When a relationship is not going well, it’s time to determine how to take care of yourself. Disappointment is one of the most common feelings people who are having difficulty with a friendship or romantic partnership experience. Don’t feel alone: Lesbians in same-sex relationships experience many of the same stresses and face many of the same issues as women in opposite-sex couples. Here are five steps you can take to start to feel like your normal self again.
Step 1: If You Think It Will Help, Discuss the Problem With the Other Person
First, make sure the other person is in the mood to have a lengthy conversation and listen. Make sure you’re in that place as well. Make sure you don’t have anything scheduled right before or after you need to talk. This will take the pressure off.
Step 2: Give It Time
During a difficult conversation, you and the other person may feel frustrated, tired, angry, upset, jealous and other negative emotions. After you’ve talked out the problem, give yourself some space. Know that as you grow as a couple, you may need more time to recover rather than less. Many lesbian couples report fighting more when they are well into a relationship rather than at the start of the relationship. Also, as more lesbian couples are getting married and raising children together, there are more problems to solve.
Step 3: Avoid Setting Yourself Up for Failure
Do not put pressure on the other person to perform as you expect them to right away. On the other hand, don’t give them so much time that you become afraid you’ll never hear from them again. If you let disappointment run unchecked, it can transform into hurt and anger.
Step 4: Give the Other Person an Easy Chance to Prove Themselves
Give the other person a small step that they can take to start earning your trust again. For example, if your girlfriend has criticized your career, tell her something that you did with your job that was positive. See if she compliments you or says something negative.
Step 5: Let Go
If what you’re doing isn’t working, know that it’s time for the other person to try and make it work. It is not your job to do all of the work. After taking steps one through four, think of talking about the issue with a close friend or family member. Then evaluate whether the relationship with the person who has disappointed you is worth keeping.