Over the years I have seen (and been in) so many unhappy relationships. A crazy number of my friends are with people that are so patently not right for them yet they stay with them anyway.
They waste years of their life with people that will never appreciate them, never make them happy and never allow them to live the life they want, but despite it all, they don’t leave. Ultimately, I believe it’s what leads to such a high number of divorces in the UK, and I wish there was something I could about it to help people realise it, but more importantly, empower them to do something about it. (maybe my training as a life coach will be a small step in the right direction).
Fundamentally, I believe we stay for the following reasons:
- We are scared of being on our own – because being on our own, with the freedom to do what we like, control our happiness and be who we want is much much worse than being with someone that treats us terribly. Right?
- We convince ourselves that the bad times are temporary and the good will outshine them (even if they don’t).
- We are worried about having to start again – society has forced upon us an ideal age range to get married and have children, if you are nearer that period in your life then you may find it harder to leave the wrong person because you have no idea how long it will take to meet the ‘right’ person and getting married. What most people don’t realise is that this mindset leads to people being divorced (and single) at 30.
- We worry we will never meet someone with the few good qualities that person has – we exaggerate those qualities in our minds and associate them with only that person, despite the fact there will be many, many, more with those good qualities AND some.
- We make excuses for their bad habits – they’re stressed/going through a bad time/ I pushed them to it/ it’s my fault. The longer we blame ourselves and make excuses for why they behave badly, the longer we are denial about what is actually happening in the relationship and so we remain in it.
- There isn’t a right time to do it – he’s just lost his job, we’re about to go on holiday, his sister is getting married. There will never be a right time to end a relationship, if you keep putting it off because of life events, your simply making excuse to avoid the inevitable.
- Guilt – sometimes the relationship may have gotten so bad that you’ve met someone else, or you’ve fallen out of love with them. But you feel guilty at leaving them, maybe you own the house you live in, or you know they rely on you for income. So you stay, out of politeness to them.
To my brilliant readers, what are your thoughts on this topic?