Relationship Killer #1.

Via Tracy Crossley
on Apr 17, 2012
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Photo by Wikimedia

The Wall.

Not the Pink Floyd song, more like having the love of your life adding to the bricks in the wall between you.

You love this person and they love you. Amazingly enough, there are so many beautiful, magical qualities to the relationship—lucky couple! Except for one key factor that is absent: their heart.

They say their heart is there, but it is behind 52 layers of protective stuffing. If you just hang in there long enough, it’ll feel safe to come out and play in the daylight someday.

Or so they say.

Or so you assume.

Either way, it is a cold, lonely way to be in a relationship, which has been ending since it started. It is a slow, painful death being with someone who lives the relationship out in his or her head and doesn’t take action. The odds of their heart ever feeling safe enough can be evidenced from how they live their entire existence.

Do they move on and move forward without being forced?

Or do they appear to be standing still, which is really backwards motion and inevitably being stuck?

Do they reject the next steps in life, their arms are folded, protective gear on, keeping their lives small in little containers?

They are not inspired to put energy into action, although their words state, “Yes, I want to go for the brass ring of happiness, prosperity, love and other possibilities,” but they remain afraid, locked in their own hell.

You may be motivated to believe things are changing, as you witness this individual inch out of their safety net and do something slightly different.Yet, it leads nowhere, no change, no real movement, you can feel the emptiness…it was just an illusion.

They are like street magicians, hiding their heart under the different cups, while you try to guess all of its secret places.

You may have some very wonderful parts to your relationship, but there is always a sense of missing or a lack of emotional fulfillment.

And of course, it isn’t about someone becoming your own personal Band-Aid to hide your wounds or give you an excuse not to attain your own sense of happiness and self-love.

It is someone who cannot give of themselves through action, feelings and maybe even words.

Even more torturous than their inability to express or be fully in the relationship is the real tug o’ war. It isn’t that they don’t want you…the struggle is “they do want you.”

They don’t want to let go, but they don’t want to be in.

They hold onto you for life support, but what they give in return is only a portion of love, time or energy.

They stand in front of you hoping you don’t notice the limitation.

Photo: Wikimedia

They may even tell you they are happy in this semi-relationship where there is no risk. So great! You benefit this person, but what do you get?

Maybe this person is the character Julia Roberts portrays in the film “Eat, Pray, Love?” Standing on the beach afraid to get in the boat, the terror of being consumed or engulfed causing them to risk losing their balance? Maybe they haven’t figured out they have to lose the appearance of balance to truly find it within?

This person doesn’t see how holding back with love is holding back with life.

No greatness is ever achieved without risk.

They hold onto the decayed, musty things, people and situations that aren’t fulfilling, but tell themselves its enough for now and someday they will do great things, but not today!

As we all know, tomorrow is just another yesterday until you start making changes in today.

And by staying in this stuck gear with this person, you aren’t risking it all for greatness either. How long can you hold out for that sunny day in May that you believe could come from this relationship?

Because in the meantime, there is little to look forward to, they kill it with protection. With no anticipation or excitement, it’s a let down.

It just doesn’t feel good much of the time.

You are being punished for something that has nothing to do with you; it’s a struggle. They withdraw, withhold, or throw crumbs your way. You wonder how much longer you can stay in the ring; maybe it will take a knock out for you to go.

It must come to a point of clarity and resolution.

My advice—don’t leave until you do.

Wait until you have clarity in your soul that it won’t change and resolution that you have seen it all the way to its emotional conclusion.

It is important to be here, not angry, but understanding the limitation will remain.

Photo by Wikimedia

Change comes to you.

You grow through the pain of not receiving what you need.

You find yourself.

You realize you do deserve true companionship, a lover, a champion! You deserve a person who has both feet in, who shows you you’re the bees knees even when you feel like a slug, your best friend, your picnic basket of surprises, love without strings or protective gear. You deserve a relationship where you are in it because it lights your soul!  Of course, your current relationship could turn a corner.

If the person has any level of self-awareness, there is always that chance.

They may wake up to their own numbness, and decide to rip out the life support tubes and live!

All your growth will pay off. You both could be in the same place of wholeness, and the relationship will light you both up like a Christmas tree in July!

It could happen before it’s too late. I’m betting on it!

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Editor: Kate Bartolotta


About Tracy Crossley

Tracy Crossley is a hyphenate: female, writer, curiosity quencher, artist, poet, gardener of real gardens and existential ones, clairvoyant, and momma to grown ups. She owns Intuitive Reinvention Inc. She is currently speaking, writing and mentoring people on getting out of their heads and dysfunctional relationships and into living an authentic, anxiety-free, happy and loving existence. If you want to learn more about her and how she can help you, check out a complimentary discovery session with her click to learn and schedule., Or find her on social media, facebook page, blog and on twitter, she always follows back. She also has a free weekly podcast show on many topics she writes about here click here to listen.


9 Responses to “Relationship Killer #1.”

  1. jamesvincentknowles says:


  2. Eric says:

    This is a great post, Tracy!!! My zen teacher would say, "Don't leave a situation angry, wait until you are neutral, relaxed and responsive–rather than reactive" (that also works outside of romantic relations also).
    And it's always dubious when someone who is completely self-absorbed says, "I'm a pretty self-aware person" or, "But I'm ALWAYS working on our relationship!" (gulp).
    Are you familiar with the work of David Deida??

  3. Tracy says:

    Hey Eric!!

    Glad you liked it. I had not heard of David Deida, until I saw your comment and just looked him up. Just by quickly glancing at his homepage, he speaks my language, in terms of not wasting moments…"now, is the time and you gain pain by not being fully present, engaged and knocking it out of the ballpark." Seriously, I walk around asking myself, if this was the last day of my life…would I be satisfied with the life I have created? And somedays that I am not, I ask what can "I do" to get on that horse and move thru my own limitations?

    I completely agree with your Zen teacher, true in all parts of life. And that is the challenge, not letting ego grab the reins and take the wagon on out of town or create more drama when not getting your way or immediate gratification. There is a certain peace and wholeness that comes when you stay til neutrality, choices are easier and what caused you pain, no longer controls you.

    And yes, I love people who say they have awareness, but have no connection or concept to what that actually means. It is always my hope that the Universe provides them an opportunity to discover true awareness in themselves.

    If you have a minute, please tell me more about David Deida.

  4. Eric says:

    I have a friend who has done workshops with him, and in turn taught 'Integral Couples' workshops which incorporate Deida's work. So I have gleaned a bit here and there; I guess your ideas reminded me of him–as you say–"speaks your language." For me, the most potent teaching of his I came across was the idea of "being met where you're at" (and vice versa).

    No one completes me, and I can't complete them; either we're both present–right here, right now–willing to co-create something, or we don't have parity. I recently rediscovered a Faulker quote I had written down ages ago: “You don’t love because: you love despite; not for the virtues, but despite the faults.”

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  6. Tracy says:

    Hey Eric!!

    I apologize for not responding sooner, I am on board with being "met where you are at", I usually refer to it as the mirror effect. People always mirror us (or at least in my life, I see it all the time). And depending where we are at, it can definitely be more joyous or more painful….I am really investing in my own acceptance and well-being right now, so I up-level that mirror effect.

    And yes, no Jerry Maguire–no one completes anyone! Haha! And frankly, having someone love you as "you are" is the only way to proceed in a relationship. Potential of what we want someone else to be, says more about us than them.

    Love the Faulkner quote! Nice chatting with you.

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