I often write about myths our culture perpetuates in relationships and this blog’s title sums up one I’ve been thinking about recently:
We’ve all heard people say something to the effect of: “You should never try to change someone…you should love them for who they are.” I recognize that my argument is partly a matter of semantics. I get it—there’s truth in that statement: It’s obviously not a great idea to love a workaholic while holding out for the day when they choose not to make work such a priority or to love a couch-potato while pinning your hopes on them someday becoming an outdoorsy-athlete. But this is the shit we take and ruuuuuun with.
I see people using this “don’t ask me to change” stuff as a defense against being responsive to a partner’s needs and that sucks.
I’m gonna suggest that we live our lives excited about all the cool ways we’re going to grow and change and that our primary relationships are KEY in showing us those places. (Man, my husband’s gonna love holding me to that one.)
We need to enter relationships with the understanding that we are going to be constantly changing, adjusting course, becoming more clear and open in our ability to love. That can look like:
learning to be vulnerable (a biggee)
learning to say NO
learning to ask for what you need
learning to laugh more
learning to bring up conflict
learning to be more punctual
learning not to judge harshly
and a gajillion other things.
So–ask yourself, Do you dig in your heels when met with a request to change? Is it a knee jerk reaction?
Because it’s true–no one should ever force you to change–no one CAN in fact. But choosing to respond and change and grow to love more fully and deeply is a beautiful thing.