I so loved the boys growing up…at times went a bit crazy over them; especially ones that made me feel all girly and sexy inside, with butterflies dancing around the stomach. I invested a lot of time ideally imagining who the right prince or king would be; would he be endearing and kind, or an edgy bad boy?
Unbeknownst to how childhood conditioning created my rose colored glasses, I’d invariably attract the bad boy; the hot drive-by, love em, leave em kind. My b.s. radar was broken so it took quite a few hard knocks to change direction; or so I thought.
My first marital relationship quickly turned into a hot mess. Without disclosing too many gory details, out of respect for children born of this relationship, let’s just say it taught how wearing rose colored glasses can be the cruelest of plot twists.
Had I followed inner guidance's blaring flags during the initial dating process, would have caught the "behind the scenes" narratives; yet by focusing too far in the direction of appearances that held familiar spirits around dysfunctional boundaries, a creation of confusing messages got activated in my mind.
The confusion centered around whether or not a marital commitment would be the best avenue to take with regards to our son; who was six months old by that time. Being raised in a society where having a child out of wedlock still felt taboo, we both jumped into this arrangement, more to appease his family rather than ourselves, which quickly surfaced after legally binding ourselves and moving across the states to a new environment.
The entire theme of this relationship centered on becoming courageously empowered through discovering ways to trust and value my own intuitive gut and simultaneously find an avenue to financially stand on my own two feet in the midst of constant, disempowering verbal and mental shade thrown my way; both publicly and privately.
I learned to dig deep inside my heart and find a safer space with spirit who would assist with the remembrance of innate worth; as it was obvious there was never going to be a happy ending with a man I literally changed an entire livelihood, physical environment and last name for.
Needless to say, it was a tough and challenging road that finally took a right turn 7 years and two children later. The day I courageously drew a line in the sand around what was no longer going to be tolerated was the most liberating experience in my grown up life.
Fast forward three years later. Marital relationship number two. Totally different personality with the dating process starting out fun, exciting and heartfelt. We seemed to connect on a deeper level of intimate friendship and care. He appeared calm and wise in his engagement with my two children and very attentive to my needs and desires.
He seemed to have a great relationship with his family and friends. We were in our 30’s and things felt like they clicked as I was attracted to all the activities he was involved, as they seemingly resonated with similar values of mine as well.
Within the first year of our marriage, it became evident that marrying someone too early in the dating process, who had never been a parent, was not the best choice for either of us.
Shortly after our wedding night, learned I was pregnant for the third time. After her birth, absent any extra family support, the initial romance soon got buried under challenges that blending a family together can bring.
It became easier for this man to stay on the fence of indecision rather than jump in with both feet regarding important decisions that required both our input; so eventually found myself alone dealing with the majority of parenting choices and responsibilities. Too many issues created anxiety for him, so he defaulted to his conditioned response of ignoring stuff til it went away.
Although this definitely wasn't what I signed up for, the inability to express emotional frustration and disappointment created lots of see-saw, fight or flight behaviors during our most challenging conversations.
I agreed to let go of an outside career and became a full time mother when our child was born, yet that action went completely unacknowledged and unappreciated; biting me in the ass years later while attempting to build an entrepreneurial career and seeking spousal support towards the endeavor.
The initial love did not last because it was based on a set of superficial, unconscious conditions and expectations neither of us had ever verbalized until the marriage became a state of emergency through attempting outside counsel to put it back together.
In hindsight, we simply never built a lasting commitment of well-being in our relationship and that reality slowly seeped into our communications by creating numerous rips and tears in the fabric of our particular circumstances. The marriage became in paper only while we endured one another out of a conditional obligation of co-parenting three kids.
In that marriage I discovered how hidden conditions and expectations can wreck havoc on relationships designed to expand and grow. Human beings just don’t stay the same, regardless of the appearances of daily habits and behaviors. We arrive as souls designed to evolve through life’s ever-changing circumstances, and if we don’t, we end up stunting our natural, evolutionary process.
Nature is wise in the teaching of there always being a season for everything.
I learned a lot about owning and expressing my needs, wants and desires in my second marriage. Life in that relationship helped create healthier boundaries regarding self love and acceptance, as well as a daily regime that nurtures, honors and acknowledges inherent value and worth; regardless of anyone else’s opinion or validation.
Regardless of two divorces, I’m still open to romantic love with a man as it can be fun and sexy with the right partner; yet that path has to begin with ourselves, as it’s the only way to know for sure whether or not the love and honor we exchange is of equal measure.
If you find yourself in a relationship that is neither growing, nor expanding, I invite you both to do yourselves a favor; either find your way back to the love that attracted you in the first place, or part ways in the most amicable way possible.
For an interesting article regarding when it may be time for couple's therapy
Life is too short and love is to precious to simply endure, or exist within a dying or broken down relationship.
Til Next Time,