TX Friendship

Posted by: Dr. Justin D'Arienzo, Psy.D., ABPP

1.  Friendship: Friendship is based on how well we know our partner. The Gottman’s defined the term for how well we know our partner as a love map.  Each of us has a love map. Truly knowing our partner is knowing their love map. Knowing our partner equates to understanding their likes and dislikes, knowing about their history and goals (including past traumas), and being knowledgeable about how they will act in given situations. It is also about knowing their interests and enjoyments, such as their favorite types of movies, favorite foods, and their hobbies. In addition to the knowledge that comes with knowing someone in an intimate relationship, there are many other tools that help us gain an understanding of our partner – tools such as personality tests, such as the Myers-Briggs, which tell us a lot about how our partners perceive and understand the world.

How can you work to build your love map with your partner? Understanding and knowing your partner as described above is a big step in building your love map. Ask yourself, do you admire your partner and express fondness toward them? Do you turn toward your partner?  For example, do you spend time together, do you express an interest in your partner’s perspective, do you share values, do you listen, is he or she your best friend? Getting to the point where you answer yes to all of these questions is a great way to build a strong love map.