My mom taught me many things over the years ranging from how to curl my hair, do my makeup, cook, rollerblade, and ice skate, to how to stand up for myself.
But one of the greatest lessons my mom ever taught me was knowing when to walk away from something, whether that something is a class, job, friendship, or relationship. Her words are engrained in my head.
"Leave the table when love is no longer being served."
One problem I've had with past friendships and even relationships is that I put in more than I received.
During college, I found myself in a "situationship" with this guy who refused to put in any effort. What made the situation even more complicated were the feelings involved on my end. While I enjoyed being with this person, we weren't making any progress, and I felt I kept putting my personal preferences on pause. This person meant a lot to me, but I felt as though I wasn't getting anything in return.
Even though I knew in my heart there wouldn't be any future, I struggled to end it, even with my mom's words ringing in my head, thinking, "is it time to walk away?"
Although all relationships take work, when and how do we know if they are actually worth the work? Admitting a relationship is over is a challenge in and of itself, let alone the pain and anguish that comes with moving on and dealing with the change. However, sometimes starting over is the best thing to do for your emotional health — many variables factor into dealing with ending a relationship. Maybe the magic faded away, or you and your partner are letting small fights dictate the way you approach things, maybe you don't love them, or they don't love you.
If your gut feels off about something, listen to it — trust it. Don't ignore warning signs or dismiss true problems because of fear of comments you may get from other people.
Acknowledge that even if you end a relationship, it wasn't a "waste of time." Think about all you learned about yourself, your personal growth, what you now know you want out of a relationship. I learned more about what I do and don't want thanks to my college love life experience. And remember, just because someone isn't sharing their relationship struggles doesn't mean they don't exist. Never judge a relationship because you don't know what happens behind closed doors.
*Remember: October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. If you're in a relationship that is putting you in danger, ask for help or call 1-800-799-7233 for support.