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Back in my college days, I remember this classmate who once confidently declared, “I can
live with any kind of woman.”

And he dated as many girls as he could set his eyes on.

We,the timid boys,only envied his attitude.

Girls can be yappy about your small secrets,and we kept well away from those we considered untrustworthy with our secrets!

Back to him,his argument was that if you know your strengths and weaknesses, (which presumably he did) you can co-exist with any personality type.

I couldn’t say as much about myself!

I do not know whether that belief still holds with the experience of marriage, but I concur with him
on one point: That the key to a happy relationship is for you to know who you are.

Knowing who you are is a three-phase process comprising self-awareness, acceptance, and the
willingness to act.

In my buddhist meditation experience, and from the testimonies of many people, relationships fail
because people refuse to audit themselves.

Unlike my friend who believed he had come to terms with who he was, dealing with self is a constant process because we are constantly affected by changes in
and around us.

It might be possible to keep things to yourself if you are single, but as many will attest,relationships reach deep within to dig out some of
our best kept secrets.

Choosing not to confront who we are is, therefore courting unhappy relationships.

One characteristic of such individuals is that whenever some of the
hidden attributes are forced out, they take it out on their partners or friends, either by being abusive or blaming them for every small problem.

Further, they are extremely defensive and unwilling to have a structured way of resolving problems in the relationship.

The point here is this:
The real you will be revealed once you get into any kind of
relationship,either as friends or lovers and the sooner you accept and deal with it, the better for you and for your relationship.

One major reason for refusing to confront who we are is that people are usually scared of what they
will find.

An important question that buddhist meditation teachers
ask people who are seeking to know themselves better is, “Are you sure you really want to know
who you are?”

For example, when you discover that
you are deeply scared of rejection, what will you do with that information?

Besides the fear of knowing, people adopt the“better the devil I know than the angel I don’t” attitude because they do not want to take
responsibility for making needed changes in their lives.

A good example regards people who know that they are cruel to their partners.

That might be due to their upbringing, but as they
grow and get into a relationship, they become aware of it.

However, they are unwilling to accept
and deal with it, choosing instead to wear a façade of toughness that ends up destroying both themselves and their relationships.

Let me declare this with boldness — happiness in relationships is only possible when you are free to
be yourself, free to experiment, to make mistakes,and to recover from them without considering
yourself a failure.

Such freedom comes only through knowing,accepting, and being willing to deal with who you
are.

The very common challenges of bloated egos,insecurity, and possessiveness are all signs of
individuals who are not willing to battle with their demons and to slay them.

Back to my college friend.

With the hindsight of 15 years in marriage, he now acknowledges that he was a tad too confident about being able to successfully co-exist with anyone.

That has, however, not changed his belief in the power of dealing with self as the gateway to successful relationships.

What, however, he has had to accept is that he is only one half of the
relationship.

The other half must also be willing to
do the same for the two to be happy together.

Just some random thoughts that came to my mind….

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