How to survive growing pains in relationships
Relationships teach you how to love unconditionally. This means loving the soul underneath all the facades, masks and roles someone carries through life. It means loving them even when those things begin to change.
As humans, our purpose in life is to remove those masks to get to our true soul’s expression. Our only mission is to de-condition and remember why we chose to come into this life. But as those masks come off and the doubts and ego disintegrate, it is not a pretty process. Any kind of birth is a brutal, dramatic, turbulent, ugly process. You have to face all of that, and learn to love it, in order to truly understand what love is. To understand unconditional love, you need to love someone else who is going through that process.
So how do you do that?
First things first: communicate. Specifically, non-violent, non-blaming communication. Ask questions, and REALLY listen to the answers. Pay attention to the tone of their voice, their body language, their energy. Keep asking until you (& sometimes they) truly understand where the fuck they’re coming from. What is going on in their minds. Try to wrap your head around what they’re going through, why they’re going through it, and where they’re trying to get to.
Second: do the self-work to figure out why this change is triggering you. Is it their specific actions that are crossing a boundary? Is it something that actually needs to shift within the relationship, that you need to work on together? Does it have literally nothing to do with them and is all your own shit? Whatever answer you uncover - share it with your partner. It may be that triggering you is what they need to uncover the root of their wound - or that being triggered is what you need to uncover the roots of your wounds. Communication is always the answer when it comes to these things.
Third: work together. You do not live in a bubble, especially if you’re literally living with someone else. The self-work you do impacts them, the same as the self-work they’re doing impacts you. So work together. Share what you need to feel supported, seen and understood. Most importantly - figure out how you can give yourself those things. Because when it comes down to it, you’re really pushing each other to love yourselves unconditionally so that you can love everyone unconditionally. We need to realize we are all whole humans on our own, and that we don’t need another to complete us. Our partners, lovers, and friends are there to enrich our lives and help us grow. You’re not on this journey alone, but you alone are the only one who can do the inner work for yourself to return to your true nature.
Finally, remember: As they shift, you will too (and vice versa). Each set of growing pains will push the other to step more authentically into themselves. The only way to do it together it is to give each other both the space and the support you each need to heal. Give your partner, and yourself, the love, understanding and compassion that you would like to receive. Then surrender, because this process is a fucking rollercoaster, and it’s taking you for a ride whether you like it or not.