Sunday, April 10, 2016

Knowing the Other, and When to Say Goodbye

It’s not about “feeling” that it’s right.  It’s about knowing what IS right, and then knowing that YOU know this, and that you are 100% comfortable with your partner’s understanding of this.  Trust is the last piece, which is challenging, but you need to trust your instincts on this as well.  If you do *not* think your partner has what it takes to handle a real marriage, then trust that it is right to end the relationship.  Save yourself and the other years of challenges, get started on the right foot.  Ensure you know that the other person has what it takes to make it with you.  Take the time to understand and know yourself and the other person.  This understanding leads to wisdom, and good decision making.

In my humble opinion, some measure of credible premarital counseling is essential for all couples, and the more, the better.  There are many different online premarital counseling programs, it’s important that you seek out something that works for you.  It’s crucial that you do everything you can to ensure you know the other person, what they are truly thinking and feeling, what their perspectives are on all important issues, but but more importantly, that you KNOW YOURSELF as well.  It’s important that you and the other person are truly in synch.  I like this article and how it describes the importance of premarital counseling.  As the Ben Franklin quote goes, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” and it totally applies to preventing a bad marriage that ends in divorce.  

Now perhaps at the end of your premarital counseling or coursework, you do indeed find that the other person is not who you want to marry.  You may at this point find it’s important to move on with your life, and end your relationship.  This is indeed important if you plan to continue your search for the “right one”.  Breaking up is never easy to do, especially if you’ve invested a lot of time and emotional energy into the relationship.  You will need some help.

A book that I highly recommend for anyone that is looking for solid perspectives on the lifespan of relationships, why they end, and in fact how they can end gracefully, is Coming Apart:  Why Relationships End and How to Live through the Ending of Yours, by Daphne Rose Kingma.  Kingma does an excellent job of talking about how certain relationships are important to our inner development work, and at times those development tasks end, and the relationships do not have what is needed to grow beyond this.

The book helped me to understand why I entered into the relationships I did, and most importantly, helped me to understand why they ended.  The clear perspectives made sense to me and helped me see beyond the emotional aspects of pain and regret at the ending, and helped me to focus on the positive aspects which came from the relationship, such as what I had learned about myself, and had learned from the other… things that I would not have been gifted with otherwise.  The feelings of gratitude and understanding which came from reading this book were truly amazing.  I hope you find the same insights.  Check it out at your library, and Amazon also has free excerpts you can read.

It's been said, "It’s better to lose at love, than to have never loved at all.”  There is alot of truth in this saying, but it’s also important to try and prevent as much unnecessary suffering as possible, and that is all about understanding the other person and if the relationship makes sense for you both.  This takes effort in both getting to truly know yourself, and to truly know the other.  This takes time and effort, and it’s an incredibly important investment.  Make this investment long before you take the plunge into marriage.  You will be very happy that you did.  Best wishes to you.