Why can’t you get it the first time?” It is a question Oprah shared being asked in a video featured on The Huffington Post. It is a question I asked myself in a past relationship that I knew was all wrong despite my desperate attempts to make it right. It is a strange phenomenon how as women we often try to justify the behaviors of the people we care about. We want it to work so we tell ourselves that the actions of the person we are dating or perhaps we’re even married to aren’t a true representation of who they are. The lies, the flakiness, or whatever it was, was never enough to get you to leave. At least not the first time. And that’s where we run into all the trouble. Their actions scream “I’m not worthy of your heart” and still we give it to them somehow blind-sighted by the fact that they end up breaking it. But is one heartbreak ever really enough? Most often, we give it to them again and a cycle continues.
What is it about us that causes us to try so hard to see things for the way we want to see them as opposed to seeing them exactly for what they are? This is something that happens in so many of our relationships whether it is a love interest or simply a loved one. As I get older I have l come to see the disservice I do myself in trying to perceive the people in my life for anything other than who they are — who they show me they are. It is not my job to tell someone who they aren’t. “I’m flaky.” “No you’re not.” Seriously, they just said they are flaky, believe them. “I’m not ready to settle down.”“Oh he’s just saying that.” They just told you they aren’t ready for something serious. Believe them. As Oprah (and Maya Angelou) notes, “They know themselves much better than you do.” While the notion of believing them can be particularly helpful when it comes to weeding out the keepers when it comes to dating, I believe it can also help make for a more harmonious home environment — a lesson in accepting the person you are with for who they are maybe?
I first read these words as a teenage girl but it wasn’t until I became a woman that I truly understood them. It is a lesson that had I got a long time ago, I could have muddled through my adolescence and young adult years with a lot less disappointment and heartache. It is a lesson that reminds me of the importance of not just seeing people for who they are but also to be transparent so that I allow people to see me for who I am. For more information including a video highlighting some of Oprah’s thoughts on this visit The Huffington Post.
I would love to read your thoughts on this. Why do we struggle with seeing people for who they are as opposed to whom we want them to be?
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