Tuesday, March 13, 2007

The Relationship Roller Coaster

Most spend their teen years on a romantic roller coaster. As they hurdle earthward from one expiring relationship, they suddenly throttle skyward as another blossoms. It feels so good as a new relationship begins. It feels so bad as it all too quickly ends. Most teens are as hooked on the Relationship Roller Coaster as others are on boozes or drugs. And in much the same way, they keep looking for another romantic high. Why does it feel like heaven falling into love and like the not so proverbial abyss when you fall the other way?

The dynamics of romantic pairing include: someone finding you attractive; someone choosing you over all others; someone making you feel important, needed, valued, loved; someone giving you the assurance that your needs will be forever met; someone making you really belong at work or church or school. And when that someone shares these feelings, some degree of bonding typically called “love” occurs.

But after a time feelings change; what goes up must come down. One may find another more attractive. One or both may grow tired of making the other feel important, needed, valued, loved. The assurance that needs will be met begins to drift away with the sad realization that what they thought they saw was never really there. And when the bond is finally broken, that sense of belonging is replaced with that terrible feeling of being rejected and alone.

What did they do wrong? They invested too much in feelings. They forgot that love in not something to FEEL but something to DO. It is a commitment, a promise, and perhaps a sacred vow: “In sickness and health, for richer or poorer, for better or worse, forsaking all others….” And even more than that, they tried to replace the One who will completely fulfill their needs and give them joy now and forever more.

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