How to save a bad relationship (or leave it -- which also has proven to be a challenge for many)
Before we go any further, let’s make sure we are talking about the same type of situation here.
How many of the following signs have you been spotting in your relationship?
- NO CONNECTION : Feeling that there is a wall or an empty space between you
- A TWILIGHT ZONE: Wondering if your partner is doing something behind your back – and then wondering if it’s all in your mind
- ADJUSTING YOUR CONVICTIONS: Having PROOF that your partner is doing something that you hate or at least consider wrong – and then ending up completely justifying it
- SANITY SHIFT: You are starting to question your judgements, decisions and memory
- MORAL STANDARDS SHIFT: You are tempted to lie about everyday things (what you did today or where you went with a friend, for example) in order to avoid put downs or ridicule
- ONE DAY YOU LOVE HIM, ANOTHER DAY YOU HATE HIM: A yo-yo effect between feeling totally thrilled with this relationship and being the luckiest person to have him -- and feeling extremely frustrated, felling like something is terribly wrong, and that there is no fixing this
- ISOLATION ONSET: You have less friends in your life as compared to before you were in this relationship
- FEELING ALONE EVEN WHEN YOU ARE WITH HIM: Feeling no reciprocity: like your feelings and needs are not being understood or considered
- INREASED WATCHFULNESS: Often walking on eggshells: watching everything you say or do in order to not cause any offense or conflict
- BEHAVIOR CHANGES: Changing your plans and often even opinions in order to prevent “setting him off” or “accommodate his needs”
- STONEWALLING: If you do something wrong, you are often punished by silent treatment and he ignores you for long periods of time
- DOUBLE STANDARD: What he does is how he treats you is often minimized and justified, but every little mistake you do is usually see as a very serious offense
- DEMAND FOR PERFECTION: It feel like unless you’re perfect, you’re awful and do not deserve any consideration. Human error is not tolerated
- BOUNDARY VIOLATIONS: You are often interrupted in your conversation, and he is not very willing to give up the floor for any reason. He expects other people to adjust their expectations and boundaries in order to accommodate him in a way that he believes is “considerate”. You end up enforcing this in order to “keep peace”. All and any rules are often broken.
There are 14 points above. If your relationship has scored 8 or more, you are likely dealing with someone who has a form of emotional disturbance which is very widespread in our times – but has not been much talked about, at least util recently.
Let me guess:
When your relationship started you felt that you have found the absolute love of your life – and you also wanted to HELP HIM. He needed help in something, and you are an empathetic person, so you were ready to step up to the plate and help this awesome man, who has found himself in dire straights for no fault of his own.
How did I know?
Because this is a sign #15.
The dynamics of this kind of relationships are very similar in each case, and follow the same rules (BTW- this makes dealing with them easier, actually – something to be thankful for)
(As a side remark: #16: You were led to think that your situation is very unique, and the person that you’re dealing with is very different and cannot be easily understood. False!😂)
The relationship with these dynamics is created when we have a combination of these two personalities: 1) an empath --someone who is companionate, caring, giving and thrives on helping others and
2) a wounded child – or, what I term “personality X” – this is a placeholder term that I coined for this condition because there is so much mislabeling and conflicting terminology out there to describe it. Let’s it them for now. Personality X defines a person who – usually due to childhood neglect or emotional trauma -- has not developed emotional self-sufficiency and thus is plagued with inward guilt and is in constant need of attention, reinforcement and support.
Needless to say, these personalities attract to each other like a magnet: one is willing to give, and the other one is thrilled to take.
Unfortunately, though, the dynamics of this type of relationships are very destructive and unless stopped and changed THROUGH A CONSCIOUS EFFORT will lead to the following outcomes:
- You will eventually find yourself in compete isolation, when all your friends and relatives have been pushed away
- Your finances will be devastated
- You are going to start feeling that you’re going insane – or actually go insane
- Physical abuse may result
- Cheating may result
- You may find yourself in a situation where you really want to leave – but can’t. Trapped, in other words. A prisoner.
- You are going to start struggling with depression and anxiety
- You will not feel happy and neither will he. In fact, you both will feel progressively unhappy.
As you may have noticed, some of the points above are a “will” and some are “may”. This is exactly how it is: some of these outcomes are guaranteed to happen, and some may happen.
I assume that if you have gotten to this point of the article, you have scored at least 8 matches in the first checklist. Please take this one seriously: if the first one matched, this one is going to also. If these things haven’t happened to you yet, they WILL happen. In fact, I think if you look closer, you will be noticing some forerunning signs of them already. Tell denial to go you-know-where and take action!
Fortunately, there IS something you can do.
First, you have a decision to make. Now, you KNOW what nature of a relationship you’re in.
(Don’t kid yourself – TELL THE DENIAL TO GO OUT OF THE WINDOW – this IS the nature of your relationship. You have taken a professional DIAGNOSTIC TEST. It IS accurate).
So, now that you know – do you want to stay?
The questions that you may want to ask yourself in order to make this decision are as follows:
- Do I really love this person?
- Do I feel he loves me – at least enough to show some care and consideration for my feelings sometimes, or is he just using me to satisfy his needs (financial, emotional, sexual, related to his social position, etc.)
- Am I still prepared to take care of him as I was when the relationship first started – or do I want to be free from this burden?
- Has any abuse taken place?
- Has any infidelity taken place?
- Am I willing to deal with 4 and 5, if they are applicable?
- Do I feel committed to the relationship, or did it start and continue as a game that I am trying to win?
As you may have noticed, the questions like “where am I going to go if I leave” or “how can I afford to leave” are not in the above list – this is because they shouldn’t play into this decision. We can deal with these, if needed. But first, you need to take a solid decision as to which way you’re going – and stick with it. Otherwise, you will be going in circles forever.
Regardless, of whether you decide to stay or go, you are going to need to change the dynamics of these relationship.
I mean, if you want to leave, and you CAN leave now – then just do it. Case closed.
However, most people who are in these relationships, by the time they realize that something is wrong CANNOT LEAVE – even if they would want to.
Finances are a big part – by that time, they are usually pretty thinned out.
But emotional attachment is the main part here. “One day you hate him” (…today may be that day, as you’re making a decision to leave…), “tomorrow you love him” (… he is going to call, come back, message… and you’re going to see that beautiful, wounded person inside of him, underneath of it all… and feel like you weren’t perfect throughout all of this either… and you’re a forgiving person who hates to hold grudges…) – and so, you’re going to get back with him… and then the story is going to repeat itself in another month or two. It WILL repeat itself.
So, this bears repeating: if you cannot or do not want to leave now, you absolutely MUST start working on changing the dynamics of this relationship. There is really no other way about this – or all the nasty things that I predicted above will happen: these types of relationships do not get better on their own, unfortunately.
Now, how do you change these dynamics?
If I could tell you in a paragraph – or even a page – or two, I certainly would have. However, unfortunately it’s not that quick and easy. If you have ever tried to change a habit, you know how much time and effort it took – even assuming you were successful. Here you are not only going to have to change SEVERAL of your habits (more than one) – you will also have to change a few behaviors and perceptions, both your own and your partner’s. And if you want to be successful, it’s best to have guidance of someone who know how – professional help, in other words.
I don’t want to come across as a salesperson here, so please pardon a somewhat longwinded explanation of this point. But it’s really not realistic to tackle a serious challenge like this with the help of YouTube videos and ad-hock lists of tips and tricks that you can find online. Consider a parallel example from the physiological side of things. If you have a simple deviation from the norm – let’s say, a headache – then you have a simple solution, like taking a pill. But what if it is something serious, like cancer? If someone told you to simply take a pill – once, for your cancer, you would call them a quack, right? Well, it is the same way when it comes to emotional and psychological side of things: I would be a quack if I told you that the problem can be solved with one simple article. I honestly can’t.
The only help I can offer you is a step-by-step approach that will help you understand crystal clear what is going on and find an solution that you can actually implement (because it fits your situation – as opposed to an advice of “just do it” nature – when we both know you psychologically can’t, as in, for example “invite certain friends over regardless of what he thinks”).
It is very important for you to understand yourself, understand him, and understand the dynamics of this kind of relationship thoroughly: this way you’re going to be in control.
The good news however, is that the “malignant” dynamics that result from the combination of these two personalities “by default”, so to say, CAN BE CHANGED. Your relationship can be saved, if you want it to be. You indeed can have the person that you first loved – and could see underneath all the extra-curricular baggage – be a functional part of your life. This is why if you love him, and feel committed to this relationship, I would really want to encourage you to start working on “curing this disease” now . I already said this, but I am going to repeat it again: if you don’t deliberately change anything, and the dynamics of this relationship take their normal course, it will eventually destroy you both. Both you AND him.
And, of course, if you decided to leave, then you will only need to work on half of the ratio here – just yourself. Thus, the desired results will come a lot sooner: you will be able to leave with confidence, WITHOUT guilt – and with a lesson learned, as in being a stronger, more together person who will not fall into the same cycle shortly (as it happens to the majority of people who “just leave”).
And another thing that I can do to help, is to try and help you circumvent the high professional counseling fees. This is why I created this program, that I let women join for $1, for the first month. ($39/mo. thereafter, so if you can solve all your problems within a month you can consider yourself a double winner!😜) Financial woes is something that comes with this type of relationship, as I have already mentioned, and this is my humble attempt at helping out those of us who are in that stage of the game. Did I mention I am in this kind of relationship as well? So, you’re not only going to receive the professional advice here: I can also speak from personal experience.