There’s this couple I know who have had the most absurd ‘relationship’. Theirs began as a come we stay arrangement that got strained quite early on. He began openly cheating with another woman and sort of moved in with her. This was until he got into a serious car accident and the new catch abandoned him. His ‘wife’ saw him through this period, took him back home and nursed him back to health. As soon as he could spin his Subaru again, he left her for the same woman. Then he began ailing from complications of the car accident and once again, he came begging for her to take him back. She did and she is currently, happily nursing him back to health trying not to rock the boat lest he goes running again. We can all see where he will be laying his head at night once the throbbing in his bones goes.
If you ask me, a relationship where someone only needs you when everything has gone to the dogs is a buried relationship. It’s not a struggling relationship, it is not just a phase; it’s a dead relationship.
I do not think that women who make choices to stay in this kind of relationships are foolish. They can see what’s going on, they can see the patterns, can see ‘their man’ walking out on them long before he does but they hold on. Why? They lie to themselves.
The biggest lies are the ones we tell ourselves. A woman will see her relationship dying but tell herself that it doesn’t matter who he is with because he always comes back to her in the end. She will tell herself that it doesn’t matter that he is emotionally unavailable or even disrespectful to her because she is the goat wife (Whatever that means). She will tell herself that if she is the one he ends up with after spending the best years of both their lives running around with other women, she will have won.
This is the lie of the century. Be honest with yourself. Watch out for the red and yellow flags when you see them, act. Make demands of the men in your life. Being quiet when you should be asking questions is akin to taking what you can get instead of demanding what you deserve.
Too many women are stranded at junctions waiting for men who do not really want to commit. How about you shake things up? Ask real questions when you see the red flags? Call him out when he begins taking you for a ride? Let your actions match the things that your mind and your mouth say you want?
A man juggling between you and another woman, a man lying about important things in your relationship and a man who keeps you guessing on where everything is headed isn’t dating you right.
Don’t let someone waste your time this year.
The columnist is the author of the book Things I Will Tell My Daughter