I have mentioned that I am a Dr. Phil fan. A huge fan. I love his outspoken style of tell-it-like-it-is, take no prisoners, make no excuses advice. And I think he is spot on with that advice. I am more than a little like that. If I think it and don’t say it, it’s because I have used a great deal of restraint and that doesn’t happen very often. I also have a secret desire to be BFFs with his wife, Robin! 🙂
That being said, I particularly agree with his advice on dating and marriage and as an educator in a high school setting, I see so many teenagers who are so “in love” that they cannot see the forest for the trees. I am writing this post for them. Or for anyone in a relationship, really. I hope you don’t mind the soapbox…
If you argue more than you laugh, the relationship isn’t worth it.
Every day at work I walk down the halls and there are teenagers who are so “in love” hanging around every corner. But there is one couple that I see every day, a couple of times a day, and they are always in some kind of argument. I cannot count the number of times I have heard her saying “I’m sorry.” Or “I know, but…” Or “I didn’t mean it.” He always looks like he is having the worst day of his life.
Every time I see them, I want to stop and ask them why in the world are they together? Good grief! If I spent all my time with hubby apologizing or explaining my actions, I would be miserable. And so would he!
No, hubby and I probably don’t laugh 50% of the time we are together, but we don’t fight 50% of the time, either. We have a lot of conversations that aren’t funny, they are just conversations. We also have fun and laugh a good bit. We just have conversations. About life. About work. About the kids. About things on TV, the news, the weather, our lives…But we don’t have conversations that require apologies all the time.
What I am saying is that if your relationship is made up of apologies and excuses, it isn’t worth having.
If he/she cheats on you, say goodbye. And leave.
If you are dating someone and they cheat, why would you stay with that person? You have nothing holding you in a relationship.
Why would someone cheat? The Truth About Deception website claims that there are 2 basic reasons: 1st is being unhappy in a relationship and 2nd is that being faithful is difficult for some people.
Looking at these two issues, my responses are this: If you are unhappy with a dating relationship, get out of that relationship. If you cheat you are not only unhappy, but you are lowering yourself to being untrustworthy.
As for the second issue, my response is: That is malarkey! Being faithful is not that difficult. Just don’t do it. Don’t put yourself into situations where it is more likely that you will cheat. If cheating is looking like an option, make that decision not to do it. Take yourself out of the situation that is endangering your relationship.
Sex doesn’t mean he/she loves you. Nor does it mean you love him/her.
Sex is an act of love. But it does not mean that you love someone. Having sex does not make someone love you. It does not make you love someone, either. Having sex does not mean you are officially an adult, either. Trust me, I’ve met a lot of people who have sex that I would not consider adults! Just sayin’.
It’s just a fact. Sex is an act of love between two people, but it should never be forced or required. The statement “If you love me you’ll have sex with me” should ALWAYS be followed by “If you love me, you won’t pressure me.” I am not saying sex is a bad thing. I am saying that holding sex over someone’s head to pressure them into something is a terrible thing.
Part of what makes you an adult is making good decisions based on a level of maturity that allows you to continue to make good decisions. Having sex to hang on to a boyfriend/girlfriend is the opposite of that.
If he/she keeps you from your friends, he/she isn’t worth keeping.
Being in a relationship takes time and commitment. I get that. But it doesn’t take 100% of your free time. I am amazed at the teenage couples at schools where I have worked that cannot be out of one another’s sight. They are holding hands, touching, or hanging all over each other all of the time. That’s just not for me. But for some, that is the relationship they like. I am good with that.
But then there is the more sinister side to that type of relationship, where one person basically requires the other to spend all his or her free time as a couple, not allowing the other to call, text, or talk to anyone else. Sometimes even family.
If this is the case, you should start to worry about abuse. I am not saying that person will abuse you, I am just saying that, in my opinion, and from what I have seen, these relationships usually involve abuse. Sometimes physical, but almost always emotional. I mean, let’s face it, not having any relationships outside your romantic one is already emotional abuse.
If your significant other doesn’t have other friends and interests beyond you, what is going to happen when you do something that lets them down? And you will because no one can be everything to someone else all the time. So if you let them down, how will they handle it? They are already controlling you emotionally, so how big of a leap would it be for the control to get physical?
Which leads me to the last point:
If he/she puts his hand on you in anger leave. Right then. And NEVER go back.
One of my favorite Dr. Phil/Robin quotes is “No man has the right to put his hands on a woman in anger. EVER.” This goes for women, too.
If there is physical abuse in a dating relationship, it will only get worse in a marital relationship. Because once you are married to an abuser, he/she gets this insane notion that you “belong” to them and they own you and can do whatever they like to you.
This is non-negotiable. Period.
So now that I have jumped squarely up on this soapbox, I truly hope that this helps someone out there. A good relationship takes a lot of time, a lot of effort on both people, respect, friendship and love. I hope you find that. I hope this article helps….
Because at the end of the day, what most of us want is someone to share our life with who has the same feelings toward us that we have toward them. That is what truly matters.