Friday, May 3, 2019

Dominance & Relationships

In several previous posts, I have expressed my thoughts on love and compatibility, concluding that one does not necessarily imply the other.  As a result, I am of the opinion that couples should live together for a few years before committing to marriage (and especially before conceiving children).

It seems to me that another factor may also sabotage loving relationships, often very early in their course.  Fear of domination, the concern that your partner's ambition may interfere with your own personal goals, has become increasingly relevant in modern society.  Prior to the mid 20th Century, men were the traditional breadwinners within a family and most wives were homemakers, devoting themselves to managing the household and raising children; of course, in many cases, that role was accepted with some resignation.  Since that time, women have pursued careers that were previously limited to men and couples must often balance the demands that come with a two-career partnership, magnifying the stress that naturally accompanies marriage and child-rearing.

It is thus not surprising that fear of domination (real or imagined) threatens many modern relationships.  In the end, the only means of dealing with this fear is a mutual commitment to open communication, cooperation and compromise, an approach that must be reinforced throughout the marriage or partnership.  Unfortunately, the underlying tension may persist, fueling distrust, conflict and, in many cases, divorce.