If you found your way to this article, it may be because you’re the type of woman who constantly finds herself trying to “fix” a man, or entering into a relationship with someone who isn’t quite on your level of maturity or emotional stability.
But that’s OK, because you’re going to change him and make him be better. Right?
I can’t tell you how many conversations I’ve had with women who found themselves in a situation like this and have become increasingly frustrated that he’s still facing the same struggles as months earlier when they first got together.
This is probably because, well, you can’t change someone. You may be their reason to want to change, which is a beautiful thing, but they have to do it themselves.
So, if you’ve found yourself in a pattern like this in the past and are unable to find a happy, healthy relationship because of it, how do you break the cycle?
1. You don’t pay attention to his past.
How a man has lived his life up until the point he met you, is a road taken that you cannot change. Similar to walking into the woods for 10 miles and expecting to be able to walk back out in 1 mile — it’s just not going to happen.
If he has a long history of short-lived negative relationships — perhaps a bad or nonexistent relationship with family, constantly revolving around him — or is always placing the blame on women for failed relationships, then I’m sorry to say, but willingly dating a man like this simply puts you in the middle of his destructive path.
Like the person who steps off of the tracks in the movie at the last second when the train is coming, it’s time to get out of the way.
2. You stay away from men who take you out of your comfort zone.
Being comfortable with the person you’re with is, of course, of the utmost importance. But that also depends on what kind of comfort it is. If you’re the type of woman who’s drawn to the wrong types of men, then familiarity isn’t necessarily a good thing.
If he reminds you of an ex or brings back the same hopeful feelings of being able to help him that you recognize from your past, turn around and walk away.
You’ve got to be honest and ask yourself how these scenarios have turned out for you before. If you were successful in helping someone change and lived happily ever after with him, then you wouldn’t be back out in the world looking for another project.
3. You fall for the kind of person he “could be.”
The right person for you will absolutely support and encourage you on your journey to become who you’d like to be, while still loving and accepting you as the way you are. But seeing potential in a man who doesn’t see it in himself and is doing nothing about it, is asking for trouble.
If you’re going to try to help him open his eyes to who he can be, and what he can become, you’re basically attempting to paint on a blank canvas. This is much different than a man who has his path in life carved out and is following after his dreams and ambitions.
If you feel that you need to be a mother figure to him and take care of him in order for him to get to where (you think) he should be, you’re setting yourself up for disaster.
4. You don’t understand that the lack of a challenge is a good thing.
If you’re a woman who falls into these patterns, you’re probably drawn to the challenge of changing a man. If he would just listen to your guidance and be driven by your love, he would finally become who he should be, after all of these years … wouldn’t he?
If this is the case, you probably shy away from men who don’t challenge you in this way. You may even find them boring because they don’t “need” you.
If you recognize this pattern in yourself, you can begin to recognize that someone who doesn’t need you is a good thing, and is probably exactly the type of man you should be dating instead. Because let’s face it, your current pattern hasn’t brought you the happiness you expected it to.
5. You ignore your intuition.
A woman’s intuition is a pretty amazing thing. Yet, so many choose to ignore it. There may be something that immediately draws you to a man in terms of his appearance, stature, personality, whatever it might be. But when you begin to know him on a deeper level you will find yourself having more thoughts than how well-tailored his suit is.
If you start finding yourself taking on more of a therapist role than you do as an equal in a relationship, it’s a clear and immediate sign that you’re choosing another “fixer-upper” who will, in the end, frustrate you and leave you wanting. Again.
Many people struggle in life and need support sometimes — myself included. We aren’t perfectly evolved and we all have our flaws, but it’s our responsibility as men and women to handle them ourselves and seek help in the right places, the best we can.
As someone’s significant other, this isn’t your role. Your role is to love and support them as an equal, but not to fix them.
Once you realize this, you’ll find yourself being drawn to healthier, more emotionally stable men who are able to give you the love and support you need in return, as well.
Someone who hasn’t yet fully formed themselves will never be able to be your teammate and true equal — and that’s exactly what you need.