Why do women settle for frogs?

Frog PrinceHow many frogs have you kissed in your lifetime?  Mario and I have a joke that it took me kissing over 100 frogs to find him.  There’s nothing wrong with kissing frogs, but why do women stay in mediocre or even abusive relationships?  Why do we settle for so much less than we deserve?

Times are changing but it wasn’t that long ago when women were taught to be subservient to men.  We were expected to cater to a man’s needs in the kitchen, living room, and bedroom.  Even though women have elevated their status in society, this acquiescent behavior extends to the boardroom, even today, as we still aren’t earning equal pay for equal work.

We were also taught not to speak up to our parents; therefore, many of us don’t have a voice in relationships because we are often dating a person who reminds us of one parent or the other. If a man speaks up for himself he’s considered confident.  If a woman asserts her position she’s a Bitch.  Isn’t it interesting however, that many men will not assert themselves in a relationship, but will make the situation so terrible that women’s hands are forced to do the dirty work? Even if a man is making our lives miserable, many of us still stay in the relationship, why is that?

I believe there are many possible reasons we subject ourselves to relationship torture:

  • We feel it’s normal because the experience is so similar to what our childhood looked like.
  • We have a low sense of self-worth, we’re still seeking our parent’s approval, and we have substituted seeking that approval from our mate.  Therefore, we do things we wouldn’t normally do for anyone else, just for a pat on the head. (Messed up isn’t it?)
  • Many women have experienced severe emotional and/or physical trauma growing up, and they carry that fear into their relationships because their undeveloped child mind couldn’t properly process the feelings. As a result, they are left emotionally stunted at whatever age they experienced the trauma.  Sadly, this can extend over generations where parents abuse children who become parents who continue to abuse children.
  • Most of us did not have solid relationships to model.  Thus we create false beliefs about people, love, and relationships that perpetuate drama, poor communication, and unhealthy behavior.
  • Coming together as a family unit and community is a biologic need; yet many of us take the fear of being alone too far, and seek companionship at all costs.  Sometimes at the expense of our health or even our lives.
  • We were taught ways of acting in relationship from our parents, friends, celebrities, etc.  Either because of the teaching we were directly exposed to or because of a way we thought we wanted to act.  If this teaching came from a dysfunctional source, then we could have unknowingly adopted dysfunctional behavior.
  • Many women stay for financial reasons because they aren’t able to work – either because they want to raise their kids first hand, or because of a controlling spouse/significant other.  They can’t leave because they are financially dependent.  A woman should always have some source of funds that are hers alone.  She should always have a nest egg stashed to leave if she needs to.
  • Finally, some of us stay because it’s a compulsion.  Either defying what we know we should do; or some other factor about the relationship makes it irresistible like a drug, or person who’s overweight and can’t stop eating the wrong foods.  You cannot control yourself until the power to change is greater than the hold the person has over you.

Now that we know why we get ourselves into these awful pickles, how do you tell if you’re in a relationship that’s not for your highest good right now?  It’s time to take an honest assessment of your situation.  If you’re not ready to look at your relationship this minute, that’s okay, save this article for later when you may have more courage.

I know it’s challenging to face up to what could be many years of bad choices.  But you cannot beat yourself up over it.  You’ll want to accept the fact that you have grown and that you aren’t the person you once were.  Because you know better now, you are able to do better.   And every relationship served your development in some way.  They all had a purpose, but it might be time that this relationship’s purpose is over.  Read on to find out if any of these apply to you.

  • Think of things you absolutely LOVE to do that you don’t do anymore because your partner doesn’t want to do them with you.
  • Do you experience unhealthy jealousy of each other?  An example of healthy jealousy is when your ears and eyes perk up when a woman is giving your man too much attention, you talk about it calmly, he reassures you of his love and fidelity for you and the topic is over.

Unhealthy jealousy is when either one of you sees situations that don’t exist, there is a loud rage filled argument over the matter, usually one person doesn’t believe the other, a feeling of betrayal and loss of trust pervades the next several days, weeks, or months, and the matter is never resolved, and continually crops up.

  • Is there too much indifference on your part or his?  That usually indicates that the feelings in the relationship are lopsided.  He likes you more than you like him or vice versa.  Maybe you don’t want to leave because you don’t want to be alone, or maybe he tolerates you so he can continue to get laid, or out of his own fears of being alone.
  • You change elements of your behavior to accommodate him, yet he doesn’t compromise on anything you want him to do for you.  What’s good for the goose is not good for the gander.  Maybe it’s okay for him to have a female friend, but you’re not allowed to have male friends.  Or you give up your girl’s night out to watch Monday night football with him, but he wants you home alone on Thursday while he goes out to watch the game with the guys.
  • Verbal Abuse can be as simple and insidious as subtly derogatory banter, such as, “What did you do that for, dumb ass.” Or as awful as public displays of shame and ridicule.  “Stop crying.  You’re embarrassing me.  Honestly, I can’t take you anywhere without you getting all bat shit crazy.  When are you going to grow up?”
  • Physical Abuse could also be a factor.  We say to ourselves we would never tolerate anyone hitting us, but what about a slap on the face?  Or your arm twisted behind your back, under the guise of play?  Haven’t we all found ourselves accepting a situation and rationalizing it away at some point in our lives?  Any form of physical contact that causes pain is unacceptable, even if it’s during sex.  If you say you don’t like it, ask him to stop, and he doesn’t – it’s abuse.
  • If a casual acquaintance treated you this way would you put up with it?  So, why are you willing to tolerate that behavior from someone who is supposed to love you?
  • Would you leave if you had the money?

Okay, so you’ve come to realize that you stay in relationships longer than you should, and you recognize the reason you should leave.  Or you could be saying to yourself, “He doesn’t hit me, but he doesn’t jazz me either.  Everything’s relatively good – why would I want to stir the pot?”  You wouldn’t be reading this right now if there weren’t a part of you that is dissatisfied.  He may be most of what you’re looking for, but he’s not everything you’re looking for.  He’s not your dream guy.

If you bought a beautiful new home with an amazing view, and massively comfortable Master suite, that came exquisitely furnished with everything just as you like it, would you choose to only live in the laundry room?  That’s what you’re doing when you choose to settle for someone who’s just “Okay”.  You deserve to have everything you’re looking for in your man (and your life for that matter) – you just don’t believe you do.  You’re afraid you won’t do better, that no-one could possibly love you, that you’re damaged goods, who are you to ask for so much, and on and on.

finding-mr_right_Well, none of those stories are true.  You deserve to have a high caliber man who loves and adores you as much as you love and adore him because you are perfect exactly as you are, and you are worth it to ask for and receive exactly what you want.  You just have to change those stories you’ve been telling yourself all these years.  You’ll want to change your beliefs about yourself, love, and relationships.  You’ll keep working on yourself until you do believe you can have what you want.  And in the meantime, you’ll work on gaining the courage to end this less than adequate relationship you’ve been putting up with for…how long?

  • You can begin to wean yourself, by choosing to do things you like to do whether your man wants to do them with you or not.  You’ll begin spending less time with him each day and focus on things that interest you, even if you’re in the house at the same time.
  • You’ll begin to lovingly detach from other mutual relationships or activities you used to do together.  You’ll remain authentic and say if questioned, that you’d really just rather do X instead of Y.  You don’t need to explain why.
  • If it’s easy to end the relationship you will.  Then, you’ll practice going out with other men, but not stay too long, until you have that feeling about your man when he comes along, because you will absolutely know that he’s the one.  Give yourself an initial cutoff of two dates if there’s no connection and three months maximum if he’s worth getting to know better.  If you wouldn’t marry him, feel proud to introduce him to your family and feel awesome about living with him forever – then he’s not a keeper.
  • You could end your existing relationship immediately and lovingly.  When my ex-fiancé and I broke up, it was like a divorce, and I said to him, “we loved each other.  We don’t have to do this like everyone else.  We can break up with love and not have it be a battle.”  We did exactly that and stayed friends for a little while.  However, as soon as my man showed up for me I didn’t communicate with my ex anymore out of respect for Mario because there really was no reason to anymore.
  • If money is your only obstacle, then open a savings account and save some money each week out of the grocery money if you have to.  You are a woman, you are smart, clever, and a creative thinker, you will find a way for what you want if you want it badly enough.  We always find a way, don’t we?

You can’t change anyone else, you can only change yourself.  So please don’t kid yourself that he will change and it could work out.  If there are things wrong that make this relationship inadequate that will always be the case.  Dr. Phil says, “The best indicator of future behavior is past behavior.”  Do yourself a favor and stop staying with these frogs.  Stop selling yourself short.  Stop settling for less. Work on changing you.  Unbalanced, unhealthy energy cannot exist in the same space as balanced, healthy energy.  Don’t you want to be balanced and healthy in your mind, body, and relationships?

You attract EVERYTHING in your life to you.  Your life has been created by you.  If you don’t like it you get to change it by changing just ONE THOUGHT and FEELING you have today.  Each day a new better thought and feeling will shift the energy in your world to help you attract better experiences and ultimately a much better life.  Believe you deserve to have what you want in your life and all your relationships.

If you need any help I’m here for you.  I believe you are beautiful.  I believe you are perfect exactly as you are.  And I believe that you deserve more than you are asking for right now.  Be bold and ask for more than you think you deserve.  Ask for the best life has to offer, risk allowing yourself to receive it, and see if good things don’t start to come your way.  In the words of Abraham Hicks, “There is great love here for you.”  You deserve to experience it, as I have.  I want that for you.