Monday, June 9, 2014
how we love
jeremy and i had a counseling session a couple months back in which i sorta kinda freaked out.
i knew i had sorta kinda lost it because after i finished yelling and waving my hands, but while i was still crying and blowing my nose, i looked up and realized jer had gotten real quiet and our doctor had gotten real calm and it hit me...when you let outsiders (in this case a professional therapist) in on the brutally honest moments it's sorta kinda embarrassing!
but after embarrassment fades you begin to discover that healing thrives in brutal honesty.
my rant and jeremy's reaction to it allowed our psychologist to truly see for the first time the pattern that exists within our relationship. before we left his office that day the doctor suggested we read the book how we love by milan & kay yerkovich, a book about marriage and how our current relationships are affected by the imprints we received during childhood. the book does not focus on blame for the way we were or weren't raised, it simply helps us to see why we love the way we do.
and how we can fix it. ha!
i bought the book that afternoon, dove in as soon as it arrived on my doorstep, but stopped dead in my tracks at the beginning of chapter two. you see the authors base their premise about marriage relationships on one question. it's a question that kept me from opening the book again for nearly one month.
can you recall being comforted as a child after a time of emotional distress?
what's your answer?
how you answer that question, along with other information about your childhood, will place you into one of five categories. as it turns out i am a vacillator and jeremy is an avoider.
"when these two imprints collide, avoiders constantly feel in trouble for disappointing their spouse. the passionate connection and intense good feelings of the early relationship are replaced by the vacillator's anger, hurt and disappointment that comes as 'real life' sets in. avoiders retreat and take care of themselves just like they've always done. while avoiders are learning to deal with their feelings, vacillators are devastated when the connection is lost. they feel abandoned as they discover the avoider's inability to connect. initially willing to work hard to get the avoider to respond and engage, vacillators become increasingly angry when they see the avoider is incapable of providing the consistent connection they desire."
that is exactly us.
that is our pattern, played over and over again in many different way throughout our nearly ten years together.
we are working hard to change our imprints and our patterns.
it's a brutal, honest, reallyreallygood process where healing is growing.
i've written more than i intended to here. the initial point of this post was to encourage you to buy this book. our psychologist believes it will really help jeremy and me and although i have not finished it (i'm digesting it slowly) i highly recommend it too. i think it would be an excellent resource for any person in a relationship whether they are struggling or not. i am fascinated by the concept of "why we do the things we do" and this book has been a huge help - a jeremy & rachel owner's manual? - in finding out some of the causes for the effects we've noticed within our marriage.
it might be a great owner's manual for some of you out there too.