Being in a relationship is challenging even at the best of times and there’s no way we can figure everything out by the time we get into one. I've encountered and witnessed many different types of couples now and each time, I'm learning something new. There's no single thing you can do to prepare yourself to be with someone because we constantly evolve. You meet on that journey of evolution and if you're lucky, you fall in love with someone who is aware of their own evolution and expects it in you too. We were created to grow, change and become better. That takes a very long time to figure out and if you're lucky enough to figure it out quite early in your life, it's likely you'll be matched with someone who you can help with their own journey. And that's a tough relationship to be in. Not impossible if it's God-ordained, but definitely tough.
Here are some of the things you can do to help someone in your life who is still finding themselves:
Expect lots of mistakes: Rule number one, never put all your hopes and dreams in a man or woman because they WILL disappoint. No matter how much they have it all figured out, there will still be disappointment. With someone who is finding themselves, having to watch them try to figure things out for themselves whilst catering to your own needs will be painful.
It will require patience: Buckets and buckets of patience is required. So, naturally, as a woman who has spent most of the last decade single, I have learnt to do things quickly and generally have no time to wait for others. But when you're yoked to someone who is still not sure of their path, it doesn't help to beat them down because they won't move faster. If anything, it only slows the process down. If you find yourself losing patience, ask yourself what the hurry is. We lose the joy of the journey when we try to hurry to the destination. Guess what, once you reach that destination, you don't stop. You realise it was only a checkpoint. So ask yourself, what's the hurry?
Celebrate growth: this definitely applies to both parties. Take time to congratulate yourselves on how far you've come and be grateful for the journey that's got you to where you are now.
Don't stop your own growth: if your partner has some growing/finding to do, it doesn't mean you can't do the same. Both of you can be on the same journey; it's not a competition about who can find themselves first. It's about how the both of you can bring out the best in each other and that can only happen when you both work to be the best version of yourselves.
It's really sad to see any relationship end because of misguided expectations about how 'complete' a person should be in a relationship. What you have to remember is that just because it's God-ordained doesn't mean it'll be easy and just because it's easy doesn't mean it's God-ordained. Don't set expectations for your relationship based only on what you see around you or what you think. Take stock of what the possibilities are; ones that can only be seen through the eyes of God. Those possibilities never get old or disappear 😉