Over the past 30 years, I’ve stood witness to both the most logical and asinine reasons behind couples breaking up; from cheating and loss of attraction to stank breath and height deprivation.
Just a few weeks ago, a friend of mine broke up with his girlfriend of two years. From the outside looking in, you would think that he was the one who had been dumped. He can’t stop thinking about her, can’t stop talking about her, but most surprisingly – can’t stop asking people if he made a mistake by leaving her.
At first I didn’t understand why he broke up with this amazing girl. Or how he could be so torn about a decision that he chose to make. So when I learned of the reason that drove him to his decision, my first though was… “that’s it?”
The two of them had such a calm and honest relationship; one that was built on a solid friendship. His girlfriend had proven herself to be loyal and we all know how hard loyalty is to come by. But after giving his reason a little more thought (and giving him the benefit of the doubt), I started to understand my friend’s perspective.
He broke up with his girlfriend because their values and priorities didn’t align. He wants a family one day and she’s not sure if she wants the same. He’s taking leaps toward being financially stable and she hasn’t even taken a step. He’s tired of waiting for her to reach her full potential and can therefore no longer see their long-term potential. At this point in their relationship, he wants her to contribute to his personal growth as much as he contributes to hers.
there are “plenty of fish out in the sea…but…how many of those are a good catch?
There’s no negating the validity behind his concerns. But in this day and age, a relationship inclusive of great communication, chemistry, friendship, trust and loyalty isn’t easy to come by. For this reason alone, I don’t know if I can view his decision as a smart one. And apparently he can’t either.
We hear all of the time that there are plenty of fish out in the sea and not to settle. But how many of those fish are a good catch? And how many if those fish will land on your hook? And most importantly, when is it settling vs. compromising?
I’m sure that my friend could find a different woman who wants kids the same as he does. But will he enjoy raising them with her? He can find another woman who is financially stable. But will she even want to spend her money the same way he does? He can find a woman who is sprinting to reach her full potential. But how will she feel about the speed of his own race? And yes, he can find a woman who contributes to his personal growth. But will he enjoy her presence enough to celebrate his successes with her? Now that he’s pulled the plug on his relationship, he’s starting to consider these things.
I would have given the relationship and my partner more time before calling it quits. What my friend’s girlfriend was missing, I feel could have been developed and inspired over time. But what she did offer was priceless and much harder to find.
Would you have extended it or ended it?
Sources and other media: eH avice