It’s coming up to my fifth anniversary with my boyfriend, Gary; and in that time I feel like I’ve learned a lot about myself, him, our relationship, and relationships in general to be honest.
I had my first ‘proper’ boyfriend when I was 12 years old, and since then I basically spent the next 10 years with boyfriends. I was that girl that never stayed single more than a month or so really. When I was around 21 I broke up with a long term boyfriend (of three years), and had about 3 months single. Then I had another serious relationship with someone. After that one ended I ended up being single for about a year, before meeting Gary. I think that year was my longest period so far being single, and that was now five years ago. It’s fair to say I feel much more confident talking about relationships, than single life. I’d be hopeless as a single pringle, probably.
Today I wanted to share some little pearls of wisdom with you guys that I’ve picked up on my way. Obviously I can only speak about my own experiences, and everyone learns different lessons throughout their life. However I got such lovely messages from other dating and relationship posts, such as 5 Tips For Long Distance Relationships and 8 Things I Do and Don’t Miss About Dating – that I thought I’d try make relationships a more regular theme on my blog. I’m really excited about this, and hope you are too!
Anyway, here are the top five things I’ve learned about relationships…
1. Each one will change you.
There’s no telling how. It may be very small changes, or life changing ones, but one thing’s for sure; each new relationship gives you a new unique experience with someone that will tweak you. Some relationships have helped me grow, and made me realise what I truly need from a partner. Which means even the bad relationships have helped! I may have made plenty of mistakes, but I didn’t make the same mistake twice. I grew, with each person, and I’m thankful for that. One person changed how I see myself and my own confidence, another made me more independent. And one person simply changed my view on Harry Potter! (I never read it growing up, someone made me finally read them and I was so thankful!).
2. There will always be one really bad one.
There’s a bad egg within everything, unfortunately. And I feel like we’re all destined to have that one, awful fucker who ruins us for a bit. If you haven’t had this yet – I’m so glad for you. But notice I used the word ‘yet’? Terribly cynical of me, sorry. I hope I’m wrong, but it seems to me like we all get one. That’s okay though, those bastards really do make you stronger, I promise. You’ll go through hell, or it’ll feel like your heart truly is ripping to pieces, but you’ll be yourself again eventually. Just make sure you show them what a mistake it was to cross you like that, yeah?…
3. There’s always that ‘one who got away’.
Truth is it might not have worked out anyway, it may have ended awfully (see number 2); but there’s always one quick/never really happened sort of relationship that you would have liked to see go further. Whatever stopped it in it’s tracks, it happened when you still thought the sun shone out this person’s bum, and you can’t help but wonder about them from time to time.
4. Talking can solve a million problems.
Sounds obvious, right? However there are certain things in relationships that you may hold back from saying, whether it’s in a brand new relationship, or a five year strong one. In a new one, you may be trying to act cool and don’t really want to tell your new BAE that it actually feels a bit crap that they don’t text you for days, even though you can see they’ve read your message. In a long term relationship, you might not want to tell your partner that you’re feeling a little neglected, or bored. But NOT saying anything will mean this problem doesn’t go away, and will probably get worse. I say bite the bullet, and talk about how you’re feeling. The worst that can happen is that they don’t agree, understand, or change how you need them to. But in that case, you’ll at least have an answer, you’ll know the cards that are dealt to you, and you can make an informed decision about how to deal with it. But say nothing and hope things will turn out okay anyway? It’s not fair on either of you.
5. No two are the same.
Whether you’re comparing your relationship with an old one you had, or with your friends current relationships; stop it now! No two people are ever exactly the same which means no relationship is ever exactly the same (hence why you should take this list with a pinch of salt!). What works for one person may not work for you, and that’s alright! Work out what you need, what makes you happy, and respect that the other person in your relationship will need to do this too.
I probably have millions of other little things I’ve learned about relationships, and myself in them. I hope you enjoyed these ones I mentioned today though, as I consider them probably my most important lessons I’ve learned. This post is in collaboration with Ukrainian Dating, which got me thinking about my dating experiences. Perhaps soon I’ll share my funniest/worst dates I’ve ever had? Watch this space!
Let me know if you guys have learned anything from your own experiences!
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