For that matter, what happens if one or more have dominant personalities? What happens when each partner is passive? These are things to think about while you are developing friendships and begin courting.
Everyone is on their best behavior in the beginning. No one ever wants to be singled out for questionable behavior--they want to be seen in the best light, hiding what they perceive as faults. As the walls come down, and trusting relationships are formed, some personality traits may come out that are surprising.
Personalities are just that--traits and qualities that define how a person responds in various situations. I am sure everyone has heard of Type A and Type B personality types. Employers use these types to best align employees to postions where they can best be utilized. One is not better than the other. They are just different, and each responds differently to situations and other people.
These different personalities can cause confusion, fear, resentment, anxiety, anger, and many other emotions when they are not understood. What may be a natural assertiveness in one person can be seen as aggressive or hostile by another. This is when communication is vital.
Ideally, every partner should have an equal voice. It is sometimes difficult for that to happen when someone is naturally an Alpha-type and does not allow others to be heard. It can also be difficult when two or more partners are alphas, and heads begin to butt.
Whether in a monogamous or polygamous relationship, to co-exist, we need to learn to find the balance, encourage each other to speak their minds without criticism or judgement, support each other's growth, and develop a new kind of listening. There is the listening we do with our ears, but there is another kind that takes more work. It is more intuitive in nature, and involves reading body language, tone of voice, or lack of voice. It is the kind of listening that involves the heart. It takes empathy and keen attention. It is this level of communication that can make or break a relationship.
You may have heard someone say that the very thing that attracted them to a person was the one thing that ended up turning them off. Sometimes we are drawn to charismatic personalities, only to find ourselves repulsed by that same charisma later on.
As the relationship grows and develops, we need to be able to see people for who they are and realize that we all have warts, so to speak. We either accept them, or realize they are deal breakers and speak candidly about them. Many times, we can do a self-assessment and realize it is our own insecurities and pre-judgements that need the work.
A person who is a natural dominant personality can help a passive person find their voice; a passive person can help a dominant person take a step back and learn to smell the roses, as it were. If we pay attention and keep the lines of communication open, we can truly begin to appreciate our each other's strengths and celebrate them.
It is not easy. I am naturally a passive personality. Sometimes when I try to assert myself, it comes off as aggressive simply because it is not a natural part of my personality. I do think over time, however, I have "absorbed" some alpha traits. Maybe that is normal....I know several people in my family who were always passive, but as they aged, they became more dominant. And I have also observed the opposite: very strong, dominant personalities becoming passive with age.
Anyhow...I really want to get everyone's thoughts on this subject. What do you think?