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Does your current relationship make you shrink or grow?

You should never have to shrink yourself to fit into someone else's life (or lifestyle).

Be who you are.

Growth

A partnership which helps you grow, is a partnership where you are supported and helped along. Where there is little to no restriction or need to change who you are in order to be with your partner.

A partner who can accept you for who you are, and whom supports you generously, without compromising on their needs, is a partner whom you can GROW with.

Shrinking yourself

When we shrink ourselves, we pull inwards our self expression and our personal needs to fit in, or benefit our partners.

Your partner doesn't like women wearing jeans; so you stop wearing jeans.

Your partner doesn't like men with facial hair; so you shave twice a day.

Consistent 'shrinking' of who you are seriously can damage your own sense of self. It isn't just limited to physical appearance, we hold in our emotions and our thoughts, hold back on the things we enjoy to please our partners. Yet, they do not do the same for us - or do they?

Restriction

At some point in our lives, most of us have been in a relationship and have felt some kind of restriction. Sometimes, we allow it as we feel that a compromise is required. So we do so out of love.

When we are making constant compromises due to fear of being alone; instead of out of love. There is a distinct issue which needs to be addressed. Fear.

It works both ways as well.

  • Do you allow your partner to be themselves?
  • Does your partner allow you to be yourself?

A partner whom wants you to change, is a partner whom seeks to turn you into their ideal person. If you wish to be that ideal clone, please read no more!

Cloning

To agree to be told how to dress, how to act, what to say, What to do, To be asked to make constant changes for another persons benefit is in effect you allowing yourself to become that perfect clone - or droid if you wish...

At first, you do these changes and things in an effort to please your partner... and you think that these changes are worthwhile and good. You believe you should change because you respect your partner and their values.

But over time, you start feeling like someone else. You start to loose your sense of self, you start to feel angry and want to strike out, or you have rebellious thoughts, but are afraid to take action for fear of your partners reaction.

Note the word FEAR.

Allowing yourself to grow.

If you have been compromising on your wishes for some time, and feel the need for change, the first thing to do is to talk to your partner.

You should try to address this, not in an accusing 'You always make me,' tone; nor a demanding 'I want to do this now, like it or lump it' tone.
Try to explain how you are feeling, focusing on your needs; and then listen to their input. Small steps are sometimes the best way, rather than dramatic overnight change.

For example; if you want short hair, but your partner likes it long, try cutting a few inches at a time.. you get the picture... I'm sure.

If you are afraid of your partners reaction, you should consider whether or not your partner is helping you to grow as a person or not.

We so often stay in limiting relationships out of a fear of being alone, a fear of starting again or even fears of losing our home, status etc... But fear is a prison of our own making.

Allowing your partner to grow

If you feel you are restricting your partners growth, the first thing I have to say is something that you may not wish to hear!

Stop being so selfish!

Ok, so that was harsh. But; Your partner is a person, not an extension of who you are. Your partner has their own values, their own needs and their own ways to express who they are. They need their own space, as well as time with you, and time with their friends.

If you partner desires a certain look, or a certain car, wants a particular holiday, a new job. Sure express your concerns, but don't try to restrict them or resentment will grow. Resentment can grow over weeks, months or even years. But it does always remain.

We think we know what our partners want, without even asking them. We presume and presumptions don't always work out. If you are feeling restricted, maybe your partner is too.

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