Old Wounds

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You have taken the plunge–the two of you are becoming one. Only there is a problem that can start out as a small thing but grow like a cancer until it takes over your relationship, threatening to kill the entire thing. That problem is fear, which you carry with you when you have not addressed wounds from the past. You may believe it is harmless, but fear is an ugly and dangerous monster. Fear is the emotion you experience in anticipation of some specific pain or danger, and in relationships, fear tends to manifest itself with the attitude “if I don’t take care of myself, no one will.” Therefore, you become the center of your life and your relationship, and your only true concerns are making sure you are safe from being hurt again and ensuring that your every need is met.

When you were a baby, you didn’t have to hide your selfishness because children are born that way; it’s the only way they can get their needs met. If they didn’t cry or scream, you might not know when they were hungry, needed a diaper change, or were in pain. As adults, however, most of us know that kicking, screaming, and crying are not acceptable behaviors, so we tend to hide how we’re feeling, and it therefore manifests itself in other ways.

While you may behave with the intelligence and maturity of an adult, at your core is a little child, manipulating and controlling your environment in order to ensure that you always get what you believe you need, regardless of how it affects those around you. While that strategy works very nicely for you, your spouse—the other half of your relationship—suffers greatly as a result of your behavior. May God give you the courage to address old wounds.