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Is True Love Really Possible?

By Tracy Kelley • February 2006  

 

NOTE: This article was written in response to a question in the Discussion Forum (no longer active).

 

After 16 years living with an alcoholic, and after growing up in a dysfunctional home, I had come to the realization that "Real Love" was a Hollywood fantasy. The best we could hope for was someone who had the least number of faults or things  that drove us crazy. Really... I was soooooooo disgusted with the thought of love. My kids were the only ones I felt that unconditional, totally accepting love for, and I still do. But in my 36 years of life (at that point) I had never personally seen 2 adults have that kind of love. I'd mostly seen Codependent love, Obligation love, and Afraid to be alone love... but those were not what I wanted.

I think the Hollywood stories cause us to have unrealistic expectations. I don't think real love ever starts out with that overpowering, instant attraction. That's infatuation. I think a rational adult will meet their future (possible) love for the first time and just think "What a nice guy". You will off course find them physically attractive, because you have to have that chemistry, it can't be faked... but sometimes it's not earth shattering, at least not at first. When I was first getting to know Doug, I wasn't even considering him as a future date, maybe that was a good thing. We were both in that place mentally where we just weren't looking for a relationship, and I think that's what allowed our friendship to grow. We talked about SO many important things, found out who the other person REALLY was, before we ever went out on a "date". At first I thought he was someone who was really smart, kind, thoughtful... just a good man, the kind you'd want on your side if you ever had problems. The more we got to know each other, I found out he was those things and more. The absolutely beautiful thing was, when we finally realized we were developing romantic feelings for each other as well, we already knew each other so well that I KNEW I accepted Doug exactly the way he was, for who he was. There was not ONE thing I wanted to change or didn't really like, or felt I would just have to "put up with". Then when we started actually "dating" I was MOST pleasantly surprised and delighted to find out that the romantic side of the relationship was everything I could have hoped for. It was exciting and romantic, and I had ALL of those feelings I never thought I'd get to experience again... that I had come to believe were a false reality.

I told Doug that at a later date, when I examined my feelings for him to see if they were really what I thought they were. I told him he made me believe in love again. It wasn't easy either ladies, because let me tell you... I had a FORTRESS of walls put up around me. I was determined no one was going to hurt me again. I would have continued in our relationship with some of my walls still up (this was a life long defense mechanism for me) but Doug very kindly would not let me. That was when I knew the depth of love and respect I had for him, when I finally let ALL my walls down, and felt safe. In 7 years time, Doug has never once made me regret letting those walls down, never once given me a reason to lose trust or respect. So NOW I believe in true love, that there can be someone who is perfect for you, if you are in the right place in your own life to "See" them and to see yourself. How can you find a compatible partner if you don't know who you are yet, or don't like or accept yourself yet? You can't. In 7 years together, our feelings have grown even stronger for each other. I've actually found MORE things I like about Doug than I knew, for example his drive to help others, hence the founding of this website.

People say "there are no good men left", I disagree. I don't think I found the last one that was out there. What kind of hope would that leave for my niece and possible future granddaughters? They're out there, the only thing you can do is keep working on yourself so that when you meet them (if you haven't already but just don't know it) you will be the kind of self confident, happy, complete in yourself kind of person that another like minded person would be attracted to. I totally believe that.


Copyright © 2006 By Kelley Training Systems, Inc. All Rights Reserved. This article may be distributed as long as notice is given and the following tag remains intact:

Doug and Tracy Kelley are relationship experts who enjoy an obscenely happy relationship. They also host several other websites including www.EmpoweredRecovery.com for the friends and family of alcoholics, and www.EmpowerTheSpirit.com for personal and professional growth, training, and seminars. Email: doug@dougkelley.com.

 

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