Photo Credit – US Magazine
Reality versus Reality
I am not a big reality show fan, but I have to admit it is brave to put your yourself and your life out there for the world to see, vulnerabilities and all. This makes it that much more interesting for me as I watch the current drama between Lamar Odom and Khloe Kardashian unfold. Will they give love another chance? Should they?
The It Factor
What can I say? Love is weird in this way. There are some people we love unconditionally and we accept them no matter what. They have that it factor for us. The it factor is that emotional, often intangible feeling that pulls two people together. It is that added factor in addition to physical attraction and compatibility, something which cannot be explained. But you know when it exists because when this is present, you are willing to seal the deal.
This is often the most difficult relationship for you to walk away from because you feel a deep sense of connection to the other person. And when others from the outside look at your relationship dynamics, they usually do not understand it. People think the other person may not be the best fit for you, especially if they do not seem as emotionally invested in the relationship as you are.
This begs a question: how far should you be willing to go? Is it always okay to forgive one another in a relationship? What are your forgiveness limits? At what point should you cut ties with someone you love who has hurt you deeply?
In Khloe Khardashian’s new book, Strong Looks Better Naked, she speaks to Lamar: “Before I met you, I felt invisible, and after I felt seen.” If you have ever truly loved someone you can attest to that feeling. Who doesn’t love the feeling that comes from being fully connected to someone? It is such an emotional high.
Watching the person you love light up when you enter a room is an amazing feeling. Being in love with someone who you believe sees, understands, and accepts you for who you are is life affirming. This is the lure of unconditional love.
Of course, I don’t know the intimate dynamics of Khloe and Lamar’s relationship. But from the outsider’s perspective, it looks as though they are experiencing what a normal couple goes through when one person hurts the other with their actions and behaviors.
While there are some extremes in this case, including fame, vast amounts of wealth, access to do whatever they want when they want it, overexposure to the public eye, and the lure of power, they still have to deal with the normal issues of being in a relationship. You may be able to attest to having experienced some of these relationships dynamics yourself: infidelity, money issues, addiction issues, loss of trust.. It’s interesting to watch a world-famous couple navigate their relationship amid all of these challenges.
Ultimately, what Khloe and Lamar decide to do in their relationship is between the two of them. However, there are some lessons we can take away which can be helpful to us too as we work through our own relationship challenges.
What Does Forgiveness Really Mean?
It is imperative to know at what point you should forgive someone. When do you split up, when do you accept them back into your life? Do you forgive them because you feel sorry for them or concerned for their welfare? Should you choose to continually deal with their demons because you love them? Even if this will severely impair your own happiness? Is there a point where you should stop forgiving their mistakes and hurtful choices?
Forgiveness does not mean acceptance of a behavior or a transgression. In fact, forgiveness is not about the other person’s behavior. Forgiveness is about you allowing yourself to accept what someone has done, forgive them for it, and move forward. You forgive the other so that you do not become so emotionally entrenched that you allow the negative situation or action to deplete who you are.
The transgression or unacceptable behavior exhibited by your partner is generally not about you, it’s about them. As much as we may want to love someone because of their inability to love or lack of access to love, we really can’t. Even though we want to move them past their history of pain, mishaps, and bad life experiences, it is not in our power to do so. We have very little control over another person’s past. Only they do.
However, when you forgive, you are letting go of the hurt. This is important in your own healing process. If you have done what you can to help someone and they don’t want your help, your best recourse is to forgive and move on. This is especially important if they are damaging you emotionally, physically, or spiritually.
The bottom line is this: forgiveness is important, but holding on and accepting another’s behavior if it is to your own detriment is not acceptable. Forgive, and move on.
When to Move On
Don’t allow your guilt about someone else’s situation to dictate your own decisions. Do not show an endless willingness to deal with your loved one’s demons just because you love them. If their behavior impairs your happiness and level of contentment, give this relationship space.
When you love someone, even if you think they are the love of your life, you still have to make decisions based on what makes you happy and healthy. This may mean letting a loved one sort out their demons, get right with themselves or self-correct.
This is perhaps the hardest action to take. Sometimes you love someone so much that you want to protect, hold on, and keep them out of harm’s way. This is ineffective, however. Why? Because the other person does not appreciate or value your help. If they refuse to change their course of behavior, you become an enabler. Keeping the relationship means you are prolonging and enabling your loved one’s harmful actions.
If the person you love is causing you pain, hurt, and emotional turmoil, you need to let go. If this person is going down a self-destructive path, they may need to hit rock bottom to get on the right path forward. In these situations, you can forgive them for who they are, but the best thing you can do for you is remove yourself from the situation. This will help you to be in a better place emotionally. It can also prove to be the catalyst that leads your loved one change their destructive behavior.
Control is an Illusion
Khloe states in Strong Looks Better Naked, “The thing is, you can’t control other people, and you can’t control the outcome of situations, and if you think you can, you will soon discover that you are sadly mistaken.”
People come into our lives for a reason, time, or season. Sometimes we do not understand in the moment why they are in our lives. We do not always know why we revisit certain relationships while others are easier to leave behind.
If two people decide to work out their relationship and move past the things which have hurt them, who are we to judge that situation? If it works for them, let’s be happy for them. After all, what ultimately matters in a relationship is whether it works for the two people in the relationship.
I know I will be watching to see what happens to Khloe and Lamar. I wish them both the best.
You are capable of receiving love. There is a relationship that will work for you. Sometimes all you need is a nudge in the right direction. If you are struggling with your current relationship, newly divorced and looking to get back in the dating scene, or single and trying to find the right person for you, maybe I can help. Reach out to me at [email protected], or sign up on my website to receive dating tips and relationship advice. For fast advice, read my book, The Relationship Investigator’s Fast Guide to Successful Dating.