Written by a Philadelphia Psyciatrist and Therapist, Dr. Maurie Pressman.
I have seen so many marriages and other relationships go wrong, simply because one or the other has “outgrown” the partner.
That may well be a veritable truth. In fact, it is really hard for two individuals to live together, day by day, over a period of time. Why? Because we are each unique, and it is easy to rub each other the wrong way. We seek closeness, but want to remain ourselves. That’s not always easy.
What are the rules?
- Stick it out for a while. Troubles will pass or at least ease. If they don’t, you will find out.
- Try to “become the other person”—that is to be yourself, while, for the moment, putting yourself in his/her shoes, and see it from the other point of view. If you do, you will grow as well as your partner.
- This is a contract; each must take a turn at looking at it this way.
- Have a good exchange with a good intention.
- Be careful not to be accusatory. One really good rule is to speak out of one’s vulnerability. For example instead of saying, “you lied to me,” let it come out as, “I am really hurt and lose my trust when you don’t tell me the truth.” It is much harder to get angry when something is said out of one’s vulnerability.
- Don’t be afraid to be wrong, or be right. Simply seek what is right and right for both of you.
- In this way, you each may have grown on a different path, but not necessarily outgrown each other. You are aware of the differences and respect them and each other.
After a while, you might find that it is the right relationship, and it grows further. If not, you have given it a good chance.