It’s a scary thing to think that the person you’ve spent the last six months with, or maybe even the last six years with, may not actually be the right person for you. I mean, really, nobody wants to be alone. And, after all that time and energy you invested into this – even though you’re miserable and unhappy – you convince yourself that you just can’t give up now.
I find that many people are trapped in toxic relationships that kill the soul rather than nourish it. We were created to be in loving, trusting, authentic, monogamous, and mutually sacrificial relationships. Yet, we feed ourselves lies, saying “She’ll change” or “He’ll get better, I just have to give it some time” when really we should just do as Maya Angelou said: “When someone shows you who they are the first time, believe them.”
Are we really that desperate? Are we really that willing to settle for something rather than nothing?
Maybe the problem isn’t with the other person, but the problem actually lies within. Maybe we are too afraid of the silence and solitude that being single affords us. Perhaps we are focused on “saving face” rather than saving ourselves from a lifetime of misery and despair.
As a pastor, I’ve counseled couples who are considering marriage. The vast majority of these couples went on to say, “I do.” However, there have been times where I’ve noticed red flags and I asked them to truly think about what it is that they’re doing.
We have to realize that some people are in our lives for a permanent reason, and some, just for a season.
Our society glamorizes relationships, passionate sex, and the romantic fairy tales. But reality is just the opposite. Relationships take work. And I suggest to you today that you should only engage in that serious work with someone who has shown you that they are equally willing to work with you.
Relationships should not be one-sided. They should not be full of confusion, frustration, or even fear.
If you find yourself in a situation like this, or perhaps something even worse like an emotionally abusive relationship, get out, and get out now!
Your life is worth more than having a trophy. Your life is worth more than a Facebook status that says, “In a relationship since…” Realize that you don’t need anyone to make you complete or to make you happy. The sad thing is, however, that we depend on others to regulate our emotional states. We create unhealthy emotional dependencies and we find ourselves unable to exist without that other person, even if they aren’t right for us.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that it is easy to end a relationship. But I am saying that each of us has to stop and examine why we are with the person that we call our boyfriend, girlfriend, fiancé, spouse, or partner. If that person doesn’t push you to become a better version of yourself through his or her own self-sacrifice, then maybe you need to rethink your relationship.
I know this may sound harsh, and this may sound unrealistic. But, I’m speaking from experience – from an educational perspective with regard to relationship counseling, and from my own disappointments and failures with relationships.
Listen to your heart. Listen to your emotions. Listen to your soul. Are you being nourished and nurtured? If so, then maybe you’ve found the right one. Are you feeling empty, drained, anxious, and lonely even when you’re with that special person? Then get out.
Remember, your worth is dependent on these simple words: “You are my Beloved, with whom I am well pleased.” If your friend, lover, or whatever you call them doesn’t make you feel that way…if they don’t remind you of your divine belovedness through words and deeds, then it’s time to let that relationship die.
You will be okay, you will get through this, and you will survive. But for goodness sake, please, recognize your value and your worth and don’t settle for less than you deserve. Why? Because you are the Beloved.