Healthy Dating Relationships vs. The Mr./Ms. Right Myth
There is a mythical person in every single person’s life called, “Mr. Right or Ms. Right” He is a dashing, handsome knight, riding to rescue her on his powerful white horse. He will arrive to whisk her away from the awful place called single-town and make all her problems go away. Sadly, she may always seem to jump on the wrong horse and get dumped back in single-town again. For the single guy, Ms. Right is physically and emotionally perfect like one of the Disney Princesses with magical powers to make him feel like a King. Believing in this imaginary fairytale often prevents singles from finding real love.
Many singles look for a partner as a way to fix their life. They foolishly believe that if only they were married, then everything would be great. As if the man or woman has some magic power to erase all of their insecurities, baggage and sadness, and he/she would be able to lift them up to a higher realm of being.
I used to believe that too. What I discovered was that this story about romance created a huge block from allowing true love into my life. I had my list of Mr. Perfect and compared every man to my must-have file. I watched romantic movies in awe waiting for that same amazing feeling of blissful union and happily-ever-after. When a man who seemed “good on paper” came into my life, I quickly found ways to find fault with him and resisted his affectionate advances. I would justify that I just didn’t have that loving feeling, he wasn’t “the one” and let him go.
I never noticed until later that I would only experience that strong desire with the bad guys, the ones I could not have. When a Mr. Wrong would enter my life, I disregarded my list and thought…well, this must be it because I have this amazing emotional reaction when I am around him. I saw him as my Knight and, if only he would love me back, then all my problems would be solved – I would be lovable. When they rejected me, I would feel worse about myself and my faith in finding Mr. Right would continue to wither away.
This search for external recognition started from the early days of life, when babies are helpless and needed the support of others to survive. Many men and women who were closed off emotionally by a parent often look for evidence of love in their partners. Since being shut down was a pattern in their life, they often feel that “love feeling” with unattainable partners because it was familiar. The reaction was not based out of true connection but out of desperation and fear. They become stuck in the chain reaction that was started a long time ago and irrationally label it as love. Clinging to old relationships that aren’t working or that are destructive based on the illusion of love, they ignore the many potential partners who are good to them.
You will notice that the greatest love stories in books or in the movies are the ones where the couple can never be together because of social station, marriage or early death. The concept of having the unattainable gets mixed up with the mythical notion of a Mr. Right. You may cling on to a hopeless romantic situation because you think he’s the one and block any other suitor from entering your heart.
I remember a friend of mine told me once that I would meet my man when I finally let go of the dream. She was spot on. In reality, your Mr./Ms. Right is someone who loves and respects you, but the catch is that you have to give yourself that approval first. You don’t want to meet someone you have fix and neither does your partner. A healthy relationship isn’t filled with drama and tragedy but real intimacy and connection that feels like a quiet force between the two of you instead of a hurricane.
I am not saying that great romantic love in life is not possible. The real thing is quite different than what is portrayed in the media. When you discover how awesome you are, any person that recognizes your greatness is the right one for you. No horse, no shining armor, just a real person (just like you) who wants to share the wonderful experience of life.