A genuine relationship is one that is not dominated by the ego with its image making and self-seeking. In a genuine relationship, there is an outward flow of open, alert attention toward the person in which there is no wanting whatsoever ~ Eckhart Tolle
“What’s this fearless love?” A friend of mine asked when I told her I was writing this.
“You know…where we enter into a love relationship with someone not based upon our fears.”
“What?! Love is defined by fear. It’s the underlying groundwork of any relationship.”
“Really? Why do you say that?” Now I was intrigued. “So, in your opinion, what are the fears beneath our relationships?”
She answered readily, no hesitation. Perhaps these fears are deeply engrained in our subconscious, as I had already thought.
1. Fear of being betrayed
2. Fear of being abandoned
3. Fear of being under-appreciated
4. Fear of being emotionally shattered
5. Fear of being no longer attractive to our mate
6. Fear of…….Wait! That’s enough fear!
Is this why we don’t get along? Are we starting our relationships with too many fears, too many expectations, too many hopes for perfection? Perhaps we should examine what love is instead of what it is not.
Love is an untamed force. When we try to control it, it destroys us. When we try to imprison it, it enslaves us. When we try to understand it, it leaves us feeling lost and confused. ~ Paulo Coelho
We’re in trouble already if:
1. We want our partner to promise that he will be the one individual on earth who does not hurt us like the rest of the world has hurt us.
He will be our safe haven from all the hurts. Even the most diligent partner is fully human and dealing with his own issues. Further, we are responsible for what we allow to wound us.
It is true, that a partner can be a safe harbour during the storms of life, the one we trust with the deepest and darkest parts of ourselves, our place of solace. Can be, sometimes. Leave space for them to say, “I just have nothing to give right now, babe.” Such space and communication builds trust and a deeper love.
2. We believe he will be my everything.
No one can be that for us. It’s a long journey to becoming everything that one needs to be for themselves, never mind for the one they love. Our emotions and our spiritual state are in constant flux. We are continually learning through life experiences, and withdrawing from our own bank of ‘self love’.
If I look at the list of what I need support with, I can see that some of those things will have to come from myself, some things I will find in my relationships with varied friends, and then some I can go to my partner for. But to ask for it all from him would be an unfair expectation of his love for me.
3. That the piece of paper you signed at your wedding ceremony is insurance against dis-honesty, dis-loyalty, or any number of other things we hope to hold our partner to.
We can point to the document all we want and say, ‘Here, you signed this and said these things and now you are going back on your word. This piece of paper was my guarantee to have true happiness; you said you would provide it.’ That is a lot of power to place in someone else’s hands.
Before things come crashing down around a relationship like so many pieces of glass that cannot be put back together again, we can:
>> Look at our beloved and see their beautiful imperfection.
>> We can release them from being responsible for keeping our biggest fears at bay.
>> We can love them where they’re at.
Life will give you whatever experience is most helpful for the evolution of your consciousness. How do you know this is the experience you need? Because this is the experience you are having. ~ Eckhart Tolle
We’ve read so many stories about ideal love, about a seamless happily ever after, that it’s part of our DNA. There are certain parameters that our lover must adhere to or we will lose ourselves in a quagmire of questions about their devotion to us. Once we cast the light of ‘husband’ on them, they stop looking like ‘friend’, ‘fellow seeker on the path to consciousness’, ‘dreamer’.
Let’s take a breath and re-think this.
1. That ideal mate has faults.
He’s not here to make me happy. He’s here to share an experience with me where, hopefully, both of us are interested in each other’s journey. I hope that I can hold enough love in heart space for him that I won’t ask him to give what he doesn’t have in the moment. He will hurt me sometimes, or in other words, I will allow some of his actions to wound me.
Both partners must own their actions, emotions and reactions.
2. He’s not here to heal me, keep me sane, or make all my dreams come true.
If he does manage all that, great! What love must have gone into such an achievement! That is a bonus, but not what love requires of our beloved. Love requires us to be honest with each other. To give of ourselves without losing our own essence. To love someone is to allow them space to experience themselves. Fully.
3. If my relationship is falling apart it might be a good thing.
Maybe it needs re-inventing. Maybe it needs to fall into shambles so a new, more suitable relationship can be re-built for the people we are now. We’re not going to stay the same person for the entirety of our lifetime together. Embrace the chaos and give each other room to grow. The common ground is our commitment to love each other through it. We won’t grow in tandem; there will be times when we’re either further apart or closer together. It’s okay. Don’t freak out. Just breathe and make love. Have a drink and laugh.
4. Wake up each day committed to seeing each other with new eyes.
We forget the blind, wide eyed love that coloured us ‘perfect’. Sure, there’s going to be snags. Love is not about an absence of arguments or disappointments. If love wasn’t messy, we’d be bored. Love is like the free falling bird from its nest. There are no guarantees. Just believe that it’s going to be a wild ride that ends well.
Remember each other’s dreams but take responsibility for your own. Hold space for your lovers needs and honor your own. Let go of them in your heart and watch how that frees you to love them on a whole new level. Love them fearlessly. Fearless love is a solid rock for a long term relationship.
5. When he does something that hurts, say; “Oh. You did that. Nice to see your human side.
I’ll be over here healing. Come kiss me, hold me. I need your love right now.”
I guarantee that he will fall all over himself to make you smile again. Because you’ve honored the broken-ness in him, and given love in return.
Love one another but let’s not try to possess each other. ~ Paulo Coelho
It’s because we’ve taken ownership of each other that we hang on so tight.
Freedom is another word for love.
Author: Monika Carless
Volunteer Editor: Kim Haas / Editor: Renee Picard
Photo: Author’s own.