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Is it better to "give up" or "be done" with a relationship?


There is a difference between “giving up” and “being done” with something.

“Giving up” is surrender, admitting defeat and not having the ambition to continue pursuing a goal. Giving up, or quitting, is often associated with cowardice and shame, implying the "quitter" feels powerless to change the outcome.

“Being done” with something is more victorious. It means an effort was put forth but over time it became apparent that pursuing the goal was toxic and volatile and had to be abandoned.

Both choices are born from a point of crisis, one where you have to decide to either GIVE UP your worth, your self-image and your dignity, or to be DONE with what was slowly and silently killing you.

There are 2 types of "quitters"...1. the kind that breed a victim mentality when their relationships suffer. (whether it be dating, marriage, family, friendship or career) This allows the quitter to garner sympathy in future or current peripheral relationships. (example: in a bitter divorce or family squabble, one side typically portrays the other as intolerable and unfair in an effort to manipulate support, they claim "victim" while establishing a "villain")...

OR 2. the kind that quietly concede. They forfeit their own well being to remain in a relationship, become complacent and inadvertently condone the unacceptable behavior of the other person. Type 2's delude themselves into believing they are"keeping the peace" by not holding someone accountable, but in reality are facilitating the misery, even fertilizing and spreading it to others outside of that relationship.

It takes courage to walk away and be DONE with something you once credited with your happiness or felt was necessary. Initially it makes sense to remain, to cling to a diminished perception of happiness. You tell yourself "It's not perfect, but it's mine" and believe that a fraction of it is better than none at all. Walking away is a very painful process, not recommended for the faint of heart or weary and only survived by the warriors. In order to successfully walk away, a relationship needs to be severed and ownership needs to be taken. (Example: I'm terminating this relationship but do NOT claim to be a victim. I knew certain behaviors were unhealthy or unacceptable but I take responsibility for allowing them. I didn't establish boundaries for what would be toxic and I own the subsequent demise)

The result and reward: Freedom and wisdom. Freedom from constantly trying to reconcile and defend your relationship both outwardly to others AND inside the confines of your own head, and wisdom for future discernment. You will now be equipped to recognize a potentially self-depleting union before it impacts and consumes you.

I now have an understanding of PEACE and will preserve and protect it at all costs. If I feel I am reacting negatively to a person or situation I will either eliminate or limit my exposure to them. Unfortunately there are times when guarding my peace causes collateral damage...if I limit or eliminate my exposure to a specific relationship, other people associated with that person become"off limits" to me. This is particularly difficult and heartbreaking when family is involved but I am perpetually hopeful that the healthy relationships will be restored. I will not compromise my peace nor would I want anyone else to compromise theirs. I'm humble enough to admit I'm not everyone's "cup of tea" and that some may deem me a threat to their own peace. Choosing to remove someone from your life doesn't mean you hate them, it means you respect yourself.

That's been MY experience, anyway. I may regret the circumstances and choices that lead to me learning this lesson but I can never regret the value of the lesson. So many of my family members and friends have endured this same "education"...some as recently as I have, some survived it long ago, and some have yet to reckon with it...either way, we're all in good company.


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