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Falling in love is magical.
We meet someone and there is an instant connection. It starts with butterflies in our tummy every time he calls us.
Each date is filled with excitement and eagerness. We get chills from those sweet kisses, holding hands, and loving smiles. We are falling in love.
Our hearts come alive.
We spend a lot of time together. We start to plan our future together. Our souls intertwine. They become our everything.
Our hearts are set on fire.
We are completely, madly, crazy in love. This is the person we were meant to be with. The one we have been waiting for all along.
Then one day, we wake up and we resent every goddamn thing about this person.
What the f*ck happened?
Resentment is that bitter anger and nagging annoyance caused by feeling as if we have been treated unfairly.
Once resentment sets in, it’s really hard to recover from it.
Most of the time, it’s not one thing that brings on that feeling of resentment but a million little things that build over time. It was all those times they didn’t help out around the house. When we had to do all the holiday shopping on our own then we were criticized for spending too much money. It was all those doctor appointments, school meetings, and kids’ activities we had to do by ourselves.
By the time we notice resentment, it is already too late.
It comes out of nowhere. It creeps in when we’re not paying attention. It’s something we never expected. And yet, it was developing throughout the entire relationship. It started from the very beginning. We just never saw it.
Resentment is the silent killer in relationships.
It was building every time we kept something in about what we didn’t like, what we needed, and what we expected. We hid our feelings so we won’t bother the other person. We kept our mouths shut in order not to cause unnecessary fights. We never voiced our concerns so we wouldn’t sound like a nag. And that is when resentment snuck in and began developing.
It set up a camp inside us and grew with each unsaid word and every disappointment. It was silently killing our relationship.
We were happy one moment, then bam! Resentment is the only emotion bursting into our every thought.
Resentment brings on feelings of anger and sadness. It causes us to do such spiteful things. We become mean and nasty. It’s f*cking ugly. And it’s an awful feeling.
How do we avoid this from happening in our relationship?
We prepare for it. We go into our relationship well aware of the dangerous conditions of resentment. We pull out our essential tools, in the beginning, to get us through the potential storm.
This is how we prepare to avoid resentment:
It can’t always be our way or no way. Both sides need to learn how to give and take in a relationship. We need to be open to conceding on some issues and accepting of the compromise.
Resentment has no shot of evolving when we are open to compromise.
Communication. Communication. Communication. Need I say more? Communication is a key factor to success in any relationship. The more open we are with each other, the better chance we have to work out any potential resentment that may begin.
3. Making decisions together
We have to go into a relationship like a partnership. If we owned a business with someone, we’d never even think about making any decisions without consulting with our business partner.
The same should be considered with our lover. This relationship is a partnership. We should discuss and decide early on the rules for this relationship. If we are making decisions together, we are avoiding any chance of resentment sneaking in because we are making choices together about our lives.
4. Being fair
Fairness is important as it opens the door for all parties to participate equally in each other’s lives. We are not the only ones in this relationship. Everyone has the right to feel, have an opinion, and expect things.
5. Opening our hearts to each other with fairness, kindness, and respect
Resentment doesn’t have a chance of invading our relationships when our hearts are filled with fairness.
6. Encouraging each other
We chose this human to be our person. We are not here to compete against them, fight with them, or put them down. We need to encourage each other in every aspect of our lives. Be there for each other when things are good. Hold each other when things get hard. Tell each other how amazing and wonderful they are. Tell each other they got it, and if not, we are by their side no matter what happens. Tell them they are amazing.
Whether they are a partner, lover, or parent, just encourage them.
Resentment has a hard time forming when we are busy showing loving encouragement toward each other.
As long as we work to keep resentment out, we just might survive it.
The thing about resentment is, it’s not so easy to ignore. If ignored, it will fester and one day explode.
We need to address it or it will get worse. The anger we feel will stay with us and consume other areas of our lives. We may hurt our loved ones. We may isolate ourselves from our friends and family. It can lead to directing our anger toward others.
It’s not healthy to feel resentful. We need to get rid of it.
We need to release resentment in order to move on and away from it.
And it begins with forgiveness. It’s the only way to attempt to move past resentment. If we can’t forgive, we must consider why it’s difficult to forgive. We might need time on our own to learn how to forgive.
We can use self-compassion. We can forgive ourselves for feeling resentment. We both had a part in getting us to this point.
We can try empathy. If we can understand how the other person feels, it can help us feel what they are feeling, while understanding that they are hurting too. It can open the door to begin the forgiveness process.
We can lean into gratitude. It’s normal to get caught up in all the negativity in the relationship. We can bring more happiness and positivity into our relationship by focusing on the things that are going right.
We can remember why we fell in love in the first place. This person has a piece of our heart. There is a reason we fell in love with this person. Falling in love isn’t easy. This person had something special that captured our hearts.
Sometimes that person is worth fighting for. Other times, it’s time to walk away. It’s our call. We are the only ones to make that decision. We are the only ones who truly knew what it felt like to be in that relationship.
But we must never live life feeling resentful. Forgiveness will enhance our lives.
Forgiveness will set us free.