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Don't toss relationship items while feelings still are raw

Q: A few months ago, one of the most important relationships of my life dissolved. It was a relationship that was on and off for about 10 years. We lived together for a while, and I was going to marry this man, until I realized I didn't love him anymore. How do I move on while keeping that important part of my life — do I throw away all our pictures? Gifts? Do I give them back?

Keep or Throw Away?

A: Don't do anything with the gifts or photos that you can't undo. Whatever you're unsure about, box it up and put it away for a time when your feelings aren't so raw. Unless it's a shared pet — don't box up the goldfish.

It's not easy to find line between compromising and settling

Q: How do you find the line between compromising and settling? When is it worth putting in effort and energy to address problems and when is it better to just walk away? I'm thinking about this in relation to romantic relationships but it also seems applicable to work, platonic friendships and family relationships.

Compromising vs. Settling

A: The key to a good decision: a clear-eyed assessment of how effective the "effort and energy" will be, how long you'll have to keep at it, and how open you are to the idea of maintaining that level of work indefinitely. Also useful is not being blinded by wishful thinking about what you have and where things are headed.

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Don't toss relationship items while feelings still are raw 11/25/13 [Last modified: Monday, November 25, 2013 6:56pm]

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