Friendly reminder that relationships, whether romantic, familial, or platonic deserve to be tended to with effort, consistency, balance, reciprocity, and respect.
Note: You are not “too much”. It’s okay to stand up for yourself. Accept only what you deserve.
Side Note: Having needs doesn’t mean you are “needy.” Understand the work you need to do within yourself to grow in self-awareness. Know the difference between what you need from yourself and what healthy balanced relationships looks like for you.
Not everyone you meet will be apart of your story. Not everyone you know will remain in your story. The ones that stay, return, or want to make the relationship work regardless of the challenges and differences will be well worth the effort.
Have the conversations that need to be had with the people you love. Create solid and supportive relationships with the people you care most about. It’s time to speak up. Needs don’t make you needy. Triggers don’t make you weak. Vulnerability doesn’t make you any less of a person. Build the healthy bonds you deserve.
So this post appeared on my Facebook feed and allowed me to reflect on the previous conversations I’ve had with my therapist. Conversations centered around relationship-building, relationship maintenance, and relationship termination. Relationship in this sense is defined by any bond I make with who I’ve come to encounter.
Relationships (whether platonic or romantic) are complex and whether we choose to remain in such interactions with others is what we have control over. We have control over who we surround ourselves with.
Still, while in my current frustrations, I’ve realized my habit of “holding space” although torn between whether im valued or thus appreciated in such bonds. When do I draw a line between moving past and holding space? In what ways can I hold space while also ensuring my needs are met and I feel the relationship is benefiting both parties?
Holding space is a form of love and acceptance. And while this year, in particular, has shown me my own strength in my “space holding” capacities, I do value this part of me. I hold space because I love my friends, family (actual, internet, from school or in other instances) and I choose to make room for them. Make room in how I love and support those who’ve shown me vulnerable parts of them.
And yes. Making space isn’t easy as everyone is different and I can’t control others’ “space holding” capacities, only my own. To become frustrated and rash is how I’ve come to include my own needs and put myself in the equation too. Holding space doesn’t mean I won’t get frustrated, triggered, or annoyed. Neither does it mean I’ll abandon myself in pursuit of others’ needs, but I still will make space as well as hold space.
To the people that I love and cherish, there is always space for you. I love you and will always have space in my love for you. If we’ve fallen out or hurt one another in some ways I still have space and I’m rooting for you wherever you are. If we’ve just got to meet one another and getting to know the complexities of one another’s character, my space is here and isn’t going anywhere. And as I hold space for others, my only desire is that others will also hold a space for me.
“Have you ever wanted to be taller? Or maybe felt less than because your grades weren’t the best in the class? Ever felt yourself changing in ways that weren’t really like you to fit into a crowd? Comparing ourselves to others and stunting our sense of self-worth to be more like the people around us harms our views of who we are. The more we compare and strive to be what we are not, the more we lose what we are and who we want to become.
How do we shift comparing ourselves to others to accepting and growing in self-love?”
“A gratitude list is a list of things, places, people, situations, or traits about ourselves that we are grateful for. Creating a gratitude list helps us to reflect and think through what’s good about our experiences and life overall. Building a habit of gratitude increases our awareness, knowledge, and point of contact when we find ourselves comparing our lives with others.”
When something or someone is causing you pain ask yourself, is this pain teaching me anything or opening up my perspective to ensure and guarantee my growth? In times where toxicity is present but not always apparent, you must determine whether that pain is necessary or toxic.
In terms of building relationships whether romantic, familial, or platonic, the occurrence of issues or disagreement is inevitable. When disagreements turn into manipulation, unnecessary pain, purposeful lack of communication, immaturity, lack of accountability, or one posing as “the parent” if not one is where a line must be drawn.
Remaining in toxic relationships or spaces do not determine your worthiness as a person. Your worth is not manifested by how much pain you can endure as you remain in toxic situations. Loyalty should not be painful. There is no need to wait around and stunt your growth for someone/something else. While pain is a teacher and in specific situations teaches you to become better, in others will cause trauma.
Always put your well being first before anything. If you find you are not benefiting from a relationship, space, or situation, relieve yourself of that pain