When we live as a couple, we learn to tolerate many things. We adapt to each other's habits to try to find the balance of cohabitation, so that each one has the freedom to develop as an individual while building a reciprocal relationship.
Curiously, it is this same flexibility, or rather the lack of it, that breaks up most relationships. This factor precedes the lack of regularity in sexual relationships, monotony, different tastes or even betrayals and infidelities.
This is what the couple psychologist Maria Baratta explains in the magazine Psychology Today. The biggest problem presented by couples in crisis who come for counseling is rigidity or inflexibility. Communication is said to be the key to successful relationships, and rigidity occurs when one or both parties stop listening and empathizing. Inflexibility prevents a relationship from moving forward and evolving.
Rigidity prevents progress
Maria Baratta explains that rigidity can be detrimental to all aspects of a couple's life. This rigidity appears when one is not able to see the other's point of view, when one does not take the other's point of view into consideration and when one does not act in a communicative way. In relationships, as in other aspects of life, we must be able to understand the opinions of others, even if they are different from our own, “to consider that the point of view of the other, although different from ours, is valid and deserves reflection,” he explains.
In many cases, there is no choice but to end the relationship.
We all have different opinions and perspectives, and it is up to us to be tolerant and make concessions for coexistence. If there is rigidity in a relationship, it is more difficult, if not impossible, to reach a healthy compromise. What makes the difference in a relationship is the ability to “listen and understand each other, recognizing that the other's problems are important to us as well.
As Maria Baratta explains, this rigidity “can be the result of personality disorders, mental health issues, addiction disorders, attachment styles, or simply character. But sometimes rigidity can be a stance, a decision not to give in or to give in on an issue.” And often the solution, when rigidity is entrenched, is to end the relationship, in search of personal well-being and an “open, accepting and caring” person.
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