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Taking Care of Gay Relationships

Save Yourself First

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One of your most important life lessons came from the last flight you took. If you're anything like millions of yearly airline passengers that ignore (in annoyance) the safety demonstrations from the flight attendant, you probably missed one of the most important relationship lessons you'll ever hear. The announcement is something to the affect of, "In the event the airplane cabin loses pressure, oxygen masks will drop from the overhead compartment... Make sure your mask is completely secured before assisting others." This announcement is essential to the survival of gay relationships, yet few heed the warning.

At first, the message may seem to encourage a self-serving attitude, but the true reason the overly-friendly flight attendant asks you to save yourself first is because you can't do anyone (including yourself) any good if you're lying face down on that nasty airplane carpet gasping for air. By maintaining your health and strength in case of emergency, you not only have a better chance of survival, but greater ability to help others.

When it's hard to breathe in our gay relationships, we have a tendency to try and help our partners first- ignoring our own needs. We offer our partners all of our crucial emotional, physical and mental reserves in hopes of saving them and the relationship from disaster. The result is then two people in a state of emergency left weak and resentful. Inevitably, the relationship crumbles beyond repair as both parties struggle for the needed support and attention that neither one can provide. When we secure our own supply of air, we have a better chance of saving our significant other and, in turn, our relationship.

Relationships aren't easy, especially gay ones in which emotions seem to intertwine at an accelerated rate. Even when your relationship seems fine, put your mask on first. Focus on your emotional, physical and mental strength all while encouraging your partner to care for his own. That way, if either one of you should need to tap into the other's reserve, neither of you are completely depleted. Repair the now and strengthen yourself in order to secure your relationship and the future.
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