It is really hard to have a relationship in the present moment when you are focused on the trash of the past. Today’s relationship help offers insights to keep in mind when you’re tempted to turn around and focus on the past. When you do that, you are truly missing the relationship in front of you in this minute.
Recently I was providing relationship help toh a couple on Skype video. They said they wanted to recover the love, trust and respect they believed their relationship started with. That’s an excellent idea! The problem was that every time I asked a question about their present relationship, they referred to events in the past, some so far in the past that it was amazing they remembered. When I asked then each to describe their partner to me as they are today, they stumbled.
It’s a trash accumulation problem! Both partners had accumulated and saved–almost nurtured and cherished–each hurt, each misstep, each pain, each fault that they perceived in the other over their life together. It was no wonder they were miserable together. If you can only see who your partner isn’t and enjoy recounting the story of all the “s/he done me wrongs” and “ain’t it awfuls” then you are perpetuating your misery. I know. You feel justified.
So, would you rather feel justified in your anger, pain and disappointment, or open to love, change and possibilities?
Oh, yes. Those folks you tell your drama to might be very disappointed if you gave it up, or, perhaps they would be relieved. Not long ago, in my anger management class, a young woman said that she just loved to hear the drama of others. She wanted to hear the whole story and she just couldn’t get enough. Then, she said that she made sure not to create or dwell on the drama in her life. She took action to move away from the drama and create the life and relationships she knew were in alignment with her values. Good for her! She admitted, though, that it was a bit strange to feed on the drama of others!
You chose your partner for a reason. Do you remember what that reason was? Likely there were many.
Life offers pain, difficulties and complications along with laughter, love, and occasionally, lemons. People react or respond. People make mistakes. People change. They learn and they grow. Sometimes, they hide and wallow. You are not who you were when you met your partner, are you? You’ve changed and, hopefully, grown in positive ways. Would you really want to have stopped and stagnated along the way? Not likely. But, did your relationship?
If you are dragging the past along like full trash can, you’ll trip on it every time you turn around. It is possible to see each other with new, kinder eyes in this present moment…if you’re open to it. Yes, it takes some relationship help, some change, and some time, but it’s worth it. At the least, you will then know why being together is not a great idea. At best, you’ll discover a new love, new insights and more appreciation. It will kindle an anticipation for what is possible as you choose to grow together.
Tripping on the trash of the past keeps you stuck and down. Even you get tired of that story. Why not give both of you the opportunity to see each other differently? You could be skipping into the future together, hand in hand. What it takes is willingness, courage and time: the willingness to take a good, honest look, the courage to re-create your relationship with new insights, new skills and new tools, and the time to make the difference.
Don’t worry, though, I’ll be right here to walk with you and offer the relationship help you need. You can schedule an appointment with me, Dr. Rhoberta Shaler, for in-person or Zoom video right now online by visiting here .