Starting a New Relationship

Starting a New Relationship

A new relationship has many emotional and psychological aspects that in some ways can be compared to the birth of a new baby. For example, before a baby is born it is usually safe inside the mother’s womb and it depends only on the immediate environment for everything it needs.  In a similar way, just before you meet each other, you and your new partner will probably be safe and secure, relying mostly on yourselves and your immediate environments to supply your needs.

After meeting each other and feeling connected, your relationship will begin to take on a life of its own. In time, when your connection develops into a loving bond, your relationship will be “born” and when this happens, like a baby leaving the womb, life will begin to change for both of you. Like the baby relying on its caretakers for everything, in your newborn relationship, you will both start relying on each other for your primary emotional needs – care, nurturing and love – and when you give this to each other you are both feeding the relationship the “food” that it needs to survive and grow.

New parents tend to be anxious, excited and sometimes they can be a bit jumpy since they don’t have much experience caring for a baby. And if you were a new parent and you heard your baby crying, while you may not know exactly what to do, whatever you did you would do it gently. And you would soon learn what worked and what didn’t work.

For example,  if you were a new parent, when your efforts to soothe the baby actually calmed it down you would realize that not knowing what to do or say is okay because all you need to do, and all you’re responsible for doing, is to care, be gentle, and be attentive to the infant. You certainly wouldn’t respond to the infant’s cries as though your baby knew better, and you wouldn’t complain to your baby or yell at it or drink or otherwise put your baby in harm’s way.

Now apply this mindset to your infant relationship and your role as a new parent (uncertain, excited, sometimes clumsy), and you’ll have a rough idea or what you’re responsible for providing to your relationship (love, care and attention). You’ll have a good idea of how to respond (with love, care and attention) and you’ll know how not to put your new relationship in harm’s way (withholding love, care or attention).

You’ll know that just like new parents, neither you nor your partner will automatically know what to do. So expect that just like you, your new partner can also can feel uncertain or anxious or be a little clumsy in the relationships. But like most new parents who learn how to raise a healthy and happy baby together, you and your partner can learn how to build a healthy and happy relationship.

This article is based on my book “Building Better Relationships – A Guidebook for Men”. Please call me at 949-760-7171 or text 949-244-8572 or email me at jimswaniger@gmail.com with any questions or to schedule an appointment.

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