Arrey jao, nahi karna celebrate Valentine shalentine day, kar lo jo karna hai. I’m sick and tired of every vella asking every other about their plans for V-Day. I just don’t get this needless pressure to celebrate, be it New Year’s Eve or Valentine’s Day. Do you? For me, the stress of planning or gifting something only because a lot of people have asked, takes away the fun and spontaneity out of celebrations.
And as if Valentine’s Day — the origin and logic of which is a mystery to more than 90% of those who dutifully flock restaurants, suffer long waiting, and end up paying twice as much — was not enough, now there is a Rose Day, a Propose Day, a Morose Day, an Afsos Day or whatever, in the run up. Anyway, I’m just ranting, the existence of these days is not the topic of discussion today. The spotlight, this week, is on those who are sitting, with a rose, and their head, in their hands because they are the unfortunate victims of OSL syndrome. One-Sided-Love. Typical filmi style, I love Sunita, but Sunita loves Anita…oops.. Amit, Amit loves someone else and so on. Aao sabko thappad lagaoon. What a big tamasha our life is!
And then suddenly this OSL becomes the focus of their existence, they can’t help but keep on thinking about the person they have a crush on, who, for some reason, does not feel the same way about them. I’ve been at the receiving end of several mails from OSL sufferers this week. And in the interest of humanity, I’m attempting calmness tips for them rather than for those mushy buffoons who’ve already spent three months of pocket money on buying gifts for their girlfriends, which they would receive with an awww and tears on Feb 14 and exchange with the store on the 15th. No need to fret, the OSL gang, calmness awaits you.
1 Have you said it right?
Before you go all teary-eyed on how the person you love doesn’t love you back, just be sure that you’ve expressed how you feel, clearly and in the right manner. The worst would be to move on from someone ‘assuming’ they don’t feel the same way, when they perhaps would have, had you expressed clearly. And since this one thing is likely to have a big impact on your future, be upfront, clear and un-dramatic, in the way you put across your feelings. In other words, don’t get into the farce of waiting for Propose Day, buying cards with hearts drawn on every free inch, and writing cheesy lines picked up from the internet. And if a romantic relationship is what you are proposing, be mature, sensible and clear about it. Don’t mumble vague things such as ‘I want fraandship’ with you, which then gives the other person a chance to throw back equally stupid replies such as ‘but we are already fraands’, when they jolly well know what’s being implied in the proposal. So, unless your OSL is for someone who is already committed in a relationship — in which case go ahead, slap yourself — say clearly why you feel the two of you are right for each other, and how it would be a good idea to explore taking it to the next level. Sorry, now that I’ve written it, I realise that my advice sounds more apt for a corporate proposal. Sigh. Okay, buy the damn heart-shaped card but don’t be tacky. Please.
2 Learn to take ‘No’
Now, you expressed your feelings but the other person replied that he/she doesn’t think the same way about you. Well, too bad, but that’s it. THAT’S IT. Not an earth shattering development and certainly not the end of the world. Yes, it is disappointing, but do not make the mistake of over-reacting and thinking of it as a ‘rejection’ of you as a person. Someone not wanting to be with you is about them, not about you. Everyone has a right to choose who they want to be with. Grant them that right, and don’t go all bitter because you are not who they want. Also, don’t trample your self-respect by harping on it even after they’ve clarified their response. Remember, it’s not easy for them too, and a lot of people hesitate from giving a clear negative response to a proposal. But for your own good, learn to interpret it correctly, and to let go. Anyone who says things like ‘I do feel for you but my parents would never agree’ or ‘I think you are great and anyone would be lucky to have you, but right now my focus is my career’ is essentially saying ‘No, thanks’ but doesn’t want to be rude. Don’t prolong their agony, and yours, by not understanding their response and insisting that you’ll convince the parents when the right time comes. They know it already, and have still said ‘No’. Learn to take it.
3 Move on
Are you the King of the World? Or God? Even if you are, there’s no guarantee that everything in life would work out the way you want it to. You felt for someone, but it didn’t work out. Now move on. There’s too much to do, to accomplish in life. Love, or the lack of it, is just a part of our life’s journey. Don’t try to convert that part into the entire whole. Doesn’t work that way. Staring for too long at a closed door takes our attention away from all the other doors that are open. Phew! Itna gyaan toh Aastha channel pe bhi nahi milta. Please grasp it before I get indigestion from saying all these wise things. I promise not to write any more senti columns on matters of the heart. Too much ho gaya… here’s my parting advice and the most important, golden rule of love. ‘If ever there’s a choice in life, always go for someone who loves you, rather than someone who you love’. Khush rahoge, mind it.
Click here for more Valentine’s Day stories
Sonal Kalra thinks Valentine’s Day is one of the biggest causes behind the state of bad mental health in India. Research, anyone? Mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Facebook at facebook.com/sonal.kalra.
Follow on Twitter at twitter.com/sonalkalra