I talked with a client recently who had an aha! moment during the session where she recognized she was trying to make the lovely new man who had come into her life an answer to everything that wasn’t working in her life.  You know, the prince who comes to take the princess away so they can live happily ever after?  Which is great other than the fact that it makes him responsible for her completely, makes him into a thing instead of a person and means that he can’t have needs of his own or feelings or do anything contrary to what she wants or that resolves her issues.  Yuck!

Trying to make other people fit our needs or be who we need to resolve an issue fails in all respects.  Our issues are ours and so other people can’t actually fix them or resolve them or deal with them.  Trying to farm them out to someone else just delays the resolution and spreads out the unhealed behaviors/actions/choices like spreading toxic butter on lovingly toasted whole grain bread. Plus, doing that to another person is a bit like Lucy and Charlie Brown and that terrible football.  You offer the football of yourself and intimate that you’ll hold up your side of the deal, but when they come to kick it you pull it away and they fall for no reason other than you never intended to let them kick it in the first place.

I’m not saying that you shouldn’t have needs or express needs or interconnect with people to get those needs met.  By all means.  Clear communication and interdependence are part of the foundation of good relationships and help them flourish.  It’s who is responsible for getting those needs met that is the issue.  If you try to make anyone other than yourself take them on, then let the slow motion train wreck commence.  Personally, I’d rather take the Polar Express.  🙂