Song: If I didn’t have you (someone else would do)


If I didn’t have you by Tim Minchin.

An amusing reminder of reality, and – as Byron Katie would say – that life is kind.

It is refreshing to hear a song that is completely honest, and at the same time wise, kind and compassionate.

We may tell ourselves there is only one. And by living that lie, we make ourselves miserable, whether we are in or out of that relationship. If we are in the relationship, we are afraid of losing the other person. If we are not in that relationship, we grieve the loss of what was or what might have been.

Reality is far kinder. The reality is that someone else will do. Someone else will do as our partner. And there is especially one who will always do: ourselves. By finding compassion, sincere well-wishing, and peace with ourselves, we already have our perfect partner. Another person in our life is icing on the cake.

The song is also a reminder of what makes up a relationship between two healthy and mature individuals: We recognize reality, can share it with humor, wisdom, and kindness, and also value the relationship for all that is there. Rather than take anything away, it adds richness, appreciation, and poignancy to a relationship. It comes from, and deepens, our honesty and intimacy with ourselves and each other.

Of course, there is a slight taboo in our culture against admitting to the truth of this song. And that is one of the ways our culture keeps the lie that there is only one, or there can only be you in place. Sentimentality is suffering.

Much better, then, to recognize that belief and its consequences. Inquire into it. Find what is more honest for us. And bring that truth into our lives and relationships, with humor, wisdom and kindness.

Note: Another aspect of honesty in relationships.

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