One thing that this writer finds quite amusing is the fact that even though the year is now 2020, a lot of the messages around relationships still stay rooted in the 1950’s.
What do I mean by this? Well, when people get together, as that relationship generally grows the conversation between those people and the societal expectation is that the other person becomes your everything. As in, you get everything you have ever wanted in life from that one person.
Now in no other aspect of life is this normal. People don’t really expect to get complete fulfilment from their jobs or even their friendships. However, when it comes to relationships, if you don't feel as though that person is ticking all your boxes, that’s seemingly reasonable grounds for breaking-up.
But what if we started to treat relationships like the other aspects of our lives? What if instead of demanding our partner give us complete satisfaction all the time, people selected (as an example) the top three things they can’t live without in a relationship? So, they could be: physical connection, someone who makes you laugh and someone who shares the same interests as you.
I recently heard a conversation discussing this very topic, and it may really help you re-frame your current and future relationships.
Now, I am not saying that you only get to pick your top three things and then if something else is missing from your relationship you have to suck it up, rather I am saying don’t hold your partner accountable for giving you absolutely everything you need.
So what does it mean if you listed the top three above and being emotionally supported is also important to you? There are of course a few options to you. You can talk to your partner about how you need more emotional support (this is always a good course of action) or you may find you can actually get what you’re looking for elsewhere. You can have a coffee with a girlfriend or talk about your work stress with a colleague as an example.
This may lead to the discovery that you start getting more emotional support from your partner or you may find that by opening up to a friend you have that need met in a different way. This isn’t really the point however. The main point is that potentially why people experience relationship dissatisfaction, and maybe even break-ups, is because they are framing their relationships wrong.
In my opinion, no one person is going to give you everything you need, so why put that pressure on them? Also, why put that pressure on yourself to get everything from one person? You may find that by highlighting your top three, or five, or 10 (the numbers don’t matter) you may even start to remembering why you picked your partner in the first place.
Because personally, I think that highlighting why your partner was what you wanted, is far more powerful than focusing on what they’re lacking, and I think it could do wonders for the longevity of relationships.
What do you think of this theory?