When two people meet, if they are the opposite end of the spectrum to each other, can they ever find a common ground? The situation I am thinking of is the following: If the woman has had major responsibilities in her life, but is now free and just wants to have no-strings attached fun, whereas the man, having lived a hedonistic lifestyle, now has major responsibilities, can there ever be a happy ending?
Dr Jax: Yes, definitely. They would have huge amounts of common ground. The woman knows what it’s like to be responsible and the man knows what it’s like to be hedonistic. But they’ve essentially met at the wrong time in their lives. What they need to do to get their happy ending is to synchronize what they want out of life. They are like pendulums swinging to extremes and both out of sync. But if the attraction is strong enough they will stop swinging so wildly and will slowly synchronize, finding a happy equilibrium.
They may also have other interests where they could connect. For example, liking the same authors, the same food, holidaying in the same place, etc, etc.
And this one is from me, because this is a HUGE problem for me. How do we know if our characters are being too self aware?
Dr Jax: A good rule of thumb is if you think they are too self aware, they probably are. 🙂 Other red flags (though not bad in themselves, they can be indications if taken as a whole that things aren’t right): Your character frequently thinks about how events in their past have made them behave. Your character is never surprised by their own actions. Your character doesn’t grow. These are the things that from a psychological viewpoint dont’t reflect how real people behave. People don’t think about events in their past as influencing their current behaviour. People are often surprised by their own actions. And people do change in response to things that happen in their lives.
So how self aware are people about their behaviour generally?
Dr Jax: Dimly at best. Solid research shows that our consciousness runs one to two seconds behind our actions. So we act, then become aware of acting, then we make up justifications for doing so.
Thanks once again for your questions everyone. Will do this again next month!