Weekly Wire
Weekly Alibi Very Personal

By Norma Jean

JULY 13, 1998:  The greatest challenge for maintaining positive, growth-oriented relationships is an inner and outer honesty. Questioning my old cronies back East about intimacy as my life rolls north in a moving van, many tell me their tribulations about the thick and thin of the ellusive and perplexing LTR, temptations of infidelity, redundant arguments around money issues, (step) parenting problems, addictions, thwarted expectations, conflicting sex drives. Apparently, not sharing feeling, fears, hopes, dreams and private thoughts with another in intimacy creates phoniness as your mate begins to relate to an "act" and not to you. Inner honesty means trusting your naturally love-ability even when lost in addictive demands. Studying the concept of total honesty as a path to evolving and achieving new levels of peace, one begins to see from a higher perspective that nothing hurts a relationship as much as shades of separateness and isolation.

According to Ken Keyes Jr. in A Conscious Person's Guide to Relationships, "The love that total inner honesty develops is worth whatever pain may be triggered when your honesty hits your partner's embarrassment, jealousy, resentment, fear or anger buttons, or your own." When blathering to friends about what's frustrating about him/her, or using alcohol or anti-depressants to banish the pain of things left unsaid, a relationship's in troubled waters. It always feels better to clear the air, at all costs. Over dinner and martinis at a local Italian joint here in Paterson, N.J., my friend confessed her husband told her in anger that he no longer wanted her sexually. She told him the same. They discussed separating and began to feel real emotion and sadness. Within days, they found themselves in a passionate embrace through their tears, thus melting the ice that's wedged them silently apart for months; they began to speak about everything.

Another woman has taken a month vacation to avoid the sexual demands of her man. Instead of discussing her conflict and asking for what she wants, this woman pours her heart out to friends hoping somehow to resolve the issue away from home. She insists keeping little secrets is best in a relationship. "He'd never understand I just need more men friends," she sighs. "What he doesn't know won't hurt him." Essentially nonthreatening to her husband, even healing to their troubles, her desire to expand her circle of friends causes her to fear his jealously so she remains secretive and deceptive, thus damaging their closeness.

Every one has private separateness, private alienation and private unhappiness. The fastest way to open your life to your partner is to communicate deeper and deeper levels of honesty. Sharing the unthinkable actually allows someone to trust you more. Sharing all the beautiful and brutal thoughts in the face of the pounding each partner endures generated by all of our addictive demands is the single act that holds up an "us" that is almost invincible.

Keyes says, "Working on differences means working on your own emotion-backed demands and not beating on the people around you." The person you chose as a life partner is particularly adept at helping you get in touch with your unconscious programming as I'm sure you've noticed!

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