An interesting article was posted in our client-only group the other day
I recommend you give it a read, but to summarize the argument… in addition to the classic five love languages defined by Gary Chapman (acts of service, gifts, physical touch, quality time, words of affirmation), the author notes that there is a sixth: distance.
Cutting to the chase — I agree wholeheartedly with her argument.
Space is CRUCIAL in healthy relationships, because it is space that allows individuality.
Unfortunately a lot of relationships ignore this, and are defined by a “merging” of both parties, which is very often co-dependent in nature.
In these relationships, each party defines themselves by meeting the needs of the other. Usually one party (the male) plays the role of savior to the other. It is an energy draining dynamic, even if the savior figure does not realize it.
(FYI – one of the things I work on with multiple clients is breaking this pattern)
Now, are all “merged” relationships unhealthy?
I wouldn’t say that. I know two in real life that are very loving and sweet. The parties never argue and really understand each other — it’s not emotional repression, quite the opposite.
BUT even in these relationships I can see they would benefit from a little more space… because there is no polarity between them. Indeed, hanging out with them, you think of them as “one” — not as distinct people.
And while there is definitely compatibility between the parties that leads to this dynamic… it’s not the only thing going on, because these people tend to date others in the same way. It’s a pattern.
That said, there is no “right or wrong” here — it is a question of balance, which is why I think it fits a good position as a “sixth” love language.
Some relationships really take the meaning of “we are one” literally. Others are highly independent — they may even give each other TOO much space.
For instance, my relationship with my wife definitely fits into the latter category. One of the big things we’ve worked on in the past year is keeping more in contact, doing more with each other. Because when you’re very independent, the risk is growing apart and killing the flow of love — not losing your identity.I love that this is our “edge” to work on though, because I’ve been in co-dependent relationships before… and love the fact that we don’t have to feel guilty or weird about going places or seeing friends.
The question you need to ask yourself is — where do YOU lie on this spectrum?
Stephen Covey is is must-read book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People defined relationships as going through 3 stages: (co)dependent, independent, and interdependent.Interdependent is when you have two individuals working for a common goal. They stay together by CHOICE rather than need.
Anyway, kinda rambling here.
Point is… you should really take stock of your own relationship and how light or heavy the “contact” is.
All women want your attention, but healthy ones will also want space to themselves at times… and you need to stop being paranoid manosphere bros and ALLOW THEM THIS.
Indeed, you should ENCOURAGE it.
Because independence is the ONLY way women can modulate their succubi tendencies. Which as a high-energy, high-value man is a requirement.
One of the biggest “tells” of a healthy woman is that she can spend time away from you.
And if you don’t like this, maybe you’re not so healthy yourself.
Now, can this go into avoidance with some women? No doubt. And that ain’t good.
But we’re speaking generally here.
If you want my nuanced eye on your unique situation…
Well, apply here: www.patstedman.com/application– Pat
PS Have you been in both of these kind of relationships before? Which direction do you need to go in — more space, or less?