Why Unconditional Love Is A Bad Idea

A lot of us have a dream of receiving – and giving – unconditional love. But the truth is, while unconditional love is a wonderful aspiration for a parent, and a great practice for a guru who sits on a mountaintops and radiates blessings down to people whom s/he rarely actually sees, it’s just not realistic – or even emotionally healthy! – for two adults in an intimate relationship.

Unconditional love says “I love you no matter who you are and what you do.” But healthy intimate relationships involve two people agreeing to show up in emotionally responsible ways, and co-creating something that works for both of them. So, conditions are necessary. Part of the purpose of the conscious dating process is to screen IN women who meet your conditions, and screen OUT those who don’t – so you can find someone with whom it really makes sense (on the head level, as well as heart and body), to co-create a life. It’s not just about attraction, chemistry and opening your heart (unless you want to get that heart broken.) It needs to be a more conscious process.

For instance, if you’re a mom already, or deeply want to have children, one of your necessary conditions is most likely a partner who also genuinely wants to be involved in raising kids. If you’re a messy introvert who needs her own space and likes to live out in the country (whoops, that sounds like me!), then you need to find someone for whom that kind of life really fits – not someone who will bend herself into a pretzel trying to make it work for her, or trying to change you.

Of course, once you actually find a compatible partner, love does sometimes involve stretching your heart so it can open bigger and wider. But just as with physical exercise, there are some kinds of stretches that are beneficial, and other kinds that will cause damage. A lot of us do the wrong kind of stretching, get hurt, and then get discouraged and disillusioned about love. That’s kind of like going to the gym, crushing yourself under some too-heavy weights, and then deciding to never exercise again! This is why we’re on the Conscious Dating bandwagon. It’s all about dating and loving wisely.

So how do you know who can really meet your “conditions” (and how do you know that your conditions are the right ones, and are both realistic and compassionate?)

How do you have conscious dating conversations that will let you share what’s true about yourself and your needs, and find out what’s true for someone else?

How do you even ask someone out to begin with – and make clear whether it’s a “date date” or a “friend date” or something in between?

What do you do if you’re dating someone and she gets scared and pulls away? Or you get scared and pull away?

How can you date long-distance without falling into unrealistic fantasies that are bound to collapse when the two of you spend more time together in person?

We’d love to help you gain the skills you need to date consciously.

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