A man told me in therapy once that he was bad because he was too good. He has a bad habit of doing too much in a relationship. Consequently, his relationships end because the women feel smothered and eventually pull away.
What does he do that ultimately causes every relationship to terminate? Here’s a partial list he made for me entitled “How to Smother.”
• Make sure you hug her the minute you see her.
• No matter what she’s doing, come up behind her and rub her back.
• When she’s fixing dinner or doing a project around the house, offer to do it for her.
• Just before you leave from home, call her to say good morning. When you leave for lunch, call and tell her where you’re going When you leave work at night, check to see if she wants to get together even though you know she planned to be with her sister that evening.
• Offer to pick up lumber to fix her deck and buy shrubs for the front of her house.
• Tell her you forgive her for being late even before she apologizes.
• Be available anytime she wants to get together and always drop your plans.
• Arrange to bring all your bills and paper work to her house so you can both work in the same room.
• Encourage her to pursue exercising and reading while you clean her house.
• Keep hanging around her house even though she has a date with her girlfriends hoping they’ll invite you to go to dinner with them.
• While she’s using the bathroom, make the bed and lay out her clothes. Press her skirt and blouse if it’s wrinkled.
• Get up when eating to get all the unexpected little extras during the meal.
• Insist that she choose the restaurant, movie or activity of her liking.
If this is you, stop. Remember, if a relationship is going to make it, one essential ingredient is equity between the partners; that is, a give and take in the relationship.
Check out Doris’ latest books, “The Boy Whose Idea Could Feed the World,” “The Parent Teacher Discussion Guide,“ and “Thin Becomes You” at Doris’ web page: http://www.doriswildhelmering.com.
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