I had a flashback recently of sitting on a high stool in the science lab at school and looking at a plastic model of some imaginary molecule with spherical atoms held in place with rods of ‘covalent’ bonds. I think the exercise was to show how all the distinct atoms made a unique compound and how some strong bonds and other weak ones determined the characteristics of the molecule. I thought about the effect of those bonds and their contribution to the integrity of the whole structure making it squashable, stretchable, wobbly or solid (or the scientific equivalent).
I see relationships being sustained by lots of little bonded elements such as special moments and shared expectations. People with open hearts who can forgive, accept and be flexible seem to have strong, enjoyable relationships that keep attaching on to others building up strings and networks. Whereas others, with more black and white, inflexible views, seem to be more isolated and less well connected. Their ability to make relationships is limited and although their limited bonds seem strong, they are also vulnerable because of their inflexibility.
I appreciate how difficult I am to get on with when I am intolerant, inflexible and uncompromising. I have had to learn to be prepared to change my point of view and then reach out to my partner. I found the first requirement was to step down from myself and practise self-acceptance and forgiveness.
Try looking at the big picture possibilities of your relationship and then start with one bond at a time, reaching out in hope with the intention of being as accepting and accommodating as you can. Once you feel how the strength of a bonded moment lends stability to your overall relationship, you will start creatively looking for more opportunities.
It seems to me that too many people come together with an off-the-shelf relationship, such as marriage, that doesn’t suit either their unique contributions or expectations from it. Then the bonds become strained and even break with powerful and unexpected reactions.