We all need a safe space in life…a place where we feel warm, safe, protected and free to be vulnerable.
I think that’s one of the things I admire most about my family and friends who have truly healthy and wonderful relationships…both people feel safe, secure and free to be vulnerable within their relationships. They put their own fears and self doubt aside to be vulnerable and open with their partners so they can grow individually and as a couple. They help provide each other peace and security in their lives.
I was actually talking with a friend yesterday about how we viewed ourselves in romantic relationships and what that meant for each of us. Her’s and my beliefs fall along the same lines. A part of me thinks she knew where I stood before we even had the discussion. Maybe not. Other people…I think others are surprised by my answers when asked that question.
I admit it. I am strong, stubborn, educated and sassy. I own it and am proud of it. I have had to be. The circumstances of my life taught me, at various times, that the only person I could rely on was me. I’ve worked since the age of 16. I never moved back home after leaving for school. I have paid and continue to pay for all of my college education on my own. I have struggled through divorce, death and many other experiences in life where I often was told to reach out if I needed support, only to find that support absent too many times. All of these instances forced me to become stronger and develop resilience. It has sucked at times…feeling abandoned by those who promised to be there for you. But it also teaches you want to look for in others and how to care for yourself. The good thing for me…I know that if I never dated again…I would be able to take care of myself until the day I die.
But just because I am strong and independent does not mean that softer, very feminine side doesn’t exist. In fact, I have often dreamed of being the housewife raising a family.
Now let me say that if I were a housewife, it would not be spa days, soap operas and doing nothing major. It would be me caring for the home, children, running errands and things of that nature. It would a job to me. I fully admit I could never be some trophy wife who had the maid maid, posh life, sitting at home and all those things. If I weren’t raising a family, I would want and need to work. But in a perfect world, yes, I would be the partner/wife/whatever who was taking care of the home and children, cooking for the family and being that tender, caring partner until the kids had left home to be on their own…at which point I would return to the workforce.
In return, I would expect my partner to care for the other things in life. I would expect him to be that more traditional male who provided in those “old school” ways. Some of you may laugh at that thought. Some may think it is giving too much power to the man. But it is what I would want in a perfect world.
But in exchange for each of us doing our part to take care of the family and home, I would also expect each of us to be that safe place for one another. I know fear always exists when sharing new things, but I would want to feel safe and secure in his arms and know that he felt safe and secure as I wrapped my arms around him. Granted, men and women have different things that prompt those feelings of safety and security…but I think you get where I am going.
Each of us needs that safe space, especially with our relationships. We should never have to fear that we won’t be accepted or supported by saying we need to be loved, held and acknowledged as being an important part of their lives.
If you don’t have someone who helps you feel that, I hope you will find it one day. Just make sure you feel safe and secure with yourself first.
See it on Flickr.
Victoria Clawfoot Tub – Enamel
Wooden Tray & Stuffies