What to do when you partner changes?

The only thing that you can guarantee in a relationship is that your partner will change.

What happens when you look at your mate and realize you hardly recognize them? Or as I hear from many clients that their partner has “changed the rules of the game” and feel frustrated because they were not brought in on the decision.

Often one partner will be prompted by a general dissatisfaction to do some inner work, or skip the introspection and get a little wacky. This may bring on changes that make you feel, “I didn’t sign up for this!” However, when we are in a committed relationship, it is just that: a commitment not a convenience.

What then, can we do when our partner changes?

Relax into the certainty that nothing is permanent and:
1. Know that this may be a phase of development, and is necessary for their growth into the person they are to become.
2. Allow that it may be that they are trying on a new way of being to see how it fits. It may feel like the pendulum has swung from one extreme to another in which case, it will likely balance out to a whole new and more grounded mate.
3. Celebrate their growth and discuss it as a team during times of emotional neutrality.
4. Ask them how you can support them. This is a powerful step that shifts one from victim (and feeling like it is being done to you) into pit crew (and observing it is being done near or in collaboration with you).

We need things to constantly be different. The breath I take now is different from the one I had a moment before.

“When we can see the miracle of impermanence…our sadness and suffering will pass.” ~Thich Nhat Hahn

A bird takes flight: it does not remain static. It changes position moment by moment.

Instead of judging our changing partner as “bad” or “inconvenient” what if we framed it in a way that we celebrated their flight, from one place to the next as beautiful and graceful as it is not as we think it should be.

This way of being for our partner is gracious and allows them the dignity of their experience. When we stop controlling or judging their way, then they can more easily soar into who they are meant to be.

Your Assignment: Are you able to support your partner in all that life may bring? Do you provide a safe place from which he or she can fulfill all his/her dreams (no matter how cuckoo)? Are you willing to give them the dignity of their experience in order for them to stretch who they are meant to be?

Speak Your Mind

Tell us what you're thinking...
and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!