“I’ll have one fabulous relationship; hold the full spectrum of unpleasant human emotion please!”
Used to be, it could bring me to the edge when anyone would tell me to “calm down” or even worse, “just relax.” “Oh, you think THIS is upset? Well, you haven’t seen upset!” I would declare, and there I’d go as predicted, directly into orbit. These experiences collected and cemented my inherited belief that I was a lot; too much, too big, high-maintenance, and ultimately perhaps a bit crazed. Until one day I read Simone De Beauvoir’s The Second Sex and that was seriously the END of that!
Which was about a million years ago, but I can remember it like it was yesterday. I was in the car at a stoplight with my boyfriend at the time, who just happened to become the human sacrificial straw that broke this camel’s back. He asked me quite simply why I had to be so dramatic. What I heard was, RELEASE THE KRAKEN!
“You mean, why can’t I just say whatever I needed to calmly and rationally, rather than flap my hands about spastically, roll my eyes and gesticulate at every opportunity to make whatever point I feel needs emphasis with the HELP OF THE REST OF MY BODY?” I flapped and floundered my body around to emulate each point, while my nostrils flared and I think I may have strewn spittle, judging by the horrified look he had plastered across his face as he—careful not to make any swift motions—wiped it away. “WELL, let me tell you WHY! YES, I do, as you have been so kind to point out, have access to the FULL RANGE of human emotion, and have found over the last x-and-so number of years I have roamed this planet, that if it were not for people like myself, you, and all the people like you, would be quite bored. You MUST like it, or why would you be with me?” All he could do was stare at me. It was like I blew his rubber dingy out of the water with a cannon bomb. What could he say? I remember thinking what he probably heard was: “WAH wah, wah wah WAH WAH, wah, wah, blah blahbiddy blah, people, wah wah, and furthermore…BLAH BLAH and you’re boring!”
That relationship was case of “all chemistry, no compatibility.” Something I like to think of these days in terms of analog VS digital. While it’s not fair to say that the analogs are less capable or less emotional, it’s fair to say they are definitively so different that one ought not be confused with the other. For example, I am a more digitally emotional type person (a greater band width and interest in emotions), but once upon a time I would pretend to be more analog, to control my feelings and emotions. I learned that it was more pleasing to others if I were a less high-maintenance type of creature than what I actually was—a deeply sensitive, highly intuitive, expressive and feeling person. The lesson I learned from this exercise was clear: no need to ever try to suppress who I really am, make myself small, or dumb my authentic nature down, nor to make someone else wrong for being the way they are. In his case, a more reserved, emotionally conservative, easygoing type. To not be who I was AT him or crucify him for not loving my big nature, rather to see myself and him for what and who we were. While it’s true, unconsciously speaking, that opposites attract, we have free will to choose which poles of opposites ultimately bring out the best versions of ourselves. This combination did not!
From there I decided I would attract a relationship with someone who LOVED my big self, my intensely feeling, strong, direct, passionate nature. They wouldn’t be offended or intimidated, rather they would embrace me for it! I actually wrote two full pages detailing this one desire! Sure enough, when my future husband showed up, the shoe fit perfectly! It’s about being a magnet from a place of self-acceptance and love, not spite or resentment! So whether you’re analogue or digital, easygoing or dramatique, you-say-potatoes-he-says-hash-browns, like I always say: Great Relationships Begin Within!
About Maryanne: Maryanne is a relationship activist, coach, radio personality, award-winning author, and frequent guest on TV and radio talk shows around the country. Millions of people worldwide listen to her three radio talk shows each week: On Maryanne Live! she interviews experts in the self-awareness field such as Ram Dass, Dr. Helen Fisher, Jean Houston, and more; on The Power of We with her husband David Raynal, they look at fresh ways of changing old paradigms. Heart Talk with The Sole Sisters Kris Carlson, Eve Hogan, and Maryanne repaves the road less traveled, with stories of waking up and staying awake real-time.
Maryanne is a go-to expert for Hollywood Life and other online publications. Her blogs can be found on blogher.com, sheknows.com, askdanandjennifer.com, and dozens more sites. She’s appeared on shows such as ABC’s “20/20,” Disney’s “Soap Net,” and San Francisco’s KGO-ABC’s “View from the Bay,” etc. Along with a private practice, she leads transformational workshops for men and women, awarding the Certificate of Responsible Relationship, or CORR®, which is certified by the State of California for Continuing Education credits (provider # 4757). She’s the author of the award-winning book, Skinny, Tan and Rich: Unveiling the Myth, as well as Hindsight: What You Need To Know Before You Drop Your Drawers!, the 5-DVD workshop workbook Great Relationships Begin Within, and the CD series “Thrive: Seven Essential Truths.” Currently working on two new books and a Relationship Divination card deck. Maryanne’s gift is translating life’s complexities into practical tools for creating healthy, fulfilling, sustainable relationships. She’s recognized by her peers and students as a wise, witty, soulful teacher who walks her talk.