HomeMain PageRelationshipsMap of RelationshipsMap of Relationships: listen to or read the whole story


Map of Relationships: listen to or read the whole story — 6 Comments

  1. Pingback:What to do when He/She Leaves? – Al Turtle's Relationship Wisdom

  2. Pingback:Getting to Work – Al Turtle's Relationship Wisdom

  3. I have a question about avoiders and marriage. You obviously probably get that I am a clinger since I am on your website trying to learn how to navigate through “murky avoider waters”. I desire vintage love very much but I fear if I attract avoiders, I will never get married, which I assume is a natural step towards vintage love. If avoiders avoid and need lots and lots of space, why would they ever want to get married? I would think that marriage would give avoiders thoughts of being smothered and held captive by their clingy spouse. I think I understand Reliable Membership and that all humans want contact. But I can’t understand what would make an avoider want to get married.

    • Something you may have missed in your reading is that everyone is both a clinger and an avoider.  When alone completely all of us are clingers.  As we surface from our alone time, get enough quiet time, we move toward dating or connecting.  Then about half of us end up feeling overwhelmed and, volia, an avoider emerges while you slide over into even more clingy behavior. 

      Rather than thinking of clinger or avoider as a personality type, I find it best to think of those as shorthand labels for behavior – relationship behavior.

      High panicky clingers will likely pick avoiders as partners. and vice versa.  Even if they don’t appear that way at first.  

      I think the goal is to have adequate and reliable connection that is not too much.  So an “avoider” needs a relationship IN WHICH space is easily obtained.  If a clinger, like you and me, would keep our partner’s close, all we have to do is keep an eye out for their needs for quiet time and help them get it.   I remind you of my personal guiding phrase.  How do I give my partner the benefits of having me gone, while she is with me? 

  4. Thanks Tim, for dropping by. Glad that my discoveries were helpful. You might want to check out my articles on Guilt, Getting to Work, and “It only takes one to make a Marriage…” in reference to your situation.
    Years ago I read Harville Hendrix's book, (Getting the Love You Want) and was blown away by it. I red-lined all the important passages – something I hadn't done since college years ago. I was so amazed, that I handed it to my wife to read. My memory is that she threw it across the room. Some months later (that was her timing) she bought her own copy, without the redlines, and read it and was blown away. Then we both bought copies and sent them to our grown children. That incident marked the beginning of this great journey in our lives. It also showed the whole issue of synchronizing our progress. She moved/moves at a different pace (different drummer). Well hello, Al! Duh!
    My articles tend to be long or short depending on the topic. The Map is the longest, I think, because it was really the script for a planned DVD (never realized). It had to be complete in a bigger way than other articles. Most of my articles write themselves once I have completed the topic in my head and presented it to a couple of hundred couples, watched their reactions and then refined. Amazingly, once written, I have not rewritten much – they seem complete.
    Looking back I think the MAP's biggest contribution was giving me a new and very positive attitude toward the seemingly frivilousness of romance, the bitter pain of divorce, and the angry struggles of couples. I love 'em all. It also gave me a new appreciation for people who have doggedly tried marrying (living together) over and over. I think it nice to “know where I/people am/are.”
    My best wishes to you and your partner. By the way, leading her into the University of Life is the only way to go, I think.

  5. Hi Al,
    I must say it was a long read but a worthwhile one. I can see a lot of my relationship here. I just need to find a way to get my other half to open her mind and let her walls down enough to read it. I think she could use it as much if not more than me, as she is at her 3rd 'divorce' with me, while this will be my first. I am currently the clinger, trying to hold on and make it 'better', while she no longer loves me and seems to be running away from our problems, needing her space and me out of the house because 'It's over.'
    I want for us to work towards that vintage love, but would be happy for just being able to get along at the moment. I am planning to leave a printed copy of the whole 'Map of Relationships' somewhere she can stumble across it, and hope it catches her eye enough to start reading it. I have enrolled in this University of Life with the aim of getting great grades, and will hopefully be able to pass on to you, my teacher, how it all goes. Crossing my fingers, toes, and everything else though that the woman I still love and I can both make through to the vintage love I believe we can still find with each other.
    Thanks for the articles, and the hope they are giving me that I can do something to improve my current relationship, as hard and painful as the situation currently is.

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