Why Be in a Relationship?


There is a lot of pressure out there to be coupled. We fear abandonment and we fear engulfment. Just as much as we crave partnerships, there is risk involved with letting someone into your life, into your heart. Love can be an apparition. Here today, gone tomorrow. Confused with the chemicals released by sex. A desperate attempt to find a caretaker, to turn anyone into your muse.

There are thousands of fine people to spend time with. You can learn from each person. You can chart the nuances of their individuality. You can spend time, money. You can lose focus of your goals and your values, all to make room for someone else to be near. People can slowly lift you up or wreck everything you worked to build together.

We are here to be with each other. To experience the ecstasy of true union may be one of the most timeless and universal existential purposes of life. Not every relationship has to last until death do you part to be a successful relationship. However, nothing stings quite like a failed relationship. One, two, three, four - you can blast through partners in a series of mood swings. To be with another in an adult relationship, to let down your own walls knowing that if you do, you will take everything another person does, personally - you must first know yourself. You must be willing to work beyond your own fear.  

When you’re young - a lot of people look attractive. Not everyone will be compatible with you. Once you know the lifestyle you want, what your goals are, what you value you can more selectively chose the person to spend your life with. There is someone for everyone. Your match. Can you hold out until you find that person?

Just one word of advice: don’t get into a relationship for the butterflies, for a person to complete you. Get into a relationship because you are ready for a person to show you your wounds. Get into a relationship to reveal to you what another needs to be sensitive of, to learn how to understand your own feelings so you can communicate them with another. Get into a relationship to learn how to use every emotionally intense moment as impetus to do work within yourself and then to return to your lover to share what happened for you. This is intimacy, the opportunity to connect even deeper, to subtly shave away your carelessness to protect the heart of another. This is real.

Because your partner holds the potential of all that you can create with another person: a home, another person, a business, a life. We can do so much more together.


~Alison Sher.

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