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Important Relationship Lessons Toy Story Taught Us

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So, I had a Toy Story marathon which quickly taught me a very important lesson: When going through a break-up the Toy Story movies are perhaps one of the best things to watch, seriously not only did it make me feel all warm and fuzzy inside (which it did… so lovely and warm) but I had many positive epiphanies throughout about relationships (both romantic and platonic). Here are some of those important lessons that Pixar subtly teach us.

Warning: Spoilers for all 3 Toy Story’s are in this article.

Don’t let Jealously ruin potential friendships- This point is mainly emphasized in the first movie when Andy receives a new Buzz Lightyear, a high tech toy with flashing lights and wings. Woody immediately begins to feel threatened and let’s face it, starts to act like a bit of a dick. Woody became sad, anxious and bitter as Buzz became the new “spotlight” toy. Instead of embracing the new toy as an equal, he treated him with resentment and tried to knock him behind thee desk (resulting in him accidentally being flung out the window). By the end of the movie they were best friends and Woody accepted sharing the spotlight. I know sometimes I have let my own personal jealousy of someone I hardly know effect potential friendships with amazing people. Maybe your jealously is stopping you finding the Buzz to your Woody (that sounds way more sexual then it was intended to be)

Look at dem cuties

Sometimes a reality check is in order, and although difficult it is definitely worth it- In Toy Story 1 there’s a beautiful sequence in which Buzz realizes he is, in fact a child’s toy. It’s a very touching scene that made me cry as a child. Now… initially he doesn’t handle the news that he is a toy very well, but can you really blame him? His entire world has just been shattered! We next see him dressed as “Mrs. Nesbitt” in the mist of a mental breakdown. Woody slaps him some sense into him but he is still in a deep set sorrow. Not caring about his fate (he’s meant to be exploded by a rocket in a few hours) But eventually he realizes to accept who he is and realize that although he may not be a real space ranger there is still a little boy who cares deeply about him just the was he is, and let’s face it, he becomes a way better character once he realizes this. So, message? Sometimes we believe things that aren’t true because it makes us feel better about ourselves, be it denial of a failed relationship, how we act or whatever, the point is a reality check is sometimes in order and it’s painful and difficult but it ultimately leads us to becoming better people.

“One minute you’re defending the whole galaxy, and, suddenly, you find yourself sucking down darjeeling with Marie Antoinette… and her little sister.”

Just because you’ve been hurt before, doesn’t mean you should close yourself off to future relationships- In yet another Toy Story scene that has made me cry, we learn how hurt Jessie was to be forgotten about and eventually donated. To me I viewed this as a metaphor for romantic relationships. Jessie was so hurt and wanted to go live in a museum where she will never be forgotten about, but she would also never be loved in the same way. Eventually she opens her heart up again and goes to be Andy’s toy, which we know from the rest of the movie and Toy Story 3 was definitely the right decision.

When somebody loves you…..

When it comes to love, don’t worry about the future just enjoy the present- This point kind of ties in with the last one, in Toy Story 2 Woody basically needs to decide to spend eternity in a museum or a few years to be loved by a boy. The latter is uncertain and short lived, but Woody knows the importance of love, even if it’s short lived. Again, romantic relationships, don’t back out of one because you’re scared of it eventually ending. The joy is worth the sorrow (something I’m learning to accept myself).

“I can’t stop Andy from growing up… but I wouldn’t miss it for the world.”

Although they may be dreamy, don’t settle for someone who’s horrible to your friends- Let’s face it, Barbie in Toy Story 3 is KICK-ASS although her and Ken seem “Made for each other” when she realizes how horrible he is to her friends does she still stay with them in the dream house? NO, she joins her friends. That’s an important lesson right there.

Just look at that bad-ass glare

Just because a couple may seem right for each other, doesn’t mean they are- Although Woody and Jessie appear to be made for each other, they aren’t. Opposites attract and Jessie’s heart belongs to Buzz and poor Woody will never get over the tragic loss of Bo Peep (what ever happened to her?)

Buzz: I, uh, I have no idea what came over me. Jessie: Just go with it, Buzz.

Sometimes people appear nice, but they’re actually dicks- Lotso, ‘nuff said.

He smells like strawberries and blood

If you’ve been hurt in the past, don’t use it as an excuse to be a dick- Again, Lotso. He was replaced. If you have ever seen someone you once loved with someone else you may sympathize with Lotso, but he changed and became hard and distant. When hurt use the experience to change for the better, not the worst.

Sometimes, those really annoying people you hate, actually are really important, don’t underestimate them- OK, during that VERY stressful moment when all the toys were almost BURNED TO DEATH (How could you do that to my emotions Pixar… HOW?!?!) Thanks to Lotso-dick-face who rescued them? That’s right, those 3 alien dudes. My Potato head thought they were annoying and stupid but these are the same people who saved his life! I feel there’s a huge lesson in that.

these guys are FUCKING AWESOME

Just because someone parts with you, doesn’t mean they don’t still love you- In my opinion this is the most important lesson of the Toy Story trilogy and the one I personally found the most helpful. Sometimes people outgrown each other. Just because Andy doesn’t play with his toys anymore, doesn’t mean he doesn’t care about them deeply, just because someone doesn’t want to be in a relationship with you anymore, doesn’t mean they don’t still care. Sometimes only one person changes (Andy) and the other doesn’t, the other stays loyal (the toys) but eventually have to accept that if the other person has moved on, maybe they should too. Not in a sad way, but in a way that acknowledges that the relationship was very important to both, but now must end even though the other is still willing. Andy was going to take Woody to College, but eventually realized he’d have a better life where he would be played with, it was difficult but for the best.

“Now Woody, he’s been my pal for as long as I can remember. He’s brave, like a cowboy should be. And kind, and smart. But the thing that makes Woody special, is he’ll never give up on you… ever. He’ll be there for you, no matter what.”

And would you look at that I’m crying.

Basically, Pixar is awesome.

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How to Win at Having Your Heart Broken.

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You can’t, sorry.

Infidelity

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Could you forgive a cheater? If you asked me a few years (or even a few months) ago my answer would be a straight up no. I already have trust issues and personally feel like I wouldn’t be able to trust them again.

But what is cheating. So many different views and opinions. I know some people who say they could forgive their partner for kissing someone as long as they didn’t sleep together, other people would be fine with both as long as it was meaningless, and some people freak out if their partner is merely flirting a little bit, and consider that mentally cheating.

Luckily I’ve never had to be put in the position where I have been cheated on, so, I really don’t know how I’d react.

The book I’m currently reading (The Slap by Christos Tsiolkas, good book, worth a read if you have the chance) has a lot of infidelity in marriages happening and it got me thinking a lot about the topic.

These days the word Love is thrown around like crazy, but I find commitment much more special. “I’m committed to you” is far more powerful than “I love you”, loving someone doesn’t take effort. You can cheat on someone and still love them, but are you commited to them? no.

I’ve started thinking about the difference between porn and cheating and there doesn’t seem to be much of one if you think about it. The other person is still getting their physical pleasure from another being that isn’t their partner. Of course, this day an age pretty much all men watch porn (and a good deal of women). If a woman were to break up with her husband/boyfriend for watching porn society would think that she was completely over reacting. Unless he’s a porn addict and it is actively interfering with the couples actual sex life.

Where do you draw the line though? People say porn is different because it’s not a real women, but what about cyber sex than? is that not the same as porn? and with the way technology is going it won’t be long until masturbation to porn will pretty much feel like real sex with a real human being. Is there really a huge difference between mental and physical connections?

If a guy watches porn every now and again but still is a loving father to his wife and kids, still sexually attracted to his wife (and let’s him know it) what’s the harm? If the guy casually as a mistress who he sleeps with very now and again but still is a loving father to his wife and kids, still sexually attracted to his wife (and let’s him know it) what’s the harm? It’s just interesting that’s all. Is it worth throwing an entire loving relationship away because of one slip up? I… I don’t know.

Personally I don’t think I’d be able to live with myself if I cheated on my partner but could I forgive them? Who knows, hopefully that’s something I never have to figure out.

Just some food for thought. This is just a random stream of consciousness, please share your opinions.

Emotional Relapse

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So, I finally took the time to completely clear out my room, it was a big task but it needed to be done. Half-way through sifting  through all my junk I found an old birthday card from my first- well- everything. It was for my 16th birthday. It’s an adorable, (slightly crappy looking) card written on lined paper with “Barry the Mildly Concussed Birthday Turtle” drawn in pencil. In general it’s cute and silly but in the “In all seriousness-s-s-s” section you can feel the love shining through In a selfish way, I’m happy that you were born, cuz I love you and you never fail to light up my life/day/me.

Needless to say, this brought back a lot of emotions. The painful kind, we’re talking tears, the twisting sensation running through all my organs, the desire to just scream, and not to mention the feeling of my brain pushing and cracking through my skull. I thought back to some of our more romantic days, back to little 14-16 year old me. And I wanted it back in a groundhog day like scenario.

The thing is, I used to feel that every god-damn day for about a year, and it upset me that I could be that upset, if that makes sense. It’s like now I’m hurting for  both my current and old self.

I take solice in that I’m not alone. Everyone has something they miss; be it childhood, a parent, a pet, an old friend, a feeling, or, if you’re like me, love. I feel somewhat silly sharing all this personal information, mainly because I chose not to make this blog anonymous so if you know who I am odds are you’ll know 100% who I am talking about, and I’m embarrassed; this should not still be an issue for me.

You see, I was doing great. For the first time in a long time I properly felt happy. I mean truly happy, sure I don’t know where I’m going in my life, but in a weird way I was finding that somewhat exciting. I was single but feeling good about it, I mean really feeling good about it, in fact I was half-way through writing “How to win at being Single” (maybe I’ll edit and post it when I’m feeling better) and it all hit me.

How do you know if you’re over something or someone? I mean I thought I was (or as close as one can get) but after what happened today I’m in doubt. I’m sure I am. No, I know I am, but when something strongly effects you it never completely goes away, you just have to make sure it doesn’t effect your normal every day life. You’ll still feel pain, but you’ll feel “Ok” too, and the spouts of pain become fewer and fewer but you’re still always in danger of a relapse of emotion.

It’s ok to relapse though, in anything, as long as at the end of the day you keep pushing forward. I guess it just became too easy and fate decided I needed to feel overwhelmed, that I needed to have a good cry, that I needed to feel unloved and worthless, just for a little bit.  There are moments we wish we can relive, and I guess pain of knowing we can’t must always follow.

It’s important to have hope, personally I feel hope is the most important thing one can have in life and usually it pays off. Negative thinking brings you nowhere but negitive places. Hope and excitement for the future is the life-force that allows humans to surive through the pain.

Sorry this article wasn’t very witty or well throught out, I’m still feeling pretty shook up, and although this is usually something I’d write about in my diary, I figured I should give this a go. I’ll be ok, I always am. I still feel like shit. But It’ll pass… at least I hope it will. I don’t know How long I’ll feel like this, maybe it’ll just be until I eat dinner, or maybe it will last a week, but I’ll feel the complete joy I was feeling even this morning again.

No matter what’s going on in your life odds are there’s something from your past that is painful, something that is irksome that it still bothers you; deep breath and try as hard to keep that spark of hope inside alive. I guess hope is kind of like a campfire in that sometimes it’s burning bright and you’re making smores and you’re just so toasty warm, but then it starts to die down sometimes, and you panic because you are so terribly afraid that it’s going to completely burn out because it’s getting cold and you’re running out of wood, but once you find some the fire builds up again.

Just don’t let the fire die.

How to win social networks (mainly facebook)

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Right so, after I post this I am going to do the brave, the unspeakable; I am going to share my blog on my Facebook. Why? Why would I open myself up to obvious embarrassment and potential ridicule? Well, I guess the simple version of why is as follows: for the craic. This blog is still extremely new but honestly I’ve loved writing all these random little posts so far. Trying to construct wide complex opinions into concise amusing little articles is what I find to be quite an enjoyable challenge.

The thing is though, I’m not really very good, but I thought; if writing has brought so much enjoyment to my life I may as well take the risk and share this joy with others. Share this joy with you. So go on, tease me, at least I know I’m being laughed at for being 100%  me. I guess I didn’t want to be one of those people who use the internet as a veil from society, So that’s why I took the brave step in sharing this on my facebook page, opening up to the 400 people who have a general idea of who I am as a person (and possibly the occasional stalker) as apposed to using a fake name and hoping the occasional stranger would have a look.

Facebook is actually insane if you think about it. In real-life people have a filter, they try and show themselves in the best light possible until they feel comfortable, you’d think that by having control of their own personal profile people would in turn try and do the same, by using select status’s and stuff like that. However, this is not the case. The majority of people truly are themselves online, perhaps too much of themselves; we often see a darker version of people as they feel safer to fully express themselves behind a screen.

When I was younger I used to think about how cool it would be to go to school reunions, but now with social networking the way it is it seems completely pointless. It’s crazy, I know more about people I don’t care about than I ever thought I would. People share too much on facebook, myself included, and why? The answer is simple – attention. I feel people constantly update their statuses to quench that ever-present thirst for attention and sense of importance we just can’t seem to shake. I know personally that if I’m going through a hard time I’ll end up posting more than when I’m happy, not necessarily sad things either, just- well, anything, something to feel I’ve gained approval I guess. I find the psychology behind social networking truly amazing and it’s honestly something I could study for months on end without getting bored.

Facebook has completely changed the world of dating. The whole getting to know you phase is gone and although this saves a lot of time (e.g. Oh… You like Black Veil Brides in a non-ironic way? I don’t think this will go anywhere….) I do think it’s kind of sad. The mystery and enigma of the human brain is broken down into a single web page. Technology is basically fast-forwarding human relationships; whether this is good or bad I just feel people should be aware of it.

Also, it makes falling outs and break-ups impossible. You can’t get away, even if you un-friend there’s still photos, it’s still available for viewing (because let’s face it; you’re going to facebook stalk them). Seeing all these photos of friends on a night out, when you weren’t invited, it’s upsetting and leads you to feel excluded and unloved, but we look through the album anyway. It’s as if our curiosity has beaten our desire to be mentally sane. The more time you spend looking at photos of people enjoying themselves, the more alone you will feel.

I think having a lot of “Friends” on facebook is a lot like hoarding. You know you don’t really know about 75% of those people, but you like having them there… just in case, at least that’s what it’s like with me. You don’t really care about your cousin’s ex girlfriend and her new puppy, but you keep her there in your friends list, in case she posts a status about free concert tickets, or you end up becoming co-workers and actually becoming friends, you don’t want to have to do that whole awkward “re-adding” thing.

So… That was a ludicrously long introduction, but here are a few things to help you win at social networks.

  1.  If you have all your networks linked, make it so they don’t post on your behalf, I’m sick of seeing constant Instagram updates on facebook, and tumblr things on twitter. You liking a photo on an app I don’t have should not be included in my newsfeed. That is all.
  2. Think very carefully about what you post, on facebook especially. So what if you are listening to a great song, does the world really need to know you have good taste in music? Leave a little mystery; leave something to talk about to newcomers. The amount of times I was about to post a status, realized how pointless it was and deleted it is actually kind of humorous. Filtering is key, if you can’t do that than get a twitter. (We all know that’s Twitters real purpose, to make people less annoying on Facebook.)
  3. Don’t change your relationship status without informing your family and close friends first. Seriously, I hate finding out about stuff like that online (okay, fair enough if I barely know the person…)
  4. Your, you’re, their, there, they’re. It’s not that hard.
  5. Stop sending invites to pointless things…
  6. If you’re good-looking try and have at least one decent picture available for public view to avoid the “I promise they’re better looking in person” sentence…
  7. No more vague I’m upset status’s. If you’re upset bloody talk to someone about it, don’t post some bullshit wish-y wash-y status hoping someone will ask what’s wrong. You’re more likely to get decent conversation with those who care by just being honest, without the use of social media.
  8. Only use hashtags on Twitter and Instagram. What’s up with hashtags on Facebook now? I WILL NEVER ACCEPT CHANGE!
  9. Stop being ashamed of stalking people online. It’s fine, we all do it.
  10. Be weary and cautious that the facts you see on tumblr, twitter, 9gag, whatever, are not exactly coming from the most reliable source.
  11. Make sure you have a profile picture of you enjoying yourself with friends. You are 90% more likely to get asked out on a date if your profile picture is of you and your friends.  That’s not true; I just made that up, see above. Anyone can just do that. This isn’t a tip; I just wanted to make a point. Ignore 11 entirely, I don’t give a damn what your profile picture is, as long as there’s no genitalia it’s all good.

We live in a constantly updating world, one that we need to accept as normal (otherwise we’ll go insane), the best way to win online is to try your best to be careful with what you put out there. Every now and again go through your various profiles and delete what could be potentially embarrassing. Before posting anything think “would it be the end of the world if my employers/girlfriend/boyfriend/parent/whatever were to see this?” (Note: Being slightly embarrassed is different to being the end of the world.) I know all this is rich coming from me; the girl who has a blog, the girl who when upset will tweet it to the world, but I could be worse and, like in most areas of my life, it’s a topic in which I think a lot about and am trying to improve in.

Basically, you win online by not being a complete stupid annoying little shit (which I guess sometimes is harder than it sounds).