When We Wish Our Partner Were Different


We may wish our partner were different in some way.

Many of us in relationships dream of having the perfect life with our mate. But how many of us actually wish that our partners were different? I bet there are a number of us.

We Often Wish We Could Change Something About Them

We might sorely wish our partner presented themselves better, drank less alcohol, or would stop holding a weird fish all the time, like the woman pictured.

This is when we know in our minds what kind of partner we want. We look at our current mate and we think, “If only they would be like this, or do these things, then everything would be perfect.”

This is not unusual at all. When we find the person we want to love we might have been wishing for this for a long time. We might have even wished that this person would look and act a certain way too.

This is totally normal. But when we actually get into a relationship with our person we try and make them become what we have always wished for. I know I did this in the beginning of my relationship with my husband.

We Want Our Partner to Like What We Like

It's natural to wish our partner enjoyed the same things we do.

I always thought this man was so smart, and because I am an extrovert, I just assumed that because I liked these things, he would like them too. I wasn’t aware that he was not an extrovert and he is more of an introvert.

I thought he would love my friends and my associates and all that. But that was not the case. He loved me, and he didn’t need all the others. But I didn’t understand this because I thought if I love something then he would love it too.

This is how many of us approach our relationships. We love what we love and we just assume that our partner will love these things too. It is true that there are many things that we have in common, but our interactions with the world are completely different.

I love to be around people. My husband likes people but he doesn’t need them in the way that I do. It took me a while to learn that my husband was very different from myself. And that is what is important here.

We Need to Remember We’re Different People–And That’s Okay!

There are two different people in a given relationship, and those differences are okay.

Often it is true that two people who fall in love feel like one person. But really, they are two of you. Know what you like and love. This is very important for you to know yourself.

Also learn your partner. Learn what makes them happy and whole and what they like and don’t like.

When we understand our partner and we understand ourselves even though we are different, we do not get provoked when we like something and they don’t. We learn to accept our partners the way they are, because if we keep wishing they would become someone different, well we are telling them that we don’t love them the way they are.

And that is the worst pain to feel, that you aren’t enough.


Want to Bring More Understanding to Your Relationship?

Read a Book About Relationships

'Safe. Happy. Loved. Simple Skills for Your Relationship.' A book by Linda Nusbaum.

If you’d like to better understand each other and meet each other’s needs, try reading Linda’s book Safe. Happy. Loved. Simple Skills for Your Relationship. It just might help you communicate more effectively and more openly, helping the two of you get in touch with what each of you are looking for. Give it a read.

Get Couples Counseling

Come in for couples counseling. Couples counseling can help you and your loved one get the most out of your relationship. It'll equip you with coping strategies and tools for communication that can help you argue less and love more.

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