Today across my path I saw signs of renewal of old connections and the resurgence of an old old hope. Not mine. But one I recognise. And I smiled.
It made me grateful I have taken time to look at myself, look back, work through so much and begin to find my way through all this, with greater understanding of myself and a number of significant lessons. It helped me to affirm that I have made the right choice in this.
Some people are meant to be part of our life for a time, and then leave it because there is a lesson we need to learn. Still I believe there is a special someone who will be with me – a companion for my life time. Nothing short of that is good enough. None of us should settle for someONE ( spell that anyone) we can make a go of some sort of a life with, but I cam waiting for that perfectly right one.
How do you know you should go rather than work through things and stay? All relationships have their ups and down and we need to be willing to work through things. But I believe staying with someone to see the bills paid, or because the one you know and have is better than risking it out there ( I mean – what if there ISN’T someone for you?) are both not sufficient reasons to stay.
From recent experience, I asked myself a number of questions. In the hope of helping anyone else facing a similar choice, I am listing some of them below:
- Are you able to get your needs met in the relationship without too much trouble? If it takes too much effort to get your needs met, then your relationship is doing you more harm than good. “Hope deferred makes the heart sick”. Long days, weeks and years of giving, while your own needs are left to wait leads to bitterness. Life is too short. Leave.
- Do you genuinely like your partner, and does your partner seem to genuinely like you? If you don’t mutually like each other, you don’t belong together. I started liking Tony, and for a short while I liked myself with him. And then I stopped liking him. It became glaringly obvious that we have very different values and a very very different definition of love. I don’t doubt he started off loving me, as much as he was able, but it is not what I know to be love. I am grateful for the lessons I learned with him, about love, about myself, about what I want and what I do not want. Leaving was the only kind thing and right thing for us both at the end.
- Do you feel a unique sexual attraction to your partner? If there’s no spark, there’s no point in staying. I am not sure that chemistry was ever there past the first 3 months with him. In truth. He satisfied his curiosity, and then lost interest. There is a whole heap I could say about this. But there is no point. He is not the man I hoped he was when I first met him.
- Does your partner exhibit any behavior that makes the relationship too difficult for you to stay in, and do you find your partner is either unwilling or incapable of changing? Results matter far more than intentions. If your partner behaves in a way that’s intolerable to you, then permanent change is a must, or you need to leave. Trying to tolerate the intolerable will only erode your self-esteem, and you’ll see yourself as stronger in the past than in the present. Example after example here I could give. I know what they are. This helped me decide.
- Do you see yourself when you look in your partner’s eyes? A metaphor… if you don’t sense a strong compatibility with your partner, you’re better off with someone else.
- Do you and your partner each respect each other as individuals? No mutual respect = time to leave.
- Does your partner serve as an important resource for you in a way that you care about? If your partner does little to enhance your life and you wouldn’t lose anything important to you by leaving, then leave. You’ll break even by being on your own and gain tremendously by finding someone else who is a resource to you.
- Does your relationship have the demonstrated capacity for forgiveness? If you can’t forgive each others transgressions, then resentment will gradually replace love. Leave.
- Do you and your partner have fun together? A relationship that’s no fun is dead. Leave.
- Do you and your partner have mutual goals and dreams for your future together? If you aren’t planning to spend your future together, something’s terribly wrong. Take off.
Our relationships ( friendship, or more) should enhance our life, not drain it. At the very least, you should be happier in the relationship than outside it. Even if a break-up leads to a messy parting with complex arrangements, in many situations, leaving will still lead to long-term happiness.
Staying in a defunct relationship almost surely prevents you being happy!!!