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Balanced Relationships
                     by Dr. Mark Pitstick

Dr. Karl Menninger said, "Love cures people. Both the ones who give it and the ones who receive it." Healthy relationships help us grow toward balance and enlightenment. A relationship with another person is a sacred privilege to be appreciated and enjoyed. Like a garden, relationships need to be cultivated; those who nourish and respect significant others gain flowering results.

Of marriage, Kahil Gibran says, "let there be spaces in your togetherness…Love one another, but make not a bond of love: Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls… And stand together yet not too near together: For the pillars of the temple stand apart, And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadows."

Commitment is one of the most important aspects of a good relationship. W.H.Murray stated, "Until one is committed there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness… the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred." A real sense of freedom and openness to growth occurs when we know another person really loves and accepts us. Marriage can be the highest form of relationship as two persons make a vow to persevere through better or worse.


I’m not, however, recommending marriage for all persons and in all situations. Some persons barely tolerate each other in a marriage that was a mistake in the beginning. One elderly lady, who was contemplating suicide, confessed "I haven’t loved my husband for 40 years but we stayed together because that’s what we were taught." The "we’ll make it work if it kills us" attitude aptly describes the stress-related illnesses that predominate in a long-term negative relationship.

Continuing an empty shell of a relationship for the sake of following religious, social, or moral convention benefits no one. Obtain marital or pastoral counseling during troubled times. But if a bond is truly unhappy after years of trying, let it go and find a better partner. Life is too short to live in an unhappy and destructive relationship.


No one is perfect so focus on the good in each other instead of amplifying the less desirable points. Most relationships go through tough times. Those who weather temporary storms often come through them stronger and wiser. Strong winds that bend but don’t break a tree make it stronger, more flexible, and more prepared for the next gusts.

A healthy sex life is an important part of a couples’ relationship. Finding a balance is, as always, the key. Past generations were indoctrinated with guilt and didn’t enjoy vibrant sexuality. More recent generations have gone too far the other way and made sex another aerobic sport with promiscuity replacing past puritanical restrictions. Experience the joy of sex in a loving and safe setting and in moderation. Sex is an excellent way to feel alive, share intimacy, and enjoy blissful states.

One of the building blocks of a healthy relationship is realizing the divinity within each other. In Life Is For Loving, Butterworth writes "Love is not to be found. It consists not in finding the right person but in becoming the right person… True marriage comes about as two people sense and see in each other something of the divine potential that is always present beyond appearances. This leads to a mutual commitment to help each other mate with one’s God-self.

When a relationship does end—by death or separation—remember that a heart can only be broken when it’s closed and hardened. Keep your heart open and go through a period of mourning. Then, when you’re ready, find another. There’s more than one fish in the sea and more than one Soulmate for each of us. Some people remain in self-imposed isolation because of a deceased loved ones memory. Let the departed one move on and keep living.

One possible cause of "ghosts" occurs when departed Souls are held in limbo by loved ones who can’t accept their death. Let the deceased move on to the next realm; if you want, you will see them again. You can even continue an inter-dimensional relationship with them. I "talk" with my departed grandmothers, feel their support, and—in the inner quiet of my heart—hear their gentle counsel.


Recommended books for nourishing healthy relationships include: Life Is For Loving by Eric Butterworth; The Art of Loving by Erich Fromm; Courtshipafter Marriage by Zig Ziglar; Love and Living, Loving, and Learning by LeoBuscaglia; and Notes on Love and Courage and Notes to Myself by Hugh Prather.(excerpts from Balanced Living: Transforming Body, Mind, and Spirit by Mark Pitstick, M.A., D.C. 

For more information about Dr. Pitstick's work go to,

Susie and Otto Collins
P.O. Box 14544
Columbus, Ohio 43214
(614) 568-8282

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