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There’s bad news, more bad news, and
eventually some good news, and then more good news when it comes to men and
women in relationships.
The first piece of bad news is that Jonathan
Gray was right: men and women truly are
different species. Men really are from
Mars, as embodied by the Roman God of war.
Women really are from Venus, as embodied by the Roman Goddess of
love. We genuinely see the world from
two wildly different perspectives. As
you might imagine, this can make it quite challenging to have a conversation,
never mind co-exist in a long term relationship. As bad as this news is, it’s not really new
news, and most of you have already figured this out.
The second piece of bad news is that when it
comes to long term relationships, men really do marry their mothers and women
marry their fathers. We are inexorably
drawn to the person who is the most capable of bringing out our deepest
childhood wounds so that we can have the opportunity to heal those wounds. Of course, we rarely thank our partner for
this opportunity, but if we do take it, powerful healing can result.
I see this repeatedly with my clients and
have experienced it in my own relationship.
Our romantic partners are mirrors for where we do not fully love
ourselves. We will attract, repeatedly
and assuredly, partners who bring up our original childhood wounds of
abandonment, unworthiness, and all of the myriad ways we split from our
authentic selves in childhood. Most of
our parents, and most of us as parents, are not capable of giving deeply
unconditional love. It makes sense;
people who didn’t receive unconditional love as children won’t naturally know
how to give it to their own children. It
is a learnable skill, but it takes a lot of work.