Not Getting What You Want – How We are Trained for Relationship Failure

The movement to connect people with their guides continues. As I did in previous weeks’ messages, I’m providing an update on the most often discussed topics. The reason for these updates is to gain clarity as to why the guides have asked for this, and to provide guidance. Here is what was most often discussed during this past week.

Not Getting What You Want – How We are Trained for Relationship Failure

There were several great topics that came out of this week’s sessions, but there was one that really stood out.

Callie (not her real name), a young wife and mother was struggling to understand why her marriage was so unsatisfying. As Callie stated, “No matter how hard I try, I cannot get what I want from my marriage.”

Tuning into her guides, the source of Callie’s struggles became crystal clear. Callie was experiencing the painful, frustrating results of a relationship built on the faulty relationship foundation that society has taught us.

Society has taught us that to have a successful relationship we must give to receive. We are taught this in school, in church, and reinforced at home by our parents. We are told that doing so will net us a partnership that will sustain love into our golden years. Who doesn’t want the comfort and security of knowing that they will be with that one special person until they day they die?

It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that what society taught us about how to have a happy and successful relationship was somehow flawed. The flawed part is that they left out two very important parts of that whole giving and receiving thing. First, they left out the part about giving what is asked, not what we think our partner needs. Second, they left out the part about receiving; if we want to receive something in return that makes us happy, we must tell our partner what that is. I’ll explain further.

Giving What is Asked

How many times do we give to our partners only to feel that they are not grateful? How many times do we give to our partners only to receive nothing in return? When I posed the question to Callie, her response was, “That’s the story of my life. I feel I give and give and people just take advantage of it, especially my husband.”

“That,” I replied, “is because we often give what is not asked for.” “Not only that,” I continued, “what we give we expect the other person to appreciate.” The problem here is that we expect people to go against human nature. People don’t appreciate, nor do they value what they have not asked for, wanted or needed.

Asking for What We Want in Return

I’ve spoken of this in previous messages, but since it is a vital part of a successful relationship dynamic, I’ll repeat it. If we want to be happy and feel satisfied in our relationships, we must say what we want. Of course that is sometimes easier said than done. Why? We are taught that asking for what we want is being selfish and we cannot–under any circumstances–be selfish! If we can’t ask for what we want, then how do we ensure that we get what we want? We must resort to a covert and crazy-making game that society has taught us to play. I call it the, “Read My Mind” game.

In this game we give what we feel our partner wants and then expect him/her to read our minds, figure out what we want, and give that to us–without us having to ask. If our partner guesses correctly, we feel loved, appreciated, valued and satisfied. If our partner doesn’t, then one of us is to blame. If we are to blame it is because we didn’t give enough or give the right thing. (Of course we never asked what they wanted…)

If our partner is to blame then it is because he/she doesn’t value us enough and is a selfish *****. Get the picture? When we step back and look at it, this game makes no sense at all. Why? We are not mind-readers. Furthermore, it sets us up to feel unloved, unworthy and unappreciated. So what is the solution?

The solution is to become healthily selfish. As I explained to Callie, there is a difference between being selfish and being healthily selfish. When we are healthily selfish we take responsibility for getting our needs met by figuring out what we want and asking for it. Sometimes what we want or need requires a little compromise. In this case we make a deal that works for all concerned and form an agreement. This agreement is our verbal (and hopefully written) statement that we acknowledge each others need, along with our commitment to satisfying those needs. Pulling from “Agreements, the 6th Key of Compassion”, I gave Callie the example of the toilet seat, a need and potential point of conflict in many relationships.

The only sticking point in being healthily selfish is overcoming the fear and stigma associated with selfishness. That fear, and the belief behind it, strikes us at the very core of our being. Why? Society teaches us that selfishness is sinful and evil. lIf we are sinful and evil we have no right to exist, so if we are selfish we can lose our right to exist. No wonder we recoil at the thought of being called selfish.

When we step back and look at it, there is really no way to win. If we ask for what we want, we are condemned, if we don’t ask and hope that others will read our minds, we set ourselves up to be disappointed and feel like we are worthless. Crazy, isn’t it.

Again, the solution is to wise up to the reality that what society taught us does not enable us to create a successful relationship. And if we want to be happy we must risk being called selfish in order to learn how to get our needs met in a healthy win/win manner. As I explained to Callie, at some point in life must be willing to take that risk. Armed with a firm belief in our right to be healthily selfish, along with agreements to get our needs met, we will attain the satisfaction that we have sought for so long.

That’s it for this week. Hope this topic helps.

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