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  • Writer's pictureDr. J Rodriguez

Defining A New Relationship Is Like Defining The Shape Of Ocean Water

In times of doubt and despair, the need for security may drive us a bit mad by tempting us to define our novel relationships in absolute terms. Defining a new relationship is like defining the shape of ocean water. Are we strangers? Are we acquaintances? Are we friends? Are we friends with benefits? Are we lovers? Are we soulmates?

These questions are often feeble attempts to define the ineffable. Like ocean water, novel relationships are fluid, and any attempt to define a particular dynamic with absolute certainty and total clarity is a recipe for rigidity, especially at the start of a relational process.

Imagine trying to put the ocean in a bucket of water. The water in the bucket stops being the ocean, because attempting to contain a body of water in a simple container is an exercise in futility.

So, what's the central issue here? What's behind the motivation to define a new dynamic with total clarity? Why do we need to define a new relationship in the first place?

The truth is: We want the other person to be our "you." We want the other person to be "our person." We want the other individual to fit into the box we've created for them in our mind. Why? Because we want certainty. We want clarity. We want total predictability, so that we can count on the other to show up, and give us what we want when we want it.

And, what's worse, we want to be able to "call out" the other person when she or he doesn’t show up for us in the way that we want, so that we can feel entitled to complain about her or his lack of support in our times of need.

Let's be honest: This dynamic is not a relationship. Essentially, this dynamic is a narcissistic wet dream. In other words, this dynamic is all about "us" and not about "the relationship."

Are you longing for a deep relationship? If so, then allow an ocean of unbridled possibilities to be present in world gone wild with the idea of perfect predictability.

With this new perspective at your disposal, you might just feel a bit more safe, a bit more sane, and a bit more humane than ever before, because absolute certainty and total clarity are no longer fixed needs. Now, these fluid features of your experience are temporary preferences that you can release in this moment and the next.

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