Most of us in our lives do both, we pull things apart and we put things back together again. This is also the way of relationships. Sometimes we have such hurt feelings we have to separate from our mate. And then other times we feel the loneliness of that separation and want to be together again, so we make our way to our partner.
There is nothing uncommon about the actions described above, but if we want to have a smoothness in our relationships, we might want to look at what we do to separate, and what we do when we want to rejoin.
Because when we know our actions and can look at the effects they have on our partners, then we can evaluate if they are working or if we want to do something different. This is about growing our awareness and using it to benefit the relationship.
Most of us, by the time we choose a mate, have spent our lives figuring out how to be ourselves. Often it takes a while to just know who we are and what we will do when we need something or have to do something.
These are very unique and individual skills, and we all know that we are not the same as anyone else on the planet. So, when we meet our mate, we are pretty sure we know who we are, and we are probably comfortable about some of our ways too.
Often when people get their feelings hurt they take what happened to them and re-run it through their brain again and again. Sometimes we can see that we should have said something different, and sometimes we just get madder and madder.
This situation happens in all our relationships, especially with the people we are really close to. I know that when I used to get mad at my partner I would just “stew” over what happened. It was as if I was marinating in the juices of what was done to me.
The more I sat in the stew the madder I got. You see how this works? We get our feelings hurt, something normal that happens in relationships, and then we run it through our minds over and over and over.
When we are in a relationship we can easily tell when our feelings get hurt. Since there is just another person it is quite obvious that we can pinpoint who did what to us and made us feel bad.
Then most of us try and get our partners to realize they hurt us and to stop doing the thing that caused the pain. This is very common with couples. But if you are the person who is often being told they are hurting their mate; you might begin to feel that you are not fully loved.
Criticism in relationships is incredibly common. Wonder why? All of us in a relationship like things the way we like them. Including how our partners act. We like them not to embarrass us and we like them to talk to us pleasantly. As humans we prefer things that please us. This is entirely normal.
But as someone who is sensitive to criticism, I know how terrible it feels when someone points out what you do not do well. It hurts some of us to our core. We can’t help it, that’s just the way some of us are wired.
All of us in our relationships have reservations. What I mean is that all of us at some time or another will withhold our complete affection, love and joy from our mate because we have something that is unfinished. These are the reservations I am talking about.
And when we have these areas that we withhold from our mate we often answer questions with “Yes”, but there is often a catch. We add a “but”. It could sound something like, “Will you go to the beach with me?” “Yes I will go, but last time we went you did such and such, and I don’t want to go if you are going to act that way.”
Do you get what I am talking about? When we agree with our mate we say yes. When we add a but we are giving them an excuse as to why the yes is not solid. This is a habit that I encounter many times in my office when I work with couples.
I was talking to a potential client for couples counseling when she asked me if I would be giving her a prescription to follow in order to get better.
I was stunned for a moment and I think in all my years of counseling I have never been asked this. But I do know there is absolutely no way to understand a couple without meeting them, and I don’t have any idea what would be helpful for them, because there is no one size fits all plan for couples.
All of us in a relationship have felt unsure about how stable our relationship really is at one time or another. This is very common with people who join each other with love and sometimes feel that love change in some ways that makes them feel uncomfortable.
Many of us who make it through these unstable parts can look back and be glad we did. But for others who wonder if they will ever get past the uneven stages here is some advice.
No one knows whether your relationship will last. But one thing that does help is if one of the partners says to the other when things get rough, “Don’t worry baby, we will work this out.”