You might think that once you find your forever person and are in a long-term relationship, you’re no longer going to experience commitment issues or worries. But this isn’t true—you might still feel cold feet. Here’s why and how to deal.
It’s totally normal to worry about the future.
No matter how well you choose a life partner, you can never know exactly what might happen. Will they hurt you and destroy your life? Will they ghost you? Even when you try to predict their future behavior based on how they’ve acted in the past, it’s still no guarantee. I mean, what about those people who “snap,” or wake up one morning and completely out of the blue want to break up?
What if love isn’t enough?
Another common fear is that the relationship will tank despite your best efforts. Heck, it could happen that you and your partner both work hard to make the relationship work, but even with all the love in the world you still don’t make it. Divorce stats are scary but real. Again, it’s completely normal to worry about them and it doesn’t mean you’re afraid to commit just because you have these fears.
You might fear “forever.”
As wonderful as they are, the idea of soulmates and marriage can be incredibly scary. They’re huge deals, and it’s frightening to be in the position where you’re about to take such a big step forward. Anything that’s linked to “forever” can be terrifying. Imagine if you had to stay in your current career, house, or make do with your hairstyle until death? So what’s underlying that fear? Here’s where things really get interesting.
You miss the carefree days of the relationship.
Remember when you first got together with your partner? That rush of endorphins and seeing the world in new shades of color were invigorating! Now you’re dealing with real-life issues—moving in together, sharing the expenses, taking on huge decisions together, investing your heart and soul into a partnership… You might wish for some of that old carefree stuff. It’s normal, but…
Do you want this?
The danger of craving that freedom and carefree state is that over a period of time, it can start to wear you down. You might find yourself wishing you weren’t even in a relationship. Now, feeling a bit of jealousy when your best friends are hanging out and having girls’ night and you’re not invited because you’re taken is one thing that doesn’t have to point to commitment issues. But when you start wanting that single life so badly it’s making you restless, anxious, and depressed, then you’re dealing with a different animal.
So, what do you do?
The most important thing to do is analyze your feelings, instead of being afraid of them. At this point, they’re just feelings and they’re good or bad. But they’re trying to tell you something so try to understand what that is. The sooner you do that, the sooner you can realize what you’re dealing with. That’s the first and most important step.
It could be something serious.
You might be dealing with a serious case of the relationship chills that point to commitment issues. You might be dealing with fears that aren’t paranoid—maybe you genuinely have reasons not to trust your partner. Wow, that especially needs your attention ASAP.
Control the beast within.
Maybe the problem isn’t something that’s actually a red flag and that should make you want to head for the exit before taking the relationship to a more serious level. Maybe you need to stop sabotaging yourself. Yup, you might be the one standing in the way of feeling good about being in a LTR or making a big commitment to someone.
Hey, you’re only human.
Sometimes we sabotage ourselves when things are good or we just don’t appreciate them until we lose them. It’s the sad reality of human nature. However, it’s worth pointing out that even this should be monitored closely. Why are you sabotaging yourself? Are you afraid of happiness because it doesn’t last? Are you afraid of getting hurt? Or are you sabotaging yourself because you actually don’t want to be in the relationship?
Talk to your partner.
If you’re dealing with heavy issues that make you wonder if you could be looking for a way out of the relationship instead of a way forward with it, then you need to deal with that. Talking to a therapist might help. However, the best thing to do is talk to your partner about what you’re feeling. You’re in this together and it helps to be able to talk about what’s on your mind. You never know, you might discover that he or she has the same fears that you do.
Remember, you’re never “settled.”
Just because you’ve found someone and are “settled,” it doesn’t mean that you can turn off all your fears and thoughts, or even your commitment worries. That’s a total myth. The point is to face them and evolve. It can only make you stronger. “Forever” starts with today.
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