In human relationships, appreciation and expectations work hand-in-hand.

This logic presumes, humans don't have any obligation to one another. No one can impose anything on another. That's the British classical liberalism philosophy.

That approach works in the society, but that alone is impossible in facilitating emotional relationship when we're inherently biased (we always overestimate our contribution to the relationship).

Let's talk on how we can handle the harmonious social interplay.

Liberals' Manipulation

The joy derived from an interaction or a gesture often precipitates appreciation, the intrinsic gratitude we feel compelled to extend to others. This is the reward mechanism in our relationships, and it functions beautifully when we consciously acknowledge the happiness we receive.

However, the underbelly of this mechanism reveals a disturbing pattern: social expectation without an underlying appreciation quickly spirals into toxicity, where one is constantly demanding more and the other growing resentment. One of the reasons why this is particularly potent in personal relationships is that these connections lack a concrete reward mechanism, unlike a work dynamic, where interactions are mediated by payments and hierarchy. Personal relationships are significantly 'flatter,' making it challenging to navigate these waters.

The structures seem flat on the surface, but if you look closely, they're mediated by hierarchies: desire for sex (ugly guy with beautiful), money (gold diggers), and desire to quit their inner loneliness (neurotics). Each partner is playing on the other's insecurity to get what they want.

Such manipulative behavior doesn't go that far. As you can imagine, women grow old, and men might lose jobs. Those are not adequate for a sustainable long-term secure relationship.

This is why appreciation should be engrained in our social transactions, while some level of expectation should be maintained. Contained within this balance are the healthy relationship with self-righteousness and social interplay.

Illusion of Acceptance Psychology

Popular discourses around psychology and humanism tend to promote an attitude of accepting insecurities- but this, in turn, is a self-indulgent narrative seeking to impose our expectations on others. You can do everything you want because other people should accept whatever you do. That narrative only works if you can come in and out of someone's life at ease and your place of cohabitance is large enough to have enough spaces.

Another challenge is to accept someone else's difference, you need to override the initial reaction. We're 2 human beings, with many differences. Acceptance can happen only when we are energetic, in a favorable mood, or a good physical state. The moment life challenge/stress sweeps away, the accepting capacity is washed away.

Lastly this narrative also strikes the logical incoherence why you should be with this person over another? If you have this big heart of accepting everything, why not accept everyone? That's the hippie drug party of the 60s.

At the end, the humanism promotor is telling us to dumb down our emotions.

Traditionalist View of Relationship

Historically, most relationships today operate on dumbing down our emotions. People stayed together so they divided the household work, or raise the children. In such relationship, self-righteousness of both parties might collide, but they both ignored that conflict to aim for the common purpose. Traditionalists promote tolerance based hierarchy beyond anything else.

That responsibility driven relationship is what Jordan Peterson promotes: to talk beforehand how they should act in public (expectation as a wife/husband), how much time they should spend on dating a week, and set up a rule with kids so you won't be mad, etc.

That's driven by clear goals and communication.

When it comes to dating preference, Peterson can only advise as far as reasonably good looking and similarity in personality dimension. That rationalist approach is easy to describe to another, but not enough in your own life.

But at the end of the day, that's not driven by emotions. There're tons of affair  where the couple on the surface seem to operate functionally.

For a truly functional emotionally connected relationship, you need to manifest and satisfy both of your inner self-righteousness, not in the perspective of social contract where one's desire should promote the mutual goal, but to say hell with it and just to make oneself feel more powerful.

Desire for Power

Nietzsche had manuscript on Will to Power, in 1893. That was the precursor to the development of Freudian ego. That psychological dimension is the fundamental to human existence and a reason why we exist as an individual biological entity.

Everyone has that at all political perspective. Nationalists want to portray the power over other culture with military presence and foreign polilcy, corporatists manifest such in the form of cash over luxurious houses and private clubs, individualists attain such in the disguised form of another's insecurity.

There is nobody, again, nobody who is without the will to power.

Agreeable personality can have the higher tolerance for the other's power, but that's not to say they fantasize power also. For women, that fantasy is often passed down onto their children.

At first glance, it's the never ending fighting for climbing up the hierarchy.

Despite such dismal human nature of Hobbesian dystopia, there's an alternative. What I promote today is the mutual interplay of ego mediated not by money, but by gratitudes.