Love Living, Quit Hating, Everyone Relating

Breaking Up Takes Courage

In Love on September 23, 2010 at 2:15 pm

 written by Sway

When it comes to break ups, there is no easy way to go through them. Depending on how much you and your partner are emotionally invested in your relationship, a break up could be one of the hardest things you will ever have to go through.

I have been both the initiator of break ups as well as the recipient, in my past experiences, and let me tell you, neither is easy to handle. Of course, the times where I was the recipient were hard periods of my love life. I still wanted to be in those relationships and felt like somewhere along the line I had failed as a girlfriend. There were many times where I felt like I was the reason for the break up. I would beat myself up for things not working out and took things personally. But at the end of the day I had to realize that sometimes it’s not about me. Sometimes you can do any and everything to keep a relationship together but it all comes down to being compatible with the needs and wants of the person you are with. If what you need and want out of a relationship doesn’t match the needs and wants of your partner, then it’s inevitable that the relationship won’t last.

Initiating a break up was sometimes a hurdle for me as well. But I found that the situations where I was an “Initiator of Want” were easier than those where I was an “Initiator of Need”. 

Let’s break these two types down:

Initiator of  Want– This is when you realize you no longer want to be with the person you’ve invested your time with.  It could be for a variety of reasons such as not being compatible, lack of desire, wanting to play the field, etc. So you want to get out of the relationship. If the break up isn’t mutual, it can be seen as you getting the upper hand out of the situation, because you’re getting your way. But being the initiator of a break up, isn’t always peaches and cream. You still have to have the courage to break the news to your partner and there is no easy way to do that.

Initiator of Need– This is exemplified in those instances where the initiator of a break up needs to get out of the relationship for various reasons. Between the two, this initiator has it harder when it comes to the break up, because they still have the desire to be with their partner but circumstances have made it hard for them to continue on with the relationship. Examples of some circumstances are:

  • long distance making the relationship hard to maintain
  • finding out your partner is a cheater
  • partner is physically or emotionally abusive
  • partner is withdrawn from the relationship

These examples are not limited, as there are several other instances that can be used to describe a situation for an Initiator of Need. Breaking up with one of my exes while being an Initiator of Need was one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do. Since the desire to be with him was still present and going strong, it was easy for me to rationalize why we should still be together. Even though our relationship had got to a point where there were more negatives than positives, through rationalization, I found a way to dismiss the negatives in my mind so that the positives would prevail. 

The truth was, these positive points of the relationship that I let trump the negatives, were of the past. The negatives were of the present. Essentially, I was lying to myself just to continue to invest in a relationship that was already crumbling. I was very much holding on to something that had dissipated. This only brought me more emotional turmoil. Luckily I was blessed to not have been in an abusive situation as holding onto a relationship like that is a very life threatening, dangerous thing to do.

So how does someone who is still very much in love, find the courage to leave any relationship circumstance listed above and be an Initiator of Need? It can be done if they were to answer these questions:

Are you more invested than your partner?

Has your partner done anything to you that has compromised the relationship?

Is your relationship stressing you out more than making you happy? This can coincide with another question….

Do the positives of the relationship live in the past and are the negatives of the present?

If you answered yes to any or all of these questions then ask yourself this one last question:

 

How much do you value yourself?

 

Loving someone who isn’t showing you love back (not just telling you they love you) is counterproductive to your life. Remember that you have goals and dreams you want to aspire to, and  the dead weight of a horrible or dangerous relationship should never be compatible with those wants and needs. Don’t use your love for this other person, or your hope that the situation will change, as the excuse (yes I said excuse) for being with them! If you want to stick around to see if things can change, then do it from afar….like from outside the relationship.

Stop investing in them and start investing in YOU. Invest in your feelings, esteem, sanity or anything else you think may have fallen by the waist side while being in this relationship. Remember that you deserve to be happy. Being an Initiator of Need takes a boatload of courage and strength and is so much easier said than done. But as long as you value yourself, your needs and your desires, you will realize that it can be done.

 

If you, or anyone you know is being physically abused, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−SAFE(7233) or TTY 1−800−787−3224.

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  1. This was a great read.
    It really helped put things in perspective and the separation between the need and want really clear things up for me

    Thanks.

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