Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Expectation in Relationship

Reading Nineteen Minutes, the very well written book by Jodi Picoult has created this big jumble of thoughts in my head. I'm trying very hard to clear them out but it is not that simple. So I thought I'll write a post out of it - to settle my mind.

The latest thought is focused on Expectation in Relationship, spurred by the below quoted words from page 232:
Her mother sat down across from her. "Honey, what did you expect?"
Josie glanced up. "Nothing. I stopped that a long time ago." She stood up. "You're burning your pancakes," she said, and she walked back upstairs to her bedroom.
See - this is a fiction, but a very close-to-real-life type read. I know that this easily reflect people's relationships (with family, friends, partners, colleagues etc).
Questions: What's the story in their life? Why does it happen? Did the mom not try hard enough? What causes that kind of strain? Who's at fault?

This article helped in answering the questions ...
What we can expect in a relationship is to have a mutual sharing of caring love. We should expect of ourselves, that we need to share our love in a caring manner. What we can not expect in a relationship is to determine how, and in what manner, our partner will share their love with us.
Each person is the compilation and product of their past history. Along the way, we each learn by trial and error how to get our needs and desires fulfilled -- it has been an individual path to this point in time for each of us. We cannot expect another person's means of expression and action to be identical to our own methods -- they have gone through a different "school of life."
The expectation that our partner will provide our personal happiness is never possible. The attitude and actions of selfishness -- getting or taking from another for self-gratification is contradictory to living for the highest good of the whole situation. Harmonizing our attitudes, thoughts and actions with the highest good, ongoingly, is really what produces our feelings of happiness, ongoingly.

Note: Translate partner as the other party in the relationship.

I love my family very much. I was brought up in a family (a dad, a mom, 4 rather different -to each other- kids) with seemingly defined roles and responsibilities. Lately I feel the defined roles and responsibilities can make things trickier than necessary. We are working through it though. :) A while ago, I found this Steve Pavlina's writing,
"I love my parents and siblings unconditionally (I have two younger sisters and one younger brother). However, I haven’t had a particularly close-knit relationship with any of them for many years. There was no major falling out or anything like that — it’s just that my personal values and lifestyle have moved so far from theirs that there isn’t enough basic compatibility to form a strong common bond anymore."
Taken from the Understanding Family Relationship Problems article. I wonder - what would happen to the relationship within my family later on?

Other interesting article from Steve Pavlina on relationship:


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