Test 15: There is no such thing as romance

January 25, 2011 at 11:45 am 1 comment

… there is only trouble and desire.
Hal Hartley’s 1992 film “Simple Men

Before I start this, I have to – if I want to stay alive – report that my wife thinks I am very very UNromantic. Now that I have made this humiliating public confession, I guess I am off the hook for flowers on the 14th of February (and it’s only 6 weeks or so until stake and a bj day!!!)

Right, first thing that leaps out is the following sentence in the preamble (which may be from the test, devised by Dr Ellen Berscheid in her paper in Personal Relationships, 5, 31-8 “Dependency and Insecurity in Romantic Relationships: Development and Validation of Two Companion Scales.”) is the instruction “With respect to the member of the opposite sex with whom you are most involved, indicate the extent to which you agree or disagree with each statement…”

Wtf? What blatant frigging heterosexism. Hullllllooo??? Have you heard that they took homosexuality out of the frackin’ DSM?? FFS people, wake up and smell the frappuccino

Deep breath. There’s 31 questions that you answer from 1 = strongly disagree to 6 = strongly agree.

A little reverse scoring and you end up with two sub-scales, for “dependency” and “insecurity”
According to the test (disclaimers apply), I am about in the 50th percentile for “Dependency”, but that’s because I answered “strongly agree” to the first three statements “X’s presence makes any activity more enjoyable, X is close to my ideal as a person [which is true, bar about 10 to 14 inches of height] and “I am very lucky to be involved in a relationship with X.” So sue me.
On “insecurity” I am at about the 22nd percentile (which fits, mostlyish, with my low low score on the mistrustfulness).

As you get older (hopefully) you reflect upon and set aside the infantile wish-fulfillment that you are going to meet One Perfect Person who solves All of your Problems and Meets All of Your Needs. I mean, that is some batshit crazy toxic tosh! You won’t find anyone like that, because they don’t exist, they couldn’t exist and if they DID exist, it would not be healthy for you. And you can’t BE that person for someone else.

I should pull out my ol’ Culture Vulture on the Political Economy of Romantic Love… yeah, why not…

Kurt Vonnegut on respect

One of the many unnecessary American catastrophes going on right now, along with the religious revival and boiling water with plutonium, is all the people who are getting divorced because they don’t love each other any more. That is like trading a car when the ashtrays are full. When you don’t RESPECT your mate anymore – that’s when the transmission is shot and there’s a crack in the engine block.

“It begins when you sink into his arms, it ends with your arms in his sink…”
Feminist analysis of princess-marries- prince fairy tales…

If I didn’t have you, by Tim Minchin

Leave Me Alone I’m Lonely by Pink

Romantic Love as a cultural construct
Cross cultural comparisons
Robert Sternberg on Romantic Love
Wikipedia onCo-dependency

Further reading
The Woman who was changed by Pearl S. Buck


Entry filed under: self-knowledge. Tags: .

Test 14: Trust Test 16: Dossiering up the Sex

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Hardy? Hardy har har – resilience test fails to impress «  |  January 27, 2011 at 12:15 pm

    […] the psychological tests I am blogging my way through upset me too much. Sure, the heterosexism in the one about about attitudes to sex got me het up. But this one, on “hardiness” has really got my goat. Can anyone suggest any less […]


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