One-Sided Love: to be loved or wanted?

I’d like to take a moment to talk about the very heart of this fantastic play that I’m lucky enough to work on. I don’t want to go into to much detail about this show itself, I want you to come and experience it for yourselves. However I want to talk about the topics of what this play represents, my own theories on some of the characters and what people can learn from this show. One Sided Love is a piece of new writing that follows the the lives of these characters, that in one way or another, are struggling with this issue, even if they don’t realise it. “What do we really want? To be loved or to be wanted?”

Human beings are naturally social creatures and all of us crave deep connections. However, often issues from our past, effect us in such away that we self sabotage relationships. Not just romantic ones either, friendships, family, work/ career aspirations. Even the relationship we have with ourselves. Which stop us from achieving out deepest goals and ambitions. Now, I am not a psychologist, this is just my humble opinion from my own experiences & my loved ones. I believe that most of our issues, traits and desires can steam back from childhood. For example, we tend to go for partners that remind us of our parents in some way; (If your father was emotional distant or mother who is strict). Not always but people tend to have find partners with those traits, because we fall in love with what feels familiar to us. This goes for positive traits too. Unfortunately, its the negative traits that leave the real mark and effect future relationships in the worse ways. Have you ever met a woman that only finds herself attracted to Jerks/ cheaters? She’s convinced she can change them? The sad truth is “People don’t change just for another person, they have to want to change deep down and have to motivation to do so”. 

One of the characters in One Side Love “Iris”, is unfortunately one of these woman. She has fallen in and out of love many times in the past. And can be a little closed off, because she doesn’t want be hurt again. However, she takes risk because she believes she found someone will treat her right. Only to make the same again. She is repeating history, as many of us do. Failing to see the difference between real love, commitment, respect V.s lust, validation and feeling wanted. She is the type of woman that falls in love hard and fast, and ignores all the warning signs at the start of a relationship. One of my favourite quotes describing this. “All the red flags just look like flags when your wearing rose tinted glasses”.  She falls for the idea of someone first and doesn’t see them for who they really are, its a vicious cycle. Which makes me question…. Why do people cheat in the first place?

  Everyones definition of “cheating” is different. Emotional cheating, Physical cheating, Sexting, dancing to closely to someone? It all depends of your relationship dynamic. So lets just go with “an act/ behaviour of disloyalty that betrays your partner”. Now thats out the way, back to the main question. Why do people cheat? In a small summary, its usually down to 2 reasons. The cheater is either:

1) Unhappy in the relationship (emotional, sexually, etc..

2) Unhappy in themselves. (no purpose, feeling lost, etc.)

 Sometimes its both, or one leads to the other. They feel like something is missing. And instead of working on that relationship or close to be single and work on themselves. They look for what is missing in someone else. For validation, excitement, not to feel alone.  Much like one of our characters Jasper, charming, good looking, wonderful girl, good job…. Surely he must be happy right? I don’t believe so, he’s the type of man that can put on a great facade, a convincing one at that. However, his behaviour and actions speak louder then his words. He is deeply insecure, in his career and love life. He can’t seem to do anything right. Instead of looking within himself and trying to figure what is wrong. He looks for happiness in someone else. His mindset is “The grass is greener on the other side”. In this case, he’s wrong… the grass is greener on the side you water it on. 

As humans, we often look at ourselves and compare our lives to other people. Careers, families, relationships. holidays, friendships. Especially in an age of social media were we only post the shiny happy versions of ourselves. We look at everyone else and assume people are happier then we are. This is one of the most damaging things we can do. Instead of watering our own grass, we wonder why everyone else looks greener. We ruin relationships with others because we aren’t maintaining them and appreciating them the way we should.

 This is what I want the audience to take away from this show. These characters are all relatable to us in some way, we must learn from their mistakes. Don’t let the issues you got from your past effect your bright future. Love yourself before you can love anyone else. So you won’t just accept being wanted over loved. Appreciate what you have and strive to be better. Take off the rose tinted glasses and water your garden.

Words by Zara Brown
Images by Andrew Smith