We must love a person enough to allow for their needs. We must allow them to learn and struggle. We can be there when they need us, but let go of our need for control.Learning and experiencing this principle of unconditional love has not only brought me the most nourishing, lasting and beautiful friendships I have ever had, but has strengthened my relationship with my husband. He is secure in his place in my heart and my life. It is not a slot to fill, to be changed out at will. Our relationship exists because of the two of us.
When I realized that people were not objects there to fill the slots- best friend, husband, neighbor, acquaintance, etc. - my world expanded. The 'slots'- those places in my life, are infinite and beyond definition. As infinite as the number of people I may ever come in contact with.We can let go of requirements, and realize that just because we don't share views or don't see each other often, it does not make that person unworthy of care. We can also have everything in common and love intensely without the obsession of ownership and without endangering the relationships that we have.
When it comes to personal relationships, the choices aren't own or shun. There is love enough.