If you’ve ever been through a breakup or divorce, you may be a little gun-shy about your next serious relationship. You’re suddenly second guessing yourself and every decision that you make. It can be exhausting and a little (lot) frightening to consider starting over with someone new.
What if the same things happen? What if the problems your last relationship had were all your fault and you bring them to the new relationship? What can you do to start your new relationship off on the right foot? Are there any strategies that you can use to help your new, fledgling relationship find its way towards lasting romance?
If you want to help your relationship start (and stay) strong, here are some Dos and Don’ts to get you going.
Make new friends (but keep the old). The Girl Scouts have it right? you need to keep your girls around. Just because you have a new relationship in your life, you don’t have to get rid of your old friendships. Friends add color, stability and flavor to your life. Maintain your relationships with your friends? even after you and your guy are an established couple.
Encourage your new guy to keep his friendships as well. Plan some activities that you can do with each other’s friends and begin to make friends that are new to you both as well. Having friendships outside the relationship is a healthy way to make sure you aren’t solely relying on your partner for your emotional needs.
Stay true to yourself. Changing who you are and the things that make you unique just to please your partner is one of the worst things you can do. Not only will it lead to resentment (yours) and anger (his), you’re changing the person that your man fell in love with. He loved you for who you were – you shouldn’t have to change to keep that love.
Lying to your partner is a surefire way to erode the trust in your relationship. Even lying by omission is harmful and should be avoided. Sometimes you have to say things that you know will hurt the other person, so you want to lie to spare them the pain. Don’t. Just use the ‘rip the bandaid’ off mentality and tell them the whole, ugly truth. The pain may be sharp, but it will fade. The pain of lying has long term consequences.
Talking about problems with your relationship with someone of the opposite sex is another big no-no. When you use another man’s shoulder to cry on, sometimes you start to develop an attraction for those big, strong shoulders that so easily carry the weight of your burdens. Stay away from this situation by keeping your mouth closed? and only cry on your girlfriend’s shoulders.
Using another person to make your partner jealous is not only juvenile, it’s dangerous. Manipulating your partner’s emotions may get you the attention you want, but the result may be a breakup.
There is no guarantee about relationships. You can only do your part to be the best partner possible and choose someone who feels the same way. Your next relationship can be wonderful!