I have been married and divorced twice in my life. After my second failed marriage I chose to remain unmarried while continuing to try to find "the one." I became what is referred to as a serial
monogomist. Which means, I date only one person, but that one person has changed many times through the years. I have spent an extraordinary amount of time in my life trying to understand the key to finding the right person and
how to make that relationship last.
I have often concluded at the end of a relationship that while I was willing to examine myself and my baggage to understand my failure in the relationship, I was never with someone who was also willing to do the same. This willingness
to self-examine and modify I believed was the key to finding and sustaining a successful relationship.
Harville Hendrix has the same viewpoint as I and has written mutliple books on the subject; Keeping the Love You Find, Getting the Love You Want, Making Marriage Simple, Receiving Love, The Happy Couples Secret.
The challenge as I see it, having analyzed the subject to death, of course, is that always and forever, we are viewing people and the world through the filter of our unconscious emotional programming. No matter what you have learned
about yourself and the world, you can't use simple intellect to effect change. You are always making choices from your unconscious emotional programming, what Hendrix refers to as "the hidden landmines we bring to our
In his book, Keeping the Love You Find, Hendrix breaks down the developmental phases each child goes through in their growth, discussing what they needed to experience in each phase and what happens when they don't experience
what they needed.
When reviewing this material, it quickly becomes apparent that most people did not get all of their needs met at some point in their development. According to Hendrix, they will continue to pursue that need in the subsequent
phases of development and if still not met, will pursue it through their lives in their relationships.
Interestingly, the challenge becomes: When we reach adulthood, we can no longer look to our parents to fill our developmental needs, even if they are suddenly inclined to give. Perhaps this is part of the human dilemma (the
challenges we all face because we are human.) We tend to then go out into the world of adults looking for another adult to fill our unmet need(s). Given the high percentage of adults whose original developmental needs weren't met,
that means there are millions of adults seeking fulfillment from other adults doing the same thing. Kinda sounds like a recipe for disaster. Or, being set up for failure. Because it is really hard to meet the needs of another person when
your own were left unfulfilled. Now we have a bunch of incomplete adults out in the world trying to complete themselves through others. And we wonder why there are so many divorces, over 1 million every year in the US alone. The
current percentage of single people is 45.2%.