When you become half of a couple, you grow together. After some time, it’s common to want to change up your style a bit. Certain things you liked about yourself before don’t apply today. For instance, you were a brunette and now want to be a sultry redhead. Or, on the more extreme end, you decide to go under the knife to get your nose fixed because you’re doing what you think will make you happy. It’s OK if you are the one wanting to make the change. However, wanting to change requires self-awareness in areas you believe you can improve.
Is it ever OK for your significant other to suggest altering your appearance? What if they want you to change your thinking or your behavior? It’s not acceptable if the change is unwanted or feels forced.
7 Signs They’re Trying to Change You
If you’re unsure of whether your partner is attempting to change you, watch for these 7 signs:
- They never value your opinion or suggestions
- They constantly argue with you
- Your partner doesn’t like your friends
- They constantly suggest how to dress and act
- They make decisions for you
- Your significant other doesn’t love you for who you are
- They make your relationship conditional
According to The Herald-Times, “It’s not easy to recognize these signs because they are easily disguised as signs of affection or concern.”
When it’s OK to Change for Your Partner
Your Partner Wants to Change
If your partner wants to alter something in their life and asks you for input, it’s OK to jump on board to make that change together. Your goals and expectations may not align perfectly, but you’re headed in the right direction, and more importantly, you’re headed there together.
You Don’t Feel Good about Yourself
As with any other change in your relationship, your self-esteem can drop due to many reasons, like job loss, weight gain, or mental instability. If you notice that you aren’t feeling as good about yourself as you’d like, consider alternatives to help boost your self-esteem. For example, if weight is an issue, try doing activities together like walking or tennis. Doing so will not only help you get fit, but it will also bring the both of you together.
When Establishing a Boundary
The boundaries you had early in your relationship may have changed down the line. An example of a healthy relationship change is to set new boundaries and respect them. Establish ones that are essential to health and well-being. Otherwise, it can tear a relationship apart. For instance, a healthy goal is no longer engaging in heated arguments. Instead, you’ve decided to be calm when you have serious discussions.
Lack of Drive and Motivation
Once, you were a go-getter, but now you’ve become more sedentary and lack motivation. Communicate with your partner how you feel. Tell them you feel stressed or overwhelmed and can’t find the drive to do anything. This helps them understand that you’re not lazy. Instead, you lack motivation, but you want to change.
Tell them something like, “I’m sorry you’re doing everything around the house, but I find it hard to motivate myself.”
Then, offer help by taking on some of the chores. Sometimes all it takes is to get moving. However, if it’s a prolonged lack of motivation, you should consider seeking outside help.
Unhealthy Communication Skills
You easily get angry, and you know it. The last time you had a heated argument, you went for the jugular with some of the mean things you said. In this case, it’s OK to decide that you will alter your communication skills to learn to discuss issues without flying off the handle.
Additionally, communication skills include notifying your partner of daily happenings in life. For instance, if you’re going to be late, let them know.
Be more direct regarding your feelings. Let them know what bothers you. By the same token, let them know what you appreciate. Without healthy communication, there is no healthy relationship.
You’re Expanding Your Horizons
As a single person, you were different than you are as half of a couple. Your partner has introduced you to new things that push the boundaries of your comfort zone by trying new things or visiting different places. This type of change can be incredibly enriching for you personally and as a couple.
- Has your partner changed your views on how you perceive the world?
- Are you intrigued by their vegan lifestyle and want to try it out for yourself?
These types of positive changes can be a good thing. However, be sure you’re not falling in line because you fell in love. You can still have the same views and do the activities you enjoy, but at the same time, try new things.
You’re Becoming a Healthier Person
We often wait until another person comes into our lives before we realize that we need to start taking better care of ourselves. This is primarily because we realize there’s another person to think about besides ourselves.
When we fall in love, we want to put our best foot forward, and that includes being in good health. We want to enjoy physical activities with our partners, so if they encourage quitting smoking and exercising more, it’s a good thing.
Even if you’re hesitant at first, it is something that benefits you down the line.
They’re Smaller, Insignificant Changes
When making changes in relationships, there’s a broad spectrum of options to choose from. For example, a small change is trimming your hair because your partner wants to see you with a shorter cut. A more significant change is permanently altering your appearance by going under the knife. Either change is OK if it’s something you agree with. However, never make an unwanted change, big or small, because your partner prefers it.
You’re a Happier Person
In the beginning, sometimes we may not want to change, but if, with time, you find yourself in a better state of mind, the slight lifestyle alteration benefits your well-being. If your life is beginning to look better, then you’ve made the correct changes.
6 Signs You’re in a Positive Relationship
Being in a relationship doesn’t make it positive. A good relationship is a healthy one, and that means having things like excellent communication and respect. How happy a person is in their relationship has a direct, powerful influence on their well-being.
You know you’re in a healthy relationship if, for example, you change your diet and start eating healthier. Now you look and feel better. You’re more active, have a positive mindset, and do all-around better in life; Congratulations, it’s a win!
Essentially, it’s not OK if your partner asks you to change for them. For instance, they want you to lose weight because they think you’re too fat, or they want you to grow out your hair because they like it longer. Your partner can have preferences, and that’s OK. You do, too. However, it becomes an issue when they force you to change into how they want you to be.
Suppose you decide to change, whether physically or emotionally, do it because you want to. Don’t do it because your partner prefers you to or because you’re afraid they’ll leave you if you don’t. If your partner is truly “the one,” they will love you for who you are.