There’s nothing worse than having a partner who’s not supportive. It can be one of the most difficult things in the world having your partner not to be by your side.
It’s hard enough to take up something unknown to yourself without having the support of the one person expected to be your number one cheerleader.
Even if your dreams seem a little outlandish, anything is possible with hard work and a bunch of encouragement from your partner.
How do you handle an unsupportive partner? Below are 5 things to take into consideration when you feel you are in this situation:
1. Ask yourself if this is a trend
If you’ve been dating someone for years and this seems to be the first time they’ve been unsupportive, ask yourself why. Maybe they have issues with your plan that they’re uncomfortable telling you about. If your partner is normally behind anything you do 100%, this isn’t as much of a personality trait than something very specific to the situation at hand. He has a right to his opinion, and it may very well be different from yours.
2. Be compassionate towards him and your proposed life plan
Maybe you’re subconsciously not very supportive of their projects and goals and they’re just projecting that onto you. Sit down and talk about the whole future with your partner. Maybe they’re just feeling a little excluded by your most recent idea. See if you share any similar goals and try to figure out a plan together. If they continue to be negative or almost seems controlling over what you will and won’t do, then it may be time to separate.
3. Truly listen to what they have to say
There’s a good chance they’re not a monster — they’re just viewing the situation from a completely different perspective. Before you write them off and get into a fight about it, listen to them and take it all to heart. If they have your best interests in mind, it’s worth thinking about.
4. Always keep them informed
Maybe your boyfriend doesn’t know how much research you’ve put into your planned move or work promotion. Maybe they’re just hearing snippets and don’t know how badly you want something to change. Or, if you’re starting a business, perhaps they don’t know that you’re looking into buildings and permits and loans — maybe they just assume that you’re hoping they’ll take the lead. Tell them what you’re doing and don’t spare the details. If they’re still not supportive, don’t use that as an excuse to stop.
5. Admit your own reservation
This will prove to them that you’re not just willingly jumping into a project that’s destined to fail. Showing them that you’re aware of the pros and cons will help keep the conversation open, and also let them know that you’re not acting on a whim.
6. Go to a counselor
This might be a big issue with communication. If they’re willing to bring a third person into the debate, a professional is much better than a friend. It might help both of you open up, and also work out any issues that are plaguing your relationship. It’s worth giving a shot, especially if you can see the two of you having a future together.
7. Stay optimistic
When someone is being unsupportive, there’s a lot of unnecessary negativity you’ll have to deal with. They want to bring you down. If you want to go to med school and they’re talking you out of it, especially since it doesn’t fit into their own future goals, you need to remind yourself that this is your future at stake as well. Tell them that not going isn’t in the cards, but you’re willing to work out other compromises so that you’re not both miserable.
The more you understand yourself, the more silence there is, the healthier you are. —Maxime Lagacé