“The current question is, ‘How can this marriage meet my needs? The new question…(needs to)be, ‘What does our relationship need?'”
Harvelle Hendrix, Ph.D and Helen LaKelly Hunt, Ph.D in their excellent, need to be read book, Receiving Love
In my generation of family making we were taught to focus on how to get MY needs met. A lot of time was spent on self actualization: how do I take care of myself, how do I feel good about me, what do I do about…
I do not fault us. For generations we women learned how to take care of our men. We learned to be grateful for attention, opportunities, self needs getting met. We were like greedy fledglings ready to fly, those of us who were valiantly attempting to create family and stay sane/have a sense of self at all, in the 70’s and 80’s. All too easily, I fear, we lost focus of what was best for the family and convinced ourselves that if we as parent in the family, took care of ourselves, as in put on the oxygen mask first, the family would benefit.
I no longer believe that to be true. What I feel is imperative, wise, and flourishing is that WE figure out what needs to be done that is best for us as a couple so we can be the best parents, together co-creating a world for our family that best suits all of us. I believe if we do the co-creating and intentional nurturing the couple relationship needs, the family will benefit. And I also believe as each family learns to mindfully and consciously attend to each other’s needs it will begin to spill out into the world around us.
Eventually we could all be living in a kind thoughtful world where we look after each other, get our needs met by looking after others who in turn have our needs in mind, and we will no longer have any reason to fear there is not enough for all. Instead we will know to our core self that the world is safe for everyone and everyone has the love, support, nurturing and sense of belonging that we all deserve and desire.
It is your job, as a committed and primary partner, to do and say what it takes to help your partner feel safe. In turn, it is your partner’s job to do the same for you. We take care of each other, we have each other’s back, together we have what is needed to co-create a safe life for our family.
A similar approach and expectation world wide, for all living beings, will assure all of us that there is no need to fear violence, poverty, lack of education, being ignored or bullied, being homeless or having no medical care available when needed. There can become a norm that there is enough for everyone and everyone deserves to be safe and looked after.
- I am grateful for the precious couple who look after and help take care of my house
- I am grateful for the 23 years Clo and I had to look after each other and practice helping each other feel safe
- I am grateful for Aimee who looks after me with total commitment and affection
- I am grateful for four grown up children and their partner’s who love and look after me and whom I loved profoundly
- I am grateful for the energy and lack of physical pain I feel today
Love always, Nancy