In the previous post, I talked about how important it is to understand how our unrealistic expectations affect our ROCD. This post will cover the subject of comparisons in relationships.
What do I mean by comparisons? I mean benchmarking your relationship against other relationships. Sometimes in ROCD, we look for clues that our relationship is a “good” relationship and it is according to the “standard”. Of course that for our broken brains, the standard is perfection. What we see in movies and what we assume it will be in an ideal world with perfect people.
Problems start when we do not realise some things:
- Every relationship is different
- When we observe others we only see the tip of the iceberg
- Good and strong relationships are built over time and take effort from both sides, not in an instant we find our “soulmates”
- Being loved up, infatuated, in love is not the same as loving someone
- That our ability to love our partners is not dependant on how we feel at the moment
- We need to decide beforehand what we want in a relationship – this is best done by what we are willing to give. We cannot expect to receive something that we are not willing to give.
It is true that every relationship should have a foundation. My personal favourites are: trust, respect, friendship, commitment, patience, flexibilty and love. If we start here, instead of comparing it to other relationships our chances of being successful in the long term are far greater.The other thing that happens is that our ability to be happier increases as it is not dependant on other people but ourselves.
How am I comparing my relationship to other people’s relationship? Am I setting unrealistic expectations in the process?