Have you ever been in a long-term relationship that ended in heartbreak and disaster? If so, did you take some personal time afterward to think about “WHY” the relationship ended?
I mean really dig deep inside all of the uncomfortable moments back in time. In all those moments of feeling unloved, loneliness, frustration, and heartbreak.
If you want to move forward in life, it’s essential to reflect back and acknowledge “WHY” the relationship didn’t work. If you skip this step in the healing process your next relationship “WILL” end in disaster too.
How Do I Know?
I’ve experienced unhealthy relationships for over twenty years. I was married at the age of eighteen to an abusive man and endured three and one-half years of domestic violence. I lost custody of our children and quickly moved in with another man.
This unhealthy relationship lasted for twenty plus years. Until one day, I couldn’t take the weight of caring the relationship by myself anymore. I couldn’t go one more day feeling unloved and disrespected. I left him for the third and last time.
I left him for ME.
Reflecting Back to Identify 10 Reasons Why My Relationship Failed
I took some personal time alone with God to heal. I began to reflect back on my relationship and found the reasons “WHY” the relationship failed. Thanks to Joe Amoia from GPS for Love his “Mirror Time” advice enabled me to reflect back and understand what went wrong.
Identifying the reasons for the demise of the relationship will help you avoid making the same mistakes in the future.
It will help you recover and move forward in life.
This is not meant to point fingers or blame anyone, only to understand why the relationship failed. Always remember that relationships are a two-way street.
Both parties involved are responsible for the demise of a relationship.
You must take responsibility for your own actions to experience personal growth.
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Reason #1 – Lack of Knowledge
The lack of knowledge is the number one reason why the relationship failed.
I was in my early twenties when we meet. I didn’t have a clue about dating or being in a long-term relationship. I didn’t have a clue about healthy and unhealthy relationships. I knew nothing about God’s purpose for man and woman in marriage.
I knew nothing about men in general!
I wasn’t aware that men and women thought and behaved in a different way. I only knew what my parents taught me. That knowledge was dysfunctional to the utmost.
I chased him around town, we meet a few times and within a few months, we were living in an apartment together. We were together for over twenty years. I left him twice and returned for the children. Twenty something years later we split up for good.
It’s essential to know what a healthy relationship looks like. When you have the proper knowledge, you can make wise choices and better decisions in life.
Reason #2 – Putting Him First
Putting him first was the second reason why the relationship failed.
I put him first right from the beginning of our relationship. I had my own apartment and was enrolled in GED classes. In a few months time, everything in my life changed again. I didn’t even think twice about leaving everything behind to follow him.
I realize now that my state of mind was not healthy. I had just left an abusive three and one-half year marriage a few months prior. I should have been in counseling for domestic violence.
I shouldn’t have been chasing men!
I continued to dote over him and catered to his needs for several years. I would make his lunch, serve him meals, and give back massages and other things. I never asked for or received much in return. I was alright with this arrangement for many years.
But, this is an unhealthy behavior to have towards a man on a continuous basis.
He didn’t need a mother!
He needed a healthy partner for life.
Reason #3 – Moving in Together too Quick
Moving in together too quick was the third reason why the relationship failed.
As I said, we moved into an apartment together within a few months. This is not ever acceptable behavior for anyone. Not ever!
I learned that a healthy relationship develops over time. Relationships need some time to nurture for long-term growth. You need to make sure that your relationship is going to continue growing over time. You need to make sure that you both continue to grow and flourish in life.
You need to grow together as a couple and apart as individuals.
Unhealthy relationships are like cancer inside you. They eat away at you inside until no healthy parts remain for you to live a productive life.
Reason #4 – Communication
Lack of communication is the fourth reason why the relationship failed.
Our communication with each other was good for several years. It was never great.
As the years went by, our communication with one another dwindled to nothing. We communicated the basics of daily living and nothing more.
We shut one another out!
I believe the core of a healthy relationship is communication. When you lack communication with a partner, you stop being a partner of that person.
Reason #5 – Assumptions
Assumptions are the fifth reason why the relationship failed.
The act of assuming or taking for granted. I assumed a great deal over the years.
I made assumptions about his love or lack of love for me. I assumed that men expressed feelings of love like a woman does. I assumed that he didn’t love me due to his lack of feelings, affection and attention towards me.
When the reality was, I didn’t know what a man’s love even was to begin with. I didn’t know that a man shows love in other ways.
I made assumptions that he just didn’t want to work a full-time job. I made assumptions that he didn’t want to work on a continuous basis without quitting. That he didn’t want to support his family.
I assumed that he gave up on us!
When the reality was, he felt that he was failing his family. He felt like a failure. I was never happy with him or any effort he made. He gave up trying.
He assumed that I would do everything and would always be there for him. We took each other for granted.
The assumptions made over the years were all wrong. I made them not even knowing the truth about relationships, love and men. We both suffered a great deal because of assumptions too.
Reason #6 – Accepting Poor Behavior
Accepting poor behavior is the sixth reason why the relationship failed.
We were both guilty of displaying and accepting poor behavior from each other. I was a little less tolerant or forgiving due to past abuse. He accepted poor behavior from me and was more forgiving than he should have been.
Neither one of us had set personal boundaries to protect ourselves. We allowed each other to display poor behavior. We didn’t need accountability for or change of the poor behavior from each other.
We were both too nice and forgiving to some degree. Allowing poor behavior to continue in a relationship is unhealthy. The relationship will not continue to grow and the poor behavior will not change.
Reason #7 – Absence of an Emotional Connection
The absence of an emotional connection is the seventh reason why the relationship failed.
Is this a real thing?
I don’t know.
I’m still a bit confused about emotional connections with a man.
I never had an emotional connection with a man. It felt more like we were roommates with each other. We didn’t have an emotional bond with each other.
I’m guessing that it’s difficult to have this type of bond with a man when you lack communication.
Reason #8 – Lack of Growth
The lack of growth is the eighth reason why the relationship failed.
Healthy things continue to grow. Unhealthy things wither away and die.
Our relationship didn’t continue to grow. We didn’t continue to grow together as a couple. In a way, we halted each other’s growth to some degree.
I began to grow in a different direction than him. I wanted a better relationship. I could no longer accept his poor behavior. I decided to leave for good.
Reason #9 – Lack of Respect
The lack of respect is the ninth reason why the relationship failed.
I decided to leave for good due to his lack of love and respect for me.
I didn’t feel respected due to his lack of effort in supporting his family. It felt like he just gave up on us. He didn’t help me. He hurt me.
I hurt and disrespected him over the years too. I’m just as guilty.
When a person loves you they will try to respect you. They will try not to hurt you.
I don’t think we did this on purpose. I think years of living in a dysfunctional relationship with each other took a toll on us both. In short, we were toxic to one another. I needed to leave so we could both begin to heal.
Reason #10 – Bitching and Complaining
Bitching and complaining is the tenth reason why the relationship failed.
Reason #10 is for the Ladies. Men hardly ever bitch or complain. Perhaps this reason should be in the number one spot.
It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop, than with a brawling woman in a wide house. Proverbs 21:9 KJV
It is better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and an angry woman. Proverbs 21:19 KJV
Bitching and complaining get’s you “NOWHERE” with or “NOTHING” from a man.
Well, I take that back, it will get you one thing.
Shut out completely!
I spent years bitching and complaining at him to fulfill my needs and the desires of my heart. The end result, he shut down on me and shut me out completely.
It didn’t work!
It only deepened the divide between us.
I didn’t know how to communicate in a manner that would yield results. He didn’t know how to communicate in a manner that would get me to shut up.
The constant bombardment of bitching and complaining made him feel like a failure. It pushed him further away from me. It had the opposite effect than what I desired. I have learned to stop bitching and complaining. I’m still working on learning how to communicate better with men.
The Final Conclusion
A few years later, we sat down together to have a talk. I apologized to him for the things I did wrong in our relationship. I apologized for disrespecting him out of anger.
Do you know what he said?
He said I feel better now.
He was hoping for a different outcome. He was hoping we would get back together. But, I knew in my heart that this was not healthy for me or him. We needed time alone with God to heal and experience personal growth.
The most important lesson learned from this relationship was the effect we have on others. We have the ability to love, be angry, disrespect others and to forgive one another.
Our actions in life can have a lasting effect on others. We should always be mindful of that in our daily lives. We should live a life of love, compassion, and forgiveness for one another. We should forgive even when things go drastically wrong.
Love covers a multitude of sin.
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