“It has been said that it’s the space between the bars that holds the tiger. And it’s the silence between the notes that makes the music. It is out of the silence, or “the gap,” or that space between our thoughts, that everything is created including our own bliss.” ~ Dr. Wayne W. Dyer
It is quite natural for people to get bored with constant togetherness of even their most loved ones and wish to have some time exclusively to themselves so that they can pursue their interests, hobbies or passions uninterrupted.
Several very sound arguments are offered in favor of creating personal space in family life.
Why You Should Make Room for Personal Space in Your Relationships
1. We are unique individuals
We are all born unique. We cannot blossom out- truly feel happy- if our individuality or uniqueness does not take its natural course to grow or is cramped for the sake of peace and harmony in relationships of love and marriage.
2. Staying together all the time can be suffocating
Sometimes, both the partners are involved in the same family business or are employed in the same office. They stay together round the clock which leaves them no time to talk or spend time with anyone else. It is like being handcuffed together to the same chain. It can be really boring, even painful even if they are a perfectly made-up-for-each- another couple.
3. Personal space essential for ‘being oneself’
It is true that we quite often long for peaceful moments in complete seclusion. Sometimes, we wish to indulge in very natural, human weaknesses that may be embarrassing in presence of our loved soul mates. Some people wish to view porn but do not like their partners to know lest they hurt their sensitivities.
4. Personal space- a matter of right
Some people insist upon having personal space as a matter of right. With the liberalization and increasing, consciousness of personal rights more and more people are seeking personal space in relationships.
There can several other reasons for personal space as different as the individuals themselves.
But how about people who have no time for personal space
There are people– and mind! they are not in minority—who do not think of enjoying the luxury of personal space even if they can afford to have it. In fact, they are often encouraged by their partners and family members to get some time off for themselves, but they just ignore.
These people do not belong only to what we call as the ‘traditional’ lower/ middle-class families or those who remain perpetually worried about their next meal but also those who are economically well-off.
While ‘traditional’ people are found more in the eastern world, there is no shortage of them in the flourishing western world as well.
This is illustrated by a famous article “The Top 5 Regrets Of The Dying” written by Bronnie Ware, an Australian palliative nurse. Her duty was to take care of the “patients in the last 12 weeks of their lives.”
This is what she observes about her patients:
“This (regret) came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their children’s youth and their partner’s companionship. Women spoke of this regret——- and the men who deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence.”
What kind of people are they?
These are the people who almost drown themselves in discharging their duties towards their families, spouses, and kids. Some partners especially wives are so devoted to their families and kids that they just live for them and for no other purpose, as it were.
They hardly get time to think of their personal needs and wear themselves out physically and emotionally. Thinking of creating a personal space away for such people is nothing short of sin.
Beautiful men and women with majestic features, once the envy of those who looked upon them, do not even know when they have withered away.
How to create space for such people?
Let us first realize that if we profess to genuinely love our spouse/love partner we should first think of their need for personal space before thinking of the same for ourselves. We should provide reasons, situations, and opportunities for them to find time to create some space for themselves.
We should prod them to explore their heart and soul to know if they love to do anything besides just working for their families. Observe what they could love to do if given a chance and coax them to do the same.
Allow differences of opinion as a matter of right of your partner. That is an index of our love. If we do not do that it means we do not genuinely love them. Who else will allow them to think and act differently if we, who profess our love, do not? This is the privilege we owe to those we love.
But here is a thought which, honestly speaking, often keeps nagging me whenever I think of the issue of personal space.
This is not to dispute the benefits of personal space especially for those who appear to have become prison mates rather than soul mates or just workaholics.
Think of the traditional housewife who, loves you more than her own life, spends the whole live-long day cleaning, cooking, washing, buying groceries and doing all the tiring odd jobs. She keeps looking forward to the time when her dear hubby would step into the house, kiss her, hug her and spend a few moments for a heart-to-heart talk. And the man says he is tired and wants space to be alone.
Or, think of the man who spends the whole day on the treadmill of work so that his wife and kids may have a comfortable life at home! He returns home so he can get a warm cup of coffee from the wife he loves so much, but finds she is away having time for her space.
Would it not be a sin to think of personal space if you live with people who love and care for you so much? Would you like your partner to be one of those who dies in the care of some palliative nurse regretting all the labor of love they spent in worrying and working for you who loved their space more than those who almost gave up their lives for your comfort?
Would you not regret having tried to find personal space for self because you thought it was essential for you for howsoever convincing a reason than providing love, space and time to someone who spared no pain for your comfort and pleasure?