I’m 36, single, and I’ve dated more men than I can count. I was engaged once, but after a year and a half we broke it off because I didn’t feel ready. The problem is, I really, really do want to fall in love and get married… but I’m afraid that I’m seriously messed up and won’t be able to maintain a relationship. It seems like right around a year and a half, the other person just starts to get on my nerves, we fight a lot and I break it off. Help! What’s wrong with me?
– Loveless Amelia in Akron, OH
Dear Loveless Amelia,
Girl, I so feel you! First of all, take a deep breath. There is nothing wrong with you and you can and will find lasting love if that’s what you truly want. Many people experience what you’re going through, and I hope I can shed some light.
Let me tell you a little story about a love addict I know. The woman loved dating. She was enamored with the process of meeting someone new and exciting: she loved being asked out (and she got asked out a lot), she loved the first kiss, she loved the spark and excitement of a new relationship.
And really, who doesn’t love that? It feels great!
But the problem she had was that she would date until it fizzled. She would bask in the heightened energy that comes in the very beginning, but the minute that energy began to cool down or the guy started to show less interest, she would get bored and break it off.
lot of people get caught in this cycle. We get addicted to the romance of things. There’s nothing wrong with wanting to be romantic, of course, because everyone wants to experience romance, but deciding that something’s not working just because it has shifted organically can be destructive.
Think about it this way: a relationship is just like life. It’s not all highlights and it’s not all lowlights. One day will be amazing, the next day might suck, and the third day might be amazing again – just like life, there’s an ebb and flow of ups and downs.
I recently wrote about how important it is to be intentional when you’re dating. In your case, Amelia, I would take a close look at the emotions that come up when you want to break up with someone. What’s really happening? Is there really something wrong, or are you just feeling bored?
Even the best relationships will be boring sometimes, but it’s ultimately your commitment to keeping the magic alive that will give it longevity. You can do it! It’s just a choice.
Have you ever gotten bored in a relationship? How did you decide whether it was time to break up or whether it was worth sticking it out?
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