It Takes Two to Create a Relationship

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I’m not sure why we seem to feel relationships are tricky. They seem to be the hardest to figure out when people are not either willing to bend or participate in them. The reality is, it takes two to create one. There is no such thing as a one-sided relationship. If only one party participates then it is NOT a relationship. Or if there is disrespect within the connection, there is no relationship there either.

We often fail to get the point about relationships. Regardless of what type: friendship, romantic, parent-child, or business, a relationship can not exist without both parties being engaged in it. Don’t be shocked or surprised when someone walks away from it all or no longer desires to be involved in a conversation with you if you are not willing to participate. In order to do that we have to have feelings about the connection. If we want to truly know if we do have those feelings there has to be communication and interaction. Even more important, there must be mutual respect.

I personally hit a resolve when it has come to relationship connections.

  1. I will not be a part of a connection if there is a lack of respect. I can not respect someone if they do not respect me as a person.
  2. If there is no or very little response to me I do not consider someone in my life. It takes two to tango and if there is no initiation on the other party’s part, I will assume they do not desire me in their life.
  3. If someone is not willing to communicate and understand my position and my heart then there is no relationship in my world. I do that for others when they allow me to, speak to me kindly, and offer their friendship. Otherwise, there is nothing more to say.
  4. I will consider myself abandoned if there is no response to my initiation of conversation and connection. Life is too short to have one-sided conversations.
  5. I will consider myself abandoned if there is no heart-to-heart understanding or even an attempt at one.
  6. There is no such thing as “I love you but I don’t have the time to connect with you”. Sorry, love can be present but it can not be expressed without connection.
  7. I have boundaries in my life, everyone should. If they are continually crossed, I consider myself without you.

These might seem a bit harsh but, for me, they have to be true. You might have different ones, and that is ok. Our differences make us unique, but they don’t always make us friends.

Loving you from here,

Dr. Rev. Jenine Marie Howry

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Guilt by Association?

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Guilt by association has always been a bit confusing to me. At the root of the idea, we are judged by those we hang around. In some situations, I have to agree with this. If like attracts like, then it only makes sense; we embrace the ideas of those with whom we choose to spend our lives. It might even be assumed we embrace the opinions of those we choose to converse with regularly. Since like does attract like we are usually pretty correct in our thinking when associating someone’s ideas with those they continually connect.

Sometimes we are subject to other’s life choices even though we disagree with them. When the guilty flag gets attached to our behind because of the choices of loved ones, their actions, or behavior, life becomes unfair. Whatever a person’s choices are, they can unfairly become our problem when others view them as wrong, but we suffer the consequences.

There can be times when those we love make decisions we can’t possibly agree with, but we love the person just the same. Outsiders might not look at this the same way. They see our continued love as meaning we support all of their ideas and actions. This can be a far cry from the truth. It is entirely possible to love people but not agree with or love their actions. We can even separate our lives from that part of their life or even most of their life. Whatever our personal choice is would be totally up to our discretion.

Being deemed guilty by association is fair when we participate in discretionary deeds or partake of the same ideas. If we are not involved, then the deeds, thoughts, ideas, and choices belong to the one making them. Sometimes it takes a drastic step away not to be associated with another’s actions, and sometimes we leave their lives altogether. It’s a matter of the degree of the issue. If someone’s actions or ideas grossly violate our own ethical, moral standards and boundaries, then a life disconnect might be the only move to make.

Sometimes I speak from experience, and other times I speak from merely the knowledge I have gleaned from. In this case, I speak from experience. I know what it is like to have my life torn apart because of the actions of others. Who can stop the flying judgment arrows when someone close to us makes a very discretionary choice?

I have suffered my degree of humiliation and have even had to lose almost everything I worked hard for because of someone’s actions in my life. I had no control of their actions, and I had no control of other’s responses. Unfortunately, I had no control of my losses either. My experience still hurts to this day. Others’ judging hearts caused so many losses in my life that I left everything in my life behind me. I moved, and I moved on. Moving does not change the events or even the painful part. The hard part is when the judgment comes from those we would expect it should not.

Thank God I have my spiritual support from God. I would not have survived the slow bleeding in my life that went on for years, not months or days, years. There has been a long road, and over 2000 miles traveled toward a way to find healing. I’m still not there yet. The slower the bleed, the longer it takes to heal; apparently.

Loving you from here,

Dr. Rev. Jenine Marie Howry, Ph.D.