If you happened to click on this article because you had a suspicion it was going to irritate you, let me start by sharing this widely-accepted notion. “The truth will set you free – but occasionally, it may really aggravate you first...”
I think we all intuitively “get” that there are many good reasons why you might not want to feel like you “need” your partner. The truth is – life, by its very nature, is uncertain so there is some comfort to be found in not getting too “attached” to things you can’t control. In fact, it’s easy to make the case that it’s actually smart (which explains why the people who do this most often are usually highly intelligent and successful). However, I suggest there may be another very different – and far more empowering – way of looking at that. In order to illustrate that, I want to share a thought-provoking, real-life story.
A Judge of Character
Recently, I saw an excellent interview that Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor did with Oprah. Clearly, she is a brilliant and very hard-working woman of superior intellect, dedication and compassion. While I’m not here to “judge” her in any way, I do think her interview featured what our President would call a critically important “teachable moment” and I want to use it to serve others. Who knows, maybe it will even get back to her somehow...so I offer this perspective with deep respect, admiration and appreciation for her.
For those who don’t know, Justice Sotomayor married her high school sweetheart who she described as very generous, kind and loving. Despite her obvious love and appreciation for this man (which you can see for yourself in the clip below), they divorced seven years into the relationship – yet still remain close today. So it begs the question – with so much love and appreciation still evident decades later – how did it all go wrong? And why has the Justice never remarried?
Justice Sotomayor was so beautifully introspective and vulnerable as she took full responsibility and admitted that she was completely consumed with her work as an up-and-coming attorney. As she says in her own words essentially, one day, her husband realized that no matter how hard he worked, he would never be as successful as her...and his inescapable conclusion was – “does she really even need me?” As painful as that realization was for him, her response was even more devastating...as it would be to any man. She said, “I loved him & I knew he loved me. But did I need him in the way that he wanted me to need him? He was probably right...that I didn’t...”
See the video clip for yourself:
An Open-And-Shut Case? Not Exactly...