According to dictionary.com to want is to feel a need or desire for, wish for, crave, demand or to be without or deficient. While a need is a requirement, necessary duty or obligation, a lack of something wanted or deemed necessary. No wonder we can’t tell the two apart, there isn’t a thin line between the verb and the noun, they use each other to describe themselves.
The discussion centered on one character Mandy, saying she needed him right now and how she wasn’t where he was which was wanting. Ashton promised to show her the difference. Now with two words so tightly twisted together you’re stuck looking at the zebra wondering if he was white with black stripes or black with white stripes how do you decide which is right?
Stepping back we both gave examples and saw how when creating a relationship, real or imagined, it’s all about how you see the word. For me I look at needing food for survival, but wanting a thick juicy steak to satisfy me. That’s the spin I take with my characters. When I look at needing my next meal if I’m deprived of it how far would I go? Would I steal? Would I murder? What great post apocalyptic movie doesn’t push a person’s moral compass?
This isn’t the first time need verses want has come up in my books. It seems to be a theme, not just with me, but other authors. Those who stress needing their lover tend to put me off. It’s a personal thing, when I feel I need my husband I feel trapped. Like if he went away or left me I might as well kill myself because I couldn’t even get dressed in the morning. We’ve seen this drawn out in blank chapters in a book… I’ll let you all figure that unhealthy relationship out yourself.
But when I want my husband we’re not one singular being. We’re two distinct human beings, one with a great ass and another with the ability to make the other speak in tongues in a healthy relationship and I’ll let you sort out the people involved.
I’m not one for weak heroines, they can live with out the men in their lives, but they want them. They make them laugh, challenge them and love them without reservation.
Now for the flipside. Just because we want something doesn’t mean it’s good for us. Cholesterol levels, waistlines and jails wouldn’t exist if we as humans could control our wants. Human contact is a basic need from birth. We’ve seen it time and time again, shunned and ignored children will seek out negative attention to none at all. We need to have that acceptance and love from our partners. So if it’s a need where does it make a turn to the negative? For me it’s when it’s held back or doled out in spoonful’s to only the good lovers.
When Mandy says she needs Ashton it’s because she can’t understand her feelings. All she knows is when he’s around, bugging her, sleeping with her or generally in her presence she doesn’t feel empty. At the same time she hates the feeling because when he’s away she aches for him. Would she shrivel up and die if he never returned her calls? No, but she can’t see that side yet. At this point knowing he’s a phone call away gives her an anchor. Not all anchors are good and she can’t see that Ashton wants her. Could he live without her? Yes. Some people are vegetarians and others are deathly allergic to peanuts. They can live with out meat or peanut butter, and even though I can’t understand it they can. Now tell me how many times have you looked at two people and wondered WTF? That’s want, two people who want to be together and although need is tightly wound around the relationship it isn’t the whole thing.
So which do you choose? To be needed or wanted. Both lead to love according to the Beatles all we need is love. All I know is there is not clear cut answer to this question.
On April 17th, The Teacher’s Heart will be out, tell me… do you want it?