Mike sent me a comment for the last entry. I wanted to publish my reply here. Mike said that "Real love is always a two way street, it has to be or someone will get hurt...bad. " He went on to cite his past experiences and how the pain lingers for years.
You are exactly right about the pain Mike. The hurts caused by bad relationships can overshadow the rest of our lives. And you are right that in order to have a wonderful relationship there must be "real love" on both sides.
It is possible though for real love to exist in a bad relationship.
Real love CAN be a two way street. Real love that will bless an entire family MUST be a two way street. Real love that doesn't produce pain is always a two way street. Unfortunately, I've seen many individuals enter into a relationship where their love was very real but their partner was a total selfish jerk and did nothing but hurt them. The jerk's love was definitely not real, but that didn't diminished the real love of the victim.
My point in pointing out that some love is not real is to ask people to think about what you are getting into. The consequences of a "jerk's selfish" love will be devastating.
If you marry someone that does not have "deep - real- unselfish" love for you, you will suffer in one or more of the following ways.
1. You will lose your freedom. They will control every part of your life.
2. You will be hurt on a regular basis. We all like to think we can suffer for those that we love and do it willingly. We can't. At some point the pain will escalate and be more than we can bear.
3. Some people who are fantastic at sacrifice think they can be the "superman or superwoman" for a person who has no idea how to love. They want to swoop in and save the life of their partner and think that by doing so, the power of that act will be so overwhelming that the selfish person will change. They think that their love will be enough for the both of them and in the end their sacrifice will be acknowledged. - It never happens that way.
4. Maybe the person you are with isn't mean but rather is like a child and just extremely selfish. Maybe he/she doesn't control you, but life is always about them. You can bear it because you have children, or he/she makes a good salary, you do have fun when they are happy and getting what they want; but...life is always about them. It won't take long for you to realize that life for you holds no surprises, no acknowledgement of your sacrifices, no attempt to give you what you want and you constantly feel depressed and disappointed.
5. Because one of the other consequences have happened you will do one of the following:
a. You will blow up like a bomb and blast out of the marriage leaving a path of destruction behind you.
b. You will change and become just like them living in a constant struggle for power and losing all hope of achieving peace.
c. You will die inside. Little by little. Day by day you become less and less of who you were. You give up and suffer in quiet telling yourself that it's better to be abused than to leave. Consequently you watch all your dreams and hopes die with you.
In answer to your comment Mike, I do believe one partner can have "real love" for another person and not have it returned.
But I also believe if you see that selfish nature going into a relationship - RUN AWAY. Don't go there. The belief that your "real love" can make up for their inability to love is false. Your love, no matter how strong will never make up for people who can't see how to return that real sacrificial love.
If you are dating, it is your responsibility to find a person that you can trust that will love you in the same way that you love them. That is your only hope for having a marriage that truly inspires and will be "happily ever after."
If you get even the slightest hint that they won't, please don't go into the excuse mode to make it okay. Stiffen that upper lip, cry those tears and BREAK UP. Walk away. Finding a mate is not the same as picking up a lost puppy. Dysfunctional people don't change because you clean them up and give them everything they want. Dysfunctional people are not changed by sugary love - they will find a way to manipulate it, to push your buttons, to squeeze you for every thing they can while they walk away without even leaving a tip. Your life will never be what it could if you are coupled with someone who doesn't understand real love.
I have counseled with many people who thought they could be the exception. They would be the one that changed another person's life because of their love. Watching their pain when their plan didn't work is sometimes more than I can handle. I am only able to control my anger when I realize how trapped they feel and how important it is to administer compassion to the victim.
Please don't gamble with your marriage. If anything isn't right before the wedding day - even if it's just before you walk down that aisle, Don't do it. Don't gamble with your entire life. Wait for the two-way street!
I personally believe that we should have some people tattooed. If they are selfish, mean controllers that only want their own way and don't understand how to sacrifice for another - let's tattoo their forehead with the letters CJRA. Then every time they are approached by a sweet, kind giving individual - there would be fair warning. The sweetheart would see CJRA and know, "controlling jerk - run away!"
I'm not bitter am I? I've seen too many consequences and cried with two many hurt sweethearts.
What do you think?
God loves you,