It happened somewhere around the break up...
Dating is hard. Relationships are even harder. I remember when I was in my early 20s many older women and men would tell me that it’s best to find love sooner rather than later. This reason was given mainly because it was thought that in my later years I would begin to get stuck in my ways. But after observing life from my perspective I ask: Am I really stuck in my ways or is it that I now clearly understand what I want? Do I now have the wisdom to understand that it’s OK to walk away from some one that is attempting to modify your non-negotiables?
With that being said, I think my lot is to be single.
For me it’s not a sad thing. I think I’ve been alone so long that I’ve become comfortable with it. I have an understanding and willingness to compromise on many things when it comes to relationships, but I have one non-negotiable that I will not budge on. Most recently I had a very brief romance with a great guy, but my main non-negotiable is the reason we are no longer together. He did nothing wrong. But I realized, that at this point in life and after all I've been through, when it comes to relationships it's important to me, and my right, to be happy in my relationship.
I find in relationships that it is OK to have a place where you draw a line. We say all the time that if someone loves you they will change who they are for you. This is true… but only to a certain extent. Exhibit A: If you’re a cheating dog, but say you love me, yes, I expect for you to change that part of yourself for me. I think that is reasonable. However, Exhibit B: If we’re in a relationship that has grown and we have come to love each other deeply is it reasonable to expect you to change for something that you don’t necessarily agree with? What if my non-negotiable is that I need someone that is passionately devoted to saving money just as I am, but my partner is more of a free spirit and doesn’t really believe in saving money – should that person change for me? The reality is for that relationship to work someone has to compromise or change. Either I’m going to accept that I’ll be the only one saving in the relationship or my partner, because he loves me so much, will have to change how he feels about saving money. Is that fair? That depends on the couple.
Just because you love someone it doesn’t mean you’re obligated to agree to something that your inner moral compass doesn’t agree with. Have we been teaching the wrong thing about love?
God gave his Son because he wanted to, he knew we needed a savior. But God, still being God, gives us the free will to choose if we want to accept Jesus or not. And if we choose not to accept, because that’s God’s non-negotiable, he has every right to choose not to deal with us.
I recently watched an episode of "Iyanla, Fix My Life" on OWN. She stated she left her husband of 14 years because she realized that he was incapable of loving her the way she needed to be loved. There was no doubt in her mind that he loved her, but he wanted to love her the way he wanted to love and not in the way Iyanla needed him to love. She finally was in a place to recognize that her non-negotiable was not being respected.
So just because you love someone you’re not obligated to change or compromise on certain situations. But if you choose to stick to your non-negotiable please don’t complain to the world about it when you look up and you’re single for 5, 10, 15 years. Be happy with yourself that you’re willing to be alone than not be fulfilled in the area of the relationship that is most important to you.