by Chris Bamidele
Love, as happy and blissful as it seems, can still be a minefield of confusions. If you’re trying not to show too much affection, your partner may think you don’t love them. And if you’re too giving, showing lots of affections and all, your affections and your giving nature could be taken for being too desperate and before you know it, you would be continuously taken for granted. Do not get me wrong, there are still true relationships out there where both partners are constantly striving to put more efforts to nurture their love and they don’t ever stop the efforts even if something goes wrong or there are disagreements as there would be when two people of different backgrounds and convictions want to live together as one.
In a loving relationship, some people get taken for granted so easily, while a few others are never taken for granted. But at what point would questions like “Does my partner really love me?” “Would they ever leave me?” “Am I still good enough for them?” start bugging your mind. Truth is even if both of you are madly in love with each other, you may still find these questions floating in your mind every now and then. And it is the insecurity that the questions create that makes you try harder to woo your partner all the time even if both of you are dating already. I always say it’s a good thing to be comfortable in love, but if not properly handled, it might become a bad thing. Because most of us will get to that point where we feel so assured in love, especially after our partner must have proven overtime that they really love us; it is at this point that gestures and expressions of love suddenly turn into expectation and careless demands. We then start to believe our partner would never leave us because they’re so much in love with us, and our minds start to take it easy and we may stop trying hard to woo them or impress them. And then, we start taking each other for granted.
Now not all lovers take each other for granted. But most of us do, even if we don’t realize it. As a girl, maybe ever since you started dating your boyfriend, you have been doing something special for him all the time, like going over every weekend to cook and preserve the food that will last him for a whole week for him. But at some point of time, he had turned this romantic gesture of your affection into an expectation. And some weekend, you are not able to go and cook for him, because you mum needs you to do something for her, and then next weekend you are a bit tired to go to his place, you may discover that your boyfriend might take this personal and may be slightly annoyed with you! And that’s a clear case of being taken for granted in the relationship.
So does that mean you should stop being affectionate to your lover?
No, it only means you need to start letting your partner know just how much of an effort you’re making each time. Don’t be a martyr. You may think being a silent martyr works because your partner would understand just how devoted and loving you are someday, but it doesn’t always work that way. When you’re being taken for granted by your lover, it all starts with your overwhelming silent love, and your partner’s lack of reciprocation and increase in expectations. Know this; you have every right to expect your partner to treat you with the same love and affection that you shower upon them. And the day you start to believe that you need to do more to win their affection or to hold on to them; is the day they’d start to take you for granted.
If your partner starts taking you for granted, they may not care enough for you or they may treat you like you don’t deserve their love or attention, all because they believe they’re too good for you or that you’d never leave them no matter what they do, because you need them so much more than they need you. That is the point you really need to talk to your partner about it, or you may end up feeling miserable and useless in the relationship, even if you’re the one who’s more giving and loving in the relationship.
But if you are reading this piece and you are still not sure if you’re being taken for granted in your relationship or not; Read these 9 signs in your partner’s behaviour and you might just know for sure!
1. He never returns your call or text:
When you call or text your partner, they don’t call you back even if several hours pass by and you know they’re not that busy and they can afford to recharge their phones. And this is going to the ladies especially, if a guy tells you he has been so busy at work for the whole week, and he can’t call you or take your call for the period and this happens several times; you are being taken for granted.
2. He/she gets very impatient with you.
If your partner loses their temper very easily every time he/she is trying to explain something to you, especially when you are the one who asks for that explanation; watch it. He/she is starting to take you for granted.
3. Your partner doesn’t care if they lose you or not.
This might be hard to tell sometimes, but when your partner does not seem to care who you go out with, or what you are doing at any point at all. Or they boldly or subtly tell you while having arguments that “I know you’ll never find someone as good as me”; you might just want to have a discussion before it’s too late.
4. Your partner forgets you a lot.
Your partner forgets your birthday or your special days and it happens repeatedly, and he/she doesn’t really care to know about what is happening in your life, and doesn’t bother to even ask you about your day because they believe their life is so much more important than yours.
5. Your sacrifices don’t always count.
You may have sacrificed many things for your lover, your friends, your habits and maybe your plans. But yet, your partner doesn’t respect you and still behaves like you’re such a small part of the relationship.
6. You are reminded only of your mistakes.
You may treat your partner with a lot of love and affection, and you may try hard to please them all the time. But no matter what you do, it just goes unnoticed. And on the other hand, even if you make one mistake, they make it a point to never forget it and keep bringing it up at every instance they get.
7. You know you deserve to be treated better.
Sometimes you feel this, but you’re too scared to say it out in the open so that you won’t lose your partner. And you’re too broken inside to even acknowledge that you deserve something better even though you know you’re being wronged in the relationship.
8. Your partner expects more all the time.
You are doing your best but it always seems not to be enough, but yet, you just endure it in the hope that they may see just how giving and loving you are and love you back same way. But the harder you try, the more they take you for granted and expect more from you. No matter what you do, it’s just never enough to please them.
9. You constantly feel used and unappreciated.
Most times, you feel used, hurt and disrespected in the relationship. You know you are a strong individual around other people, but your partner has broken that pride of yours and always makes you feel useless and small in the relationship. You don’t even think of leaving them, but you’re constantly worried about whether your partner would leave you someday. And this worry/fear makes you try harder to please them. But the harder you try, the more they expect from you. And what starts off as a little doubt turns into a vicious cycle that hurts you and leaves you feeling more vulnerable and defeated all the time.
Now that we know some of the signs, what do you do to reignite the lost spark in your romance and to not being taken for granted? This is another question to be answered altogether another day, because I believe anything broken can be fixed. There is no relationship without its troubles, and if you fail to fix the one you are in, who says the next one won’t have same trouble or worse? So, for now, I suggest both of you talk about it firmly and find ways to fix things, maybe your partner is just lost and he/she will soon realize that they need a change of attitude, and start doing the right things.
Chris Bamidele blogs at www. chrisbamidele.blogspot.com
Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.