Do you know that most marriages fail because of ignorance in a relationship due to lack of emotions on one side?
One person showers love, other fails to return. Mind it ignorance in a relationships is not always due to lack of emotions on one side. In fact there are many other factors.
Sometimes, the problem with emotions in a relationship is not that they are missing, it is that they are amiss—they are not what they should be. Instead of love, there is anger; instead of warmth, there is cold and with this emotions no marriage can improve.
I would like to spend some time in this article discussing a very common pattern, which creates a great deal of discomfort for couples.
For many couples, a great deal of animosity is formed from this pattern of ignorance in a relationship
#1 Intimacy & Ignorance
People have an inherent fear of two things: intimacy and ignorance. We fear both people being too close to us and too far from us.
But we all have different levels of this fear, and different amounts of closeness and distance that triggers the fear.
The balance between the two points of fear ends up being the boundaries of a relationship. These two points are connection and distance.
First, a little explanation of each fear. The Fear of Ignorance part is related to our concern of losing those whom we need for survival.
It is rooted in being helpless infants completely dependent upon another for all assistance, care, and nurture.
Unfortunately, it is impossible for any caregiver, no matter how great, to meet all the needs of a helpless child all the time. (If you are a parent, reflect on this reality.)
So we all leave childhood with some level of fear that we will lose people whom we desperately need.
While this fear makes perfect sense for the infant and child, it is far less helpful for the adult.
This fear does not have to be a rational fear (in fact, it is not) for it to affect our lives. When we are captured by a fear of ignorance, we tend to hold on to the person we fear will leave us.
The Fear of Intimacy is at the other end of the continuum. But think, instead of the infant, to the two year old.
As the two year old is actively saying “no” at every turn, he or she is really establishing that he or she is separate and different from his or her parents.
The fear at that age is that a parent will overwhelm the child.
As the child is beginning to be aware of his or her separation, he or she is also aware that a parent is far more powerful and capable of inflicting parental decisions against a child.
This same awareness that is part of the development of a child—discovering that there is a separation between the child and the rest of the world, creates a fear of being overwhelmed and lost in relationship with another.
Again, a perfectly appropriate response for a child creates a deep-seated fear in the adult of becoming lost in a relationship.
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#2 Between The Fears
Between the fears of intimacy and ignorance lie the points of a relationship: connection and distance.
Every relationship struggles to find the appropriate and healthy point between having connection and distance between the two people.
Unfortunately, there is no correct point for the balance. And unfortunately, it is unlikely there will be a match between the two in the relationship.
In other words, at various times, and about various issues, the two people will feel different needs for connection and distance.
With two different people, and two different expectations for distance and connection, the potential for misunderstanding quickly escalates.
The possibilities begin to emerge. When one needs more distance, the other might desire more connection, and vice versa.
The two find themselves creating a back-and-forth dance to regulate the amount of connection and distance in the relationship.
Now add in the two points of fear. When one needs distance, the other may discover a strong fear of ignorance.
When one needs more connection, the other may discover a strong fear of intimacy.
Suddenly, the dance between a couple to maintain closeness and distance becomes laden with difficulties.
There are multiple opportunities for misunderstanding, hurt feelings, unmet needs, and complete bewilderment.
#3 Dealing With The Mix
Emotions are often amiss because of this powerful mix of interaction. Over time, the inability to match distance and closeness with each other transforms into hurt.
This hurt often builds to resentment and anger, especially when one or both feel that needs are not being met.
Because of our culture, it is particularly difficult for someone to tell another that he or she “needs” something. We have been raised to reject our own needs.
Unfortunately, this has a boomerang effect. We end up trying to get our needs met in manipulative, indirect ways.
Marriages are partly based on a willingness to acknowledge the existence of these needs, and angry to meet these needs together. And by the way, having needs is different than being a “needy person.”
I recently had a discussion with a group about needs. One of the members felt that marriages should be between two needless people, independent of the other.
The thoughts I shared reveal that I do not believe people are designed to be islands, separate from each other. Instead, we are designed to need and be needed.
While this can become pathological, it is not necessarily so. In fact, too much independence can be just as pathological.
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#4 Understanding Anger
Many people experience anger in their relationship, but find themselves at a loss on how to “get rid of it,” as I often hear. Part of the difficulty in moving away from anger is rooted in our understanding of what anger is about.
Since we often feel anger as a lead emotion in a given situation, we begin to believe anger is the primary emotion.
In other words, we believe the angry response is really about anger. IT IS NOT!
Anger is a secondary emotion. It is not the primary emotion. But since it feels so strong, it often drowns out the true primary emotion.
The primary emotion is more often something in the neighborhood of hurt, disappointment, or dismay.
This is not to say that anger is not an important emotion. It is. It lets you know that a part of your Self feels under attack.
Anger’s role is to protect the self, to push away the perceived threat. But when we forget about the primary emotion, that emotion is never addressed.
Over time, the relationship gets more and more rooted in anger and resentment.
But this misses the reality of the relationship failing to meet the needs of the individuals. And equally important, it misses the reality of hurts and disappointments that are never addressed.
The task of marriage is to move beyond the emotion of anger and toward the true primary emotions and create a happy marriage full of love and positivity. Dealing with those emotions causes the anger to evaporate.
But when the primary emotions are ignored, the secondary emotion of anger only gains extra strength in an attempt to protect the Self from any further damage.
#5 Your Turn to Fight Ignorance in a relationship (your own relationship)
! When your spouse responds to you angrily, remind yourself that this is not the primary emotion. It is your task to move toward the primary emotion, not react to the anger.
! When you respond with anger, remind yourself there is a primary emotion, and work to identify that emotion. That is the emotion that must be addressed in the relationship. Anger often prevents that from happening.
! Also, shift your understanding of anger from an attack on you to the revelation of something by the other person. It is a gift, albeit much like being handed a porcupine! Still, there is something soft inside, because it is really
Someone sharing something important to him or her.
! Finally, work on accepting the idea that dealing with the primary feelings will cause the angry feelings to dissipate—on their own!
I will stop here. I hope you enjoyed reading this article on ignorance in a relationship. If you really liked it please do not forget to share it on your favorite social media.
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