Some people have decided at some point that the price of love is too high; we call them rejectors. They act as if, “No matter what you do, I won’t love you.”
Others we call acceptors. They are willing to pay any price for love, put up with any pain for the hope of being loved. They settle for crumbs. They end up depressed.
Rejectors end up lonely and alone. The problem for rejectors is often that they don’t allow themselves to take in the love that is offered them because they are afraid the cost to them will be too high. So anything they give feels like too much since they don’t take in enough to ever feel loved themselves. Rejectors need to allow themselves to be vulnerable, to feel their need, to express it, and to risk letting themselves feel close to another.
Acceptors need to express their anger and not allow themselves to pay too high a price for love. Both acceptors and rejectors need to learn to express the full range of their emotions and to empathize with the emotions of their partners, if intimacy is ever to be the pleasure it can be.
It is important for most persons new to this process to under-stand the difference between “giving”, “receiving” and “taking”. Givers bestow their gifts on those around them, often without being asked and sometimes when these gifts are not even desired. The giver often expects that their gifts will be returned in kind, and can be very hurt or angry when they are not. The receiver simply waits for a giver to appear, accepting whatever they are given, but often feeling that they are not getting what they want. Both positions arise out of early decisions and attitudes about our needs, and reflect a lack of entitlement.
The taker is different. The taker presents a need to the other and, if the other agrees, takes what they need. The needs of the taker are met, and the other person has the pleasure of “being there” for someone else. The basic attitude of the taker is, “My needs for closeness are a pleasure, and I am entitled to reach out to meet them.”
LOVE VS. APPROVAL
It is also important to understand the difference between love and approval. We get approval for achievement. We get love for the pleasure of our being. As adults, it is our own approval we need to take responsibility for, for our own choices, our own decisions about what we want to achieve. We need Bonding from others and the feelings of pleasure and love that flow from that.
~ Lori Heyman Gordon