Your time is limited so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. ~ Steve Jobs ~
Relationships, like life itself, can be complicated at times. There is no fairy tale story of a perfect relationship surviving on just love. From both sides, it takes commitment, compromise and consistency. Relationships constantly require two people who are willing to do the work. Love by itself, has never been enough to build and maintain a healthy relationship. It’s not just about one person over the other, but each other. Both people must count and be considered.
When you find yourself in a relationship that doesn’t feel good and you’re not being treated right, you’re settling. Sometimes a person may decide it hurts less to stay than it does to go. But, staying in an unhealthy relationship can send the wrong message. Even if the words say you want more, better and what’s right, the action of staying without healthy change, can overpower the words.
The anticipated hurt of leaving may feel like it’s more than you can take. It’s just easier and less painful to stay. The grief and healing of an ended relationship can seem like it’s more than one can bear. The time it will take to get through the pain is different from person to person. Believing that it will pass can offer strength. Knowing that the pain can lead to a source of strength can be encouraging. Letting go of the person and the pain can be uncomfortable. But, getting out of a relationship that strips you away from who you genuinely are, how you want to be treated and how you want to live your life can offer a chance to see things more clearly.
Any relationship that is full of blame, brainwashing and manipulation will be almost impossible to see as clearly while in it as you will by being out of it. When you allow it to be about you, you’ll then realize how much of yourself you gave away to another person. That’s not what healthy relationships are about. It should be give and take and willingness to not be selfish, entitled, disrespectful, hurtful or harmful. The truth of this will be practically impossible to truly see until you’ve left the situation.
Sometimes the thinking begins before we’re out of negative, one-sided relationships. That means you’re starting to get it. You understand you’re in something that is not quite what you had in mind for your life. To want a healthy relationship where you both treat each other right is a healthy way of thinking. Know your worth. Know, your are worthy of better including honesty, trust, faithfulness and safety. You’re not here on this earth to just be whatever someone else decides you will be to and for them but, otherwise; you have no value and they don’t want or need you for anything.
When it’s time to leave, expect attempts to talk you out of it. Expect to hear all the “I love you”, “I need you”, “You can’t do anything without me”, “Nobody wants you”, “I’ll do better”, “I’ll stop”, “I won’t do it anymore”, etc. Even expect name calling, crying, affection, silence and just about anything it takes to make you stay. When you expect it, you’re prepared for it. You’re more likely to respond with collected thoughts than purely on emotion. Expect that some of what’s said will pull at your heartstrings. You may strongly think about staying because it all sounds so genuine. It’s playing games with your hearth and your mind. Maybe you’ve been down that road before, with this person or someone else. You may truly believe the person loves you. Remember though; love has never been able to stand alone. It’s not enough for a healthy relationship. All good, healthy relationships require so much more.
The truth is, nothing ever changes unless the person changes. There are just some people who don’t realize until it’s too late, how much potential they had in having a good relationship. But, not everyone is actually ready. The reality is, for different reasons, some people will never be ready. You can’t control someone else. You can’t make them be who they are not wanting to be. That takes work and consistency. It may be more than what they can commit to. Some people are just not capable. You can’t love or wish someone into changing. This isn’t a fairy tale story. This is your life story.
Staying in an unhealthy relationship is not a way to prove your worth. To the other person, your worth was already decided. They will see nothing more of you. Your purpose in their life has already been determined. It is based on their needs and wants; not yours. It’s drama and it does not mix well with healthy love. People are going to be who they are going to be. Your life doesn’t have to be full of drama and surrounded by those who produce it. That goes for anyone, no matter who the relationship is with. Including family! Your life will be better once you allow better.
People are going to talk whether you stay or go. They may even make up stories. They may gossip about that which they really know nothing about. You can only control you. Be mindful enough to love yourself enough to do better in your life. Be brave enough to not allow anyone to take you away from you. Brave enough to live your own authentic life.
You’ve got the floor…
What hard truth have you learned about relationships? Please leave a comment to share your thoughts.