She's always quick to point out how normal it is to have rocky patches, drawing my attention to my own patterns of behaviour, many of which stem back to early childhood (namely: ).
Our romantic culture actively encourages it, with anything short of uninterrupted bliss and sustained lustful attraction branded as "settling".
Over the years, particularly when in a perceived crisis, Mum's advice has been the perfect balm to my anxieties.
Julia fled the restaurant right after her coup de grace.
It was Valentine's Day, and the place was jammed with celebrating couples. I moved outside and wandered the streets for hours in a fugue state fueled by shock. The finer points of escaped me entirely, so distracted was I by the high cheekbones, gray eyes, long, blond hair in a French twist, the figure both voluptuous and athletic. With my previous girlfriends, sex had been exhilarating recreation, as fun as a high-speed water slide.
I never knew any different, and to this day most of what I know about dating, love and relationships, I learned from her. How long to wait before following up on an un-returned text message. She's the kind of mum who likes to fill you in on why sex work should be covered by the NDIS, well before you've had your morning coffee.
Growing up, the house was littered with educational dolls, many of which came with their own little frankfurt penises and biologically accurate vaginas.
She has been known to embrace 'circular dating' (dating multiple people at once to determine which are worth pursuing) and took to Plenty of Fish with gusto (I should know, I took her profile picture).
Basically, she's under no illusion that we're predestined to find : "How else do you get to the two and the three?
Even though it was one of the most challenging times of my life, my parents getting a divorce was ultimately in the best interest of their health and happiness.