Life is often a dance. A balancing act. Too much to one extreme or the other, and we fall on our faces.
One of the primary balancing acts in marriage seems to be connectivity vs. autonomy.
Intimacy in its very act is connectiveness between two people. The physical manifestation mirrors the emotional – one being becoming enmeshed in the other.
The problem is that as we have discussed the only way to be happy seems to come from a personal ability to individualize – that is, to truly stand alone in the world without external depenence.
So the question becomes, how can we achieve both mutual independence and connectivity at the same time, since they truly are two contradictory goals.
The typical psychologist answer seems to be that you need to find balance, and that you are looking for two individuals to come together and connect but not lose yourself in the connection. That is how they would solve the conundrum, I think.
However, it doesn’t really sit well with me. Rather, I feel that it is similar to what we saw with self-acceptance being dependent upon others acceptance of your own true behavior. That there are times when the individual does have to look beyond themselves to find their own completion, in some manner. This belief nods its head to the fact that man is truly a social creature, and that we can’t escape this reality.
Of course, this is not a very popular view, I don’t think, in our world which only believes in truly autonomous individuals. However, I believe it to be closer to the truth.