No amount of loving him is going to make him love me. No amount of loving him is going to make him love me HOW I need to be loved. I realized this in deep self-work. I lacked so much love for myself I demanded it from my partner. I took everything he did as either a validation of his love for me or a slight on who I am. I gave so much love and made so many allowances for his transgressions and slights that I expected the same from him and thought I was offering love. There is unconditional love but that doesn’t mean unconditional acceptance. When you are the sacrifice for another person, that isn’t who you need to be with. We all deserve love and respect. Unfortunately, we can’t make people love or respect us. When that happens, we need to be strong enough to walk away instead of making allowances. It’s hard.
In dealing with control issues, we learn to think that we can make other people feel or behave a certain way. We think if we treat them how we want to be treated we are teaching them what the “right” thing to do is and how to behave. The reality is all that’s doing is pissing people off and making them see our controlling behaviors and creating resentment. Now, if someone is intentionally not meeting our expectations or a mutually agreed upon expectation, then that speaks to their character. But if we don’t have clear definitions of what our “absolutes” are, then the other person isn’t likely intentionally hurting us. I fought for things my partner didn’t know I was fighting for. I did it to try and make him love me, to make him see that he had something valuable in me. All he saw was my disappointment any time something didn’t work out how I expected it to. That was never my intention. That was an overwhelmed and overworked nervous system creating issues that didn’t exist.
But the real point is that we have to learn to supply love for ourselves before we can demand it of other people. We have to learn what love really means and how to give it freely before we demand it of other people. Love is an inside job before it comes from the outside. Eventually we have so much love it simply flows from us. We exude it instead of consume it. We learn to sustain ourselves and to share what we have at the same time. We shift from need and desperation to a desire and ability to do it for ourselves. It starts with building our own foundation first rather than expecting someone to hold us up. What happens if they had a shaky foundation to begin with? They can’t offer what we need. So learn to give for yourself, learn to do for yourself. That is where the fulfillment comes from. That is where we build the lives we are looking for. Love ourselves first.