Like many women I was taught all about fairy tales in love. I was brought up on storybooks where the Prince rescued the fair maiden and Disney Movies where Cinderella lived a hard life and was given the gift of her happy-ever-after once she was rescued and fell in love with the Prince. There’s nothing new to this story. Most of us have this brainwashing, men included.
But what matters is how much is this story affecting your current love and relationship experiences?
Are you yearning for that happy-ever-after in the future with Prince Charming or the delightful and perfect Princess?
Or are you in your current relationship focusing on how much he or she does not match up to your ‘ideal’?
If this is the case, you have already been hit with the fairy-tale relationship curse.
How Do These Stories Affect Our Love Lives?
Firstly, you need to take a long hard look at what you desire in life. Do you desire something ‘real’ or is your desire for love masked by this perfect fairy-tale promise that is stored in your unconscious deep down below?
Are you avoiding great men or great women who would give you so much in terms of love, learning, personal growth, healing and sweet connection because they don’t match this ideal you didn’t even know you were carrying?
Is your current relationship feeling challenged because you are looking at the other person and focusing on every flaw, they have to the detriment of the qualities in this person that you were drawn to in the first place?
Are you single because you don’t want to make a mistake by not putting yourself out there with the ‘wrong’ man or woman and by doing so not even getting to experience the real gifts that relating to another human being intimately can bring?
Kissing Frogs to Find Your Prince (or Princess)
I’ve kissed many frogs and I’ve kissed many Princes. What I discovered was that the most loving and beautiful people I met were those frogs. The Princes that appeared ‘perfect’ and all charming on the surface were pretty ugly on the inside. We never know what love being with a perceived frog can be awaken inside our hearts if we don’t allow love in, in whatever way, shape or form it arrives at our door.
A good friend of mine pointed out my own brainwashing when it came to fairy tales. I was very aware that my past relationships had this pattern. I thought ‘Wow’ in the beginning… but once the honeymoon period was over I found a lot of faults with them. I focused on everything I didn’t notice before. This ranged from their hairstyle, to how their shoulders were shaped, to the noises they made. I was so busy looking for flaws that I did not see what was there that I could love.
My friend pointed out that maybe instead loving or looking for the Prince, maybe accept the Rumpelstiltskin or Frog in my life and to recognise that what I may see as flaws that are merely my own projections of my own flaws I was unprepared to face and embrace.
This made an awful lot of sense to me.
Now, this doesn’t mean that you stay or be with someone who you really are not meant to be with, but that you begin to address what is really going on and see if you need to change your perspective on what is love, what is a relationship and is love always the ‘mushy…eyes meet across the crowded room’…instant romance that we are told it is?
Perhaps instead, those frogs are there to help you grow love. To learn to nurture love. To recognise what is here now for you, not what is in the future.
Maybe someday that ‘ideal’ Prince (or Princess) will come, but if you are so busy looking to the future for that Prince or Princess you miss out on the ‘here-now’ men and women who are just waiting to get to know you and be a part of your life. And believe me it’s worth it. To just love for the sake of loving is quite a beautiful thing, maybe your frog will be with you a week, a month, a year or more…but that’s not what is important, what is important is loving right now, whatever needs your heart’s attention.
Relationships Can Be Hard Work
One of the greatest gifts I have ever received is accepting that relationships need work, lots of commitment and discipline to be with another human being, but also, they need to be acknowledged as natural experiences, not perfect.
When you make love to someone, it’s not all clean and tidy like in the movies. People make funny noises. Your partner will use the bathroom and fart. Hairs grow out of body parts and poop stinks. And this is the same for everyone.
That lady is not going to be smelling all roses.
And that guy is not going to be smooth, clean and polished all the time.
Relationships are all about accepting the nature of life and being human and they are there to trigger us into self-love, self-acceptance and appreciation of everything we are, and the other person is.
That person you are with may get sick and need your care. You may need their care. And they are going to see you puking your guts up in the toilet sometimes or having a bad case of diarrhoea, but this doesn’t mean you don’t go for it.
Don’t Limit Love
It’s easy to limit love and put it into a tidy box that is labelled ‘this is okay’ and ‘this is not’.
You don’t know until you open your mind and heart what way love wants to come to you.
For me it came in the shape of a man twice my age.
For you it may come in the shape of a person that is the same gender as you.
From conventional to unconventional, don’t be scared to allow your heart to love outside the box.
And don’t think that every relationship needs to be crazy, hot passion and full of flowers and intense romance. Some loves are just beautiful friendships that are intimate and feel so natural to experience. Many people think lust is love and mistake the primal desires we feel with another human being to be love, but love is much more.
Love has no expiry date really, it’s unconditional. You can love someone and let them go, but still love that person simply because they deserve loving.
You can love someone so much you let them go to be with someone else.
This is real love.
Not the controlling and attached love.
Pure love encompasses ‘all that is’ in its sphere of love.
Conditional love only allows love for specifics and as the word speaks for itself, conditions placed upon it.
What love are you seeking?
Are you ready to let love in?
To hear more about this topic, listen to my podcast episode below where I speak further about relationships and love.