Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Explore Your Ideas About Love

What are your ideas about love, romance, and relationships? Exploring your ideas about love and relationships can be beneficial, not only to you but to your partner. Not long ago I worked with a couple who were in the morass of the post- affair swamp of confusion, hurt, and anger. As part of their work they were encouraged to explore their ideas about love. Below is a short list they worked through and they each rated their own opinion as to what constitutes a ‘good relationship.’

Before you complete this, let me point out that many times my unrealistic expectations, not my partner, may be responsible for my dissatisfaction with the relationship. Here are the directions. Read each statement carefully and then answer accordingly

5 = I Strongly Agree
4 = I Agree
3 = I Moderately Agree
2 = I Slightly Agree
1 = I Do not agree

_______ "My partner and I should feel a deep, unspoken bond at-all times."

_______ "My partner should be able to anticipate my needs."

_______ "I shouldn't have to work for love."

_______ "I shouldn't have to work to be 'trusted."

_______ "I deserve to be loved."

_______ "The chemistry is either right or wrong."

_______ "My partner should love me unconditionally."

_______ "My partner should be emotionally available to me whenever I need him or her."

_______ "Love is a feeling that can't be forced or manufactured. It either exists or it doesn't"

_______ "A good marriage is free of conflict"

_______ ''If I'm not happy in my relationship, it's my partner's fault."

_______ "We shouldn't have to work at feeling sexual desire for each other; it should come naturally or not at all."

_______ '"When passion dies, so does the relationship."

This post-affair couple discovered that most of their pre-affair relationship was built upon illusions, myths, and sometimes even delusions. Of course you and I both know that that this faulty foundation did not cause him to go out and commit adultery…anyway, tally up your point total see how you faired.

Scoring Key:

  • If your score was between 45 and 65 you are living in the valley of illusion…not only are your glasses ‘rose colored’ your ‘head is probably in the sand’ as well!! You are being set up for ‘heart-ache heart- ache heart-ache.’ Your partner can not nor will ever live up to those expectations and of course neither do you!
  • If your score was between 26 and 44 you have some high expectations and hopefully you are slowly puncturing your balloon. If you don’t puncture it, someone or something else will. Use this time to truly understand yourself and your partner.
  • If you score is less than 26 then you have a fairly good grasp of love, love expectations, and reality. A relationship built on truth, honesty, and commitment has a chance to survive in this world and also is the most satisfying.
How are you in your relationships? Want to to read more? In Lies at the Altar: The Truth About Great Marriages, Robin Smith digs deeper into what makes good marriages great!

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