Eleanor Butterworth – relationships specialist

Eleanor Butterworth – relationships specialist

00:00 / 30:51 minutes

Niki and Eleanor continue their discussion this week around what makes healthy relationships.

1:39 minutes – Niki introduces the fact that in Australia, New Zealand and America, mid-lifers are the biggest demographic represented in the Divorce statistics. And they are the only demographic that are increasing in divorce numbers

2:16 minutes – Niki quotes Gail Sheehy in her observation that in midlife men have historically sat back because their careers are established and they want to slow down while women, who have spent their time being wives and mothers are saying – it is my time. Hence the increasing gap in today’s mid-lifers.

2:45 minutes – Niki also introduces the idea of invisibility in relationships.

4:00 minutes – Eleanor begins a discussion on the importance of playfulness in long term relationships.

4:40 minutes – Both Niki and Eleanor discuss Esther Perel and her observations around relationships. Eleanor shares that in her own relationship they have learned to ‘take things outside’ and not sit and thrash things when issues come up. Doing things that are shared, relaxed and fun is often a great way to work through tough discussions

6:20 minutes – the introduction of the concept of kindness in relationships in this age of self.

7:13 minutes – getting out of your busyness and making creating memories in your relationships a priority. Making the time to really connect. The importance of having someone in your life who knows what their hopes and dreams are.

8:50 minutes – never thinking you know everything there is to know about your partner. Niki talks about her belief that we should always let our partners surprise us. Also not making assumptions about what our partners are thinking .

9:25 minutes – allowing change in our partners when we are so comfortable with the familiar. Not fearing our partners growing and developing. Focusing on growing ourselves.

11:08 minutes – Niki uses a Confucius quote that she loves -‘we have two lives – the second begins when we realise we only have one.’

11:35 minutes – the myth of the midlife crisis among men. The beginning of a discussion around relationships stagnating. Eleanor talks about the importance of investing in yourself first rather than projecting this onto your partner. Alain De Botton on relationships and his article ‘why you all marry the wrong person-. The mixing up of our problems in life with the other person.

14:40 minutes – going back to the wonderful things we did at the beginning of a relationship. refocusing on what we were attracted to in the beginning. Also not putting pressure on partners to be everything we need.

15:50 – Niki introduces the idea that we don’t want our partners to expect us to be everything so why do we expect different from them. The perils of believing you are responsible to make someone happy. Also the idea that how you are feeling personally can affect how you see everything including your relationship. Not projecting our shit onto those we are close to. Niki also talks about not making our partners our projects in an attempt to make them like we want and not becoming experts at our partners faults.

17:49 minutes – the belief around marriage and giving up our freedom. Eleanor talks about having adventures forever – some with our partners and some without.

19:20 minutes – Niki brings up Marianne Williamson’s concept that women have a habit of building a picture of what it is they want and shoving men into that picture without any consideration of what they may want.

20:25 minutes – maintaining your own identity in relationships. Not becoming part of each other. Getting rid of the idea that we have an expiry date particularly around women.

21;47 minutes – Eleanor challenges the idea of ‘broken homes’.

22:00 minutes – Niki discusses the importance of learning to be on your own so you don’t look to others to fulfill your needs. She also talks about what is said to single women and how they will find someone so then they will be happy.

23:45 minutes – Eleanor talks about not overloading our personal relationships. Niki shares an experience of a young couple fighting and it all stemming from unreal expectations. So giving in our relationships without expectations of what we want back.

25:50 minutes – we have to stop being frightened of interfering particularly when people are clearly distraught.

26:58 minutes – Niki asks the questions around women in particular feeling invisible in relationships. Eleanor says as a society we need to see age as wisdom and not as out of date.

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