You’re Doing Everything Right — So Why Is Your Relationship All Wrong?
There’s trouble in paradise, and you’re baffled because you thought you were just about to be crowned girlfriend of the year: You haven’t nagged; you’re true to your word; you treat him well; and you even let him man the remote. On paper, you’re doing everything right. So why doesn’t it feel that way? If you really are doing everything right, why is your relationship all wrong? Here are four important points to consider.
Don’t lose yourself
When many of us get comfortable in relationships, we often let go of our pre-coupled up routine. We go to the gym less, in order to spend more couple time. (Um... Why can’t you go to the gym together?) We see our friends less, individually and in groups, and we end up doing more double dates — or not going out at all. Remember that one of the reasons you captured your man’s attention, and his heart, is because he fell for you. So, don’t forget about yourself. And don’t forget about your friends, and your hobbies, and your life. Maintain your independence in your relationship, to both avoid suffocating him and becoming someone you’re not.
Stop trying so hard
Sometimes, the harder we work at a relationship the more issues it crates. For example, if you are needy and always want to spend every waking moment with him — and, worse, you complain every time you’re apart — you won’t make "with you" the place he wants to be. When people feel nagged, they feel attacked and become defensive. If you are trying hard to get him to do something, try to take a different approach — give him some space. Even though your intentions might be good, if you pressure him, it can make him feel cornered and uncomfortable.
Don’t let your thoughts get the best of you
The truth is that you very well might be a great, compatible and, dare I say, enviable couple. But when you spend too much time together, it’s easy to over-analyze each and every thing he does and says. If he’s spending all his time with you, chances are he cares very much about you. Stop trying to create problems, not to mention look for them. It’s OK to wonder here and there if he’s giving you enough attention — but think of all the times he is attentive and you might realize those thoughts are misleading you, while selling him short. Instead of looking for the wrong, realize how right things are.
Don’t force the wrong relationship to work
Hate to break it to you, little lady, but if none of the advice above leads to a change for the better (for you), he might not be the right match. In a balanced and healthy relationship, the partner observes, acknowledges and appreciates the good. If you’re doing things that you think he might appreciate, and getting no response, you may be misreading his needs. In a partnership, it’s important to predict each other's needs and take care of them before the other needs to ask. Perhaps what he needs in a relationship is different from what you need, and maybe it will always be that way. If that's going to drive you crazy, then this isn't going to work.
Jen Kirsch is a relationship expert, columnist and blogger. For quick tips and tricks, follow her on Twitter @jen_kirsch. Read her posts every Tuesday on Slice.ca.
Also by Jen Kirsch
• How Do You Ditch a Toxic Friend?
• How Do You Gracefully Bow Out of Your Own Wedding?
• The Hardest Part of Breaking Up Is Getting Back Your Stuff
• It's Time to Start Doing Your Own Dirty Work
• The Love Factor: 8 Relationship Warning Signs
• How to Get Over Losing "The One"