Is it possible to have a meaningful intimate relationship with someone if you do not know how to relate to yourself? Personally I don’t think it is. I love these words of wisdom from an author that I unfortunately do not know the name of – I found the quote in an old notebook of mine.
“Most people in our society share a peculiar belief: We imagine that we should be able to establish a rich and satisfying relationship with someone we love even if we have never learned to relate to ourselves in a rich, satisfying way. We imagine that a successful relationship largely depends on finding the right person and doing the right things. We often don’t see that how we relate to another is an expression of how we relate to ourselves, that our outer relationships are but an extension of our inner life, that we can only be as open and present with another as we are with ourselves.
Never before have intimate relationships called on us to face ourselves and each other with so much honesty and awareness. Maintaining an alive connection with an intimate partner today challenges us to free ourselves from old habits and blind spots, and to develop the full range of our powers, sensitivities, and depths as human beings. In former times, if people wanted to explore the deeper mysteries of life, they would often enter the seclusion of a monastery or hermitage. For many of us today, however, intimate relationships have become the new wilderness that brings us face to face with all our gods and demons.”