Breaking up is hard to do after your feelings for the other person have developed past a certain point. It should be expected that breakups are going to be messy, but before you get there, there needs to be a period where you have to sit and ponder if a breakup should even be a possibility.
Personally, I’m horrible at taking time to think before I decide to cut people off whether it be in relationships or friendships. My longest relationship was a bit over 2 years and we ended abruptly without further discussion into what happened, what went wrong, and, most importantly, whether the relationship could be fixed. That was a mistake and I was very close to making that same mistake again this week.
The honest truth is that sometimes it’s easier to just give up and to just say “fuck it”. If you’re at a point where you’re thinking about ending things and discuss it with your friends, chances are they will agree with you. They want the best for you and if you explain a situation as not “being the best”, they’re going to want you to take yourself out of the equation.Before you decide to throw in the relationship towel, answer these very important questions:
What Are You Really Mad About? – Oftentimes, our SOs gets underneath our skin to a degree that becomes unbearable. From simple irritations to the more extreme relationship offenses, it’s always important to identify not only what action is causing you to be so upset, but also what about that action has brought you to this place. For example, it’s another night and you have no clue where your SO is or what they’re doing and you’re irritated because you miss them and want to connect with them.
The action itself (or lack thereof) is great enough to cause concern, but really what is it about not knowing what your SO is up to that bothers you? Are there trust issues in the relationship that have not been addressed? Do you think he or she is being inconsiderate or doesn’t take you into account before doing things? Are you irritated because you wish your SO would check in more or make more of an effort to communicate? Whatever the underlying issue is, define it and be able to verbalize it in a way that can be communicated. This is important not only for you to discuss with your SO, but also important so you can decide if the issue is big enough to escalate further.
Have You Addressed Your Concerns With The Person? – Usually, the answer to this is yes if you’re at a place where you’re ready to break up. However, there’s a difference between: “I hate when you’re inconsiderate and ignore my calls” and “I know that you care about us and this relationship but I don’t think you realize how it makes me feel when I don’t hear from you often.” One inspires defense, while the latter actually engages the person in a conversation where they are listening to you.
The point here is to address your concerns in a way that does not accuse or make your SO feel attacked. Once a person feels like their guard must be up, you’ve lost the battle before you’ve even finished making your case. Address your concerns like you’re on a team trying to solve a mutual problem before deciding to call it quits.
If It Is A Recurring Issue, Has Your SO Tried To Genuinely Change? – Recurring issues are harder to deal with because once you’ve forgiven them once or twice for the same thing, the message is sent that it may have not even been that big of an issue to begin with. When does enough become enough? When do the same dirty clothes thrown haphazardly across the bedroom floor every afternoon translate into pure disrespect and inconsideration for both you and the relationship?
There’s no easy answer to this and every situation is different. Your feelings are all that you have to go off of and if you feel like your SO is worth fighting through whatever recurring issue your relationship is facing then the simple answer is to stay. After awhile, even the best relationships are no walk in the park and no matter who you are with, you’re going to bump heads with them on one or several recurring issues. However, you should also be able to tell the difference between a bad habit you can grow to tolerate, a bad habit/personality trait you have a real issue with that you can’t tolerate, and a relationship with a person who genuinely wants to be with you and tries to supplement their bad habits with good habits that bring you joy.
I lost sight of the difference between those this week and almost let my frustration ruin a good thing. Thankfully, the success or, in this case, the failure of a relationship does not rest solely on one person.
Is The Issue Bigger Than Your Relationship? – Pretty straight forward. Some issues that come up aren’t difficult for you to come to the conclusion of a break up and they shouldn’t be. It’s hard when a partner or someone we put our trust in does something serious enough to destroy it, but when that happens you have to be honest enough with yourself to let go. Issues become bigger than the relationship when one person chooses to no longer care about the consequences of their actions. Whether it is something small or something large, the moment a person stops putting in as much work as you or constantly disrespects you or the relationship, it is time to move on.
About Carla Clunis
You can find more of Carla’s musings on love and relationships at www.theheartmalfunctions.com where she blogs about the ups and downs of dating and relating.
—— By: Carla Clunis