Thank you for your great work, I am a 29-year-old man and I have been in multiple relationships in the last five years. I must admit that I'm the problem, since all the women I loved were committed to me.
This year alone, I have been involved with three women; they loved me and the relationships were okay, but I broke things off. This turn of events has made me worried about my future, I'm not contented with my relationships and I end them pretty fast. I am seeking to turn over a new leaf in my life but I don't know how to go about it.
I would like to change my life and have a better perspective of life. Please walk me through this journey to becoming a better man.
What you are sharing in a way seems to shed light on what is happening in most relationships today. Studies show that many relationships end without bringing those involved the intended fulfilment and joy. As a result, many have been left disappointed, hurting and feeling betrayed.
Your desire to live and act differently is noble. However, the desire to change is just the beginning of the journey to establishing a new course for your life. Desire must give birth to a need to identify what makes relationships stick for you. This is essential because you can’t change what you don’t know. In addition, desire and identification might lead to a determination to do several things:
First, lay down a new course for the life you would like to live. This must be accompanied by the things that you need to avoid and those you need to start doing. For example, what activities that influence you negatively should you stop when you relate with women? Replace these with new habits that will make you trustworthy.
Second, build habits based on your new values that will grow you and make you the man you would like to be. For example, build commitment that results in long-term love; embed true love and appreciate other people’s gifts and differences; adopt a learning instead of a know-it-all attitude; strive to build each other rather than use each other to achieve your ends; strive to build a team; strive to offer unwavering support to each other; and learn each other’s love language.
Couples in successful marriages should accept and understand that relationships are not easy, and that conflict is inevitable. The fact that you do not agree on an issue does not mean that you are totally incompatible. Look for, and inculcate areas of common agreement into your relationship and let this grow with time. You should not feel the pressure to change your partner just because you do not see eye to eye on an issue. Changing yourself in areas where you notice the need helps the relationship more. The good feeling comes when you putting in place the other foundations of relating such as the right values, habits, and practices that build trust.
Should I listen to his relatives and marry him?
Good work you are doing. I am a mother of one. I was forced to quit my first relationship since things were not working. I decided to give myself some time to heal, and it has been six years now. Two years ago, I met this man with whom I became friends. He has gone through a lot in his marriage and decided to move on. We have discussed his marital challenges and I have tried to persuade him to sort them out, since no one is perfect.
Through this journey, I have strived to prevent him from settling my monthly bills, and even school fees for my child but he keeps insisting. But I have refused, although I earn a small salary while he earns a lot. He treats me like a good friend and is open with me, and I sometimes lend a hand when he is in a total crisis and also he does, but only rarely. I have met his close relatives, who keep asking me to settle down with him. He is years older than me. What would you advise?
There are several concerns that arise from your e-mail. First, this man is married and has issues to deal with in his relationship. I am sure you will agree that your being in his life is a distraction for him. There is no way he will give his marriage the best shot if you are still active in his life. Although you say you have given him time, it is clear that the two of you are still actively engaged.
Second, your presence in his life has complicated issues because his relatives have already taken sides. I guess now they seem to gauge his happiness by comparing how he relates with you to how he relates with his wife. Sadly, since he has unresolved issues at home with his wife, he will appear happy with you and fail to confront the unresolved issues.
This man needs to take some uninterrupted time to determine what has gone wrong in his marriage and resolve it. The best thing you can do is stay away from him and stop communicating with him completely. As much as it might not be easy, it the necessary, and is the best thing you can do for him. Inner focus and personal determination will be essential for him. Don’t open a door for his unresolved issues to become the baggage and weight you are going to carry along.
It is known that, with time, people who are hurting can carry their pain with them and end up hurting others. This means that inner healing is essential to the health of any relationship. If both of you have children from previous relationships, managing blended marriages is not only challenging, but at times exhausting.
Many studies have shown that a large percentage of married people who get divorced still harbour good or bad feelings for their former spouses years after the separation. It is these powerful feelings towards their former partners that need to be processed freely, and sometimes with help from a counsellor, in order to limit the transference of the same to new relationships.
If they are not well handled, they can be problematic to their future connections. Some of them might look back to their previous relationships and start missing what they never treasured due to the problems that were there then. Others look back with fear, bitterness or anger, which might make them permanently anxious. For example, where a new relationship could be progressing well, problems or difficulty might be encountered, causing one spouse to remember the past and begin to use comparisons that could lead them to judge the other person.
I would advise you to move with care. This could just end up hurting you and others more.
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