Assumptions are the mother of all f@ck ups… my mum has taught me (and she doesn’t usually swear!)
To be honest it didn’t really sink in for me until I became a psychotherapist and of course starting exploring my own relationships.
One of them in particular – my marriage.
Can you see the assumptions that are playing out in this series of wedding photos?? go easy, lol.
We were married at home, and because we had the ceremony outside, Kent put his sunglasses on. The music was cued, and Etta James ‘At Last’ rung out whilst my dad walked me down the aisle.
When I arrived in front of Kent, all the guests eyes were on us, and the celebrant began his introductions.
It was nerve wracking and I was trying to see how Kent was feeling but I couldn’t for the life of me see his EYES.
Then I realised he was unaware his sunnies were an issue, and was about to happily marry me with them on.
I didn’t want to interrupt the ceremony, so I smiled and began hissing through my teeth ‘sunnies off, sunnies off’.
He didn’t hear me, and I became panicked that I’d be offering my life time vowels to Elwood Blues.
Fortunately the celebrant heard, told Kent, and we moved on free of sunglasses with a little laugh.
Looking back on it, only our assumptions were mucking things up.
I assumed he’d also prefer unobstructed eye contact, but he felt completely connected to me, and assumed I was ok too.
Of course the catastrophic story going through my mind was ‘he’s not taking this seriously’ and it was ramping up every second he didn’t hear my hissed pleads.
That panicked moment still haunts me at times, as Kent was none the wiser that I was stressed. Even speaking to him about writing this post he looked puzzled and said – it was glary so I had my sunglasses on. Gahhhhhhhh.
and so 15 married years later, the fear that he wasn’t serious about our relationship, was just a fear 🙂
We certainly don’t always ‘see eye to eye’ but we’ve found that curiosity and compassion has been helpful when we’ve leant into being vulnerable with each other. It takes willingness and grace to share your assumptions, but when you do, mountains may prove to actually be mole hills.
When we do it well, it takes away blame and strengthens our relationship.
When we forget, we end up stubbornly pointing the finger at each other (yes, that one sometimes too, ha)
I really enjoy working with my clients whilst they begin to explore their own assumptions in their relationships – romantic or otherwise.
If this is something you think may be helpful for you, reach out.
I don’t work with couples, but I do work with individuals, and I’d be very happy to chat with you over the phone first so you can assess if you’d like to work with me.
Lean in, invest in yourself and those you love, by learning more about yourself and how to compassionately communicate your needs.
Warmest, Ailsa x