Before anyone gets the wrong idea, this isn’t about growing older as an individual with 12 cats, and watching TV for a sole source of entertainment for the rest of anyone’s life!
This is about STOPPING THE SACRIFICE and where our true power lies within us.
I talk to so many people who are stuck in shitty relationships everyday. Did I say, SHITTY? Yep, I did.
The sacrifices people make to stay for crumbs contains no “good enough,” excuse. The problem isn’t in the reasons we give to ourselves or others, it’s the belief we have of what is possible for us and our fears around it.
The following is a short list of what I hear from not just one person, but several; it isn’t an anomaly:
1. Long term relationships (marriage) where sex stopped years ago and it’s a roommate or friendly enough situation, that one can pretend to co-exist in by having enough other distractions available to them to make it bearable. (and if there is a lifestyle to be maintained with or without kids….people will put up with far worse and say its okay)
2. Relationships that are not based on a commitment to each other, although one person is definitely committed (and the other is supposedly torturing them)…and he or she stays committed even after the other person is out of their life.
3. Long term relationships, in which, it is a sexually open one and one person is cool with it while the other has grown a ton of resentment.
4. Being trapped in a relationship, because someone threatens suicide every time their partner thinks of leaving.
5. Living in a fantasy of the current mate suddenly turning into the partner of their dreams.
6. One partner being a parent to the other, so both are stuck in a disempowered and codependent situation. There is a great deal of anger and resentment, which comes as passive aggressive behavior or just passive….or just aggressive.
7. Staying in a relationship that is loveless…..while being in love with someone else.
8. Having some characteristics that are tolerable in a relationship, but fighting with oneself everyday to make those characteristics enough to stay.
9. My personal favorite and one I painfully experienced…the yo-yo relationship, the push/pull, the get close for a moment and be separated for days syndrome. The I love you so much, but can only be with you in limited amounts of time, or my head might explode from the intimacy…or happiness, or “insert word here.”
Again, this is just a short summary of all the ways we keep ourselves stuck in relationships, which are anything BUT based on LOVE. These relationships are about attachment, validation and fears from being alone, or being seen by others as a horrible person, parent or individual.
Some of these people may fantasize about being alone and at the same time, feel drawn to staying in a loveless situation.
If we want to figure out why they are putting up with such shitty circumstances, all we have to do is look at some of the following:
1. Models–how did our parents (or step-parent) treat each other when we were growing up?
2. How were we treated? Were we not given much emotional connection–were we shown love?
3. Did we swear to do the opposite of how our parents acted in relationships?
4. Did we promise we wouldn’t be like mom or dad and rebelled to the other extreme?
As children we soaked up this knowledge and in most cases, it was not a conscious effort…it was through our subconscious that we learned the rules…just like eating with a fork and a knife. This also means all the things we didn’t want, are enmeshed in our subconscious too, based on the modeling of the adults in our environment.
Many people hope something magical will come along, like another person (or death of the mate) and rescue them. They set a time in the future when they think it will be okay to walk away, except they never do.
Here’s the deal. The power is in being alone when it comes to a choice between having a relationship that is sucking our life energy away, or to choose ourselves. In choosing us, we have the freedom to discover why we were attached, why the other person or relationship held the key to our validation as a person and learn where our most basic fear of abandonment lives to solve the issues.
We can prolong these UNCHANGING situations, but the key is to start getting real. The thoughts we have around being alone and relationships will continue to be the same unless we do something different.
Being alone is not a forever statement. It is a beginning. The power lies in not just the learning of our painful beliefs, but in making decisions that are supportive of who we are, and away from the trajectory of keeping a shitty relationship together.
Sleeping in two separate bedrooms, or together with walls between us is a far worse fate than spreading out on a king size bed alone. There at least is an opportunity for someone to join us someday. And in the meantime, we get to CREATE a super-juicy life experience.
Seriously, whatever we’ve held back from doing while engaged in these relationships is no longer an obstacle, once we find the courage to own our life.