Have you ever been in a situation where you find yourself fighting hard to get a relationship off the ground? You are sure it has the makings of a meaningful partnership so you invest time, encouragement and most of all love in the person concerned. Your mind is set and any doubts that flutter past are waved away because you are convinced you are doing the right thing with the right person. And maybe for a short while you are, but what happens next confuses you because it is unexpected, it creeps up, slaps you in the face.
Even though in your heart you feel you love this person, you also know they are very lucky to have you loving them, because you believe in yourself and your capabilities. So, when after a flying start – where affection and time are lavished on you – an empty vacuum opens up, you become bewildered as to why this could possibly happen. They still smile at you in that way and want to make love to you every night.
But you feel something is missing. You search for what had been, bustle around, placating them and trying to make sure all their needs are met – but they don’t seem to give much in the way of return. In fact they behave as if nothing has changed and carry on buying you flowers and hoping for routine intercourse as if this is all the stimulation you need from a relationship.
What has happened is plain to see in retrospect: they feel they have you in the bag. You are in their life, in their bed and on their mind. They do not need to do anything more. You are theirs. They need sex, but require less mental and emotional stimulation than you, so they wrongly feel that sex is the main stimulus you need too.
It is not. You are vibrant, intelligent and thoughtful. What on earth would possess them to feel the work is done?
This is a scenario which has happened to me and I am sure you too. At the time it happens, however, you are often so embroiled in the relationship it is difficult to see the wood for the trees. It becomes easier to blame yourself. You must be inadequate in some way; ungrateful in some way; spoilt in some way. In short you begin to believe it must be your fault. After all, how could your perception of this person have been so out of kilter?
So what should we look for in a lover before we begin a relationship? We should certainly try to be objective with regards to genuine emotional and intellectual compatibility. Once a couple fall in love their view of this is often obscured and it becomes easy to dive headlong into a partnership that lacks durability because there is too little common ground.