Buyers, Renters and Freeloaders

Buyers, Renters and Freeloaders by William F. Harley, Jr

The subtitle of this book helps you understand what it's about: "Turning Revolving Door Romance into Lasting Love."  This book is really about maturity in relationships.  It explains that there are three types of romantic relationships, buyers, renters and freeloaders.

Freeloaders are people who approach relationships from a primarily ego-centric point of view.  Dr. Harley says that they are the only group that believes in unconditional love in relationships, meaning, you should love them unconditionally.  In other words, freeloaders believe that other people should love them just as they are, which means they don't feel any obligation to change, improve or grow for the sake of the relationship.

Renters recognize that a relationship has to be a two-way street, so they put some effort into trying to please their partner, but they balk at the idea that anything should require too much work.  Even good relationships start off with a "renter" attitude, because when we're courting someone we tend to put on our best behavior and we tolerate a lot of the other person's annoying behavoirs.  Renters are "trying out" the relationship, with the idea that if it stops "working" then it's time to end it.

Buyers on the other hand are able to "buy into" the commitment of a relationship.  They have the mature ability to recongize and express their own needs and listen to the needs of their partner.  Buyers are committed to the relationship, so they will stick with it and work hard at the relationship, even when things are difficult.

Reading Buyers, Renters & Freeloaders: Turning Revolving-Door Romance into Lasting Love was a very eye-opening experience for me.  First of all, I recognized that I've always been a "buyer" in relationships, but that a relationship won't work unless the other person is also a buyer.  If you're a buyer, but you marry a free-loader, you will care for their needs, but they will feel no reciprocal obligation to care for yours.

I highly recommend not only this book, but other titles by William F. Harley, Jr.  You can find all his titles on his website: