This is one of a few quotes that really irritate me.
First of all, quotes are some statements made by different people based on their personal view-points, opinions, situations and life in general. Like one size does not fit all, one quotation cannot be true completely or suit all.
Secondly, quotations are mostly one-liners or a paragraph which are generally not backed up by an explanation on why they have been written, so, they create a lot of misunderstandings about their exact meaning. Like digit 6 can be read as 9 when inversed or when read by two people standing in opposite directions, the same goes with such quotations.
Thirdly, coming to this particular quotation, it is not even a quotation as such. It is just a line, from a novel which I am sure is beautifully written and, must have it’s backing in the novel itself. This quote actually refers to one’s potential in relationships. Here, the word ‘potential’ means how a person is thought to be behaving in the future by a person who has been seeking that first mentioned person as a partner considering his/her probable qualities to come to the fore in the expecting person’s view-point. It has not talked about the general potential of anybody as a person outside from the expectation of a relationship.
Fourthly, considering it even as an expected potential in a person about his/her qualities regarding relationship, it sounds a demeaning quote that says that one ‘has to date their reality’. Here, what if somebody does not even know one’s reality? What if one person’s own judgement is wrong about the outer world in general because of their internal biases? Be it in relationships or otherwise, if one person cannnot accept other’s flaws, then that person really does not deserve anyone to be with them when they themself show their own flaws. And, nobody is flawless.
Last but not the least, this line is actually meaning to reiterate to somebody that whom they like actually currently does not deserve them and that person should not let his/her good view-point about that person over-power what that person is actually showing them (which can actually be bad traits).
I get irritated with quotes because of their incapacity to make things clear due to lack of explanation, desire to create more of confusions, and still pressing them upon others as something of eternal value.