There are 3 stages of relating, according to David Deida an international teacher and author, dependence, 50/50 or intimate communion. In his book Intimate Communion, he defines these stages according to the polarity differences between men and women and what most attracts.
In a Dependent Relationship what you may notice is that the couple often represents the extremes of what is considered masculine and feminine. He may look very macho and or his energy will be very masculine in a more stereotypic way. She may depict the extreme of what is considered feminine in a woman. Some images that come to mind are where the man throws the woman on the bed and takes her almost forcefully and she surrenders to his dominance. Partners may confuse some version of master/slave relationship with real love. She is the more passive of the two and often desires to feel vanquished. She might also desire to be seen as his property or his woman and her man.
“A Dependence Relationship involves partners who become dependent on each other for money, emotional support, parenting or sex. “
The sex in this type of relationship may be very good due to the extreme attraction between the two polarities and especially after a fight. Partners often end up feeling rather limited by the roles they are choosing to act out with each other and the relationship continues either with one or the other or even both parties needing to shift out of these roles. If they do they will want to learn to build personal boundaries and take care of themselves, rather than always catering to the needs of their partners.
“Safe boundaries and equal expectations for men and women.”
In this type of relationship, the partners want to feel safe and independent. You might recognize this type as our “modern” version of the relationship, which is most popular. It is thought to be very healthy as two independent people coming together and working out an equitable relationship. Both parties will want to feel that everything is equal.
“On the surface, they might seem completely turned off and react as if any form of forceful and passionate sexual ravishment is an act of rape. Deep down, however, they might be wistfully turned on, reminded of the depth of sexual loving that may be missing from their safe but lukewarm love life.”
Both may have their own income and together they divide everything 50/50, from household chores, parenting, and financial obligations. However, as many have discovered, there is a potential problem with this ideal sounding relationship. They may even find that their relationship is more about being best friends, companions and that the polarity between them is not very strong. If the woman feels her feminine self less and the man his masculine self less then the natural charge between the two people will be less and less. Often what occurs after the passion and sexual aliveness diminishes is a feeling of incompleteness. The inner longing to be met and be touched deeply never occurs and so eventually one or both partners may become dissatisfied with the relationship and they may look outside the relationship for its fulfillment.
“I relax into oneness and spontaneously give my deepest gift.”
If you grow beyond the 50/50 Relationship you are no longer cautious or afraid to give your love fully to your intimate partner. At times you may beg or desire to be ravished other times to be tender and sweet. Your intimate connection is filled with fire and sexual aliveness and the polarity between the two of you dances back and forth, as in a true tantric relationship. You consider your relationship an expression of your deepest love and are not afraid to go beyond your limits or to push your partner to his or her limits of that love. You actually are living a deeply fulfilling and intimate communion and a true sacred relationship.
“Most important, in the practice of Intimate Communion we learn that love is something you do, not something you “fall into” or “out of”. Love is something you practice, like playing tennis or the violin, not something you happen to feel or not.”
David Deida states that “ in this type of relationship you learn to practice loving even when you feel hurt, rejected or resistant. First, you practice love, and then your native sexual essence blooms, naturally, inevitably, because you are learning to give from your core, which includes the root of your sexuality.”