A fear of being single can cause you to ignore red flags, “look the other way,” and deny your true feelings – all of which are not conducive to a healthy, fulfilling relationship.
Too many relationships include three entities: You, your partner, and denial.
Relationships can be perceived as beacons of security, comfort, and companionship. Most people like these things, and that is why we constantly run on the hamster wheels that are Dating and Relationships to find them. Once settled into a relationship, people fear losing the safety and partnership associated with their significant other. We can be so scared of losing a relationship we overlook grievances, ignore red flags, and sweep emotional shortcomings under the rug.
Too many people embrace denial to maintain their relationship. Do you turn your cheek whenever your partner does something that angers you? Do you pretend everything is “ok” when you’re holding resentments against your partner? Are you guilty of ignoring the problem, or believing things will magically change?
We can argue relationships are about compromise. We can argue that it’s a virtue to look for the best in people. We can argue about “hoping for the better” and “things can change.” But holding on to hope, and convincing yourself people can change, is what makes denial work so well – and keeps people from realizing they are actually in denial.
How do you know if you’re in denial? How do you stop being oblivious and embrace the reality of your situation?
Here are four signs you are in relationship denial:
#1 You Don’t Feel Like You Can Be Yourself With Your Partner.
You are either trying to change your true self, hide your true self, or be “the perfect person.” If you feel you have to change who you are to be with your partner, this is a huge red flag saying you are not with the right person. Acknowledge this warning sign, as you are denying yourself the chance to be loved for who you really are. Not only does denying your true self breed insecurity, it also affects trust and intimacy. Being loved for who you are, and having a partner who knows you is the foundation for healthy emotional, mental, and physical intimacy.
#2 You’re Waiting For Your Partner To Change.
Are you waiting, hoping, and relying on your partner to undergo a personality change, or for the circumstances of your relationship to change, in order for you to feel fulfilled? When you think about your relationship, and your partner, do you use the phrase, “If only…” to describe what you really need and want? Just as you should not change yourself to make a relationship work, you should not count on your partner to change either. You deserve to be loved for who you are, just as they do. This type of denial can blur the boundaries in your relationship. You let your partner get away with things and then tell yourself “it won’t always be this way.” You’re hoping for a different future for your relationship, that more than likely will never be realized.
#3 You Don’t Want Your Partner To Meet Your Friends.
Do you avoid introducing your partner to friends and family because you already know what they’re going to say? If you can foresee your friends’ doubts, uncertainties, and objections, it’s because you have the same doubts but are unable to admit them to yourself. You deserve to have a partner you are proud of, and are proud for them to meet your friends and family. If you are hesitant to introduce your partner to people who are important to you, you are failing to acknowledge your own doubts about the relationship.
#4 You Would Rather Be In A Relationship Than Be Alone.
Do you prefer to be in an unhealthy, failing relationship, than to be alone? If you have a history of this, it is important you examine your current relationship. A fear of being single can cause you to ignore red flags, “look the other way,” and deny your true feelings – all of which are not conducive to a healthy, fulfilling relationship.
How do you find your way out of denial and into the relationship you deserve?
Be honest with yourself. Be honest with your emotions and feelings, and identify what you need from a relationship. Then, communicate this with your partner. If they are not supportive and encouraging of your needs, it’s time to evaluate your circumstances and seek the relationship everyone has the right to experience.