Friday, June 10, 2011
Secret(s) to a Happy Relationship
Do you remember the end of Raiders of the Lost Ark when Indiana Jones finally finds the treasure and puts in the stone? The stone was the final missing piece that unlocks the treasure. The entire movie he battled bad guys and snakes to find the piece that mysteriously unlocked the ancient treasure.
I feel like I’ve found a missing piece to make my relationships work. My path the past few years feels a little akin to our hero, Mr. Jones. I’ve battled snakes and bad guys of my own on this long quest for love. Every “bad guy” who has crossed my path, fortunately has taught me a lesson. I’m not going to sugarcoat it and say it’s all sunny because that’s not true. The road was paved with a lot of heartbreak and pain. Literal pain. I don’t get too heavy in my blog, but I want you to know that I’ve been beaten up, stolen from, cheated on and worse. I only share this because if you are currently struggling with abuse, I want you to have hope and strength to make a change.
What makes me qualified to give relationship advice? Let’s see, zero PhD’s on my wall, I haven’t written any Mars /Venus books, or been on Dr. Phil spewing my wisdom. In fact, I have one failed marriage and 6 years of relationship pileups. Ya, I’d say I have a crappy relationship track record. However, what I do have is a lot of lessons learned through trial and error. That’s what sets me apart, a whole mess of wrecked trains all over the place. Yet each one came with a lesson, eventually I started learning from them, doh!
This isn’t just relationship advice, because it although it is It’s also more. (But wait there’s more… feels like a Shamwow commercial, huh?) It’s simple really and that’s what exactly makes it so profound, its simplicity.
What I think I have uncovered is a real treasure, magic beans, something that I think could really help a lot of women. Ok, so men skip down (5 ) paragraphs, this is just for the ladies. We are gonna talk nasty period stuff, menstruation so… nothing to see here… Ok ladies, that works every time, it’s just us. Huddle up and take a knee. This isn’t a sex tip or a beauty secret or how to look 10 lbs. thinner, yet I think it’s more key to your relationship than any of those things.
This is it, and it’s really simple. Make your relationship with him fun and playful. Especially in the beginning, don’t ask a lot of “down the road” questions. It’s ok to gently lay a foundation about what you’re looking for but not necessarily throw out a lot of ultimatums and definitely no finger shaking. Let the rest take care of itself, at least for a little while. Be his “soft place to land” at the end of the day.
This is exactly what I’m trying to do, is just to keep it fun, keep it light, definitely talk about deep stuff, but not even THINK about china patterns and shared mortgages. I want to have fun, tickle, play, and have pillow fights. Eventually, the days add up to weeks and years and the future takes care of itself. Is this realistic? Not exactly, there will always be reality, loss, sadness and trials. It’s a given of life, no doubt.
If I overthink things and ask “Where are things going”, they won’t. He’ll cross his arms, get defensive and retreat. If it’s fun, the chances are so much better of it working out. Is it a guarantee? Hell NO. But, I truly believe the chances are better.
Do you remember your first boy playmate? Maybe you played doctor, maybe you cut each other’s hair or he taught you how to grip the laces when you throw a football. It didn’t matter that he was a boy, he was fun and you were yourself, but a different version of yourself than with your girlfriends. Be that playmate with your lover, your boyfriend, your husband. At the core of each of our adult selves is a child, curious and wanting to happily skip rocks and cause just a little bit of trouble. I’m not writing this to have you create a man centered world. I’m saying this because no doubt the happiness you give will be returned to you in many ways.
Here’s a dose of reality, you are going to have a boss who's an ass, the car is going to need a repair when you don’t have the money and the kids are going to get sick. It’s reality, unfortunately. Your relationships, as much as possible should be your safe harbor from all that, your retreat.
You don’t have to spend a lot of money just send a surprise flirty text, build a fort in the family room and watch a movie or get a bottle of wine and candles and have a romantic night in the backyard. This is the stuff of life, my friends. It isn’t the exotic vacation or the dinner at the 5 star restaurant; it’s the simple pleasures in life. If you appreciate them, it will make him happier. Ultimately, he wants to make you happy. Cough, cough… so ladies that’s what you need to know to have better menstrual cycles. ;)
Ok, men thanks for coming back..
I’ve ruined many relationships by overthinking them, looking into the future, paging through bridal magazines after a few months. Looking back, I feel foolish and also relieved that I didn’t don a white lace dress and make promises to any of the men in my past. Whew! However, I’m open to the idea of it, someday.
I received one of the most incredibly rewarding comments yesterday about my blog. It always makes me happy when I’ve made you laugh, smile or given you a sexy glimpse of my boom-chicka-wa-wa. But yesterday’s comment struck a deeper chord with me. Someone wrote me thanking me for inspiring them to make a change in their relationship. After reading my blog, it made them realize that settling for less than what they deserved wasn’t going to work for them anymore.
Was it a single mom? No.
Was it a single dad? Nope
It was a single, never married man in an unhappy long distance relationship.
In my writing, I make a point to give advice indirectly. God knows I’ve made every mistake, some of them twice. However, today I’m going to give advice directly and simply. These are the three main things I’ve learned through my dating life.
1. Create fun relationships, as much as possible
2. Know your own worth and don’t settle for someone who doesn’t treat you accordingly. Don’t let ANYONE depreciate you.
3. If a relationship is 80% happy, stick it out and work on the 20% that isn’t.
Have a wonderful, playful weekend!
The Single Mom
If you want to be loved, be lovable. Ovid
Posted by singlemom at 9:46 AM