As a society, however, we take on our partner’s problems, right? In sickness and in health, till death do us part, right? Well, yes, helping out with issues and problems is part and parcel to being in a relationship, but taking on the problems as one's own, or feelings as one's own, may leave the other individual bereft and devoid of making adult decisions and may leave them handicapped. Worse yet, not only does it leave them in a less powerful position to handle their own life, it sets up the scenario where the "fixer" also becomes the responsible party, the one to blame when things don't get fixed. Most “fixers” are doing it to be helpful, but in the end it often does more harm than good.
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Couples should definitely be there for each other, stand by each other, and give moral support. But the lines often get crossed when partner's try to take on or fix the other's problems, without a clear . By learning the difference and recognizing your own fixing behavior you can gain some well needed autonomy in adulthood and trust in your relationship.
Moushumi Ghose is a Sex Therapist in Los Angeles, CA.