Which celebrity couples have annoying age differences?

Fall in love: this is how you can keep it

by Interview Monika Dittombée
Being in love is just a phase. Couple counselor Florian Klampfer advises you to stick with it - in order to find out more about yourself than about your partner.

Everyone likes to be in love, what's so great about it?

Yes, we literally bathe in this feeling. Surrender to a state in which we do not question what has really to do with the partner or whether we have just fallen in love with love. Some people stay in this feeling for months. Nice - but you live in an illusion, because what is really exciting only begins afterwards.

And that would be?

The differentiation. When you first fall in love, there is no you or me. In the transition phase to love I perceive myself again and begin to perceive my partner as well. Then it becomes clear: Oh, we have different needs!

Sounds like gossip.

Many shy away from this step because it becomes exhausting. Because you would have to look deeper at how to cope with a new level. In the extreme case, this leads to separation at that point. Or the second differentiation follows: What am I looking for in the relationship with you? What did I unconsciously see in you and want to integrate it for me?

Do you initially only see what you want to see in the other?

It's not just an illusion, but it's reduced to what we like to hear from each other. It gets exciting as soon as we recognize things in the other that we reject. There is a hot lead in that.

Which leads where?

It indicates something in us that we do not want to admit. The language alone shows that: You are so lazy. You are sloppy A clear ascription: YOU are ... But if something about the other annoys me beyond measure, it has to do with me, otherwise I wouldn't be so annoyed. For years I haven't understood why lazy people drive me crazy. Until I realized that there was a longing in me to do nothing - I never allowed myself, but projected the lazy part onto others.

How revealing!

But even more: With this knowledge we could manage not to part with our partner because of disturbing character traits. So instead of saying "You are so boring", I ask myself where the boring part is in me that I never want to allow.

Can couples do this mirroring alone or better with a therapist?

Therapists can open a space, encourage people to speak: Which of you do I reject, what do I want to integrate? It remains the couple's responsibility to get involved. In psychology there is the term "heart coherence": the willingness to open the heart and let in everything that I reject in the partner. That does not mean that I have to find all his quirks good. Rather, I look at them Quirks: Which of these triggers something?

What if you realize that you already know the annoying quality of ex-loved ones?

Perhaps this is an invitation to ask yourself the following questions: Which of my personality is sacred to me? What am I no longer putting up for sale? Then you can consider whether you want to invite your new partner as a Zen master to try it out every day. Whether that is enough to shape a relationship is then a completely different question.

With the view you could almost lose the joy of being in love ...

But not! Imagine receiving a package that you did not order. But your name is on it, and the postman looks charming and personable. Do you accept the package?

I think so.

The lessons in life are similar - they often come in unexpected forms. The nice postman helps us to get involved in things that we don't feel like doing. He becomes a kind of development worker at this point. His friendliness helps us to accept even unpleasant messages.

What about those who fall in love very often and quickly?

With this variant you can ask yourself: Am I afraid of new experiences? Do I want to put my life energy into an eternal experimental stage?

I summarize: being in love is an illusion and hopefully only a phase - before it gets exhausting. Can you find a nice ending?

The point of being in love is that life automatically gives me lessons like these: Who am I attractive to? What do I do with it? Falling in love is a choice.

Florian Klampfer is a couples therapist and works in Berlin. Further information at: beratungspraxis-klampfer.de

Would you like to read more about the topic and exchange ideas with other women? Then have a look at the "Love, Relationship and Personality Forum"BRIGITTE communitypast!

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