My children are a reflection of me.
Your children are a reflection of you and all your failures.
No. My children are the reflection of the person that I want to be.
That you wanted to be?
That I should be. In their faces I see the same hopes, the same dreams.
Do you see the same crippling fear?
They are going to be strong. They’re going to be as good as I am, or better.
That shouldn’t be hard.
I shall take great pride in them, as I take pride in myself.
Take pride in shackling them.
They shall be free of the constraints that I had in my youth.
And those constraints shall be replaced by endless pressure.
They’ll get to be young. The way I never was.
They’ll never grow up.
My children will be a reflection of me.
They will be me.
They have to be.
Did you hear that?
What is the point of a pact like that?
‘If we’re still single at 25, or 30, we’ll marry each other.’ – if you wanted to marry me at all, why not marry me now? I’m never going to look better than I do now. I’m never going to be better than I am now. Either I’m good enough for you now or I’m not, end of. If I’m not, what do you think is going to happen in the space of five years?
I’ll tell you what’s going to happen: you’re going to get desperate. I’m going to get desperate. We’re going to lie awake at night in our respective beds, stressing about who we’ll take to so-and-so’s wedding, and when we last had sex, and maybe, just maybe, if we might be that one person who ends up with no one. We’re going to be cold. We’re going to be alone, and at that point, we’re just going to want something familiar. We’ll suppress the things we dislike about each other. We’ll force ourselves to take an interest in the other’s passions. We’ll even forgo our personal beliefs just so we have someone to go home to each night.
And ever so slightly, we’ll resent each other. And at the back of our minds, we’ll think, ‘What if you’re only with me because you’re scared of being alone?’ And we’ll let that fester. And every time we have an argument, it’ll come up. Passively, mind. We’ll never address it directly, for fear that we’ll have to acknowledge it properly. You know – part ways.
Then we’re back to square one. Cold. Alone. And even older.
So while I understand this is all ‘fun and games’, I don’t play games with matters of the heart, and I never ever make fun of it.
…Should we order?