There’s a lot of great folks doing a wonderful job with parental relationships, be they with a parent or child. However, I wonder why our love relationships are so fraught with ineffective, inauthentic communication and a lack of the kind of work it takes to have relational sustainability? It seems that parental relationships are perceived to be easier due to the inherent power differential. But, there seems to be a lack of will when it comes to working on ourselves so we can be accessible to, and accepting of, each other.
Maintaining a relationship where individuals become egalitarian partners seems to be beyond the pale. It seems that we tend to compete instead of collaborate; become resistant rather than accepting the fact that there will most likely, only be about 80% of the person we like and 20% we don’t, but decide to accept. We’ve got a lot of work to do on ourselves in order to change this, and going back to the “way things used to be” isn’t the answer. I would posit that love for self will lead us to make effective relational choices. When I love myself, I can love someone else because I already have a standard by which to decide what is humane treatment and what is not. When I accept myself without judgement, I can do the same for my partner. I don’t look for anything near perfection in my partner because I know I don’t bring that unrealistic expectation to my own life.
Humility, acceptance and trust seem to be more attractive aspects rather than tight abs and a bangin’ body! Of course, all of these issues need to be addressed BEFORE we make a commitment. But then, that would require an entire paradigmatic shift in the way we approach potential romantic relationships. Maybe she’s NOT a potential partner because she’s “drop dead gorgeous?” Maybe he’s NOT a potential partner because he’s attained an above average economic status? Dr. Phil is correct:
“The success of a relationship is a function of the extent to which it meets the needs of two people,”
This statement begs the question: Whose needs do you want to meet? THAT’S the person you should BE with romantically. THAT’S your potential romantic partner. Life is so short. Relationships really can be sweet. Seems pretty simple to me……. #LoveIsEverything
PEACE! – Dr. Kim