When You Feel Trapped In Your Relationship

When It Feels Too Complicated to Leave Your Partner

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“You are free,” Allison said to me matter-of-factly, “You get to start fresh, leave something which is no longer serving you and you have your whole life ahead of you.”

“You have your life ahead of you too,” I said slowly, unsure of how far to probe into this conversation or her life to be more specific, “You are happily married, you have two beautiful children, a great job — ” “I am not happy,” Allison quickly interjected.

“I am not happy,” Allison quickly interjected.

“Oh…” I said slowly, too scared to ask directly what she meant by that comment, but trying to be careful to not sound insensitive. Allison did not need my persuasion and powered on, like she had been meaning to tell someone this for a very long time, “My marriage is not good and I am trapped. I married Bren when I was so young and I had no idea who I was marrying or what kind of family I marrying into.”

“My marriage is not good and I am trapped. I married Bren when I was so young and I had no idea who I was marrying or what kind of family I marrying into.”

She sighed and sat down and I did not dare to move an inch. I had no idea what was going on, but this beautiful, successful, rich woman, who was supposed to be living the seemingly picture-perfect marriage was envious of my failed marriage and it made absolutely no sense to my twenty-something self. However, it makes absolutely total sense to me as a thirty-something-year-old woman.

I didn’t realize how complicated marriage can get.

“I cannot wait to see what you accomplish and the happiness you have in the next chapter of your life,” Allison said to me, giving me a hug and I knew that she genuinely meant every word of it.

I am unhappy in my relationship, but I cannot afford to leave my partner.

Usually, especially as we get older, our finances get more and more intertwined with our partner and the idea of leaving them and losing half of what is ours or more seems unbearable.

Money is not medicine.

You could also be in a situation where your partner is the breadwinner of the family and you do not have an income or a large enough income to support yourself, so that could make you feel trapped in the relationship.

I am unhappy in my relationship, but we have kids.

So what? Do you think you are doing them any favours by forcing them to live in an unhappy household? I remember vividly a friend of mine’s parents were getting separated in high school. They kept trying to make things work, by moving back in together, and throughout high school, their attempts at keeping their family together eroded everything to smithereens.

I am unhappy in my relationship, but this is what marriage is like.

I loathe nothing more than the person who shits on their spouse when they are not around, constantly. Sure, we all complain about our significant other from time to time, but if you use any social interaction to dump all of your relationship woes on your friends, you have much bigger issues.

I am unhappy in my relationship, but it is not bad enough to leave.

This scenario is the worst of them all. Your relationship is not so bad that you can pinpoint clear reasons to leave, but it does not bring you anything positive either.

They are simply no longer your go-to person for life’s highs and lows.

It is like the plant you leave on your windowsill, never remembering to care for it, but somehow it never dies. It does nothing for you really, you do nothing for it really, but you share the same space together.

Getting out of an unhappy marriage is a headache, but getting out of anything you do not like is a headache. Riding it out until one of you dies is the most depressing thing I have ever heard of. If you are not happy in your relationship it is ruining your life in ways you might not even be aware of.

I write about issues that are near and dear to my heart, with the hope that my stories, experiences, and struggles may empower others: amanlitt.ca

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