by Tiffany Schupanitz, LMHC
Have you found yourself in a relationship where one day your partner is sending you all the right signals and communication? He is flirty and interested in learning about you. He says all the right things to increase attraction. Then, out of the blue, the communication and attention stops. You find yourself wondering what you might have done or said that would cause the loss of attraction. When you are ready to give up after the last unanswered text, he suddenly resurfaces as though nothing has happened. This is a very common trend in the dating world that contributes to the feeling that you are on an emotional rollercoaster.
If this is a pattern that you have started to recognize that has begun to cause anxiety, pain, and stress, then it is never to late to set clear boundaries. A relationship should encourage feelings of stability and security. This requires consistent communication. It is important to set the expectation of what consistent communication looks like for you in a relationship. Relationships should also include mutual effort. If one partner is overextending and doing more work, then it can lead to feelings of resentment and bitterness toward the other partner. It is not either partner’s responsibility to manage the other party’s emotions. Self-care and firm boundaries around this are important.
If this relationship is causing pain and stress, then it may be time to turn inward to explore what is keeping you engaged in this behavior and if this is a relationship you want to pursue. The expectation that the other person is going to change is unrealistic, so it may be time to set boundaries and focus on what you can change to change the cycle. This may cause some fear that the relationship will end, but it may be possible that this will teach what you are truly looking for in a relationship. Therapists are available via telehealth and in person sessions to help navigate through relationship struggles.
I write articles based on my experience as a therapist or a training or conference attendee. Many of these articles are written by others who are experts in their field and I share their information as resources for others.