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Love & Hate

By Kenda-Ruth Stumpf

There is a close alignment between love and hate. It would seem to many that love is a great barrier to hate, but the opposite is true. The barrier created by love is to indifference.

Only the agapé form of love exists in a complete absence of hatred. But the other forms, eros in particular, live a hair's breadth from hate. Love and hate are the opposing ends of a thread which unlike an unbendable line can come together just as 11:59 is next to 12:00. A couple who chose each other for a life commitment has an attachment and expectation for one another that do not exist in relationship with others. Unmet expectations by strangers, organizations, acquaintances and even friends do not carry the same weight of importance or meaning as those expectations that a partner fails to meet. We ask more of our partners and they promise us more than anyone else. Perhaps we expect a kind stranger to help us when our car breaks down and we are stranded, but we do not expect the stranger to pay for our repairs, feed us or shelter us--and we may be rather embarrassed if the stranger offers. Our expectations do not go beyond assistance in starting our vehicle, use of a cell phone or a lift to the nearest service station.

Hatred is beyond dislike--it may not even include dislike. It is an emotion that lashes from a feeling of desperation, entrapment and a loss of control. Often the motivation behind hateful actions is to get the target to stop or change their mind or actions. MLCers, in their abandonment, remove the option of choice from their partner, initiating a feeling of disempowerment. Your MLCer left you with a gaping wound and has told you that you can do nothing to fix or change it. He's calling the shots now and is refusing to allow you equal voting power. You feel helpless and hopeless and in desperation you may respond like a cornered animal--claws out, teeth bared. Your actions are protective, even when you are on the offense. You need to take back your power and agapé is empowering, whereas self-pitying victim attitudes or acts of hatred such as retribution and vengeance are disempowering. They may initially feel powerful, but this is because they steal power from others and true power is a gift from God that comes from within.

An MLCer's actions can be cruel because their aim is for pain with the intention of hurting you so that you will hate them, lose hope and give them what they want.

I'm Kenda-Ruth and I believe in marriage.
Are you tired of hearing...
  • Once a cheater always a cheater?
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