Nothing is so boring as devotion Hercule Poirot’s Christmas Agatha Christie

I remember Grease– I remember that Sandy being devoted to Danny really didn’t do anyone any good- Danny didn’t become intrigued till Sandy had dated the jock and went all leather no lace.

So…

What do you think about when you think devotion?

If someone says they are devoted to you, do you think:

  1. Aww shucks how sweet
  2. Hmmm- this level of devotion- is this a true crime podcast about to happen?
  3. all this fawning is getting a little- yawn- boring
  4. I’m the luckiest person alive

What does devotion really mean? Does it mean that they will follow you without question? That they worship you? That they will spend their life trying to make your life better?

I can’t help it. I think there’s something a little creepy about one saying to another that they’re devoted. It almost goes over the top for me- do I want someone who just follows my lead without question? Or do I want someone who challenges me when I say something inane?

“Challenges me” for 100 Alex…

Don’t get me wrong- there are times when what I say makes logical sense and is clearly the more correct path and I want my Husband to listen to me and follow my guide…But…when I’m acting like a less than rational person, I need someone to reel me in…

Utter devotion is a very bad road to walk down…

Do I want my husband to have my back? Yes- unless I’ve been completely out of line…

Do I have my daughter’s back? Yes- unless she is doing something that is very damaging to herself or another.

Am I devoted to my closest friends? Yes- they can count on me right up until they hand me the shovel – I’m hoping I talk them out of it before there are bodies to bury…

Pick any aspect of this post and discuss away. I want to know what devotion means to you.

52 thoughts on “Devotion

  1. The time when I believe devotion is an admirable quality is when it is demonstrated by one party within a couple to the other when that other needs their kindness or care. The obvious example is an elderly couple, but it can also be seen when one party is ill or infirm and depends on the other for support – either practical or emotional. I’m not here for the blindly following and being unquestioning, but I’ll have me a big slice of kindness and caring.

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  2. My interpretation of devotion is slightly different from your definition. I agree that in Grease it was strictly the stuff of movie magic. And the song Hopelessly devoted comes to mind. It sounds great when you sing it, however nobody should be hopelessly anything. But what is REAL devotion? To me that’s totally different. Real devotion is more than just a movie script. It’s not a love struck young girl or guy.

    My first husband one might say, was definitely NOT devoted since he cheated on me and we divorced over it. We married in 1969 when we were just 20. But, I’m not sure how devoted any 20 year could actually be . However, over 50 years later when my son told him I had cancer, he started calling me frequently, visits when he’s down in Florida, and constantly texts me to check on me. He thanks me frequently for always allowing him to be apart of our sons life and for never holding a grudge for his foolish behavior when he was young.. So ironically, while he wasn’t a devoted husband in his 20’s, he IS a devoted friend in his 70’s. Does devotion come with age? Perhaps for some people.

    My second husband died of pancreatic cancer. I was a devoted wife and cared for him the best I could. That’s all one can do when someone is terminal. Let them know they are loved. And be there for them to hold their hand.
    I didn’t realize until I got sick how devoted my sons were to me. My local son rearranges his work schedule at the drop of a hat around my medical needs. ( like today he’s taking me this morning to the oncologist). I never asked for him to do any of that, he just does it. My son who lives out of state calls and visits often and has told me that he has set it up with his bosses that if I go back into surgery, or need him, he can leave immediately no matter what they are filming. I told him he didn’t have to and yet it’s his choice. So he apparently is devoted too. I had no idea what awesome and how devoted my kids were. So what is devotion? Faithfulness? Love? Kindness? Caring? I guess it is Being there when someone you care about needs you. Not stalking a crush. Not smothering someone. Just letting them know when you can, that you care or helping them when they need someone to lean on. .

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    1. There’s just something about devotion that leads me down the Danny and Sandy route. And like in the case of the book…do people take advantage of those “devoted” to them? I believe in loving fully, and creating a partnership, but if someone said they were devoted to me I’d be wary. But that’s me

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  3. According to Google, the definition of devotion is “love, loyalty, or enthusiasm for a person, activity, or cause.” There is nothing in that definition that implies supporting foolishness or blind support. In fact, love is about caring for someone in a healthy way. I think of devotion as a good thing.

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    1. The word devotion just sounds cult like to me, when applied to people. I could say I’m devoted to ending illiteracy…but as to a person I’m not so sure. I think devotion goes beyond loyalty or enthusiasm

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      1. I think , LA you might be confusing obsession with devotion. When someone becomes obsessed they lose control of their emotions. They go overboard on everything. Being devoted involves concern and caring. Someone with an obsession goes beyond caring. They leave behind rationality or reason and obsess. Just like someone with OCD checks a locked door ten times when the rest of us lock up, maybe double check once but then move on. Someone with OCD is compulsive and out of control. Here’s a poem by a former student it describes obsession….

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      2. I think devotion and obsession are more synonymous. It’s like what Claudette said…devotion smacks of infatuation. If someone told me they were devoted to me I think I’d question it.

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  4. If I’m devoted I will go above and beyond for you or the cause, perhaps without consideration for myself and my own well-being. I get the creepiness factor as well. If you are unable to self-regulate then just how far would or could you go…

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    1. There’s something about the word that makes me think it’s one step too far with regards to personal relationships. I’m ok with it for religion, or for a cause…but people not so sure

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  5. Maybe devotion in your view feels more like infatuation?

    I’ve been infatuated a few times (don’t recommend). I think devotion in relationships has elements of infatuation, perhaps…

    What if you use the term in non-relationship scenarios? Can you be devoted to launching a business, publishing a book, completing a project, committing to an exercise routine?

    To me devotion has varying definitions based on context.

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  6. There’s a fine line between nitpicking and nuance LA, and if you say you conjure cult when contemplating the meaning of devotion, I’m not gonna argufy…but take me and Susan…now together 34 years…and I’ll give you 6 to 5 and pick ‘em… is my devotion to her, our relationship…or both…I’d bet on the real world of the latter.

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  7. Interesting topic – Like Ally Bean, I think of it more in terms of religion and TBH, I’m skeptical when someone brings it up too much in that context. As for relationships, especially family, I’m okay with the term, but more in the sense of acting on it, not talking about it. I think the minute you declare you have a devoted family member, or that you are devoted to them, it sets things up for disappointment or creates resentment among the non-labeled ones. I don’t know, just my opinion.

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  8. If it’s hopeless devotion, I think of Olivia Newton John. In which case, we have circled back to “Grease.”

    I’ve never considered devotion as anything other than sweet, so I side most with option 1. Interesting how people equate it with religion. Heathen that I am, that never crossed my mind.

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      1. That’s ok I’ve always liked that song and all the songs from Greece. Great music! One year while teaching to raise money for our school the teachers dressed up as characters from Greece and we all sang and did the hand jive. So it’s all good! ❤️✌️

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  9. You know LA I really thought about your question today because my comments were uniquely different from yours and usually we are pretty aligned. And in reading varying answers many people spoke of devotion as being purely religious. And then I thought that that perhaps my take on devotion which was mostly about family was indeed related to my faith and my upbringing. So I googled your question regarding Judaism. This answer made me understand why I see devotion as a family thing.

    “In Jewish families, parents and children are responsible for each other as a way of honouring God. Parents are seen as partners in God’s creation of each human being, so to honour one’s parents is to honour God.”
    So perhaps that explains why it was natural for me to feel devoted to my parents and then to my husband and children. And why both my sons naturally are devoted to me. I never demanded or even expected it. However, my behavior must have encouraged them to perform and act in that manner. It became especially evident during cancer treatment. Perhaps caring on the traditions of my ancestors influenced me and thus my children. I am not sure. I thank you for continually making me think beyond the norm.
    During this time in my life your questions keep me using my brain and rekindle my thought process. Wednesday when I go back into chemotherapy my brain will be fuzzy and I’ll once again get my chemo rash, mouth blisters, nausea etc. But knowing I can read your blog and THINK amidst that clouded chemo addled brain of mine brings me great pleasure and much gratitude! I thank you! ❤️

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  10. Hmm. This is not a word that ever trips off my tongue. Nor do I hear it from others. I suppose if devoted is synonymous for you with obsession, that would make it a bad thing. Maybe that Grease thing just got your head turned. No more ear worms for today!

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  11. Devotion isn’t a word that’s used much. Adored, loved, cherished, yep… but to me devoted smacks of old age. Like, they’ve been together fifty years and they’re devoted to each other. Doesn’t suggest there aren’t spats though.

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  12. My husband revealed that he’s devoted to me. He says it’s beyond love. When he first said this, it sounded like a bit much and I couldn’t quite put my finger on why. What you’ve said here is helpful. It is a little creepy, and maybe I’ll explore what he means by that.

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