Ordinary relationships are characterized by the scarcity of love, with considerations like: Does he love me?
If she loves him will she have enough love for me?
He didn't call so he doesn't love me.
Nobody really loves me.
There's not enough love for me.
By learning to create ordinary relationships on purpose, you gain the ability to quickly assess your own intentions and to navigate to extraordinary or archetypal relationship instead of the familiar ordinary.
Here is how to practice navigating to ordinary relationship spaces consciously:
1. Complain to your partner about anything that does not suit you. Use a whining, victimy tone of voice when you complain. Respond negatively to any assurances given to you about anything. Make sure that the object of your complaints can never be resolved. You complain. Your partner tries to fix it. You create reasons why their solutions will not work. At least in this game you always have something to talk about.
2. Try to be right whenever issues arise. Argue your point. Do not give up until your partner concedes that you are right.
3. In order to supplement being right, also try to make your partner wrong whenever there is an opportunity to do so. After all, you are not making them wrong. They actually are wrong. You are just doing them the favor of pointing it out to them.
4. Take a rigid position about everything and anything (“I have to wash my face before I go to bed!”). Be fanatical about your positions. Go for the throat. Take no prisoners. Justify your position any way that you can. After all, everyone has a right to their own opinions.
5. Feel resentment about anything your partner ever did that offended or frightened or embarrassed you. Whenever you look at your partner, remember your resentments first. Never forget your resentments.
6. Feel resentment about your own childhood. Remember all of your old wounds. Assume that the people presently around you will wound you again. Project this onto your partner. Your partner then becomes your enemy with conscious or unconscious intentions to harm you. Stay little. Never grow up.
7. Feel resentment about your children, your boss, your colleagues. After all, resentment is a way to take care of yourself by feeling strong and righteous.
8. Have a never-ending competition with your partner about who has the worst life. Dedicate yourself to proving to your partner that your life is less fun than theirs. Even if life seems momentarily good, you have the shit end of the stick. Search for subtle evidence to demonstrate that your partner has it better than you. This gives you permission to go shopping.
9. If your partner does have a little bit of fun, make them feel guilty as hell. They should have been working on something. There is so much that needs to be done or that needs to be cleaned up. Who do they think they are having fun?
10. Confine your experience of love to the linear, personal, transient, conditional, minimized, localized, ordinary, verbal-reality of “I love you.” As soon as the echo of the spoken words fades out of the room so does your faith in your partner’s love.
11. Give up about little things. Give up about life. Have no hope. Try to make your partner rescue you from hopelessness. If they fail to rescue you, blame them for not caring and assume they are having an affair.
12. Get a nice car and keep it clean. Get a hi-tech mobile phone and a sleek computer. Live in your car, your phone and your computer. Look at your relationship and wonder why it is so messy compared to your car, your phone and your computer. Obviously, the mess must be your partner’s fault.
13. Be strong, try hard, be perfect, always keep pushing yourself. Push yourself until you break down psychologically, emotionally or physically and then make your partner pick up the slack for you so they can finally value all the work you have been doing.
14. Do not be happy. Do not enjoy life. Do not be powerful. Have excuses that blame other people or your life circumstances for not being happy, powerful, and enjoying life.
15. Give away your authority so you do not have to make decisions about your life. Give your authority to any authority figure: doctors, plumbers, computer guys, the phone company, the car mechanics, the government, your children, the tax people, to anybody. Feel weak and used. Feel stupid. Complain about the bad service and high prices.
16. Stay in your head. Righteously value intellectual and rational considerations above all else. Confine your life to your reasons. No matter what, do not feel. Feelings are irrational.
17. Stay in your bed. Sleep in. Try to keep dreaming. Sleeping and dreaming are better than what is happening in your life. If you are sleeping and dreaming maybe people will leave you alone. Maybe things will change by themselves.
18. Do not be glamorous and sexy for your partner. Instead, be glamorous and sexy for people who do not matter so that you maintain a good public image.
19. Conceive of “here” as very big, covering everywhere that you have ever been. Regard “now” as immense, extending far beyond this moment, back into the past and far into the distant future. Ignore the obvious fact that you can do nothing to change the past and little or nothing to predetermine the future, and nothing about what is not here. Include the past, the future, and everywhere, into a gigantic “here and now.” Then feel totally overwhelmed about how much you carry on your shoulders. Use this overwhelm as an excuse to eat chocolate
20. Never say just “yes” or “no” in response to “yes or no” questions. Always go sideways instead, and make sure that you add in all the details.
21. Never answer the question that is asked. Always assume that your assumptions about the question and about the questioner are more correct than the questioner’s. Then answer the question that you assume they are really asking.
22. Always be worried that the worst thing that ever happened to you is any minute going to happen to you again. Make it your partner’s responsibility to protect you from this worry.
23. Limit your experience to your vocabulary. Have no experience that you do not have a name for. Regard everything else as ridiculous and irrelevant. Teach this to your children.
24. Create and maintain the story in your mind that your partner is inferior to you or that your partner is an idiot. Consistently find little pieces of evidence to support that story. Whenever you look at your partner, see your stories about them instead of them.
25. To supplement the view that your partner is inferior to you, also create and maintain the story that you are superior to your partner. Find little ways to constantly remind your partner of this, especially when in the company of relatives, business associates, or mutual friends.
26. Have expectations about how your partner should act, about what they should feel, about where they should sit, about how they should dress, about how they should treat you, about what they should order to eat in the restaurant, about how they are driving, and so on. Get angry if their behavior ever fails to meet your expectations.
27. Feel afraid if your partner dares to express their feelings to you. As soon as they begin expressing their feelings to you, panic and express your feelings to them. After all, if they stop withholding their feelings it is only fair that you express your feelings too. Make sure that your feelings are bigger and stronger than their feelings.
28. Blame your partner for everything that is not handled, everything that goes wrong, everything that ever went wrong, and everything that could possibly ever go wrong. What else are they there for?
29. Attack your partner whenever you feel any kind of discomfort. This way they know you are there. If your partner ever thinks that you are comfortable, who knows, they might not give you any more attention.
30. Be a public doormat. Neurotically worry that you might cause a problem for somebody. Walk on eggshells around everyone. Keep imagining that you are being a problem for your partner or for others. Keep giving many excuses and reasons why it is not your fault, and also blame your partner for the unfairness of thinking that you are a problem.
31. Do not live your life. Feel resentment for having to be adaptive and not being able to be yourself and live your life. Never clear your resentments.
32. Make assumptions freely about whatever you want. Make your partner responsible for the effect of your assumptions.
33. Ignore the possibility of being an adult man or woman. Let your childhood thinking and feeling patterns take over and dominate your adult life. Create the popular fantasy of a scared needy adaptive inner child, and give more importance to this fantasy than to your mate.
34. Project your father onto your man. Find evidence to prove that he is your father because he is doing it to you again!
35. Project your mother onto your woman. Be in bed with your mother when you are in bed with your woman. Blame your woman for this.
36. Be scared about everything that you do not know and cannot control. Use your fear to control your partner.
37. Whenever your partner is willing to listen to you, complain about the mobbing at work, complain about projects being prematurely terminated, complain about the incredible laziness of your colleagues or employees or your boss, describe people dying in bizarre accidents, describe what is happening in the war, describe what is happening in politics, complain about the housework, complain about the kids always interrupting, complain about having too much to do and no time to complete anything. Keep talking about something. Above all do not be together in silence. Always keep the radio on.
38. Without making it obvious, distract your partner and yourself from entering the spaces where it would be possible to speak together about love or beauty or grace.
39. Be needy in such a way that your neediness can never be fulfilled. Make it your partner’s responsibility to fulfill your neediness.
40. Be adaptive to the person who comes to your front door and asks for donations. Be adaptive at work. Be adaptive to the telephone salesperson. Be adaptive to your parents. Be angry with your partner for not protecting you from all the people with whom you are adaptive.
41. Let your parents’ opinion about your life have more importance than your own opinion about your life. Let your parents’ opinion about your partner’s life have more importance than your own opinion about your partner’s life.
42. Let your parents question and berate your decisions about childraising, vacations, housecleaning, and your job. Let your parents berate your mate. Give your parents controlling authority in your household. Decide that you will wait until your parents die before you start living your own life. Wait impatiently. Let the years go by.
43. Draw conclusions about whatever you want in life so as to sustain your present view of things. Believe your conclusions in the face of contradictory evidence. Especially ignore evidence offered by your partner.
44. Defend yourself from intimacy. Do not let anyone, especially your partner, get closer to you than your mask.
45. Do not trust your partner. Continuously collect evidence to prove that they are untrustworthy.
46. Defend yourself from evolution. Do not try to learn. Think that your habits are you. Try to stay solid in your habits and persevere with the set of behaviors that you established for yourself long ago. Always serve the same menu for Christmas dinner.
47. Become expert in avoiding responsibility. Procrastinate. Hesitate. Use your energy for creating excuses rather than creating results. Take no risks. Leave well enough alone. Do not rock the boat. Keep your hands clean. Relate to responsibility as if responsibility means fault, blame, guilt or a heavy burden. Do not play your life full out.
48. Do not make boundaries, or if you do make a boundary, make it too feebly or too late so that you get hurt first and are justified in making the boundary as a way to get revenge.
49. Do not ask for what you need. Expect that by now other people around you should already know exactly what you need.
50. If you do not get what you need, then use that as a good reason to cheat. Do not ask for what you want. Then, when you do not get it, live a double life and sneak to get what you want somewhere else.
51. Withhold sex to punish your mate for not giving you what you want. Lie about why you are withholding sex.
52. Make your own personal comfort and security the highest priority. Make other people dance around you to make you feel comfortable and secure. After all, you deserve basic comfort and security, don’t you? Other people should know how to make you comfortable and secure. Be neurotic in ways that make it impossible to be comfortable or have security.
53. Attach yourself to your partner by getting into their private spaces. Look in their drawers, read papers on their desk, open their mail, cross-examine their friends and colleagues, check their receipts, listen to their phone messages, and snoop into their stuff. Know what they are going to do before they do. Be psychologically, emotionally, and energetically enmeshed with them. Think that fusion is closeness.
54. If your partner does not give you pleasure, if they do not cook you the right meal at the right time or the way you want it (without too much salt, eggs not too wet, salad torn rather than cut the way you like it), if they leave messes, if they do not touch you the right way, if they play the music too loudly, if they dress improperly, then feel insulted and close up your love for them. If they do not give you pleasure then obviously they do not love you. Why should you love them?
55. Try to make your partner change. If your partner will not change, then complain about them to their mother. Maybe she can make them change.
56. Try to change your parents, your boss, your colleagues, and your relatives. Hate them for not changing, or hate yourself for failing to change them, or hate both them and yourself.
57. Get fanatically involved in all the latest diet and health fads. Secretly think that your partner has no life if they do not get excited about your diet or health plan. Spend a lot of money. Change your plan when you get bored. Do not explain anything to your partner.
58. Blame the faults of your children on your partner. Your children obviously inherited their bad characteristics from your partner or your partner’s family.
59. Guiltily buy expensive little things and put them away in your closet or in the garage. Wait. When you finally wear them or use them and your partner notices, say, “Oh, I’ve had this a long time…”
60. Be a victim of time. Stay super busy. Chase after the clock. Be in a hurry. Rush around. Do not have enough time to feel or to be relaxed. Do not make time to really be present with anyone. Starve yourself from deep, nurturing, adult human contact, and go to bed exhausted each night.
61. Be late. Do not keep your time commitments. Never arrive on time. Make people wait for you. Always pack your things at the last minute and be completely wiped out or even sick before leaving on any trips with your partner.
62. Feel overwhelmed about all the details and responsibilities of life. Attack anyone who does not feel as overwhelmed as you for being irresponsible or unconscious.
63. Do sports. Use all your extra energy for athletic competition. Come home exhausted. Get hurt so your partner must respect your sport because it has the power to interfere with their life. Constantly talk about your sport whenever you get together with friends even if your partner does not participate. Use sore muscles and exhaustion as an excuse to avoid physical intimacy. Get up early and run seven days a week because it is inarguable that everyone needs cardiovascular exercise. Then you don’t have to come up with another reason for not having sex in the morning.
64. Suddenly become holy. Read spiritual books and do whatever they say. Do breathing practices, yoga postures, Buddhist meditations, and shamanic rituals. Fill your house with crystals. Tell your partner what they should or should not do by quoting from your books. Bring over weird friends who are not really your friends but at least they are holy.
65. Surround yourself with persecutors and rescuers. Wake up in the morning and before you even get out of bed, count your enemies. Put on the day as if it has the same possibilities as yesterday, like wearing dirty clothes.
66. At parties, make jokes about your partner’s personality quirks.
67. Be mean to your partner, but feel well justified that it is pay back for all the times when they were mean to you. Accept disrespectful behavior from yourself towards your partner.
68. Expect your partner to be everything for you. Do not have friends. Do not let your partner have friends. Starve yourself from contact and make your partner starve themselves from contact so that you can prove that you have a “monogamous” relationship. Stay with your partner even if your relationship is no longer living so that you can have a relationship “’til death do you part.” Sacrifice your aliveness to the customs of your culture and times.
69. Indulge yourself in addictive sentimentality, nostalgia, depression, and melancholy. Expect your partner not to react or to need you to be present for them.
70. Mix your emotions from the past with your feelings from the present to create confusion for yourself and others so that you never have to be accountable for what is happening right now.
71. Use your relationship to feed “psychological vampire-entities.” Pretend that you don’t know what I am talking about. Try to stay unconscious about the fact that hosting parasitic energy-sucking entities keeps your relationship going. Let your entities feed on your partner, and let yourself be fed upon by your partner’s psychological vampire-entities. Call this reciprocal vampire-feeding-frenzy a “relationship.”
72. Do not notice the predictable feeding patterns of your Gremlin. Do not notice that you explode in rage and have an emotionally-charged conflict once a month for five days, or once a week for a day and a night, or a few times a day. Do not notice that you have several identities within your psychology who do not know each other and who each think that they are the only one.
73. Live in the world of “me, me, me,” as if you were separate from everyone else and they were all separate from you. If you do not take care of yourself, who will? No matter how many saunas you take or appointments at the hair-salon, feel uncared for.
74. Stay in survival. Live a minimal life. Do not indulge your personal whims for adventure, extravagance, new experience, generosity, learning, discovery, exploration, or expansion. Instead, watch television night after night. Have no imagination. Be timid, linear and predictable. Let your fears stay bigger than you so that you can remain in a life of survival.
75. Engage in an ongoing power-struggle with your partner. Struggle privately at home – about the children, about money, about making plans. Struggle publicly at meetings, at parties, at work, so that if you win, others can witness your great victory over your partner. Always make sure that your partner does not have more power or recognition than you do. If they do, figure out ways to undermine their power and destroy them. But not totally. If they were totally destroyed how could you continue enjoying the power-struggle?
76. Be jealous of your partner’s attractiveness or success. Resent them for it. Pull your appreciation away from them and minimize your love for them because they already get more than enough love and appreciation from other people.
77. Feel small. Feel weak. Feel like a failure. Feel unworthy. Feel unlovable. Find evidence to continuously prove the view that you are unlovable. This proves that your partner is stupid because they chose someone to love who is unlovable. This proves that life is bad. When life is proven to be bad then you can continue to live as you always have and not really care about anything.
78. Misunderstand whatever your partner says so that you are sure they are telling you “You are wrong,” “You are stupid,” or “You are not good enough.” Respond to your interpretation of what your partner says, not to what they actually say. Do not realize that you are twisting their communications around. Do not let them explain themselves.
79. Use your fear to limit your partner’s radiant exuberance. Obviously there needs to be a balance. When your partner is effervescing beyond your permitted aliveness limit, then dump cold water on them. Keep your aliveness limit low so you get to dump cold water on your partner a lot. This way you have job security. Only be alive when your partner is not around to see.
80. Fight unfairly. Call your partner names (Know It All, Mr. Independent, Sad Sack, Mrs. Prudence). Use the words “never” and “always.” Get violent, hit or throw things, or threaten violence. Think that the conflict is all their fault and that you are not equally responsible. Use the children or money or sex as weapons.
81. Think that you know who your partner is. Do not listen to your partner so that you can repeat back what you heard them say. Refuse to be-with your partner in the conflict. After the fight cut yourself off from your partner for days and sulk.
82. Use intimate time with your partner to triangulate (to speak about someone who is not there). Complain about people to your partner rather than speaking only about that person to their face. Do not acknowledge that you again trivialized a moment that could have been profound.
83. Triangulate about your partner when they are not there. Gossip about your partner to your friends, to their friends, or to relatives, when they are not there. Let the others lead you on until you share intimacies that would embarrass or hurt your partner.
84. Exaggerate when recounting stories about your partner to other people. Make your partner sound braver, stronger, and smarter, or weaker, slower and stupider than what actually happened. Exaggerate so often that you live in your own fantasy of what happened rather than in the simplicity of what really happened. If your partner exaggerates stories about you, assume they are doing so to hurt you. Make their transgression really important.
85. Use your partner as a garbage can for all the bad things that happen to you during your day. When you are finished unloading your psychic shit into their soul then assume that your obligations for being intimate with them are over for the day.
86. Do not respect the natural inherent nobility, elegance and dignity of your partner as a man or a woman. Do not even see the possibility of such qualities in them or in their lives. Treat your partner as a child, or as a kind of monkey with the capacity for living only an ordinary low-grade animal life.
87. Do not let your partner have their own problems. Do things for your partner because you are afraid that they are incapable of doing those things for themselves. Think that you are helping your partner. If they ever complain, get offended because if they do not want your help then they obviously do not want your love.
88. Find evidence to support the story that your partner is a pig. Find a little piece of evidence each day. Even the tiniest piece of evidence is sufficient. After all, you have so much evidence already in the “evidence sack” that you carry around with you that you actually do not even need to find any more evidence at all. The new evidence just helps you to remember that your partner is a pig. You can also use the evidence to prove pigness to your partner so they do not forget it either.
89. Live as if you are your psychology. Live as if the reality that your psychology paints for you to live in is the one and only true and actual reality of the world. Believe it like the sun shines. Live as if your view is as solid as granite and your truth is as objective as God. Regard anyone who so much as hints that they doubt you as if they are an attacker.
90. Live as if your partner is their psychology. Assume they are always going to stay that way, and that they are completely inflexible and rigid. Take what they say as an absolute that you must either destroy or become the slave of. Do not assume that your partner is anything but their arguments and reasons. Do not let love or relationship or acceptance or healing be bigger than your psychological differences. Never simply rest in the psychology-free communion of being together.
91. Try not to know that you are going to die. Live as if you have all the time in the world. Do not appreciate those rare moments of simple companionship as if they could be the last moments of your life together. When nothing happens it is just wasted time. If one of you is sick, it is a problem. Something is wrong. It is a mistake in the program. Again, it is wasted time. If one of you dies or goes away, be shocked, but do not fundamentally learn anything about life.
92. Feed your addictions. Use part of your attention, even during the most intimate of times, to crave videos, foods, drinks, computer sex; use it for self-gratification, for complaining, for being depressed; use it to judge, to stay in your head and think. Never learn to tolerate the ever-increasing intensity of being wholly with another human being. Get yourself a drink and turn down the volume of passionate love. Keep it normal. Only go where you already have been. Then boredom is a reason to have another one, and you do not have to be afraid of how magnificent and glorious life really is.
93. Do not speak about what really matters to you. Do not dare to risk sharing from the depths of your heart. Never trust so deeply as to open your soul and reveal your deepest tender delicate incomplete uncertain desires to your partner, even alone in bed together. Assume that your partner would just laugh at you anyway, or use it to make fun of you in public. Instead of sharing your inner world, keep your desires secret. Do not allow life to be a creative playground in which you can unfold your being and create what really matters to you. Take your passions with you to the grave.
94. Try to be a good boy. You know what a good boy is. Your mommy forced you to be a good boy. So did the teachers. If you are not a good boy, the teacher will tell mommy and mommy will tell daddy and daddy will whip you in the worst way. The rules for being a good boy are deeply imprinted and socially acceptable. Being a good boy is safe. If you keep being a good boy, even though the price is excruciating heartache about not being yourself, at least you are a good boy. Maybe a nice girl will approve of you like mommy and the teachers and then everything will be fine.
95. Dedicate yourself to being a nice girl. Give your authenticity over to the magazines and advertising media. Try to make yourself beautiful according to standards set by the makers of anti-aging creams, stylish clothing, and cellulite-producing prepackaged cake mixes. Be a nice girl so deeply that you can never find the wickedly sensuous creature of whole body orgasms, who is skilled enough to keep a man at bay until she herself is satiated. Nice girls don’t do that! At least your living room looks well ordered.
96. Permit yourself to be repeatedly disrespected and dishonored. Never make a righteous boundary. Use your shame as license to get revenge. If you save up enough “disgrace points” through silently eating disrespect and dishonor, perhaps you can cash them in for a wild spending binge, for an affair, or maybe even for a righteously justified divorce complete with lawyer-enforced alimony payments.
97. Decide that since you went to school you already know everything there is to know about being a man or a woman, being in a human body, being in a long-term committed relationship, and being a parent besides. Do not go outside of your culture to learn things that your culture is incapable of teaching you. Do not admit to the necessity of change. Do not use your relationship as a way to create the necessity for evolutionary development. Act as if everything is okay. Act as if things are as they are and make it clear that you are not responsible for making them any different.
98. Surround yourself with “eggshells.” Create a complex and sophisticated protective layer of ways that you can be offended. Maintain a hair trigger to threaten your partner with violent rage or other childish behavior so that you can control them.
99. Stay identified with the rules and views of your cultural, political or religious affiliation (I am Italian. I drive only Fords. I am from the Big Apple. I am a Dodgers fan. I am Buddhist. I am Republican. I am Vegetarian.). Hold on to your identification stronger than to your partnership. Attend gatherings of your false identity circle to sustain your illusion of self-knowledge, belonging and being accepted. Never find an intimacy that is more subtle or profound than the intimacy of a cheering football crowd or a bar song.
100. Do not really care about the well-being of your partner. They are, after all, adult, and they should be able to take care of themselves. Use your partner as the butt of your jokes, feel glad when they lose, feel glad when they are not strong, feel glad when they are feeling pain. It is only fair that they too should suffer sometimes.
101. Worry about what the neighbors think. Make your highest priority to be seen and accepted as normal. Go into deep denial of lack of connectedness in order to keep up the appearance of being in a happy relationship.
102. Worry about keeping up with the neighbor’s possessions or vacations.
103. Complain about not having enough money. Buy things on credit. Live in subtle terror and deep confusion about not knowing how you are going to pay bills even if the bills are not due until far off in the future.
103a. Keep private bank accounts. Do not let your partner know how much money you have. When you eat out, pay rent, or go to the movies, each pay separately. Let modern culture's fear of needing enough money to live keep your hearts and souls separate, let it contaminate your love with a dark stain. Compete to buy each other the most expensive Christmas presents.
104. Keep around mementos and souvenirs of past relationships such as photos, letters, gifts and clothes. Keep putting attention on those objects as if they mean something. Do not give that attention to your partner.
105. Compare your partner to somebody else, such as their parents, past partners, their siblings, or movie stars. Find your partner lacking and point it out to them, more than once. Better is every day.
106. Do not apologize to your partner. Do not accept apologies from your partner. Never forget what has offended you, even if it was a long time ago. Never forgive your partner.
107. Listen to the critical voices in your head. Keep an internal dialog going in your mind about how stupid your partner is, what they are doing wrong, how they will never get it, how they are so self-centered and never think about the wants and needs of anybody else. Believe your own story and keep finding evidence to prove it is true, no matter how insignificant the evidence is.
108. Get offended or scared if your partner is ever unpredictable. Do not allow them any freedom for explorative expression. Require your partner to behave within strictly defined norms. Keep your “kinkiness detector” on high, and reject your partner if they ever get weird beyond what you think your mother would accept. (If you only knew your mother…) Try to act sane, and try to make your partner act sane also, especially in public.
109. Use your bed or your bedroom as a place to psychologically analyze or “process” your partner. Create no refuge. Protect no sanctuary. Permit no asylum free of your criticisms or complaints. Let there be no place in your home or no hour in the day that is a safe haven from the all-consuming considerations of Ordinary Human Relationship.
110. Assume that your partner’s potential is limited and that you know what that limit is. Assume that your relationship’s potential is limited and that you are sure of those limits. Assume that you have already achieved the maximum potentials, perhaps years ago. Relationship then becomes an endurance test. How long can you stand it? Whoever breaks first is the bad guy.
111. Assume that one of your children is a problem child. Having a problem child distracts you from having a problem relationship. Focus all of your time and worries on managing the “proper education” and “proper socialization” and "proper medication" of your “problem child” and let twenty years go by, zippity doo-dah! Use your children as the reason to postpone learning how to create anything but Ordinary Human Relationship until your learning faculty crystallizes into nonfunctionality. Then you don’t have to think about it anymore because learning won’t happen. (By the way, there is no such thing as a “problem child.” However, this is the subject of a different blog!)
112. Keep involved in conflicts in many areas of your life. Have fights with your sister, boss and colleagues. Have fights with your partner’s parents, siblings or relatives. Have fights with the labor union, the butcher, and the IRS. Have fights with the politicians, the government, the minister of the church, and the dog next door. By the time your day is over you are too worn out for anything else. Blame your partner for not being passionate.
113. Repeat your parents’ neurotic relationship patterns, whatever they are. Create a cult of pairs with your partner. Stay isolated and have no friends at all. Or have many superficial friends and be friends with your partner through being friends with everybody else. Be surprised when they fall in love with someone else. (Relationships don't die from a lack of love. Relationships die from a lack of intimacy.)
114. Make sure that all of your life decisions are welded to good reasons and insist that your partner’s decisions are too. Do not allow nonlinear or evolutionary influences to enter your life or the life of your partner. Protect your partner from questionable activities. Keep your lives squeaky clean and defensible. Read the newspaper about all the bad people out there that your police force and government are busily keeping you safe from. Avoid your neighbors.
115. Flirt, in subtle and overt ways, to make up for what you do not get from your partner. Flirt because you have no discipline with your gluttonous greedy and insatiable appetite for sexual energy no matter where it comes from or how it contaminates you. Flirt with sexually overt billboards. Flirt through your computer. Flirt with singers on the radio. Flirt over the telephone. Flirt with the waitress, the postman or your tennis teacher. Flirt with total strangers and with your mother-in-law. Also flirt when your partner is around to make them afraid that you might leave so they shape up. Flirt to prove that at least somebody is sexually attracted to you.
116. Get worried if you start to feel something. Conclude that if you are having feelings then something must be wrong with you. Use addictive substances to stay away from your feelings. Use television, sugar, newspapers, alcohol, speeding, over shopping, overwork, over exercise, videos, internet, and so on, to keep you from being authentic about what is going on for you. Hide any feelings that leak out sideways, or find external reasons to legitimize your internal feelings. If you get too worried about feelings, go to a shrink and get brain drugs. Recommend them to your partner.
117. Allow relatives, neighbors, babies, salesmen or friends to have priority over your partner when it comes to having your full admiring attention or expressing love and joy. For example, be vivacious and cheery while talking on the telephone with anyone who calls, and then when you hang up, go back to being dull and contracted. Forbid yourself to realize that your relationship is only an act of theater, and that you can shift roles in any moment with anyone.
118. Limit your concept of intimacy so that it only includes sex. Forget that you can explore and completely enjoy other physical intimacies such as cleaning out the garage, dancing, gardening, hiking, filing finger and toenails, washing hair, massage, singing, playing music, yoga, martial arts, cooking, eating, trying on clothes, painting the house, traveling to third world countries, and so on. If opportunities for these other intimacies occur, stay in your head and consider them as merely chores, or too wierd.
119. Bring your work home so there is no time for intimacy. Stay late for work or have to travel so there is no time for intimacy. Use any way you can think of to avoid intimacy. Always have a good excuse. As a back door, be a hypochondriac. Always have some physical complaint. Make comments about your physical pains an important part of your daily conversations to block intimacy. Keep at least one illness alive so that you can use your illness if you ever run out of other excuses to avoid intimacy.
120. Assume that your partner has expectations of you. React to what you think your partner is expecting of you, even if they do not say that they have expectations. Get offended about what you think they expect of you. Let your emotional reaction destroy the possibility of communion.
121. Be a slave to your reactions. Create no gap between your internal emotional reactions and your consequent external actions. Definitely do not develop the discipline to observe your own behavior patterns by splitting your attention so that you use part of your attention to become conscious of what you are doing with the rest of your attention. Instead, stay identified with your reactions as if you had no other choice. Be completely mechanical.
122. When you end your relationship, make it your partner’s fault. (The asshole.) Live the rest of your life permanently scarred. Find evidence to prove that you were horribly betrayed. Take no responsibility. Learn nothing. Hate your partner for eternity. Distrust all men (or all women). Use lawyers, relatives, and the children to get all you can out of your partner just for spite. Tell incriminating stories to mutual friends before your partner can, especially to their family, and whenever possible to the media. Take a pound of flesh. Hit them wherever it hurts. How could they dare to do this to you? Teach them a lesson they will never forget so that this will never happen to you again. Then, arrange for it to happen to you again.
By the way, do you know anyone using any of these techniques for creating ordinary relationship?
If so, they might be interested to read how to create something other than that with their partner in the book Radiant Joy Brilliant Love by Clinton Callahan. Or, then again, they might not...
There is no arguing about personal taste...