Just read: "There’s a lot of confusion over the word, ‘partner’. It’s very important to decide whether or not you have a transactional relationship or a true partnership"-- a loaded statement from the CEO of an IT company.
What is indeed the nature of relationships/partnerships in our lives? Are all partnerships a kind of a relationship or vice versa? Are we in it for the sake of it, for the sake of love or as Austen would've said for convenience? And most importantly, who's a partner?
Let's try and define a partner first. According to the dictionary, it's one who's associated with another. So, is it the "other" half? The alter ego? What's his/her function in the scheme of things? Is the "other" supposed to have qualities similar/dissimilar to the "one"? No I'm not qualified enough to get into any existentialist theories here. Just trying to figure things out.
So, what is a partnership in this context? One and the other marooned in an island aboard a ship?!! Ok no, jokes apart, is it two people(not necessarily in love) in a convenient relationship? If the relationship is convenient (or otherwise), does it mean it can be between any two people living together or miles apart? What then is a true partnership?
To pick up the thread from Jai's post, let's take, for example, the nature of long distance relationships (LDRs). First, when they are long distance, is there an element of relationship there? Or is it just a friendship, purely transactional? A kind of deal to keep in touch; give each other some peptalk, when either one is down, and almost out; just be there (virtually or phone-etically) to listen to the ravings and rantings of a semi-demented mind.
Relationships with no distance between them (read married/live- in couples), do we call them partnerships? Partners in love? It's a complex and tricky area. Marriage is a different ball game altogether, as they say. Still trying to figure out the nuances of it...some comments will help! But does marriage mean there is nothing transactional in the relationship? What's your job is yours, what's ours is also yours, but my job is mine. In relationships do you make such demarcations such as: the kitchen is your (wife's) territory, not mine..the living room (with TV, Music system et al) is my territory not yours, the bedroom is sometimes mine and sometimes yours.
So where does the word partner come into the picture in the scheme of relationships? Just to tango on the dance floor, in the kitchen, with the kid? What is a true partnership? You do half the cooking, I do the other half. You dust the Tv, music sytem, DVDs, I sweep and swab the floor? You eat the snacks, I drink the whisky!
Or in true Shantiniketan style " Tumi fool, ami pata, tumi jol, ami atta!" ...