Imagine the following scenario.
You’ve met someone and you just clicked. You’ve seen each other a few times and it seems to get better each time. Your expectations start to build and you think this could be it! This person could be the one!
Then – Bam! The other person disappears without a word. You’re left wondering what the heck just happened. You’re sad and also mad at yourself because you allowed yourself to be vulnerable for the first time in a long time, and you fear that this episode may be the impetus for a retreat back behind your self-imposed walls.
Now, you MIGHT have believed that you were experiencing the beginning of love, but this is not how love looks.
Love doesn’t run away, and it is not so disrespectful that it leaves without an explanation. Moreover, true love does not happen over the course of a few dates; it takes time to take root and grow.
In truth, it is the unfulfillment of your expectations that will get you every time. What brings the most sorrow in life is when reality is vastly different from the picture in your head of what it was supposed to look like. And you know how much I dislike the word “should” and the phrase “supposed to.”
When you meet someone to whom you really feel a connection, I know it is sometimes hard to keep your excitement and expectations in check. And if things go wrong, it’s also human nature to try to figure out if you did anything wrong.
Having said that, it is important to let a relationship unfold in the manner that was meant to be. That doesn’t mean you can’t lovingly encourage it along. Just don’t blindly jump to Phase 10 when you’re really only in Phase 1.
Here is an excerpt from Love After Loss: Writing The Rest of Your Story that illustrates what can happen when you harbor expectations and they are subsequently dashed.
Do not make promises you cannot keep
They create expectations, and
a broken expectation is the stuff of broken hearts
You say you’ll call, you’ll write
I sit by the phone, watch the mail
But those were empty promises, and my heart turns cold
Each broken promise is like a brick added to
the wall around my soft, believing heart
The next person who makes a promise will have to
chip away at my hardened heart for me to believe it will come true
Your words are powerful and create an energy of their own
It can be a positive energy and create joy, or
it can be lies and create sadness and disappointment
Be wary of what you say, and
have your words and actions always be the same