This piece (below) by Bernhard Guenther about the importance of doing our Work – before coming into a relationship but also within – strikes a chord.
I’ve worked with both men and women who crave a partner committed to their own healing and pulled by the desire to grow and evolve. But if missing within the relationship, the exquisite pain of that unshared desire can sometimes be too much for the relationship to bear.
What stays hidden and unhealed can create a corrosive toxicity of unmet needs and reactive behaviours, keenly felt by both people, but for different reasons. The challenge is – can you completely accept and allow who the other person is? And if so, what do you need to be at peace?
The question that often comes up: how can we know when it is a true love/soul mate connection, as opposed to the circumstances suggesting that it’s a set-up/counterfeit soul mate (love bite) connection, as Eve Lorgen called it? Is there any hope for true love in a world dominated by Matrix programs?
Of course there is – however, people involved in seeking truth (and doing the work to help raise consciousness and awareness, especially about topics that are far outside the mainstream and challenge status quo opinions) need to be extra-aware and cautious when it comes to their love relationships, making sure that their chosen partner is collinear in both purpose and path.
To be collinear is to be truly on the same page – having a common unspoken understanding about the basics of our human existence, and possessing a genuine foundation of shared integrity to build on while respecting each other’s individuality. Most importantly, both partners need to have been engaged in sincere self-work for a significant period of time on their own, prior to becoming involved in a committed, co-creative love relationship.
Psychotherapist David Richo suggests in his book “How to Be an Adult in Relationships” that both partners should have done at least 50% of the necessary self-work on their own before committing to a genuine relationship. So when do we know that we have reached 50% of our self-work goal? According to his definition, this ‘milestone’ is achieved when a state of awareness is discovered wherein we are able to recognize the activation of personal triggers without subsequently reacting to them in any way and both partners are able to hold space for each other without falling into the blame/victim trap but helping each other to work through these shadow aspects.
This indicates the development of the objective, mindful observer (and concurrent evolution of emotional intelligence) – to be able to work through issues (as they come up) without taking any issue personally… to avoid getting lost in reactionary behavior. It also means that one is able to differentiate between unfulfilled childhood needs (which cannot be expected to be satisfied via a partner’s loving support) and one’s healthy adult needs that are based upon the true self.
Having said that, it’s often the case that – once we immerse ourselves in an intimate love relationship – our old wounds and unfulfilled childhood needs are brought to the surface and revealed to us in ways that were previously imperceptible and were only able to come up in relationship (hence self-work by oneself has its limitations). In other words, relationships are lessons in love, forgiveness, and growth, as opposed to simply being an ‘end-in-themselves’.
So a middle ground approach towards this life choice applies: having the wisdom to avoid impulsively jumping into relationships (especially out of a fear of being ‘alone’) whilst also not falling into the isolation trap (and shunning relationships altogether). The lessons gleaned from traveling the mirror of relationship path are different for each of us.
What do you think? What’s your experience been?
(More here on knowing when it’s time to do your Work).