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Monday, October 19, 2009

Co-ownership or Silent Partner

Today one of my patients put forward the possibility that there may be two kinds of people: One kind knows what they want and are intent on going after it.  They see their partner as someone who can help them in their quest.  The goal is clear.  The partner is expected to cooperate or, at least, that is the hope.  For some, the partner is even selected because of being seen as able to facilitate movement toward the goal.

The other kind says:  "What do you want?"  "What do you think?"  This person is in a joint venture, wants to consult with their partner and looks for an outcome that is the result of planning together.  In fact, the planning  is experienced as an enjoyable part of the process.
This one may not have the drive and clarity of the first but they have a real wish to know their partners ideas and wishes.  Their life together will, it is hoped, be a cooperative venture.

My patient is currently in a relationship with someone she describes as being like the first person described above.  She was comparing this experience to a former relationship with someone of the second type.

Her concluding comment on this topic was that perhaps she could benefit by developing more of the former attitude herself as she sees herself as always helping and supporting her partner's projects.  Sometimes one senses an underdeveloped quality of their own as being more active in another and that becomes attractive.

What do you like?  Are you attracted to the focused type with definite ideas about how life should be?  Or do you seek a partner who likes to make decisions that have been mutually decided upon?  Do you like to be asked your opinion?  Or do you enjoy an adventuresome, active individualist?

Do you see yourself in either of these categories?  Or, perhaps as a person with some of each?  Would you like to be more one way than the other?  Just something to think about.

1 comment:

  1. I have been a bit of both. And I've been with both types of personalities. Interesting post!