If you learn how to be yourself in your relationship, you’ll be happier and healthier – and so will your partner. Women can lose their self-identities in their relationships and marriages, and not even know it. These tips for being yourself in your love relationship will help whether you’ve married for 5 weeks or 50 years.
Remove the Mask! Living an Authentic Life by Linda Ellis Eastman will help if you’re struggling with life, losing yourself, and figuring out who you are. It’s a “powerful must-read for women who wish increased self-confidence, higher self-esteem and support on their life journey. Written by professional speakers, life coaches and consultants, this book helps women to overcome the People Pleaser Syndrome and live a joyful life of THEIR choosing.”
A long-term committed love relationship could be the best thing that ever happens to you. Or it can be the worst thing – if you lose your personal identity (your sense of self, your feeling of “this is who I am”).
How to Be Yourself in Your Relationship
And, here are a few tips for staying who you are and retaining a sense of personal identity when you’re in love…
Realize when you’re “giving yourself over”
“Be courteous, be obliging, but don’t give yourself over to be melted down for the benefit of the tallow trade.” ~ George Eliot, whose real name was Mary Anne Evans.
Healthy love relationships require compromise on both parts. To be loving, we must make daily sacrifices. This means different things to different couples, but it could include accepting that he’s not a multi tasker, doesn’t enjoy talking about your relationship, and sometimes says dumb things. And he (hopefully) accepts things about you – your weaknesses, flaws, mistakes, regrets.
The danger of losing yourself – your personal identity – is changing who you are or doing things that aren’t “you.” Here’s an example: I want to go to a friend’s birthday party on Friday night, but my husband is dragging his feet. I could suppress who I am and stay home (losing my personal identity in love), or go to the party and have a great time (being myself!).
Spend time with your women friends
Many women lose touch with their friends when they fall in love…it’s a normal part of the whole romantic relationship thing! When you’re first falling in love, you spend more time with your man because it’s fun, exciting, passionate. But it’s important to balance your love relationship with your “old” life: your friends, family, hobbies, activities. To keep your personality identity when you’re in love, you need to stay connected with your friends.
When you’re chillaxin’ with your friends, talk about The #1 Reason Women Stay in Bad Relationships.
Confess the bad bits to your friends and family
I’ve dated men who had personality and character traits that I could not tell my friends and family about! I was embarrassed and even ashamed that the man I was in love with had those traits…so I didn’t tell anyone. That, my friends, is one way to lose your personal identity in love. Talk about the things that bother you about your man and your relationship. Force yourself to be honest and real – because the more authentic you are with others, the more “yourself” you’ll be with your man.
If you can’t be honest about your relationship, read When You Can’t Tell Your Family How Your Husband Treats You.
Listen to the poet Rumi, and “Let there be spaces in your togetherness”
When you’re in love, you want to be together all the time! Stop that. Take a step back. Tune into your heart and soul, and make sure you’re staying connected to who you are. Think about who this man is and what you want out of life…are they compatible? Make decisions about your relationship with both your head and your heart…not just your heart.
If you’ve lost yourself or your personal identity in your love relationship, remember George Eliot’s words: “It’s never too late to be who you might have been.”
Are you wondering why you’re still with your partner? Read Why Do Women Stay in Loveless Marriages? 5 Reasons.
Are you “yourself” with your man? If you’ve lost your personal self-identity in your love relationship, how will you get it back?
I'm glad you're here! My name is Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen; my husband Bruce and I live in Vancouver, BC with our critters. We can't have kids, and are learning to accept whatever life brings - both good and bad. I have an MSW (Master of Social Work) from UBC, and degrees in Education and Psychology. I hope you say hello below - I can't give relationship advice, but writing can bring you clarity and insight.