WHAT OUR PUPPY TAUGHT US ABOUT RELATIONSHIPS

Just now we heard an odd scratching sound and found our puppy, Molly, trying to bury a rawhide chew stick in the couch. She was quite systematic, tucking it deep between the cushions and using her nose to push dirt on top of it.

July 7, 2022

What our puppy taught us about relationships…

Just now we heard an odd scratching sound and found our puppy, Molly, trying to bury a rawhide chew stick in the couch.

She was quite systematic, tucking it deep between the cushions and using her nose to push dirt on top of it.

Wait, there is no pile of dirt on the couch! Somewhere in her ancestral programming is an impulse to bury things, an impulse to push dirt over the buried treasure with her nose, even though there is no dirt to push and no rival dog to steal her chew stick. Instinct and impulse rule the day.

Now, you may not like being compared to a puppy, even a cute puppy like Molly, but … don’t you sometimes do things automatically, even though they don’t make sense in your relationship? Be honest!

Haven’t you found yourself automatically insisting on your view of things, even though it upsets the person you’ve chosen to spend your life with? And even though you may not remember why you “always” do it that way?

Haven’t you sometimes insisted on your way of doing things, even if it made the person you love unhappy?

Haven’t you automatically defend yourself against the person who loves you to bits?

We confess: from time to time we do things automatically that deprive us — at least for the moment — of being in our loving relationship. (Just now, some water got spilled in the kitchen, and we automatically set about blaming each other for the spill. We’ve done that in the past , this mutual “it’s your fault,” and we can assure you it NEVER made us feel better. And we’ll probably do it again, automatically.)

We expect we’d be happier if we did more of our life intentionally, and less of it automatically.

But we’ll deal with that later. Right now, we have to help our puppy find her chew stick. While we were writing, she hid it, and she doesn’t seem to know where.

Molly, our relationship instructor

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