My husband I were talking about the big question, when are you ready to fall in love. Don't read too much into that, we are fine but we were discussing a friend that is going through a seperation from his wife. This friend was asking my husband when he knew I was the one and both of us have the exact same answer, because we didn't need to be in a relationship. There is a difference between love and need. When you need someone it is unhealthy and you accept things you shouldn't. It has a feeling of desperation which is not a good thing, it makes you do things that you wouldn't do, it is self destructive and in the end it is lonely. So when are you ready to move on from a relationship?
Jim looked at me and said he isn't sure why I am with him because he is nothing like the men I had been with before but that is exactly the reason he is the man for me. We all have a reason why we were in the bad relationships, it is not just one persons fault. You have to evaluate why you were with that person in the first place. Lets face it when it ends we all say the same thing, what did I ever see in him to begin with and you have to find out the answer to that or you will end up with the same relationship different face, trust me I know all to well. For me it was about my father, he was not a great man in fact he left but little girls have a funny way of romantizing their fathers and turning them into something they never were. I believe I was looking for my father's love in these other relationships, if I could get them to love me than I would feel the love of my father. It wasn't intentional but after some soul searching and asking myself the question of why I finally figured out what they all had in common.
I took some time to work on myself, to build my confidence and find out who I was, it was the best thing I ever did. During that time I learned that I was ok being alone, in fact I could be happy alone which I think is very important, before you get into a relationship you have to work on the relationship you have with yourself. Before I started dating again I sat down and figured out what I wanted in a relationship. What my must's were and what my deal breakers were. You need to know these before you even consider dating again or you are doomed to make another bad relationship decision. It is just as important to know what you want as it is to know what you don't want. I knew I wanted the kind of man my grandfather was, he was the only man that ever really loved me. He was kind and he saw me as being better than I was. When Jim says he is nothing like the other men the truth is he isn't but in all the right ways he is just like my grandfather. He see's me better than I see myself with him I feel like I am a better person and that is the best compliment I can possibly give him.
So when are you ready, well that is an answer only you can answer but I think if you are asking this question you already have the answer, not yet. Take some time and find out who you are, the good and the bad. Fist and most important stop worrying about the next relationship when you haven't moved on from the last one. If you are looking for someone to save you I have some hard truth for you, no one can save you but you. There is no knight in shining armour that is going to come riding in on his white steed to take you away from all of your problems. Your problems will always find you. A relationship is not the answer to your loneliness, that is something you feel deep inside of you because as chiche as this may be there is a difference from being alone and lonely.
Make a plan:
This a process that will take some actual work on your part and it is not going to be easy.
Above all be honest with yourself
How did you get here?
What do all of your failed relationships have in common?
Why did you accept or ignore the red flags, don't lie they were there you know you ignored it or told yourself it would change
Rediscover who you are, the truth is when we are in bad relationships we find that we change. We give up what we love or try to be something we aren't in an effort to make it work.
Forgive yourself, don't beat yourself up we ALL have made bad choices and you didn't do it for the wrong reasons. You had nothing but good intentions they just weren't the right intentions.
Reconnect with family and friends because chances are they all knew you were in the wrong relationship which probably caused you to be angry as well as force you to distance yourself from them, the truth.
Learn to like yourself, love yourself. If you don't respect yourself, who you are than chances are you will accept the same from someone else.
Make your list
What you need from a relationship
Your long term goals
The 'musts' that you have to have from the next significant other
This is the most important, the No's. The things you can not live with and do not make the same mistake and ignore these red flags with the idea that you can change it or live with it. If you do not like kids and do not want to be a mother do not get into a relationship with someone that has kids
I am not an expert in relationships by any means and I am a continuing work in progress. We are a blended family that has been full of issues which I knew going into the marraige. Marraige is not easy, life happens but if the base is strong you can survive it. I got into a relationship for all of the right reasons, I choose my husband for all of the right reasons and I know my grandfather would approve of him. My husband sees me as a better person than I am, he lifts me up and with him I am a better person without that we would never have been able to survive what life has thrown at us.