Compromise.

August 21, 2020

Hendrien v.d Bijl

Compromise: “an agreement or settlement reached by both sides”

According to the dictionary, compromise means “an agreement or settlement reached by both sides”. Now I do not know about you but it sometimes feels like one has to go through quite a few compromises in relationships.

You like KFC but your partner likes McDonald’s, opting to make a nice gesture, you go for McDonald’s. Every now and then you are happy that you both feel like Burger King, resulting in you being satisfied, at other times you really do not feel like McDonald’s and it can become a big fight over whose choice is being practiced tonight.

But the compromise I’m talking about is sometimes a bit more serious, that it sometimes feels like you have to make a choice between your liveliness and giving it up. For example, if you have a passion for baking and you like to bake cookies, cakes, tarts, and all the lovely things there is to bake, but the cleaning part is not so nice and not part of the passion. Every time you want to bake it becomes a fight over how dirty the kitchen is, so the compromise will be that you have to stop baking. Or maybe you really like to have a good laugh, and every time someone tells a joke you laugh so hard out of your stomach, sometimes clapping on the table like a seal who just came out of the water as the tears roll down your guard, but when you look across the room, your partner disappears in shame about the way you behave in public. The compromise will be that you have to laugh you more decently or even that you stop laughing. Such types of compromises hurt and result in a lot of pain. It feels like you have to give up a piece of yourself, a part of your own aliveness, for the sake of the relationship to work.

So, what we see is that comprises in a relationship is not effective. Because in order to be effective, one of you has to let go of a part of yourself. And maybe it works, but it’s just a temporary solution. Somewhere you will want to bake again or want to have a good laugh again and then the fighting starts all over again.

We help couples not look at how to just fix the problems by compromising and suppressing pieces of themselves, but rather how to move through to something bigger and something deeper. Where we can rather see how we can invite each other to enjoy those parts in each other, even if we do not like it. The goal is to rather have two alive human beings in the relationship, not two people who have given up everything to meet (half-dead) in the middle.

Love and life are more interested in regaining and expressing your full aliveness than just settling. Book your place today to learn more about this.

Click here to inquire about Imago relationship therapy