Why your lover needs to see you as an equal

Great Health Guide - - CONTENTS - Dr Matthew An­der­son

For at least the last 5000 years, women have been seen as in­fe­rior to men by al­most all cul­tures, po­lit­i­cal sys­tems and re­li­gions. This per­cep­tion has done enor­mous dam­age to and placed se­vere lim­i­ta­tions on mar­riage and all other in­ti­mate re­la­tion­ships be­tween men and women. In­ti­macy, es­pe­cially the rad­i­cal in­ti­macy po­ten­tially present in ro­man­tic love, can­not grow and pros­per if one part­ner is per­ceived as su­pe­rior or in­fe­rior to the other. In­ti­macy re­quires an equal­ity of power, oth­er­wise, safety is di­min­ished and close­ness is lim­ited or dam­aged.

When a man and a woman fall in love, the love it­self is an in­vi­ta­tion to a deep and trans­form­ing re­la­tion­ship be­tween equals. Ev­ery ro­man­tic ex­pe­ri­ence has of­fered this gift since the first two lovers fell into each other’s arms. Sadly, only a small per­cent­age have been able to take ad­van­tage of the im­mense bless­ing of rad­i­cal in­ti­macy that this par­tic­u­lar form of love al­ways prom­ises. Too quickly and too eas­ily, both part­ners fall prey to the per­ni­cious per­cep­tion that men are some­how su­pe­rior.

As soon as this nasty but ubiq­ui­tous idea takes hold then both lovers lose ac­cess to the deep wa­ters of ro­man­tic love and are rel­e­gated for­ever to the baby pool of in­ti­macy. Both part­ners may be un­aware of the sub­tle shift but both even­tu­ally suf­fer from the shal­low­ness of con­nec­tion. In­stead of con­tin­u­ing on a mys­ti­cal jour­ney of lov­ing dis­cov­ery and the re­al­iza­tion of the great po­ten­tials of ro­man­tic love, they set­tle for medi­ocrity and even bore­dom. Then, with no true depth of bond­ing, the once lov­ing cou­ple be­come highly vul­ner­a­ble to the dif­fi­cul­ties of life and the dis­so­lu­tion of their re­la­tion­ship be­comes a real and present pos­si­bil­ity.

It would be easy to blame men for the per­sis­tent per­cep­tion of in­equal­ity be­tween



the sexes. That con­clu­sion would, how­ever, be both sopho­moric and ul­ti­mately a waste of time. The truth is there have been a thou­sand rea­sons for this un­for­tu­nate con­cept and men and women alike have sub­scribed to it for mil­len­nia. Solutions to so­cial prob­lems, es­pe­cially those that in­volve in­ti­mate re­la­tion­ships, are never found in blame. Blame cre­ates vic­tims and vic­tims per­ceive them­selves as pow­er­less. The real so­lu­tion be­gins with hon­esty and vul­ner­a­bil­ity. Both men and women need to ad­mit to this sad state of per­cep­tion and then open their hearts to each other in a rad­i­cal new way. The great and most ef­fec­tive equal­izer be­tween any two in­di­vid­u­als and es­pe­cially

in a ro­man­tic re­la­tion­ship, is vul­ner­a­bil­ity. It is the open­ing of the heart and the ex­pos­ing of the ten­der­est, most se­cret, wounded, most pro­tected, fright­ened and/or pre­cious and trea­sured as­pects of one’s in­ner be­ing. It is then the wel­com­ing, com­pas­sion­ate, un­der­stand­ing and non­judg­men­tal re­ceiv­ing ges­ture of the other that com­pletes the circle and the ex­pe­ri­ence of rad­i­cal in­ti­macy. Then it must be con­tin­ued at the same or deeper level of vul­ner­a­bil­ity by one’s part­ner. This cre­ates a dy­namic flow of in­ti­macy that can then take both part­ners into what might be called rad­i­cal in­ti­macy. Love, once fully in­vited, will do the rest.

Cru­cial Ques­tions:

• What part of your life is not go­ing the way you want it to go? • What dream is still wait­ing in the wings? • What re­la­tion­ship needs a spark or a res­o­lu­tion? • What self-con­cept lim­its your love and/or fi­nan­cial pos­si­bil­i­ties? • How can you break through to more cre­ativ­ity, self-ex­pres­sion and joy in your daily life?

What if you Could take gi­ant pos­i­tive steps in each of the ar­eas men­tioned above?

The right Coach could help you take those steps and find mean­ing­ful an­swers to ev­ery one of these im­por­tant, life-shap­ing ques­tions. I am that Coach! Who­ever you are and what­ever you think you are worth, you are worth my full at­ten­tion and my best coach­ing skills and wis­dom.

Rev­erend Matthew An­der­son has a Doc­tor of Min­istry spe­cial­is­ing in coun­selling and has ex­ten­sive train­ing and ex­pe­ri­ence in Gestalt and Jun­gian Psy­chol­ogy. He has helped many cou­ples and sin­gles suc­cess­fully nav­i­gate re­la­tion­ship is­sues. His has a best-sell­ing book, The Res­ur­rec­tion of Ro­mance. Matthew may be con­tacted through his web­site.

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