To The Girl In The Complicated Relationship,
It just isn't worth it.
Take it from someone who dated her "high-school-sweetheart" starting in November of freshman year of high school... till 3 years into college ending in junior year. If I could go back and tell myself "it just isn't worth it", I probably would not have listened and still held on. But hopefully, with you reading this, I can give you some insight.
Seven years is a long time. At this point, he should be the one I'm marrying, right? Unfortunately, it has taken me THIS long to be brave enough and just let go.
Complicated relationships aren't easy to describe. You hold on because you feel there is no one you can be more comfortable with. You hold on because your memories are your worst enemies. You hold on because the situation fits your lifestyle perfectly... with his family being super welcoming, or your family loving him just as much. You're friends with everyone he's friends with, and there isn't anyone else to pick up your phone calls or bring to the movies with. Heck, you might even have a dog together. You hold on because he's the closest person to you; your best friend. But why is it so complicated?
It's complicated because you've grown up to be two different people. You realized that your personalities are starting to clash, and when you've been in a relationship for so long... the first thing you feel is that it's normal to have disagreements, but what happens when you start to fall out of love with the person because you start to see you cannot connect with this person anymore? After being blinded during the "high school-honeymoon" phase.
It's complicated because you have your own dreams to reach. You have your own outlook on life, and the other person is just not seeing how you could have these sort of dreams when they do not match up with theirs. You cannot see it either. You both don't know how the future can benefit the both of you, for where you both desire to be. OR... it's complicated because your lifestyles are totally different. Sure, if you love each other you'll go odds and ends to make things work, but what happens when it get's too much? What happens when you start prioritizing on making this relationship work, rather than prioritizing on what really matters, yourself? You should focus on your life before anything else... which brings me into my next topic.
It's complicated because there are moments where you truly feel that you are finding the person you are becoming. You are young, growing up with many experiences and obstacles to face, and sometimes you need to face these alone. Being alone might be a scary thought, but being alone will teach you how to grow as a person. Alone time, as in being alone with your independency. Doing things on your own, for your own. You truly start to figure out the type of person you are, and then learn about the things that make you happiest. It gives you time to do things you've always wanted to do, without the worry of being the partner in a relationship, being committed and considerate to someone else.
Complicated relationships are very broad. It could be problematic because of families clashing, long distance relationships, abusive relationships, all the above. But in general, if you're in a relationship and you just aren't happy, it's not worth it. Not only is it emotionally draining for the both of you, but it distracts you from greater things that can happen for you.
It's not worth holding onto just because of all the history you've been through with each other. That isn't a good enough reason. Sometimes, it helps to think about the saying "all good things come to an end". It's not worth holding onto if you find yourselves trying to fix the same problems for the 50th time, finding yourselves back in the same toxic cycle. And it's most definitely not worth it if you're holding onto a thread but find yourself falling for other people very easily.
If you are so in love and the thought of being apart sickens you, then make the effort to at least have them part of your life, still. Being friends (not friends with benefits) is okay. You both have a strong connection unlike others, because if it's a complicated relationship, I bet you both bring out the best AND the worst of each other. Time is the only solution to a better outcome... BUT if it has to come down to it, total disconnected communication is the best option if you're the type to always go back.