18 Sep Making tough relationship decisions

1504087870_beaa7851b2_b_fork-in-pathBeing stuck.

We’ve all been there. Standing at a fork in the road. We’re facing two choices.

And we have to choose one over the other.

This is easy enough when the road is, well, literally, a path or track. We peer down one side as far as we can see. We walk a few steps forward, to get a better sense of what lies ahead. Then we do the same on the other side. Sooner or later we figure out that one option looks preferable to the other, and off we go.

But what if regardless of how much looking, we still can’t decide which path is the best way forward?

“Should I stay?” or “Should I go?” is obviously one of the biggest forks in the relationship road that anyone will face in their lifetime.

And if that’s not hard enough, we usually arrive at this place carrying a huge backpack jammed full with our own doubts, insecurities, and fears…

The stakes are super high. There may be others involved. Businesses. Property.

We can’t get it wrong.

It’s what happens next that’s interesting.

Some couples choose not to choose…

By NOT choosing, the underlying premise is that something or someone will come along to make the decision for us. But too often this (non) choice paves the way to even more problems.

These may be an affair, an illness, job changes or relocations, or simply an acceleration of conflict and tension that builds to an inevitable breaking point and destroys whatever mutual love and respect that could have been part of the journey (on either path) moving forward.

Other couples choose to choose… then get stuck…

With these really tough relationship decisions, sometimes the clarity doesn’t come.

Things seem clear and then the next moment they don’t.

It’s like there’s a massive landslide obstructing the path ahead.

Often, “stuckness” like this arises from an unconscious (and unreasonable) belief that one path must be truly the “right” one and the other path “wrong”…

We believe that we must choose the “right” path, or not choose at all.

But relationships are complicated. And very rarely “black” or “white”…

Would it be more reasonable to accept that both paths promise pitfalls, and that both paths promise rewards?

Making difficult relationship decisions is often about accepting that most likely, a perfect decision (and by perfect I mean one that isn’t going to hurt) doesn’t exist.

Knowing as much as we can about the paths we’re facing, knowing what “baggage” we bring along on the ride, and most importantly, having a very clear sense of where we aspire to end up, can help us make the best possible relationship decisions.

It pays to remember that whichever path we choose, the promise of positive change is always just ahead.

Just up that big hill maybe. Just a little bit further…

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