“Go If You Want To”: How remaining Non-Possessive will set you free, and improve your relationships!
I’m a weird guy. So long as it doesn’t cut into my time, I encourage women I’m dating to keep their social circle, keep up with their girlfriends, have male friends, live in the world, etc. I don’t look to isolate. I don’t need to. My mindset was always that more than likely, the more time she spends around other people, the more likely she is to appreciate me. I’ve dared people, friends, and girlfriends, probably one step too far at times, to leave if they are unhappy, to find something better.
This is abnormal. To not want to isolate, control, confine, to keep something that doesn’t want to be mine, makes me a weird guy. I’ve realized this with time. The norm for most is to smother their partner into submission, pressure them into commitment, monitor their behavior like school principals so they don’t step out of line. What they may or may not realize is that it’s not only a lack of respect to their partner, whether they deserve it or not, but to burden themselves with such petty responsibilities in their own relationship, is also disrespecting themselves. So again, I am weird in this regard, and I am okay with that. Presently especially, with the older I get, and the more mature the women I invite into my life become (hopefully), it’s totally within their right to say, “Hey look, I’ve experienced all I need to experience, I’ve seen enough, no thanks. You, and a few close friends is enough for me.” Or whatever the case. And some have. Anyone who is capable of doing that is a matured person with complete inner security, and more than likely that someone is probably a keeper.
Before we go further, we first have to acknowledge a fact that we all know is true deep down. As much as we may have tried to convince others that it is just a sign of our love, or that it is some form of flattery when experiencing it from others, we all know that possessiveness comes from a place of insecurity. That’s why to be called ‘possessive’ isn’t a compliment. No one ever uses it that way. It’s why most will do anything to not appear possessive or clingy. I have one female friend who was always getting herself involved in these types of relationships, with her boyfriend always being the possessive one. With one man it was clingy and overbearing, with another it was acceptable, almost endearing possessiveness. They were behaving in the same exact manner. But clearly they were coming, or she perceived they were coming, from two completely different places. But ultimately, they fell into the same category. When you want it, its ‘cute’ and endearing, when you don’t, it’s ‘possessive’ and annoying. It’s completely subjective. But never healthy.
Whether it is with relationships, or anything your blessed with in life. There are two paths. Two choices for you. You’re either in a mindset of constantly isolating, sheltering, settling so as not to rock the boat, killing growth, selfishly afraid to lose at any moment. Or, you’re constantly pushing, daring, challenging, fostering growth, almost eager to lose at any moment because you only want what is meant to stay. Which type are you? Which type do you want to be?
Sadly, the first type makes up the majority of human beings. They’re born, live, and die essentially all in the same place. They’re playing not to lose, instead of playing to win. The second category are the explorers, the achievers, and the ones who are more than likely to find true happiness, in relationships, and beyond in life. They know what they want, and what they are entitled to. But they aren’t possessive. Because they do not live in fear of reality because it may hurt them. Their relationships are constantly daring, constantly presenting challenges, constantly progressing. They don’t live in fear of what may not be, or what they may not have.
This is how so many people can end up trapped in unhealthy relationships for years, or be in situations where there’s unfaithfulness for long periods of time before it comes to the surface. They have willing pulled the wool over their eyes because not comfortable with facing reality. They’re afraid to push, to dare, because they know they are not going to like, or be ready to accept, what is on the other side. If you instead remain plugged in, unafraid to question, unafraid of the answers you don’t want to hear, you will detect problems immediately when they come to surface, and many times even be able to prevent them before they have passed the point of no return. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it. Two people plugged into a relationship, and plugged into each other, can be a very powerful thing.
Consider that most people are so selfish with their partner that they need the illusion of “there is no way out” to keep from giving up on their partner at the first opportunity. This is what many people have reduced marriage to. Whether it’s not wanting to face the shame of divorce, or it doesn’t make financial sense to give up, and start over. Maybe it’s not marriage, but having a child in the picture instead. Whatever the created obstacle is. They are imagined obstacles, as evidenced with the divorce rate, millions paid out in divorce settlements over the years, and single parent households. It seems the more obstacles we create and imagine, the more unhappy we become with ourselves and each other. Human beings are blessed, and cursed, with the free will to do what we want, whenever we want, regardless of the situation, how it may hurt us, or who it will hurt. It is us as a society that turned marriage from a celebration of a union to something much darker, limiting, and self-serving. Confining. Many are more than happy to lock down the first sign of what they perceive as a good husband or wife, because they simply enjoy the peace of mind of thinking their relationship will be immune, once they just confine their significant other.
I can’t speak for all of America on how this way of being is working out, but we know that half of marriages last, half end in divorce. Many that do ‘last’ are still unhappy marriages. Personally, I don’t need an obstacle, or noose around my neck to prevent me from following through on my decisions. I’m not convinced I’m completely alone in this. But, sadly, for others the ‘threat’ of that can actually be an effective, if not completely healthy way to keep a person and a relationship committed and on track. I’m not even hating on it. Because one thing I feel strongly about is, however they get to that point, whatever stakes it takes, a man and a woman should always be at a point where they are prepared to stick by one another through thick and thin. Because the tough times come. And they come hard. A house divided against itself cannot stand. So it’s better than nothing. But is something, or someone, so easily able to be confined really worth having anyway?
Now, I’m not saying to continually dare the people in your life to walk out the door to the point of being obnoxious. And if you do, at least be prepared for some to take you up on that offer, and walk away, for better or worse. But what I’m really suggesting rather, is simply a mindset, something cultivated inside you, that is not only looking out for your own best interest, but for that other person also. As the saying goes, “If you love something set it free. If it is yours, it will come back to you. If it does not, it never truly was.” I’m not saying to push them away to prove this point. I’m saying it is okay to set it free, to let them go, let it go, your tight grip. Even if you believe it to be ‘yours’. Because ultimately, it can’t be yours simply because you are forcing, or pressuring it to stay. Because the only circumstance that a grown human being can truly be yours, is if it chooses to stay.