Years don’t change bad behaviour. A concerted effort and a resolve to change a behaviour is what usually works. That said, many people stay in bad/sad/toxic/dead-end relationships because they have been in it for years, and therefore do not want to “waste those years”. However, the years of being in a soul-crushing, spirit-killing, self-esteem-diminishing, self-worth-taking relationship are wasted time and energy, plus, the additional years you will waste trying to fix something that you know is unfix-able will only make it doubly worse. If more of your time is spent being sad and arguing, and you get anxious when it is time to go home, then you know that it’s time to re-evaluate the relationship, since going home after being out in the often overwhelming world, you just want to seek the refuge of home and your significant other to create necessary balance and to recharge. If all you feel is tension and animosity at home, then some serious thought should be given as to why you are still there.
People also stay “for the kids”. Albeit I am a champion for keeping the family together, more often than not, when children live through these terribly toxic relationships, it turns out to be worse, and not better that their parents stayed together. Many of them act out, and in the long run, their own future, intimate relationships are often negatively impacted because of what they witnessed and were made to endure. Their first and very fundamental example of relationships between a man and a woman is what they observed in their homes as children. The girl child learns how to be treated by a man, as well as how to treat a man, and the boy child learns how to treat a woman as well as how to be treated by a woman. When there are years and years of obvious toxicity; and people staying together “for the children”, all it does is to extend the inevitable longer than necessary, and hurt rather than help the children for whom the parents are supposedly staying in the relationship. Like I tell the couples I counsel, it’s better to be good co-parents, than terrible spouses. Staying in a bad relationship for any reason, worse “for the children” is not a good idea!!!!. Break free and start fresh, as yeah, time is way too short to dread going to the one place that should be a sanctuary from all that the world throws at you.
Your home should be the place you go to for peace, love, unity, and for a man or woman who treats you with the respect you deserve. Speaking from personal experience, we occupy our comfort zone, even long after it is no longer comfortable, and the years fly by so fast, that as we say in Jamaica “as yuh quint” one, two and even three decades have passed and you are still in soul-crushingly unhealthy relationships that you should have exited many years ago. Invest in yourself, tap into your own greatness, know when to “teck yuh foot inna yuh hand and run”. The right person is out there for you, and you are the right person for someone else. Be so in love with you, that you, for no reason — length of time spent in a relationship, or anything else — accept less than what you know you are worth.