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The calculation – the picturing of the perfect partner – presupposes… - Joe [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]

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[Sep. 14th, 2003|10:32 pm]
The calculation – the picturing of the perfect partner – presupposes that we can enter a relationship with a clear-sighted and complete understanding of our needs and capacities. This is to see a relationship as a kind of garment, which merely goes on top of, and does not in any way change, the inner person.

A relationship does not start the day two people meet; it starts in the childhood of each partner. For it is long before they meet that the template of their relationship is established. We learn to love as children. Or, more accurately, we learn a style of relating which governs our adult behavior when it comes to love. It also governs it without us noticing it. It’s unconscious.

Our individual imaginative characters – the kinds of linkage we are sensitive to, our idiosyncrasies of sensitivity and response – entail that different people will be able to see more or less in any particular work of art. And we tend to like the ones we see the most in. We’re not inventing their charms we just happen to be responsive to them. Almost all loves seem to share this feature.

Love alone can’t make another adult intelligent, generous, courageous, persistent and sociable – unless they are very close to possessing these qualities in the first place. Much of the time we will be unable to make another person happy, because that person lacks the essential characteristics which makes their own happiness possible.

meghfield signed off at 9:20:34 PM.