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At Bonhomie LLC, we provide individual, family, and couples therapy. We provide these therapies surrounding trauma/PTSD, men’s issues, women’s issues, cultural issues, adjustment, divorce/custody/family issues, spiritual concerns, life transitions, and more. While open to working with anyone ages 12 and above of any background, we greatly enjoy working with teenagers followed by young adults. If you feel that your concern or age has not been covered, please contact us to schedule a consultation to discuss your need.

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The Pursuit of Relationships

Throughout life, we spend a significant portion of our lives in the pursuit of love; engaging within a relationship. The pursuit of happiness is almost equivalent to the pursuit of love within our culture. We eat love, sleep love, breath love, and even sell love. Love has been commercialized and used to pull at our heart strings for the purposes of marketing and economic gain. How is this possible? We all intrinsically desire to be loved. We love love.

In our pursuit of love, we go through some portion of the process of dating. There are many phases or stages to dating; and it seems that many of these stages continue to morph over the years. It was a visible token of affection, to dating/courting, to going steady. Today it’s something like talking, to dating, to dating exclusively, to being in a relationship. Let’s not forget the various ‘ships’ that exist these days, such as the infamous situationship. Today’s generations have extended out the process and added an extra step to the dating process. Now there exists talking; a safety zone or buffer of sorts to the dating process. Talking is either the extreme of only communicating with a person you are interested in, to everything that is a part of a committed relationship without the commitment. Either way talking removes accountability and liability in loving interactions.

Why is there a need for the existence of the talking phase? What are we so afraid of that we feel a need to remove or create a barrier for loving interactions with others? Pain. We are afraid of the hurt, rejection and pain that we have ourselves have experienced. Many of us find ourselves in repeat patterns of relationships from the past. If not our own relationships, then those close to us such as our parents. Believe it or not, we find ourselves working out past issues with our mothers and fathers in our pursuit of love. This can be continuing our parent’s pattern of infidelity, seeking out various characteristics of our parents, to searching for the love that a parent did not give us in our childhood.

I came across a post at some point that read something to the effect of: learn about the parents of the person you are dating. Knowing about their parents will teach you a lot about them since the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. I agree with this sentiment given by the post. You can learn a great deal about a person by examining their parents. I challenge us to take things a step further. Why don’t you yourself know how close you fell from the tree? Not how far but how close? Why leave it up to the person that you are dating to do your work for you?

I challenge you to take accountability for you and your own actions in a relationship or partnership. Don’t leave it up to your complement to find out. You do the work and tell them where you are in your own journey. Ask yourself the following: What did my dad/mom do to me? Did they show you that you didn’t matter so now you are not taken into consideration in your relationship? Did they leave you ill-equipped as an adult, making it difficult for you to hold your position in a relationship? Were they the ones that traumatized you for the first time so you now fear love? Be honest with you so that you can be honest with your loved one. Be honest with you so that you can experience a strong and fruitful relationship.

Corletha Norman-Bey

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