Do you want a story book romantic relationship? Or do you want a real relationship? A reAlationship?
Watching one of my favorite TV reality shows, Tough Love Miami, I was reminded of something my favorite author (Dr. Henry Cloud) taught in a book. There was a lady on the show who the host appropriately nicknamed Ms. Delusional. This young woman was having trouble securing a romantic relationship, and the host believed the reason was because she was delusional in thinking that if she made a vision board of all the lovely characteristics that she wanted in man, that the Law of Attraction would draw it to her. A vision board is a suggestion from Rhonda Byrne’s book called “The Secret”. Her book teaches of “The Law of Attraction”. The law of attraction teaches that whatever you think of constantly and consistently, it will be drawn to you from the universe. It’s a board that you glue all of your desires onto so that you can view it often and “draw” your desires to you. So Ms. Delusional would look through magazines and cut out words and pictures of what she wanted in a spouse so that in time, her dream guy would come.
The show showed a clip of her vision board, and one thing was certain, her vision was not real life. It was not reality. It was something fantasy. She was not sure that her dream guy actually existed, but because she had heard Rhonda Byrne put it in her book she decided to give it a try. But was she after a REALATIONSHIP? Or just a fake relationship?
I learned something a few weeks ago that was intriguing. It was this: “The truth is what will happen. Reality is what will happen to you. A lie will never happen.” The fake things we conjure up in our brains are not what will really happen to us. But what will happen to us is the TRUTH. But instead of expecting and wanting the truth to happen to her, Ms. Delusional would rather hope in a lie happening to her when it is common knowledge that no lie has ever occurred!
Someone asked me on my formspring.me web account if there was a difference between positive thinking and faith. I said there was absolutely a difference. Positive thinking is simply a human being telling themselves that something that is not reality, is true when it is not true. But faith is a human being believing that something they cannot see (right now) is true or real simply because God said it is real and because God does not lie.
That is what separates reAlationships from fantasy relationships. I used to seek after a fake relationship. Too much Lifetime Movie Network caused me to think that an ideal, perfect person was out there waiting for me. (But even if this ideal, perfect person was out there, why would he be interested in dating me of all people?!) But Dr. Henry Cloud helped me to see that the only person I can date is a real person. And the only worthwhile relationship is a REAL relationship (a reAlationship). Who would want a fake relationship? Would you want a fake job? A fantasy friendship?
Actually, even now there are couples that are comprised of two individuals who are feigning perfection. And I assure you that they are not happy. Even the best thespians and actors would be unhappy if they had to act on and off the set 100% of the time. At some point, you oughta want to be yourself and you oughta wanna be loved for being yourself. But you can’t be loved for being yourself if all your spouse is allowed to see is the fake, acting, “perfect” you.
I once dated a guy with whom I revealed one of my biggest fears at that time. That fear was that once people REALLY knew who I was, that they would not love me. And he said something SO sweet. He said, “Once people really get you know you, they won’t be able to help BUT to love you.” That meant so much to me. Here was this guy telling me that once people got to know the REAL me, there would be nothing but a lovable Mistye left. At the core of Mistye once you remove all the layers, is going to be a REAL person who you can’t help but to love. Isn’t that just awesome?
Dr. Henry Cloud said that real relationships are what are enjoyable in life. You can only date and love a real person. You cannot truly love something that does not exist. I cannot love Santa, the Tooth Fairy, and the Easter Bunny because neither of them exist. So as long as you want a non-existent perfect being that you fabricated in your delusional brain, you will never have someone to love. You can make your vision board all you want, but that does not mean the universe will present to you something that does not exist. You OUGHT to want someone real.
Take me for example. I’m 27 years old. I’ve prayed to God for a spouse with whom I can have a happy relationship. If I began to construct a vision board tonight with all his dreamy characteristics, it would be a waste of time. For starters, it would be in vain because I’d want the man to be around the same age I am. So that would mean that he’s already got 26+ years of stuff in him that is likely not on my vision board. 26+ years of imperfection and flaws that he’s been storing up before my vision board came to be. God can’t make a person who’s been alive for 25 years exactly what YOU want them to be! And why would He? Would it be fair if you heard that five men had been fixing a vision board with your photo on it and that they had also been praying for God to change who you were to make them happy? God will not do it. He makes people change for the BETTER, but He does not make people change for you!
So I’ve stopped all my lofty visions for a perfect man and a perfect relationship. And I’ve decided that if I ever plan on settling down permanently, then I need to settle for a REALationship and to stop dreaming of a fake one. Real love will only be found in a REALATIONSHIP.