Two people with pending accounts live together in the same space-time due to a mandatory confinement. An invisible external enemy is sovereignly distressing them. An explosive combination. How does this story end? Whether the situation explodes will depend on its protagonists.
In the name of love, we establish a series of assumptions in our relationships that lead us to unconsciously create an emotional “accounting”. The balance of the accounts, in general, is usually negative. This way of functioning, these balances, are common in our daily life in the different fields and characters of our existence and the duties that saturate it.
But what happens when accounts are concentrated in the same space-time and with the same person due to mandatory confinement? If we also add that outside there is an invisible enemy that greatly distresses us, the combination can become explosive. The attitude adopted by the protagonists in each case will determine that this explosive material explodes in a destructive way or becomes a fun flare.
OUTSTANDING DEBTS AND REPROACHES DURING CONFINEMENT
To the extent that the nerves are on the surface during confinement, any element, task or question that arises on a day-to-day basis can be a source of conflict. Emotional “debt” can be destabilized by trifles: who does the shopping, the food, or who takes care of the children’s homework (if any). The tricky thing is that many of these issues will be burdened by what we feel like previous debts.
So, in an almost uncontrolled way, the reproaches appear: who does more, who does less, how much you have put in and how much I have put in. That it is not that you do not have to be equitable in the distributions, but it is that sometimes you want to take a toll on the past.
Why are we so demanding with our emotional accounting as a couple? We assume that whoever lives with us is the one who knows us best and that, therefore, is the one who, or who, is going to understand us the best. We think that they will understand any of our gestures, resignations or attentions aimed at supporting the common project. This is true and false. And this thinking is the origin of many of the debts and duties that we carry from the past.
Surely it is true that it is our partner who can best understand us because it is with whom we can show ourselves more as we are. We do not have to keep up appearances and we allow ourselves to take out our frustrations and miseries. Which is not without its reverse as well. On him or her we empty them, like a recycling container, and on many occasions, we make them be its cause.
But, be careful, because if we start from the premise that they know a lot about us, then they would have to know everything, they would have to realize what each of our expressions intends to communicate, anywhere and at any time in our lives. If not, we believe that there is an underlying bad intention, which will remain in our emotional account, in the form of debt.
TWO TYPES OF DEBTS AND TWO WAYS TO CLAIM
When outstanding debts are claimed is when discussions arise. There is a differential style in that way of claiming debts.
- Claiming to be fully accepted as we are
If we get to the bottom, we see that there are people who want total acceptance of the other. If not, they do not feel recognized or loved. When they claim their debt (something that some men do when they are pressured to speak) they often say something like: “I don’t understand why you get angry if I already do things.”
Behind these words what is hidden is a self-fulfilling prophecy: “You no longer love me! You no longer accept me as I am!”, Which closes the doors to dialogue because everything will be read from that code.
- Demand that the other discover what we need at all times
This style is totally the opposite. It is to want to imply that the circumstances, characters in the environment, forms of manifestation. change and, therefore, the needs that they entail, too. They demand that the couple learn to read the signs not as something fixed, immutable and total, but as something dynamic, they demand the complicity of the partner. This position is more frequent among women, although not exclusively.
The underlying message is that there is no unconditional love between adults and there is the possibility of sharing. It is another way of looking at relationships, but that collides in many moments with the previous one.
HOW TO PREVENT EMOTIONAL ACCOUNTS FROM ENDING THE RELATIONSHIP
We have, then, the same language, but two different codes and, to a certain extent, opposed. How to get out of the quagmire? With confinement we have more time, so:
- Let’s begin to bring out, with our partner, the ghosts, musings, theories, fears and also reproaches.
- Let’s be prepared for a good storm, rain shower or earthquake. It will surely be the first thing that comes up.
- Let’s not give up. Let’s keep talking, if not at that time, then another. Let’s try to get our interlocutor to unravel the keys and the logic of their behaviors, because many times neither they, nor oneself, know what they are. You have to have patience and courage to be able to listen to arguments that we may not like at all, but that the frame gives us as a starting point.
- We will do the same by exposing our own way of interpreting life and relationships. We will try now, to create a certain empathy regarding the motivations of our anger, what it makes us feel and the way we understand love.
- We will be creating a new frame. Knowing a little more about the other, which will mix the two codes and which, surely, will allow us to merge and dilute the absolute limits on which our defenses, fears and expectations rest.
- This does not imply that an exact combination of the two ways of seeing and living life will be achieved, but it does imply a greater knowledge of who we have in front of us, and of a process that can help us in other moments of living together.
- We will also have to learn to respect that there are ways of enjoying very different things and situations. Not everything happens for sharing, or for lack of criticism. The peculiarity of each member must also be respected.
- We all start from the search for an Ideal of love, be it like finding a Unity without gaps, or like a perfect fit complementarity. However, in the human, that can only be partially produced, which does not have to be bad.