There’s a commonly held belief that relationships are a dance of false faces, beginning with the first lies we tell each other to seem appealing enough to not reject. We fear rejection, and yearn for companionship, so it’s natural that we lie or hide things about ourselves to achieve that, right?
Not necessarily. After all, this is only one way of experiencing the world. If this is an idea that you hold about relationships, it might benefit you to look more closely at it, to think critically about it, in an effort to come to some more adaptive conclusions.
Ultimately, it’s about where we are taking our script from. For most people, we follow a script prescribed from “norms” and expectations that are commonly expressed through the media we consume, from soap operas and cartoons to news and radio talk show. Before we ever knew we were attracted to other humans, Disney had taught us how society expected us to behave when we were pursuing intimacy with others.
These expectations are told to us from a million different angles, and because we didn’t have a chance to learn anything else before this was thrust upon us, it’s what we practice.
Fear guides every second guess and awkward pause we experience, because something is being held back. You have to practice hearing the fear in the moment, asking ourselves “what am I not doing right now that feels “right”?’, and then lean into that. Do it. Or talk about the desire to, and share where it comes from.
That is the genuine, authentic you. You are showing them who you really are. And sure, you run the risk of being rejected. That comes with being real, being genuine and not feeling ashamed of it.The risk of not being wanted.
However, it is incredible what you can build when you find someone who smiles and says back, “yeah, that’s me too”. It means that they see you for who you experience yourself as being, and even more importantly, that they also want to be real, and you just helped them open the door to that.