What one tolerates or doesn’t tolerate in a relationship is certainly up to that particular individual. Everyone has negotiables and non-negotiables. There are some issues I frequently see that are contributing to many women’s unhappiness.
I believe that due to double standards, sexism and other reasons, many women have had a tendency to be overly tolerant to mistreatment in relationships.Some of you know how much I emphasize the importance of a woman holding her man accountable.
I suggest not putting up with, or reinforcing and sustaining his mistreatment. As a woman, I also want to do my part, doing the right thing to contribute to a healthy relationship. It takes two to make it work. Listed below are some favorable circumstances that are absent from some relationships.
1.) Be faithful; no cheating.
This includes physical and emotional cheating. Any cheating. Maybe one or both partners is addicted to pornography also. Cheating is betrayal, it causes pain, anger, stress, possibly STDS and more.
2). Be honest.
Dishonesty is a big problem. Yes cheating is a form of dishonesty as well. Lies may happen, but they disrupt the trust. Trust is foundational. A woman should be honest and expect the same from her man.
3 ) Do not abuse and don’t tolerate abuse.
Abuse is physical, emotional, verbal abuse and more. This includes yelling, physical assaults, controlling behavior, name-calling, put-downs, mind-manipulations, gaslighting, etc.
4 ) Stick to core values and necessary boundaries.
Establish and make each other’s values and boundaries known before becoming seriously involved in a relationship.
This way each partner knows who they are dealing with and what they are getting into beforehand. This is fair and each partner can make their own decision accordingly.
It is not about being judgmental or overly picky. Either people mesh well together or they don’t. Some people don’t discuss necessary things first, and they become involved, driven by desperation, attraction and other motivators.
Then, they later realize their lack of compatibility. Ouch. In fact, each person can respect the other’s stances, even if they don’t agree with them. It is just that they may not be well-suited for each other.
5 ) Be responsible and pair up with someone else who is also responsible.
Some adults refuse to be responsible in life. Peter Pan Syndrome is real. If a partner is lazy, hates responsibility and accountability, that’s not going to work. Sure, adults can and should still have fun too! But they should act like adults.
The key word here is adults. A grown woman needs a grown man. A grown man needs a grown woman. Of course, growing is an ongoing process, because we all should continue improving as adults.
In the meantime, adults should at least be mature and progressed enough to live reasonably successful, well-functioned lives as they grow more.
Some women are known to basically carry their men around in their relationships, acting as their mothers. That is an exhausting and unhealthy dynamic for either partner to have to parent the other.
6 ) As a woman, don’t invest too quickly and deeply in a man before he has first invested consistently in you on that same level, or on an even higher level.
I have learned that a woman’s emotional intelligence and maturity can surpass or just be different than her man’s at any stage in life. Some women move at an accelerated pace when emotionally investing in a man. It is good to take time, slow down, observe and be patient.
I also realize that a man should pursue. As a woman, I will respond. Some women are much more invested in their man and in their relationship than the other way around. This will not bring happiness.
Women tend to be very intuitive and they can sense when something is off. In a situation like this, a woman may end up depressed and may try harder to win her partner over. She may convince herself he is as into her as she is into him. My fellow ladies and friends, it is his job to win the lady over if he feels she is the one he wants to invest in.
The lady should respond to his initiative. I know this is my perspective as a Christian and as an individual. It may not be popular opinion, but I believe it is right. Some women have tired of waiting for a man to ask them out. Some have become tired of the men that they are not interested in asking them out. So they step up and shoot their shot at a man they like.
However, God has set up such dynamics among humans and in the animal kingdom also with male pursuit and female response. I wrote a blog post about the importance of male pursuit and female response here.
We see Jesus pursuing the church. He initiated in laying His life down for us first, before we responded to Him. “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5: 8.
I think that one of the biggest mistakes some women have made is to allow the dynamics to be flipped. Many women have idolized relationships and men to the point where they forgot that they are to be pursued, wooed and won over.
They chased men. Standards dropped. Tolerance went up. They were desperate for men. This makes it easy on the men, but this is not a natural or healthy dynamic as I understand it.
Sure, it may be tough for a man to pursue a woman and risk rejection. However, it is also tough for a woman to wait for a man to pursue her and he might not pursue her, but another woman.
Although I don’t believe a woman should pursue a man, I think that it is perfectly all right and a good thing for her to be warm and welcoming toward him if she’s interested in him. This should hopefully help her to be approachable.
Risk is a part of the process. There is no reward without taking risk. A lot of men used to understand this. Some still do. Women should be sure to be kind and gracious in their responses, whether they are interested or not.
And the men should be respectful and not feel entitled. It is good for a man to understand that is simply not the woman for him and move on, if she isn’t interested. The right woman for him will say yes.
The easier route is not always the better route. It is easy for me to get upset with a man that I would like to pursue me, but he pursues the next woman.
Maybe she’s in better physical shape and better looking too! It is easy to feel sad, envious or even resentment. However, I should understand that he deserves to be with the woman of his choosing. He simply is not for me if he chooses someone else. Good for them.
7) I’m saving the best and most important for last… pray about it first. Keep God first before and after entering a relationship.
For those who are followers of Jesus Christ, we understand that we need to be equally yoked with a fellow believer in Christ (2 Corinthians 6: 14). We also understand that we are to keep God first and not have any other gods before Him.
If I’m not careful, my relationship can become an idol. My man can become an idol. Love can become an idol. Marriage or the idea of marriage and family can become an idol.
Instead, all that I do should be to glorify God. So even though I am imperfect, this is the motivation in my decisions and my life overall.
Used with permission from Petrina Ferguson.