The Monika A. Mazur Blog

Setting Boundaries in Romantic Relationships

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In the realm of relationships, boundaries play a crucial role in ensuring a healthy dynamic, be it in the workplace or romantic partnerships. Today, let's focus on the latter and delve into the significance of establishing boundaries from the onset of a romantic relationship. Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you started dating someone, having certain expectations about the relationship, only to discover that your partner had different ideas? You settled for whatever they were willing to offer, even if it didn't align with your desires. As time passed, you may have wondered why the relationship wasn't working, why you were constantly disappointed, and why you weren't getting what you wanted.

Here's the truth that may tickle your pickle: it's on you. From the beginning, you failed to create the relationship you wanted. Consequently, there was no reason for your partner to provide what you desired. Let's draw a parallel to work and money. Imagine you quote a rate of $100 per hour for a project, but the employer offers only $60. If you accept the lower rate and hope they will eventually recognize your value and pay you the full amount, you're setting yourself up for disappointment. The same principle applies to relationships. If you have certain boundaries and expectations, and you settle for less, don't be surprised when your partner doesn't meet your needs.

So, how can you change this pattern? It's simple, but not necessarily easy, especially if you've developed a habit of accepting less than you deserve. Here's a straightforward solution: when you start dating someone and have mutual interest, have an open conversation about your expectations. Express your desire for exclusivity, consistent communication, and the way you envision spending time together. If your partner agrees and presents their perspective, great! However, if they express different preferences, you have two options: stick to what you truly want or acknowledge that the relationship won't work for you.

If you settle for less than what you desire, you forfeit the right to complain about the treatment you receive. Remember the work example? If you agree to work for $60 per hour when you wanted $100, why would your employer suddenly increase your pay? Similarly, if you compromise your boundaries in a relationship, hoping your partner will change, they likely won't. In fact, they might even provide less over time. There's simply no incentive for them to do otherwise.

To prompt a reevaluation of their stance, you must keep your word and take action. If you want 100% and they offer 50%, kindly decline and move on. Avoid engaging in half-hearted interactions, occasional hangouts, or casual intimacy. It's either your way or no way, because settling for their terms will only lead to disappointment. Remember, you allow these dynamics to occur by accepting less from the beginning.

I understand this might sound harsh, but my intention is for you to find happiness and fulfillment in your relationships. You deserve a partnership that brings you joy and satisfaction. By setting clear boundaries, expressing your needs, and following through, you empower yourself to create the relationship you truly desire. It may not be easy, especially if you've repeated this pattern in the past, but it is simple. Once you implement this approach, you'll never find yourself in unsatisfying relationships, perpetually disappointed or drained.

Reevaluate your relationships and recognize if you're settling for a half-hearted connection. Remember that you hold the power to establish your rules.