What myths have we been conditioned to believe about love and relationships?
We all have protective strategies which keep us from feeling vulnerable. Unfortunately, these dynamics cause damage to a relationship. Terry Real names five losing strategies in relationships. The first step of changing destructive interactions is to understand your partner’s protective mechanisms but more importantly what your own defaults are.
When there are trust issues in a relationship, the question arises if the trust can be restored. Mistrust can provide an excuse to leave a relationship if we had already been thinking about ending the relationship. It all depends on what the relationship was like before the betrayal happened. Before deciding to heal and restore the broken trust, the author Mira Kirshenbaum recommends that you ask yourself several questions.
All long-term relationships go through stages. The honeymoon phase makes way to a more challenging stage and from that stage we can advance into the mature love stage. When we learn how to deal with adversity and with our triggers an empowered relationship is the result.
Figuratively speaking, everyone has an inner “Love Bank”. When somebody is associated with good feelings, “love units” are deposited into those emotional accounts, and when he or she is associated with painful experiences, love units are withdrawn. Hurtful experiences with others trigger our nervous system into fight, flight or freeze. Those experiences of being triggered into fight or flight put strain on a relationship. The concept of the love bank helps us to understand how to make sure painful experiences are balanced out with experiences of safety and love.
I ask, “How are you?” She replies, “Not that great. I have been feeling really down for the last two weeks. It all feels futile. I have failed in so many ways.”
The “I’m not good enough” story is almost universal. It is our default program but there is something we can do to alleviate this Inner Critic voice.
In order to communicate most successfully, we need to move beyond needing to be right and beyond making the other person wrong. If we want our feelings and needs to be respected, we need to stop judging other people’s feelings and needs and begin to truly accept and respect them.