“You can’t change someone who doesn’t see the need to do so but you have control over your own decisions” – Bwalya B Sampa
I have always been amused by how much people regard my opinion on various issues such as relationships, career decisions and other pressing matters in which guidance is required. It’s mainly because I speak my mind and give my opinion based on what I believe as opposed to what you want to hear. Today I was assisting an old acquaintance from High School with a relationship situation she first brought to my attention last year. What she really wanted was a friend to talk to about her situation but truthfully speaking, she was looking for someone to sympathize with her or lie to her that things will get better. Unfortunately for her, what she got was a friend who is blunt and straight to the point.
From my discussion with this lady, I realized two things which I will note down below and explain later in detail:
- She was looking for a solution to help her partner change for the better. They have discussed an alcohol addiction that has affected their relationship from the beginning and there has been no change.
- She seems to be so dependent on her partner such that this behaviour ultimately affects her well being.
To start with, no one can change unless they see the need to do so. Most adults are aware of bad behaviours or addictions that they get into. The health labels on alcohol and cigarettes are so clear stating that it is harmful but yet we still partake in these substances excessively knowing fully well what the consequences are. Therefore, if someone wants to stop any of these addictions they need to accept that they have an addiction and should be willing to seek professional help. However, you on the other hand have no control on whether your partner decides to stop and seek assistance or not. If this behaviour is a deal breaker for you and is something that continues to cause problems in the relationship even after many attempts to help, then there is no point in holding on to something that doesn’t give you any joy.
The second and most important part of this situation is the dependency on a partner for all your needs and holding on because you have no other option. Here is the thing, do not get into a relationship when you have not found yourself or discovered who you really and truly are. Whilst you may think you are in love, truthfully speaking, you are only hanging on to the previous memories of when things were good and hoping that would come back because you do not know what will become of you when your partner moves on. Today I decided to hit the hammer on the nail and just tell my friend to find a life for herself and focus on being able to exist on her own. Self love is very important; being able to have a purpose and fulfill it, is what life is about. You can’t hang around waiting for someone to complete you. A relationship is about complimenting one another. It’s about compromising a few things in order to be together. It’s about developing one another and growing together in love. It’s never perfect, neither is it all roses throughout, but you need to decide what baggage you can handle. You can never truly love someone if you do not love yourself first.
Here are a few learning points to consider:
- Respect and love yourself enough to walk away from a bad & toxic relationship.
- You can’t change someone who doesn’t feel the need to do so.
- Find your purpose and learn to exist on your own.
- Pick your battles wisely and only invest in helping someone who is willing to change by making a visible effort to do so.
- Love is a beautiful thing if taken seriously by both parties. However, love cautiously.