Self reliant dating

And expecting someone else to anticipate my every need is not very realistic. At the risk of being too blunt, this port is dependent on what they can get from other people. I often talk to clients about how to be self-reliant. They may express their disappointment that they don’t have that special someone to share life with. It just means that you don’t allow this to be the end of the story. It has been my experience that becoming more self-reliant is a learning process. Listen to your gut, that little voice inside of you. You might need to go off by yourself in a quiet place. This is what author and clinician Terry Real calls the “Love without Knowledge” phase, where you love your partner, you may even feel you have known them for all eternity, but you have no idea yet what they do with their checkbook or dirty laundry.

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It hurts because our longing for validation and accommodation bumps up against the limitations and autonomy of our spouse.

It is an open secret that this phase of a relationship is difficult.

My clients often talk to me about how they feel let down by friends and family members who don’t take the time to listen or give them the emotional support they need. Being a self-reliant person doesn’t mean you don’t feel scared, even helpless at times. Either way, your ability to rely on yourself increases. Over time, your life experiences have provided you with wisdom you can rely on to help you make difficult decisions.

And here’s the problem with depending on other people to be our port in the storm: We can’t force people to be who we need them to be. We can’t force someone to magically appear and fall in love with us. And we can’t force a confidant to step up to the plate and guide us to the right choice. The news of their diagnosis may have left them feeling as if their life has been turned inside out, maybe even at great risk.

As much as we may feel that’s the only way to get there. This conversation is especially difficult to have with clients who are living with a chronic condition like HIV. The ongoing challenges of living with their condition can feel overwhelming at times, maybe all the time.

These are the truths that I try to help my clients to see. With high expectations of what marriage will be, many of us do not anticipate how stressful and even disillusioning early marriage can be.When the wedding celebration and honeymoon end and we are left to work out a life with another flawed human being, we are often unprepared for the disharmony experienced in those early days.When my doctor told me that I was HIV-positive, I decided I was going to need to really take responsibility for managing my own health, that nobody could do that for me. My family has never been all that supportive, they don’t like the way I live my life and have been clear about that. But among my friends, I couldn’t think of one person who I felt I could really talk to about my HIV diagnosis, who could understand me the way I wanted them to. Or they might talk about a decision they have to make and how alone they feel. But living with HIV has made me realize how much I need to be able to first and foremost be able to depend on myself, to make smart decisions, to take care of myself. They tell me how much they need a port in the storm, but don’t see one in sight. It’s hard when you feel like you’re being tossed around in turbulent waters and nobody’s there to make sure you don’t sink. The port they are looking for is outside of themselves. Gary Mc Clain, Ph D, is a therapist, patient advocate, and author in New York City, who specializes in working with individuals diagnosed with chronic and catastrophic medical conditions, their caregivers, and professionals.

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