Saturday, 28 June 2014

True Love, primal yurts and the people who're airbrushed out of fairy tale books

While I was at The Pause I read Call Off The Search by Anna (Pasternak) and Andrew Wallas.  Why? Because Danielle suggested I might find it interesting.  She runs courses with Andrew Wallas and says he’s a good guy.  So I did.  It wasn’t as if I had anything else I was burning to read: I haven’t read anything lately that has rocked my boat, that has really made me think or feel. 

It seemed a bit familiar and then I remembered that I’d read an extract from it in a supplement when it first came out.  It had annoyed the hell out of me.  So I guess that’s one very good reason to read it, huh?  What annoyed me?  Well, the book is all about how you shouldn’t ever give up on a relationship; that you have to work through the fights and the anguish and the tough times.  That love relationships can easily call up your ‘core wounding’ – that early first pattern of hurt and disappointment we suck in with our mother’s milk – and offer a wonderful opportunity to heal at a deep, primal level.  Which is all very stoic and good except that…Andrew Wallas left his relationship.  He told Anna Pasternak she was a posh spoilt insecure bitch, got her sobbing in his yurt and then had this sudden ‘ka-boom!’ realisation that she was his One True Love.  So, what did he do?  He left his wife.  Just like that.   All very amicable apparently but still…

Marriage neatly dissolved, the whole book is all about how he and new ‘True Love’ Anna work out their stuff.  It's about how they fight and bicker and nearly break up all the time, how they love each other but also sometimes hate each other; and how that can all change in a heartbeat.  Bottom line, they just slog it out with brutal honesty.  Which is great.  I mean, good for them…but, but, but… all the way through I was left wondering ‘And what about his ex-wife?’ 
The relationship, he says, was ‘emotionally empty’.  So then, it’s okay to walk out of a relationship if it’s ‘emotionally empty’?  I dunno, it just seemed all a bit too convenient somehow.  How do you know if your relationship is ‘emotionally empty’?  Maybe emotionally empty is a manifestation of core wounding?  Bottom line, how do you know if it’s doomed, terminal, that it’s time to pack up your yurt and move on, or whether you should stay, drive in your yurt pegs a bit deeper and sledgehammer away at it?  A&A just don’t answer that question.  So I was left pondering it myself. 

Maybe it’s about a ‘charge’?  If a relationship still has ‘juice’?  As the saying goes it’s a thin line between love and hate but both are positive emotions, right?  As in emotions that have a positive charge, that are powerful, punchy, full-on.  I’ve always felt that the true opposite of love isn’t hate but apathy.  If a relationship has become apathetic, if the parties involved are just going through the motions, presumably that is what A&A are calling time on?  Can you give apathy an adrenalin shot?  Can you juice it up?  Or should you just sigh and move on?  What if your core wounding has left you unable to love?  


I don’t know. I really don’t.  All I know is that, all through the book, I kept wondering when we were going to hear about his first marriage.  I wanted to know what happened to his ex-wife.  Did she find ‘True Love’ as well, or is she sitting somewhere reading the book and shoving her fingers down her throat over each gushing paragraph?  How did she feel when he told her it was all over?  Was she gutted or secretly relieved?  Did she punch the air and go, ‘Yessss!  I always hated that fucking yurt!’ 

I guess I wanted to hear about how one lives when the projections of falling in love fall away.  That, to me, is the more interesting question.  A&A are clearly still madly passionately in love.  Will they still feel the same way in twenty years? Is that True Love?  What is? 

I wasn’t intending to write this blog post.  There was a bit in the book, a concept that intrigued me and I was going to blog about that but this came out instead.  But, hey, it is what it is.  What do you think? 


10 comments:

Midlife Singlemum said...

Bottom line - whatever sells a book, makes you feel important, results in some speaking engagements and other appearances, a few articles.... It's about making money who cares about he truth.

mumasu said...

Can't say it any better than Singlemum

Exmoorjane said...

I dunno...whenever something irritates me, I take a closer look as it's often a bit of shadow stuff going on (and I confess I did a lot of wincing while reading it as I confronted my inner Anna Pasternak). :)

Yes, it's a business for sure but there's also some good stuff in there.

Exmoorjane said...

I mean, what do you guys reckon on the question - do you ship out or stick with it, if a relationship is emotionally empty?

Elizabeth Musgrave said...

It all sounds a bit convenient for me. Who says a relationship is emotional empty? Did his wife think so too? What if one person is happy in the relationship? Did he tell her what her felt? Why not give that relationship the chance to slog through the pain and difficulty to find deeper meaning? Relationships don't start off empty so if they become so, how does it happen? Is it reversible? I imagine so if the people in the relationship care enough about each other and about the relationship itself. Don't get me wrong, I have seen relationships that are so toxic they should be left but that is a different thing. My internal alarm rings at what you describe in this book. Something self serving is going on, maybe.

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Exmoorjane said...

@Elizabeth. You know, I hadn't realised how negative that post of mine came across until I re-read it. Actually there was a lot of good in the book - I just wanted to know more. As you say, what did his wife feel? What DO you do if one person is happy and the other is not? And yes, is it reversible? If so, how? If a relationship is truly toxic, then the issue is pretty clear-cut, I think. But if it's just, as he puts it, empty? Then what? When should people struggle on and when should they pull the plug?

Exmoorjane said...

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