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Preventing emotional liability: relationship investments

"The Zionists have no right to the land of Palestine. There is no place for them on the land of Palestine"


Mohammed Morsi


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Relationships are an investment...as with any form of investment; to get something out of it, you must put something into it; with a relationship, the theory rings true. As you invest in your relationship, it will grow, gain value and accrue interest; interest in the form of longevity and companionship.


When the relationship investment gets stunted, emotional liability happens- a state when the foundation of the relationship, "emotional safety" begins to shake and eventually fractures the relationship. One can view their partner/s as the one who bears the emotional liability or it can be the partner/s who feel like the one/s who are emotionally liable thus negatively impacting the relationship.




They are so many parts of a relationship that run the risk of emotional liability; I cannot stress the importance of addressing those parts when the relationship has taken a dip in stock; for some, it can be one part, for others, it can be a number of parts that are being unfavorably affected and playing out in the relationship in a way that is manifesting itself into a manner that will eventually lead to a breakup or living in a manner that is so inauthentic that it becomes suffocating to the point of emotional shutdown. Below are a number of "parts" of a relationship and its importance in nurturing these investments in order to gain interest.


Relationship needs

When we don't talk about what we need from each other, it chips away from the fundamentals of communication; how can I be a better partner if I have no clue as to what your needs are? we are not mindreaders. Discussing relationship needs is not about manipulating a situation to your advantage; it is about fostering a relationship grounded in respect and emotional visibility and safety.


Life/work balance

There is no escaping this; we live in a society that does not recognize balancing life and work; it is so bad that we find ourselves becoming the work. As a relationship investor, you must make time; time to talk, relax, relate, and release with your partner, even if it's just for a quick check-in, schedule relationship time; work is not 24/7; it is what you do not who you are.



Intimacy

Emotional and physical intimacy is an essential investment; it is close to impossible to cultivate physical connection without emotional intimacy in a relationship. There is validating evidence that confirms when there is intimacy in a relationship, all parties feel accepted, cared for, understood, and of course emotionally safe. Intimacy is a powerful form of non-verbal communication, it is the epitome of vulnerability and trust. It is gratifying gift to maintain intimacy in a relationship; it's what makes us loving human beings.


Relationship Fear

We convey our relationship needs, we ought to convey our relationship fears. For some reason we keep our relationship fears to ourselves, thinking if we don't speak it, it won't happen....so far from the truth. Discussing relationship fears gives us the opportunity to express our worries, create a game plan in the event those fears begin to surface; when you don't talk about your fears you stop being trusting of your partner, promoting distance which may lead to separation.




Fight Fair

I don't know of any relationship that will not have an occasional disagreement; however, fighting will lead to the death of any relationship investment. As a collective figure out the best way to come to a consensus without having to hurt or disrespect each other in the process; if either of you can't fight fair take a moment, breathe, and process prior to resuming. If you love each other, you can do this...


Money

You've got to talk about spending and the impact it has on the relationship-especially if living together or marriage is in the cards. Different spending patterns can cause conflict, and/or resentment (especially if one party makes more than the other). Financial conversation must be had, creating a budget to gauge expenses and a savings plan translates into a relationship growth mindset which fosters financial legacy.



Time Alone

There is nothing wrong with wanting to have "me" time. Where does it say a relationship should have us joined at the hip?? too much time with your partner/s can lead to dependency which runs the risk of being unhealthy. It is important to have your own thing in terms of interests and the time to expound on it. Society makes it seem as if couples can't have their own individuality within the relationship; I say if you don't have moments to yourself, for your interest and self-care, you will be no good as a partner within your union.


Housework

I know that you may be thinking huh?? but housework can be a relationship investment or an emotional liability. Housework is one of those things that should be talked about, Unless it is agreed upon, there should be a division of responsibility; If I cook, my partner should wash the dishes; we should alternate laundry days and figure out what chores we can do together; teamwork makes the relationship work.


Family Interaction

How much do we want to interact with our families? I find this to be a slippery slope, on one end you want your partner to get to know your family, and that is fine as long as there is a discussion about how much interaction there will be and the boundaries within the interaction. Families have a way of negatively impacting a relationship when there are no boundaries.


Boundaries

I wanted to bring this home with investment gold...BOUNDARIES.....I cannot stress how vital it is to talk about boundaries. Both of you must be clear about your wants, needs, and what it is that may make you or your partner/s feel disinterested, disrespected, violated, or disconnected. Conversations regarding boundaries are never easy because it demands that we do a self-awareness check in order to evaluate what we define as boundaries and how it influences our relationships.


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