I have a lot to say about this Shadam business. I feel like it’s a complicated situation that fandom is oversimplifying. That being said, I do understand the protectiveness towards Shiro. An ultimatum is killer of relationships and it’s easy to mark someone who brings one up as having selfish motives. And who the hell would wanna break up with Shiro? He’s a fantastic man who is gentle and kind and ultimately unselfish, a born leader who looks out for his troops, a dreamer who wanted nothing less than to see the stars.
We all love Shiro so much, and I don’t doubt for a single second that Adam loved him even more.
Now, we still really don’t know the context of their breakup. We see this Adam guy for a whole ten seconds and we have interviews telling us that these two were gonna tie the knot eventually. So what I have to say kinda goes off this information. So it’s not really meta because I haven’t seen the episode, I just wanted to make my two cents known. Fandom demonizing Adam for breaking up with Shiro I feel is oversimplified and unfair. I think it’s a lot more complicated than that because that’s just how life is. It can be very unfair sometimes.
First of all, these two weren’t just boyfriends. They were going to get engaged, they were going to get married one day. They were in it for the long haul. They probably lived together, paid bills together, they were literally building a life together, marriage was just gonna give them tax breaks and make it nice and official. Rocks on their fingers to make all the neighbors jelly. And when your relationship is that deep, that long term like till death do you part shit, it’s even more complicated. Because at that point, every decision you make not only affects you, but your partner alongside you. That’s why communication is so important, why compromises make and break relationships, why people constantly talk about meeting in the middle.
Unfortunately, life is complicated and rude and there are times where you can’t meet in the middle, and a sacrifice has to be made. And for some people that sacrifice can be just too much to ask, no matter how much you love a person.
Let me tell you a little personal story. If you’re a bro of mine, you already know this but for those who don’t know: for the past year, my husband has been away overseas. He left for Korea July of 2017 while I stayed in the States with our daughter. Long story short, it has been a very long, very rough year. Not a day goes by that I don’t miss him, and some days it gets so bad that I don’t even feel like getting out of bed. It literally feels like grief, and I’ve experienced loss, too. Due to time differences, I only really get to speak to him over Xbox on the weekends and even then for a few hours that feel much too short. There was even a point last winter where we became a bit distant from each other because it was too much.
Keep in mind that going to Korea for a year was something he volunteered to do. He was very unhappy being stationed in the States, he wanted a new base overseas. And in order to be guaranteed an overseas base, he would have to be away from his family for a year on an unaccompanied tour (where your dependents are not with you) in South Korea.
Last Christmas, there was an accident. He was hospitalized for a month with a traumatic brain injury. Due to me not having a passport and some other bureaucratic complications, I could not go to him to be by his side when he needed me the most.
Yes, I supported his decision to go. Didn’t make it any less rough. Didn’t prevent the fights we’ve had about this, the feelings of resentment and abandonment because at the end of the day, we’re just flawed human beings. And no amount of loving each other keeps those flaws from seeping in. Love can only repair those damages to a stronger foundation.
Adam’s response to Shiro going to Kerberos is an honest and human one. He cannot be blamed for his self-preservation. Some people are simply not made for this life. They don’t have it in them to make such sacrifices. Divorces in the military are high for this very reason, a lot of spouses just can’t handle their loved ones being away for six months to a year at a time with minimal contact. Hell, on particularly bad days, I don’t know how I have it in me to deal with my husband being away for so long. Just the other day, I learned that due to complications with our daughter’s medical clearance to our next duty station, he’s being delayed for another several weeks. He was supposed to be flying back home this coming Tuesday. How am I supposed to take that?
It’s hard. It’s so, so hard. It really is like grief.
Choosing to support my husband in this is my choice but one that comes at a great cost and a bit of regret, and I don’t blame a single person who takes one look at this life and says “nope”. And for Adam, that was too much. It was just simply too much.
Neither of them are at fault here. This was just an unfortunate case of where meeting in the middle isn’t good enough. I feel like Adam knew Shiro would never give up his dream of going to space, so he ended the relationship on his terms instead of waiting to hear the horrible news that his future husband that he had every intention of getting engaged to and marrying had died (and would you look at that). Or maybe he was that desperate to keep Shiro by his side no matter what. And he probably did feel like Shiro was choosing his career over him and not considering his feelings at all (I’ve certainly felt that way with this whole Korea business). And in the end, Adam responded the only way he knew how: an ultimatum.
People have said they are uncomfortable with the ultimatum, and they would be right. But this is an uncomfortable, messy situation. It’s the type of situation that has no happy ending, not without considerable cost and someone getting hurt. Life is uncomfortable and messy. Them’s the breaks.
Neither Shiro or Adam are wrong in this situation, and they are both justified in how they feel. No one is saying you have to like that things turned out that way, because it’s not a good situation. It’s not a comfortable situation. It’s not something you should like or be comfortable with. You can be angry that Adam presented Shiro this ultimatum and that’s justified, too. But you should also be fair. Some relationships, no matter how much love is involved, just aren’t meant to be. Sometimes, things just don’t work out.
The ultimate theme of Voltron is about love, and we’ve already seen in Zaggar what happens when love is taken too far, when it hurts more than it heals. Shiro and Adam probably both walked away from their relationship hurting and resentful, believing the other to be selfish and that’s why it all fell apart. I just hope maybe S7 will give them the closure a deep relationship such as theirs needs.
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