In relationship, the same happening referenced in the above paragraphs has happened individually. We are nice, well intentioned people, with some weird, protective habits. Then we get involved with an other. At first the dynamic is fun and sexy and alive, the different habits of your partner are endearing. In time it gets stuck and tight and annoying and triggering. The heart of couples work is growing an awareness of our own, and our partners defensive aspects. We can become allies to ourselves, and to our partner! Really we can. In time we can help one another laugh at some of the ridiculous ways we try to feel safe or lovable or important. We can become allies on the journey.
Couples work also helps shine an incredible light on the unmet needs from childhood. If you watch carefully, you will likely notice that for some reason you think it’s your partners job to make you feel… Well guess what, (and upon reading this next part I may become very unpopular), it’s not their job! If you watch carefully you might find that most of us project the unmet needs from childhood on our partners, teachers, and friends. For this reason, great friendships, and partnerships offer an incredible opportunity to see what it is we are working with in terms of unmet needs.
So basically, we can keep bumping into one another defensive, non-listening parts, or learn to meet and heal our own, and be willing to understand one another’s.