Everyone is calling me these days to ask me my advice on how to keep their marriage going. I don’t know …..do I have a sign on my head that says I’m the relationship expert? It seems that way. Friends are calling me asking me what I regretted in my marriage, picking my brain to see what suggestions I can offer them. People wanna know….how do I know it’s time to let my relationship go or how do I keep my relationship alive. I guess you would have to know my story to understand why everyone is coming to me. My marriage was….hard…..there are things I could have done better and things I shouldn’t have done at all. When the hubs died I had a lot of time to reflect on some of the mistakes I made and I regret a lot of things…not just a few things but a lot. My marriage wasn’t perfect and it wasn’t all good either. We had more bad times than good but it taught me a lesson…..one that I will share in the future for right now….the main thing people are asking me is how do I let my relationship go without hurting anyone. When do you know it’s time to move on? Here is some of what I have learned….(I am not an expert in relationships this is just some advice I can give after being married for 10 years and seeing what not to put up with and what you can put up with)
When it’s affecting everyday life – You should not have headaches and be stressed out every single day of your life when you are with someone. If you are stressed out…..it’s time to make some changes. Talk to your significant other and find a way to compromise on things or talk without yelling. Marriage should not be stressful. If your wife or husband is stressing you out about bills, household things, problems that other people are having sit down and say look this is a stress free environment. If you use to do things that made you happy and now you no longer do them because someone is stressing you out….it may be time to let that relationship go. Talk about what’s stressing you and go to counseling if you need to but if things don’t change and your partner doesn’t feel the need to listen to you about what’s bringing you down….then leave
When you start questioning things – Do you really love me? Why are we married again? What do you love about me? Let me see your phone….now I am not a person that snoops but trust me when your gut tells you something is up…trust your gut. If you have to question your husbands whereabouts that tells me you don’t trust him…without trust you don’t have a relationship. If you have to ask him if he loves you to me that’s a sign that something is causing doubt in your mind. Address it! Nothing is wrong if two people fall out of love or find themselves on different paths in life. That’s call change and some folks can’t grow with us no matter how much we love them or want them to. If you are starting to question things then take a look at those questions address them with your partner and see if you can answer the questions without leaving anything to doubt. If you find yourself regularly visiting the idea of life without this person, it’s time to be honest. Maybe you feel bad because you can’t truly explain why this persistent thought pops up in your head that’s understandable and you can always address those feelings with your partner
When you don’t see a future together or not growing together – You have to grow together or you will grow apart! Do I need to repeat that? If you are married to someone and you start off living in an apartment and you are still bouncing from apartment to apartment 6 years later without a steady job, stream of income, or plans for how you will own a home….it’s time to really sit down and figure out if this relationship is for you. Growth is important in any relationship if we aren’t growing towards a bigger and better future then what are we doing. Why are we together? (goes back to the one above….remember questioning things) If we have been together for 3 years and I ask you what do you see for our future and you give me a nonchalant answer…I will be kinda pissed and start to question if I need to leave now or give you a few weeks because I want to grow.
When you can’t forgive them – This is a big one. Whatever someone does in your relationship cheating, not being there for something important, saying something that hurts you, etc. You have to forgive them or move on. Sometimes it’s hard to forgive them while still living in the same house. It’s ok to take a break for a min. and focus on forgiveness for yourself and for the one you love. You have to learn how to forgive or learn how to leave gracefully. Holding on to whatever that person did and creating an atmosphere of harshness can create hell for your relationship (trust me I lived in it for a long time) Forgiveness takes strength, and sometimes the feeling of betrayal completely overshadows our ability to forgive.
Relationships are hard. Start with being friends first it’s vital that the two of you are best friends because that friendship will sustain you going forward. There is nothing like being married to your best friend whom you can talk to about anything. If your partner is not your best friend…..you need to rethink some things.
What can you add to the list? When do you know it’s time to let that relationship go?