We all think we are unique until we find people who are just like us. These people may not be identical to us, but they’re similar enough for us to connect with them. They make our lives make a bit more sense; they make us feel as though we are not alone. We love and fear the same things as them, our heartbeats quicken during the same moments and the burdens we have carried on our backs suddenly become lighter because now we can share them. These people become our lovers; these people become our friends.
Most relationships do not remain as beautiful as they are when they begin. I believe that in all relationships there are ups and downs and true connections can only be built in the furnace; it is there that we discover our strength. However, when you spend too much time in the furnace, fighting, grieving and hurting, you have every right to question whether it’s time to walk away. A few weeks ago I wrote about my decision to fight for my friendships and in the last paragraph I wrote that there was indeed a time to walk away. A close friend of mine read the piece and asked, ‘so how do you know when it’s time to let go?’ I sent her multiple Facebook messages and then thought, ‘heck, why don’t I turn this into a blogpost?’ So here I am, blogging a new list.
Now, now, now, before you get excited (we all love lists) I want you to know that this list has been informed by my
limited life experiences. I’ve been accused of some of the below (some honesty for ya!) and I’ve experienced some of them also. BTW: please don’t finish reading this list and immediately start burning bridges because you agree with every single point. If you do have someone in mind before AND after you’ve read the post, seek God, spend time praying for him or her, for yourself and about the situation, then make a decision.
Also: This is just my opinion.
OKAY. LET’S GO.
1) When you prefer the memories you share to the person standing in front of you.
If you prefer how they used to treat to how they currently treat you, there may be a problem. You are holding onto the past.
2) When you find yourself constantly altering yourself to suit their needs.
Now, I’m all for compromise. Relationships flourish when both parties alter themselves just a little bit. However, if you’re walking on eggshells around them, and constantly watching what you say just in case it rubs them the wrong way, you may have a problem. You shouldn’t be staying silent because you want to avoid an argument.
3) When their words hurt you more than they heal you.
Words are powerful:
The tongue can bring death or life those who love to talk will reap the consequences.
If their words make you wince and die a little, if they insult you more than they heal you, if they push you down to the point that you don’t feel as though you can’t stand, it might be time to put on your running shoes.
4)You feel inferior around them
Ain’t nobody got time for that.
5) When spending time with them becomes a painful chore.
Friendships should be enjoyed. If you walk away from said person feeling drained, they have probably withdrawn more from you than they have deposited. Under special circumstances (heartbreak, bereavement, loss of employment, general life horrible stuff) this is fine. It is not, however, the norm. Friendships should be fun, not arduous work.
6) If they don’t ask you how you are but insist on speaking about themselves for hours on end.
This one in itself isn’t really a deal breaker but I want you to know that you matter. How you feel matters. Your day: matters. Your life: matters. Even though someone forgetting to ask how you are may seem unimportant, it often shows a lack of care and consideration. WARNING SIGN.
7) Everyone keeps telling you to walk away
If everyone around you is saying the same thing, it just might be true. Stop ignoring the voice in your head AND the voices of your loved ones. Take a step back and evaluate the situation.
8) If you’ve spoken to them about their flaws and they refuse to take the constructive criticism on board.
If someone is hurting you and you haven’t spoken up about it, you are partly to blame (sorry, not sorry). Is the person a mind-reader? It is a completely different story if you have sat them down, voiced your concerns and they have carried on treating you in the same manner. If you haven’t given them the opportunity to change, don’t walk away so hastily. A conversation could be the difference.
9) If you’re hoping they’ll one day wake up a changed being, ready to love you in the way that you deserve.
This one is sad because your relationship hinges on a moment that may never happen. The ‘one day’ you are hoping for may never come. This just might be it
(this post is becoming such a downer). There are many people in the world that will love you right now, just as you are.
10) *insert YOUR reason here*
As you were reading this, someone sprang to mind, right? If I’ve missed it in the above, still evaluate that individual’s presence in your life. I think a part of us always knows when someone may not be good for us, even if we aren’t ready to fully accept it.
Every so often, the people we love the most have to become the memories we shared together. It’s taken a long time but I have finally accepted that forgiving someone does not necessarily mean that the relationship remains the same. While forgiving people is mandatory (Matthew 6:15), staying in toxic relationships is not. Sometimes we have to walk away and love people from afar. It doesn’t mean that we love them any less and it doesn’t make what we shared with them less special; it just means that we no longer walk with them. And that’s okay. It really, really is. It’s okay to journey without them. It’s okay to thank them for the lessons. It’s okay to pray for them. It’s okay to look ahead armed experience and wisdom. It’s okay to let them go.
Thanks for reading maaaan.