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16December2017

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Fall in love again - Part 2

Falling in love is as easy as falling out of a tree. To love each other forever and always takes a bit more grit and perseverance. Sometimes it seems to be impossible . . .

Mister and Misses Mug
One can compare it to the image of two coffee mugs, Mr and Mrs Mug. Mr Mug is full of blue beads and Mrs Mug is full of pink beads. When they just met they were very careful with each other. He wanted to win her heart and she wanted to win his affections. Just a month after their marriage they bump into each other and some of their beads fall off. Suddenly things came out that they saw in each other and both of them wonders: Where did this come from all of a sudden? “I didn’t know you have anger issues.” say the one. “I didn’t have it until you bumped me.” the other replies. Mr Mug thinks the reason his beads are scattering is because his wife bumped into him. Mrs Mug thinks the same. The actual reason is because all those things are inside both of them. You just don’t know what is inside you until you get bumped.

Most of us don’t get that kind of bump until we are in a romantic relationship. There is something about a romantic relationship that brings out the best and worst in us. This is why spouses can become so mad at each other. The beads come out because it is inside you and you always blame the one you love the most.

Look at what is inside you
You have to learn to pay attention to what is inside both of you. Proverbs 4:23 says: “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Look after that which is important to you. All these things usually come out in the relationship that is most important to you. When you are in another relationship these beads will scatter again. Eventually you might think: I have been in four relationships with a man/woman that has the same problem over and over.

In a relationship you expect to feel a certain way. You want to feel beautiful, valuable and appreciated. In the beginning of a relationship it is exactly those feelings that draw you together, that special way the other person makes you feel. You created those emotions and now you want to keep it alive. You are often dependent on your partner to make you feel these specific things.

Monitor your own heart 
If you entered a marriage with only good memories, your heart was probably in a very healthy condition. But if you have never felt appreciated it is more difficult for you. No matter who you are in a relationship with, you will never feel good enough.

The problem is that you monitor you partner’s actions with an eagle eye but no the condition of your own heart. That which is inside all of us will always come out. One always says that for you should think before you speak, try to stop and consider how you feel before you speak. For women this might be easier that it is for men. Men often just say that they feel frustrated or angry. Try to describe your emotions.

Clearly state that it feels as if your partner no longer loves you, you feel like a failure, you feel old, simple, alone, rejected, out of control, scared, betrayed, it feels as if you are being picked on, you feel jealous, unsure, as if you are not treated with respect any more. Say this aloud even if, initially it is just to yourself. Think about it. Why does another person’s success make you feel like a failure? Distinguish between that which you partner says and what you feel because it forces a wedge between you.

Support each other
When your partner says something like: “I feel as if you no longer appreciate me,” don’t say anything else. Instead of saying: “You shouldn’t feel like that. I am sorry you do,” rather say: “I am so glad you shared this with me.” Healthy people will the stop saying whatever causes those feelings in their partner. Do not admonish your partner to ‘grow up’ or tell him or her that they should just handle it. Attend to their feelings of your own heart, after all, you often give attention to your partner’s actions. Tell yourself aloud how you feel. Often times it is not just a marriage or relationship problem, but rather feelings that has been inside you for a long time and only become prominent in the relationship or marriage. The challenge is getting this right because we life in accordance to that which flows from our hearts.

Article by Lize Groenewald