I was in a tit for tat relationship one time, and the bad news is that this relationship is still going on. I have no choice in the matter, for reasons I won’t go into here. But, that tit for tat relationship has definitely left me with PTSD, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Yet, there was a lesson in the tit for tat relationship. It was probably a dynamic that I had or needed to work through because of my mother.

But of course, that same tit for tat leaves you feeling really defensive when anybody comes at you with criticism or a suggestion.  It’s very hard to sometimes take a step back and realize that this new person is not the old person.

And that’s the problem with dating.

If you’ve been with somebody where you’ve been put on the defense for so long, the minute a new person comes in and they put you on the defense, they might do it from an open, loving space.

A space that has absolutely pure love.  

But, because you’re so conditioned to battle and so conditioned to fight, you immediately react that way.  Especially when you’ve been with somebody who has criticized you or has frustrated you.

Because those feelings come back because no matter what we do in our process of healing between one relationship and the next. When we have the next relationship, we don’t realize that we’re still battling things from the past – things that we have no yet healed from.

The ultimate illusion is spending time alone.

We can truly heal things when we’re alone, but we also forget about what really bothered us and triggered us in that relationship. We forget about that dynamic that formed because we’re no longer in a relationship.

So, it’s easy not to be in a battle mode anymore.

And then the new person comes in and they love you to death and they’re really amazing… and all of the sudden you’re battling with them over little things.

Little things that shouldn’t be battled about.

They’re not that old person at all.

Yet, we tend to punish each other non-stop for what the old person did.

And we don’t even do it consciously, until you spend one night up all night long, sleepless, thinking about it, feeling, meditating on it, and realizing why we do this.

When someone comes at you with words, they’re just words.

When someone comes at you with those words, instead of reacting, think:

Does this person love me? 

Are they here to cause a fight?

Are they just conveying how they feel?

Before you react, take five deep breaths.

Before you battle, let it sit. Re-read it a few times. Calm the fuck down.

Could be something with your children as well. Take a time out. Give yourself a time out before you overreact.

Because once you overreact, the other person is not going to be able to listen to you at all. They’re not going to hear the words that they need to hear coming from your mouth.

Because if you can’t talk to somebody from a place of love, regardless of what they did or what they said, then no conversation is ever going to manifest in a way it should.

I am guilty of this. You can’t help it. It’s human nature when you’ve been involved with somebody who you battled for so long, and it’s human nature to think that everybody is after you.

Until you realize that they’re not. So, come from a place of love. Don’t react right away. Take the time out.

Trust me. I’ve fucked up royally this way.  And the anxiety that I feel through my body and through my soul, I don’t want anybody else to feel.