I remember telling my therapist (long, long ago) that the one thing I wanted to work on in therapy was why I was drawn like a moth to a flame to romantic partners who inevitably caused me tremendous distress and heartache.
I could recognize them from a mile away, but inexplicably still sought them out.
Clearly my internal operating system was deeply and fundamentally flawed.
I no longer believe this about myself (thankfully), but my own journey to wholeness has in large part included an exploration into the nature of love.
An apt topic, with Valentine’s Day looming up ahead, and so I decided to take some time this week to send you one of my favorite resources on the Nature of Love, specifically … Problematic Romantic Love.
If you haven’t yet discovered the School of Life videos, you are in for a treat.
In Alain de Botton’s fabulous and funny talk on the various issues he has with romantic love, he points out that we are not necessarily drawn to people who can love us, but rather to people who feel familiar to us.
Depending on how you were loved as a child, you can see how this might become somewhat problematic. It was for me.
He explores various myths like …
- “If you love someone, you should be able to be completely honest with them at all times in all ways.” (
- “My partner should just understand me without my having to explain myself to him or her.” (10:20)
- “If someone loves you, they will accept you just as you are and will never try to change you.” (11:18)
Finally, he points out ways in which romantic love is the enemy of true love, and reminds us that we are all a little bit crazy. A man after my own heart 🙂
At the very end, he outlines a Curriculum of Love and also gives you a few things to reflect upon as you self-assess whether or not you are Ready for Love.