If we really look at our behavioral patterns,
we can begin to see our parents in them...
All through our childhoods, we are glaringly and subtly conditioned to learn behaviors that our parents believed were right or that they inherited from their parents. This is not to say that no parents really had it together. Some did. On the other hand, most of our adult issues come from childhood, during which we were molded to fit the expectations of others often at the expense of our true natures.
What we need to remember is that, while many of the values they taught us were good ones, we nonetheless have lives of our own and truths that are ours.
Parent issues are some of the worst and most longstanding issues we can have. If we didn't feel nurtured as a child (therefore still don't as an adult), we might look for a mother figure. If we never got enough, if any, of our father's attention, we might look for men whom we can look up to and who can give us what we think we need: approval, validation, value, or worse, someone to shoulder responsibility for us so we don't have to.
The truth is, once again, that no one can give us those things but us.
Dump Your Parent Issues (They Are Messing Up Your Life!)
Parent dynamics in a relationship are more common than you might think. They are some of the most difficult to surpass because they are so ingrained in our subconscious. When children do not have what they need, they spend the rest of their lives trying to change that. After they become adults, their attempts to find those missing pieces can create sets of behaviors and dynamics between people that are frustrating and even painful. The most important advice is not to play into the parent role, which can easily sneak up on you.
Whatever the issues or origins, all of them can be overcome with self-honesty and an honest effort to dissociate from habitual patterns. Once identified, the vulnerabilities and their protracted issues can be alleviated.
The greatest awareness of all is being able to recognize these issues in us or in others — and not playing them. Becoming aware of and willing to change our habitual and dysfunctional behaviors, and understanding and choosing to relate differently with those of our partners, can be the beginning of an entirely new and different type of relationship.
The Bottom Line for Healthy Relationships
If we haven't dealt with our inner issues, we will carry them into every relationship we have.
Get The Latest From InnerSelf
We have to leave room in any relationship for both parties to maintain their personal interests and sense of individuality. We need time to explore our curiosities, to revitalize our senses of excitement. Ultimately, when both partners are free to be who they are, the interest in a relationship is ongoing. There is more to talk about, and the relationship can expand in its depth at a natural rate. Our sense of self is vital to our functioning and healthfulness. When we lose that, we have no resources from which to work.
We must be willing not only to communicate honestly, but also to listen well. Fairness and openness to new ideas and circumstances are very important.
A great relationship has passion, not just in the bedroom, but also in life. My suggestion is make regular dates with each other and do new and different things. Don't always go to the same places; that gets boring. Plan getaways regularly, if possible, or even try weekends with a theme.
Be willing to gracefully accept for yourself as much as you give. If you don't, you are robbing your partner of the joy of giving to you. Know you have value that is infinite!
Have no expectations, as they will only set you up for disappointment. Stay in the now, not what was or might be. Be willing to be flexible with your partner. Schedules change, as do interests and focus. Be willing to go with the flow no matter what.
Do not judge your partner in comparison to yourself. You are two different people who came together to complement each other. Honor your friends, lovers, family, and children as the priceless treasures they are!
Stay present in all your relationships. Don't go looking for problems . . . and don't ask everyone else about your relationship. Keep it between you and your partner. Many relationships are torn apart once others start injecting their two cents. Trust your partner. Be sensitive to what is happening inside you and what those in your relationships are experiencing. Be connected.
Be happy! Don't always look for what you don't have. Be now and find the positive in everything around you. Everything that you need is on the inside. No one else can give you what you don't give yourself.
Relationships don't just happen. They blossom with the participation of those involved. Be strong when necessary and soft every moment that you can. Stay in your heart, especially when your fears rear up to bite you.
Love deeply your friends, spouses, lovers, partners, your children. Love with all that you are, but first of all, love yourself just as you are. You are an amazing, perfect, whole human being just as you are!
Exercise: Examining My Motivations for Relationship
Ask yourself what it is that you seek in others. What traits do you look for in your friends and love relationships? Write them down. Once you have identified the traits in others, ask yourself if you acknowledge the very same ones in yourself. Write this down as well.
Look at your answers carefully! If you don't recognize these traits within you, look at why. What is it that you feel you need from other people that you don't already have? As you discover each of the traits you feel you lack, look at various ways to apply them to your life experience from your own internal resources. Find ways to use these traits in your life.
©2009, 2012 by Meg Blackburn Losey, Ph.D. All rights reserved.
Reprinted with permission of the publisher, Weiser Books,
an imprint of Red Wheel/Weiser, LLC. www.redwheelweiser.com
The Art of Living Out Loud: How to Leave Behind Your Baggage and Pain to Become a Happy, Whole, Perfect Human...
by Meg Blackburn Losey Ph.D.
Master healer and metaphysical teacher Meg Losey experienced her own life crisis in which she lost everything -- her house, her business, and her relationship and was forced to learn how to accept this devastating situation. In The Art of Living Out Loud, she describes how she learned to live an authentic life, from this traumatic experience. She guides readers through the process of coming clean with ourselves, accepting who we are, discovering our purpose and developing the courage to embody it.
About the Author
Meg Blackburn Losey, Ph.D., a national and international keynote speaker, is the host of Cosmic Particles internet radio show. She is the author of the bestselling The Secret History of Consciousness, Parenting the Children of Now, Conversations with the Children of Now, the international bestseller The Children of Now, Crystalline Children, Indigo Children, Star Kids, Angels on Earth and The Phenomenon of Transitional Children, Pyramids of Light, Awakening to Multi-dimensional Reality and the Online Messages. She is also a contributor to The Mystery of 2012 Anthology and a regular contributor in many magazines and other publications. Visit her website at www.spiritlite.com.