Make or Break: Relationship Changes

This month on my blogs and in my newsletters I’ve been talking about change.  Today I’m approaching the ever sensitive issue of (romantic) relationship changes. I’ve got three points to consider with you today, and I’d love to hear your thoughts on changes in the relationships you’ve had at the end.

There will be changes.

This is perhaps the most sensitive part of all.  Some people go into relationships expecting that they can change the person, or that the other person will never change.  The reality is that some things won’t change and other things will change!  Your partner’s choice in music may not change, but their treatment of you may improve in leaps and bounds over the years. Your allergies may never change, but they may develop them.  Accept when you go into the relationship that there will be changes!  Some will be scary, but if you’re open to communicating with each other about the changes you’re going through, it will be much easier to accept the changes as normal.

Making the best of changes.

You’ve got two choices, the choice to be completely ruined by the changes you, your partner and your relationship, goes through, or make the best of them.  Learn how to work together through the changes, to support each other with the changes and above all, to communicate when things need to be changed!  While I do encourage married couples to always try to work through their challenges and changes, taking a break if necessary, the bottom line is sometimes a real separation is the best change that can be made.  If this is the case for you, don’t be bitter, be better!  Make extra effort to communicate with your partner, make sure that you’re financially prepared and you are emotionally prepared for the upheaval that will happen.  Take this experience as an opportunity to be a new and better you, learning and growing from your experience with your partner.

Choosing in favor of you.

When relationships go through changes often we make sacrifices as a result of those changes.  If you’re making sacrifices for your partner all the time, stop.  You’ve got to choose in favor of you at least 50% of the time.  If you don’t, not only will your relationship with your partner suffer, so will your kids.  You can’t care for your kids if you’re not caring for yourself.  Make sure that you and your partner have communicated how long this time of change and sacrifice will last, and make sure that the person doing the sacrificing has support from outside friends and relatives or at least the kids.  In situations where you’re considering divorce, don’t just choose in favor of the kids, because if you don’t consider yourself, you aren’t considering your ability to care for your kids.

What are your thoughts and tips for dealing with and working through the changes in your relationships?  What great choices have you made and which would you do differently?  Share your thoughts below.

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