Let me clear: when it comes to relationships, to each their own but, if you ask me, there are some relationship trends in Lebanon that need changing.

On a very broad scale, the worst issue would have to be instances when Christians, Druze and Muslims avoid dating one another, or - worse yet - date but break up because their “parents would kick them out” if they ever associated themselves with a different sect in the name of love (*takes a deep breath*). But, in hopes of avoiding a downward spiral into sectarian codswallop, let’s take a glance at some less serious issues that are nonetheless in dire need of tackling.

1. Being Over-Possessive

(Photo via weheartit.com)

This is a trend that is quite common in Lebanon that I find not only disturbing but also rather unhealthy. Usually (but not always) it is the man of the relationship who is in “possession” of the other.

The over-possessive partner in the relationship needs to know where the other person is going, with who, how, when, why – staghf’urullah - just to go on a trip to the supermarket. Because, you know, what if you cheat on him during that two-minute walk?

2. Lack of Individual Independence

(Photo via fem.mgid.com)

This is when couples merge from two people into one, and become entirely incapable of existing independently without the other involved.

Give me one genuinely good reason why you can't go out in public without your boyfriend being there (that is, if he isn’t possessive and forcing himself on you)? Allow me to be poetic for a second and throw in one of my favorite Khalil Gibran quotes, “But let there be spaces in your togetherness and let the winds of the heavens dance between you. Love one another but make not a bond of love: let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.”

It is so important to realize that you have your own interests, your own ideals, your own desires and if you ever think for a second that it is selfish of you *not* to include your partner in every little aspect of your life, think again – you're not doing your personal self or well-being any favors here.

3. Social Media, Social Media, and More Social Media

(Photo via popcornculture.nl)

I already talked about this particular issue in a previous blog post, but yes – this is definitely a trend that needs to end. The issue with social media isn’t necessarily about the content (here's looking at you excessive love quotes on Instagram), but the very idea that a couple think their relationship doesn’t exist if their life isn’t depicted on social media in every little way. Publicizing all of your private issues simply for the sake of reaffirmation reveals you have other issues you're not dealing with.

4. Saying "I Love You" From Week One

(Photo via healthyandbeloved.com)

I think it's all too common to use the phrase “I love you” to depict what I will refer to as “excitement” very early on.

Of course, if “I love you” were used to depict love in a natural, careless sense – who is anyone to judge? But the “I love you” we’re talking about is the Jack-and-Rose-I-met-you-three-days-ago-but-you-are-the-love-of-my-life kind of love. How can you say that after knowing someone for less than a week? And saying it with such utter conviction? The beauty of love loses its essence when it's used so quickly and easily. Then it's like you're building a relationship on a foundation that does not even exist.

5. Jealousy

(Photo via custardbasket.tumlr.com)

“Ana badi ifham who’s that girl you’re talking to?”

And ana badi ifham why you’re in a relationship if there’s zero trust between you two.

Jealousy is a huge issue in relationships here – an almost defining, core one. There is lack of trust in one another and worse yet, a desire to initiate jealousy out of some perverse enjoyment of the whole charade.

Isn’t that sick?

Although many women and men complain about jealousy, they nevertheless admit in private that they secretly enjoy it. To them, there is nothing sexier than a jealous partner. One of my girlfriends has actually commented that there's nothing sexier than a domineering, controlling man. I don't even know what to say to this.

Five out of ten women will admit that they like a man to be powerful and dominant and yet, ten out of ten will claim they want equality.

It doesn’t work that way, hun.

6. "Now I Ain't Sayin' She's a Gold Digger (But She Probably Is)

(Photo via blackcitygirl.com)

Nemr Aou Nassar jokes aside, how shameful is it that Lebanese women are famous for being gold diggers?

The mere fact that the stereotype exists is, quite frankly, bewildering and unacceptable. Once again, it goes beyond the notion that some women here lack education and understanding (and dignity, may I add) and addresses the fact that they still have a long way to go toward personal self-fulfillment and a strong self-esteem.

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I actually want to comment to this because my boyfriend is Lebanese and one I've never been possessive over him there's a difference between being possessive and caring and second I try to keep our relationship off the social media sites he keeps it on the sites and third the whole saying I love you after a week that never happened I told him I loved him after the 1 year we were together been together two years And forth I always sleep in the bed by myself he lives three hours from me we've never shared a bed and for being jealous I'm not I'm territorial there's a difference jealous is when you don't have them in to territorial is what you arty have them in their yours and last I'm not after his money or the fancy style house he lives in or the million dollar car that he drives that doesn't impress me I fell love with him not what kind of job he has or where he lives or how much money he has or what kind of car he drives I fell in love with the person we might have our ups and downs but in all true honesty I do love this guy a whole lot sorry but I do

Nichole Danieri on Jul 31, 2016 via web