Can relationship be a separate entity?

I spent part of my Sunday on listening to podcasts about relationships. I found a relationship coach called Jonathon Aslay who seems to be making a lot of sense but I didn’t spend enough time on studying what he has to say to really be able to recommend him. I certainly think though that he is worth checking out.

I also listened to an interview with dr Guy Winch, a relationship psychologist who talked about concept of seeing a relationship as a separate entity. It’s not the first time I came accross that concept and I must say I don’t understand it at all. So basically, we’re supposed to think what our relationship needs. Let’s say you are tired and he is tired so you both spend time on yourself, and I would think that’s absolutely fine and normal behaviour, but apparently the relationship then suffers. But then if I invest time in relationship when I need rest, it would suffer too, wouldn’t it? There was not much explanation given to it at all, it never is but I am now thinking how damaging those concepts can be for us, autistic people, who don’t understand the world of relationships very well and try to use external advice to manage them. It makes it so much easier to make a false assumption instead of just using our common sense.

I try to think what mine and John’s ‘relationship on a break’ may need and I really don’t know. As we are on a break, you could say we shouldn’t be talking to each other or thinking about each other at all, to fully connect with the break element. Or you could say that the break element needs to be removed and we need to get back together and fully work on commitment. Both of those approaches actively encourage ignoring our feelings and needs, as individuals. And if we ignore needs of individuals that form the relationship, it’s going to eventually lead to tension.

There is no such thing as ‘relationship as a separate entity’. Relationship doesn’t have needs, desires, thoughts or hopes. Relationship can’t feel rejection, only people can. I wonder then why we are being offered those types of truths to navigate our love lives. But I also wonder if this is just my perspective and if it’s possible that neurotypical people will find it helpful?

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