How To Know When It’s Over
My freshman year of college I met someone who I thought was nothing more than eye candy. He was handsome, carefree and mysterious enough to keep my attention. Four years later, I found myself in a very serious relationship with a guy who was ready to uproot his life and move to New York for me. The problem? I didn’t want him to. I felt trapped in in the “serious business” of the relationship. I didn’t want the responsibility of changing someone’s life. I didn’t want to know what the next steps would be if he did move to New York. The most over-used phrase in a break up is “it’s not you, it’s me.” It’s true. It wasn’t him who didn’t want to be with me, it was me who didn’t want to be with him.
The worst part is that I strung the relationship out, which I think most of us are guilty of doing. I did it for two reasons. One, I was two afraid to let go of my comfort net. When you’re in a routine for four years, it’s scary to all of a sudden have all this time on your hands. Two, I didn’t know what to say or how to say it. “I’m not in love with you,” doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue , especially when you care about someone.
But you have to say those words if it’s over. Knowing when a relationship is over is difficult, so trust your instincts. I didn’t, and in the end things were more painful than they had to be. My first and most obvious piece of advice is if you’ve cheated on your boyfriend and you find yourself wanting to do it again, you’re probably not in it anymore. In my humble opinion, sex is an extremely important part of a relationship. It’s the most intimate expression between two people, and if you find yourself not wanting to be that bare with your boyfriend, it’s time to cut the cord.
If you find yourself thinking about the future and he’s not part of it, then maybe you need to take a step back. When graduation is looming, there are a lot of decisions to be made, and if you don’t want him to be part of them that signifies that maybe it’s time for you to be alone and embark on the next chapter of your life by yourself.
Lastly, if you’ve become nothing more than a reflection of each other, you won’t grow together or individually. I went through this with my ex, and when I finally realized who I was, it became very apparent that who I was with him was not who I wanted to be. He was in love with a version of me that was nothing more than a reflection of him. Twisted isn’t it? The relationships that work the best are the ones where each person is independent, but can come together and share their lives. I was lucky enough to find someone who can appreciate our time together, but also has a life of his own. We’ve decided to move in together and I’m counting down the days!
If you’re going through something like this now and you find yourself wanting to fight and make it work, then by all means do it. I think we don’t fight hard enough sometimes, but you just need to make sure you’re fighting for something you want. Don’t stay with someone that you no longer are in love with because, in the words of John Mayer, “You’re just slow dancing in a burning room.”
[lead image via Fluffy2008/shutterstock.com]