Because it can break you AND your relationship. Lesson learned.
I guess one benefit of having been in a relationship that went up Shit Creek is you learn what not to do. Anymore. Ever again haha. The thing with me though, I feel, instead of learning lessons over the course of a few relationships, I had them all thrown at me at one time. It was a little overwhelming. That is an understatement. Did you read my ‘About’ section? Anyway I wanted to share what I learned.
These might seem obvious, but when you’re “crazy in love”, “drunk in love”, any other Beyonce song title that might fit here, we don’t tend to think about these things. The feelings take over. So here’s a list of things that I’ve come up with that might be helpful to have so you’re not overly dependent on your partner. I know they would have helped me.
1. Self-love. This is an important one. What do you think about yourself? Do you love yourself? Do you think you’re worthy? Are you getting into a relationship because you need someone to complete you? To make you happy? To solve your problems? That was a huge reason for me in getting into a relationship. I thought it would make me happy. And it did at times. But what it really did was make me realize how unhappy I was inside. Whenever my anxiety would act up, I would run to my ex instead of learning to deal with it myself. So I became dependent on him to “calm” my anxiety. He was a drug basically.
2. Friends. Go out with friends. Make new friends. Outside of your partner. I used to think when I met my ex I would be perfectly fine living in a little bubble world. Just him and I. “Drunk in looOoove” haha. [Roll eyes] And slowly but surely he ended up being my world and my life revolved around him. Not a good idea. Good friends are there for you before, after, and through it. Don’t ditch them. And the real good friends are there for you even when you’ve ditched them!
3. Family. Same as friends. Hang out with family. Talk to them. See how they’re doing. Don’t kick them to the curb.
4. Hobbies/Interests. Have hobbies and interests. And some that are separate from your partner.
5. Being comfortable alone. I guess that goes with self-love. I might do a separate post on this one. How to be comfortable alone. Being comfortable alone helps a lot because you won’t be so “controlling” over your partner. So many people are worried about their partners cheating on them. I was. But I think if I was comfortable being alone, yeah it would hurt if they cheated, but I don’t think it would be the end of the world. I would just leave because I know I deserve better. When we aren’t comfortable being alone, we tend to stay in relationships that aren’t good for us.
6. Income. Have your own way of making an income. I never had that issue personally but I know that’s a big reason for people staying in relationships that aren’t good for them.
Well, that’s my list. I know we’ll be somewhat dependent on our partner, we have to work together to make a relationship work and there are chemicals somewhere in there, but I was overly dependent. My entire being was determined by how my ex behaved. An ideal relationship, in my mind, is a monogamous relationship between two people who are perfectly fine living alone and being on their own yet they enjoy spending time together and going through life together. There is respect. There is love. There is honesty. There is trust. There’s arguing because they can’t agree on everything. But there’s compromise haha. I’m learning….
I hope this helps though. Maybe you won’t make the same mistake I did. If you do, eh, you learn. You’ll grow. That’s an upside, right? xxx
-Sonja Jackson, OpenHeartTin