Updated: Oct 9, 2020

Mother, daughter, father, son, husband, wife, sister, brother, aunt, uncle, cousin, nephew, niece, grandfather, grandmother. In-laws! Step-! Half-!

So many labels we apply to those in our family. And they come attached with a shitton of story, don't they?

And they come with...... expectations.

I feel like there should be the sound of thunder or something inserted here. Like a dun dun dunnnnnn.

(yes, those pesky expectation dudes again, see previous post: "ALL IN" USUALLY BACKFIRES).

What if you were to remove the label of your spouse: Husband/Wife/Life partner?

What if he or she was just their name, not your husband or wife?

Give that a moment or two. Just think of him or her as their given name.

Picture them in your mind's eye as that person with that name.

Does that feel different?

Can you see how you might appreciate or be more patient and understanding with that person when you take away what they 'represent' in your life? The expectations of a spouse is removed - whatever those expectations are...they are unique to you and your story.

With the removal of the expectations, you then become a human being interacting with just another human being.

With the removal of expectations, you allow space for who they REALLY are to come in and be in focus (and same goes for you, too).

You get to see them as "Bob" or "Betty" (insert significant other's real name here!).

You see their own story, their own history, their own struggles - not just how they relate to you.

I know it seems like something we automatically do....but....we don't.

When we label someone with what they represent in our life, we kinda sorta (not on purpose) forg