Posts Tagged ‘bad situation’

Leaving a Bad Relationship

Thursday, October 11th, 2012

Nearly eight years ago I walked away from a bad relationship. I had been warming up to the idea of leaving for about a year. I kept thinking of reasons to stay. I’d see a ray of hope and latch on clinging to it for days until the ray dimmed and the down cycle began again. I waited through each bad cycle hoping again for another glimmer to emerge. These cycles were my lot inside this particular relationship and it took me a long time to realize that all my hoping was doing nothing more than keeping me stuck. I had to get through enough of the up and down cycles until I “got it.” Eventually I understood that the relationship was nothing more than a series of very short good cycles and much longer bad ones.

It’s hard to give up hope when you care for someone. It is painful to face the reality of what is clearly a losing proposition. We all need hope in our lives; it keeps us going and encourages us to move forward yet we’ve all got to face that staying in a bad relationship is a waste of precious time. The relationship I had was never going to bring me anything different than what I’d already experienced–why in the world would I want that?

I knew it would be better for me to stop the cycles cut my losses and walk away. Yet what prevented me from leaving was my dread of facing the end. I didn’t look forward to the misery I was sure would follow; I didn’t want to experience the emptiness I was certain would be mine to come. Looking back, it’s like I stepped on a bee got stung wished later I’d been wearing shoes but continued to walk around barefoot.

So even though my immediate thought was to keep things status quo in order to avoid pain I knew that long term suffering would have been the outcome of staying.

With the breakup came wisdom, courage, and hope. This hope wasn’t misplaced; it was hard-won. I learned that any relationship is not better than no relationship. I also learned that healthy relationships require paying attention in all aspects of life. It’s not hard to make good relationship choices but it does take knowing what you will and won’t accept and sticking with it.

Relationship Killers

Monday, March 5th, 2012

Relationship killer #1–letting your emotions get the best of you. Once the words start to flow you lose control like a runaway train. There is a point where you realize what you’ve done and pull back but by that time it’s often too late.  If you believe you’ve said too much stop talking. Wait, observe, and listen to what your partner has to say.

Relationship killer #2–Saying too little or nothing. For many this appears to be a safe option. The problem is that as you continue to go along with things as they are, frustration and resentment keep piling up and slowly destroys what may have initially been a vibrant relationship. You both  sink into mediocrity and monotony with the relationship eventually dying. This option will take a drastic toll on you.

Using the train analogy in killer #2, your partner is the runaway train and you’re standing on the tracks waiting to be run down. You see the train coming but do nothing to get out of the way. Eventually you’re knocked down flat on the tracks.

The best option is to avoid both of the above. Say what you need to say to your partner as respectfully as possible. Don’t allow fear to stand in your way. Confrontation is not pleasant but neither is staying in a bad situation much longer than you should have. There is a chance that by standing up and letting your voice be heard, you will allow healthy change to occur.

Once you’ve said what you needed to say stand by your words. You can’t expect your partner to be a mind reader; they need to know what the problem is.

If you don’t believe you are safe enough in your relationship to confront your partner seek help, determine your next steps, and create an action plan.