Dear Ladies, Your Partner Is
NOT the Key to Your Happiness
Whenever we choose a partner, we look for something specific, right? We look for the perfect significant other who can fit the mold of our imagination. In other words, we look for someone who can make us happy.
If you want romance, go find a romantic partner. If you want happiness, go find a funny person. If you want sex, go find an attractive person. The list just goes on and on. It’s actually a myth that relationships exist to make you happy. “If I am not happy, I am out” promotes the idea that if you are dissatisfied with your relationship, partner or marriage, you should quit. There are lots of women out there who are under the false impression that the key to their happiness lies in their marriage. I was once like that and then life hit me hard.
Instead of telling my story, let me build my case with what relationship experts have to say about marriage and happiness. The idea that “You are supposed to make your spouse happy” is a bad piece of advice. According to Hal Runkel, a relationship expert, the idea that you are supposed to meet each other’s needs and make each other happy is totally bogus. In fact, he says it’s the most horrific piece of advice anyone can ever give. Runkel explained this notion by using his own wife as an example. He said he is a whole person and his wife is not powerful enough to complete him and he is not powerful enough to complete her because she is a complete person on her own. She is a complete individual and this is why he’s in love with her. He made a suggestion that instead of needing each other, why not want each other.
Authors of Happy Together, Suzie Pileggi and James Pawelski shared a similar viewpoint. They say that looking for a soul mate that completes you can make you believe that a perfect partner exists and fate will bring you two together. This makes you wait for a romantic lightning to strike without taking any action. People need to step out of this fantasy and work on self-development to prepare for a healthy relationship because there is no such thing as a happy relationship. As a matter of fact, your partner can never respect you more than you respect yourself.
I learned it the hard way…
To all the ladies out there, relying on your partner to feel happy and content is detrimental for not just the relationship but you as an individual. No wonder after every breakup you go through an emotional roller-coaster even though you dated him for just 3 months.It is wrong to consider your partner your happy-maker.The thing with happiness is it can’t be found in another person.
Here are some mistakes I made because of my false assumptions:
- I convinced myself that my partner is the person who will lift me up in the time of need. But he let me down over and over again. I put him on the pedestal of my expectations. I forgot that I can’t ask my partner to make me smile when he is down himself.
- I used to turn to my partner for validation.It was like I was carving for his approval before I could even celebrate anything.
- Whenever my partner used to go out with his friends alone, I felt insecure. My relationship was turning into a codependent relationship.
- I started resenting anyone who made my partner smile and that included my family and best friend. I reached the stage of paranoia and even used XNSPY – a spying app to keep tabs on my partner. I thought of it not because I suspected he was cheating but because I envied there are other people besides me who can make him happy.
I was naïve and my codependency along with other problems in our relationship made him run away from me. Our relationship ended and I was devastated. After 5 years of the breakup and months and months of therapy, I was able to figure out that there is no one but you who can make you happy, not your partner, not your friends.
And then there’s the jealousy…
I used to feel powerless because I wasn’t in control of my happiness. I used to feel miserable most out of the times especially when my partner wasn’t able to meet my expectations. I was too young to understand that a guy can add to my happiness, he cannot be the sole reason for me to smile every single day. This led to consistent and lingering thought in my head that I wasn’t good enough for my partner.
We’ve all read through numerous articles and self-help books to know that jealousy is a feeling that is almost always within our control. But often times, the decisions we make, and our feelings themselves will push this reality away from our minds. I materialized my decisions based on jealousy by spying on my partner. Yes, I’m one of the few you read about on the internet who demolishes one’s relationship because of persistent spying. I mentioned XNSPY earlier, and truth be told, it was one of the many apps and ways I used to find out who my partner was talking to.
I used to sneak a peek when I could on my partner’s phone, find ways to browse through saved bookmarks on his browser, and then all of this lead to me paying for an XNSPY subscription. I had all the information I needed in the palm of my hands now but the jealousy never disappeared. I thought I was in control, and that having a spying app giving me all the updates I needed, would put my mind to rest.
But it wasn’t the snooping, the tantrums, or XNSPY that helped in the end. Because just like jealousy, or any other feeling for that matter, you have to first internalize your feelings, and learn to be happy yourself. And for me at least, learning to be secure in my relationships was a big element of my overall happiness.
So, how are you supposed to find happiness?
Now it’s fair to question how to find happiness? The answer is simple; your happiness lies within you and within God. If you follow His way, it will make your heart content. As you relieve your partner from the burden of making you happy, then you are able to focus on what actually matters in the relationship.
A famous American author, Og Mandino, said:
“True happiness lives with you. Don’t waste your time and effort searching for peace and content in the world outside. There is no happiness in having or getting, it’s only in giving. Reach out, smile, share, and hug. Happiness is a like a perfume you cannot pour on others without getting a few drops on yourself.”
My message to you is that relationships are designed to help us grow, change ourselves, and connect with others. They are not designed to make us fulfilled or satisfied. Yes, they do give us joy and fulfillment at times but not always. If this doesn’t sound logical to you, then as yourself, do you want to take the responsibility of someone else’s fulfillment? Do you want to be with someone who believes you are their only happiness? I bet not.
Remember not to lose yourself as you lose a relationship. After a breakup, it’s normal to feel sad for some time but eventually, you have to accept that people can be an addition to your happiness, they cannot be the sole source. My advice is simple: there are ways to staying in love in a relationship, but you can’t get anywhere without loving yourself first. So, to all the women out there, make yourself the priority. Things will start changing when happiness becomes a bonus instead of your life’s mission.