Few things are as uncomfortable as watching a woman I love pretending to be someone I know she’s not when her man is in the room. It bothers me to my core. And I know that when it comes to dating—particularly in those first few dates—there is a tendency to put our best foot forward. I actually get that.
But that’s not what I am talking about here.
I am talking about those moments when she acts shy even though I know she’s not, or moments when she seems anxious or uncomfortable because of something her new love interest says or does. It makes me feel like something is wrong.
Those moments always make me wonder what’s really going on. I sit and think, how is he treating her when no one is around? And despite those uncomfortable moments, I hesitate to say anything. I know how it goes when it comes to matters of the heart. My gut feeling is not reason enough to approach a friend about a man she seems to like. I need more than that.
So I just fall back and observe. I pay attention. I offer love and support. I give advice if she asks for it. And I wonder what compels some women to stay with men they can’t even be themselves with.
I wish there was a way for me to let all women know that you are fine just the way you are. Don’t change yourself for any man. And for any reason or excuse a woman may have for staying in a situation like this, I have a few things I want her to consider.
But I love him…
That may be true. But are you giving him a chance to love you for who you really are? Are you so scared that he might leave that you are doing what you think he wants so you don’t cause any problems? That’s no way to live. If you have to spend your relationship walking on eggshells, you may be with the wrong guy.
If I show him who I am, he might leave…
Then let him leave. You deserve better. If you have to fake it so your relationship can make it, your relationship won’t last. Regardless of any flaws you may have (and we are all flawed), your man should be able to take the good with the bad. He also shouldn’t make you feel like you are too flawed to be yourself. Tell him to step.
I don’t think I’m that different around him…
Hopefully anyone you call a true friend is honest and has your best interest at heart. If someone comes to with concerns about how you act around your man and you just aren’t buying it, check in with other people you love who have been around both of you and ask for their honest feedback. You may think one thing is going on when everyone else is observing something else. Don’t ignore the observations of people you trust who have always had your back.
He’s such a great guy….
He may be, but that doesn’t mean he’s great for YOU. The guy that’s great for you will be the guy that you can completely be yourself around. And yes, that means your loud laugh, your love for food, your quirkiness and anything else that makes you unique. When you change yourself to please others, it means your confidence needs a boost. You need to realize how amazing you truly are.
I think we have a future together…
When it comes to happily ever after, I think it happens. Sure, all relationships have issues, but if two people are right for each other and put in the work, they can build something strong. But happily ever after can’t be built on a lie. You can’t suppress who you really are and expect that to lead to happiness. It just doesn’t work that way. It will only lead to a lifetime of frustration and sadness.
We are all unique individuals. That’s what makes us special. And I can tell you from experience that the best part of my relationship with my husband is the freedom that comes with being myself—at all times. I never worry about what he’s going to think or do based on my behavior. He doesn’t make me anxious or worried about shining in my own light. I get to be myself—flaws and all. I love that.
So ladies. Be your beautiful self—whomever that is. And when you are with a man and you start acting like someone other than who you are, you should seriously consider the possibility that he is just the wrong guy for you.
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