Free love, addicted love - what is a lover relationship

Free love, addicted love - what is a lover relationship

Much of the relationship is between two people who are addicted to each other. People who quite literally can't live without each other. Why do we become so easily dependent on our partners in our intimate relationships? Why do we need the other person so much that the thought of breaking up is like a vision of the end of the world?


Free love, addicted love - what is a lover relationship


We will start this article in a rather unusual way. I'm going to share with you an excerpt from the best relationship book I have ever read. This is the book You're the one you've been waiting for. This is a book by Richard Schwartz, the founder of IFS therapy (you can read more about this method here).

The book is currently in the process of translation and will be published in Polish around May 2019, but thanks to the publisher's kindness, I can share this priceless fragment with you now. This is a text about the magic kitchen metaphor, which will be an ideal introduction to the rest of the article

Magic Kitchen metaphor

"Imagine that you have inherited the Magic Kitchen from your parents, where you can find any kind and any amount of food. Since your parents fed you unconditionally, you have learned to treat your children the same way. So they are happy because they love your food. It is so nutritious. and satisfying that children are neither overeating nor craving sweets or other types of junk food.

You never use food to punish or motivate them, as a result, your children believe they deserve to be well-fed, if only because they are your children. They do not argue because each of them knows that there is enough food for everyone. You also give your friends, neighbors, and all who are hungry to eat without restriction for the sole pleasure of sharing. You know you don't need to gather food because your resources never run out.

Free love, addicted love - what is a lover relationship


One day a man knocks on your door and offers your children constant access to pizza and candy if they are lovingly cared for. Since you and your children are full, and you can see that this man does not care very well for his own children, you reply, "No thanks, we have plenty of our own food."


Another day another man knocks on your door. He is like you: he has many children whom he generously nourishes, and they are happy and content. He is attracted to food from your Magic Kitchen, but he doesn't need it, because he likes to cook himself and has a lot of his own food. His children love to play with yours and would like to live in your house. But they also know that he will take care of them no matter what happens to you, so they trust his decision about where to live.

You invite him over and you are delighted with how much you like each other what you cook for each other. All children enjoy the variety of dishes that are now made in your kitchen.

Now imagine that you live in a different house. You are very poor and have little food for your children. Because they are always hungry, the youngest and weakest of your children are constantly crying and asking you to find them someone to feed them. Their despair drives you crazy, so you lock them in the basement so that they will stop annoying you and remind you of their torment. Your parents have taught you to deal with troublesome children.

Free love, addicted love - what is a lover relationship

Though you try hard to ignore the sobs of your youngest children, you still hear them through the basement walls. The urgency of their needs is like the constant stabbing at the back of the head. Some of the older children have already lost their confidence that you can even take care of your family.


They take on adult tasks, insist you try harder, and try to control or calm the other children in the basement while trying to find some food. As these older children do not have the tools to handle these tasks, they become ruthless and want to control everything. They constantly criticize your work habits and quality, and use enormous energy resources to control the children in the basement.


So when that pizza and candy guy approaches your door, the kids in the basement smell the food ahead of time. They go crazy for the thought that someone can feed them and bring them back from exile. They adore the Candy Guy and are ready to do whatever it takes to please him. You and your older children are hungry and exhausted; You are very impressed with how much this guest makes the little ones in the basement. You are very tempted by the possibility that you won't have to deal with them anymore if you let them stick to someone else.


As a result, despite some concerns about this man's requirements and the poor quality of his food, you and your older children agree to take care of his emotional needs in return for regular meals. It turns out that the man is aggressive from time to time, but younger children are still afraid of going hungry and going back to the basement. At the same time, he is increasingly skimpy on pizza and candy, while the little ones have already become addicted to them. Every time you start a conversation about getting rid of it, the kids keep you from letting them speak.

Free love, addicted love - what is a lover relationship

Imagine now that the food in this story is actually loved and the children are different parts of you. If you identify with the first parent to have a magic kitchen, you don't need to read this book further. This is because when you love and accept your parts unconditionally - simply because they exist within you - they will not be attracted to the false promises of different people.


And when you find the right partner, your parts won't be as dependent, demanding, preventive, or vulnerable as to constantly make scenes or make you tolerate violence. Instead, each will love your partner in their own way, enriching your experience of intimacy. They will also feel confident knowing that even if they get hurt by it, you won't leave them and take care of everything.


However, if you are like most people in our culture, then you have learned from your parents and peers to exile some parts of yourself. So your psyche's basement is full of love-hungry and vulnerable inner children. Since they get so little from you, they will obsessively look for someone who - as they imagine - will save them.


In this desperation, they will blind you to that person's shortcomings. They will most likely make you choose Mr. Wrong, and then, because they are so needy and vulnerable, they will force you to stay with that person for too long, or they will be sensitive to alleged injuries from him, or they will try to control how much he can get. bring you and other people closer. "


Disappointment inevitable

Give yourself a moment to reflect now. Do you love all your children and feed them abundantly, or are those who are hungry and thirsty for food locked in the basement, where they scream even louder for attention?


I sincerely hope that you are one of the few people who have such a magical kitchen within you, full of love for everyone, even the most wounded parts of you. However, if this is not the case, don't worry. In this article, you'll learn how to stop focusing on getting these parts cared for by other people and looking after them yourself. So as not to be dependent on your partner and create healthy and conscious relationships.

Free love, addicted love - what is a lover relationship


As a result of social programming and what we have learned from our parents, we most often do not believe that we can get what we need from ourselves. We are fed a vision of a world where finding the "other" is key to finding happiness. Romantic films pouring out of cinema and television screens mercilessly put in our heads the image of people in love at first sight, for whom loneliness has always meant a failure in life.


So we focus on finding relief for our suffering in the outside world, instead of taking care of what hurts us by ourselves. We enter into relationships in which our dream partner with his presence is to help us bury the tormenting feeling of loneliness, and with his love he is to prove to us that we are worth something.


Unfortunately, this strategy only works temporarily. As Schwartz writes, “Your partner can't make you feel good forever. Your disappointment will be inevitable at some point. " Sooner or later something will happen that will force us to confront a difficult truth - he / she is unable to fill my own emotional holes.


Perhaps he will begin to spend more time with his colleagues, forcing you to face his fear of being alone.


Perhaps she will stop looking at you as in a picture and wake up the part of you that needs to be admired so much.


Perhaps he will forget to hide his socks, and you will release anger based on a strong need for control fueled by a feeling of helplessness.


The behavior and reactions of our partners constantly awaken in us what is left to heal.

Free love, addicted love - what is a lover relationship


3 lifebuoys

As these types of situations start to happen more and more often - when our partners or our partners are no longer meeting our needs - we do our best to ensure that our emotional wounds can continue to be covered with a plaster of relief and peace. This usually comes down to three possibilities:


We are trying to persuade our partner to change. We criticize, embarrass, negotiate, ask, demand that he become the person he was before - or the one whose image we have created in our head.

We do the same, only to ourselves. We cancel ourselves in favor of a partner, we adapt to what we think our partner expects. Obviously, this has destructive consequences as we deny who we really are, and it is likely to create frustration in us that we later direct onto the other person.

We close our hearts to our partner and A) look for someone else, B) cut ourselves off from suffering and emptiness and stay in the current relationship (hearing our partner's words like "You feel nothing, you are like a block of ice!") , C) we cut ourselves off these feelings and choose to live alone.

You can probably see now that none of these options are particularly attractive. So what's the alternative?


Turning your attention inward instead of focusing on making the other person your salvation. In other words - good old work on yourself.


Let's face it - it's not easy. Without constantly reassuring ourselves that we are special and wonderful, many of us will, to some extent, experience feelings of worthlessness, loneliness, or emptiness.


However, if we want to have a deeply spiritual and strong bond with our partner, there is a price to pay for it. We must take the time to build such a magical kitchen for ourselves. A place within ourselves from which we can take care of our wounded parts.


We need to learn to nourish our parts with our own love, so that the love of others is a wonderful accessory and not a drug without which we cannot function.

Of course, it's not about being 100% self-sufficient. Nobody is. We are made to live in relationships, relationships and communities. This is our nature. Your partner can still be a valuable support for you and I cannot imagine that in my relationship it will be otherwise.


However, when you release your partner from the pressure of taking care of your own emotional wounds (and when you release him from your anger when he doesn't), he will become your companion, partner, lover you need.


He will be one because he wants it and sees it as a great value, not because he feels that if he doesn't, he will be rejected by you. If you're ready to share the responsibility of taking care of what's not yet sorted out, you can get a lot from him.

Free love, addicted love - what is a lover relationship

What does it mean to "share responsibility"? This means that you have every right to ask your partner in a relationship not to do things that make you flooded with your own, unworked emotions (and also to do those things that help you take care of your life). about your needs). Of course, with the awareness and acceptance that he may not agree to fulfill this request.

In order not to be dependent on what your partner thinks or does, it is important that you take care of your emotional wounds on your own when these wounds reopen. Be the primary caretaker of those most needy parts of your personality and treat your partner as someone who may (but does not have to!) Support you in this.


This can be summed up by saying that you will not know how to love anyone until you love yourself.


It functions as a bit of a truism in our culture. Many books talk about it, but few teach how to do it properly. Of course, this is a river topic and it is not my goal to give you such solutions in this article. You will surely find more information on this subject in the book mentioned above or in my online course  "Confidence in Relationships", which was largely inspired by this book.


However, to leave you with some practical inspiration, below I share 9 ideas on what to do in your relationship to free your partner from carrying your own burdens.


9 ways to love addiction-free

Not all of the above-mentioned methods may suit you, and not all of them may be appropriate for you at the stage where you are in your relationship. However, I encourage you to try each of them. While some may seem like a challenge at first glance, in practice they are easier than you might think.


Each of these methods will definitely have a positive impact on how you function in your relationship, how your partner or your partner feels and how the bond that is between you develops.


First of all, release your partner from responsibility for how you feel. Recognize that it is your own task to take care of your emotions and everything that happens inside you. Even when he pisses you off, when he hurts you, when he forgets about you - remember that you live in the emotions that reacted so strongly and it is your responsibility to take care of them. At the same time, when something like this happens ...

Talk to your partner about the difficult emotions you are experiencing. Tell him about the traumas you experienced as a child. Share what is most difficult for you. This will allow him to better understand you and your behavior. It is important for both of you to know that your sometimes extreme and difficult reactions are not the fault of the other, but come from within each of you. Talking about our wounds is likely to make you feel more understanding.

Try not to hurt the other person with words, even if your quarrel has grown to unimaginable dimensions. Every word that hurts hits those most vulnerable parts of us, which in turn strengthens our defenses. The stronger the defense mechanisms, the greater the chance of a conflict exacerbation.

If, in spite of everything, it happens that you hurt each other with deeds or words - give yourself some time for yourself (separately) and think about what led you to this and not another behavior. Apologize to your partner, apologize to your partner. Explain what in you was the reason for this and no other behavior. Miracles are made here by NVC (Nonviolent Communication) - the language of love.

Free love, addicted love - what is a lover relationship


When your partner acts as if he doesn't care about you or doesn't love you - remember that it's only one part of his personality that has that attitude towards you. It is only natural that in one person there may be parts that have a lot of love, goodness, and kindness, as well as parts that happen to feel hatred, anger, and aversion.

If you are concerned about your relationship and you feel that your needs are not being met, don't force your partner to make small sacrifices and compromises so that he becomes the person you want him to be. This will gradually and slowly make him stop being himself. Being a victim of such influence, he or she may be willing to do what you expect him to do because he will want you to be happy. Soon, however, she won't be the person you originally fell in love with.

On the other hand, don't write yourself off in favor of your partner. Don't conform to what you think he expects. Instead, focus on an honest conversation about your needs and expectations, thanks to which you will see together whether it is worth continuing this relationship.

If a breakup is inevitable, be aware that your fear is related to the fear that your inner children will now have no food (love). This does not have to be true, because you can learn to connect with that place in you where that love is abundant so that you can feed it to all the bits of yourself that need it.

Print this article and give it to your partner with a note that you want to talk to him about it in the coming days. Ask him what he thinks about this, and if he is open to starting putting the ideas outlined here into practice.

Finally, remember that any relationship is a challenge. Every relationship requires you to confront some of the most difficult parts of yourself. This has its advantages - there is no better way to discover yourself and work on yourself than an intimate relationship.

So you can treat your partner as your most wonderful teacher. A teacher who will not always easily show you those places in you that are not healed yet.


I wish you good luck in creating close and authentic love relationships. And if you have 3 minutes and you see yourself ready to share your experiences and thoughts on this topic - please leave your comment under the article.



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