ALL relationships go through tough times.
ALL couples struggle.
As women, we know this.
We know that it’s up to us to keep working on the relationship.
Women are the emotional guardians of love. We never give up. Because it would be our fault if things didn’t work out. The guy is never responsible for the relationship; it’s always the woman.
That belief—that we have to hold things together, no matter WHAT—is responsible for a lot of unhappiness.
We feel pressure to stick with a relationship that should have ended long ago.
We bend over backwards to save a relationship that’s only hurting us.
Worse yet, we waste years of our life with the wrong man.
So how do you know if things are REALLY bad—as opposed to just the normal ups and downs of relationships?
You listen to your body.
It’s normal to get annoyed by your partner. It’s normal to need space from your partner. It’s normal to get mad at each other.
But what’s NOT normal is to feel stressed and anxious when you’re around your partner.
If you notice that being with him makes you tense up, or your heart starts beating a little faster, or you can’t completely relax, that’s a major red flag.
You’re experiencing fight or flight, a reaction that’s normally associated with danger.
Even if you love him, your body is giving you an important message:
You don’t feel safe with him.
In most cases, what we’re talking about is emotional safety.
Maybe your guy makes fun of you, or judges you, or puts you down.
Maybe he rolls his eyes at you, or mocks the things you love, or punishes you by going cold.
Maybe you just don’t trust him with your most intimate thoughts and feelings.
You can love a man you can’t trust, you can have great sex with a man you can’t trust, but you can’t build a happy and healthy life with a man you can’t trust.
You don’t deserve to be called names. You don’t deserve to be shown contempt. You don’t deserve to be made to feel small. That isn’t love. It’s control.
Talk to your partner before you decide anything. It may be that he doesn’t realize how his actions make you feel.
It also may be that he doesn’t care how his actions make you feel, because he feels justified acting that way.
At least if you talk to him, you’ll know.
We women are really good at making relationships work, but what we’re not so good at is seeing when relationships are hurting us. So listen to your body. Let it tell you whether you feel safe and loved.