Adapt and Relate

Hi everyone,

I hope you all had an awesome week. I had a good but tiring one.

The most prominent topic in my mind this week has been how much close relationships mean adaptation. My new and first cat reminded me this.

Before I got him, I was thinking that he would come home and just hang out. I would just live as I did before, except for feeding him and cleaning his litter box. But now, I have to adapt my sleep schedule to a certain extent and I have to organize my mornings and evenings so that I can spend time playing with him. These are things that I did not really consider much and they have been probably the more difficult aspects. All of this to say, there was a good amount of adaptation even with a cat, which is probably one of the easier living creatures to deal with. What happens with human relationships? As we all know, humans are notoriously complicated beings.

Human relationships require a lot of adaptation. I have not always been aware of that. Since I have lived by myself for a long time, I formed a somewhat inflexible lifestyle, which made it difficult for me to adapt to people or situations at times. I hope this has changed or is changing now, because being able to adapt is a major part for any human relationship. This is important because no two humans are the same and will have their own patterns of life. These can sometimes be incompatible and in this case, some adaptation to meet in the middle ground is needed. Sometimes, one party in the relationship cannot make changes for various reasons. Then, the other party might have to change. Some change and some adaptation is good (Caution: not to a level where we would lose our self identity).

What do you think about adaptation in relationships? Can you and do you? Where do you draw the line? Let’s chat.


37 thoughts on “Adapt and Relate

      1. That’s a tough one but I think it evolves over time. I guess if it’s something that keeps you up at night then it’s worth fighting for. Maybe it’s a form of adaptation but for me it’s more of a case of “don’t sweat the small stuff.”

  1. It may well be that the most complex of all human relationships is that of marriage between women and men. From personal experience I feel that there needs to be a strong willingness on the part of partners in marriage to understanding each other’s differences. With this attitude they begin a journey of discovery which bears lasting fruit. Such a relationship has the potential to touch their offspring, friends, workmates and even their community. Adaptation can be managed without emotion, true understanding requires emotion. Perfect understanding flows from the greatest of all emotion – love. Years ago I read John Gray’s, “Men are from Mars Women are from Venus.” I was impressed at the time, but never applied any of John’s philosophy to my my marriage. Just over a year ago I sat with my wife in a hospital where a medical professional pronounced what sounded like a death sentence over my wife. Stage four cancer in her lungs, breast and lymph glands. I openly wept from shock. Since that moment I had the strongest desire to be the best husband possible to her. None of the many caring souls that I approached could really offer me a definitive strategy for being the best husband to the woman I love. I believe my inner divinity gave me the coaching I needed and together we have fought this condition to a place of victory. I would never claim to know the pain and suffering she has borne in this last year, but I have been, and will always be, the best husband. I have her permission to say so. Much of the information I needed was from John’s book; which was understanding my wife in her condition, with love.

    1. Such a nice explanation! I am sure you are the best husband to her! One thing I would disagree, though, I accept to adapt only if I form an emotional connection. Otherwise, I do not bother. To me, adaptation follows emotional connection. But that is because I am not the most flexible person in general.

  2. There are people who adapt to the point of losing themself and there people who refuse to adapt at all. I suppose they make for a complementary pair but I’m not a person who could be happy that way.

    My ideal relationship starts out with two people who are somewhat close together in temperament already and then meet each other half way. The best compromise is not to average everything out but rather to sometimes do things your way and others mine. By being in the same ballpark to begin with, nobody get stuck in doing something they detest.

    This is even true of pets. Your pet adapts to you as much as you adapt to your pet. Low energy people probably should not have high energy pets. They become overwhelmed. Likewise, high energy people can overwhelm a low energy pet. Basset hounds do not do well on long runs and dalmatians go nuts in an apartment.

    OTOH, there are cases (rare) where opposites attract and a reliable conservative pairs up with a risk taking bon vivant. It can work if each takes from the other the things they are missing. Each person’s strength supplements a weakness in the other, so together they make a powerful team. This kind of dynamic balance is difficult to achieve because both parties have to accept that some of their their natural inclinations are indeed weaknesses that can be reinforced by the other. I’m not sure if this is a suspension of ego or the existence of a very secure ego.

    And. as always. YMMV,

  3. I think I lost myself in my horrible marriage. When I finally woke up and got him out, I had no idea who I was anymore. That’s not love; that’s manipulation! I’m still trying to figure this out several years later, but I know this: If you love someone and they love you in the way they should, then it’s easier to find that balance and make each other better people. I don’t know if I’ll ever find that, and maybe it’s just a romantic notion, but I’d really like to love and be loved as me, and not who I was warped into.

  4. A nice big shrug, even a little eye roll, go a long way towards adapting to other people. Can’t force people to be who we want them to be. Best just to accept them the way they are. Unless, of course, they have intolerable immoral traits. There’s a time to adapt and a time to walk away, too.

    1. That is true but accepting someone else as they are means changing some things about your life, i.e. adapt. I think both parts should change a bit to match the other person’s needs.

      1. And the corollary to that is that they have to adapt by looking the other way when I do finally lose it as a reward for my trying so hard.

  5. Hello Betul,

    Adaptation is absolutely required within our relationships; for I don’t think they can healthfully survice if persons are not willing to bend, yield, and learn from one another. Through this process, there is tremendous opportunity for growth and–most importantly–the expression of love. 🙏

  6. Definitely, @PointlessOverthinking adaptation is important in a relationship. Especially where I come from. In Asian countries, women are brainwashed into thinking that they need to adjust to Every situation that come up in their marriage. Although that’s not the case.
    Marriage is like a See-Saw. Both the riders have to balance and sacrifice something, only than they’ll be able to manage and have a successful marriage.

  7. Oh yes, we constantly need to adapt in any relationship as they (we) change over time. I believe the key is communication. It’s difficult to the make the changes necessary to accommodate one another if you don’t communicate your needs/wants. Unfortunately cats are hard to read, although it seems they are very self content creatures too. (Perhaps that’s why?) Thanks Betul 🙏

    1. Agreed to communication as key. As for cats, the reason why they are not that difficult is that (I think) they are very blunt about what they want and don’t want. I tend to think that they are easy to read. But also, I grew up in a country with possibly the most number of cats lol. Google cats and Turkey and you will see

  8. Great post. For me life is a matter of constantly balancing and adapting to ever-changing social and natural environments. To not adapt or continuously balance goes against reality and enables suffering. Take care, my friend.

  9. Beautiful insights Betul! I think that we always need to adapt to people, places, and situations. Sometimes it is not easy at all, and we shall remember the saying that a discussion is about to find out what is right and not who is right. Cristiana

  10. The wisest wisdom I have ever been given was to “just humour her” when ever I disagree about a way of doing things with my partner.

    Adapting this mentality has helped resolve a lot of conflict because either she is right and I will adapt to her style, or she will see that my way is better and we will adapt to mine. Either way, one of us is adapting as we become ever more connected.

  11. To me adaptation in a relationship means imbibing all the good qualities that are in your partner while retaining your qualities and also letting your partner have free will to adopt the qualities that you bring to the table. Also, with continuous learning, experimentation and experience, keep evolving to bring peace, harmony, and love to the relationship😊

  12. Together time is priceless. It is wonderful to share your life with someone else as long as both partners give each other the space they need. Personal aspirations need to be supported and encouraged. You are allies as well as a couple.

  13. Very well said #PointlessOverthinking , it is so True that No two People are the same, they’ll have different ‘Life Styles’ , ‘Likes’, ‘Dislikes’, Personality; and we all Must consider that. As soon as we have trained ourselves to Peacefully Co-Exist and Focus on the things we love about the other person, rather than fight on the differences, We are Ready for taking up a relationship.

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