Discerning The Loving Heart

By

Discerning The Loving Heart
When you meet someone, have you often wondered if his or her caring is real or manipulative?

How often have you had the experience of connecting with someone – a friend or a potential partner – who turns out to be an uncaring person? At first you think this is a really good person, and then down the line you discover that the person is self-centered, narcissistic, angry and uncaring. You wonder how you could be so wrong, and what can you do differently next time?

I have discovered in my many years of counseling that people seem to decide very early in their lives whether or not they want to care about and have compassion for others' feelings. As a result, people have different levels of willingness to feel others' feelings. Some of us deeply feel others' pain and joy, while other people don't. Some people can recall caring about others' pain and joy from a very young age, while other people remember being concerned mostly with their own feelings and needs.

The people who have chosen the deeper level of compassion are often the ones that become the caretakers, while the less compassionate people become the takers. Caretakers are people who have learned to take responsibility for others' feelings and wellbeing, while takers are people who expect others to take responsibility for their feelings and wellbeing and often blame others when they don't take on this responsibility. Keep reading...

More relationships advice from YourTango

This article was originally published at Inner Bonding . Reprinted with permission.
Article contributed by
Advanced Member

Dr. Margaret Paul

Author

Margaret Paul, Ph.D. is a best-selling author of 8 books, relationship expert, and co-creator of the powerful Inner Bonding® process - featured on Oprah, and recommended by actress Lindsay Wagner and singer Alanis Morissette. Are you are ready to heal your pain and discover your joy? Take our FREE Inner Bonding course, and click here for a FREE CD/DVD relationship offer. Visit our website at innerbonding.com for more articles and help, as well as our Facebook Page. Phone and Skype sessions available. Join the thousands we have already helped and visit us now!

Location: Pacific Palisades, CA
Credentials: PhD
Specialties: Anxiety Issues, Couples/Marital Issues, Depression
Other Articles/News by Dr. Margaret Paul:

Are You Addicted To Love?

By

Have you ever felt confused about whether your feelings in a relationship were coming from a healthy place or from a wounded place? This is Mari's concern: "How would you describe the difference between obsession/addiction and devotion? When you are deeply in love and moved to be emotionally and physically intimate with someone, how can you tell ... Read more

How Do YOU Feel About That? Avoiding Projection In Relationships

By

"I think I'm an open person, but Sarah keeps telling me how closed I am. She gets furious when she wants to talk about our relationship and I don't." Matthew, in his late 20s and married to Sarah for 2 years, had consulted me due to relationship problems and was feeling a lot of confusion about their relationship system. "There ... Read more

Get Over Fights Like A Grown-Up

By

Most couples fight at times. Unless they fight unfairly—hitting below the belt and saying very hurtful things or becoming physically abusive—this is generally not a problem. Couples who engage in verbal or physical abuse need to either get help on both an individual and relationship level or leave the relationship. Ongoing verbal and physical ... Read more

See More

Ask The Experts

Have a dating or relationship question?
Visit Ask YourTango and let our experts and community answer.

FROM AROUND THE WEB