Archive for Relationship Advice

Thoughts About On and Off Relationships

Relationships are like roads.  A relationship can be generally smooth but it isn’t free of the occasional bumps on the road.  

Once in a while, you and your partner will experience problems that will rock your commitment to one another.  If your commitment to stay together is strong, then you can overcome the crisis together. 

But not all relationships are as lucky.  Some go through repetitive cycles of breaking up and making up.  If you find yourself in an on and off relationship, peace of mind escapes you as a consequence of instability. 

You will always have the feeling that the next break-up could happen any time.  Instead of just going through the motions of a love-hate pattern, you may want to look into what’s really preventing you from staying together or from leaving one another altogether.                    

Fear of Commitment :  One or both of you may be frightened by the thought of a long term relationship.  While you both enjoy each other’s company, the one who is afraid of settling down worries about missing out on some things.  Sometimes, you may fear commitment if you have experienced getting hurt by someone in a previous relationship.  Serious relationships in the past that have gone sour can leave one feeling skeptical about the future of a current relationship. 

If you are constantly plagued by questions of what if, then you need to talk things over with one another. Only a strong commitment to work things out can keep you from breaking up at the slightest doubt or provocation.  Because a fear of commitment is personal to you, you will have to overcome it someday or brace yourself for an emotional rollercoaster ride for the rest of your life.    

Hard Habit to Break:   On the other hand, there are those that leave a relationship for the right reasons but somehow find their ways back to one another, not due to a genuine love for one another, but because of the fear of stepping out of a comfort zone that the old relationship has created. 

In long relationships, certain routines have usually been established and when you break away from it, you find yourself missing those familiar routines rather than the person you were with.  If this is your only reason for getting back every time, you may never have a stable relationship at all, as the same conflict that brought you apart before may arise occasionally to split you up again.  You can do one of two things:  settle for an unstable relationship or break the destructive pattern you have gotten used to.      

While it is true that a relationship can become stronger from the experience of hurdling serious obstacles together, the constant cycle of breaking up and making up may an indication of more serious issues that need to be addressed. 

Take the time to reflect on those issues and determine for yourself if you can still work it out or if it really is high time to find someone you can build a stable relationship with. 

Whatever it is you decide to do, aim for stability.  

Does Love Deserve A Second Chance? What to do when he comes back for you

Boyfriends may come and go, but once you have loved someone, he will always have a special place in your heart. 

 Sometimes, it takes a little separation for your ex to realize that you actually mean a lot to him.  He may start to send you signs of wanting to reconcile with you.  He may embark on a mission to restore your old relationship or to start all over again with you.  You consider the idea of getting back. 

 It is easy to fall in love again with someone who shared a special history with you.  The break from the relationship may have managed to erase some of the negative feelings between you and your ex.  And you wonder if both of you deserve another shot at a relationship.  

It’s nice to know that he still thinks of you and is wooing you all over again. Back when you first started your relationship, you used your heart in making that decision because you didn’t know him then as well as you know him now.  The circumstances now are different.  Take time out to reflect on the relationship that died.  Consider the following first:

  • There is a reason why you are no longer with him today.  If the cause of your break-up was serious enough to separate you from him, then it is possible that reconciliation may be short-lived or temporary. 
  • True reconciliation is possible only when both of you decide to change.  You can’t expect your relationship to run more smoothly than before if you both still make the same mistakes. 
  • A strong commitment is always essential in a relationship.  Without a firm resolution to stay and work things out, your relationship with him will break at the slightest provocation because you do not have the desire to stay. 
  • Some people can get past an infidelity.   It is still possible for the two of you to have a loving relationship after one or both of you was caught cheating on the other.  To move beyond a partner’s betrayal, one has to work hard at regaining that trust while the other should be open to trusting the erring partner again. 
  • Haste makes waste.  There’s no need to rush into a second relationship with him if you still need more time to convince yourself about its merits.  You’ve made some mistakes before; take care to avoid them this time.  There’s no telling what a second break-up can do to your lives. 

 Some relationships are just so broken that reconciliation is out of the question.  Others are lucky to be able to use their past as a learning experience for them to become stronger as a couple. If you truly believe that he deserves a second chance, then go for it. 

As the old adage goes,

 “If you love someone set him free. If he comes back to you, then it was meant to be.”

Are You A Trophy Girlfriend?

You see this often: an average-looking man with an arm around a stunningly beautiful woman.  Flip through the society pages of a newspaper and you will also see wealthy and accomplished men photographed beside their eye-catching dates.  Politicians are guilty of this.  Most men seeking elective office are said to purposely marry the most beautiful faces that their money can buy in an effort to look picture-perfect to their constituents.  An additional bonus is that a beautiful woman can increase a man’s chances of improving his gene pool as she may bear him beautiful children someday.   

For a woman who is referred to as a trophy wife or girlfriend, the label can be degrading as it implies that she is valued for nothing more than her physical assets.  Women yearn to be loved completely, and this includes not just what is seen on the outside but also what she has between her ears and in her heart.  While you are flattered by compliments about your beauty, you don’t want to be treated simply like a doll that doesn’t speak her mind, and is locked up in a glass case for all to see. It’s time to re-assess old views about the trophy date and consider the following ideas:  ·         

Men are visual creatures.   They are attracted to beautiful things: sports cars, grand homes, sleek gadgets and beautiful women.  While your boyfriend’s interest in you may have started off with a strong physical attraction, if after getting to know you, your boyfriend finds that your personality is dull and shallow, he may not ask you out a second or a third time. A woman must have something else about her in order to hold a man’s attention.  If he’s still with you, then he must have seen something more than just your beautiful face.          

Take pride in your beauty.  Without being narcissistic, be comforted by the fact that your boyfriend is proud of you.  Would you rather be hidden from everyone else?  In a sea of average looking people, it is your fortune to be born with the face of an angel.   

Break free from the stereotype of a beautiful woman.  You don’t always have to be bothered by the opinion of others; you can’t control their thoughts.  What you can do is to shine in a field that you are good at.  Continue to improve yourself by learning new skills and perfecting your craft.  Be nice to people from all walks of life.  A beautiful face and a good heart is a rare combination.  In time, you will be admired for being beautiful inside and out.      

Being beautiful is a blessing.  Be thankful for it.  Your man certainly appreciates it.  You would be right to worry if other than parade you around in front of his friends, your man does nothing to show that he respects you or appreciates you.  In such an instance, your beauty should give you the strength to break free from a meaningless relationship. With your looks, you should have no problem finding better men to be with.

After all, a beautiful woman is worth fighting for.   

Should I be her rebound relationship?

The fastest way to bounce back from a break-up is to find someone new.  To someone who is nursing a broken heart, a new love interest can be a source of inspiration and a distraction.  It is human nature to want to love and to be loved in return. 

When a woman’s ex leaves a void in her heart and in her arms, she may fall in love with the next male that seems to pay her some attention.  Before you know it, a rebound relationship already exists between the two.  

There’s reason to be wary about a rebound relationship. Its defects usually surface a little later, when the passion of a whirlwind romance fades or when the broken-hearted woman meets someone more compatible to be with.  So, if you know that the woman you have a crush on is finally free, be the first to comfort her, but take care not to be her rebound boyfriend.  Here’s how:

  • Be her shrink.  Listen to her feelings. Allow her to whine about her previous relationship even when you are not interested in those things.  Wipe her tears and make her smile.  The more you allow her to process all the pain coming from her broken heart, the sooner will she recover and be ready to get into a new relationship.  Surely, you will get some credit for being there when she badly needed a shoulder to cry on. 
  • Mark your territory.  While you should avoid romantic gestures and similar advances while she is getting over her ex, you should establish your presence at an early stage to keep other male prospects from entering the picture.  This you can do by offering to be her constant companion in public places. 
  • Keep her girl friends close by.  Let her female friends maintain their roles as her best friends.  You, on the other hand, should avoid becoming her best friend, but continue being her special friend.  The last thing you’d want to hear from her is that what you both share is a platonic relationship. A platonic relationship is somewhere between a simple friendship and a romantic relationship.  Unless you get lucky, you won’t be able to get her to elevate you from platonic to romantic. So, don’t be her best friend.
  • Let her know you think she is special.  This is tricky for being a grey area.  While you don’t want to woo her immediately, you have to send subtle hints her way every now and then.  Wait for the right opportunity to put in a good word about her like when she complains that her ex was the one who dumped her.  Say something that could touch her heart like “I would never let you go if I were your boyfriend.” An indirect hint is when you avoid showing interest in other girls.  If she inquires about the existence of a girlfriend, say something like, “I am happy where I am right now.” 

Seizing the opportunity to be her boyfriend in a rebound relationship is fine if all you want is a short-lived affair.  But with perseverance and proper timing, you avoid being her rebound boyfriend while increasing your chances of having a relationship that lasts.

First Date Tips

Men go out on a date for various reasons.  Most are interested in pursuing a long term relationship with a woman they like.  Some may just be in need of a female companion for an occasion.  Others simply wish to explore the possibility of physical intimacy without the benefit of a relationship.   Whether your intentions are for a lasting commitment or a brief encounter with a woman, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain by giving your date a good time.  Here are a few tips to get you started:

  • Prepare for it.  Even the most experienced daters go through some form of preparation for a girl they are taking out for the first time.  Spend some time finding out whatever you can about your date.  Know her likes and dislikes.  Seek an understanding of what she does for a living.  The preliminary information will help you pick a place to eat or hang out with her. The right setting will put her in a good mood.  Attend to your personal hygiene and figure what you will be wearing ahead of time.
  • Make her feel comfortable during your date.  If you get her to warm up to you, you increase your chances of having a second or succeeding date with her. 
  • Don’t expect intimacy on the first date.  Most women prefer to get to know their dates before getting into bed with any of them.  Be realistic in your expectations to avoid getting disappointed when the night is over.
  • Avoid being a bad first date for any woman.  This rule applies whether you want to pursue a relationship with her or if you just want to hang out or have a fling with her.  If the first date is a disappointment, a woman you like may not want to see you again.  If you don’t care how a casual date will turn out, you should still give your date a good time.  You’ll never know who your casual date may be friends or connected with.  If word gets around about how you are a sloppy date material, you decrease your chances of seizing more dates with women you really like. 

 

First impressions are made during the first dates.  Try not to make distinctions between a serious date and a casual date.  Every woman who agrees to go out with you expects a degree of respect and attention from you to make her time with you worthwhile.  Make every date matter, because you’ll never know how a woman really is until you go out with her.

How to Mend a Broken Heart

There’s nothing more toxic than staying on in a relationship gone sour.  When it’s over, you lose sleep, your skin gets ugly, your under-eye circles grow dark and worse, you lose your self-esteem.  By now you may have asked yourself a hundred questions why and how did you end up losing each other when everything seemed to be going great.  Fact is: people change, feelings change, and moping in your room will not bring things back to the way it was before.  Finding fault will not help either.  To unwind a relationship, it certainly had to be someone’s fault- his, yours, or a combination of both.  While it’s healthy and normal to grieve over the loss of a relationship, you have to pick yourself up after.  Don’t turn back. Move on.  Here’s what will help to mend a broken heart:

  1. Discard, throw, hide or put away all pictures of your ex.  Remember: out of sight, out of mind.
  2. Get rid of all items that he/she gave you during the relationship.  Donate, throw or sell them.  If you have accumulated enough, organize or join a yard sale and convert the remnants of your relationship into CASH.
  3. Avoid mushy and sad love songs for the next two or three weeks.  The same advice goes for romantic movies. Laughter is still the best medicine; watch comedy films.  If you like action movies, by all means, watch them, too.  The idea is to distract yourself and to lift your spirits.
  4. Read good books.  In your state of temporary and mild depression, self-help or inspirational books can change your outlook.  Titles such as “Who Moved My Cheese” and “The Five People You Meet in Heaven” are good reads.
  5. Get a makeover. Chances are, when you were so engrossed with your problems or with your ex, you sacrificed yourself and gradually turned from beauty to the beast. Maybe that’s the reason why the relationship turned ugly– no pun intended. You don’t have to wear your broken heart on your sleeve. Work out. Get a new hairstyle. Try a new hair color. Get a facial, manicure and pedicure.  Shave, if you’re a man.  Try out new fashion styles. Improving yourself not only makes you feel better, but it also increases your chances of finding someone new and probably better than your ex.
  6. Work, work and work. If you can’t have the best relationship right now, then be the best employee, businessman, lawyer, doctor or student that you can be. Watch yourself transform into a better person when you focus on the more important things in life, like yourself. The full attention you give your work or studies will help you take your mind off that lousy break-up. And everyone will admire you for your renewed performance.
  7. Hang out with good friends. After you’ve dried your tears, please, please, please, put on your best outfit and get out of your bat cave. Go sip a frappuccino in one of the best spots in the mall– the coffee shop. Sit outdoors so you can watch the beautiful people go by.   The sugar and caffeine in your drink will give you a temporary rush. Grab a chocolate bar.  They say chocolate contains chemicals to brighten your mood.
  8. Cut clean. Change your mobile phone number. Delete his/her number from your address book. Whatever it is you do, don’t even try to talk to him/her again. No excuses here. Don’t say it’s for closure. If you broke up badly, leave it that way. Sometimes, focusing on the real reasons for your break-up grounds you. When you feel like saying something hurtful to your ex, just write it on a piece of paper and throw it away. Don’t text! If you do, you’ll be in worse shape than the day after your break-up if you try to make contact. And please, ex-lovers can’t TRULY be good friends, unless you still dream of love the second time around. In which case, stop reading this– you are not trying to get over a broken heart.
  9. Finally, if after following tips 1 to 8 you still find yourself sinking into serious depression, go see a shrink. Get professional help. Just because you need to see a psychiatrist or a counselor doesn’t mean that you are crazy. In fact, your desire to seek help means that you are intelligent enough to recognize your limitations. Unfortunately this means spending more money because counseling and possible medication can be expensive.  So, if I were you, I’d work on numbers 1 to 8 first and see what happens.

 

No matter how difficult letting go may seem, don’t do drugs or turn into a shameless alcoholic just because you are feeling miserable. Remember, there are other fishes in the sea.

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When is It Time to Move On?

It is normal for a couple to experience challenges in their relationship after the initial sparks of attraction have worn off.  After a time, a person’s true colors will either be shown to you or your partner’s qualities which were, once upon a time, endearing to you may now be annoying you. 

At the start of a relationship, it is typical to put your best foot forward.  Most likely, you highlighted your best assets while you suppressed your less than perfect side.  The same can be said for your partner.  While deception may not be the intention, winning the affection of your partner may have called for some makeover on your part.  The problem with many a transformation is in the maintenance of appearances.  As you spend more time together, you relax and shed some of your inhibitions in front of your partner.  While this may be part of intimacy, it can also be the proverbial ‘familiarity’ that ‘breeds contempt.’   Faced with the glaring imperfections of your partner, you ask yourself if it’s time to move on.

In dealing with personal differences, you have to draw the line between what is acceptable and non-negotiable.  What is acceptable is relative, and only you can tell yourself whether you can live with it or not.  Non-negotiable issues are deal breakers and need not be explored further. 

Acceptable matters usually involve things that can be improved by your partner.  This requires open communication so that your partner knows exactly what is bothering you.  Oftentimes, your partner will propose to make changes.  It would also help if you could suggest ways to make things better between the two of you.  But change requires lots of concrete action and time for it to take place.  A mere promise to change without any further action can be a deal breaker.  On the other hand, a marked improvement that is continuous can result in a compromise for the sake of the relationship.

Other factors to consider when faced with the question of moving on include: your partner’s attitude towards your dislike for specific traits, the willingness to compromise or make changes, and a repetitious cycle of improvement and reversion of old habits. A negative reaction or development in these areas may constitute a serious reason to move on.

Problems in a relationship can test the strength of your commitment to one another.  If you are both committed to the idea of keeping the relationship, then nothing can stop both of you from working things out by change, compromise or acceptance.  On the other hand, if none of you can accept things as they are, or if none of you can make the changes the other expects, then it is time to move on.

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