One thing that has become increasingly clear to me over the years, is the decisive role of the Anima and the Animus in love relationships. The the original concept as formulated by C.G. Jung, points towards the anima as the feminine side within a man and the animus to be the masculine part within a woman. Working with relationship´s many facettes in therapy, the following psycho-cosmological law has crystallized for me:
The men/man that a woman attracts/is attracted to, represents and reflects the evolutionary state of her personal animus
The women/woman that a man attracts/is attracted to, represents and reflects the evolutionary state of his personal anima.
In practise this means that every human being creates and calls upon their partner in order to see one´s other side (which always has the opposite gender ) of Self in this external mirror. If you dare to look and live with the consequences: right there -bingo !- is your own Anima / Animus.
Nota bene: what you see is your Anima/ Animus in its current state of maturation, not in its fullest potential (unless you have developed its fullest potential within your Self. In that case, your Other Side would naturally reflect that level of beauty).
What one sees is not always too flattering or becoming (except for: it is all about becoming- the growth of what is lacking). No quest for truth can truly lead anywhere without the degree of courage it takes to look facts into the mirrored eye. In other words: if you are totally -or partially dissatisfied- with the quality of what you «get» in that magical mirror, in the form of your partner, then there is little point in hammering on -or wrestling with- the surface of the mirror.
This does also imply that if you want the « quality» of your partner (either current or potential, in the future) to change, you´d have to work on developing your own healthy, vital, beautiful (or whatever you desire) anima/animus. Thus, after a while (which could be short or long, or something in-between, all depending on how committedly you work on this), what you «get» in the mirror will change. You will attract different energies. Either from the partner that you already are with or from «new» people that drop into your life. All accordingly to the internal (r)evolution that you initiate within your Self.
And in the final consequence this leads us to understand that
every man and woman is Self-responsible for the quality of their lover(s).
This is terribly good news, as it brings power home where it belongs; to one´s Self-responsibility. One is NOT dependened on the other to change. Hooray and too bad: nobody to blame
The follow-up question is naturally: how DOES one do that work, how do I grow my anima / animus ? The first step is, as always: develop a consciousness that this internal entity does exist.
And second: not forget about it around the next corner (« remember to remember»). The third step: make a clear decision to work with it. Four: start investigating the psychological players in your family system that could be related to it:
>For women and their animus: relationship with their father, men «in the shadow» further down the ancestral lines (grand-fathers,). Possibly brothers (dead, still-born, aborted). Everything «fishy» around men and masculinity in the family system (sexual abuses). Black sheep.
Plus: earlier relationships with men (more for the pattern they reveal, then for their «causal» effect)
>For men and their anima: relationship with their mother, women «in the shadow» further down the ancestral lines (grand-fathers). Possibly sisters (dead, still-born, aborted). Everything «fishy» around women and feminity in the family system. Black sheep. Women that «sacrificed» themselves. Plus: earlier relationships with women (more for the pattern they reveal, then for their «causal» effect)
That would make an excellet start. «Working « with them could mean «inner journeys», constellations, whatever works. A good therapist might help, but is not vital, depending on the state of one´s own «inner therapist» (that is again a whole new story, haha....)
BTW: the same applies for one´s children. They are on one level reflections of the state of one´s own inner child. So: if one is not happy with one´s children, or some of their sides/ qualities, the question number No 1 would always be what that reflections tells about maturing processes that still need to happen within one´s own inner child.