My Choice: RE#4

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"Well no matter what as long as you are happy then I am happy..." this is actually a part of a conversation that I have with my best friend a while ago when I asked her what she think about me living a life of being truthful to myself, of understanding and accepting my sexuality. Her response to that resonates very much with the book that we are reading "The Promise of Happiness"

From what she said, I sort of have the duty for being happy cause I am given the responsibility for her happiness. That my cause of happiness will make her happy. But that conversation makes me feels that she is not happy for who I am but because of my happiness. That she does not share my cause of happiness and she just want the result of my happiness. Somehow saying that "I just want you to be happy". But I want her to be happy for me because of who I am and this not happy with the fact that she is not happy with the reason that I want her to be happy. And this I am not happy. But she is happy as I wanted to protect her happiness, as I was given the responsibility for her happiness. So I have to agree with her cause of happiness and still pursue my cause of happiness by acknowledging that she does not shared my cause of happiness.

I guess this very much show what is written by Sara Ahmed that "Happiness is not just how subjects speaks of their own desire and duty but also what they want to give and receive from others."

Furthermore I also try to see this from her point of view. I am thinking that she wanted to be happy for me cause I am going to be happy if she is happy. But at the same time she might not understand my cause of happiness, that is to live a queer life. To not fit into her script of happiness, thus she choose to seek for the similarity or the shared object of happiness. The similarity of the hetero-happy-script and the homo-happy-script. Or maybe to take the easy way out of achieving happiness, that is to ignore the object of happiness for each party and just to focus on the result of happiness.

I like what movieofmyself mentioned in the class as well about gay people having a family and children. I personally think that the constitution of family is somehow the symbol of happiness, the ultimate object of happiness, the result of love which also leads to happiness. But a family which is just a couple does not lead to happiness, it needs to build upon the object of happiness, which is the kids, the money, the house, all the privileges that assist life, that one is supposed to bring in to a family to have a happy family. But being a homosexual couple means that it is a non-reproductive family, because of this it makes up unhappy queer because reproductive nature is a heterosexual privilege. So by adopting kids somehow serve as a loop hole of giving them the privilege of obtaining happiness.

I would also like to bring in something that is mentioned by Ahmed, "There is no doubt that it is hard to separate images of the good life from the historic privileging of heterosexual conduct, as expressed in romantic love and coupledom, as well as in the idealization of domestic privacy."

1 Comment

Davvy, this topic intrigues me more than any of the others that we have covered in this class. While reading your retelling of the conversation with your best friend, I was so reminded of the conversation I had with my mom when I told her I was a lesbian. I am fairly certain that most of us in the class have had a similar conversation with someone in our lives. It is curious, I remember sitting there wishing that my mom would say she was happy because I was being true to myself. Instead she said, “well I just want you to be happy”. Her happiness for my genuine life is what was going to make me happy at that moment. Since reading Ahmed’s book, I have started questioning myself anytime I even use the word happiness. Do I really mean happy? In what context do I mean it? Do I really just want someone to be happy or do I not want to make their life any harder by disagreeing with their reason for happiness? Have I ever really wanted someone to be happy for a true reason, or has it been misplaced happiness?
What is it about a queer life that makes us grasp so desperately for our loved one’s happiness for us? I know for me personally, I am always worrying about my loved one’s happiness. It is really important to me, but is it my duty to be happy for them to ensure their happiness? Perhaps they owe it to me to be happy for me because It is necessary for my true happiness. I love this idea of happiness and I really enjoyed Ahmed’s book. I think you bring up some really interesting questions that I myself had in regards to my life experiences.

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