Responsible Hearts

There are few things in this world that feel as good as having someone fall madly in love with you. Whether it's the reason-less gifts, the huge doe eyes or the smitten smiles; few things can up the confidence factor like a person enamored of you. Obviously, this is only second to when you are so mutually infatuated with them the world seems to stand still. You find yourself totally and utterly unproductive, fully distracted by the mere ding of a text, and hopelessly overwhelmed by romantic daydreams.

On the other side of this rainbow-filled, My Little Pony Pleasantville is the barren, desert of unreciprocated love. I had breakfast with my sister-in-law Sarah, who happens to be one of my dearest friends and often a sounding board for my life's decisions. During our conversation I was talking about a dear friend of mine who is dating someone they like, but not someone they were madly in love with. The difficult situation she has found herself in is that he, on the other hand, is in fact puppy dog, want to get married, in love with her.

She obviously adores him, and has no desire to break up with him, but at the same time, she often feels guilt-ridden and inauthentic when they are expressing the "I love you" pillow talk. She recently asked me my thoughts on the situation and I was reiterating this conversation with Sarah.

My feelings on relationships are that we all have a "heart responsibility" to one another. It's natural to not always be on the exact same page. There is an obligation, though, when one person jumps into the deep end and the other person is not willing to walk the same plank to have a conversation about where the relationship stands. There's no dispute that this is one of the most dreaded, uncomfortable, stomach-turning conversations, but it's also a true test for people whose character outweighs the parameters of  "what's comfortable and easy."

The fascinating thing is how many times we are presented with a situation where we can do what is right, or we can do what is easy. This transcends relationships into life. And there are plenty of people who choose to hold themselves to certain expectations in certain areas of their life, but it’s hard to know which hat to wear and when it’s appropriate to make a wardrobe change.

One of the insights Sarah had on this conversation, being happily married, is that at least for her, she knew when she met Nate that the relationship was worth not “screwing up long enough to find out” if it would potentially lead to marriage. If we’re honest with ourselves, I think our gut will sound the alarm when it’s the “one,” otherwise it’s the silence we know all too well that says, “next.”

I have no doubt that the experience from my past broken heart is the underlying motivation for this blog. It’s from that fragile place that I implore you and others to respect those precious strings by which our heart dangles. Several times in life we will be able to take advantage of a situation, ignore someone else’s needs to pursue our own, become reckless with someone’s heart; but what if there was one less person who did? What would this world look like if we treated each other better, with an awareness, honesty and selflessness?

I think we sometimes forget how precious our hearts are and what an honor it is when someone hands us theirs with the trust we’ll cherish and protect it. All I’m asking is that we make an effort to take better care of one another and infuse heart responsibility into our character’s repertoire. So to my dear friend who asked my advice, let him go. We all deserve to have someone as madly in love with us as we are with them.Images courtesy of,

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