It’s Complicated

“The indispensable first step to getting the things you want out of life is this; Decide what you want.  Ben Stein

When I work with people or read Facebook comments that say, ‘It’s complicated,’ I am tempted to spend time thinking just what those complications might be. With clients, they tell me.

There are innumerable areas for complication in our lives. We cannot avoid them. They are with us every step of the way. Like a chess game, we must think and maneuver around them. It is also true that some complications are overwhelming. Some complications cannot be moved and they have to be dealt with in a different way.  Most fall into a few major categories; Family, relationships, money, values, work, friends, sex, decisions. There are a slew of others as well but let’s talk about some of the more prevalent ones that are suggested by the Facebook group, mostly young adults, and about their relationships.

Without knowing these people, I can only venture a few ideas and hunches. I cannot be sure and can only conjecture based on my decades of counseling in these areas, and my personal life experience with a wide assortment of people.

The first thing I would want to know is if they are in a relationship and for how long. What are the positives and what are the areas of problem or dissension. It may be that they are not feeling loved and appreciated as they wish to be. It may be another person has come into the picture to muddy the water. They may have differences of opinions based on values they have lived.

They may have drifted apart emotionally or intellectually. They may have friends who do not approve or offer support. They may have parental or step-parent issues that are unresolved or negative. Siblings can enter into this arena as well. How money is obtained or not obtained and how it is spent is a big one often. Sexual desire and practice can cause major adjustments.

If they are or have been married before that can get in the way. Comparisons will not help. If children are part of the mix that can sever the tie.

Sometimes health related problems arise and that will change the dynamics between people.

One of the biggies is when a partner has been the one to make the major decisions and the other one allowed it but then ‘grows up’ or becomes more independent and no longer will tolerate that former pattern.

If you feel you are doing your level best and can communicate in constructive fashion with you mate, then all else can be solved if mature love is at the base. Even if at times the hurt or anger get out of hand if you can then come back and talk in a rational manner you can probably work things through and have equilibrium or a new way of relating.

The end game is to be united as a couple and get through the tough spots together.

It’s ALWAYS complicated!

If there is a lack of trust that may take a bit of doing, including forgiving. Again the base line will tell the outcome.

What are the reasons for being  together? Question number one.

If the attraction and sexual drive got the thing going in the first place that’s good. If there isn’t much more added with time, that ain’t so good. To have and keep a worthwhile person it takes more than exciting the loins!!

The thing about it all is that both males and females are responsible in all of this and no one has a free pass.

If it’s complicated it took both to get it there and it will take both to get it over the hump.

Now if the complication or set of complications; and yes there can be more than one area, are not resolved with a fair shot of trying it may be too complicated to continue. No problem….learn from it.

Use all your experiences to help you grow and move along. Think what you might have known earlier. What you might have checked for. What made the situation undoable. Learn, so that the next venture into ‘love land’ might be improved. Happiness is relative and comes and lasts in spurts. It is an accomplishment not a given.

If you keep repeating the same pattern you need to gain insight into what you are contributing to the situation. This is not pleasant or easy or fast often. Maybe a professional counselor can help.

Life IS complicated and people and relationships, especially the romantic ones, are NEVER easy.

Uncomplicated can be boring too!

“It is a good thing to have all the props pulled out from under us occasionally. It gives us some sense of what is rock under our feet, and what is sand.”  Madeleine  L’Engle

Have you ever been in a complicated relationship? Why was it that way? What happened?


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