We’re on a mission to provide an affordable channel to boost your mental health. So, each week, we’re checking in with our community to see how they’re working on their mental health and their goal towards happiness. We invited to Renee Slansky, Dating & Relationship Coach to share us some tips to deal with a one sided relationship.
Q: “I was in a relationship with someone for 5 years. It was a constant struggle and extremely toxic. After a year of being single and multiple failed talking stages, I met a man and have been talking to him for 6 months. I’m incredibly invested and am constantly going above and beyond, breaking my back to be his backbone and support. I am there for him as and when he needs, I drop everything to be able to talk to him for even 5 minutes.
My issue is, in these 6 months, we have only met 4 or maybe 5 times, he never calls me and never initiates the next meeting/date. He gives me mere scraps of his time and usually replies only once in a day and most recently has been taking multiple days to text me back. I’ve raised my concerns with him multiple times and he apologised, agreed that it is not fair on me as I am only human and have feelings too and says he will change. He has said that he does have feelings and he isn’t cold, he is really interested in me and misses me too…however whenever I try to talk to or meet him, I’m given excuses that he has exams or he is spending time with family, for example.
But I’m so tired of giving my all and being the good, understanding person, when it’s my feelings in the end that I am hurting and compromising on. I really do have intense feelings for him and don’t know how to move forward. I feel like I’ve given men my word and it is pure, it is genuine and sincere…but I don’t feel appreciated. It’s now 1/2 years that I have felt this way with all the men that have walked into my life. My heart is aching and I just want to be given some respect, appreciation and effort. Any guidance would be much appreciated. Thank you.”
A: “This is a very clear case of compliance boundaries issues – where by we assume that the more we give, the more it will make someone want us and love us. Giving him your all not only becomes draining, but it also doesn’t give him the opportunity to give back.
How can a man chase you if you are chasing him?
How can he step up and do more if you haven’t left him the gap to do that?
If you are constantly initiating and always there for him even when he doesn’t prioritise you, what you are doing is sending him the signal that what he is doing is okay – you are rewarding his negative behaviour.
By the sounds of it, what needs to happen is learning to love yourself more fully to know when to give and how much to give and being comfortable with setting boundaries. Giving more to make up for his lack will never work. You can’t keep giving from an empty cup. There is only ever two reason why we suffer in love – we are doing the wrong thing or dating the wrong man. In this case it could be both, however it does sound like more of a self-sabotage. It’s time to start giving YOU your all first and then giving back to the right man from a place of security and abundance and boundaries.
Breaking self-sabotaging patterns isn’t something we magically fix overnight. We have to build new convictions and do what is right even if we don’t feel the change straight away.
I would recommend having some sort of accountability checker when it comes to how much you give. Example, have 10 marbles and every time you do something for someone put one marble in a jar, if someone gives back to you, put the marble back in the first jar. This will be a visual representation of how much you give and how much other are giving back to you. If your own jar is empty because you have given too many marbles away into the other jar – guess what?! It’s time to stop giving and allow yourself to receive!” – Renee Slansky, Dating & Relationship Coach