How our Inevitable Fear of Life prevents us from commitment
Commitment & Intimacy
Commitment in a relationship is not just hard for men, it is for everyone. When I say commitment, I’m not just talking about getting married, being in a monogamous relationship, buying a house, having a dog and kids together. It has to do with commitment to yourself and to life itself. It’s being intimate with your partner on a profound level that few people achieve, yet everyone has the capacity.
Whether your Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Buddhist, Atheist or Agnostic and you’ve read the Bible or the Qu r’an a hundred times or that you believe in reincarnation or none of the above. No one REALLY knows for a fact what happens when we die. You can believe all you want, but you’ll never be able to be 100% sure of the outcome. The only thing we are actually sure of is that we are born, we live and then we die. That is one of the reasons that people are afraid of truly living.
Fear of Life
True commitment to life is investing your entire self to making the most of the few years we have on Earth. It’s feeling joy, sadness, anger, passion, love, having a good taste of what life has to offer us. You could think that it’s an easy task to achieve for most, but think again. Since we only have one life to live that we are sure of, we could imagine that we would all want to be happy and enjoy it to the fullest. What most people don’t want to admit in enjoying life to its fullest is that it comes with a huge risk…you lose it all when death comes knocking at your door. That’s a hard feat for anyone to accept and go through.
Commitment to your partner
What does commitment to your partner have to do with death or our fear of life? Commitment to a relationship is putting effort and hard work into building something with that person. These « team projects » that you co-create with your lover bring lots of joy, sometimes disappointments and at the end you feel a sense of accomplishment. You grow closer, more intimate and your feelings deepen for one another. The love you have for yourself, your partner and potentially your kids create a sense of fulfilment. Knowing that you may never know or feel that sensation again can be quite scary. It’s quite understandable not to want to lose such a thing, so better to never have it at all. Therefore, people escape from commitment to a partner not so much because of the hardships it sometimes entails, but of the happiness it can make us feel.
How can I overcome this?
Some may want to know how you get passed your fear of life and commit to yourself, your partner and life! Unfortunately, there is no easy answer, because we all have to go through and passed our anxiety of death in our own way. Each of us has chosen a path to take and we have to live with the good and the bad of each of the situations.
Francois Renaud M.A.