It’s hard to know when our relationship is over. There is no red light telling us to stop, nor is there a green light telling us to go or continue. We are left to our own feelings inside ourselves to tell us what is right for us when we search for an answer.
Usually this search comes after a fight. Painful feelings occur, maybe they are accompanied with a difficult past that becomes highlighted and pretty soon we may become overwhelmed with what is happening to us. In this state we might be asking our self, what am I doing here. Why am suffering in this relationship like this?
As a relationship guide, I spend a lot of time simplifying the most important elements that make a good relationship. The more I teach, the more concise it gets. And I think I have it boiled down to just three parts, three important ingredients to help your relationship thrive.
While they are few in number, the steps might be considered challenging as they require a lot of thought, patience, and trust. The thought part is you thinking about the parts and actually deciding to make yourself do the work. The patience is not expecting to get things right all at once, to be able to allow yourself to develop new positive behaviors in the time it takes. The trust is so you will believe in yourself when you doubt your progress and remind yourself that you can indeed do this.
It happens to all of us. We hold on to our thoughts and don’t say them because we are afraid of hurting the other person’s feelings. We stuff them down inside and just stay silent. We may grouse about them later with someone else, but most of the time a lot of us don’t speak up.
If this sounds like you, you are not alone. This is one of the most common themes I come across while helping people in counseling. Most people are aware they do this, and they are not sure how to change it because it’s something they have always done…put their feelings aside and take care of the other person first.
Many people struggle with taking responsibility in a relationship. They feel victimized, they blame, and they feel miserable. It doesn’t have to be this way.
One of the hardest things I see couples struggle with is the idea that each person in the relationship is responsible for his or her own part of the problems that surround them. It’s not uncommon for people to want to blame the other person for how they feel as if the partner did something to cause the upset. Something bad happens and people start pointing fingers at the other person.