What’s an ‘Inner Partner?’

Here’s a Meditation I created for a client who uses ‘she/her’ pronouns.

Getting to know my ‘Inner Partner’

It’s a terrific way to start to become familiar with Heart Rhythm Meditation and the Chakras so I thought I’d share it here.

I wanted to caution folks about my use of the term, ‘Inner Partner.’  It’s a phrase that came to me, not from Urban Dictionary, but from my life experience.

In my teens, I started experiencing the delicious sensation of falling in love.  I remember at age 18, my first serious college boyfriend took me out to dinner.  Glimpsing my own face in the bathroom mirror of a fancy restaurant I was shocked at what I saw. I saw my own face, and it felt jarring. I didn’t look right at all. I didn’t have his strong nose, or big brown eyes!

Who is that? What am I looking at? That’s not what I am used to seeing! That isn’t the face burned into my retinas!

I was quite upset for a long moment, until I remembered myself.  Then it hit me how deeply I forget my very self when I fall in love.  At that point I made a promise to myself  to stay aware of my own tendency to forget myself when I got into relationships  and I vowed to someday be able to experience being in love with both My Beloved and Myself  at the same time.

I was able to learn better and better how to ‘act as if’ I loved both at the same time over the next 3 decades, with more success at times, and less success at others. Becoming a mother made loving several people at once, including myself even more difficult.  It was so tempting to become swept away be the deliciousness of the small, sweet-smelling, adorable human in my care and to forget myself entirely and profoundly.  And that even felt like was a relief.

Over the years, with the help of Meditation, I started to do deeper in my love for myself than acting ‘as if.’  Having actual experiences was much easier than intellectually holding on to the practice as an ideal.  At the same time, my explorations of the ideas and customs of Polyamory helped me learn to love other people with a deep appreciation that they existed in their own right, outside of what I wanted from them.  Suddenly I realized that the I had to treat myself from two different perspectives.

In the language of Polyamory, there were parts of me that were my girlfriend’s lover, and parts of me that were my girlfriend’s metamore. Just like my girlfriend’s boyfriend had to check with his wife before making plans with her, I had to check with myself before making plans. So I named the part of me that I was checking with my ‘Inner Partner.’  Jokingly, I referred to my Inner Partner as my wife. Soon it became a sweet little joke between us. ‘Is that okay with Wifey?’ she would ask.

For example:

“Oh my Goodness, driving an hour to see you right now dear sounds delicious! I really want to do that, but let me check with my Inner Partner and see how all of me feels about that idea…

Opps, my ‘wife’ says that I promised her to get a good night sleep tonight, because I’ve been really burning the candle at both ends to much lately and I want to be my best in the morning. Let’s make plans for another day.”

That’s when I realized that I could love myself and at least one other person passionately, and honor both of my needs and their needs, at the same time. I realized that I don’t need to fill everyone’s needs all the time, I just need to be respectful of everyone’s wants and needs. The phrase I had said and heard at so many discussion groups: ‘I’m solo poly, I am my own primary relationship’ suddenly became much more real.  And I realized that these were ideas that needed to spread back into Monogamous Culture, because I’d needed them since my teenage years. Needed them badly.

It’s not a terrible thing to have enough sensitivity to experience the pull to put other people’s needs first.   It’s delicious and wonderful. It feels wonderful. It’s part of some of our natures to varying degrees. And it’s true that some of us act this way because of unhealed heart wounds from the past. No matter the reason, for some of us, it’s too easy to become unbalanced in this way. Luckily tools are available to restore that balance. If you want to have your cake and eat it too, set your intention to take your relationship with your Inner Partner to the next level. A good step is using the meditation above.

In what ways have you come to treat your Inner Partner with respect and love? Is it different for you is some way? Please leave a comment below.

Enter your email in our comment section to receive a free PDF with more information about falling in love with your Inner Partner. You might even win a free 1 to 1 coaching session.

 

 

 

Why are dudes on Cupid so terrible at handling rejection?

 

I am a big fan of everyone being able to use their words and say no without getting shit for it. But let’s face it, most of us don’t handle disappointment well, and at times we give each other a lot of shit when we don’t get what we want. Part of being an Adult is finding a way to handle rejection without creating more pain and drama.   Cuddle Parties are great ways to practice saying and hearing ‘No’s.

The very lovely and gentle Janet Trevino posted this recently.

Because I told a man, no, via text, I got this response, “Ok your fat and lame inbed probably.” This is for real.

Sigh. Delete.

That brought back memories. I got a handful of those kinds of response last year during my exploration of OKCupid. Some of my girlfriends won’t use online dating because they find this so unpleasant. It is unpleasant, but I think that’s unfortunate, since Cupid has been very very good to me overall.  And fellows wonder why there is such a gender imbalance on OKC.

Once I saw that it was a pattern, it helped me breath through the pain of it. I trained myself to say, to myself, and sometimes even allowed myself to type – Thank you for taking care of yourself.  Because this response is essentially an attempt to change the timeline so the Dude could say ‘No’ first, before my no. Since this is impossible and a ritual, it has to have that nastiness with it to try and make an unpowerful position feel powerful. Then I’d hit block and delete the conversation. Sometimes I’d call a friend to vent a bit, and then we’d take a moment to feel gratitude that this unfortunate fellow had screened himself out of my life. NEXT!

It is a golden opportunity to see the how the societal pressure on AMABs interacting with male biology. As a boy in our society, there are only two positions possible – I Win-You Loose or You Win – I Lose. In that mentality, a ‘no’ means ‘I loose.’ And loosing feels very very bad, physically as well as emotionally, if you have been trained since birth that losing is anathema to your very essence..

The sour grapes ritual is an attempt to neutralize the distress over being in the ‘I lose’ position. Men do not act this way, only boys, but they still feel the pain of loosing very deeply. Some boys grow up themselves in time, some learn from women, some are lucky enough to have strong male role models who make sure that they grow into men.

Weirdly enough, I can see beauty in this reaction, at least for someone who is rightfully in the ‘boy’ stage of development. A girl acting in this way in the social arena is toast. That that was me, plenty of times.  I’m a bit wistful that as a girl, I didn’t grow up on playgrounds where there was space for an affectionate version of this sort of name calling interaction.

I did get to practice this at home with my brothers –
“You smell bad”
“Well you are covered with sweat.”
“Well, at lease I have sweat, you don’t even have armpits. You are pitless.”
And on and on, stranger and stranger. I have a lot of fond memories of that, and we blew off a lot of steam. There were rules – one couldn’t mention any of the teasing partner’s actual defects or flaws. That was going too far and could get us in big trouble with mom.

What do you think? What might you like to say back if you weren’t worried about feeding the trolls?

I wanna know! Please comment below.

To be entered in the contest for a free 20 minute based on your current OKCupid profile, leave a contact form message with the best way to contact you and the phrase: CUPID CONTEST.

 

Wants, Needs and Weeds

Hello Dear Ones,

I recently got this question:

“I’m a 53 year old heterosexual female. I  pride myself on not needing any man, any person, really. I provide financially and emotionally for myself and my son.  But my boyfriend doesn’t know how to be with me, because he’s used to feeling good about himself by being needed by a woman. I have run into this before so many times! What can I do?”

– ‘Needless in Nevada’

As you know, Readers,  I’ve been all about discovering my wants and needs these last few years.  One thing that always confuses me is the idea of needs. There are some things I need to survive and other things I can’t thrive without, but I can certainly live without.  I’m going to call these wants that are necessary to thrive ‘weeds.’  I got the term by taking the W from wants and the N from needs. I want to thrive the way a weed grows – exuberantly! I want to be hearty and have a wide variety of healthy growing conditions, in narrow cracks and on wide slopes.

So I need air, and water and healthy food and exercise to survive. I need to have work that is valued in our society and pays well enough.  But to thrive I need a wide variety of kinds of social interactions.

I weed to interact with people who get me.

I weed to interact with people who are willing to show me their world.

I weed to interact with people who can show me that they treasure my company.

That’s a lot of weeds!

So Needless and I had a conversation about the difference between Needs and Weeds. We did a meditation about how on one hand being a woman in this world who can take care of her needs is strong and beautiful. But there is another hand, there already exists a future version of herself that is deeply in touch with her wants, need and her weeds.  I believe that if Needless can tune into the places where she weeds her boyfriend, that he will find a way to resonate with that inner music, and find a way to feel valued and to reflect his appreciation back to her.

What do you think? Leave a comment about your Wants, Needs, and Weeds in the comments section below. Please share this post on Twitter or Facebook.

Ask me a new question, or be added to my mailing list,  using the contact form. You will receive a link and a password to unlock a worksheet to create your own meditation on Wants, Needs, and Weeds. One lucky winner will who completes the contact form will even win a free 20 minute meditation session over Skype with me!

Peace,

Leora

Should I try and work things out with my Ex? Take a 3 month break before you do, please.

Here’s How:

So, you started dating someone and it was wonderful, and you fell in love, which was wonderful too, but then you started to notice that things were going very poorly a lot of the time, and so you broke up or got broken up with, but you still really care about each other. You end up arguing or having hurt feelings whenever you get together, and yet, you can’t stop thinking about this other person.

Are you starting to feel like a ping pong ball?

Or maybe it’s pretty obvious that this person isn’t a good fit. But you hate being lonely and something feels better than the prospect of being alone, and no one else seems to want to spend time with you.  Pathetic I know, but many of us have been there.

And it’s not surprising that many of us have been there. As Reid Mihalko and Cathy Vartuli point out in this video, for thousands of years, being alone was synonymous with mortal danger for human beings. People who could manage to stick around with other people had more offspring that grew to adulthood. So our bodies feel really bad when the one person that we used to spend most of our time with isn’t around any more, and our minds can get filled with obsessive thoughts. That isn’t a sign that we are broken, it’s a sign that we are human.

If you have ever watched a baby go through separation anxiety, you know how that baby feels. It’s now thought that this isn’t an accident either, that our adult love attachment system is just our baby survival mechanism with a little frosting of sex on top. That explains a lot, doesn’t it.

But an explanation without a plan doesn’t get us very far, does it? Please read on.

With me it usually shows up with knowing that I can’t think clearly when the person is around, and I can’t decide if I want them in my life or not. I am low on creative ability to imagine what I might like to do with this person.  I want to be ‘off the hook’ for all the promises, spoken and unspoken that I have made and press the reset button.

People have looked at me amazed that I don’t know what I want. I don’t think that any of us know what we want under those conditions.  The only difference is that I am skeptical of the answers my mind feeds me, like giving a toddler cookies as a bribe to be still, and most of us just take the cookie and suck on that.  Give yourself the gift of time. Don’t make the other person into a monster in your mind. Just let them know that things aren’t going well, that you are going to take 3 months off to remember who you are, what you like, what you need and breath. Take their phone number out of your contact list, defriend them on Facebook, write a date in your calendar 3 months in the future when it’s okay to meet for coffee and see how they look with new eyes. Tell your friends that you have decided not to talk or think about this person for 3 months, so that they have your permission to interrupt your rudely when the topic of conversation turn back to that creeky subject.

You may not be able to control your thoughts, but you can regain control as many times as you need to.

Peace,

Leora

 

 

Meditation: Your Heart’s – Eye Perspective

Here’s a link to a 20 minute Heart Rhythm Meditation about shifting from your Mind’s Eye perspective into a deeper level of knowing that I call the Heart’s Eye Perspective. Please leave comments below.

You can learn more about Heart Rhythm Meditation at IamHeart.org, or for personalized instruction, send me a note through the contact form.

 

Should I try and work things out with my Ex?

I’ve been dating for the last 2 and a half years after being in an exclusive long term relationship. As you can guess, it was really hard for me to know what I wanted in a dating partner after 20 years out of the dating field. I needed to get to know myself, and spending time with other people gives me a lot more information about my wants and needs than watching Xena Warrior Princess on Netflix.

So I fell in love with a handful of people, and sometimes we decided to hang out together and see how that went. And sometimes it went well. Sometimes it went hella poorly. Sometime I just didn’t know –  that felt worst of all.

I want to talk about those connections that cause so much pain and confusion, where one simply doesn’t know.  In 2008 the idea was to ask the other person what they wanted me to be so I could shape myself into that, as in the lyrics in song linked above. Nowadays my ideal is Self Expression, so I am taking the responsibility for figuring out what I am, then communicating that, then waiting for the chips fall where they may. Ouch!

How do I do it?
I think in terms of relationship transition instead of breaking up.  Of course polyamory makes this easier. In the Binary world of ‘You, over there, come fill most of my needs and let me try and fail at filling most of your needs!’ there was a super high price for picking ‘the right one.’  In my current lifestyle of Dating Partnerships, there is more room to experiment with questions of –

How often do I want to see you?

What kinds of activities work for us to do together?

What kinds of environments do I want to spend time with you in?

What kinds of agreements do I need to make with you

  • for the time we spend together?
  • for the time we spend apart?

What agreements or habits used to be true that aren’t true now?

What little practices did you and I used to do to reassure each other of our caring for each other? Which do I want to continue? Which do I want to discontinue?

Do I need us to change our schedule, or our way of negotiating time together?

Please leave comments below. I’d love to hear what kinds of changes you need when you are transitioning your relationships.

I hope you found this post useful, please stay tuned for my next post – Suggested personal policies for Relationship Transitions and Break ups