Coupling: Mirror Images vs. Opposites Attract
The pursuit of love is something that has long stood the test of time. But what does coupling look like for you? When choosing a potential partner, two opposing options can be usefully considered.
We’ve all seen coupling with the look/feel of the partners being Mirror Images of one-other. We’ve also scratched our heads at other pairings -ultimately realizing that, sometimes, Opposites Attract.
Perhaps you’ve dabbled with both dynamics or are more drawn to one scenario versus the other: Looking back, do you see a pattern or preference in your coupling?
Although relationships are individually unique, the similarities and differences between the participants can either lead to increased intimacy or crashed landings.
Because a better understanding of your leanings can assist in a smoother journey, let’s consider some of the highlights and challenges of these coupling dynamics:
Highlights: Being in a romantic relationship with someone similar to you has many benefits. You will have a lot in common, probably meaning that you will spend a lot of time together doing things that you both enjoy. You may also share similar views on social and political issues, have the same values and goals, and embody complimentary tastes in things like wine and home décor.
Dating or Marrying your mirror image means you will most likely understand your partner’s needs and desires -as they are similar to your own: these ingredients make for a compatible partner who “gets you.”
“Love is when you can find your thoughts in your partner’s mind” –Unknown.
Challenges: Being with someone who is just-like-you can also have its drawbacks. Unless you both productively challenge each other, the relationship may not push you toward growth –stagnation may arise from such familiarity. Knowing someone so well is also fertile ground for mind-reading, making assumptions, and projecting – patterns that can easily lead to negativity, communication breakdown, and even fighting: After all, knowing someone so well means that you also know how to manipulate and/or hurt them the most…
Highlights: Being in a romantic relationship with someone who is entirely different from you has many benefits. First, you can learn from your partner and experience new perspectives by being forced out of your comfort zone. In Opposites Attract relationships; your partner may compliment your shortcomings, and you may compliment theirs. It is commonplace to feel a balance – a Yin and Yang quality to your coupling. Opposite Attract relationships offer growth opportunities, not only for the couple as a whole but also for each individual within the pairing.
“Offer me something I cannot find in myself” -Rachel Wolchin
Challenges: When you do not have much in common with your partner, it can lead to distance and conflict. You may feel that they do not understand you or know how to comfort you. You may spend a lot of time apart because you have different interests. Your values and goals may not align, which could eventually result in a pattern of trying to change one-another.
In Opposites Attract coupling, it is possible to get to a point where you feel you don’t or can’t agree on anything. These behaviors may lead to feelings of resentment and disappointment due to unmet needs and idealized expectations.
The Long Haul
So, which team is more successful when it comes to the game of love? As there are strong proponents for both sides, the ultimate answer continues to remain a mystery. Whatever the equation, the secret to long-lasting relationships seems to involve being on the same page. This involves growing together, resolving issues as they come up, and most importantly- loving with all of your heart!
Regardless of how similar or different you are, it is honesty, trust, respect, and having realistic expectations of one another that create the cornerstones of a happy and healthy home.