In every partnership, there are needs that are fundamental to being together. They illustrate how the partners show themselves from each other – or hide them.

First of all, the power: Power can be a very beautiful thing. The partner conveys his competence by showing his strength. Those who show strength in a partnership offer protection to the other. However, if you appear too forceful, you can also intimidate the other person and come across as aggressive. The other person must also be able to endure strength. And who doesn’t show strength? Who had to hide or conceal or suppress his power? How does he affect the other? His partner? He seems weak, vulnerable, soft. How does your partner cope with this?

Hold – that means to give support as well as to be allowed to seek support. It is a basic need that works both ways. If you like to give support, are you also capable of looking for support? Am I, as a partner, willing to give my partner support in every situation? Are there limits? What happens to my partner if I’m just looking for support? Can a relationship endure that? How do they both show themselves to each other when they give support or are looking for support? Is the communication explicit or hidden?

Neediness: Imagine a child, a baby. It is completely dependent on the brood care of its parents. It is fundamental and as needy as possible. It needs nourishment, affection, care, attention, tenderness. A baby shows this neediness in the most brutal way possible – because it has no other chance to think. By crying, screaming, by joy, by smiling. But how do we adults show our neediness? How do we show our husbands and wives that we are in need, that we need closeness, care, attention? How clear or ambiguous are the signals I am sending? Or do I suppress it because I equate it with weakness – and must not be weakness?

But how do I express my need for closeness and tenderness ? Am I waiting for my partner to guess them? I show offensively when I feel like tenderness and closeness. Or am I more of the type who has trouble allowing closeness? Then how do I reject my partner? Or do I let it get the better of me? Was closeness and tenderness taboo in my own family, or did I get enough tenderness as a child?

Photo: Unsplash/Josh Felise

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