Many of us will agree that all too often, romantic love is marred by the reality that one of the partners loves more intensely than the other does. This disparity between the emotional content of deep love on the part of one and a kind of “medium quality” love on the part of the other, often results eventually in the relationship falling apart, which is of course very hard on the partner who is fully commited, emotionally and psychologically.
Years ago I read a small booklet written by a client who spent a couple weeks relaxing at my Spa in the U.K. She told me that she had used the technique outlined in her booklet to help a number of different people who found themselves in this invidious position in life.
The exercise she suggested was very simple, and in a way used the basic principles of hypnotic suggestion.
What she advised the couple to do was this. Spend some time together on a quiet day where they will not be disturbed. The partner who desires a stronger love commitment from the other, undertakes to bring up the subject of feeling love. Feelings of love are often quite deeply buried and take some time to bring up to the light. Love for anything, really, can be used to start this exercise off.
For example, the partner who is not fully committed emotionally probably has had examples in their life of being in a love state with something or someone. Maybe a beloved pet, a dog or cat, or a parrot! Or perhaps their first car! Or they may deeply love their mother, or be able to remember when their first child was born, how it felt to hold the child just after birth.
The thing is, while they are remembering an example of being in a state of love toward someone or something, they are pulling up the old feelings they always FEEL when they think about that object or person. Feelings of love can last for a few seconds or, if stories are being swapped about feelings of affection for things, the feelings of remembered love can rise and fall, come and go, as the stories go on.
If the more passionately loving partner can prolong the business of having their Other remember a loving situation and talk about that old relationship for a few minutes, it is important that they have their hand touching their partner’s hand or arm or shoulder, some part of their body that is easy to access and does not cause any defensiveness. The longer the memories of that special, loving relationship can be held, the more deeply this simple touching exercise can leave its mark.
For one thing, if we talk about issues in our lives that we feel deeply about, issues important to the Other, we are unconsciously cementing our commitment to that person. It’s a good way to get someone to fall in love with you initially…get them to talk about things deeply important to them with you every time you are on a date. Their commitment will naturally fall toward you, as you become the vessel which holds these precious memories of theirs.
In addition, if your hand is touching them as they FEEL the old feelings toward their beautiful cadillac convertible with extra big fins, or their wonderful cat that used to catch crabs right out of the ocean shore, or their dear mother who was always there for them no matter how hard her life was, they unconsciously build a connection between you and this old love.
There is another benefit to this simple exercise….trust is built, higher and stronger, as you share these moments while touching in a gentle, caring way, and since lack of trust, histories of betrayal far in the past, are probably coming between the two of you to begin with, the business of building stronger trust is vital. As FEELINGS of love are experienced and remembered in a sharing, trusting moment, the walls of doubt and self-protection crumble unnoticed.
The longer the memories of love are experienced, the more powerful this exercise is.
Sometimes it can be surprising to the partner who thought they loved so much more than the other; they may well find that having their beloved go so far into the deep emotions of past connections and reveal those feelings, makes them uncomfortable…they, too, perhaps need to be reminded that it’s okay to feel these things so deeply and maybe they, too, can take a turn at being heard in this way.
It takes quality time to build and keep a good marriage or relationship; and there is no use trying to keep strong emotions outside the door, if a lasting and loving connection is what you aim for. It takes time and it takes energy. Paying attention. Listening fully and completely.
In other words: Loving.