Should I stay in my relationship or should I leave?
That's a very, very powerful question and a very challenging situation to be in.
Maybe there's a lot of fighting, maybe there's financial troubles, infidelity or abuse, and you feel worn out or you feel like you're out of options. You may have fallen out of love with your partner and your heart is looking for something more.
So we often think about leaving.
We're also left wondering if we've done everything we could to save the relationship. Maybe there are children involved, maybe there is a money situation that prevents you from moving out or moving on… Maybe there's some fear, you know, when you look at a lifestyle change you might find that you're afraid of being alone.
So things are just really, really complicated.
It can feel like a tug-of-war sometimes between what our hearts tell us and what we feel is the right thing to do.
It's very difficult for us to know when the right time to leave is, right?
I know during my personal experience when I walked away from a relationship, I was at a tug-of-war between my heart and my logical mind. If I leave, will I be fine to stand on my own two feet? Am I emotionally intelligent enough? Do I have the resources to be able to do that?
So these thoughts in your mind, (and I know they did for me) they can go on for days, weeks, and maybe even for months. You know, do I stay or do I go? What things do I need to do? So that state of limbo between the two choices can generate a tremendous amount of energy drain. It can drag us down physically, of course, and mentally.
You know, you drag your butt to work and you aren't present for that moment. If you have children, you may not be present for them, and certainly, there are feelings of sadness and disappointment… wishing that things would've been different or would've gone differently.
So the gravity of the decision weighs on you very heavily and of course, they weigh very heavily to the people closest to you. When it comes to this particular dilemma, there are two critical decisions that need to be made and two critical mistakes that can be made.
The 2 critical mistakes to avoid when making your decision
Number one: allowing your logical mind to make the decision of whether you're gonna stay or you're gonna go.
You see, the logical mind doesn't allow you to keep yourself safe, per se.
If you're in a mentally or physically abusive relationship, the thought maybe
"Oh, you know, he's/she’s been better this month"
and so it looked like he/she was, it seems to you that there was an improvement.
So we kind of go running back into that burning building to get our favorite toy or our favorite DVD movie, you know? You persuade yourself through your logical mind to go back to that relationship and stay in that abusive relationship.
Our logical mind isn't always the best judge of what makes us happy and keeps us safe.
Love and attraction, fear, anger, disappointment are rarely those emotions that follow a critical mind path.
Logic is a very bad advisor when it comes to relationships.
Number two: allowing your friends and family to sway your decision.
It is very natural for us to want to speak to our friends and family in times of stress when we want to make a decision.
When you need to make a change or you wanna leave a relationship but you’re a very social creature, you can be influenced by society and what they tell us.
Maybe we're shamed for wanting to break a relationship through societal beliefs, religion, and old dynamics. Our friends and family can also follow that, and usually, they're the ones that will give us or try to give us the best advice.
In reality, they're only really using their own reality’s filter and their own experiences. Their motivation is driven by the compassion that they feel for us and by their own fears and their own subconscious agenda.
If they give you advice about your relationship, you may have to start asking yourself some difficult questions as well.
When the couple breaks up, it does send a ripple through the social structure of the family or the friend network. One friend may feel alienated from the other. One family member may not have access to children, so grandparents and aunts and uncles may be affected as well.
Some of your friends will actually go out of their way, strangely enough, to say, "Oh no, no, you should work it out and you should stick it out." Your family may do that as well so this is not very helpful to you when you're in times of limbo.
Logical minds and friends and family are not the best people to be able to help you decide whether you wanna stay or leave a relationship.
If you are in that situation, I send you love and compassion.
I hope this helps.