In this age of multiple marriages and serial relationships, it’s hard not to emerge unscathed without at least one relationship in your baggage that you deeply regret. It’s the one where you wonder, “How did an intelligent woman like me ever get involved in such a relationship?” or “How did something so good become so bad?”
“How did an intelligent woman like me ever get involved in such a relationship?”
It’s the relationship where you are likely to have experienced your highest highs and lowest lows. You may have felt the most loved and most hated you have ever felt, and all with the same man. You can’t believe you ever tolerated it. Or it could have been a relationship where you hung on too long to a decent man who was just never going to commit.
Some people survive these relationships only to replicate a milder version in the future. The mistreatment is veiled by the perception that it’s not as bad as the last relationship. Other people resolve to avoid intimacy altogether in order to avoid getting hurt again. Neither of these options are healthy ones.
Instead, use what you’ve learned from the relationship to embrace a new you and a different kind of relationship. Reflect on the past relationship even though it may be painful. What can you learn from it? Take an honest look at what you need to do differently. Instead of berating yourself for making a bad choice, remember that you are not to blame for someone else’s bad behavior. You are, however, responsible for what you allow. Most people will unwittingly test the limits to see how far they can go. It is your responsibility to show them.
Keep your eyes open to what is really happening in relationship. Seeing something negative doesn’t mean you have to leave a relationship. It does mean you need to address it and stand firm that you will not tolerate the intolerable.
Here are some warnings to heed. (Please note that while the following statements are written in the masculine, they apply to both genders):
- If family or friends view you as his savior, he has probably committed a lot of sins.
- If he lies to others, he will lie to you.
- If he is disrespectful to others, he will eventually become disrespectful to you.
- If you find your self tolerating things you never thought you would tolerate, you are violating your own values and limits of what is acceptable and what is not.
- If you are thinking to yourself “but there are a lot of dysfunctional men out there,” or “the pickings are really slim,” you are likely in a troubled relationship.
- If everything negative that has happened to him is somebody else’s fault, it’s probably not true.
- If something has always gotten in the way of his success, his actions probably have something to do with it.
- If you are staying in the relationship simply because you are dependent on him for whatever reason, it isn’t healthy.
- If his gifts carry the expectation of anything other than appreciation, it’s not really a gift.
- If what he tells you doesn’t add up, vital pieces of information are likely missing.
- If you make excuses to your self or others for his bad behavior, you are feeling ashamed when he is behaving shamelessly.
- If he doesn’t accept responsibility for his behaviors in prior relationships, he isn’t likely to do so in your relationship either.
- If he has been unfaithful to others, he will likely be unfaithful to you.
- If he uses the information you’ve confided in him against you, it’s a huge betrayal.
- If he isn’t ready to commit, he may never be ready.
Add whatever pearls of wisdom that you have gathered from your own relationships to the list. Remember them as you open your heart to love again.
In the midst of writing this article, I ironically happened upon an article by an author named Rick Bragg who told of badgering his mother to tell him one good thing about his alcoholic, abusive father. Finally, she began to share. The disclosure that struck my heart the most was that his father once bought a fast car so he could reach his mother more quickly and spend more time before he had to leave her. How could she not have loved him? I doubt she ever dreamed that someone so adoring would eventually treat her so despicably. There are reasons you fall in love. Just as you remember why you had to leave a relationship, it is important to recall why you came to it. And it is the totality of the memories that will keep you sane.
This guest post was written by Amy Warren, LMHC
What was your biggest takeaway from Amy’s words?
Get Your Free Reinvent Your Look eBook!
I believe that you are experiencing the best time of your life right now.
In my new eBook I will show you timeless beauty tips used by legendary beauties like Cher, Tina Turner and Audrey Hepburn. Now is the time to flaunt yourself not hide yourself or make excuses!
The best part is that my new eBook is yours for Free.
Just enter your best email to tell me where to send it.
Category: Men & Dating