Daily Archives: February 8, 2015

How could loving someone be wrong?

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He loves me. He loves me not. He loves me. He loves me not. According to folklore, small daisy petals plucked one-by-one hold the mystical fate of the female heart.

IMG_2277For the female heart that loves too much, the desire to be loved causes a defective analysis of the relationship, even for the intelligent and mature woman. Love conquers all, the saying goes, so a woman who longs for a man’s love tries harder and gives more in the relationship, and discounts his emotional distance, compulsive behaviors or broken promises. In an attempt to be “the one” who really understands him, the woman who loves too much sympathizes with a man’s current inability to love her back because of his past hardships or current struggles, and sees in him the man he could be with her love.

The woman who loves too much convinces herself that this man just needs someone to help him, to show him what love really is. He just needs to be understood and supported, and then he’ll be able to give the deep expressions of caring and commitment she longs for. She simply has to show him that her love will make the difference.

How could too much love be unhealthy? One would think that loving another person too much would be an attribute in a relationship. Sadly, that’s not the case. When women love too much they ensure painful relationships overflowing with great hurt, uncertainty, and disappointment.

Are you a woman who loves too much? A woman loves too much when her partner consistently mistreats her and yet because of a faulty analysis she can’t leave the relationship or change it.

In the New York Times Best Seller book Women Who Love Too Much, Robin Norwood writes: When being in love means being in pain, we’re loving too much. When most of our conversations with friends are about him–his problems, his feelings and nearly all IMG_0972our sentences begin with “he…,” we’re loving too much. When we excuse or tolerate his bad temper, moodiness, indifference, or put-downs as problems due to an unhappy childhood and we try to become his therapist, we’re loving too much. When we read a self-help book and underline all the passages we think would help him, we’re loving too much. When we don’t like many of his basic characteristics, values, and behaviors, but we put up with them thinking that if we’re only loving enough he’ll want to change for us, we’re loving too much. When our relationship jeopardizes our emotional well being and perhaps our physical health and safety, we’re definitely loving too much.

In spite of all its heartache and regret, loving too much is very common for women, and men, too. For many of us, it’s been a recurrent pattern that isn’t understood. In Love Smart, Dr. Phil McGraw writes: To get the relationship you want, you have to be willing to take an honest, even brutal, look at what’s going on and what’s going wrong.  love smart dr phil mcgraw

IMG_0968We need to look at the faulty analysis that causes so many women and men looking for love, to find unhealthy, critical partners instead, and why the qualities that initially attract us to a partner aren’t necessarily those that make the person a good partner. When we know a relationship isn’t good for us, why do we have trouble leaving it? Loving becomes loving too much when our partner is emotionally clueless, has an addiction, is critical, or controlling and yet, we cling to the partner he or she could be.

It’s an old cliche in the field of psychology that people are attracted to someone just like the mother or father with whom they struggled while growing up. This concept isn’t quite accurate. It’s not so much that the mate we choose is just like Mom or Dad, but that with this partner we’re able to feel the same feelings and face the same challenges we encountered growing up–we’re able to replicate the atmosphere of childhood already so well known to us, and use the same maneuvers in which we already so practiced and are comfortable with.

This is what, for most of us, constitutes love. We feel “at home” and comfortableIMG_1608 with the person with whom we can make all our familiar moves and feel all our familiar feelings. Even if the moves have never worked and the feelings are at times painful, they’re what we know best. We feel that special sense of belonging with the person, who allows us, as his/her partner, to dance the steps we already know. It’s with him/her that we decide to try to make a relationship work.

It follows that there really are no coincidences in relationships, no accidents in marriage. There’s no more compelling chemistry than this feeling of mysterious familiarity when a woman and a man come together.

Think about it. In caring, Sandy

©All rights reserved, 2014, Dr. Sandy Nelson, E-Couch.net