Get The Ring: How to Find & Keep the Right One for Life.
Mordechai Rottman - Part 7
Number Three – The Whole PersonThe third thing that we want to look for is mutual appreciation of personality. Let me explain what I mean. I mean appreciating the whole person. To appreciate a whole person you have to look not just on what you enjoy about the other person’s personality but also on what you don’t enjoy about the other person’s personality.
When we meet people, sure there are things that we like about them and there are things that we don’t like about them. So when we focus on the things that we like about them, we like them. When we focus on the things that we don’t like about them, we don’t like them. Very often people go into marriages with an idealized sense of what a spouse is supposed to be. A combination, perhaps, of all the great qualities you saw in your mother with none of the shortcomings, or, vice versa, all the great qualities she saw in her father without any of his shortcomings. This unrealistic view is something which could bring a couple to divorce rather quickly. When you look at a person you have to learn to appreciate the total person, and realize that both what you enjoy and what you don’t enjoy are two sides of the same coin.
Let me give you an example. Let’s say a girl comes from a home where her father was very irresponsible. Her father was a drunk, didn’t support the family, disappeared for days on end; the mother was responsible, she cared, she cleaned, she washed, she went to work, she supported the family, she got the kids through college. Her father was there when he is in the mood, and when he wasn’t in the mood he disappeared. And all this girl has heard about from the day that she was able to remember is her mother saying — Dear, marry someone responsible. — And so the thing that she’s looking for more than anything in a spouse is somebody who is responsible. And so she starts to date and she finds a guy who is responsible, super responsible. And everyone that she asks says that he is the most reliable person that they have ever met. And sure enough, she feels it. She feels a sense of security when she’s with him. This is not a person who is going to run off and disappear. This is a person who has held a job for many years; this is a person who has a good track record as far as starting and finishing things. And she feels that this is a person she’ll be able to rely on. And they get married. After being married for a while she starts to feel a bit bored in the relationship. He’s not as exciting as she wanted her husband to be. Yes, he’s reliable, he’s up every day at five and he’s back every day at five. And he goes to sleep every night at ten, and he eats the same thing for dinner every night. He’s so reliable and so consistent that sometimes it gets on her nerves a bit. — Hey, don’t you want to have a little fun, go out, hit the town? — No. He likes to stay home. Every night he reads his newspaper, relaxes on the couch, dozes off for about ten minutes before he goes to sleep. And she starts to get really frustrated with him. She goes out. She goes out to work, she goes out to meet friends, she goes shopping. And she sees guys that are so much more
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