Is Love Blind?
Submitted by Fr. Brendan on Mon, 04/04/2011 - 8:37am.
The blind man in today’s gospel was touched by Jesus, the light of the world. He needed Jesus in order to see. How have we been led by the Light of the World? How has Jesus helped us to see?
Where does blindness fit into dating or marriage? In a perfect world, it wouldn’t be very much of a thing at all. Unfortunately this typically isn’t the way it happens to work out. We always have to dig deep within ourselves making sure that we aren’t making assumptions based on our blindness and letting those prejudices spill over into our interactions.
Obviously blindness is a part of our lives. When we enter into a relationship with another person, blindness becomes an element in the relationship. We have to confront it within the context of the association. We need to be honest about how we feel that our blindness or visual impairment will affect the situation, answer any questions and keep communicating until both people are comfortable with it. If your partner never becomes reasonably comfortable with blindness or visual impairment, it may be time to move on. I am including both people whether one or both are blind. Sighted people are not the only ones who have misconceptions about what being blind.
Allowing blindness or visual impairment to dictate who we date, what we need from our partner or who we think might be interested in us, will most likely end up being an unhealthy relationship. Isn’t the objective to find someone who we respect, admire, enjoy, and love? Sure there is an element of taking care of our partner, but that goes both ways.
Hazardous blind areas in marriage and relationships can destroy us. First, we fail to genuinely commit to our relationship. We do not want to share time, talk about our problems, share mutually in cultivating each others’ personal goals and dreams, and avoid intimacy. We do not communicate with honesty. We either fear being rejected, fear hurting our spouse, and fear criticism. Too often we do not ask for what we want and need. We end up dumping our emotional baggage onto our spouse.
Just as Jesus cured the blind man, we too can find the ability to see again. Here are seven ways to maintain mutual love and respect and find your common vision by Maribel Belaval of Family Bridges:
First, believe in each other’s uniqueness. Second, have unconditional respect for negotiating differences without unhealthy superiority of one or the other. Third, authentic communication without fear of rejection, which gives permission to be honest, integrated, and vulnerable enough to say “I’m sorry.” Fourth, having the confidence in yourself, your spouse and your relationship to resolve differences together. Fifth, mutual support in achieving self-development. Sixth, celebrate as a couple, play together by sharing in hobbies, games, exercise, dance, love and intimacy. Finally, share in laughter and humor at the history of growth in the relationship.
As Catholics we believe that couples join their lives together to become one in God’s love. In this way we celebrate marriage as sacrament to our world. But to accomplish this, spouses must work on their relationship. We invite you to enrich your relationship and sign up for our marriage program St. Pius V. You will not regret it. Call the parish office (312) 226-6161 to sign up.
(Portions of this article were taken from Maribel Belaval of Chicago Family Bridges, of which St. Pius V is a proud partner: www.chicagofamilybridges.com.)