Happiness is a journey, not a destination.
Family relationships comprise a completely
different world than the one we see on television, read on book pages or hear
in songs. This is far from what we once were told by grandmother. This is not
something that we had in our children's long-living dreams.
The myth of the all-consuming, everlasting
and airy feeling gets its confirmation when once in youth each of us sees a
sample of a "model" feeling. Sooner or later we suddenly discover
what it means to fall in love. Lack of experience and an excessive false
information obtained from without, lead us to believe that these new sensations
will last interminably long without significant efforts from our side. But what
happens in the end? This feeling, letís call it infatuation, lasts at the
average from two weeks to six months, and then practically disappears without a
Infatuation leaves us for several reasons,
major of which is superiority of needs over our abilities. Now we are not so
obsessed with the desire to show partner best sides of us and weaknesses are
being exposed. We now less idealize our partner and all beautiful things that
we thought out in our dreams has just broken against the one real set of
qualities that this man or woman possesses. Now emotions got by your partnerís
side are not as striking as when you once threw up your business and rushed
headlong to meet him/her. Is it possible to avoid this?
At first let's look at what underlies
infatuation. In fact, INFATUATION ARISES WHEN THE DESIRE TO GET SOMETHING IS
GREATER THAN OUR ABILITY TO ACHIEVE THIS. Indeed, we do not fall in love with
everybody, but only those from whom we want to get something and for some
reason are not able to fully satisfy our need. What most people mean by saying
"I love you"? Typically, this phrase conceals two simple words:
"I want". Or, if we reduce these two words to one: "Give".
Thus, by saying "I love you" or the question with equivalent meaning
"Do you love me?" a person claims: "I have needs that only you
can fulfill. And until you do it, I'm willing to be helpful to you".
Very often at this point, sometimes sooner
or sometimes later, one of the partners becomes the leader and the other one -
the follower. Iím not talking of leadership in a classic psychological meaning.
I use this word pointing up the fact that usually one partner is more dependent
on the relationship itself and the other one is less dependent.
The leader is the person for whom the
thought about collapse of the relationship seems much less tragedic than for
the follower. The role of follower belongs to those who need much more
attention then they get, they want to spend much more time together, they wish
to have sex more often, and they want all these things much more than their
partner does. The following person is always emotionally dependent on the
leading person. In this situation he/she usually starts doing the same things
that he/she used to do at the initial stage of this very relationship or did
successfully in the other relationships.
Indeed, the affairs often begin with
courtship, long and frequent meetings, heightened attention. And such behavior
is usually fruitful at this stage since the needs of the partner exceed the
amount of investment he/she gets. But then one of the partners or both feel
saturated and former enthusiasm evaporates. The partner whose interest in this
respect is lower takes the emotional leadership in the relationship. The
leading person also has hard times since he or she does not understand what is
happening to him, why he cannot reciprocate any more the feelings of the person
he or she once needed so much, and why the partner's actions which he liked
before now cause just irritation. Often leading people feel guilty that
aggravates the situation even more.
However, once a leader feels that he is
losing control over relationship he either immediately changes his role into a
follower and his partner does vice versa, or emotional imbalance straightens
out, if the right corrective proportions have been selected. Here is an
Consider the situation where a leader and a
follower person split up. The follower feels sick at heart; he/she wants to
make the leader know his feelings, his anxieties, and his complaints. Leading
person, on the contrary, feels liberation; he/she enjoys the opportunity to get
away from all attempts of the follower to get closer while maintaining
confidence that at any time can restore the relationship. But as soon as he
gets to know that the follower has got a new partner things change
dramatically. The leaderís resources greatly decrease and can easily become
lower than his needs. In such case the leader may become a follower. He may
feel like he/she fell in love again. He/she would blame himself for his
stupidity, for not to appreciating what he/she possessed, for ruining his/her
happiness by his/her own hands. Often it happens that a follower "burns
out" and starts a new relationship with a new partner while his former
lifeís companion instantly becomes a follower and begins to pursue him/her.
The majority of people on our planet live
as if they are going to live forever: they donít learn by their own mistakes
made in the past and do not build long-term plans for the future. The
situations of the same type are being repeated in their lives again and again
but they donít make a serious effort to understand the laws of this world. As I
mentioned earlier it is tough to find reliable external sources to obtain
detailed information on love life. However, this does not deny the opportunity
to make logical conclusions basing on personal experience. Everyone has this
opportunity but not everyone has a desire to use it. Avoiding responsibility
takes one of the the leading places among the common unconscious benefits so
for many people is much easier to say that relationships and love could not be
put under a microscope and fully understood by a human.
All living beings, by order not lower than
mammals, have such psychological mechanisms as dependence, affection and
infatuation in their nature. And the question arises: ďWhat is the meaning of
love feeling from the viewpoint of nature?Ē From the perspective of procreation
instinct the dependence on a partner can seem useless. In fact, why should you
suffer dreaming of someone who ignores you when you can find someone just as
good who will reciprocate your feelings? I believe the answer to this question
lies in the requirement of higher order beings for parents to participate in
the upbringing of descendants. In addition, family as a system provides a
greater ability to survive not only for children but also for parents. This
state of things requires the creation of relationships which last much longer
than a normal sexual act. And such feelings as love and affection can provide
the best ground for this.
The famous American psychotherapist Dean C.
Delis offers the following list of questions in order to determine whether
there is an element of dependence in the relationships:
* Is one of the partners more jealous than the
* Does one of the partners usually wait for the
other to call or come home?
* May one describe one partner with the word
"good" and the other one with the word "bad"?
* Does one of the partners exert greater efforts
to maintain a conversation and communication in general?
* Does one partner say ďI love you" more
often than the other one?
* Is one of the partners more attractive to the
opposite sex than the other?
* Is one partner less affectionate after sex than
* Does one of the partners work more on the
relationship than the other?
* Does one of the partners tend to feel abandoned
at parties, while the other feels constrained and tense (or temporarily
* Is the career of one partner more successful
than that of the other?
* Does one of the partners tend to feel anxiety
and uncertainty in the relationship, while the other one takes things for
* Does one partner feel irritated by how the
other partner behaves in public?
* If you are not married does one partner raise a
question of mutual commitments and marriage more often than the other?
* If you are married does one partner raise a
question of kid birth (or second child) more often than the other?
* During the quarrels does one partner say to the
other words like "shrank into your shell", "selfish" or
"inconsiderate", while the other one accuses him/her of tenacious,
caviling and exigent behavior?
If you answered "yes" to some of
the abovementioned questions that means there is an element of emotional
imbalance in your relationship. The more positive answers you have the greater
extent, to which one partner is the leader and the other is the follower.
What can one advice to the leading person
in order to strengthen the relationships? Of course, pay maximum attention to
your partner's life, his interests and his needs. Make the effort to destroy
the huge steel wall erected around you. Sometimes force yourself to make a
mindblower for your partner. Let yourself have open and vivid emotions at home
within your family but not beyond it.
And what does it makes sense to do for a
follower to restore the emotional balance? Anything that will make him
gradually pass from the follower into the leader. Here are a few examples of
how to achieve this:
* Find a hobby that you will be greatly excited
* Involve yourself in personal, communication,
physical and career development;
* Flirt with other members of the opposite sex,
* Provide less physical availability;
* Propose role games within daily activities and
sex, take a leading position in them;
* Follow the principle: "if you're afraid -
don't do it, if you do - don't be afraid"; in your decisions go to the end
without changing the course trying to avoid risk;
* More actively, passionately and dominantly
behave in sex;
* Fight for just relationship, in which each
partner has equal number of rights, privileges and responsibilities.
* Practice finding something positive in every
* Find a source of consolation and communication
in external environment.
Emotional balance shift in the
relationships in your favor is one of the most effective manipulative
instruments successfully used by seducers for ages. Nothing attracts as much as
a sudden temperature change from warm to cold.
However, in order to construct a harmonious
relationship you should manage emotional balance carefully and deliberately,
look at the relationship as a partnerí alliance rather than a competition.
Perhaps the most successful formula is your coolness in response to your
partnerís estrangement and, vice versa, getting closer to your partner in the
case he/she starts to pay more attention to you.
I wonít be surprised if you are thrilled
with the idea that playing emotional balance shift is a panacea for all
problems in a relationship. In practice, itís not true. Decline in love passion
and the emotional imbalance are not the only things that cause crises in
relationships. Relationship may not get going for a thousand other reasons. Partners
may just be incompatible at each level of the three brains, i.e. the logical,
emotional, and instinctive, and as a result endure endless problems. Therefore,
you need to take into account that not every relationships should be saved.
However, any relationship can be improved by displaying desire and making
In fact the visible division of partners
into the leader and the follower usually occurs if from the very beginning the
interest of one partner in the development of relationship has been being
greater than that of the other. In those unions that develop in a more
harmonious way, it often happens that both partners become strongly
disappointed in the relationship, though, the interest of the leading person
will certainly be lower. At this very point, infatuation comes down and
relationships come to the next stage which I usually call adaptation.
Adaptation is a period when the partners begin to see each other in their true
light, actively quarrel and have it out with each other. All that is keeping
them together is the desire to preserve the beauty of the relationship they had
in the past. But in the end, they both cannot stand the situation and start
discussing and working out an appropriate decision about their future. This
decision may be either parting or attempt to make a fresh start. If you decided
to continue the relationship it is likely that pretty soon youíll face the
adaptation again and youíll have to return to the decision-making process. The
only option to successfully pass the adaptation stage is to agree on what each
partner will do to ensure that the old problems will not pop up again.
Of course, to get the desired outcome you
need to implement all things you agreed upon with your partner, otherwise the
adaptation will repeat again. In case the adaptation stage has been
successfully passed the relationship moves to the next stage, which I call
intimate connection. At this stage the couple finds a balance of emotional
control for their relationship. Such relationships are based on friendship,
mutual understanding and support. But once one of the partners loses former
self-confidence or, on the contrary, shows a rapid progress in
self-development, the relationship falls into an emotional imbalance trap and
the couple goes through adaptation once again. On the other hand, at the
intimate connection stage the relationship may be improved by wise actions,
including mindblowers which we shall discuss below.
Here is the scheme of long term relationship:
It is important for you to understand, that
love is not the result, not the outcome. Love is a never ending process, which
you can control by yourself. Building a harmonious relationship is a hard work.
But just like in many other areas of life it is a process to be repaid, and its
fruits bring us a large variety of positive emotions and make the life