Relationships are complex.
At times it almost seems impossible to ever make them work … and then there are those moments when being with your partner is the most amazing thing in the world.
Your time together is filled with unity, friendship, harmony, love and intimacy and you can’t get enough of each other.
I believe it is this experience of togetherness that has us come back for more, again and again and again.
Why is it so hard to keep the closeness? Why can we not make it work all the time?
In part it’s due to our complex human nature. We have unrealistic expectations when going into a relationship, we believe that we are meant to live happily ever after and we are unaware of our differences.
In truth, men and women are not the same. We are built differently, we think differently, we don’t speak the same language and we don’t understand things the same way. Regardless of this, men and women try very hard to make each other more similar. This causes an enormous amount of conflict, pain and misunderstandings.
Yet, in the beginning it all starts out so well. You can’t get enough of our partner and happily make things work for him. He listens, you talk, and the dishes are done together. If there are little misunderstandings here and there, you are convinced that things will get better in the future. Over time the romance wears off and a more habitual boyfriend emerges. This comes as a surprise: “We used to talk for hours and he really understood me. But now he does not even listen to me anymore.” “I thought she liked watching football with me. Now she gets upset every time I turn on the TV.”
At this point of the relationship most people try really hard to get their perfect partner back. In reality, he was never perfect to begin with. We all have our weaknesses, tempers, opinions, and attitudes. The only person that can satisfy every single one of your needs, keep things exactly the way you like them, say the things you want to hear and never, ever leave their underwear on the bathroom floor, is you.
In a relationship you can’t control your man nor can you change him into what you want him to be. On the contrary, by trying to do so he will want to resist even more. The only thing you can do is accept him for who he is without conditions.
What else can you do?
- Love yourself ~ Some people are in relationships because they are afraid to be alone. If you can’t love yourself, you can’t possibly love somebody else. Be courageous and get to know yourself. You are the most amazing being on this planet. Start accepting yourself for who you are, for your strengths and for your weaknesses. Be your very own best friend.
- Accept the differences ~ This is easier said than done. We assume other people are like us and get flustered when they are not. Accept that we are different. He does not like to talk in the morning? Don’t talk to him in the morning. He does not want to watch the same movies? Find someone who does. Only if we accept our differences can we create the space to understand each other.
- Be interested ~ Stay curious and don’t take things for granted. Who is this person that can give you so much joy and such heartache? What does he like, what are his dreams, how can you get closer to him? If you can stay curious, if you don’t already know who the other person is, life will become magical.
- Be honest ~ Being honest takes courage. Start out with being honest with yourself. What do you really want? Stop acting nice and don’t pretend to be someone you are not. It’s not easy to appreciate someone who is playing games of deception. You don’t have to put on an act to get what you want, just ask for it.
- Keep learning ~ Unfortunately we don’t learn how to have a great relationship in school or growing up. Do your homework. Take a seminar, get a coach, read and learn online or in books. You will find tons of information that can help you in better understanding both yourself and him. Below I am listing a few books that have really helped me and I hope they are valuable for you as well.
All the best of luck to you and as always, thank you for reading.
Brain Sex: The Real Difference Between Men And Women by Anne Moir and David Jessel
Men Like Women Who Like Themselves by Steven Carter and Julia Sokol
How To Succeed With Men by David Copeland and Ron Louis
Photo Credit: Edman Pl via Free Images