Manipulation is the opposite of intimacy

Bell’s book on the spiritual dimensions of romance reminds us that love is the giving away of power. The giving up of control in the relationship. 

He suggests that there is no intimacy without vulnerability and transparency. And that to make our sacred partnerships thrive in the long term, they require a constant surrendering of all the desires within us to manipulate and change and fix the other person. 

I spent several years in a relationship that was the polar opposite of that. Of course, I was the last one to know. But that’s usually how manipulation works. It’s like a surprise party, except it’s not my birthday, there’s no cake and I’m the one footing the bill. 

Good times. 

Turns out, however, that a guy with a compulsive savior complex and a manipulator is the perform shitstorm of wonderful. I didn’t understand at the time that if your partner is telling you that you are the only thing they have to live for, that’s not a compliment, that’s manipulation. 

Because they’re making you responsible for all of their emotions. They’re convincing you to give them more than they are giving you. Like you’re the with the problem. 

It’s a power move. The opposite of intimacy. And it while it might work long enough to convince your naïve boyfriend to front you the money for that shitty townhouse you’ve always wanted, eventually, he’s going to wise up and get the stepping. 

The point is, you’ll never have a healthy relationship with a manipulative person. Codependency isn’t intimacy. 

If the person you love has made it their full time job to drop hints and look victimized and make you feel guilty for being happy, run. 


What is it about you that always draws you into the same kind of relationship?


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Scott Ginsberg

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