As we grow up and grow older, we realize that one of the most difficult things to maintain and engage in are relationships. Whether this is with our friends, our parents, our colleagues or with our significant others, relationships can be messy, horrible and increasingly difficult to get out of.
It is this last fact that is one of the most difficult problems to solve in many individual’s lives. We’ve all been young and reckless in love, thinking ours was a love that could withstand the cruel and harsh realities of life.
This is short lived however, as we soon realize that not everything is meant to last and while the naivety is understandable in our youth, why is it that even as adults we fail to escape the sometimes toxic nature of our relationships with others?
Is it because human beings are emotional creatures no matter how hard we try to choose logic and reason? Or is it because we fail to learn from our past mistakes? It is very hard to let go of some habits once they’ve become an essential part of our consciousness and that might also apply to relationships.
It’s easy to get stuck in a comfortable rut even if it causes us more harm than good than to have to come to terms with the fear of being alone. Let’s take a look at some of the main reasons why we find it so hard to let go of someone we love;
We’re more attached to the idea of the relationship or the person than the actual person itself. This may stem from past trauma that forces us to perceive a relationship as our safety net for when times inevitably get rough. Instead of internal reflection and self growth we learn to depend on another individual.
This idolization of being in a relationship also means that we tend to view our self worth as something only if it is attached to society’s conventions of a functional relationship. Societal pressure on individuals to forever be in a committed relationship can sometimes be it’s own undoing as it leads to mismatched relationships where couples are just not right for each other.
This leads to our next reason which is the idea that marriage is a sacred institution even if it is toxic and we are destined to play out the part regardless of whether there is any value in the empty shell of a marriage or relationship.
Another reason is usually the fact that we feel that in terms of relationships or partners, we’ve “peaked” and if we let go of this one, we may never find a better one ever. This is also tied to a person’s innate insecurities and can lead to the creation and tolerance of very toxic behaviours.
There are also those among us who want to believe in the notion of true and undying love so much that they become blind to anything but their own romantic fantasies. This is perhaps the most dangerous reason we are unable to let a loved one go and may lead to us tolerating abuse, degradation and much worse all to retain the romantic fantasy in our minds.
The most important lesson one should learn by engaging in relationships is that you define your own limits of what should and shouldn’t be tolerated or compromised. No relationship is perfect and possible never can be but as we grow so should our relationship with ourselves and our partner.