I am going to start by saying that I strongly believe that couples who brake up should never get back together. You broke up for a reason, and unless somebody is going to change, it probably won’t work out again the second time. You say that he doesn’t trust you. Trust takes a lot of time to build or re-build so there is no easy fix for that and putting conditions on a relationship is not a good way to rebuild trust.
Love is not conditional. To put conditions on a relationship is to try to control it. He is trying to control you. Not only is he trying to control you, he is using the guilt factor to make you do what he wants you to do. He is taking all the power away from you. Relationships should be 50-50, give and take, NOT take, take, take.
Now, sometimes relationships need boundaries. There is a difference between making conditions and setting boundaries. Setting boundaries is saying “I am uncomfortable with (insert situation) so here is how I can be comfortable with that situation.” Putting conditions on your relationship is telling your partner “you have to do this or else.” Relationships should never, ever be conditional.
With any relationship, you both have the right to your feelings. In fact, I think it is time to share with you…
Your Personal Bill of Rights
- You have a right to all of your feelings. Even if you think your feelings are irrational, they should be validated by the ones that you love.
- You have a right to say no to anything you are uncomfortable with or you feel you are not ready for. Too many times have I said yes to things I shouldn’t have. Why? Because I don’t like being difficult. This is bullshit, and I should have known that it was. There is a difference between being difficult and protecting yourself and your beliefs. It is OK to say no. And when you do say yes, make sure you are not saying no to yourself.
- Life should not be motivated by fear. If you are afraid to lose this guy and he holds that fear over your head, then you need to walk away.
- Guilt is not a motivation for friendship or love. Guilt is one of the most common weapons used to motivate love. However, it is not love. It is control. This is a relationship, not a dictatorship.
- You have a right to terminate conversations with people who make you feel put down and humiliated. If he is making you feel like you are about an inch tall by using his weapons of guilt and conditions, then you have every right to stop him in his tracks.
- You are only human and have a right to make mistake. If you are like me, you hold yourself to a high standard. I have to remind myself constantly that I am not superhuman, no matter how hard I try. Mistakes are part of life. You made a mistake and you both need to put it in the past and move forward.
- You can be healthier than those around you. Being in a healthy place mentally might mean shedding the unhealthy friends around you. The same goes for shedding unhealthy boyfriends (and I don’t mean physically unhealthy).
- You have a right to change and grow. Never hold yourself back because of somebody else and how they believe you should behave. You can evolve on your own even if those around you are not following the same evolution.
- You can be angry at someone you love. You have every right to be angry at your ex and have the right to tell him your feelings, no matter what they are.
- You can take care of yourself no matter what circumstances you are in. ’nuff said.
- There is no reason to compare yourself to others. I know when you break up, it seems like the world puts happy, healthy couples in your path for, seemingly, you own personal torture. Let me break it down for you, every couple has their own problems. It is OK to be single.
- You have the right to create your own happiness and not rely on others to create it for you.
This is the big one. It took me a lot of years to figure this out. I was the queen of relying on others to make me happy, when, in fact, I had it in me all along to create my own happiness. As soon as I figured that out and took steps to make myself happy, my whole life changed. My relationships became healthier and I felt more confident in every area of my life. Happiness is what you make of it. YOU.
I keep this list of personal rights on my refrigerator so I can reference it when needed. It is easy to get caught up in the passion of the moment when things are shitty. This list helps keep me grounded, and I know it will help you too.
Do me a favor? Don’t go back to this guy. It is time for you to start a new chapter in your life. Getting back together is a gradual thing, not a fast and furious event riddled with conditions. Tell him that you are not OK with the conditions he placed on your relationship. Explain to him that you are better than any condition he can come up with and then wish him luck. It will be difficult to do, but you can only grow stronger for every obstacle that gets thrown at you. What do we ever learn when things are easy?
Stick to your Personal Bill of Rights and you will find yourself in a healthier relationship with someone else. But first, take some time to have a relationship with yourself. Ditch this guy and make a condition for yourself…never to date someone like him again.
What did you think about Robyn’s advice? Comment below and check back on Friday for Skippy’s advice!