In the comparison game, it’s been hard not to think that we’re doing something wrong since we’re in therapy so early on in our relationship. But last night I realized that the truth of it is- we are doing it right for us. We realized we had communication issues when we shacked up and instead of throwing up our hands and quitting on each other, we dug deeper into ourselves to try to be a better partner for the other. We didn’t have years of hurt and miscommunication between us yet and I think that helps because we’re just working on ourselves, not trying to untangle years of resentment. Instead of waiting for things to be awful, we cut it off at the pass.
I’m the pro-therapy one in our match. Mr. Darcy goes for me and for us and in the process has realized he can get a lot out of it for himself. One of things I love about him is his willingness to try, even when it is uncomfortable for him. We’ve been seeing our counselor for 9 months now and we both can see that the other has made changes. Do we still fight? Yes. And we will always fight because fighting is natural when two people are in a relationship. Would we like to never fight? Mr. Darcy probably would. I would feel weird if we didn’t. But we both have different triggers around fighting from our childhoods. What’s important is how we fight and how we move through it to a better place. Topics that once fueled tears and raised voices now can be discussed with more of a level head. We’re not rushing to protect ourselves with statements like “maybe we should just break up” when one of us feels hurt or scared. We’re learning to say what we want and what we need which is hard for both of us but necessary for the health of our relationship and our personal happiness. We’re practicing sitting with the feelings even when we wish we could fix them and make everything better.
I realize a lot of people don’t talk about this kind of stuff publicly but I am because I’ve found when I have confided in someone about our struggles they more often than not can relate. And maybe in the relating we can all feel less alone and less like we’re doing it “wrong”. Trying to make a life with someone you love is never going to look like a Hollywood movie. It’s messy and challenging. It takes work and diligence and compromise. And it will, in the littlest of moments, take my breath away with its beauty.