It's that unsettling feeling in your stomach, where you know you want somebody, but you don't want just anybody, conflicting right? He or She may be handsome or beautiful, they at least have a consistent job, and you have a good time with them. But we all know deep down that's NOT enough if you know you are settling for less. But sadly we stick around and play it safe with mediocrity because deep down we wonder if that certain person or what our heart desires will ever really happen. So we wait and we stay with the person, hoping to maybe shape or mold them into the person we desire to be with, knowing that deep down you two are in different places and are just not a good fit for each other. Let me give you a few examples of this scenario.
The "When the time is right guy" and the "The girl who sees the potential in everyone aka Ms.Too Nice"
He continuously says he's just waiting for the right time to make you his woman, and that he's taking things slow to make sure things are right, because he's been in bad relationships before. He asks you out last minute, unless you initiate a date which is usually a concert or something that requires tickets so he has to commit right then and there. If your friends or family ask about him, you constantly find yourself making the little things he does sound so amazing and sweet and you down play or hold back part of the truth on the all the real issues. You clear your schedule for the weekend and find an outfit just in case he contacts you to go out or for him to come over. Then you get disappointed when it never happens and tell yourself that it's cool because you guys didn't have anything planned and you know he's probably busy. Whenever you ask him where you guys are and where does he see things going, he says that ya'll are great friends and he likes how things are going so things continue how they are. You convince yourself that you're rushing and he's right, so you tell yourself its okay and that you two are on the same page. As much as it hurts, you are wrong, wrong, wrong. Stop searching for the stories of the one girl who waited for the guy and he became everything she wanted and more, because those situations are a rare exception to the rule and usually 100% of the time what the story does not mention is that she or he still settled in one area or another.
The "Opportunist" and the "Girl/Guy with Low self-esteem"
He/She continuously tells you how much they adore you when you are doing something for them. You find yourself always wanting to get them cute little gifts or take them out, but sooner or later you see that it isn't reciprocated. Or you see that when you can't do anything monetary for them, they aren't available. You know deep down you probably aren't the only person who has their attention and you can feel sometimes that they are a little distant. But you tell yourself that it's better to be with them than to be with no one, plus you have some good memories, usually the ones where you have funded the activity, so you stay. And there are moments where it even feels real, because they verbally tell you how much you mean to them, which is usually when they begin to feel bad because deep down they know they aren't really in it for the long haul with you so they try to make themselves really see you as more and try to like you more, when truly they don't. Both parties have low self-esteem, they just use different methods to soothe or try to fill the void. One believes that maybe if I make their dreams come true by buying them things and spoiling them, they will feel special and in return love me, and then I'll also feel special and worth it. The other believes, I must be special because they give me anything I want, but deep down that doesn't truly satisfy you. Both are settling, because they believe thats probably as good as it's going to get.
The two things that you must know if you are in this situation:
1. The old, loud, screaming cliche that you constantly see on social media posts or hear from your friends is still brutally true. "If someone wants to spend time with you they will, no if, and, or buts about it. If they want to call or text you they will, if they want to make you their significant other they will. No one can stop a man/woman if they are truly determined to have someone or something." The only excuse that is acceptable is death in the family, recently divorced/widowed because those things do take a little more patience, or complicated situations that include children, such as a sick child who requires a lot of a parents time. Other than that, Sis..Bro...wake up, just as much as you want to talk to them, see them, or pursue them it should always, always, always be mutual. From experience I know that deep down you know it doesn't feel good and you know that tiny voice in the back of your head is right.
2. Love yourself and Love others, but to love others as yourself, you must first Love yourself! About 9 out 10 situations like this is because one person lacks the self-esteem or confidence to believe they deserve better than what they are receiving. But to not only realize you deserve better, but to act on it, requires you to come face to face with the truth and accept it. Then take the steps necessary to move forward. No it's not as easy as it sounds, but if you never take the first step you will find yourself deeper entangled in a situation than necessary. GET OUT, RUN, before you find yourself settling even more. Fall in love with yourself, realize that the world has so much more to offer than just a relationship. A successful woman or man, is still successful with or without a relationship. A relationship should not define your success, because without it, you will believe that you are not worthy, when you are in fact more than worthy. Remember, its unsettling to settle for less...so don't.
You deserve someone who will put in just as much effort as you and genuinely wants to be with you. Point, Blank, Period. You shouldn't have to guess or wonder how someone feels about you, because their words and actions should express that. Be patient for what you want, because it will come, don't settle.
Clarissa C. Burton, M.S.W
Devoted to guiding others toward living a life they don't need a vacation from.