In romantic relationships we are far from unconditional in our loving. In fact, we expect certain individual needs to be met in order to love someone. Romantic relationships are probably the least true expression of unconditional love. It's sad.
Do we love another when they are acting badly? Do we love another when we aren't getting our needs met? Do we love someone when they don't return that love in a way we feel it? I would have to say from my observations in myself and others that the answer is NO.
Our parents are human and they do things to us that we take so personally and turn our anger on them very quickly. Our lovers/partners forget things, ignore things and we immediately withdraw our love. Based on the expectations we have of these people in our lives, we choose to only them conditionally.
We can easily love our animals and children even if they do something that displeases us. Our kids inevitably yell the words "I hate you" at some time in their lives. They lie to us, they hide things from us. We still love them no matter what they do. Our pets destroy furniture, pee on the carpet and ruin some of our favorite things, yet we still love them.
Why do we allow our own expectations of others to rule our love for them?
Today I've chosen to express love unconditionally for someone who has done all they can to push me away. In their own self sabotaging way, they are refusing to accept that they deserve to be loved. In choosing to express love for this person regardless of the love they can or can't reciprocate is to choose unconditional love. Is it easy? Nope! It's really hard to detach from my own expectations and perceived needs. But, in choosing this rather then anger or abandonment I stand in a place that denies all selfish needs. It isn't a relationship that is toxic or harmful to me. In that case, I would love at a distance. It is one in which the person doesn't know how to receive love and isn't sure how to express it.
My hope is that in loving unconditionally, this person will feel loved, deserving or not. My purpose on this planet is to love and to teach. I can only teach what I know and can live. I've always believed you can't expect from others what you aren't willing to do yourself.
Are you willing to learn to love unconditionally?
2012(c) Bernadette Dickinson