A well-known sociologist used the term liquid to describe some people and their behaviors. Also to talk about companies and governments, and to talk about love. Liquid love talks about fleeting relationships, one-night rolls, Face book or Tinder relationships that only last a day of hangover. Fragile relationships, difficult to sustain, that fit in the context of liquid modernity, capitalism. And consumerism that surrounds us.
We are surrounded by messages that make us think that we can acquire objects that alleviate our anxiety and our worries. We have liquid relationships with money, for example: “you have or do not have liquidity”. And, of course, we have liquid relationships with consumer objects. Such as books, clothes, furniture, etc.
Self-love avoids liquid love
We have lost the fixed structures and our relationship with the institutions. He says that we live a liquid reality, that there are no longer patterns and structures that we can follow. That give us security in our lives and when making decisions. Having lost the foundations that helped us in the past everything becomes flexible and liquid to adapt to a world where everything is changing at great speed.
A consequence of this liquidity in everything is that our identity, which is the last thing we can take root in, is also liquid. The identity of many “modern people” may seem very marked from the outside. But from the inside it is quite fragile.
Drop of water with a heart shape
And it is that the world that surrounds us demands us in many ways to have a flexible identity that adapts to what happens in our environment. Our identity has to be molded to this society. And its tastes and that is why it is not stable. Nor are the social strata and institutions stable. Everything is versatile, changeable and fickle. So much so that the question who are we really? Draws a vacuum deeper than ever before our eyes.
This liquid identity follows the trend of brands and objects of consumption, is not solid or secure. On the contrary, it is weak and easy to manipulate. In addition. It is even more in those fleeting and intense relationships that we establish.
We speak of an identity that is very dependent on what is outside: whether they are people or objects. Thus, liquid love is created with fear. Because relationships are born of the anxiety that causes the echo of one’s thoughts in solitude and dies. Because of the need to protect ourselves from the possibility that the other leaves us. Or because we need more emotional intensity. And We think that we will only find it at the beginning of a new relationship.
Thus, our self-esteem becomes as liquid as the links we build. We seek security and reaffirmation in the external. We are afraid to commit ourselves and be hurt. Because we do not feel capable or deserving of a serious and deep relationship.
Our self-esteem is consumer of objects that we believe will make us feel satisfied. But in the long run it is never satisfied and always seeks more. With couples the same thing happens (liquid love). We throw them out if they have not filled that void that has nothing to do with the exterior, but with our interior.
Liquid love, the inheritance of liquid time
A lot of what used to work does not work anymore. The links with our world are very affected by these changes. There are almost no jobs for life, houses for life, homes for life and even we are losing partners of a lifetime. Liquid works, liquid places …, liquid love.
We have a fragile emotional equilibrium, we are afraid of betting on a person who can leave at any moment, for someone who wants us only momentarily. Or who makes us lose what we consider our freedom. Freedom that is indispensable in this era.
We need to cling to our power to choose our individuality and freedom so as not to attach ourselves to anything or anyone. Thus, the ease and speed with which we get things makes us not prepared for obstacles. And that the first problem we want to discard our relationship. As we do with the objects that give us problems.
Woman looking towards the sea giving thanks
The liquid love described helps us to better understand the type of relationships that we generate and maintain today. Its origin and its course. It is true that there are many factors that have to do with today’s society. Understanding these factors can help us not to fall so easily in materialism. And consumerism, in daily life. But especially in our personal relationships.
The concept of liquid love can make us understand that. Although we now find partners through technology, nothing can replace an emotional connection that develops over the years. Neither the communication nor the constant work required by a relationship can be replaced as quickly as the objects. It can teach us that although now sex has been released. Nothing replaces the sex with love of a couple who has taken the time to get to know each other and talk about what they like.
Liquid modernity impels us not to think, to substitute solitude for objects or a romantic dinner for an expensive and impersonal gift. But the fact that we live in this society does not mean that we can not reflect and take the helm of our life. It does not imply that we cannot decide to spend a weekend at home talking to our own, doing puzzles. Or playing board games, instead of going to the mall and consuming. It does not imply that we cannot read or have simple tastes, have an old mobile phone. And not want a single night’s sex or ephemeral relationships.
There are many ideas – somehow unhealthy – that are part of the social current that surrounds us. The new generations are born with technology and sexual liberation, however with them. And with ourselves- we have the obligation to remember. Before to assume it, is perhaps one of the best positions we can adopt before the forces that try to influence us in their own benefit.