Saturday, September 8, 2018

Ending a relationship

Koko <3 U! Entry 1 Page 5. Koko explaining.
This week's comic update will depict a particular relationship as a whole in about 5 panels. I will comment on that particular relationship on the comic blog directly but it brings up a good question, "When should you just give up on making a relationship work?"

There's no hard fast rules to this relationship thing since it is a very personal thing. What I might find acceptable behavior in my partners might not be okay in another relationship. For instance, some women think it is cheating for their partner to look at porn, sexy pictures of other women on the internet or looking at other women. The defense to it is that those pictures or videos aren't real. It's not the person engaging but some people argue that in their minds, the cheating has occurred, therefore, it is not allowed.
This is really disrespectful. He totally is being an asshole here.
I think pornography viewing is one of the biggest sticking points in most monogamous relationships. One partner is forbidden from watching porn or even masturbating because it is somehow cheating. If it was me and I was given such an ultimatum, I would consider getting out of that relationship. It's not that porn or masturbation is more important than my partner but because it's my partner dictating to me how I should be thinking, seeing, experiencing and doing. You cannot control where your mind wanders. If you give this person that power over you, what's next?

Do they start approving of who you are friends with? What you look at? Who you talk to? This is of course a worst case scenario but I have seen this sort of thing happen to my friends. One friend married a woman he met through WoW with a few children from another relationship but ended up not being to live with her since he was stationed overseas and she had to stay in the States to maintain her custody agreement for the kids. But he was forbidden from watching porn, or masturbating. He loved her and he agreed to it, but it did not stop her from yelling at him about what he was doing at any given point of the day. It was a seriously bad relationship. He found out later that he was paying for her ex's bills and he had paid off her debt but she was still racking up more.

He persisted in that relationship because he loved her. He wanted to make it work. She tanked his bank account and started killing his credit score by taking credit out in his name. They were married, she had a power of attorney. He tried to resolve the problems, his "porn addiction" and went to counselling. She starting dating other people through WoW and he eventually found out. He wasn't allowed to look at videos and she was sleeping with other people behind his back. She had taken control over him and it took 4 years of this sort of manipulation for him to say that he had enough. He finally filed for divorce.

I give him a lot of credit, he really tried to make it work. I just think that after he found out about her using his money to float her deadbeat ex he should have started questioning. He was being used. But he endured it out of love. He is now trying to repair his life and his credit.

In a 2015 issue of Psychology Today an article titled, "Top 10 reasons why relationships Fail" trust issues was cited as the number 1 reason. This isn't the only reason to end a relationship but it is a good one.

If you cannot trust your partner or if you feel that your partner does not trust you, why are you in a relationship with them? But more so, have you attempted to communicate with your partner your feelings of mistrust? Do you feel like you can actually talk to them?

If you can't communicate with your partner, then you might be in trouble. There has to be mutual trust and a good line of communication. If you have never even tried, you might want to consider talking to them.

The porn ultimatum is just one example of a trust issue but that issue is also rooted in jealousy. The partner could be saying that they don't trust their other with porn because they are afraid that they will go out and cheat on them if they witness sexual scenarios that they might not be willing to indulge in. Or perhaps they feel like they are inadequate compared to the porn star or someone else. It could be a matter that the idea of their partner looking is telling them that THEY aren't GOOD ENOUGH. I would argue that the act of scoping out another person or flirting with another in front of your partner is rude and disrespectful if you haven't communicated with your partner.

I actually thought the scenario in Beyoncé's "If I were a boy" music video was a good example of a deliberate level of disrespect for a relationship. I thought it was an interesting way to handle the topic.

It is possible to cheat on your partner while being open or polyamorous. How you might ask? By lying to them or being disrespectful towards their feelings. I would argue that flirting with someone else without talking to your partner about it is wrong. There have to be some managed expectations. It can be as simple as, "Would you mind if I flirted with some people at this party that I was interested in pursuing?" This way, it gives both people a chance to state what their expectations are and gives one partner to opt out. It's okay to say "No. I don't want to see you hit on other people in front of me. It makes me feel a certain way." This way both people know what the expectations are, that they are at the party together as partners and will be going home together or that they will be together for only a part of the night and possibly leaving separately. Managing expectations will save everyone's feelings at the end of the day.

But I digress, I was talking about the when you should end a relationship.

There are some good times to consider calling it quits on a relationship. For me the following things would end a relationship for me, regardless of the strength of my feelings.

  • If my partner ever hit me outside of martial arts training, it'd be over and the police would be involved. Physical abuse is the easiest determination of whether my partner is trust worthy. If it is ever okay in a romantic relationship to hit me outside of me trying to hurt them, fuck no. I'd be done. I've seen what physically abusive relationships do to people. I might love that person but I am no one's punching bag.
  • If I don't feel like I can trust my partner. I mean, after all of the talking and such has come to a wall. If I think my partner is lying to me about something important like a drug addiction not something trivial like not washing their dishes. There is a lot of risk with emotionally and physically engaging with someone else. You are opening your life to them and if they can't respect you enough to be honest, then they aren't worth your time. 
  • If my partner does something that makes me feel unsafe. If I am worried for my personal well-being at any point of my interactions with them.. then I definitely don't need to be in a relationship. 
  • If I felt like I was being manipulated into doing something about my morals. There are certain lines that I feel shouldn't be crossed. Certain things that will never be okay in my book.
  • If I felt like my partner isn't actually interested in me. I have already lived this, I definitely know what it feels like to be discarded. If I ever feel that way again, I would rather end the relationship than keep trying to make it work. 
For me a relationship needs to have: mutual affection, trust, and honesty. If something is missing then why am I wasting my time and theirs? Please note that I did not mention physicality. It is possible to be in a loving relationship without a physical component but their has to be a mutual understanding between partners. Just my thoughts for this week! I hope it's helpful! 

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