aturity and self-confidence of partners
One of the sources of imbalance in the relationship is a lack of confidence and a lack of awareness of self-worth of partners. These people expect that their partner will give them this missing confidence and fill an inner emptiness. This often happens during the first period of the relationship. The need for the other makes them lose their ability to see the partner not only with his or her qualities, but also with flaws, differences and expectations, in a realistic way, and makes them build the relationship on a delusion, the image of the ideal partner. This explains the frequency of disappointments in these couples.
These people are looking for their second half, feel incomplete without him or her, long for a total fusion and are willing to sacrifice their interests, their personality for the other, which causes them to be unable to live without the other, without flourishing either with him or her. Over time the relationship can transform, making one partner painfully dependent on the other. The relationship is struggling to evolve harmoniously. The change of a partner's behavior, the differences between partners, which were previously hidden and now have become obvious, trigger anxiety. Several scenarios for the evolution of the relationship are possible.
Some live together by fear of loneliness, but are they happy? For fear of being alone, unable to live without each other they end up accepting disrespect, humiliation, betrayal, while losing more and more each day the rest of their self-confidence. To leave and to start life over from zero without knowing what awaits them seems harder than to stay in the known destructive relationship. Staying alone again means to come face to face with himself or herself and with the need to rebuild his or her own self-worth and self-confidence.
For others the couple becomes the ground for settling scores, a verbal or physical battle. A constant search for defects in the other, mutual accusations and reproaches, the more or less permanent confrontational communication, a set of negative projections, all that is more or less faded in social relationships outside for the reasons of politeness and a preservation of a nice self-image, becomes on the contrary especially exhibited in the marital relationship when the doors of the house are closed.
Children are often the first victims of parental disagreements.
Impact of the new genders' balance
The couple has changed in the last half century. Patriarchy gave up its positions under pressure by the emancipated women. The role of man and his behavior also changed. Machismo still keeps its last strongholds in some corners of society under protection of a culture or a patriarchal religion. In a major part of society the division of roles within the couple has changed. Divorces are now common. The entry of women into the workforce gave them a greater independence and more confidence in themselves, women were given the right to decide their freedom and their missions at home, birth of children, they acquired an important voice in family decision-making. The quest for gender equality was often accompanied by devaluation of man and release from traditional male responsibility. This process has resulted in the movement of the cursor on the masculinity-femininity scale to a new pseudo-asexual balance, where women gain power and masculinity, men acquire more feminized traits. This is not an evil in itself. Yet Jung believed that each of us has a feminine side and a masculine side : Anima and Animus part whose inner agreement would influence the balance of a human being. However, it is precisely the proportion of one with respect to another, and the degree of a conscious and an unconscious acceptance that are important. Thus, typically male traits can be helpful for a woman in her professional career, as well as typically feminine traits for a man in the education of children. Their correct dosage can bring more balance to the couple. However, their excess is often detrimental to the couple, and therefore for children. Thus, a phallic woman is castrating for a man. A couple consisting of a woman holding the reins and a submissive man can last as long as the man accepts this position, but at what price? A couple of a dominant man and a submissive woman is often also self-destructive, as well as harmful for children. The witnesses of the parental relationship with all the consequences that it entails, children unwittingly incorporate this model in their memory and may later recreate it in their adult lives.
The influence of parental modeling
Often people try to build their relationship on a model or an anti-model of their parental couple. In the case of reconstruction of the parental model they may attempt to replicate the behavior of the parent on the partner of the same sex as the parent, and have the same type of relationships as those existing between parents. If the parental couple was not very balanced, this lack of balance can be reproduced in the next generation unless the person becomes aware of it and decides to do therapeutic work to detach from this model and to operate differently.
In the case of construction of a couple on the parental anti-model, one risk to go to another extreme which also lacks balance as well as the original model. To deal with it, awareness and therapeutic work are needed.
What are the alternatives? How to live happily in marriage?
The work on oneself in parallel with the work on the relationship between partners are required. Knowing to abandon an old way of thinking and behavior patterns that do not work, to overcome complexes, to gain self-confidence and a better understanding and tolerance towards the other, to agree to change, to determine goals and hopes in a relationship and the means that everyone is ready to implement to see the couple flourish, are necessary. Here's just a few therapeutic work directions for couple's therapy. The motivation and the ability to question oneself and to accept a consensus are essential.
A balanced couple is composed of two whole beings, two mature and independent people who have developed their personality, remaining themselves with the other while respecting their differences. Two people in love without suffocating each other, accept one another without trying to change the other. It is a couple where love, sharing a bond, respect, trust, good communication, values and common interests reign.
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