The Problem of Constitutional Incompatibility

Opposites attract, but that doesn’t mean they stay together.

I spent several years with someone who, in many ways, was
the mathematical opposite of me. Different attitude, different lifestyle,
different goals, different everything. Which, admittedly, was kind of endearing
at first. Our personalities seem to compliment each other nicely.

But as we got more serious, and as my friends started
dropping more hints, I learned that what we lacked was a commonality of
constitution. We might have listened to the same music, but there was still no
overlap in value system. We might have enjoyed the same restaurants, but there
was still no sublime connection.

When the time came to plan our future together, I knew there
was something missing. I knew I couldn’t make her just like me, no matter how
books I read. And I knew that if I didn’t make a move soon, cognitive
dissonance would stick me into a corner that would be agonizing to escape.

So I ended it. Abruptly. As honestly, kindly and clearly as
I could. And it wasn’t the smoothest breakup in the world, but it certainly
wasn’t the bloodiest. I’ve seen worse.

About a year later, once the minefield had cleared, once I’d
siphoned all the regret and pain and guilt out of my system, I made a decision.

Life’s too short to spend with someone who’s
constitutionally incompatible.


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