Brace yourself, this is a MAT article. (A Men Are Trash article, for the uninitiated…)
Ladies and gentlemen, tonight, we're going to spill some tea on relationships. Now, I'm not going to pretend that I'm some sort of guru with a roster of fulfilling, amicably concluded relationships to draw on. However, I am something of an expert on what not to. As such, I've found that the golden rule (as is the case in platonic friendships and filial relationships) is emotional honesty.
I'm not saying that we need to bear our soul every second of the day. You shouldn't have to release your every thought to your Person to feel like you're communicating, either.
But there's a happy middle ground somewhere between those spectrums
More still, in comparison with those in long-distance relationships, individuals who have unwittingly become part of an emotionally-distant relationship suffer more. This is because people in long-distance relationships still have communication, which is gold dust for relationships. It's precise because they know they're apart that they have to prioritise each other and make time. Indeed, as the distance amplifies silences and makes any dissatisfaction reverberate all the more intensely, it's really important to communicate when needs aren't being met. If one party feels neglected in a long-distance relationship, there's only one way to resolve that: tell your partner. Therefore, even with physical barriers, emotive, empathetic communication is a great, if not the only true, tool to negotiate these long absences.
However, if you have become acclimatized to an emotionally distant, neglectful, abusive, or apathetic relationship, there is no quick fix. This is because you feel trapped, trapped in your insecurities or concerns about the other person, and yet unable to communicate that. This is either because you feel that your concerns wouldn't be taken seriously, or you're just simply not comfortable putting yourself out there and rendering your emotions open in an honest and exposing way. Frankly, making yourself vulnerable is super hard, even if it's to friends you've known years or your own family. So it's no small feat.
I will not be your sloppy seconds – I deserve better
No one loves a love triangle. Just ask Twilight and The Hunger Games. Okay, maybe that was a poor example. For 15 year old me, that angsty YA trash absolutely slapped.
But in general, it's 2019. That's no place for cheating. Certainly not if the guy went ahead and fell for both of you. They think they're being grown up and mature by communicating that to you. Somehow, I think that they forfeited the right to maturity credit when they stopped being faithful. Monogamy isn't for everyone, in fairness – but that has to be discussed. You don't get to just decide the terms of the relationship. They are flexible and can be renegotiated if appropriate. But that's not one person's port of call. It's a two-way street, as ever.
Never settle for a cheater, They won't learn
Okay, everyone, please gather around and find a beanbag on my imaginative therapy room floor space. Roll with it. I'm about to spill some tea on the eternal wisdom of relationships. In particular, when to end them and what constitutes a red flag. You know, those relationship markers that signal something is deeply wrong, but because we're comfortable and afraid of change, we ignore them. Yep, those ones. Ready? I'm not – but let's go ahead and unearth our emotional triggers for the greater good anyway.
The long and short of it? Cheaters are the biggest 'no no'. there's a lot I'm willing to forgive in a relationship.
But not that breach of trust, Nope
We need to be better at recognising that we deserve better than what we sometimes get. Often, we might be investing more in ourselves and putting our time on the line for a relationship that isn't being reciprocated in the same way. Also, we often feel guilt for thinking about stepping away from such relationships, as though we are withdrawing a service that we 'owe' another person. We don't owe people anything in this world, not inherently. Not if they're not giving us the same in return, it's just not emotionally sustainable. You end up expending and exhausting yourself and having nothing left for yourself.
But back to the matter at hand. Relationships. I'm not saying that soulmates are a provable thing or that fate exists in the way that we hope it does. However, I firmly believe that too many women believe in that trashy quote from The Perks of Being a Wallflower.
You accept the love you think you deserve
Don't stick with this one just because you think he might be the 'only one.' That's nonsense. And – honestly, you aren't even the only one as far as they're concerned.
It's the harsh truth. But you have to get out of that situation, and get out fast.