I was coaching a young woman who was dating a man who wanted other partners at the same time. This was his choice. He was happy for her to have a relationship with anyone else as well, but she was not interested in dating other men. She wanted to be with him, so she accepted that he was dating two other women.
She wanted to know whether she was telling herself the truth about how she felt in the relationship and if polyamory was right for her. She came to me upset, wanting to leave the relationship. She was suffering mentally and emotionally, but she always had reasons why she wanted to stay. She would say he was "better" than anyone else she had been in a relationship with. She liked him. He did not beat her or physically abuse her. However, she was jealous of the other women he dated and she felt insecure.
She thought she had to do something to get over her jealousy and insecurity. She thought there was something wrong with her. When she got over that, whatever it was, she would not be jealous anymore. She would no longer feel insecure.
I asked her if she truthfully, with all her heart, accepted that she was ok being in a relationship with someone who had other partners. She took a moment, breathed into her body and said, "No". She started to cry. "But if I could just stop being jealous, it would be ok. I like him, he is a nice man."
I asked her if she could imagine herself being in a loving relationship. She said, "I can imagine being with a partner one-on-one. We are loyal to one another. We develop respect and intimacy with each other. We share romantic times together and communicate openly. We support one another through our deepest desires and our deepest heartaches."
I said to her, "While you were imagining your ideal relationship, how do you feel?" She said, "I felt free, warm and light." I said, "When else have you felt that way?" She told me how she had always wanted to study to be a vet but she thought she was not bright enough. One day, someone said to her, "Who said you are not bright enough?" She admitted she was the one who said it. Then she realised that she had a say in how bright she was and if she wanted to be a vet, she could study and become one. She felt alive, connected, peaceful and energised when talking about being a vet and being with animals.
I then asked her to feel what it was like being in her current relationship. She started shaking and cowering. Her voice softened. She started to cry again. "I feel terrible." Well I said, "Do you think it is normal for your body to feel bad in a relationship? What do you think and feel your body is telling you?" She said, "Choosing to be a vet is amazing. Choosing a relationship is difficult. Isn't it? Aren't relationships meant to be hard work?" she said.
We talked for awhile about her body telling her deep down she did not have the same beliefs as her "partner". She felt disrespected. Her body and her soul were in pain. No amount of trying not to be jealous and not to feel insecure would work if her underlying beliefs did not agree with polyamory.
It was the very structure of the relationship that caused her insecurity and mental anxiety. Her insecurity surfaced beliefs about not being worthy of having a relationship that was loving to her. This led to a vicious self–defeating cycle, feeding her insecurity, eroding her self esteem and turning her into a cowering, shrivelling, sad mess who suffered emotionally and spiritually.
It is not up to me to choose whether polyamory is right for other people or for this woman. I simply guided her to find out what was in her best interests. This allowed her to be able to choose freely to be in the relationship or be free to leave the relationship. She knew what was right for her after feeling the difference. Her body changed when she was choosing something that made her feel worthy and when she was choosing something that made her feel unworthy.
She needed to spend a little more time listening to her body. She was learning the difference between the messages that were arising from her pain and suffering and the messages that were arising from her joy, freedom and peace. She knew she had to look at her beliefs about her self-worth in a relationship. She had transformed her relationship with herself and about what work she was worthy to do. She listened to her passion and joy to be with animals. She could do it again for an intimate relationship.
You may not have an issue with polyamory, but there may be another core belief that you are over-riding. Doing something in a relationship which grates on your values and beliefs causes you suffering and anxiety.
Find The Truth: Eight questions to ask yourself about your relationship.
- Are you taking on a belief that does not resonate with you? Are you doing it for your partner to be loved and accepted?
- Where are you making do? Do you think this is as good as it gets?
- What is your body telling you? Are you refusing to listen?
- When does your body feel peace and joy in your relationship?
- When do you have mental anxiety and emotional suffering in your relationship?
- Where are you overriding your body by listening to all the voices inside your head?
- Have you identified which voice is the saboteur and which voice is your loving adult, who is there to look after your best interests?
- How does your body want you to take care of yourself so you feel good about who you are and your life?
If you are stuck on some life challenge, in one session, I can help you uncover the lies you are telling yourself and the truth. I guide people to access their own inner wisdom and uncover truths that are revealed when we connect body, mind and spirit. Many people commit to being mentored over a period of time to deepen and learn many methods. But one session for one challenge can be deeply transforming. Contact me if you would like to sign up for one session on firstname.lastname@example.org. If you are committed to a longer program, apply here. Get out of your head and into your body and see what sits right in your belly. We are born to be loved and to give love to ourselves and others. Feeling worthy and loved feels good deep inside our bodies. Are you feeling good from the inside out?
More on relationship questions from YourTango: