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2016-04-03 11:12 pm (UTC)
What do these words mean to you, if and when you use them for your relationships?
Family are the people I want to visit me in the hospital. Family are the people I would ask for help if I needed it (e.g., recovery from major surgery). Some family are partners. Partners are people I made a commitment to, the commitment varies but usually includes "I will do my best to continue our relationship in a mutually satisfying form" where the alternative is "I make no commitment to work things out if I decide it's time for me to not be in a relationship with you."
Do they have implications about what sorts of things you can rely on someone for, or what they can rely on you for?
I prefer not to have implications but to negotiate and state expectations, but sure, implications creep in. I think the big one for me is that family can ask. Family can ask for help, for social time together, for recognition and acknowledgement. And I will give serious consideration before saying no. Whereas with more distant/less intimate relationships my default answer is no, and a yes requires consideration.
Are there expectations of willingness to perform emotional labor, or physical labor, or provide resources? (In exceptional circumstances? As a normal pattern?)
I think there are expectations, on all sides, but from my side, I try to take people's demonstrated capabilities and willingness into account, and I try to be honest about what I am capable of providing. Generally YES all of these things are part of being in a more intimate relationship than that of friendship or co-worker, for example.
Are there expectations of where the relationship fits in daily life?
Not from me, because I am very clear about what I want in daily life and I communicate it. It's challenging to be in relationship with people who don't communicate the way I do, but almost all of my family/partner relationships are in that category.
Of there being particular emotions that tend to come from the relationship?
I at least like very much all the people in my family and I love my partners. I love most of my family. I hope they feel that way about me, but I count as family at least one person that is changeable and ambiguous due to mental health issues: sometimes zie hates me, and sometimes zie doesn't like me, and zie certainly doesn't want to spend time with me most of the time. Still family to me, though.
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