Did this home environment suit your personality/wants/needs?What do you predominantly seek or need in a partner?
Temperament theory identifies our core driver or desire, and we usually want a partner who is similar (or complementary) to ourselves. You may have a predominant preference for:
NFs – a deep and meaningful bonding, enjoying abstract communication: SOULMATE
(eg. Meredith & Brian the filmmakers, Jackie, Sophie)
NTs – a worthy partner for intellectual pursuits: MINDMATE
(eg. Kate & Matt, Gabe)
SPs – entertainment, movement, freedom: PLAYMATE
SJs – social participation, security, safety: HELPMATE
(eg. Tom & Catherine)
Similar temperaments merge most easily, seeking the same objective. Complementary pairings indicate that NFs & SJs (SOULMATE & HELPMATE) or NTs and SPs (MINDMATE AND PLAYMATE) are more likely to communicate more easily than opposites (that requires more work but can yield much stimulation and stretch).
How did you become a couple?
Our personal research has indicated 4 main scenarios, and while most people once met via Propinquity, these days it’s via Internet Dating. On-line, you are unlikely to meet your partner after only meeting two or three people; statistics indicate you may need to go on 50 dates to meet your partner. Due diligence about sites, patience and perseverance is advised.
Close proximity. Who you regularly bump up against in your everyday life via school, university, work, neighbours, church, friends
Clip: Davida & James
Relatives or a professional decide on a match
*You meet The ONE – inexplicable fate, fairytale ‘out of the blue across a crowded room’
*‘Romantic’, unexpected, exotic, worldwide
*A conscious search on-line
Internet dating, seeking people at a similar level of emotional maturity with relevant goals, interests, backgrounds, attitudes, honesty/transparency
What did you learn about Love in your family of origin?
Remember that our parents or caregivers usually try to do the best they can (they don’t try to do their second-best) Sole parent families or extended (multi generational), or blended families are common; nuclear families less so.
- How was love demonstrated in your family?
- What behaviours did you witness between family members that reflected love?
- What would you like for the family you create? How might you go about creating it?
‘LOVE ASSIST – Shared Wisdom’
Being in a relationship isn’t always easy: the greater self-awareness and self-love, and the more tools or resources, the better your relationship. Self-reflection, self-responsibility, therapy and counselling, reading/studying, and support from others enables you to recognise patterns, improve interpersonal communication skills, and become more present in your relationships.
When we join together it is helpful to be aware of what your family of origin stood for; without this self-insight, we’re attempting to journey forward into an unexplored territory (living together, being married etc.) whilst simultaneously also slipping back into our forgotten heartland of our family of origin issues.
What was swallowed whole in early childhood is regurgitated 25 years later with your partner; you cough up the undigested bundle of actions and feelings. Our goal is to create our own idiosyncratic partnership together; not what our families or society expect of us.
With one in two marriages ending in divorce, it is likely that you may re-partner, and you may be required to negotiate a blended or stepfamily, or a long-distance or a ‘live apart together’ home arrangement. Individual or couples counselling or family therapy can enhance your skills, empathy, and understanding. Seek early support.
Australian Psychological Society 1800 333 497 your local Relationships Australia 1800 RESPECT 1800737732
With Respect 1800LGBTIQ 1800542847