Published: 01/20/2014 - Updated: 03/17/2019
Author: Miriam Reyes8 Comments
We all have an essence, a personality, and sometimes we end up "negotiating" our way of being for the person we love. However, is this really love?
Often, people who know how to love someone will love the other no matter their faults, without forcing or trying to change them. If you do not love the other as he or she is, you may not love him/her, or you may be going about your relationship wrongly.
It is common to hear "I love you, but I'd like you to change, I would like you to be more patient, outgoing, hardworking, active, athlete, etc…". All of these changes involve a personality transformation of the person concerned, and in this way it can sometimes demonstrate that we are not really in love with that person, but instead with what we hope him or her to be, in other words an idealisation of them.
While the person who is required to change may decide to do it "for love", it is on the other hand very difficult to negotiate your personality and it can be depressing to have to meet requirements that sometimes we do not agree with. It is frustrating and at some point it may concluded that perhaps the demanding partner does not love you, because if they really did, they would accept you just as you are and therefore would not have to ask for these radical changes.
While some changes like stopping or altering bad habits are perfectly justifiable, because it means that the other person is interested in our good, demands to change our essence and/or personality is essentially an attack on the "self".
Don't stop being yourself
In some relationships when our "self" is weak, we can begin to acquire characteristics or indeed imitate those of your loved one. When this happens, we may begin to leave the things that define us, in order to acquire a new "identity" (which is rather the other's identity and what he or she wants) and this can be unhealthy. We can define identity as awareness or knowledge of that which defines us and distinguishes us as an individual person, however when we assume the identity of another, we are putting aside our "self" for the benefit of our partner.
When living with someone, it is natural to begin to acquire "stuff " of the other person, however when we change our personality, values and ideals, religion or even view of love, we can lead to an internal conflict that may be difficult to identify, and with time, it can also lead to emotional dependency in your relationship.
In the name of love
There may be many reasons that may drive us to put aside our "self”, just to be with a person.
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Loneliness: The fear of being alone can force us to abandon who we are in order to be accepted and be with someone.
The Miracle of Love: In many cases, we want to stay with people who do not value or want us, because we hope our love will be reciprocated one day, and although sometimes this can happen we must also know when our "self" is giving up too much for someone else.
Leaving your vocation: Quite often if we cannot develop our natural talents and we are led to abandon our vocation or hobbies because of limits imposed on us by our partner, we have the idea that when there is love we have to make sacrifices. However, this is not strictly necessary. Leaving our vocation/hobby leads to feeling unaccomplished or incomplete, which can in turn make us feel frustrated with ourselves and our partners.
Putting aside your values and principles: These should be non-negotiable, as each of us have values and principles that we have acquired through various events and experiences in life and when someone, in this case your partner, wants to negotiate these values and principles, we are inadvertently put our dignity at risk.
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What are your limits?
To love someone it is certainly important to learn to love yourself first. Identify and make clear to your partner the elements of your personality and personal values which are important to you, highlighting that it makes you happy as you are. This does not mean you should close yourself to the possibilities of growth, as change is possible and healthy, but always take into account how this change is going to benefit you and how you feel about it. If you feel that it is compromising your "self", then discuss it with your partner.
On the other hand, try to love your partner with all of their strengths and weaknesses in the same way you expect him or her to love you. Remember that nobody is perfect.
About the author
It is difficult to know or accept the fact of leaving yourself because you love someone, this is totally bad in any case, because you are the only one that really matters but when we love this is just easy to forget, then the problems may start even with your partner and the dependency of both.
Maybe there must be a balance, like giving and receiving, and this is complicated because always there is someone who gives more and receives less, and the opposite, but maybe we should consider the situation andwith the partner, to understand what is wrong in the relationship and if both want to do anything to change or maintain it
You have to mark the line between you and your partner, you can love him or her but you need to understand that maybe that would not survive until you die and this can happen, so you cannot just live from the other because if this happens when you break then you will be dead, and that is very stupid from my point of view
A relationship is a giving and receiving, and always you have to give more if the relationship is from both sides, if this is not happening, this is not a good thing to keep in life, losing you for someone else is one of the worst things that can happen especially when you are very young to understand how a healthy relationship works
The points that you show here are very interesting and indeed of great value if you are in this type of situation, I am a believer that the things hardly change and well, this is not a negative attitude but maybe in the relationships this is real, well, that is up to you and not me, but I was just saying what I think
Katherine Aguero Paredes
Sometimes, we did not realize we are stopping being ourselves due to “love”.
It is important to acknowledge we have to be who we are because real love is about true and real facts. We have to avoid the emotional dependance and that is up to us
This is a deeply spiritual discipline: to love unconditionally. Lovers, friends, and even parents struggle with this concept. To love because YOU ARE LOVING, to give love because it feels good for you to give, without needing someone else to do something, or be someone. As long as people continue to derive their sense of self in what others say/do/treat them, they will not be able to love unconditionally. I”m glad this is being addressed here.
There is definitely a fine line between “making compromises” to meet in the middle with your partner, and changing your “self” to suit the other’s needs, so basically loving unconditionally is about finding a balance that suits both people. Ultimately, if you have a specific personality trait or moral belief/value that you are unwilling to compromise on, those who mind do not matter… and those who matter do not mind! Unconditional self love is key, and you will eventually draw someone with the same energy towards you, if that is what you desire.