I regularly hear the couples I counsel wonder if they and their partner are compatible. Soul-mates. They seem to suggest that if they’re compatible, the relationship may work, but if they’re not compatible, the relationship will fail. They seem to want me to analyze them individually to see if they “fit” together.
Some couples describe compatibility as having similar enough tastes and preferences – “we like and value the same things.”
Others describe compatibility as complimenting each other – “we just go together; like the right key to a lock.”
Some describe compatibility as not arguing, disagreeing, or fighting too much – “we get along well.”
I also hear couples, some of whom have been together for many years, wonder if they’re no longer compatible – “we’ve grown apart.”
What I’ve found in my work with clients, and in my own marriage, is that relationships change you. Relationships require growth. Relationships, particularly our most intimate ones, require that we become compatible.
As we become more intimately aware of our partner, and they of us, our needs & fears become known. We grow to “fit” each other.
What makes us incompatible is our refusal to grow together.
And by-the-way, rarely is my work with couples related to their compatibility. It’s usually based upon ways in which they are hurting or scaring each other…