I push my husband to have relationships with people he doesn’t care to. I felt it was my job as his wife to keep those lines of communication open. I wanted to show him a level of love and support that he had yet to experience. But the truth of the matter is all my pushing led him to harbor resentment towards me. He didn’t want a relationship with people who showed only a casual, surface level interest in him and our family. I’ve been pushing since I first met him in 2012 and it was only this week he asked me to stop. I see where he is coming from. I think I have been projecting; I couldn’t fix my relationships with my parents and siblings, but I could try to help him. But I don’t just do it with my husband, people are constantly drawn to me during difficult times in their lives. I am compassionate, I am empathetic, I am an awesome listener, and I have a background in psychology. I have many tools and a healer’s heart… I get sucked in. I used to tell people I would be there for them any time they needed, and I would be. I would give of myself and my time until my cup was empty. It took a toll on my health, my family, and my own goals.
I needed a tune up so J and I started going to counseling again. He was tired of seeing me with such undefined boundaries in my life. I was tired of being emotionally drained. We have learned how to better communicate with one another, I have learned how to give my husband the floor to speak and how to truly listen to him. I was listening with my heart the other night when my husband told me to stop pushing his relationships with others. I listened. My first reaction was to defend my “why”, the reasoning behind why I wanted him to keep reaching, but I had to stop my inner dialogue so I could hear him.
The truth of the matter is, my husband is the most incredible man I’ve ever known. He has a lot to offer in a relationship. He is self actualized. He is driven, kind, humorous, loyal, and he is certainly deserving of people who will offer the same.
My 8th grade teacher passed on a word of wisdom to us that has stuck with me. He said, “Three things are guaranteed in life: You are born. You make choices. You die. What makes your life important are the choices you make everyday.” I hate surface relationships as much as my husband. I have a distain for mediocrity and repetition that doesn’t enrich one’s life, So when I recognize it in myself I am quick to cut it out. Yet, setting new boundaries is not usually something that you can just decide to do and that’s the end of it. It takes time, practice, constant work, and adjustment. The strength of any relationship, especially the relationship you have with yourself, is forged in times of growth.
The best is yet to come and I am ready for all the beauty this life has to offer.
“You don’t deserve to understand truth if all that you want is just the normal life.”
― Toba Beta, Master of Stupidity