What I want in a relationship

A while back I was on vacation and I was asked by the person I was seeing at the time, “What are you looking for in a relationship?” I answered what at the time I thought were honest answers. Reflecting back on it, they were honest, but the weren’t vulnerable answers, not the kind that showed him what I truly need in order to thrive and have a successful and fulfilling relationship. One where he never has to guess what my needs are, but because I let them be known from the beginning, he knows how to meet them..

If you think about it, that’s fair. Fair to him for you to set the stage as to what your expectations are and that he knows how to give you want you need to strengthen and grow your relationship into something deeper. Mystery in relationships is good, but a mind blowing guessing game is a sure way to spell disaster down the road. You can’t get disappointed if you don’t tell him what you want, and in order to do that, you have to KNOW what you want.

When I was asked what I want, I said things such as  I like confidence in a man. That’s an attribute. How is confidence in a man going to fulfil me? It’s not. It’s going to attract me initially, and then what? Nothing, That’s right, attributes aren’t going to grow your connection and make you feel secure and desired.

So fast forward to Valentine’s Day. I took my kids along with a male friend of mine to a hockey game. My friend asked what I had done in the past for Valentines Day. I sheepishly had to admit that I had never gone out to celebrate Valentine’s Day and in 24 years of marriage and had not been given flowers on Valentine’s Day ever. So then my daughter started to chime in that usually my birthdays were forgotten too, along with anniversaries, Christmas etc.  At the time it seemed like just a conversation. Afterwards, I realised how exposed I felt. The way I had been treated in the past really was my secret. To admit it feels like a failure, as if I don’t value myself. The opposite is true, I value myself to the point that my then husbands could no longer devalue me. Gifts or no gifts, acknowledgements or no acknowledgements I still have worthm but my sense of value does not hinge on them recognising it. Sad, because if they had realised how they could have validated me as their wife or shown appreciation, then we would likely still be married today.

Anyway, I digress. All of this really brought to the surface of what I should have said to the man I was dating at the time. I should have said that I am seeking just two things. Two of the most powerful and important things to me.

Firstly that I would be his one and only. That he would commit to me, and that I would never have to question his loyalty, honesty or devotion.

Secondly, that he would not let me down or disappoint me. I have loved three men in my life, and the last two managed for different reasons really let me down. You can trust and love all you like, but unless that other person is on the same page and wants to give to you too, and connect with you on that deeper level, it is meaningless. Your relationship can never grow to its potential.

So, ask yourself before someone else does what you truly want. Yes, we all like tall, dark and handsome, but steering away from attributes, what are you looking for that will make your heart soar, that will make you feel like you’ve won the lottery and make you blissfully happy and content?  Be raw, be vulnerable, and be willing to tell the next man that asks you. When we know what we want and express it, is when we come into our own and start living our life with purpose.

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