Being in love feels wonderful. We all want to feel that deep connection to another. For a time, he’s all you can think about. Perish the thought that it might not last.
Most women are willing to invest time and effort to keep that loving feeling, and that’s no bad thing.
But there’s an important distinction between creating a deep connection with someone, and being in so deep that you lose yourself.
The problem is that an over-eagerness to keep your guy happy, means that the relationship is in danger of failing.
No good guy wants a “Yes” woman – a mirror of himself. He wants a living, breathing human he can relate to.
Trying to please all the time does not make you loved – it just makes you seem insecure, needy and desperate. All qualities that are far from attractive. The more you throw yourself into being his ideal woman, the less interesting you become to him.
So yes, you can do things to please him. That’s a given in a loving relationship, but do things to please yourself too.
It’s a balance thing. Don’t worry about doing loving things for your guy unless you recognize a few of these symptoms. (If you recognize most of them then you need to take steps to remedy the situation right away!)
- you hardly have time for friends and family
- you hesitate to make other arrangements in case he calls
- when you do spend time away from him, you’re constantly thinking about him, talking about him or texting him
- you end up doing what he wants to do when you are together
- you change things about yourself you think he’d disapprove of
- you hide aspects of yourself you’re not sure he’d like
- you wear what you think he’d like you to wear – all the time – not just for special dates
- you start watching, reading and listening to the stuff he likes (but he doesn’t do this for you)
- you go out as a couple with his friends but not yours
- your own dreams, goals and ambitions take a backseat
- you keep up with his hobbies and interests even when they don’t interest you
This is all about developing and maintaining your sense of self, and who you are, what you like and dislike, and what you want. Be a person you love, first and foremost.
There’s a kind of myth that goes around in romantic fiction and movies that you need another person to complete you. You don’t! You are an individual, and a guy should be an add-on, a happy one, hopefully, but not a part of you that you have to find, to be able to function as a whole human being.
- It’s natural that you will have less time to spend with others when you are deep into a new relationship, but make sure that you do set aside some time to see friends and family, and have fun with them without your guy
- keep up the hobbies and interests that you don’t share with your guy
- never be afraid to speak up about your likes and dislikes
- put forward opinions about what you’d like to do on dates
- avoid using we when talking about opinions – as in phrases like “we like to do this” – you have your own mind and he has his
- be aware of those things that are important to you personally (your values, your goals, your career). Continue to plan for your future to include these things, and be proud of what you achieve on your own
- try the things that he is into – you might find something new that you like – but don’t continue to tag along if it’s not for you
If you’re a good match for him, he’ll love you – the real you – just as you are. You don’t need to change yourself to become the person he needs you to be. It’s important to be Close But Not Too Close
Over to you: Have you ever “lost yourself” in love? Or found yourself in danger of being in an all consuming relationship? Please share in the comments below.
Great article! In the beginning of my relationship I was guilty of many of the things you listed above. A friend recently straightened me out with this little reminder: “Don’t lose the things that made you healthy and whole”. That was a wake up call for me, because slowly and over time I had begun to lose sight of my goals and aspirations. I was so consumed with “us” that I was losing touch with “me” and who I was. Things have mellowed out now. We have found our rhythm and balance has been restored in my life again. I’m blessed to have a wonderful man in my life but I had to remind myself of the things I had going on before he came into my life and return to the very things I was doing when he met me. Funny how many of the things I had let fall by the wayside were some of the things that drew him to me in the first place. Go figure 🙂
Thanks for sharing Stacey – a wonderful example of where things might have easily gone wrong and didn’t. I’m so pleased things worked out for you and besides, it’s a lot more fun to be “healthy and whole” than a shadow of yourself.
I have lost myself many times when I was younger! I would try and be what my boyfriends wanted me to be, but I was always miserable when I did it. I even did little things, like pretending to like the same type of movies or clothes. Ugh, to think back on that time…It is much better to be yourself and find a guy who loves you for that.
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Thanks for your comment Bellaisa. I’m sure it is one of those things that grows with age (or confidence) – the sooner we get the lesson, the better…
What a wonderful article! I will share it with my social media friends! I feel that anybody can relate to it. For me, I think that I have experienced my close friends completely “loose themselves” after starting a new relationship. It has ben difficult for me to understand and deal with it as at times I have felt that I am being ignored or used in the friendship. Any advice or sharing on the subject appreciated!
Linking up from the Wondering Brain blog hop!
Sometimes it is seen as jealousy, if you try and interfere, but it can be hard, I agree, to bite your tongue and let things run their course. Eventually most women wake up, and realize they need their female friends, as much as their guy, and their own interests as well as his. If you’re still around at that point, you’re a good friend. The same thing happens at different stages in life. For example, if a friend has a baby, her family becomes all consuming for a time, but eventually she has some attention to spare. My only advice really is to have lots of friends, so that you are able to give the ones who are losing themselves the space to come to their senses, but it also does no harm to throw hints that you never see her anymore and would love to catch up without being seen to criticize.
Ana recently posted…Why Women Fall In Love With The Wrong Guys