The connection is powerful, the conversations are deep, your instinct tells you to trust this. But, lurking behind in the mind is a sneaky fear. Fear of the unknown, fear of the “what ifs”. Fears that make you do silly things at first to protect yourself- such as a delay in text response from your partner is met with a deliberate extended delay. Seemingly innocuous, right? But, these fears when left unguarded, lead to towering walls that cripple us from connecting honestly with ourselves, and as a consequence with our partner.
We can choose to have relationships with these walls up, in inauthenticity and in constant fear of losing what we have. Or we can choose to tear down these walls, express our true selves, work on a stronger core that can carry our scars without letting them taint new experiences, and explore the expansive freedom this allows us.
Because you are not afraid of new love, you are afraid of old pain
All it takes sometimes is to simply realize that you are scared. And, to also know that you have or can build the strength to express your vulnerability to the person and, the love that you trust.
This can be a starting point to breaking those walls, one brick at a time.
Lean into it
Being strong doesn’t mean you can’t or shouldn’t lean in. Right relationships are those that help you grow stronger while allowing you the comfort to seek a shoulder when needed. So express your need for support with your partner and express gratitude for their willingness to give it to you.
Your expression makes it easier for both to understand the reason for our sometimes irrelevant or unexpected behavior. Not being able to share only makes the wall a little taller.
Being flawed is the reality
My friend once told me,
The beauty is in embracing theirs (flaws), and the reality is in accepting yours
Most often, we want to be the best version of ourselves for the ones we love. We hold ourselves and our partner on a pedestal. While wanting to be better is great, accepting who you are today and finding the comfort in your relationship to be and just let them be, is equally important. Your inability to express your fears, flaws and vulnerabilities is your direct inability to accept your partners’. The kinder you are to yourself, the kinder you are able to be with your partner.
Attachment is a fear response
When we love, we love the person, and more so the idea of a certain life with the person. The initial pristine feelings toward your partner are slowly tainted by expectations, often driven by our own insecurities that seek reassurance at every stage of our connection. The fear causes us to cling, to hold on, to control…
You can only lose what you cling to
Observe when we are making this transition from love of the person, to love of the outcomes. You will know when you are able to express your love only when your expectation is met. This conditionality thwarts the natural blossoming of the relationship. The beauty of the relationship is when you are able to love through disappointments- yours and theirs. It takes a very strong kind of love to do so.
Love is Strong and Fragile
But it is mostly what you want it to be. You can make space for authentic expression that allows your partner to understand the cause of your fears and vulnerabilities, and help them be a part of your healing. Or you can choose to distance them from it, and let their lack of sensitivity pile up till you can no longer bridge the gap. Remember to keep assumptions at bay, have the strength to respectfully ask for clarifications when a situation arises that triggers your fear response. For assumptions arise from previous conditioning, and it is about time we break those.
The strongest love is the love that can demonstrate its fragility
— Paulo Coelho
I hope you find, and keep yours!
Previously published on “Hello, Love”, a Medium publication.
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