In therapy, I’ve learned without consciously doing so; I expect others to think, be, act and do as I would. In my opinion, that’s where the golden rule is a bunch of hocus pocus. Doing something with hopes that it is returned (but then we get disappointed, hurt, and angry at times that they don’t do it back to us) that’s a demand that will cause unnecessary bitterness for our present being and future being and or relationship(s). If they don’t think, be, act, and do like us, shame on them, right? WRONG.
It was understanding that new belief that shifted my perspective.
For example, it would be nice if they helped out in times of distress without telling them what we need? Of course, that would be lovely, but no one is a mind reader, and we have to stop thinking “if they are the one” or “if they love me,” then they would know already what I need.” Hear me out, though. I am speaking to newly dating, newer relationship windows, not someone who has been married for five plus years. If you’re going on five years and having these issues still… then maybe that’s something to get curious about.
Instead of hoping that someone does, thinks, and acts like you, this is where I want to hone in that communication is critical for having a successful marriage, relationship, and or friendship. However, effective communication is even better as it will keep a marriage, relationship, and friendship for years to come. Why? Because you’re effectively sharing your needs so that they will be received, not just shared i.e., I need this from you now. See how the tone is different? Which technique is more effective? The demand or the sharing? The sharing. This is great, we are learning!
Here is another example from society and fairytales. If that person is your person, it should be easy. I agree that it should be easy to some extent, but that doesn’t mean getting to know someone, what makes them tick, their tendencies, what you need, love languages, etc., will be easy and obvious. Two strangers with baggage can be hard enough to handle, but when you expect someone to know you before they even know you, that’s just setting them up for failure; thus, the relationship could then be doomed, and self-sabotage has just been at play. Doing all this though takes time and time you shall not rush in order for the colors to be seen and experiences to be had. Even though at first you may have thought this person is it but time is telling you otherwise, it’s ok to take a step back. Do you know why you can say no or take a step back? That’s what dating is for. Dating is about getting to know what you want, come that time when you want to commit to someone for forever. But giving someone marriage vows in a dating relationship only will set you up for that much more hurt because the commitment is different.
I get it. You want to be married, though. I understand. But making it work from the start is not a good sign. Going in with making it work… why do you want to make it work?
You don’t want to be lonely? You’re already feeling alone in this relationship, though.
You don’t want to start over? There isn’t just one person out there for you.
You just want to be married? Don’t get married just to get married. That’s just silly.
We have history, so it’s hard. There is history, but a few months or a couple of years is not long in marriage talk.
You can make it work? Why make it work already, it’s only the beginning, it shouldn’t be that hard.
All those excuses sound legit as it justifies why you are staying in something that is not serving you. And rightfully so. But I am not sure where we all decided we’d rather not hurt someone’s feelings by not ending it and rather sacrifice a lifetime for misery or settling, not wanting to cause someone else pain. Still, you then cause pain for both of you since it’s already and has been miserable. Are you following? Hurt, pain, and rejection are all part of falling in love. If you’re not ready to feel those feelings, you may not be prepared for marriage, let alone dating.
You need to figure out what you need as an individual, effectively communicate those needs to your partner, and whatever happens, whether they meet your needs or not, you get to decide if you’re ok with not having those needs met and moving forward. Or, taking a step back, re-evaluating what you need versus want, and if that’s not with them, then ending would serve you both the best since those need(s) will always be there. If they can’t meet that, they will always disappoint you or vice versa, thus starting the crack in the foundation come your lifetime together.
I want to believe that people don’t get into a relationship in hopes of breaking up. But knowing that breaking up may be a possibility because, again, you’re dating each other, not married with a signed contract, so breaking up can be an option. You can have that out if it’s not what you wanted, hoped, or needed. Sometimes you can have two good people together, but in the end, it wasn’t so great after you evaluated and invested some time with that person. That doesn’t mean you failed or you’re never going to get married. It simply means it did not work with this person, and that’s ok!! It’s all a part of the process. You can’t expect someone to think, be, act, and do, especially in this situation. Now is the time to THINK for yourself about what YOU want, not to avoid conflict or hardship or loneliness, but what YOU want. Then, go get it!