Anthony Rockliffe discusses the expectations we place on relationships, and whether this is fair to our partners.....
How many good relationships have gone the way of the dodo because someone’s expectations were not met?
How fair is that? Is it right to have expectations of others, especially significant others? I say no. Most of the arguments I hear about from married friends usually centre on an expectation that wasn’t met.
It is okay to have desires, but when those desires become expectations we are heading for trouble
Should you expect the toilet seat to be put back down? Or the toothpaste cap to be replaced? Should you expect a sms or a bunch of flowers? You may, but at your own peril.
We all live in different worlds, my reality is different from yours, and your significant other’s is different from yours; when you have a desire, you simply wish their reality was more like yours, when that becomes an expectation then you demand that their reality becomes more like yours. And that is purely selfish.
Now we find ourselves right back at the beginning again. If you are in a relationship where your realities are so different and your expectations are not being met, then how did you get there?
Even if it was ok to have expectations, you have to either go into a relationship super fast or with your eyes closed in order to wake up one day and think “What have I managed to get myself into?” The quickest route to relationship bliss is the longest one.
By keeping it at the level of growing friendship you can get to honestly experience the other person and the way they deal with reality, and if you don’t like it then at least you have a friend. Of course the easiest way would be to keep your desires as “would be nice” not “have to have” and you will be free to enjoy all the good of the relationship and weather the bad a lot easier.