The Girls experienced many relationships throughout the course of the show, most of which ended at some point. I don’t just mean romantically; there were short term friendships and sibling relationships that may or may not have ended on the best terms. From Barbara Thorndyke to Max Weinstock and Holly Nylund, the Golden Girls had their fair share of ups and downs with relationships outside of their core group. Some might categorize these relationships as unsuccessful, but what does successful mean in a relationship?
Is it solely based on longevity? Isn’t a relationship successful if it means you grow from it as a person and learn valuable lessons, despite whether or not the person remained a constant in your life? Isn’t it successful when you can walk away, look back and see growth and knowledge for you to take into future relationships (romantic or otherwise?)
There are people from my teens and twenties whom I was sure, without a shadow of a doubt, would be in my life today. Yet here I am, mulling over this topic and I know that I will likely never see those people again. Does it still hurt? Sometimes, depending on the relationship and how it all went down. Have I moved on from them? In most cases yes (or at the very least I’ve come to terms with the outcome, even if it still bothers me to this day why the relationship ended.)
I am a firm believer that people take certain roles in my life for specific reasons. Some have been around since I was in first grade while others came into my life for my college years and nothing else. Regardless of how much time or bonding I had with someone, it seems that there was an expiration date and they’re no longer a part of my life.
Why does the end of a relationship automatically = unsuccessful?
And does that mean that success in a relationships automatically = separated by death and death only?
Why is longevity the main determining factor? Likely because people assume that if 2 people in a relationship (of any kind) stay there that they must be happy and the dynamic must be healthy. Of course, we know that can’t always be true. We can learn so much from relationships and sometimes it doesn’t take 20+ years to do so. Like so many other things, the quality of the relationship depends on the ROI. If you learn one major thing about your own communication style or what you need from a long term relationship, that knowledge is worth the exchange.
Blanche and Mel Bushman never really officially venture in relationships territory. Sure, they try one real date but soon discover that their roles in each others’ lives are exactly how they should be: friends who give it the ol’ heave ho every now and again. Blanche learned a lot about herself from that relationship and for that reason, I think there was success despite the fact that he got back together with his ex wife in the end.
I recently found this quote in some online post from when Helena Bonham Carter and Tim Burton divorced. It really summed up my feelings on this:
We did find each other. And really, the mark of a successful relationship shouldn't be whether you're there forever after. Sometimes you're not meant to be forever together. Sometimes you have to come to terms with the fact that that was it. But that was a gift, a massive gift…
A massive gift. That’s a good way to think about it.
In friendship and cheesecake,