How hard should a relationship be

9 Signs You’re Trying Too Hard To Make A Relationship Work

Sex & Relationships

Sometimes you need to be willing to walk away.

by Carina Wolff and Carolyn Steber


Originally Published: 


All relationships require effort and energy. You'll need to talk through problems, compromise, and encourage each other to grow. But it should never feel as if you're fighting an uphill battle, or as if you're changing who you are in order to get along. These are all signs you're trying too hard to make a relationship work, Jim Seibold, PhD, LMFT, a couples therapist, tells Bustle. And when that's the case, you may ultimately decide it's no longer worth it.

"Instead of trying to make a square peg fit into a round hole," Seibold says, it's often better to end a relationship and move on. The idea of letting go can be painful, and it's often tempting to double down and hold onto a relationship for dear life. "However, the longer a bad relationship goes on the more pain you will experience," he says.

Of course, there's nothing wrong with trying to resolve your problems, first. If it feels like there are ongoing issues, talk with your partner and share your concerns. You may be able to make a few changes and begin seeing eye-to-eye. Couples therapy can also be a big help, since it teaches you how to approach problems in a different, and more effective, way.

That said, if you've tried everything and still experience the issues listed below, it's a sure sign you're forcing your relationship to work.


You're The Only One Putting In An Effort

Ashley Batz/Bustle

A relationship is at its best when both partners are putting in the same amount of effort — you both come up with fun plans, you both want to work on problems, and you're both invested in the future. These are all signs of a fair and balanced relationship, Carolyn Cole, LCPC, LMFT, NCC, a relationship therapist, tells Bustle. One where both of you want the same thing.

If your relationship isn't working out, the balance will always feel off. You'll start to realize you're the only one who takes initiative, and it'll leave you feeling tired, frustrated, and alone. What's worse, your partner will either not notice, or not care to change once you point it out.

Of course, you may be tempted to hold onto them anyway, Cole says, especially if you feel like you've invested a lot of time. But keep in mind you deserve someone who puts in an equal amount of effort. In the right relationship, it will no longer seem like you're the only one who cares.


You're Overly-Accommodating

If it seems like your relationship is on the rocks, you might begin over-compensating by doing whatever you can to show up for your partner. As Cole says, this might include dropping plans you made with friends, and going to see your partner instead of the moment they call.

In other words, you'll become overly-accommodating by agreeing to do whatever your partner wants, and rarely speaking up for your own needs. This often stems from a fear that, if you happen to say or do the "wrong" thing or somehow come across as disappointing, your partner will no longer be interested.

Catch yourself right there, and recognize that this isn't a necessary part of a relationship, but a side effect of one that isn't working out. If you are constantly making your partner a priority, but don't get the same in return, the relationship is likely not right for you.


You Constantly Have To Justify The Relationship

Technically, you don't have to justify your relationship to anyone. It's between you and your partner, and whether or not it's "working" isn't for anyone else to decide.

You should, however, consider the opinions of friends and family, especially if they can't seem to understand why you're together. "They might have concerns about how you are being treated," Cole says, or they might notice that your partner isn't around as much. And having that outside perspective can be really helpful when it comes to evaluating the strength of a relationship.

The same is true if you're constantly making excuses for your partner's bad behavior. If this is an ongoing situation, be honest with yourself. Chances are, you know you wouldn't have to do that if you were with the right person.


You Constantly Fear A Break-Up

When a relationship is meant to be, it won't feel like a breakup is constantly looming on the horizon. So take it as a sign if you can't shake the feeling of impending doom, or if you start changing how you act around your partner in order to prevent something bad from happening.

Nobody wants to go through a breakup. But the brief pain that occurs at the end of a relationship is nothing compared to losing yourself in one that isn't right. According to Cole, you shouldn't have to walk on eggshells around your partner, or feel as if they'll leave you if you say or do one wrong thing.

Instead, try bringing your fullest, most real self to the relationship by sharing what's on your mind, speaking up about problems, and letting your personality shine. It's exhausting to live in fear, so work on being OK with letting go. And if that results in a breakup, so be it.


You Always Feel Anxious Or Depressed

Andrew Zaeh for Bustle

Similarly, feeling constant anxiety, sadness, or despair about the relationship is a sign that the dynamic between you and your partner isn’t working. It's possible you don't feel loved or supported, or you suspect something is going on behind your back. Whatever the case may be, bad feelings are a sign the relationship is, well, bad.

"If you’re avoiding your partner, shutting down, or finding yourself constantly fighting, it may be time to seek counseling," Shira Myrow MA, LMFT, a psychotherapist and co-cirruculm director or Evenflow, tells Bustle. Start there, and see if the relationship improves as you share what's on your mind.

You might come out on the other side of therapy with a better understanding of how to operate in a relationship — and way less anxiety and depression. But if you give therapy a try and still feel sad, go ahead and move on.


You Have A List Of Grievances That Never Get Resolved

You can't expect to see eye-to-eye on every little thing. But you and your partner should work on developing a go-to way of moving past problems so that the issues don't pile up. As Myrow says, "There needs to be a modicum of problem-solving in couples, otherwise, tension and resentment can grow."

Not every argument in a relationship is going to go your way, but if the same issues come up over and over again, and you can't stop thinking about them, then it might be time to be honest with yourself about where the relationship is heading.


You Consistently Put Your Needs Behind Your Partner's

It is important to be aware of your partner's needs, but remember you also have needs of our own, Seibold says. For example, you should feel free to see your friends, partake in hobbies, and carve out alone time for yourself. Doing so ensures that you maintain a sense of individuality in a relationship, and that contributes to a healthier connection

The thing is, this becomes harder to do when a relationship isn't working out, and when all of your energy goes towards fixing and forcing a connection. When you're worried about making your partner happy, or saving the relationship, you lose all sense of self. So if your entire day is spent bending over backward, it may be in your best interest to move on.


You Stop Talking About Problems

It's common to try to make a relationship work by sweeping problems under the rug, and pretending everything's a-OK. This is so much easier than addressing tough issues, admitting you aren't entirely happy, and potentially rocking the boat.

It's so easy to go on like this for years, never addressing the parts of the relationship that aren't healthy or fair. But, as Seibold says, it's important to take the risk and have these difficult conversations, since that's the only way you'll ever find solutions.

If you feel you can no longer be assertive or communicate freely with your partner, it's a sign that the relationship is headed south.


You're Constantly Hoping Your Partner Will Change

It's one thing to encourage each other to grow and improve, but that doesn't mean you should expect your partner to have a complete personality overhaul, or magically move past a giant obstacle in their life.

A relationship is all about acceptance, so you should go into it loving your partner for who they are. If you can't fathom being happy until they change, your expectations are never going to match up to reality, and you'll end up nagging them 24/7.

"If you are spending too much time trying to change your partner, it is not the relationship for you," Seibold says. "You will only feel more frustrated as the relationship goes on. " Your partner will also catch on that they are letting you down, and that's just not fair.

There's no one sign that indicates a relationship is over, but if you're noticing any of these red flags, it might be time to stop exhausting yourself by forcing something to work that just isn't meant to be, and give yourself permission to move on.


Jim Seibold, PhD LMFT, couples therapist

Carolyn Cole, LCPC, LMFT, NCC, relationship therapist

Shira Myrow MA, LMFT, psychotherapist and co-cirruculm director or Evenflow

This article was originally published on

Great Relationships Require Hard Work, But Not Forever

Source: Subbotina Anna/Shutterstock

When NASA launches a spacecraft, it uses about 90% of its fuel breaking free of the Earth’s atmosphere. After it clears the pull of this gravitational force, considerably less fuel is required, allowing it to travel great distances while expending far less energy.

This principle also applies to relationships: The early stages (after you pass the delirium of infatuation) are where the real work begins. That work is about committed listening, letting go of control, practicing vulnerability, overcoming resistance to change, being honest, even in the face of fear, and focusing on your own work rather than trying to change your partner. Like mastering any other new skill, it takes a lot to hang in there and muddle through the demanding times. The required effort is often great and the challenge can be daunting, leading many to conclude that it’s not worth it or that they don’t have the stamina and perseverance to work forever at this level.

Relationships, we think, should not have to be this hard. Well, that’s true: They shouldn’t be relentlessly difficult, at least not on a permanent basis, otherwise who, other than a masochist, would consciously choose to live in such a state of perpetual struggle? The bad news is that some degree of effort and agony is inevitable in most relationships. The good news is that it doesn’t have to last forever; it is generally a temporary, not permanent condition.

As we found out in researching our book, Secrets of Great Marriages, while most couples have experienced varying degrees of difficulty in their relationships, after they make it “over the hump," the downward pull of gravity diminishes greatly and the amount of effort and energy required to sustain and nurture the relationship is greatly reduced. Further, the experience of nurturing the relationship no longer feels like effort or work, but literally becomes a labor of love that feels more like a gift, a joyful opportunity for which we feel grateful and blessed.

This characterization may seem unrealistic or Pollyanna-ish to those still in the more challenging stages of a relationship, but from the perspective of anyone who has successfully transitioned to the more advanced stages of partnership, it is not only realistic, but absolutely attainable. In addition to the willingness to do the aforementioned work, two qualities are needed to hang in there long enough to get to the "gold" that committed partnerships offer—perseverance and trust.

Perseverance has to do with the willingness to make the sustained, necessary effort to confront the challenges inherent in the process, particularly in the face of discouragement, fear, and distress. Trust pertains to the confidence that there is light at the end of the tunnel, whether we can currently see it or not, and the understanding that persevering is worth the effort.

Cultivating any new skill—playing a musical instrument, learning a foreign language, mastering a sport or game—requires knowledge, diligence and practice. Developing the skill of effective relating is no different, even though it’s easy to forget that most of us are, to varying degrees, inexperienced and unschooled in this arena.

Because we may not think of relationships as something that you need to develop skills for, it’s easy to forget that this process is no different than the development of other competencies. We tend to think that if the feeling is there, then the relationship should just “naturally” thrive. But while it may be natural, most of us have developed some pretty unskillful practices in our attempts to fulfill needs that were not getting met in our relationship. Yet while loving another person isn’t enough on its own to ensure a blissful future together, we do have the ability to participate in our relationships in ways that strongly influence the degree to which they will thrive.

The amount of time that we spend in the early stages of this process and the slope of the learning curve has to do with our willingness and ability to learn the lessons that relationships continually provide us with. These lessons are about honesty, letting go, non-judgment, responsibility, commitment, compassion, risk, and openness—for starters. The more dedicated we are to mastering these learning opportunities, the faster we will internalize the skills and competencies that good relationships require.

As we integrate these abilities, replacing old defensive habits with new, more effective practices, the work becomes easier and more natural. We automatically begin doing the things that work and let go of habituated responses that no longer serve us. While this takes time and the process is gradual, if you can stick with it, the result is not only worth the effort, it’s beyond what most of us ever thought possible.

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Just such a strong love: healthy feelings or addiction?

Urgent need to be needed by another person. Addiction does not bring pleasure from the opportunity to be with someone together, help or support, but, on the contrary, causes suffering when there is no such opportunity.

Previously, in psychology, there was an opinion that a dependent relationship is when one person in a couple supports in one way or another the dependence of the other (from alcohol and illegal substances to gambling), mental illness, irresponsibility and other unhealthy patterns of behavior of the other partner. Now, when they say that someone is in a dependent or co-dependent relationship, they mean that a person is very afraid of losing a partner, overly relying on his support and approval. The components of such an addiction can be difficult to live with, but nevertheless it is not the same as “dependent personality disorder”, in which people feel completely helpless without the support of other people.

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Most of us are in dependent relationships to one degree or another. We all rely on loved ones, we are waiting for support, we want to tell our partner how the day went, and so on. The difference between painful addiction is the feeling of one's own inferiority when separated from a partner. In this case, the relationship ceases to bring satisfaction and serve as a constant source of anxiety. Such feelings are a signal that the relationship needs to be worked on.

To deal with an addiction in a relationship, the first step is to identify the symptoms.

© Obsession, 2004

  • Desire to please

You constantly think about what else to do to make your partner feel good, so that he sees what a wonderful person you are. Does he have some problem? You immediately undertake to solve it. You think that your partner appreciates you precisely because you are always there and will be able to resolve any of his difficulties, despite personal inconveniences and risks. You don't care about yourself and are willing to renounce anything to show you care. It sounds like a perfect romantic concept, but in practice, after all this, you feel empty or even exhausted. This is a natural reaction of the body, since, acting out of a desire to prove our “necessity”, we experience great stress. In a healthy relationship, there are other motives that allow you to act without such emotions (and often more effectively).

  • Belief that if you make a mistake, you will be abandoned

You are constantly trying, working on yourself, trying to do everything perfectly. You believe that if you make a mistake, act stupidly, then your partner will definitely leave you, because he will not be able to stay with "such a person." You think that only you are responsible for the relationship and should try not to lose it.

  • Difficulty making decisions on your own

If you ask yourself how you feel or what you want, it will be difficult for you to answer. You are often not sure what decision is better to make, whether to buy some thing or not, what is the best thing to do in a given situation, so you constantly ask your partner, check with his opinion. You want him to show you how to do it.

  • Conflict avoidance

You'd better keep silent than complain. Why say something is wrong? After all, there will be a conflict, so you think it’s better to give in and not say what you want. It is difficult for you to express your feelings, experiences and dissatisfaction.

  • Desire to be with a partner all the time

You want to be with your partner all the time, spend as much time with him as possible. You have already forgotten the last time you met with friends on your own or when you went somewhere. You do not rest from each other at all and almost do not spend time apart.

  • Breakups cause undue pain

Parting with a partner is a serious grief for you. Just thinking about it makes you step over yourself and go against your principles. You are literally ready to do anything to save the relationship.

  • Desire to control everything

Since the most important thing is not to lose relationships, everything can be used, including total control. You are driven by the desire to constantly know where the partner is, with whom he is, what he is doing, what he is talking about, what he is thinking about. You need to be aware of everything in order to be able to influence the situation.

  • Negative

The biggest difficulty in dependent relationships is that most often they deny the real state of affairs, and the partner and the situation are idealized. “We don’t have any addiction, I just love him very much.” It is very difficult to admit that there is some heavy component in such an expensive relationship.

© Obsession 2004

  • Education

Our perception of ourselves is formed through the reflection of us by our parents. When a three-year-old girl spins in front of a mirror and hears: “You are so beautiful,” then she will know that she is beautiful. When she hears: “You are so kind, you helped the girl find the doll,” she will know that she is kind. Collecting such assessments of parents in our internal piggy bank, we create an image of ourselves. And if we did not hear positive comments from parents or, on the contrary, received a lot of negative ones, then we begin to urgently need to hear such assessments from the outside. It becomes necessary for us to constantly hear how good, valuable, important and so on we are in order to feel ourselves as such. Compliments are great, but it’s bad when it’s hard for us to feel good without them.

  • Child injury

Some severe childhood traumas, an early break in relations with an important person, for example, the father left the family and stopped communicating with the child, could have influenced the formation of a tendency to dependency relationships.

  • Trespassing

If the parents do not respect the personal boundaries of the child, then, turning into an adult, he may be inclined to fall into a dependent relationship. When parents enter the room without asking, take things, get into the phone or personal diary with checks - this blurs the boundaries of the child, he gets used to this attitude and either tries to act in this way in adulthood, or expects the same from a partner.

© «Obsession», 2004

If there is a lot of passion, emotions, strong affection in a relationship and everything suits you, why can it be bad?

  • Emotional exhaustion

Dependent relationships can lead to emotional exhaustion, as they involve great sacrifice, constant concessions and actions contrary to oneself. Not caring for yourself in favor of caring for others also leads to exhaustion.

  • Not quite my life

If you think about others more than about yourself, keep silent about your needs and desires, do not pay attention to their realization, try all the time to be not quite yourself, but to correspond to the ideal image, then life becomes as if not quite your own.

  • You can be used

Research shows that most cases of psychological or physical abuse by one partner against another occur precisely in dependent relationships.

© "Obsession", 2004

Such symptoms, of course, can manifest themselves not only in romantic relationships, but also in any other. The problem solving steps that we offer are suitable for working on relationships of any format.

  • Start by identifying your strengths. Their understanding will give great support in the process of working on yourself and relationships. For example, people who try to please others often have a highly developed ability to understand others, their desires and experiences. This can be used to enrich communication with other people.
  • Analyze your symptoms of addiction. Think about what you think are signs of a healthy relationship. What is important to you in such a relationship? How could moving into such a relationship enrich your life? Answering these questions will help you increase your motivation to work hard on yourself and relationships.
  • Learn to give yourself positive feedback and support. It's very difficult. Try to celebrate your victories, even the smallest ones. Praise yourself for them, even if it seems silly at first: constant repetition can help you become less dependent on other people's evaluations.
  • Think about what you do for yourself. Write a list of ways you can take care of yourself, make yourself happy. Maybe you have long wanted to go somewhere or try some new activity? Please yourself. Remember what brings you pleasure, what you like to do. Make time for your wants and needs. Try to do at least one thing for yourself every day.
  • Work on personal boundaries. Think about when you feel uncomfortable with your partner. When he raises his voice or speaks in a rude way, do you remain silent, but do you feel bad? So there must be a boundary here. How do you usually react to its violation? Think about what new rules you need to establish in order to feel better next time in such a situation. Do you want your partner to take a break before going into another room, or to apologize for being rude? Tell him about your thoughts.
  • Psychotherapy is best suited for working with addictive relationships, as it helps to track what is in the blind spot and get out of denial of problems. Most people in addictive relationships don't realize that they can do things to increase the addiction. The psychologist helps clients try new behavioral strategies to turn the tide and improve the quality of the relationship.
  • If alcohol, drugs, gambling and the like are involved in your relationship, then it is better to turn to special programs for working with addictions, for example, 12 steps. In difficult situations, it can be very important to see other people with similar problems in order to understand that you are not alone, to be inspired and to fight together.

In any case, working on dependent relationships first leads to an uncomfortable and difficult state, since it is very difficult to break such a familiar and comfortable order of things. But in the end, relief always comes, and life becomes better, since healthy relationships are a source of a sense of harmony, fulfillment and happiness.

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Mikhail Labkovsky: In relationships, we want to repeat the feelings we experienced in childhood - Maria Surmina - Project events - Site materials - Snob

The role of relationships in human life

that by nature we are social beings. Back in school, we were taught that the need to have a relationship is genetic. And various kinds of dissenters who need to be alone or hermit are treated by psychiatrists as inadequate: this is common among religious fanatics or those who have very painful relationships with other people. They prefer to say, "The more I get to know people, the more I love animals." A healthy, mentally well person has a desire to have a relationship.

Beyond that, the ideas proposed by the healthy and the neurotics diverge. Because, firstly, in any relationship there is a certain meaning, and secondly, their role in life is greatly exaggerated by those who lacked parents in childhood (they were either physically absent or were cold people). Many women believe that relationships are the only thing that exists. Self-realization, career, money - everything is meaningless, they acquire significance only in the absence of relationships. Due to the fact that many did not receive parental care in childhood, they now have an exaggerated attitude towards relationships: they are dominated by an obsession - to have someone nearby. At the same time, in comparison with women, men's priorities are slightly shifted: at the expense of work, the desire to receive money and other life attitudes. If a person, in principle, did not have such problems with his parents (he is healthy), relationships play a secondary role in his life, and self-realization comes first.

What lies behind the desire to have a loved one

Entering into a relationship, subconsciously people want to get money, care, attention, a roof over their heads - and at the same time do nothing. In fact, all this has no value: only emotions, experiences and feelings have it. Desiring a relationship, neurotics want to return to childhood and experience the sensations experienced earlier again. Healthy people are looking exclusively for mutual love, so they have no problems entering into a relationship.

Many women wonder where to find a man. When a person has an openness to relationships, the ability to live together with someone, then relationships arise on their own. For example, Nadenka, the heroine of the film “The Irony of Fate, or Enjoy Your Bath”, has been without a man all her life and has been left without him: she does not need her fiancé Ippolit. She needs a man who can fly drunk to another city, because before him she had already met a married man. She is a sufferer in life, everyone lowers her: “What a muck this is your aspic fish!” She liked the holidays only because she spent them with a married man. And her new lover Zhenya is just like her. Firstly, he has a fiancee, and secondly, he himself does not really understand what he needs (his mother wants him to get married). Women like Nadia need a deaf-blind sea captain, because they never had relationships with men in their childhood or had bad ones with their mother.

The key to a happy life to the grave is not in compromises, but in a stable psyche. Only in this case can you love the same person all your life. If the psyche is unstable, you can stop loving in five minutes, or simply something will start to dislike in a person. And in the future it will lead to divorce.

On the problems of unhealthy relationships

Neurotics can have many reasons for not having relationships, one of them is that they are simply not ready, although they themselves do not understand it. They are afraid to make connections: “I don’t meet strangers.” Express fear of sex: "I don't have sex without love, and I don't love you." May have painful experience: "I'm afraid of a new relationship."

If they still manage to enter into a relationship with the opposite sex, many soon break up, because they find flaws in the partner. The search for a flaw is a protective function of the psyche of a person who is afraid of relationships. He may be irritated by a crooked toe on his left foot or a new smell. Men often like to brag about having one-time sex, considering it a feat. In fact, it is the same inability to have a relationship. Moreover, in sex they behave like children who are looking for their mother. Womanizers say: "I'm fine," arguing a new break with the "excessive bitchiness" of the lady and not looking for reasons in themselves. It is hard for them to admit that they are not ready for family life, and not just "have not found that person." The same happens with women.

Many of us, in principle, are not able to have a family, just as the heroes of Andrey Myagkov (Zhenya) and Barbara Brylskaya (Nadya) could not. Nadia's childhood experiences are suffering and self-pity. And the person who loves her and wants to make her happy cannot give her these feelings. She does not need love and care, but wants to constantly be in limbo. Such people cannot have relationships or families due to a difficult background, for example, unpleasant memories of the parental family. Men, in particular, are scared off by women who start to take care of them too much, because they are used to a cold mother and they never sit down at the dinner table as a family.

The famous "childfree" trend is people who are against having children. It seems to them that they have such a concept, but in reality a difficult childhood affects.

About the consequences of unhealthy relationships

Neurotic experiences flow into the presence of painful relationships. It begins to seem to a person that the partner wipes his feet on him: he does not call back, disappears, comes once a week just for sex, does not introduce him to friends or parents, does not feed. That is, he feels that he is being used. Such an attitude develops because he himself wants it: he likes to sob into the pillow when his partner leaves, sort things out, wait until the bell rings - these are those childhood experiences: how his parents abandoned him, gave him to a boarding school, took him to his grandmother . Such relationships are hopeless, they end in nothing. A man in such a situation will not propose to a woman, because he sees that there is no need to take on any obligations, since everything suits her anyway. He understands: she will be a little naughty, weep, and then accept.

Such situations are ridiculed in humorous programs: a man leafs through his notebook in search of a one-night stand who will definitely not refuse him, calls her - she agrees. Why cry after that? So there was no need to agree. But, just as she waited six months as a child for her mother to visit her, so now she is ready to wait another ten years for him. At the same time, it seems to her that she is being treated poorly, but in fact this is her need for a relationship.

The same happens when a girl communicates with a married man. Or if she agrees to an “open” relationship, but really wants a family, she will most likely not get married. She agrees to these conditions because she is afraid to be alone: ​​no one knows how life will turn out with a new chosen one, but she seems to love this one.


What to do if a woman understands that a man is using her, but still cannot end the relationship with him?

A situation in which “he didn't call back” means the end of a relationship for a healthy girl, the beginning of love for an unhealthy girl. There is a conflict here: the narcotic need to be near this man. In this situation, you need to introduce a rule: if you don’t like something, you must say about it once; if the person's behavior does not change, make a serious decision. Whining with the phrases “well, you promised”, “well, we agreed” is useless: this is how you talked in childhood with your parents, who did not take you to the zoo for three years. Here the situation is simple: I feel uncomfortable - I'm talking about this, if the behavior does not change - you need to end the relationship. At first, you will be sausage because you, as an addict, need these emotions, the main one of which is self-pity. But if you practice this behavior, then quickly enough let go of the situation, and men will begin to treat you differently. Because when his mother said something to him, but he did not do it, she did not sob into the pillow, but walked and beat him on the head with her hand.

What to do if a person is already married and has a family, but something in his partner's behavior starts to annoy him? Do not get divorced if he champs or scatters socks. Is it worth giving up?

It seems to you that if a person starts kicking you, then this is a reason for divorce, but if he champs, then you can be patient. Any annoying little thing can become a trigger. In fact, you and your husband have a real internal conflict, but there is nothing to complain about, because he behaves correctly. The psyche is arranged in such a way that it immediately finds what to throw it into. You tell him, "Don't slurp," and he continues. You need to disperse. Otherwise, your children will live in an atmosphere of terrible hatred and not understand why parents are constantly in conflict.

There are situations when the husband wants to watch football and the wife wants to watch ballet. If it is not possible to buy two TVs and the situation repeats itself, you have married the wrong person. There are systemic problems that show that you are incompatible in an ideological sense. If the action is one-time, you can close your eyes to it; if it is repeated, you begin to live in conflict not with your husband, but with yourself.

There are two ways out of your situation. Animals have two reactions: they either fight or they run away. There are no throwing and deep feelings: they quickly assess the situation and make a decision. You can accept circumstances, but not come to terms with them: you will scatter socks and slurp together. At the same time, you should like what you are doing, otherwise you need to change your husband. Scary is another matter.

According to your rule, I told the young man exactly what I didn't like about him. He changed behavior, but only for a few weeks, after which he disappeared. After some time, he appeared, began to call often and make attempts to come. I understand that I do not want to continue the relationship. How to stop reacting to his actions, if feelings still remain?

In my article, I wrote that if I manage to change a person's libido, then most likely I will receive a Nobel Prize. I managed to do it myself. Some time ago I fell in love with a very nice girl, there were no complaints about her. But twice she did the same thing: we agreed to meet, we have to phone - she does not pick up the phone. A few hours later, she calls back and says that she is late. The next day the situation repeats itself. She broke off my childhood feelings and did it not on purpose: living alone for a long time, working hard, she got used to not being dependent on anyone. And I don't blame her - it's her life. But after what happened, I realized that I didn’t feel anything for her, which was a shame, since I liked her. We tried again, but the feelings did not return, the psyche slowed down.

You need to break yourself. You feel resentment that he does this, but for you he is a man, because he makes you suffer. I, apparently, also liked this feeling, but I got rid of it. For people who love those who love them, the rest is an empty place: they feel nothing for them. The psyche is always stronger than a rational act, and everything that we think does not make any sense. In order to change your attitude, it is necessary in such situations to start behaving differently: when something does not suit you in life, you need to break off the relationship without bending.

We are all shaped by the daily repetition of our parents' behavior - it has shaped our mental responses. Try to do the same with yourself: behave in a certain way, and thus force the psyche to form new neural connections and new mental reactions.

After the end of the relationship, there was an inner need for an apology from the partner: he deceived me, and then just left. How to stop feeling this need?

From his point of view, he did not offend you, and in some ways he is right. My girlfriend didn't do anything to me either. Many neurotics believe that everything is done to them on purpose, but this is not so. It’s just that the person is the way he is: no one is to blame for anyone, you just don’t suit each other. You still like him, but because of his deceit, you understand that he will continue to do this to you. And you think right. Only arrogant women believe that everything will be different with them - it won't.

Enter a rule for yourself: if you don't like something, don't do it to your detriment. I didn’t like that he deceived - do not pay attention to emotions, try to forget about him. For a while, by inertia, you will still feel resentment and think that everything could be different. You are attracted to him because you have the desire to suffer. When you act according to the rules, it will pass.

I am 38 years old, never married and have no children, but I want to give birth in a strong family. How to build healthy and honest relationships?

First you need to build them in your head: you need to understand what your life looks like. Everything that you experience in relation to yourself, you need to learn to experience in relation to men. For example, if you don't love yourself, you don't love a man either; think that love must be earned - he must prove that he is something; you are mentally unstable - you will select such a partner.

Today marriage is built on a love-dislike relationship. Initially, marriage had nothing to do with feelings: it was done for the sake of increasing the community, procreation, trying to improve one's life, so the selection criteria were health, wealth, good heredity, and generosity. If you want an honest relationship and a strong family, you must have an honest relationship with your brain and a strong family with yourself.

What is the right way to treat my wife's previous partners?

The problem is not with her sexual partners, but with your insecurity. In the Caucasus and in many other countries, there is an obsession with marrying a virgin so that a man does not have complexes: she has no one to compare with. It's a self-esteem issue. If you, as a man, feel complete, you don't care who was before, because now you have been chosen.

How to choose a partner if a person feels that he is neurotic?

All my life I have loved those who did not show mutual sympathy in return. This is due to the fact that my mother was always unavailable to me and I tried to win her attention. I got over it: I am no longer attracted to people who are not interested in me. The person you love should evoke some association with childhood. Stick to your feelings.

The World Health Organization considers being in love a complete absence of reality - it is a temporary mental disorder. Even if you experience joy, you still perceive the person inadequately: you perceive not him, but your attitude towards him. If you start to act according to the rule “if you don’t like it, goodbye”, you will quickly run out of it.

How important is equal social status in society for relationships?

Here are some examples. Jean-Jacques Rousseau, as an experiment, married an illiterate peasant woman, she ended up taking part in his murder - such a version existed after his death, most likely this is not true, but characterizes their relationship. Another: Natalia Vodianova was asked if she could marry a locksmith, to which she replied: “Of course! Where would we meet?" I believe that, like Lenin and Krupskaya, common interests play an important role. At the stage of falling in love, there is no difference: a person does not think about what his partner is like and who he works for. Then there is a transition from sympathy to perspective, from childhood to adulthood.

If both partners are neurotic, is it possible to somehow get along and find a common language?

Millions of people around the world are in neurotic relationships. Many from their very birth lived so badly and hard that they consider them absolutely natural. They do not feel neurotic, on the contrary, they think that all people with shortcomings, quarrel and conflict. Zhora Kryzhovnikov, the author of the films "Bitter", "Bitter-2" and "The Best Day", wrote comedies about psychos, but they live like that. All the characters are sick in the head, but at the same time they have feelings and they are in a relationship. Unfortunately, most people are used to suffering, it seems to them that this is normal.

Our literature, theatre, cinema and music - our whole culture contributes to this. Prominent representatives are Tolstoy and Dostoevsky. The first one constantly brought his wife up, and did not communicate with the children until their twentieth birthday. On the other hand, he hung out with peasants, engaged in demagogy and absolutely did not correspond to what he writes about. But he fought with himself. The second took jewelry from his wife and lost them in cards. Life is not the way they describe it, although they write brilliantly. The idea of ​​suffering is a Russian trait. Orthodoxy, which cultivates suffering, also plays a huge role. Most people suffer and die without knowing another life, without neuroses and manipulations.

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