How to gain independence in a relationship?

Acharya Prashant
5 min readFeb 18, 2020

Question: Whenever I’ve tried to be independent in a relationship, I end up being indifferent. There is some bitterness. I’m unable to give a healthy space. How can one actually feel complete in aloneness?

Acharya Prashant: You go to a vegetable market. You want vegetables. And there are lots of shops, one after the other. You go to a particular shop. You like potatoes there. But the fellow is quoting too high a price. Obviously, you are not in love with the potato, you just like them. And potatoes are a commodity. They are here and they are there as well. You like these potatoes. The fellow is quoting too high a price.

Now, only two situations are possible. If the fellow comes down on the price, you get the potatoes and you consume them. And if the fellow quotes too high a price, you walk away with bitterness. In fact, even as you walk away, with a corner of your eye you keep looking back, in the hope that he might call you back, okay fine come back and take. You are looking over your shoulder and cursing him. Why can’t he just drop down a rupee? These are the only two alternatives.

Does anything else happen in a vegetable market? You either consume or you walk away with bitterness. These are the only two ways that we know. These are the only two ways of the lonely mind. And this is the story of the entire world. Everybody, there is no exception. If the other fellow is amenable, agreeable, he gets consumed. And equally, you too get consumed, because it’s a mutual thing. And if he is not agreeable, then there is bitterness. We do not know any third route.

So, this is everybody’s situation. If we give up on consumption, when consumption does not happen, the only option that remains is of bitterness. Either there is consumption or there is bitterness. Now, if consumption is not there, in the sense that one is trying to not to have a relationship, one is trying to be alone in some sense … The question says, “Whenever I have tried to be independent, I end up being indifferent. There is some bitterness. I am unable to give healthy space. How can one actually feel complete in aloneness?” The desires still remain.

You might have decided to not to consume for some reason, the price may be too high, somebody might have taught you that potatoes are not to be…

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