Saving those who wander can lead you astray.

Relationships are wonderful things that can give us more happiness than we can even begin to imagine. They give us companionship, love, nurture, sex, and confidence. But what they can’t give us is direction. Having had my fair share of relationships, I have realised that my darkest thoughts about relationships were true and my fantasies were just that, fantasies.

Everyone’s responsible for their own destiny. No matter how much you love another person, you can’t – and shouldn’t – change that. So, when you’re in a relationship and your partner constantly complains about their job, their life, their happiness, and nothing you say or do makes them change their attitude or their reality, then know that it’s not your fault. It is not your responsibility to get them to act.

Relationships don’t work in the same way banks do, and, first of all, you are not a bank. Nothing hurts a relationship more than one side feeling like others owe them something, or the other side feeling indebted. It’s important to remember that whether it’s respect, love or gratitude, you only get it back when the other person believes they should give it to you. Not because you deserve it. Therefore, when you feel like you’re not getting what you need or deserve, don’t try changing the other person. Instead, ask yourself: Can I live happily with what this person gives me in return? The answer is your key to the way your relationship will develop.

Even if you manage to temporarily guide them, they will always get lost again. People are where they are in life because of past events that shaped their worldview. You may be able to change their mind about some of it, but they need to be the ones to change the rest. So, don’t exhaust yourself trying to make someone believe they are worthy of love, or that they are not scared of commitment. Instead, make sure you are not lost yourself.

Love is not enough. When someone is hurt or damaged, it takes more than love to fix them. It’s a scary world out there for all of us; and for some it’s been scarier and left more scars. And the only way they can be saved is if they save themselves.

Still, you know, there is hope for all of us! Each relationship teaches us something new. The one with my ex-husband taught me the importance of getting the moisture out of aubergines before cooking them, and that I shouldn’t accept emotional abuse. The one with my last partner taught me that I didn’t enjoy playing footsies anymore and that some scars are too deep to ever heal.

So be kind to yourself and others by understanding the boundaries of how much you can do.

Do you agree with Evelyn?

Let us know in the comments section below.