On the face of it, every relationship is a perfect relationship when it begins. It's the people who spoil it by bringing their expectations to burden it! Just think about it for a moment, if either party had NO expectations of the other, and merely enjoyed what unfolded in front of them, accepting their partners as they are, there would be far fewer breakdowns. We kill relationships with our expectations because, as they are unfulfilled, we then get resentful, frustrated and bitter towards our partners. We blame them for things not working as expected.
So your man (or woman) has hurt you, or you feel rejected and unwanted by a fellow you fancy. Bitter vengeful thoughts occupy your mind. You could cheerfully throttle them today. You feel really bad every time you think of them. But bitterness should be avoided for five important reasons.
First, potential partners come into our lives for any of four main reasons: To help us out of a crisis, to teach us something new, to boost our confidence and build us up to face the next stage of our journey, or to be the permanent spouse we seek. The trouble with many single people is that they are so keen to find such a person, they tend to believe every person they meet will be the BIG ONE, the permanent partner. They burden every meeting with that expectation and are then surprised and bitter when it doesn't work out. Instead of allowing it to unfold in their own way, they expect a lot which is then not delivered. You cannot be bitter in such circumstances. You have to use it as a valuable experience for life while you continue to seek that specific person.
Second, by being bitter, you are really blaming someone else for your feeling of failure or rejection, not taking responsibility for your own life. If things do not work out, then that guy is perceived to be responsible. But BOTH parties are usually responsible for any bad experience in a relationship. There is always a trigger, even unintended, for the reaction of others. If your man is suddenly seeing someone else, what is he missing at home? Why doesn't he find you attractive anymore to hold his attention? What message is he trying to give you? Pointless just calling him a 'bastard' without looking at what you are not doing to prevent his defection. It is always easier to focus on others when things are not working out, but, most times, focusing on ourself to get the change we seek is the most effective way of doing something positive about our situation. Blaming others is only a temporary palliative which does not make you feel any better long term because partners won't respond the way you want them to. Thinking up ways you can change the situation in your favour works every time.
Less Attractive and Depressing
Third, being bitter just keeps you in the same rut and robs you of a future. If you are stuck back there in the past reliving things and being bitter towards every new man because of another man's boorish behaviour, not only do you become less attractive and depressing in the process, but you merely keep potential suitors away from you too. It also means that you are not learning from the situation and moving on to something better. You are actually using it to feel vengeful and martyred, which prevents your own development or any new perspective. Only by leaving such feelings in the past where they belong can you give yourself the new start that is essential in such situations.
Fourth, bitterness is negative emotion and that does not empower you and actually endangers your health. It merely destroys good emotions, makes you physically vulnerable and keeps you feeling impotent and inadequate. The more inadequate you feel, the more bitter you will become in a never-ending circle of negativity. You have to break that cycle to affirm the quality person you are, to reinforce your positive self so that you can control your own destiny without leaving it up to the actions of others.
Finally, any form of bitterness or resentment of others keeps you tied to them too. Forgiveness is the key to moving on and to achieving greater things in your life. Harbouring bitter thoughts keeps you in a negative morass which gradually suffocates you, despite your best efforts. It would be like operating on one cylinder instead of three. By forgiving others, you also forgive yourself and replace the negative vibes with positive feelings. You also break the bad connection permanently to get even more joy in your life and the kind of relationship you seek.
Is your partner/date the wrong person for you? Do you feel comfortable and enhanced with them? Find out with this QUIZ!
©Elaine Sihera (Ms CYPRAH) 2012
Emotional Health and People Management Consultant
"Happiness is a state of being. We are the ones who decide whether we wish to be happy or not, by the script we use inside our heads."