Note: I do my best to not assume gender in my discussions of polarity. When I say "a feminine person," I am referring to a person who identifies with the feminine expression and who is working toward embodying the feminine pole. The feminine pole refers to the fully embodied feminine expression as understood in the context of a polarized relationship. A feminine person can switch out of her feminine pole consciously or unconsciously at any time. The same is true for the masculine person working to embody the masculine pole. The use of pronouns refers to a person's chosen expression rather than their gender.
Mothering in Polarized Relationships
Back to the elephant in the room I discussed in my expectations blog. Mothering, also called nurturing, is not a feminine expression. This is a hard shift to make and can be quite triggering for some, hence it's elephant status. This is a shift I am still making and practicing. This blog was inspired by a story that unfolded which demonstrates my efforts to apply this learning.
But first, let's get into what mothering is and how it is not a feminine expression.
Mothering is when a feminine person attempts to guide a masculine person into self care . A more degrading term for this is "nagging." We see this motherly nagging all of the time in our culture. It is portrayed almost as if it were an inevitable way of relating between a couple. The masculine person lacks self care, the feminine person nags him into it, and the masculine person resents her for it. Rinse and repeat.
Yet, this is not so in a polarized dynamic. When a feminine person is fully embodied in her polarity, she trusts the masculine person to care for himself. She knows that she can express how she feels about his lack of self care and that her expression will inspire him to check his inner boundaries and adjust them if he deems it appropriate. She does not express her feelings as a way to manipulate him into self care. There is a slight, yet powerful, difference. The feminine is responsible for a self evaluation of the motives behind her expression. She knows that the masculine will pick up on it, even if subconsciously, and he will most likely act out in response to it.
The unfolding of the events below demonstrates these concepts.
The Devoted was outside one morning, shoveling the driveway for ourselves and our landlord. He had both of our cars running and had pulled them up so he could clear our parking spaces.
At first, as I looked out at him from our second story window, I felt immense love and gratitude. I felt so supported by his stewarding. In my heart there was such appreciation for him. The warmest place in my heart was a feeling of deep thankfulness for the fact that my car was running. It is a well used car that does not get much action in the winter. Seeing it running and well cared for made my heart swell with recognition of his devotion to it, and to me vicariously. All of this was being done out of his own inspiration, with no direction from me or expectation on my part. I felt honored by the love and devotion he willingly chose to offer.
Yet, these feelings were fleeting when I noticed he was cleaning off the car without gloves! His gloves were in his back pocket and I found myself saying out loud, "you idiot! Take care of your hands!!!" As I felt myself become deeply upset by his lack of care for his poor cold hands, I felt inspired to share with him how I felt.
After over a year of polarity work, I knew that I had to get down to the feeling before expressing to him. The feeling quickly presented itself. I felt concerned. I was excited that I had found a feeling to express so quickly and that I was working to use feminine expression rather than simply berating him for what I had deemed to be a negligent choice.