Embracing each other’s perspective - secret to joyful relationship

Embracing each other’s perspective - secret to joyful relationship

a ‘doable’ tip to strengthen your relationship…

by Dr Parul Bansal

Humans are social beings. We are born because our parents share a relationship. We are born into a world of relationships — as son/daughter, grandchild, brother/sister, niece/nephew. And we continue to form relationships with several people throughout lives. Love relationships satisfy our fundamental psychological needs to be cared for, stimulated, belong. Being with loved partner give us a sense of protection and identity. It protects us from the painful experiences of loneliness and isolation. We all want to be in relationships with those who are like us and in which are liked. Haven’t we all heard of the age old adage — ‘Birds of a feather flock together’. Need for acceptance and validation in relationships is a powerful need. Differences and disagreements makes one feel disliked and reduces a sense of belonging together.

However, because of our deep seated desires for fusion and merger with our partner, we often fail to acknowledge a very important fact of human existence — we all are separate, unique individuals. Every person has ways of thinking, emotional feelings, ways of responding to situations, likes and dislikes that are unique to him or her. Our ways can overlap with other but they are not likely to fully converge. No matter, how close we feel to each other, there is always an element of separateness. This awareness is painful and is often avoided. This leads to power struggles over changing others to meet one’s own needs and shaping them as one’s own self. After all, to be in relationships where the partner is like us and even if there are differences, it is just about the kind that we find exciting and acceptable, is the dream for all of us.

This dream gets a rude wake up call when the differences go past the threshold of liking and acceptability; when disagreements weigh out agreements. The bitter power struggle ensues involving guilt-tripping and shaming each other. It is at such moments that an emotional acceptance of separateness of two beings can save the day! A respectful acceptance that each person is on one’s own journey of life, experiencing and learning at one’s own pace and in one’s own way gives space to everyone to grow. Embracing one’s own self, its needs, its excitement, its sorrows as your own and managing them in your own way goes a long way in reducing dependency on others. Allow yourself to grow and provide an equal space to your partner too. Perhaps, one day both of you will grow to see each other’s perspectives joyfully.

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