The Couple Who Knew Too Much
Knowing too much about other people puts you in their power, they have a claim on you, you are forced to understand their reasons for doing things... ~ Margaret Atwood (Cat's Eye)
Remember when you first met? The mystery, the starry-eyed looks, the conviction that no one could be as wonderful or as perfect as you were for each other? You moved in a passion-filled, dream-like world where all is accepted, all is approved, and all is forgiven.
Your conversations are stimulating and questions pop up like a spring--What do you like? Where are you from? Where did you go to school? What music do you enjoy? What outdoor activities do you like? What books have you read? Which films are your favorite? The dialogue flows and with each mutual favorite there is the conviction that this relationship is the one--even the things that are different you think are cute or admirable or fun.
You are so happy that you have found your soul mate and then one day your love does or says something that hurts you or you do something or say something that hurts them. It is like Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden--once they ate of the fruit which showed them the difference between good and evil, they were never the same. Now there is shame and deceit and blame and estrangement in the relationship--you have learned something about your love that you would rather not know--you learn from experience that they can and will hurt you sometimes.What do you do about it?
Maybe you learn something that surprises and saddens you about them--they don't really like monster trucking or the symphony like you do, they don't really like your parents or they are allergic to cats. This is knowledge that does not help your relationship, so what do you do with it?
1. Let it go. If you can, just forget about it. I don't mean delude yourself, I just mean if at all possible let it be unimportant compared to the love you have for each other. In the movie Princess Bride, the hero let's a lot of things go out of love.
[voiceover] Nothing gave Buttercup as much pleasure as ordering Westley around.
Buttercup: Farm boy, polish my horse's saddle. I want to see my face shining in it by morning.
Westley: As you wish.
Grandpa: [voiceover] "As you wish" was all he ever said to her.
Buttercup: Farm boy, fill these with water - please.
Westley: As you wish.
Grandpa: [voiceover] That day, she was amazed to discover that when he was saying "As you wish", what he meant was, "I love you." And even more amazing was the day she realized she truly loved him back.
He who covers over an offense promotes love, but whoever repeats the matter separates close friends ~ Proverbs 17:9
The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook. ~ William James
In a recent episode of Mad Men, the mystery man with the checkered past, Don Draper tries to be frank with his fiance secretary:
Don: You don't know anything about me.
Megan: But I do. I know that you have a good heart. And I know that you're always trying to be better.
Don: We all try. We don't always make it. I've done a lot of things.
Megan: I know who you are now.
Understand. It may help to know their motivation. they may be
speaking or acting out of fear and they need to be comforted not
scolded for their unwise words or act. Maybe they are just unaware and
when they find out it bothers you they may find they don't need it any
more. Perhaps they are reacting to something you are doing or saying and if you soften up first they will too.
Women...are wiser than men because they know less and understand more. ~ James Stephens
3. Love works both ways. Only people who truly love each other can hurt each other deeply. If you don't care about someone, what they say or do doesn't affect you as much as it does coming from the one you love. The good news is that the same love that cuts deep can heal just as dramatically.
I don't pretend to know what love is for everyone, but I can tell you
what it is for me; love is knowing all about someone, and still wanting
to be with them more than any other person, love is trusting them
enough to tell them everything about yourself, including the things you
might be ashamed of, love is feeling comfortable and safe with someone,
but still getting weak knees when they walk into a room and smile at
-- Author Unknown
Only love can break a heart, only love can mend it again. ~ Burt Bacharach - Hal David
My love knows all my ways
My best, my worst of days
My secret soul laid open
The ears that hear my whispered sighs
Have also heard my small complaints
Eyes that often see me smile
Have seen me also walk away
I’d rather that my love not know me quite so well
Still, could it be that you see me as I see you
The loving touch
The words that soak in deep and heal
The little selfless gestures
The adoring look
The laughing eyes
All the ways I know my love
My love knows all my ways
©Winsome Publishing 2010, All rights reserved
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