I think there’s a thin line here: to me the key word is PRIMARILY. We are not and can’t be primarily responsible for our partners emotional happiness, but surely we can voluntarily opt in to take some responsibility. An emotion, at the end of the day is a perception, and we can take responsibility over the sensations we initiate that involve our partner. I find that I’m regularly offering counseling to friends, family and lovers on how to optimize mood and motivation, and more often than not, it’s very well received.
Lisa Feldman Barrett writes in her book about how we actually and inadvertently regulate each other’s “body budget,” which is code for homeostatic state. We are far more emotionally interdependent than we acknowledge. I’ve been researching the virtue of “sociability,” it’s a beautiful concept. There’s also emotional intelligence which is the ability to manage our emotions and those of others.
Merry Christmas!!!🎄 🎁🎄 I look forward to more of your writing in the new year.