If you recognize any of the following things in your relationship, it’s important to do something about them.
If you are secretly envious of your partner’s status, wealth, skills etc., this might feel like ‘attraction’ but in fact, it will undermine you and your lover. If there’s to be any chance of the relationship working well, this feeling is a signal to you to change your life to be more like the one you want, and/or to get some counseling on this.
Fear of Loneliness
If either of you is willing to put up with disappointment and/or change your basic nature to fit in with another person’s needs from a fear of being abandoned or alone, this is an expression of an insecure ‘attachment style’. It’s not a foundation for a good relationship and means you’re being dishonest and selling yourself short, which will inevitably lead to mutual recrimination and tears. Strangely, it’s when you’re most able to feel happy being alone that you’re likely to meet and be able to have a healthy relationship with, the right kind of person!
Narcissism, Borderline Personality Disorder and other types of mental illnesses are not as rare as you might think. These conditions can cause serious emotional pain and damage; learn about them and look out for look out for the warning signs in yourself or in your partner, so that appropriate help can be sought out before they sabotage the relationship or the people in it.
‘Hoping for the best’ from your partner, in spite of your instincts, others’ advice and the evidence —but not being willing to take responsibility for making changes, including possibly ending the relationship, will surely end in tears. Hoping for a different outcome while doing the same thing is what Einstein defined as ‘insanity’. And he should know! Procrastination is always tempting, but life’s too short and precious to waste in blind alleys
If either of you is idealizing or demonizing the other or using them to try to ‘fix’ your own painful memories from the past, e.g. the relationship you had with your parents, you are on a path to disappointment. A loving partner can reassure us about how much they value us and help us to learn to accept and appreciate ourselves, but no-one can fill another person’s inner ‘love deficit’ or the lack of self-valuing that can come from painful early family experiences; ultimately each of us has to do that for ourselves.
Hidden Power Struggles
These usually involve passive-aggressive behaviors which aim, in an unacknowledged way, to hurt or undermine the other person. The only antidote is to admit to these feelings to yourself and to your partner. We all have them to some extent, so they’re nothing to feel ashamed of, and from this place of self-acceptance and communication, you can begin to heal and move forward together.
Need For Validation
We can only accept and appreciate others, and be accepted and appreciated by others, to the extent that we accept and appreciate ourselves. If you don’t have this positive relationship with yourself, it’s essential to change it before even considering the serious possibility if having a relationship with anyone else!