If you feel that your guy doesn’t value you the way he should and that you’re putting much more into the relationship than he is, it seems you’re being taken for granted. There’s an imbalance there in that he always feels he can count on you to please him, but he’s not making an effort to keep you happy.
You have to address this because the situation won’t improve while he’s happily getting all his needs met.
You will just get more and more resentful, and it will put a strain on your relationship.
It’s no fun being taken for granted or playing the martyr. It’s time to redress the balance.
If you want your relationship to last, don’t start playing games with him. Ignoring him or trying to make a point by “giving him a taste of his own medicine” isn’t mature and won’t help him appreciate you. In many instances, your man won’t even be aware that he’s taking you for granted, and playing mind games won’t help you to get your point across.
Instead of playing games to get your own back, here’s a seven step plan you can follow to deal with the problem.
Value Yourself First
More often than not, he’s taking you for granted because you allowed him to. You might feel you have to somehow prove yourself in the relationship and by doing everything to make things work from the beginning, you’ve set a precedent that he’s taken as the norm. If he knows that you’ll drop everything and always be there at his beck and call, he won’t assume otherwise unless you tell him.
You need to look at how you see yourself before you try to change how he sees you. Work on your confidence and self-esteem so that you understand your own value, and you can then tackle the issue of him valuing you as well.
Decide What Changes You Would Like To See
Think about what would make you happy. A vague “I want him not to take me for granted any more” is probably not going to help much.
What specific things do you want him to do differently? Unless you understand this, neither will he. For example “I’d like to get to choose the movie/restaurant every other time” and “I’d like him to call when he’s going to be late” are specific things he can change about his behavior.
Talk It Out
Telling him straight out that you feel he’s taking you for granted is usually the best course of action. Choose a neutral time. Don’t bring it up when he’s suggesting something once again that means you’ll have to make a sacrifice of some kind. If you do, he’ll usually take it to mean you’re just talking about that one time.
Tell him what he can do to make things better for you and which specific changes would make you happy.
Once you put the issue on the table, don’t expect that he’ll automatically change or that everything will be just fine and dandy. Agree that the next time you feel taken for granted, you’ll let him know!
Stay Clear And Firm
Don’t drop your guard once you’ve talked about the problem. If you feel he’s taking you for granted again, let him know. Stick to your guns and make sure you see the changes you want.
Say No Sometimes
There’s no need to be mean about it, but feel free to say no to anything he asks if you really don’t want to do something or it’s not convenient. He’ll respect you more than if your drop everything for him or do something you hate just because he wants you to.
Take Some Time For You
Show that you have a full life of your own. Make sure that you organize outings with girlfriends and family and time to do those things you like to do alone too. Don’t wrap your whole life around him and his needs.
If Things Don’t Improve
Chances are once you start sticking up for yourself, he’ll both admire and respect you more over time and it will be a turning point in your relationship. If he’s just stringing you along though, and you’re only his girlfriend until someone better comes along, he may not care that there’s an imbalance in your relationship, and he won’t bother to change his ways.
In that case, if he constantly takes you for granted, give him his marching orders. You don’t need a guy in your life who does not care for you. Leave room for someone who will cherish you and deserve you.
Of course, it’s best if you can prevent this whole taking-for-granted scenario from happening in the first place. If you’re still in the early stages of dating, make changes now before unhelpful patterns develop.
If you don’t want to be taken for granted, don’t be ready and available all the time. Let him know when your plans conflict. Suggest movies and restaurants that you like, and make sure your choices are taken into account at least half the time. Don’t feel like you always have to be the giver, and only give him the level of attention that he gives you.
If you don’t allow him to take you for granted from the beginning, you won’t have to worry about setting him straight later on!
Over to you: Have you ever felt that you were being taken for granted? What did you do about it? Please share in the comments below.