If you’re reading this, you may be having some doubts about a difficult or unfulfilling relationship. No relationship is perfect all of the time and some amount of questioning or work is to be expected and completely healthy. However, how do you know when those relationship difficulties, and the stress and anxiety they are causing, become too much and the healthiest option is to leave?
There are many different stressors and dynamics in relationships including jealousy, controlling behaviour, co-dependence or other influencing factors such as stress, addiction or anger issues. Whatever the cause of difficulties in your relationship, how do you know when there’s a light at the end of the tunnel and when it’s better for everyone if you go your separate ways?
The following questions could help you come to a decision.
Is there something you’ve been trying to change about your partner?
It’s almost always detrimental to expect someone to change to please you. You can discuss your feelings and why it is important to you, but eventually you may have to accept the person for who they are. Then ask yourself, do the benefits of the relationship outweigh this flaw or is it a deal breaker?
The exception to this is wanting to change a behaviour that is actually damaging, such as alcohol abuse or aggression. However, you need to ask yourself are they willing and ready to change? If the answer is genuinely yes, then encourage them to get help and see where your relationship goes once the issues are dealt with. If the answer is no, it’s going to be very hard for you to force them.
Are your own issues getting in the way?
Are you tempted to leave your relationship because it is easier than facing up to some of your own issues? Perhaps a fear of abandonment, commitment issues or jealousy are making you feel that the relationship is not working, when in fact dealing with your own past and insecurities could offer relief and a new found appreciation of your relationship and partner.
Are you just avoiding hurting your partner’s feelings?
Some people spend more time looking after other people’s feelings than their own and this caring nature makes them reluctant to hurt others. Ending a relationship that’s no longer working for you is the kindest thing in the long term. You may just need help feeling secure in your decision and finding the best way to end things.
Are you afraid of being single?
Consider whether your own fears about being alone cause you to stay in unhealthy, destructive or unsuitable relationships. This is unfair to both yourself and your partner, so dealing with these fears will help you separate real feelings from ‘placeholder’ relationships.
Are you being manipulated or controlled?
Relationships have a way of evolving quickly and sometimes becoming out of control. Unacceptable behaviour can start to seem normal within the insular confines of a relationship. If you think this could be you, I would advise seeking help from myself or others.
Deciding whether to stay or leave a relationship is a big decision and we all want to be sure we are making the right choice. My advanced hypnotherapy sessions have helped many people explore their true feelings about themselves, their partner and their relationships – both current, past and future.
Understanding yourself and your own hopes is the first step to making this decision. Whether you would like sessions alone or couples therapy together, I can help. Please do get in touch for more information about the full range of options.