Can you have both or is it an either/or sort of proposition?
I know I suggested lying to oneself as the next segment, but in peeling back the layers of this subject, relationships came up before the actual self—the self comes last, it seems.
In this recent news article there was an air of surprise that less Americans were getting married than a generation before.
Everyone seems to agree that marriage is hard work.
And that’s the problem.
Due to technological innovations very few of us are used to anything remotely close to hard work. Unless you are one of the 99% who must work manual labor jobs to support your family, our hard work is just not as hard as it used to be.
So without really signing off an any of it, what is considered hard work changed.
I am speaking the truth when I say spending a month overseas with my elderly parents was hard work. But is it comparable to working an eight hour shift underground in a coal mine?
Of course not. It would be crazy to make that suggestion.
But just by using the term “hard work” in this manner, our brains are changing, slowly, where the delineation between hard work and not hard work is. We don’t even have to be aware of this. Our brains do this on their own.
What does this have to do with relationship and honesty?
Our brains have evolved to do the least amount of work possible in a given situation. Much of what we once believed to be rational, logical thought processes, is purely emotionally driven guess work.
The problems any of us have in relationships can all be backward engineered to our own insecurities and issues—issues that may be buried or unrecognized by us. So if we are deceiving ourselves, sometimes unknowingly, how can we not lie to our partners?
Look at these statistics and consider how much truth is being told around dinner tables in America.
We are programmed almost from the beginning with other people’s ideas of what a relationship is or is not. We are shown ideals that we model our behavior and character after, both male and female, and then we try on the mask and many of us realize is it decidedly not one size fits all.
Albert Einstein of all people once said that the most beautiful thing one can experience is the mysterious. I agree, and I propose one of the most beautiful things one can do in a relationship is to try to be honest when fear tells you that you should not.
And that’s our boogeyman, ladies and gentlemen. Fear. It keeps us away from knowing ourselves fully and from expressing the truth.
Next time: The lying witch and the neurotic wardrobe.