You feel so in love that you start seeing your partner as the most perfect, wonderful, incredible being in the universe. But the very next day that same person does something that hurts or disgusts you, you get mad, and suddenly you start seeing the most horrible person you have ever meet. Have you ever been in this situation?
Well, I think most of us have been there when we are in a relationship; we cross the line several times, and sometimes we are not even conscious of it. These two powerful emotions take control over us at different times in our lives, and they are quite similar since we only show signs of feeling hate or love, or both, with people that we care about.
The terrible idealization
As you can imagine, human beings are dreamers. We want the perfect house, to live in a perfect place, with the perfect person, and if it’s possible in a perfect economic situation. However, this desire for perfection is our doom, since this is actually so far away from us that no one in the whole human race will be able to fill that mold.
Alain de Botton explains in his talk for Google, that when we are in a relationship we tend to idealize our partner and when they don’t meet our expectations, they disappoint us, they hurt us, for not being that perfect person we dream about. So we get mad, thinking thoughts like “what a fool I am” or “why am I with this person?” Our feeling of love turns to hate with a simple action, a misbehave coming from our lover.
And of course this is our fault to think that a perfect human being exists.
A forgotten ambivalence
Melanie Klein, a famous psychoanalyst who worked with children for several years, discovered that when children were little, around the first months of life, they split the parents in two. For example, the “good mother” and the “bad mother”. In this sense they don’t understand how both personalities can be the same person, but only some months later in their development when they realize that both parents, both mothers, are indeed one. This is when we develop the concept of ambivalence in our minds, when we understand that the same “good person” that we love, is the same “bad person” that we hate.
Knowing this, when we grow up we tend to reject this ambivalence in our ideal partners, because we are looking for perfection. But when we understand that no one, no even us, can reach that, we start looking for “good enough”, as Alain states. Which is someone that, even with all their flaws, is good enough for us. In this sense, when we accept ambivalence, we are getting far away of this thin line.
The world of disagreements
Now, there might be other factors that will influence our shift from love to hate, and hate to love, every now and then. One reason, as Berit Broogat for Psychology Today explains, is the fact that when you are in a relationship, it “requires giving up a little of your autonomy and personal freedom”. Of course, not all of us feel the same about compromising this important aspects of our lives. For example, when I do exercise, I like to do it alone, but my partner want us to go for a run together in the forest, but I don’t like to run outside, only walk.
This disagreement can be present in your life in different ways. Fortunately my partner understands my preferences, because we have talked about it, but what happens if you don’t take your time to talk? You start to approach once again that thin line, maybe because your partner can’t guess what’s wrong, and you don’t tell them, because why can’t this person, who might know you better than anyone, guess what’s on your mind.
Well, no one can read minds, so why don’t you just talk about it?
But of course, there might be situations that are more unconscious, than the one I explained above. Like when you show yourself vulnerable to your lover, as we all do, and you are afraid of being hurt. So you start taking the measures that will prevent your suffering. Broogat states that “having to take that risk and live with that risk can be overwhelming to the point that our love becomes mixed with the occasional bout of hate”.
In this case, you might want to control every aspect of your lover’s life with the intention of being aware if that person is going to fail you, and when they do something slightly suspicious, we cross the line once again.
So you see, this thin line is present all the time in our behavior, but it is really in the way we manage our reactions. When it comes to romantic relationships, Alain de Botton explains that to love is to have “admiration for strength, tolerance for weakness, and recognition for ambivalence”. Thus, every time you feel that you are going to cross that thin line, take a moment to breath and remember this statement. Talk with your partner, hear them, and understand their point of view.
Finally, as almost every reconciliation ends on having sex, *wink-wink* take this passionate demonstration of love to remember why you love them so much, why this person is the one you choose, and how they are good enough. I would recommend adding your favorite sex toys to make this moment even better, just to add some fun and sensations to your reconciliation sex, as any other couple might do.