Relationships and How our expectations kill our most important relationships
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Chapter 1 of 6
As young children we were taught how relationships work by our parents, guardians as well as our siblings. During the course of learning we were also encouraged what relationships are? As the dynamics of relationships began to develop with our most important people in our lives as children we mold certain expectations with the closest people in our lives ie to be protected, fed, clothed, educated etc. We are also taught manners and expectation of manners goes hand in hand.
Often time we grow up molding the ideology in our every day lives and have the same expectations of our lovers, family, friends and sometimes our co-workers and bosses. But we seem to forget that sometimes we do not come from the same generation or the same morals as people we involve our selves with. This becomes escalated inner conflict and outer conflicts which can destroy relationships.
Surely, we all have expectations- we would not be human without them. As we wake up we want the sun to shine and we want our home to be intact and we want the support of our family, friends and lovers, however, we can not always have that because we are not the center of the universe but the opposite-the universe should be center for us.
In Indian cultures, we are very high context culture whereas; we steer away from conflicts of all kinds, and often seek wisdom through our elders or our own higher power. The value of family honor and respect is the grassroots of our culture. Sorry, or compensation does not work in our culture, those to us are words. Our actions speak louder than our words on a daily basis. Hence we have expectations of our selves and those to our family and friends that all would be respected, honored and cared for even if they harm us through words as well as actions. We believe that for every pain that is inflicted on us by another human we will be granted sanctions through the high power by not retaliating or having a tit-for –tat actions. That in silence we will have resolute and time it self will heal our wounds as well as giving wisdom to the other as to why things happen the way they do. This is why some people consider us quite people.
Contrary to the eastern culture -western culture which is a low context culture is more verbal, and respect and honor are earned not a part of the grassroots. Sometimes when we withhold expressing our selves in a heat of anger we often escalate conflict more than we should or need to.
I am not saying either culture is correct the topic here is expectations, so how does this expectation create conflicts in our lives? When we meet a person we are independent in thought, body, mind and soul and accept the person for who they are paying no mind or attention to their idio- sycriscities, because it’s so new, fresh and good. As our relationship transits phase one of relationship conflict begins. The more time we spend with one or more people the more expectations we have and the more sacrifices we make expecting the same in return. This paradigm shift began a whole new series of phases which can lead to destroying the relationship.
Next articles I will shift the focus into phase two of the conflict within relationships and how expectations can destroy the innocence of faith which is the basis of all relationships.
Until then, I hope that this finds you motivated and looking forward to a wonderful December even Mars takes the best of us.
You may choose to listen to the show on Blog talk by clicking below.. the first show had some kinks due to virus and Blog talk technical issues but we got by …Thank you Janet and Mike
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Chapter 2 of 6
In the last blog we spoke of expectations. As you are aware I spoke a lot of culture. But I want to break down culture and the chronology of expectation in the simplest forms. So, that a better understanding in your life is much simpler as well as how you conjugate situations.
Both my sister and I have studied culture to its extreme since we are both a part of a culture that has certain expectations of us and how we could change the perception of culture. There have been many books written about cultures some which are scholarly and some that are fictional base. I do not trust any that is no researched and the basis or premises are on fictional base. One of the most sought out book in areas of culture is written by Kevin Avruch, whose books were a basis of studies conducted by the United States Institute of Peace Press. Avruch begins his research on verities of culture and the approaches of culture and found that “culture is as dynamic as derivative conception of individual experiences.”(Avruch 2000: x). Thus culture is really a plagiaristic individual experiences, something that is learned, created by individuals themselves or passed on to them by social context or ancestry. In addition culture is seen as some thing as unstable or homogenous than as projected by societies. Therefore culture is homogeneous (behavioral), it’s a thing (with independent human actors), it is consistently distributed through the members of the group (effectiveness of behavioral uniformity), it is a synonymous with group identity ( ie Indian, American. Name of the culture or originality), it is a custom (what you see is what you get) and most of all culture is timeless (its about here and now). We all belong to a culture and subcultures which create a proactive role to create expectations. For example I am a Hindu living in America with Hindu parents. Thus I have a culture that is Hindu and a sub-culture that is Western and another sub-culture that is Brahmin. Thus my primary culture which is Hinduism and Brahmin will proceed/ encourage expectation than those of subcultures. Having that let’s break down the expectations as Hindus would relate to.
Boys and girls in the Hindu environment are mentally structured to place expectations as follows in this order:
- Expectation from God
- Expectation from our Parents
- Expectation from our culture
- Expectation from our lover/husband/boyfriend/girlfriend/companion
- Expectation from society.
One of the most important aspects of the Hindu culture is its uniformity of religion. We do not go to our temple once every Sunday and feel that God will forgive us. Instead our religion expects us to worship our deities on a daily basis, and have conformity in our lives in return our deities expects us to be honest, compassionate, humble, educate our selves, respect others, nurture, and learn from our experiences. Whether someone has been bad or mean to us we must learn to forgive and never take revenge as our refuge. Our deities also expect us to sacrifice our selves to our for our children as well as our parents, family virtue and customs are the grass roots of our culture, thus allowing us to be consistent and choose humility over matter. We are also taught that we can not idealize people in our lives except for our parents. We can not place any humans in front of our deities and faith and if we do then God always teaches us lessons and makes us re-learn faith and consistency. Though our deities are not punishing deities but they are learning and relearning deities.
In every day learning experience we shall never be involved in a co-dependent relationship hence this means idealizing another person and putting them in front of God. Co-dependency and obsession is a form of self disrespect and as God respects you, how can you expect him to perform miracles or heal you when you are placing someone else in front of him? A healing or miracles never occur in an obsessive, manipulative or destructive relationship. Healing always occurs when you meet the expectation of God by transforming your self into a humble and self caring individual who has faith that God will help through mourning or laughter.
Therefore, I want you to consider the notion every time you call a reader to ask your self the questions: are you obsessed? Are you placing the other person in front of God? Is your every movement based upon the other person’s actions? Have you stopped eating and resting? Have you stop enjoying life? If any of these are true than you are in a idealistic mode, hence it will only delay the progress of healing a relationship rather than obsessing. Self respect is a urgency to every God whether it is Jesus, Mohammad, Ala, Buddha, Ganesh or any other spiritual inclination which you practice. Please understand the difference between nature and nurture you must have both to complete your self and your relationship.
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I personally want to thank Janet Moon Production for helping me make this show happen… Many thanks
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Chapter 3 of 6
Though I have written expectations out of order there is a reason so that everything synchronizes as it should. In the past blog I have discussed how expectations can destroy relationships and how they are intertwined with our own self autonomy. I have also followed the patterns as expected from the Hindu culture and the 5 expectation and how we have to chronologically respect them. Once again they are:
- Expectations from God
- Expectations from our parents
- Expectations from our Culture
- Expectations from our lover/husband/boyfriend/girlfriend and or companion
- Expectations of Society
The guidelines of expectations of God was already recovered in my second blog expectation of culture was discussed in third, now we come to a very sensitive and more subtle expectation which of our parents.
This expectation can have the most negative impact in our lives or for the positive, either way they are the grassroots for our own journey through life. If any one has been in a dysfunction situation where any negative conjugation has occurred. Usually it spills into our own children (if we have any) or even our own friends and relationships creating a flow of insecurities, co-dependency and abandonment issues. Often these issues can suffocate any relationship even those that have absolutely no love in common.
Our parents are our teachers from the time we are born to the time that we die we continue to learn and reminded of our culture, behaviors and values that have been instilled in us and how we must practice them by our parents. I will not go too deep into negatives as far as expectations are concerned, since it can be quite a controversial and touchy subject which should be discussed within the family or therapy if needed. I will only dive into the surface of expectations from our parents.
As we grow from child hood to adolescence we expect our parents to protect us from what most children call “the boogey man” or “the bad guy” the typically depending upon how we are raised a certain values are instilled as we grow up. Girls are forced to play with things that are feminine such as Barbie dolls and pebbles etc and boys are forced to play sports and be involved in studies. In the Indian Culture especially boys are turned into men at a very early age. And girls are women as early as 10.
Most Indian parents are following their ancestry of up brining through their own experiences whereas boys are men and they must support and be intelligent and macho, and girls they are dainty and they don’t need to be smart only thing they need to do is smart enough to marry and bare children since girls will soon be women and they must bare children if they don’t it would be considered a taboo. As both genders transcend the expectations become overwhelming.
In America or lets broaden the horizon by rewording in the “western culture” most parents spend a lot of time up brining up a child (please know I said most parents) they make sure their children are fed that no matter what gender they both go to school they are learned mannered and labeled as “kids” even after they are grown up. However, often that label while in dispute can often be “he/she is just a child” this label remains until 10-15 then it transforms to “he is a teenager what do you expect” this label continues from 15 to 20. And from there it is there is nothing I can do “he is on his own” from the age of 20 through how ever old one is.
However, in India boys and girls are NOT considered boys and girls they are considered as possessions of “my daughter” or “my son” no age is taken into consideration. The expectation that these boys and girls have are the same as those in the western culture, which is to be loved, nurtured and to be happy. But often that innocence is broken girls are often married into a family as early as 10 and often even give birth as early as 12 or 13 and boys are also married off as early as 14 to 15 and are fathers by the time they are 17 to 18. There is no innocence left behind. Though that the marriage issues have changed dramatically that a girl has to 18 before marriage these things continue in the Indian Society.
Having said that what are we to conclude do we differ and go back to the concept of culture? Or do we accept situation as they are accept the fact that children have more power over us than they did when we were growing up. And we often ask ourselves why? There are many simple solutions and this where we cross the boundaries between expectations and raising a child properly. If we were to the equation of Indian children and Western children and just look at children and parents, we all know that there is a form of discipline some are disciplined with love but most often it is negative. I am sure you all remember those belts and the smacking, the scoldings and most of all being grounded. Do you ever wonder why we do not do that in this day in age to our children? By having the extremities of discipline were we better people in society did it really make a difference or is that we give our children more freedom because we had none? There is no control over children now these days more and more children kill each other because there the love is missing, the boundaries are gone and most of all there is no discipline because we are afraid to be to harsh. So can we say that it was missing we had so much of it when we were growing up that we do not want to do the same our children but to remind them of how we were treated?
And furthermore what are our expectations from parents? Well I believe it all depends, if you are over 30 on there are none because I truly believe the only thing we expect now is respect all the other things are gone through nostalgia and we carry with us the pain and happiness which we take into our own children. And what are the expectations of a child under 30, I can’t help but to laugh to say EVERYTHING: Love, money, freedom without boundaries and expectation not that expectation of them to you but visa versa. Who do we blame for this chaos? I can sincerely say NO one. Only because it is not our fault that our parents instilled into us the discipline without love that we carry to make sure our children have what we did not. And it is not our parent’s fault that it carried through generations through generation.
So as parents and as children the only expectation we should have is emancipation of practice of religion and having faith that everything has its own purpose and only we change and break the pattern of dysfunctionality not through violence or regression but through peacemaking process and affection.
I can only hope that this blog allows you to look at life in a different prospective and we (if you are a parent) must stop blaming your self and encourage every positive endeavor of your child. And as children I hope you understand different generations or not parents must be respected, honored and loved just like they love you but they just don’t show it like you do.
I anticipate this finds you in good health and prosperity and the next subject will be on expectations of relationships. This will be a very interesting topic.
My God always bring you peace and serenity and may you find the answers in the Devine.
Thanks to Janet Moon production I was able to air this live from Tampa Bay Florida, if you wish to listen to the live show you may click on the player below
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Chapter 4 of 6
On my last blog as well as last show which aired on blog talk radio on December 11, 2009, I revisited the previous topics of expectations of culture, expectations of God and spoke in-depth about expectations of parents.
This weeks topic expectation of our partner/lover/companion or of husband or wife, which may brings forth many emotional issues which can be devastating for many of us. Therefore I am going to try to break it down into categories.
Expectations as we all know are also gender related and submerged into every relationship through experiences and learning through culture, social and family lives. For example if a boy is raised in a society where narcissistic and control personality is a norm, then these will be practiced through out his life. This will be even more prominent in his relationship where he may show behaviors that are controlling and authoritative.
On the other hand it can be the very opposite; and it all depends upon how it his childhood affected him emotionally. If a boy witnessed his mother being beaten by his father then he would choose to do the same or the opposite depending upon the conclusion of the relationship with his mother or the closeness he has to his father. If he was in a family where there was not that much love shown or expressed he may choose co-dependent relationship. Or if he was in a home where there boundaries and love he may not understand that different people express differently.
Iif a girl is raised in her family with abusive parents she may be timid through out all of her relationships with the opposite sex or she may be very cold or ruthless depending upon how she can adapt to her social environments. Girls and boys are raised on systematic cognation where there are a certain roles which boys and girls must adapt to. Girls are raised to be caretakers, emotional, beautiful, smart and must carry her self in a lady like manners (ie cross her legs, ware high heels, must be submissive) but most of all be mothers. Whereas boys are raised to be in an image of macho-ness, materialistically stable, educated, emotionally detached. Boys are opted by the social prospective to be successfully, financially successful and be great husbands and wonderful fathers.
McKay in his book “When Anger Hurts: Quieting the Storm Within”, states many people go through struggles of independency of thought and behavior pattern even as they get older. McKay states, “Some children live most of their lives in the shadow of intrusive or abusive parents. And even when the child thinks she’s escaped by marrying and having her own family the intrusiveness continues.”(1999, pg.3). These expectations and behavior patterns can be very crucial aspect to healthy relationship. Many people who have been victimized emotionally, physically or even spiritually will have a difficult time in a healthy relationship until they learn to place boundaries within themselves and expect less of their partner.
Often times in these conditions or the circumstances we have higher expectations of our partners such as expecting them to be there for us all of the time, call us most of the time and when they do not comply or fulfill our expectations it is an automatic trigger of insecurities and creates sabotage in our own most personal important relationships.
In my years of experience of being a psychic I have listen to many relationships falling apart because of expectations and there are many reasons why but summing up some of the most important aspects of dysfunctional relationship issues have been revolving around giving too much or not giving enough.
A functional healthy relationship takes work sometimes more worth than we anticipated. More so than ever it takes money, time and emotions and 70% of relationships break up because of finances. Men and women have been both have a made the mistake of buying their partners. Jody Hayes in her book “Smart Love” uses her experiences to identify expectation and co-dependency as all in the same. Hayes states, “I learned that my extreme “generosity” was not always motivated by noble intentions. Often, I gave to others to gain their approval and acceptance and to boost my self-esteem. I learned that part of my need for privacy and for a sense of self-containment was generated by my poor self image. I just did not want anyone to become aware of my typical human flaws. I learned how my unwillingness to let anyone see me as I am had locked out the possibility of genuine intimacy. No one can love someone he or she does not know and no one knew me. I had made sure of that”(1989, xxii). In my own experiences I have seen many women buy their men and visa versa. What I mean by this is if the woman does not have money she will go out of her way to clean, cook and be the motherly type and if there is money to be spend they will max out their credit cards and their savings to buy anything their partner wants, and men do the exact same thing. But what ends up happening is that there is an expectation of receiving the same in return and often times the partner takes an advantage or they do not see the energy their partner has put into pleasing their every senses. Thus causing the partner who has given too much to feel used or even feel as though they are not appreciated.
This is not because the partner does not appreciate the things that a person does for them rather often times they feel that it is done as a kind jester only that it is what love is all about giving and this is how the partner shows his or her love. Therefore, everything in life including giving must have boundaries and everything in life must have discipline.
Surely culture and family does mold the way we relate to our partners a perfect example of this is could be a man should always pay when he take a women out. The macho image created by many societies is not wrong but it can be taken rather out of context. The society is changing there is nothing wrong with going Dutch or if a women ask a man out there is nothing wrong with a women paying. If women want have an equal role in society they should also practice this. Yes, I am a liberal feminist and believe that equality should not be picked and chosen rather it should be consistent as a straight line. However in the same instance a man should not be expected to pay all the time nor the women. This is where the expectation of cultural and social expectations lays hands in expectations of the individual. Whereas women would say “I can’t believe that he split the bill” or “I can not believe he actually made me pay” or “I can’t believe she did not even say thank you for dinner” even “damn I spent $100.00 on her and I never saw her again.” These are all forms of expectations. These are all signs of negative social expectations.
Someone once said to me if God asked a Man I will give you love but you have to give up your car, home and everything you own materialistically, the man would say “hell no.” But if the same question was given to women she would give up even her shoes to have the love she wants. Yes this is the 21st century and times have changed but have they really? I say not every woman wants a prince charming to sweep her off her feet to give her the security she needs and every man wants Cinderella who can give him the love he needs and in return allows him to be the man he wants or needs to be. I remember even one time one of my old boyfriends said to me , “you make me want to be a better man” this was not because I had expectations of him nor was it because I gave because that relationship was the most innocent relationship where money was not of a value it was time, space, respect and honor.
I am not suggesting that men and women should have expectations in regards to spending money on each other or even spending money for each other but giving expensive gifts in the 1st to 6 months of a relationship is nice but often time it can be taken for granted that either that person has money and it is ok to take an advantage or ask for it or that without even knowing it the person is proposing wrong signals of a deeper commitment which could cause the person receiving the gift either run away or expecting the same all of the time even when money becomes difficult to come by during hard times. So if you do not want to give the wrong signals to your significant other lower the expectation so that if the person does not give back exactly what you gave to them you won’t be disappointed unless you have money to blow and if that is the case than chances are you are not reading this and don’t care to because you believe buying people is the only way to have love in your life.
Thanks to Janet Moon Productions I was able to pass this message to many people on Blog Talk Radio (See below for direct link to the show). Thank you Spider Mike and Cheryl for making this show fun even if we had a serious topic. Listen and you shall hear for your self how much people vary on their topic of expectations..
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Chapter 4 of 6
Expectations, has many parts however, in a love relationship or even a companionship expectations are very crucial part of love as well as disorder.
I have discussed earlier that finances, time and emotions are all very critical part of a love. I have already discussed how finances lead relationships to be misinterpreted, break up or even create the partners to feel unappreciated or used.
However, time is just as crucial to a relationship and it is also gender driven. For example though men and women, boys and girls have been socially separated in substance to time, it can be assumed on psychological level men and women have the same needs. Thus, creating vast amount of conflicting energy, whether to move forwards or slow down the relationship.
Depending upon how both genders are raised, the effects will ripple through their relationships with their mates and friends. If a child is raised in an environment where the parents have not spent enough time with their children they will also use this behavior as a norm in their relationship. Spending less time with the one they love. There is nothing wrong with that but it may be seen as a selfish behavior pattern to their partners if other partner wants to spend some time with them.
In the same respect if a child is lacking the “togetherness” in their family environment, he or she may revert to spending a lot of time with their mates even in the beginning of the relationship and may want more than their mates can provide in areas of time. This can become very toxic if the other person is not willing to give the same or they does feel the same.
The need of time is crucial in many areas of a relationship for example if a boy is raised where he sees that his father spends more time with his friends he may revert to do the same in his relationship where he may place the women as secondary. Or if woman has lacked attention from her father she may revert to want to spend more time with her significant other to replace the attention which was not given by her father or fatherly figure.
In a psychological terms time can often refer to as Proximity. In Julia T Woods, book, “Gender Lives”, she states, “proxemics refer to space and our use of it. Space is primary means through which cultures express values and shape the patterns of interaction. And different cultures value different norms” (2001, pg135.). For example in the Western culture depending upon the family values set forth a traditional way of life may be that man will ask a women out on a date and depending upon how much interaction was developed within that first date will determine their next visit. One must also consider motives: if he is wanting a relationship he many not focus upon a sexual interaction on the first date. Rather give the woman respect by being a little reserve on the first date.
In the same instance however, a women may be the aggressor and may use these sexual tendencies because she may feel that if she lets down her guard to a man she is attracted to than perhaps he might want to call her or see her again. Often times theses types of interactions may cause some misinterpreted feelings. If the man wants a relationship and the women decide to have a sexual liaison on the first date (which is quite common now these days but can be very dangerous) the chances are no matter how good the interaction is he may not view her same and this goes both ways.
If a man becomes the aggressor in first date sexual liaison, a woman may feel that a man is coming on too strong she may push him aside thinking that, the man only wants her for physical interaction. Therefore balance is an absolute necessity. Expecting to see someone the next day after the initial date depends highly upon the interaction of the first date, and it also depends upon what a man or a woman would view as a relationship. This leads right back to his/her interaction with family routes and cultural normative.
For example in the Hindu culture it is very rare for men and women to PSF (public show of affection) it is also vary rare for men and women to sleep together on the first night. Additionally, it is also vary rare that men and women would see each other immediately after the first date and even more rare if the man calls the next day. Hindu cultures believe that the process of the date must be digested and to have a relationship is a step by step process with balance and space. This means we do not smoother each other rather we make a slow steady transition.
When starting a new relationship, quite often men/women treat it like marriage that one must spend all their spare time with that person in fear that they may loose them. This is a very normal complex thinking process. But often when women get too close too soon with a man it becomes a sign to run. In the book by Doug Robinson, “No Less a Man”, Robinson states that when a women gets too close to man and those feelings become so intense almost too close almost as close as his feelings for his own mother, “It is creepy, frightening, anxiety producing just in thinking of it-and the first impulse is to run from any idea of it” (1994, p.215). This is when a man needs to step back This does not mean that the women came on too strong or does it mean that a women was a failure but a man need to differentiate that you as a women are not their mothers rather a companion to them.
Within a day or two or week or to and sometime even a month or two he can come to terms with his feelings that either the relationship will continue where it left off or it may never go in the direction because they can not separate between someone who wants to control him or he wants to be the supporter. This does not mean he had a SICK relationship with his mother it just means that the motherly role in a boy’s life really marks how he relates to relationships, and this can only be analyzed or understood by his behavior in the first time both of you had alone time together.
In the same notion a woman may want to see her date the next day again or at least hear from their date that night because she may believe that there is mutual respect and emotional bonding. This does not mean that she is being leachy it is general characteristic and it is normal in Carol C Gould book, “Gender: Key Concepts in Critical Theory”, Gould states, “because she feels the necessary bond that ties her man regardless of reciprocity, and because she is often very pleased with her role as the Other”(1997, pg9). The have a need to hold on to it and nurture it through communication and touch.
Men and women have changed their roles as the transitions in life became more settled as far as equality is concerned and there has been a vast amount of research done. About the interaction between two people during courtship in a sense that a man may reverse the role with a women if he does not feel sufficient in society and has a need for appreciation. A man who is lacking their economical or social patriarchal stanza in society may become the rescuer type. Whereas he may be the one would want a phone call the next night or special attention the next day etc. This does not make him a less of a man, it just means that he is looking for the strength and acceptance that he is liked or adored. Some women may call this kind of man aggressive, possessive or needy. And some women may like the attention; however in a brand new relationship it may be dangerous, if the feelings are not mutual or identical.
In new relationship and I am being very particular about new (1st 6months) it is crucial that time is balanced. When relationship becomes an obligation that is when red flags develop. When a partner imposes you to spend your entire spare and moments of your time with them through means of manipulation or guilt trips, these are warning flags that the relationship will soon become toxic very quickly. Where is no “my time” or “your time” there is only “we time” thus forcing us to mold into other persons expectations and needs and placing ours secondary. And our obligations are no longer of a importance and making the other person as a pedestal in our lives instead of a balanced situation therefore instead of you being in a relationship the relationship becomes you. Which may also cause our priorities become unbalanced pushing away our families and friends making our mates a number one priority in our live, and slowly those important relationships which made us who we are diminish through time.
Through these dysfunctional activities and behaviors especially if the relationship does not work, the important people in our lives have already left because we have already pushed them away. What gets left is family and even that interaction has diminished because we did not create balance in our lives enough so that family members feel equally important as our mates.
Additionally if the relationship can go by in the first few stages of balanced time and moves one step higher to marriage that balance must be consistent especially when children are involved where there is “my time” there is “your time”,” we time”, “our time”, “family time” and “friends time”.
But if a relationship takes over our lives so much that we are submerged into what the other person is thinking, doing, or is going to do and what they will do or not do then we are living through them and we are no longer ourselves and to bring that balance back is a very difficult process . In the mean time we have lost our mind and spirit by idealizing the relationship and we have now became addicted to the other person and spend 24 hours thinking and revolving our lives around the other person and we have lost all self control and personal power, sometimes to get out of this type of obsession takes months sometimes years of therapy, spiritual cleansing and spiritual reconciliation with our sprit.
Whether you are in a long term relationship or just met someone always communicate your needs and always compromise the need for time which are concepts of “my time” “your time”, “we time”, “family time” and “friends time”, without this the relationship can deteriorate very quickly. And often can lead to abuse which can be in a form of, physical, spiritual or emotional because we have spend all of our time giving away our personal power and the weakness of our fear of loosing someone and are afraid to be alone submerging our selves into being exactly what the other person wants us to be rather than who we are or used to be.
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Chapter 4 of 6
Part C~ Emotions
I had discussed earlier chapters that expectation in a love or relationship area has three elements that can also bring toxicants to a relationship. These are financial where there has to balance meaning that just because a person buys an expensive gifts does not mean the other person is appreciative and just because a person does more that does not mean that the other person is going to love more or give more. To eliminate feeling that you have given more or feel used give humbly without expectation. If you buy your partners by showering them in the first few months of a relationship you are giving the wrong impression. It may be advised that there should be balance in every kind of giving.
The second topic was of time. In every relationship time should be also balanced. Forcing another to spend time with you because you are lonely or you wish to fill a void or rush a relationship may cause a relationship to die faster then the efforts put into the relationship. Additionally if spending time with the other person versus spending time with your family or friends are on a contingency or obligatory level this will also be a toxicant to the relationship. If there is no balance of time between family and friends versus partner then there is no respect for your self as well as those who stood by you. So when things are finished or even when things began and you push away your friends they too will disappear and families will feel neglected. Therefore, it is suggested that a relationship should have a slow steady process. So that respect in the relationship is earned when each partner understands that there both of you had a life prior to meeting each other and that life must be maintained, honored and respected.
The third and last topic of expectation is emotions which have many parts and I will break them down so that it is more understandable. Unlike financial and time issues of expectations in a love relationship had a common element that was gender but in emotions, gender is completely separated into the masculine world and feminine world. These issues are driven by patriarchal societies which created the imagery that men should behave one way and women another through media, and relations of others in society. According to Phillip M Backlund, “Readings in Gender Communication”. Blacklund states: “Prior to 1970, femininity and masculinity were viewed as polar opposites and defined as the appropriate sex roles for females and males, respectively. The more females and males exhibited behaviors, appropriate for their biological sex, the greater there social acceptance”(2004, p19). Thus understanding that men are more introverted and women are out spoken. But this can also change depending upon their upbringing and social interaction. Women are driven by emotions and men are often driven by logic and determination. This not to my personal opinion to say that women are dumb and men are smarter but the media and society streams these messages therefore only solution is to act upon them and embed them in our families, culture and values that we hold.
The social aspects of the macho image in the 20th century into the 21st century epics these issues for example movies such as Apocalypse Now, Ben Hur, The Blade Runner, The Godfather and The most famous movie of all time is The Gladiator. But these macho images are not just imbedded in media but it is also in literatures, religious readings as well as theoretical readings. Naturally, it is obvious that men are geared towards certain emotions and behavior patters because of these stanza’s created by images. It is not that men can not be emotional nor will they be in private sectors but the process of thinking which has been embedded is much more distant than those of a women. For example, a woman my feel the need to express their emotions to a man by wanting to “talk” to express her emotions and find a solution or compromise when having a disagreement where as a man may feel in three words, “I am sorry” is enough. Even if a woman is not in the wrong, women have a tendency to be emotional because they are naturally born into the role of mediators which derive from compassion, compromises and being motherly. And when they feel that they are not being heard or when a man feels that his ego is being damaged this is when conflicts escalate. And this escalation leads to heated emotional exchanges.
We must remember, emotions are our impulses which react to situation in many different ways; however some of the most critical issues of emotions and expectations are those of anger. Most of the time when our expectations are not met we can either choose to be angry or disappointed and often drown in self pity. The justification of disappointment usually leads to anger and goes through the steps of ABC, in Conflict resolution theory this is called a circular interactions which lead to conflict. The conflict theory is based upon the concept our Attitude towards a certain situation leads to a certain Behavior which can create or not create Conflict. However often times if a conflict has already reached climax this theory can not be applied thus creating a spiral so large that even communication can not break through and this is where the concept of time is required. But by this time too many words are said that have cut the very surface of a good relationship.
In any relationship it is easy to say emotions justify anger which leads to violence and emotions leads to self pity or nagging or shut down of communication is false. In Matthew McKays book “When Anger hurts” he states, “Anger is basically a matter of choice. It is determined by your thoughts and beliefs far more than your biochemistry or genetic heritage. Venting anger rarely leads to any real relief or any lasting catharsis. It leads instead to more anger, tension and arousal” (1989, pg20). It is also researched that 80% of arguments that created in a relationship are not driven by the issue that is being argued about it just the catalyst which lead to topping of the volcano that was already ready to irrupt.
One time I remember I had a client call me up and ask me if his girlfriend was going to call because they had not spoken in two weeks and he left several messages for her to call him and while I was doing the reading I discovered that he had dishonored her. So I asked “why does she feel that you did not respect her feelings?” He said, “oh my God really?” I was dazed could not understand what he meant, then he continued, “After a long day at work I decided I was going to watch Sunday night foot ball with friends and when I got there I really did not feel like answering so I ignored her because I really did not want to deal with her because I was having a bad day I did not answer the phone the first time. Then the second time I told her she was being a pain in my a.. Because she called two times in 2 hours and when I asked her what she wanted she said she was worried about me because there was a snow storm and she wanted to make sure that I was ok. I told her that she needs to stop being my mother and be my girlfriend and I was old enough to take care of my self. And told her I had to go because boys need to boys and today is Sunday, football day and jokingly I said, “Scram” and I hung up the phone. And When I got home one hour later I called her almost a dozen of times and she never picked up.” So I asked, “What exactly are you looking for? We must be specific. You want to know when she will call or what is happening or?” He said, “I want to know when will she return my call and is she seeing someone else?” Because I knew him so well, I said “Look there is an old saying that when you assume you make a a… out of your self never the other person. Did she give you any indication that she was seeing someone else?” He said, “no but she wont return my calls and I have not heard from her in two weeks and every time I have gone to her job or her home she said she is busy and that we will talk later. That is very weird. You know what I mean?” I stated, “Hmmm. Do you remember what you said to me about the phone call you had with her 2 weeks ago Sunday? And if you had said this to one of your buddies what do you think that they would do?” He replied, “my buddies would not give a rat a.. They know I am kidding and this is how I am” I said, “ok” so now “how long have two been together?” He said, “About 4 months.” I said, “Ok. Who knows you better, your friends or her?” He said, “Of course my friend.” So I said, “Ok if you did the same thing to a perfect stranger what would you think they would do or rather if she did this to you what would you feel?” His voice started to increase the pitch and he replied, “I would say f.. Um! I would never speak to them again.” The moral to this conversation is that men and women do not think the same nor do they express their emotions. Men may consider this conversation with his girlfriend as someone who is being a nag and women may consider this conversation with his girlfriend as he is being a jerk. It is natural process for a woman to worry, to be compassionate, and to communicate and it is also natural for a man to be assertive and be non discrete. Though its may be natural it does not justify our actions towards are partners. Sometimes in a relationship we must really consider the opposite sex as the other. Brining into the relationship that perhaps the other person is not calling to check up but could it be that they naturally care? We must be all very careful with our vocal cues; aggression may not be accepted very well knowingly or un-knowingly.
The vocal cues are also another concept of emotions whether we notice or not two people can say the same thing but mean differently for example: if a person says, “Don’t go there!” and another says, “Don’t go there.” Our pitch, rate, volume, non words, articulation, enunciation and silences are also emotional cue of conflict or understanding. In Judy Pearson, book “Human Communication”, Pearson states, “Vocal cues are important because they are linked in our minds with a speakers psychical characteristics, emotional state, personality characteristics, gender characteristics and even credibility”(2003, p.119). So when your voice pitch is high this can reflect aggression or assertiveness. Also how you speak does matter too, if you are speaking fast it usually can mean that you are detached to the subject and being very objective or nervous or when it is low it could mean you are being very serious or the subject matter is very personal to you. Additionally lack of sound or silence can also be a cue for disruptiveness.
One Christmas, I had a very frantic client, who called and said to me. “I like to find out if my boyfriend is seeing someone.” I said, “Ok.” So as soon as I began to read I said, “Is he traveling?” She said, “Yes! He is going to visit his mother for Christmas and its about 600 miles from where we live and I am so worried because it showed on television that there was a terrible crash on the highway and many were injured.” I said, “OK”, with a little bit of silence I said “have you called him 4 times? And why would he think you are angry at him?” She said, “Yes I called him 4 times and the first two messages I said for him to call me because I am worried. Then the last two messages I was really angry and told him that he was being a a.. Because he won’t return my calls and I hope that he is having a good time messing around and the last phone call I really cried because I really think he is doing something and said goodbye.” I sighed for a moment, “I said now I have to ask you a question which is very important and hypothetical, let’s say he did not have a cell phone which before 1990 there were hardly none and lets say that even if he does, could it be that there are dead zones anywhere where he is traveling?” She said, “OH MY GOD! He is in a rural area I know exactly where he is at. OH MY GOD! We have driven through that area and I lost reception for 100 miles because my phone beeped during the entire time trying to find my carriers signal. OH NO! I made such a jerk of my self. Please Maharani, tell me what to do?” I said, “Hmm as you know you cant change the past what is done is done but always remember it may or may not be forgotten. And what do you think you should do?” She said, “Call back and apologize?” I said, “That is a good place start but your emotions are all over the place. Step back. RELAX and how long does it take for the entire trip when you guys traveled?” She said, “About 9 to 10 hours.” I said, “Ok, if you were in his place what would you think and do? And I want you to really think about it and remember your emotions are lead by your actions and do it with honor and respect and let your ego down.” She thanked me and we got off the phone. Three weeks later she called back and stated after he came back from his trip they talked and worked things out but he warned her that he does not know how to handle her emotions. And all this happened because of silence.
Silence, is also many people is a killer to relationship, but different society may refer to silence as positive and others as a negative. For example when in a conflict occurs in the Western society, if a man keeps quite and does not communicate a woman may think that her man does not care and disrespects her and that he may have someone else within days of the conflict. Whereas, a man may consider it as “time out” or that he needs to give her time to cool off. And if he is really upset he won’t talk to her because he does not want to say something that he will again later regret. Because of these mixed messages often times either one or the other will communicate if the silence goes on for too long eventually they will find another. Not because they want someone it is often considered a rebound venting machine where all there time will be spend talking about the situation and trying to get a clearance from another person that they are justified in doing what they did to make the other person look bad or to have someone on their side. And those relationships often do not work, where they end up going back to their ex or that they find someone new all together because they accomplished what they wanted to.
In the Eastern society, silence is a virtue. When in a heat of anger often time’s men or the women will get cues from their significant other and they will stop talking sometimes for a long period of time until the other person is ready. This often happens in families and even in relationship, they just exist and those emotions brew and often times never forgotten, this goes back to the concept of culture where honor and respect are grass rooted into the family and cultural derivatives. If the relationship is solid enough the conversations after a great deal of silence will often open up through friends or family interaction and the topic will never be brought up again for discussion unless one of them brings it up and it is often swiped under the rug as a character default that we either choose to accept them as they are or step away and never come back. But because relationships are greater value in the Eastern culture the love is always unconditional, but honor and respect is based upon actions rather then words.
Because emotions are the basis of our actions and how we react to also it too has many parts to it. Emotions lead to anger, dishonor, abuse, and dysfunctional tendencies in relationship. Next time you are angry at your partner ask your self if the anger is really because of what has occurred or not or is it from something else all together different that has bottled up for so long ready to explode? It does not have to be partner derived it could be family matters, financial matters or even things that you are personally going through, but quite often we have to dump and often times it is the person we love the most or someone that is ready to listen and when they don’t we become angry and bitterness which leads to chaos in a relationship that can be very hurtful in the long run.
You can listen to the show on Blog Talk Radio with my Special Guest Lee Stillwaters thank you Lee.
Below is a link to the live show on December 30, 2009.
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I wish each and every one of you a very Happy and prosperous New Year.
Chapter 5 of 6
Expectations of Society
The last chapter of expectations points directly to our society which is ground work of our culture. Almost every society is patriarchal in nature. Thus embedding it self into the grassroots of how a person will or will not behave. Our social life is communication driven through male and female interaction. This type of behaviors allows a man to behave one way and women to behave another. According to Sandra Bem’s book The Lenses of Gender, “Social life is so linked to this distinction that the all encompassing division between masculine and feminine would still pervade virtually every aspect of human experience, including not just modes of dress and social roles but ways of expressing emotions and experiencing social desires.” (1993, pg.3). Therefore, naturally the society directs the way we express and controls our every experience.
By all means I am not saying that our society is wrong nor am I saying that society should not maintain some sort of order in their citizens lives, however, it can be said that the more moral perspective which are placed on their citizens of society the more they become a mere number or a place holder within its existence to power. For example how many men come forwards and say that they were raped? Not many why? Because society naturally figures that a man should be able to control him self because he should be strong and therefore he has a power to resist due to the nature of aggressive control. In the same respect how many times have you heard about successful women in the business world? It was not until the 21st Century that women were recognized as being successful. This can only lead to separation and gender polarity.
It is very difficult for a man to be compassionate and emotional in public in fear that he may be called as queer or gay. It is very difficult for women to be too independent because she may be referred to as a bitch. It is ok for a man to be promiscuous but if women is than she is called a slut. There are the issues where society polarizes gender. Which makes it very difficult for a man or a woman to be expressive which forces expectations into a interpersonal relationship because a man is suppose to do that or this and a women is suppose to be that way or this way. So it can be assumed that society has more control over what people do and whether we know it or not we are puppets in society. We can choose not to believe it and justify it as a norm or we can choose to change it, because only then can expectation can be recognized or not.
Could you imagine for one moment that if we were not taught that a man has to be the one that takes care of the women financially and that he has to play the protector, then don’t you think that there would be fewer expectations from women? Or even if a woman was not always hemmed to play the part of a person that worries, being a motherly mediator, then perhaps the society would not consider the women timid and always needs to be rescued? Perhaps then may be even men would view a woman as that of a person who is trying to express her self rather than being a drama queen or a nag?
Every one of our expectations are learned behaviors and they begin with society which imbedded the messages through literature and media through our ancestry. Through the process of survival of the fittest which means that the stronger gene lived. These expectations became even more complex because society went through a transformation. Though the original message of polarizing gender segregation was still present, the social laws made to those expectations, were further deeply rooted. Despite of the fact that the agents of society have changed, agents are the messengers. This is to say that they are the messengers of our evolution and our expectations. According to Anthony Giddens, Introduction to Sociology Fourth Ed., he states that “Agencies of socializations are groups of social contexts in which significant processes of socialization occur. Primary socialization occurs in infancy and childhood and the most intense period of cultural learning” (2000, pg94). This coincides that our ancestry learned their expectations and norms from their family, peer relationships, mass media, and work.
It was not until the 70’s that people in society began to break away from the structure society. During the 70’ our society began a movement of actually releasing the chains of confinement through massive movements of change. These movements marked societal change which was a making of a big history. It included such as things as feminine movement, the gay and the lesbian movements, and freedom of speech and toleration of what citizens of societies should expect through marches of political union. Yes, in the 60’s and 70’s, though some of you may not remember, was a time of breaking away the norms. And it was the catalyst of change. These changes hence grew in to a more rapid independent society but the independent citizen still suffers today.
These social perspectives have given shame of certain behavior. The taboos that are grass rooted are that a father can not be at home and take care of the children, and women can not be the big executives and are often snubbed by society. Though society does accept this behavior, they often do not approve it. I am not saying that everyone does not approve nor accept the concept of a stay at home dad or the concept of a women being a provider, but a majority of society would consider this kind of behavior to inadvertently create a weak family. The weaker the role of a man and stronger role of a women, the more impartial the relationship becomes as well as the more abnormal the family norm becomes. This creates separation of classes as well as gender relations, so the Cinderella story and the Gladiator experiences, becomes a cancer to our minds, which never is healed.
The only way to break away from the norms of expectation which are driven by social and cultural perspective, is that as parents we must learn to adjust ourselves so that we are do not live as the “norm”. As partners we must know that men do not always have to be emotional but if woman talks to the man at his level he can understand that his behavior is socially driven norm not something of choice. And the man can adjust his reaction to by actually trying to listen to what the women is saying not how she is saying it, then perhaps silence ,anger and hurtful words will not kill the relationship and pour poison down its veins.
We as people also have expectations of society. These expectations are very difficult in a patriarchal society where change is slow and is difficult because many of the citizens today are from the old school (older generation) and this may be all they know and this is all they are used. Assuming that this type of behavior and expectations worked before which may have brought structure and respect. Trying anything different may change it too much where “I” can’t adjust. Though baby boomers have really progressed into changing the living expectations of their children in the same hand it also back fired too. The newer generation seems to have less respect for their elders; this is why the shows like “The worlds most strictest parents” was developed and also giving a welcoming audience of “Maury”, especially maternity shows where a women are not sure who the baby’s father is because of her promiscuity, and where who men come out of the closet are the best sellers.
So are we giving our children the wrong messages, or is the society giving us the wrong messages? Is the society saying that women seek attention by being considered a person that has “been around” and can not be trusted, and are we saying that men that are “coming out of the closet” are wimps and also can not be trusted? So, what kind of message is it that we are receiving and are living?
In a perfect society men and women want to be heard, but do we want listen? In a perfect society we want equal pay, but yet we want to de-root the grass rooted idiom that says because it’s a man he should make more, and women have slept their way to success. In a perfect society we want equal justice, but we want to justify our actions because of our perception that emotions lead a women to crime, and women are crazy because they were powerless or are emotional, or that the men have anger problems or are sexual a perverts. In perfect society we want our children to have what we did not, but we continue to live in the have not’s. In a perfect society we want to be accepted for who we are as individuals, but yet we want to change into societie’s image of what we are” supposed to be”. Some in many other societies may call this hypocritical, and some may just call it crazy. But what we are expecting from society really stems from what we are, and what we will accept.
The question is: do we really have expectations of society, or do we just accept society as it is, because that is the way society works and we fear the change to be different because we may not be accepted?
It is ok to be angry but it is not ok to bring the entire social circle in an argument. It is ok to feel that you are not being treated right by society, but it is not ok to bring violence to hurt others because you’ve been hurt. It is ok feel that you are dealing with deep issues, but it’s not ok to justify these issues to create violence against another. So how should society deal with this? The only way possible is to bring moral laws to bring structure, but how many moral laws do we really live by? The more resistant to change the more moral laws are mandated. And at the end we only have our selves. What we expect from society is what we should expect from ourselves because, each and every one of us as citizen have created the society and accepted the norms.
If this made you roll your eyes or nod your head or even made you think, then I have succeeded because whether you agree or disagree it is a matter of choice or acceptance. And like my ancestor said in 1948, “Be the change you want to see in the world” Gandhi.
Gandhi stated to his people in India, that without history we do not exist and without people who made the change we can not learn. Also that each and every one of us has a purpose in life through which we create and discover, but it is up to us to find it and make a difference, recognizing that everything we do, say and don’t say is important.
Even though our society is big, everything matters. But even if everything matters we do not have to be violent, thunderous, powerful, educated or rich, but you do have to be committed to or want a change. Each and every one of us must accept responsibility and never say “it’s not my job” because that is a cop out. You do not need any collaboration or any one’s consent: always remember that if it is meant to be than it is up to you.
Don’t get so caught up in how things got to be where they are; think about what you want to change and why you want to change it and how you suppose the end outcome should be. Everything you do your self will be gratified as long as you leave no stone unturned because, leaving situations in someone else’s hands and trying to resolve the problem became more prominent than to making the right decisions.
He continues to say that we should not wait for things to be proper because whenever things change it is not a pretty sight and things may never be right. He quoted Teddy Roosevelt when he said, “Do what you can, with what you have and where you are.” The only way to understand and adapt to change is to always remember that the beginning of any change is to be aware that change is happening, and just how can we be aware changes are happening if we do not see them? Often time’s we have a negative perception of change which is to look at what is wrong and what is not working, and not looking at the possibilities. In order to have change in your life you have to accept the change in you, and can’t expect others to change and when we change, everything else changes and in doing so we become the change that we want to see the world to be.
If you want to hear the archived show of January 01, 2010, on this topic the link is below
Again thank you Lee for coming by and thank you Mike for making it entertaining.
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