5 Ways You Will Know They Are “The One”

“When you stop looking for love, it will find you.”

Yet, sometimes we search to the ends of the earth to find the person who perfectly complements our soul. Yes, we can stop actively looking, but to find that one-in-a-million, we must always be awake, open to the people around us, searching beyond to find possibilities we wouldn’t have found had we not expanded our horizons.

Sometimes we must choose to look for love.

In the end, we always have a choice in who we love and owe it to ourselves (and that special person) to make the best choice we can possibly make.

1.  Choose the person you instantly connect with

Choose the person whose soul instantly connects with yours across the room, leaving the air sizzling with possibility between the two of you – A connection which translates well to sexual and physical chemistry. You never realize how important this chemistry is until you are in a relationship where it doesn’t exist. Maybe “Love at first sight” does not exist – But there IS this. Whatever it is; That inexplicable, energetic, magnetic, hypnotic attraction between two people. It’s not lust. It’s something bigger.

It’s a connection which makes you want to kiss them when they come close. You’ll feel it around certain people. You will be pulled to them like a moon orbiting the Earth.

Some might say this chemistry is not the most important component in a strong relationship. They are wrong. It is the absolute foundation. This connection is what’s going to have you pausing in the kitchen and hallways to hug and kiss each other, naturally, for years to come.

It’s the propelling force for friendly butt slaps and the desire to touch each other. It’s the desire to hold hands, to crave the feel of their lips on yours, the forging of the ache whenever the two of you are apart. And when things go wrong or you have a period of time where you fall out of love with each other, even slightly (which happens in every relationship), this foundation will draw you back to him or her, time and time again.

Don’t get it wrong – This connection is not based on physical attractiveness or looks alone. Someone doesn’t have to be conventionally attractive to possess chemistry that interacts with yours. It’s not a physical reaction to their beauty at all – It’s a reaction to their energy. Some will have a harder time connecting to others in this way. Empaths may find they make connections this way very easily. It’s the one that sparks myths, legends, tales of ‘Twin Flames’, soul mates, etc. Is there only one person for everyone? Doubtful. But there are souls whose energy matches yours or combines pleasantly with yours. It may sound like new age hoopla, but even the skeptic will be taken aback when they experience the phenomenon. “Chemistry” is very real. You may have noticed it between actors who excel at their professions, musicians, etc. who take advantage of this force of nature to sell their performance. Like these two…

Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper Credit: ABC

2.  Choose the person who is good for you

Not the person who is good for your parents. Not your friends. Not your religion. Not your kids. Not your pets.  Not your brothers or sisters. Not your co-workers. Not your bank account. Not your hobbies. YOU.

“But wait a minute – These things are me!” You’re saying.

At the very core, you are your body. You are your soul. You are your thoughts. You are your waking life. You are the breaths you take in and out. You are not all those other things. You are not an extension of someone else. Your life is your own.

Simplify everything down to you and your special someone. You are the last two people left alive in the world after a terrifying apocalypse. There are no parents to give their stamp of approval. Your friends aren’t there to be impressed or envious over how hot your significant other is. There are no churches preaching the constraints of their religion against your partner’s religion. If you had kids, they are gone, too. There is nobody left to judge your partner based on their profession, looks, hobbies, etc. Money no longer matters after the apocalypse.

In this post-apocalyptic world – Do you still like this person? Do you feel like you would get tired of each other quickly? Is the post-apocalyptic world an adventure with them? Do you feel safe with them? Do they keep your spirits up? What would you talk about? How do you feel in their presence? Do you feel trapped? Do you feel like you are not allowed to speak your mind? Do you feel like you will be physically threatened? Does the person’s energy agitate you? Is their sense of humor compatible with yours? Can you both laugh at the same things?

Basically, are the two of you compatible? You don’t necessarily have to make this a line item examination. It’s okay to have differences. What matters is how you feel around each other. Take careful note of how you feel in the other person’s presence. If you do not feel like a better person, don’t respect them, or don’t trust them – Don’t choose them.

Nobody realizes the alternate reality they are sometimes choosing a life partner in – An alternate reality of everyone else’s expectations and opinions on who is best for you. Be conscious and present when choosing your life partner. If you are choosing someone to make all these other people happy and thinking how much certain people in your life are going to love them – You are not making YOU happy. You are living to please others. It’s a situation which will eventually self-destruct.

man and woman facing each other while hugging near river
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3.  Choose the person who accepts your imperfections and helps you to grow

This one has two parts. But let’s start with the first. Let’s start with YOU. You are not a perfect person. Repeat after me:

I am not a perfect person.

Most people are painfully aware of this. Yet, it is the reason why 100% of marriages end. Because one or both parties in a marriage are not perfect people. Amazing, right?

What is truly rare, truly amazing about marriage and should honestly be in every marital vow everywhere until the end of time — is the admission that we are not perfect people. What if we vowed to be thankful and grateful to our partner for living with our limitations and imperfections as we learned how to navigate life together?

How beautiful would it be if two people vowed to love each other through their imperfections, helping each other in growing towards becoming more perfect people?

What all this translates to is choosing a patient partner. Choose the one who sees you screw up. Choose the one who listens about your past screw ups. Choose the one who praises you for making it right. Choose the person who watches your great business idea fail miserably, dusts you off and says, “Hey, you tried.” Choose the one who picks you up every time you fall and encourages you to keep moving forward. Choose the one who enriches you and encourages you to be your best. Choose the one who provides an environment in which you can grow and be who you’ve always dreamed of being. Choose the one who supports your hobbies, even if they don’t share them (and assuming they are healthy hobbies). Choose the one who isn’t disgusted by what you look like with no makeup on. Choose the one who sees you get angry, lose your shit, do things you’re not proud of, but loves you anyway. Because they know that behavior isn’t you. Because they have faith in you. Because they are invested in you. Choose the person that believes in you and your potential.

men s black zip up jacket
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4.  Choose the person committed to their own personal growth

Here’s part two – Your partner. Repeat after me:

They are not a perfect person.

Too many people have checklists of what they consider the perfect man or woman, talking about what they must “have”. They fail to realize that most of the traits of the perfect man or woman are traits developed by being surrounded by loving, positive people. They give unrealistic lists of what essentially amount to the ‘After’ photo of someone who has worked hard to become that person or someone who may exist on paper who will never love them in the way they wish they were loved. They neglect all the ‘Before’ photos walking around them. So many good people with so much potential.

Choose the one who has dreams. Choose the one who has objectives. Choose the one who may not know what they want to do with their life, but they’re good at things and are on their way to figuring it out. Choose the unloved one who never had someone reveal their worth to them. Choose the one who is curious. Choose the one who reads books and watches documentaries and has a genuine interest in the world around them. Choose the one who is humble. Choose the one who listens well. Choose the one always open to new ideas. Choose the one who is aware of their flaws and points them out. Choose the one who is working on their problems. Choose the one who is hard on themselves. Choose the one who apologizes. Choose the one who admits they sometimes think you deserve better. Choose the one who says, “I screwed up”. Choose the one who hesitates to judge others because they screw up themselves. Choose the one who seeks spiritual and emotional fulfillment. Choose the one who sees your mistakes and smiles, not to mock you, but in sympathy because they make mistakes too. Choose the one who loves you all the more for that. Choose the one who will never stop trying.

When you choose someone committed to personal growth, you are choosing someone who gives a damn enough about themselves to become a better person for them and who gives a damn enough about you to think you deserve more than their worst. A person doesn’t have to be PERFECT to deserve your love. They just have to be ever-evolving and growing and have the ultimate desire to be the best human being they can be.

And you should, too!

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5.  Choose the one whom with communication is easy and open

It’s said so often that it’s almost a cliché, but communication is definitely key.

You must be able to talk to your partner about anything and they must feel comfortable talking to you.

There is no compromise on this. You have to set aside time to communicate with your partner. They need to be able to come to you with what is bothering them. You need to be able to go to them. You need to be able to put down your phone, turn off the TV, stop driving, stop doing whatever it is you are doing and listen to them, even if it “inconveniences” you and they need to reciprocate in kind.

What’s more inconvenient? Losing your relationship or giving your partner a few hours of open, honest communication? If you give your partner more communication time, they will need less and less of it as they feel their needs are being met. Instead of hours of talking, it will turn into minutes. They will be happier and your relationship might grow in ways that may surprise you.

You’re not in a relationship with a robot. You’re in a relationship with a human being who has human needs and a human psyche. However, like a piece of machinery, look at communication time as an oil change. It’s routine relationship maintenance. In the beginning of a relationship, it’s easy, but communication is something that shouldn’t ever be stopped just because a relationship is in the “comfortable” phase.

Being in a relationship is more than just sex, sleeping next to someone, or having someone to go do things with. It’s having a companion who gets to know your soul, your thoughts, and becomes the closest human being to you on earth. This is what a relationship is. Communication nurtures and waters the soil for the rewards of the relationship to bloom in. Without it, the garden dries up and dies, or even worse, someone else will come along to tend to the garden you thought was worthless.

Choose the one who gets to know you inside out and never stops valuing your need to express yourself and never stops expressing themselves, letting you get to know them. It’s a beautiful thing when the walls come down and you let each other in, fully. This creates a lifetime bond and a bridge of trust. Never take for granted that someone loved you enough to let you inside.

Choose wisely and live well.

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Being a ‘Good Girl’ In a Hookup Culture

I’ve always been one of the ‘good girls’.

Even my attempts to be a bad girl have come off horribly flawed. Kind of like Sandra Dee in ‘Grease’ turning into ‘Bad Sandy’ – Nobody ever bought it.

My anger comes off more like an angry kitten mewling than a lion roaring. I can’t be mean. I don’t know how to hit others below the belt. I don’t know how to let my inhibitions carry me away to do and say things totally out of my element.

After many, many years… I’m okay with this.

In high school, all my friends were losing their virginity and telling me about it. I didn’t want anything to do with any of that mess, but I had a serious boyfriend and felt pressured so I eventually caved to the pressures of teenage boy lust. I didn’t know what else to do after that so I ended up married to him. Then, we ended up divorced.

Throughout my twenties, my friends would hook up randomly with guys we met when we went out dancing. I picked them up from their walks of shame and took them back to their cars and heard the sordid details over breakfast at Denny’s.

I relived the glory of their one night stand stories with them. I held them in my arms as they cried when the guy didn’t call them a week later. I went with them to buy pregnancy tests when they were late and scared.

I was the “support friend” and I was damn good at it.

However, I never had a shortage of men wanting to date me, either. Most of them were all about hooking up and I knew it. I knew when they would try to kiss me on the first date (Ladies, just so you are aware – If he leans in for a kiss on the first date, he’s going to go after more the second date).

This ended up being the majority of guys I dated. Lots of one-and-done dates. We would go somewhere and then he’d lean in for the kiss and I would never call him again — Or, more often than not, upon hearing that I didn’t kiss on the first date, they would never call me again. It is amazing how much this simple rule saved my ass.

Don’t kiss on the first date if you don’t want your heart broken. You want to make sure the guy is really for real, make him wait three dates. Actually, I hate the whole phrase “make him wait” anyway. Is it really making him wait? In reality, shouldn’t you want to know someone before exchanging saliva with them. Is that so bad?

Meanwhile, my friend was making out on the dance floor with the hottie she had just met. Welcome to Herpes, may I take your order?

You can only live like this for so long before you start getting really irritated with having to pull your friend off a guy at a club after closing time at 3 a.m.

“But I’m going to Jake’s house!”
“No, you’re not.”
“Yes, I am. He’s soooo sweet. And look at him…”
“You don’t know Jake.”
“Yes, I do! We’ve been talking for an hour.”
“Jake could be a serial killer.”
“Oh, he is not! Stop it.”
“Come on, let’s go…”
“Stop being a prude!

And there you have it. The word that follows around girls like me.


At first, it hurts. But when you think about it, your alternative is to be a “whore” or a “slut”. So…Which would you rather be? Pick your poison, ladies.

I was only concerned about the well-being of my friends and that was the label cast upon me, repeatedly. Not once did I look at them and tell them to stop being “sluts”. Quite contrarily, I would still pick them up when some drunk asshole refused to take them home. I would still talk to them for hours when some guy they thought for sure was the real thing never called them.

One of my best friends was always being passionate and going with the moment. She slept with men on the first date continuously. She slept with anyone she wanted to and told me she felt free. I always thought she was happier than I was and probably had more fun so I really envied her carefree life. But it should have been obvious with who was drying whose tears more often.

I remained guarded and always seemed to end up in long term relationships. Maybe because I didn’t give in to short term guys.

I wasn’t a prude. It had nothing to do with being overtly religious. It just had to do with the fact that I held the sexual act in high regard, and almost as a sacred ritual. It wasn’t to be dispensed cheaply. I was very passionate, but believed in keeping it under wraps. The few men who knew this side of me believed they were receiving something special that not just any man could have and our sexual relationship was one to be cherished.

Because of my philosophy, I’ve ended up in a relationship with a really good man. He was being actively pursued by quite a few women, but he wasn’t into the hookup scene. He was polite, holding doors for me and didn’t move in to kiss me once. In fact, I made the first move and kissed him. And I realized something — By the way he treated me, it also made him seem as if he were the man not just any woman could have. So I wanted him more.

It’s such a simple philosophy, but one that has led me into the arms of a really good man while still watching friends painfully struggle their way through painful hookups and short-lived relationships with jerks.

It’s a mistake I see them make over and over again and I am powerless to tell them what I see them doing wrong. They will take it the wrong way, call me a prude or tell me that the lifestyle they live with no strings attached makes them feel powerful or free.

I’ve seen a friend change, though. She finally realized she was sick and tired of men who were not as committed as she was, tired of having short, passionate flings, and so she changed the behavior and has since attracted a good, steady man who treats her well. It’s not an easy thing to admit, but going with the flow with your sexuality with wild abandon is anything but “freeing”. I’ve got to say it — Being free is worse than being cheap. Especially when you realize how much value you actually have. We are worth so much more than that.

There is a reason behind clubs, brands, etc. having velvet ropes and an air of “exclusivity” – It means not everyone qualifies. Not everyone is deserving. When you start looking at yourself and your personal brand, you will realize if you want to raise your value, you must make yourself more exclusive.

Being a ‘Good Girl’ is far from being boring. I promise you the best sex you will ever have is the sex in a committed relationship with someone committed to pleasing you because they believe you are something special and want to make you happy.

The best sex is when you know every line of their body and are in love with their mind and soul, as well. The best sex is felt through a soul connection with someone else who knows their worth and value and chooses to share it with you because they love you. You can have wild sex, gentle sex, rough sex, slow sex, etc. with someone you know intimately, too. And the best part of it all is knowing they will be there when you wake up, again and again.

I know this should all be common sense, but we so seldom follow it. Hookup Culture has become a thing and I think it’s time we deconstruct and discourage something that only benefits people who just want to use your body with no attention to the soul attached and treats human beings as disposable.

With all that said, I don’t judge women who do it. I don’t think less of them. Especially when their aim is not to find a good man, nor romance or true love. If “free” sexuality is more important than a serious connection, that is definitely their prerogative. But how many times have I comforted the woman who claimed to be free, yet cried when her heart got involved?

I do judge casual sex. I believe it is for the person who is broken. It’s for the person who has not yet discovered their own worth. It’s for the people who do not realize the beauty of their own soul or the worth of the body it resides in. Casual sex is a void to get lost in, temporarily allowing yourself the illusion of closeness and intimacy. Just for one night.

It’s fooling yourself. As human beings, we long for personal contact and to be touched, loved and cherished. Then, we are surprised when we let someone close to us to use our bodies, that we feel empty days, weeks, even years later.

When you can mitigate this need for closeness and call it out for what it is — Loneliness –It becomes easier to navigate a pool of users and abusers and to find the real and genuine. Somewhere out there is someone looking for someone exactly like you. But you won’t know it if you are wasting your time and trashing your own reputation spending time with people who base their entire lives on impulse rather than understanding and forging deeper emotional bonds. If you want to be daring, be different, be unique — Ditch the casual hookups. Demand better for yourself.

Be the man or woman not just anyone can have and watch your existence transform into something beyond your expectations.

woman standing against flowers
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How To Make Long Distance Love Last

Does absence make the heart grow fonder or does absence make the heart start to wander?

You may have heard dismal statistics on long distance relationships showing long distance love as a doomed endeavor headed for a disastrous falling out when love in proximity knocks the far away lover out of mind.

We took a look at the statistics on long distance relationships as the basis of this article, but quickly threw them out the window because it’s nearly impossible to create a conclusion from a proper sampling. You can ask how many people from a certain group have been in long distance relationships. You can ask how many of those relationships lasted. However, when other factors are added in, it’s impossible to prove that the uncoupling happened because of anything to do with distance being a factor.

Instead of focusing on whether or not long distance relationships do, in fact, last — What the hell do people in successful long distance relationships do to keep the passion alive over the miles?

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Communicate respectfully

Whether your love is sitting next to you on the couch or 5,000 miles away in another country, communication is the most vital part of any relationship. In the beginning of a particularly intense romantic connection, you may feel like you are in a long distance relationship with your phone. You talk every single night. Sometimes constantly throughout the day. You text. You FaceTime. You Skype. Snapchat. WhatsApp. Messenger. Talk on the phone. To be perfectly honest, always being attached to your phone can get obnoxious. At first, you started saying, “Be right back. Gotta pee.” Now, you take your phone into the restroom with you. After a while, you start feeling too connected to your phone and communication starts to drift off.

On the other hand, a communication void starts to cause all kinds of problems a couple who live close to each other may not have. The distance feels most apparent when the two of you are off doing other things in your normal, daily lives. You may find yourself pausing many times throughout the day to think, “What is he doing, right now, at this very moment?” Then your mind starts to wander…and sometimes it goes to some pretty dark places. This is part of the beast that is long distance dating.

Too much communication can be bothersome and make someone feel leashed to technology when they are longing to live life. Too little means one or both of you may start living in your heads, going crazy, wondering what the other is doing, who they are with, etc.

Be respectful of each other’s real life time. Realize that work, school and responsibilities of daily life are most important. All these things are means to an end.

If he keeps up good work performance, maybe he can get that transfer to her town.
If she finishes school and gets her degree, they can finally be together.

Don’t interfere with your partner’s daily life. You are part of their reality, but these other things are their focus right now, so in the end, they get to be with you. Communicate respectfully, openly, but realize their life needs focus, too.

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Live in each other’s environments

You come back home after a night out with your mates to call your love and she’s steaming mad because you were gone too long and she doesn’t know who you were with. Even when you tell her, she begins to doubt you. The distance begins to take a toll. You may begin thinking, “If she only knew me…Really knew me. She would see how painfully boring I am.”

These kinds of misunderstandings can happen for many reasons. You’ve got to make sure you communicate with your partner the same as you would if they lived nearby. Be transparent. Tell them where you are going and with whom and don’t lie about it. Make sure you let them know they are the only one for you and that you will be thinking about them the whole time. But also have fun! You can’t get caught up in pining for a long distance love to the point where you stop living.

The key is to make sure you get regular visits with your love in your home environment. As many as possible. They need to come to your space and see how you live. You need to go to where they live and do the same. They need to experience some of your daily routine so they can see who you are and how they add a piece to the puzzle of your life. Let them see the real you. Even if it’s the you who leaves dirty dishes in the sink or the you who has all the books on your shelf alphabetized by author and title.

Trust begins to be built by seeing one in their environment and getting used to the humdrum of their daily life. If they are at your house and your phone is not ringing off the hook with other potential dates and they see the simple life you lead, it will be easier for your partner to calm their jealous anxiety and go about their daily life, too.

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Give Physical Reminders of You

A sweatshirt soaked in your cologne, a bottle of your perfume so he can make his pillow smell like you, jewelry that conveys your promise, flowers sent as a surprise, a pine-scented candle to burn that reminds you of the time you went hiking together, when you are talking to him and he mentions how hungry he is and how good pizza sounds, have one sent to his house. All the modern technology just means you have the potential to be an amazing long distance partner from wherever you are, now. Whenever you leave your partner after a physical visit, leave them something behind that makes you feel closer to them.

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Don’t expect the world to stop for your romance

The real pushback you may be getting about this relationship is from your friends, your parents, your co-workers, your classmates, etc. You may be telling them all about this wonderful person you met and they say they are really happy with you…Until you tell them she lives in China and you are in Montana. Then, they look at you like you are crazy and start telling you how many beautiful women there are near you.

It’s okay because they don’t get it. Not everyone will. In fact, some will be downright unsupportive of your romance so sometimes it’s best to keep it quiet until things become very serious.

Also, keep things respectful with them. When you are out with your friends, they are going to be annoyed if you spend the whole night texting your girlfriend or on the phone with her. When it gets to the point you are ready to introduce your long distance love to your friends, do so carefully. Don’t make your friends hate you by putting them on the back-burner for your romance or not being present when with them.

Also, make sure you are present in all you do in your everyday life. Do not let your work or schoolwork slip because your long distance communications get out of control.

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Whatever you do, don’t get passive aggressive and keep it positive

If he doesn’t text at the time he was supposed to, don’t ignore him when he does text in retaliation. If she doesn’t call you back in 15 minutes like she promised, don’t be mad when she calls you back two hours later. Stuff happens. Relying on technology is hard. Expecting everyday life to revolve around your daily phone call is unrealistic. Don’t play the game of who called who last. Just do it. Just call. Don’t worry about who cares more than who. The quickest way to kill a long distance romance is to play these kinds of games and then say things like, “Oh. I thought you didn’t care anymore” or “Just figured you’d forgotten me.”

Making a long distance relationship go the long haul is hard enough, but if your partner begins to associate you with feelings of guilt, they will start disassociating with you and leaning towards things which make them happy.

Hearing from you must be a joy, not a burden. If every time they get off the phone, they feel relief. If every conversation with you is negative or makes them feel worse than they did before talking with you, they will begin to drift away from you.

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Make plans to be together…Permanently

This is one thing that must be said for long distance relationships. They only work if you both look at it as a temporary obstruction to your love. If your attitude is more “Let’s see if this works out…” Chances are, it may not.

Long distance relationships work because two people were very committed to the relationship’s success. Part of that success is making plans for how the two of you can actually be together and will accept the sometimes-painful realities that come with making the jump towards living near each other.

It’s going to mean someone may have to leave a job they love, move from a place they love, give up their friends, their family and everything they ever knew to start a life with the other person.

At the beginning of the relationship, when infatuation is in full force, you truly believe time nor distance will come between you. Thinking about these realities is way too hard and sometimes the very process of uprooting your life can seem daunting and impossible. It can be done, but must be done with a back-up plan in mind.

Sometimes things don’t work out and you can find yourself stuck in the new locale with nobody on your side and no friends to lean on. Life is a learning experience, though, so don’t be afraid to take the plunge if you know this person is someone you can’t stand not being without anymore. Be cautious, be wise, and then take that step and be brave. If it doesn’t work out, you’ve gotten to see more of the world and have new experiences to add to the amazing story of your life.



Loving a Woman After Abuse

You found her. She’s hypnotizing. Everything you always wanted. She is kind, loving… and so heartbreakingly fragile. Loving her scares you. She’s not like other girls you’ve loved before. She’s been through something. She’s a walking contradiction; Sometimes strong, but sometimes weak. She’s cool like the surface of a pond, but sometimes anger comes like a storm over her horizon with white hot lightning tears indicating her inner turmoil.

She may confess that her last relationship was tough, but she may have a hard time explaining why. She doesn’t know how to explain the depth of the trauma she has experienced, yet you can see it in her haunted eyes. There’s so much in her soul. She has so much to say, but can never put it into words.

She wants to love again, but she’s terrified.

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She wants to love with an open heart and no reservations. She wants to jump out of the plane and feel the exhilaration of falling in love, but she needs to know her parachute  will open. She needs to know you’ll bring her safely back down to the ground after the rush. What she needs most, right now, is a protector, but at the same time she’s afraid. The last time someone offered to protect her, he hurt her immeasurably. Imagine the horror of following someone’s lead in jumping out of the plane…only to find you are pulling your ripcord and nothing breaks your fall?

Be patient. Time will heal all her wounds. Stay by her side until the fear subsides.

She doesn’t want to believe all men are the same

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She thinks you are amazing. But she has seen where this leads time and again. Girl friends assure her all men are the same. She will be hurt again. It’s in books, movies, everywhere – “All men are dogs”. She remembers the horrors of infidelities, the crimes of the heart, and believes the profile is true. In a hopeless state, she believes all men are destined to hurt her. When someone lies about their every move for a period of years and has numerous inconsistencies with the truth, it rattles capacity to trust to the very core.

Be consistent. Prove the theory is wrong. Admire and emulate good men. Admire the type of men you wish to be. Tell her what you admire about them and why you don’t want to pattern yourself after all the jerks she (and her friends) have known before. Be where you say you are going to be, with who you are say you are going to be with, doing what you say you are going to be doing.


Be a man of your word and possess integrity or get out of her life. In protecting her heart, it’s really that simple. Be honest or be gone.

She needs to know you. REALLY know you. So she can feel safe.

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For too long, she was locked in the dark. She gave freely of herself. She gave everything she had to give, longing for reciprocation. Instead, she received deceit, lies, anger, and abuse. Words have so much power – The power to break; The power to heal.

Be open. Nothing will soothe the savagery of a woman fraught with fear like calm, open consistent communication. Talk with her. Give her what she never had before – A crying shoulder, encouragement, honesty, an environment in which the both of you can communicate openly and without fear. You must be open with her because he wasn’t. She needs to know the truth of you because he surrounded himself with lies. She will know it’s real when she finally knows someone’s soul. Let her know yours.

She wants you to believe her.

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Good people are objective. They are slow to believe bad things they hear about others.

When speaking about the ending of a relationship, we are often cautioned, “There is HIS side, HER side…and the TRUTH, which usually lies between the two.” However, in an abusive relationship, there IS a wrong party. The most damaging thing you can do is doubt her. You are going to hear a lot about her ex. Some of it may sound completely crazy. As a good person, you will be in shock that a human would do such things to another human being. Before you doubt this woman, watch your nightly news. There are crazy people in this world and they do crazy things. It’s not just on TV.

The closer the two of you get, the more you will hear about him and this may be conflicting for you. Why is it that the more you love her to help ease her mind and make her forget him…The more she cries and talks about how he hurt her?

It’s because she needs to in order to heal. You are peeling back layers of the onion. She is realizing the way she lived wasn’t right. She is realizing you are treating her the way she deserved to be treated all along. With every consistent step she takes beside you, she realizes it really was abuse. A woman who has been truly abused will often try to avoid that word or think that other women had it worse than her. “Abuse” to many is equal to being beaten or physically assaulted. However, domestic abuse of psychological nature can be on par and sometimes even worse than physical abuse.

Be trusting. You need to believe her. Hearing about her ex’s faults and worst qualities is not comfortable. There is a notorious stigma that talking about your exes is bad or means you’re not over them, but with abuse – It’s crucial that she talk and reason out what just happened to her. It is trauma. You would not tell a 9/11 survivor to “get over it”. When she breaks down and tells you something, confirm her fears and tell her, “That is abusive. I would never do that to you.” She needs confirmation and then assurance that the nightmare is over…and time to process it.

She needs encouragement.

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Women who come from abusive relationships often neglect themselves, their hopes and dreams to be whatever their abusive partner demands they be. Chances are, somewhere down deep inside, she had dreams too. She had a person she always wanted to be and had to put it on hold. This happens in normal, non-abusive relationships, too. But in an abuse situation, she was not only discouraged from pursuing her own greatness. She was probably also told she was not good at things. She was told she was a failure. She was laughed at and ridiculed. Abusers take the very things you hold dear and turn them against you. Yes, there are people who are really that evil.

Be encouraging. Notice things she is good at doing. Compliment her. Ask her if she ever thought about doing things professionally. Notice what makes her eyes light up. Notice what she’s happy doing. Help her realize her own path again. Remind her of all her dreams and help get her the things she needs to begin pursuing her dreams again. Encourage her to be the person she was meant to be before another person sabotaged her life.

She needs gifts to be given for no reason whatsoever.

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“Why don’t abused women just leave? If someone is so bad, why not walk away?” Abusers are powerful in their toxicity. They know just how to reel their target in. When they know you are about to leave, they give you everything you always wanted. They are kind, loving, generous and will pull stunts straight out of ‘The Bachelor’ to keep a woman under their spell. It’s very hard to walk away. The man who never brought you flowers suddenly shows up with dozens of roses. They buy you what they know you’ve always wanted. The gifts come pouring in. They assault your center of guilt. If someone bought you what you always wanted – It’s hard, if not impossible to turn down in that mental state. It also fools everyone around you.
“How can you say he never loved you? He filled your house with roses!”
“How can you say he didn’t support your dreams? He bought you a guitar!”

An abuser will treat a woman horribly and then reward her like a queen. Gifts become her idea of love. It becomes all she has to look forward to. Gifts mean LOVE. It’s a hard association to break. With an abuser, it also means, “I did something wrong. You caught me. But I LOVE you.”

Be sincere. The happiest day of her life will come when you give her a big gift and she realizes you did no wrong and the gift you gave came completely from the heart because you truly love her. When realization hits, look for the happy tears when she realizes even gifts can be given without expectations or the trade-off of an abuser’s wrongdoing, but out of pure thankfulness, love and honesty.

She’s come so far already

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In leaving, she’s made a huge accomplishment. Only someone who faced abuse firsthand might realize what a huge accomplishment this is. She had to finally reach a point where all false promises, gifts, pressures of society and family to stay, glares of the judgmental, fears of violence, etc. were no longer enough to hold her down and freedom meant leaving; The chance to satisfy her very soul. She made a firm decision. She wanted happiness in life before she was gone from this earth. She decided life was too short to live in such fear, pain and misery and realized it would be better to be alone than be lied to, cheated on, discarded and made to feel like a burden.

Be proud of her. This woman is a survivor. She wants you to realize although she suffered and is stull suffering the after-effects, that she is nobody’s victim. She is a phoenix rising from the ashes. She doesn’t want to be viewed as a battered woman Public Service Announcement crouched in a corner crying. She wants you to view her as a warrior and realize that the tears she cries are not crocodile tears or tears of self pity. She wants you to realize how strong she is and not treat her like a victim, even though she still cries at night sometimes. She wants you to realize how far she’s come. She wants you to know that even the strong cry. She doesn’t want you to view her as weak. She wishes you could see a movie of what she has been through. She simply wants your respect.

She needs you to do your homework.

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Loving an abused woman comes with homework. This isn’t the young love of your twenties fraught with petty jealousies. Unfortunately, it’s a love that comes with some baggage so she needs you to know what you’re getting into. Abuse makes women into researchers. Just like you, they may be confounded with the question, “WHY would someone DO such a thing to someone?” Realize she has been told the problem has been her all along. Then something happened to open her eyes. She is learning daily about why abusers do what they do. She will be fascinated. The knowledge that she had such a low opinion of herself beaten into her mind by someone else will be angering. She’s not crazy. She’s not hellbent on vengeance. She just finally understands.

Be studious. While she is doing her own research, she needs you to do your own about her. Like you are doing now. She needs you to understand, psychologically, just why she may be the way she is right now and accept these quirks. Some part of her still fears she brought this all on herself or, scarier yet, that he has made her a clone of himself.

She needs you to know she will make loving her worth it.

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Despite what a pain in the ass she is right now…She promises, loving her will be the best thing you’ve ever done. Because she’s been in the dark, she will appreciate the light ten times more. Because she suffered in a cave of despair, the sunlight on her skin will feel a thousand times more glorious. You may think you are just an average guy and nothing special, but compared to the hell she endured, you are the most beautiful thing she’s ever seen or experienced. If you’ve ever wanted to be loved for your soul, she is the one who is capable of doing it. If you’ve never been the one to have anyone completely enraptured by you, she will be the one who lets you finally experience the full impact of ravenous love. Women who have faced abuse, rejoice in love on a scale unmatched. They have wandered through the desert, found an oasis and plan on never leaving because they know how big that desert is and how rare a genuine person is.

Be joyful. There are a lot of women out there who would not appreciate all that you are and take you for granted. Only the woman who has been through hell can appreciate heaven. And she will treat you with all the respect you deserve for your consistent, honest, genuine love.

She needs you.

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Even though it goes against all sensibility after having gone through an abusive relationship and having had “co-dependent” slapped on her. She is force fed that she needs no man. This is true. She can heal on her own and be just fine, but being with you is the next big step. You can only know you are completely healed when you can love another person with all your heart and soul without fear again. It’s another level of healing and she is putting her fragile heart out there on the line again…Because something tells her maybe you are the real deal. Maybe this time she can rest.

Be careful with her heart. If you take anything away from this article. Take this: Be the man she needs. This is no ordinary woman. This is a woman who stood in the fire and didn’t back down. This is a woman with a scarred heart doing her best to keep her belief in love alive. She is a naked soul who now knows looks, money, status, or any amount of lies built around someone is not who they are. If you are willing to help her fight through her storm, there are calmer waters ahead on a sea where the water blends with the sky horizon where a beautiful peace exists for you both.

Why Does My Wife Hate Me?

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Before she turned cold, she used to make you feel like the greatest man alive. Now she makes you feel stupid and misunderstood. “Nothing I do or say is ever right!” When you try to talk to her, she completely shuts down. “My wife is pulling away from me…” It’s happening, but you don’t know how to stop it.

It sounds crazy. Your rational side is saying, “How could she hate me? She married me didn’t she?” But it’s not your imagination. Something is “off” – Big time. 

Maybe It’s NOT you…

What does she have going on, right now, in her life? It’s very possible personal stress is impacting her relationship with you. Motherhood, jobs, a falling out with a friend, health stress, low self esteem, depression, anxiety, hormonal changes… Sometimes it really has nothing to do with you and everything to do with outside stressors.

She may be going through something she has no idea how to tell you about. Acknowledge that she doesn’t seem like herself and you’re wondering if there is something going on in her life she would like to talk about.

If she says, “I don’t want to talk about it!” – Back off. Barring it isn’t the time or place to be talking about an issue, it could mean you did or said something that upset her. Maybe she’s still mad and is smart enough to know talking about it could force her into saying something she will regret. Let her work through her emotions first.

Tone is everything. If she sounds emotional, it may be something she isn’t ready to discuss.

You violated one of her bottom lines.

Occam’s Razor (“The simplest explanation is often the correct one”) can sometimes be the best way to diagnose a problem. Let’s start with the obvious – Did you do ANYTHING callous, insensitive or cruel? Cheating? Make blatantly negative comments about her appearance? Insult her in some obvious way?

Well, then stop reading. Of course she’s pissed! An honest appraisal of your behaviors will go a long way. Think honestly – Was there a single incident or have you been disrespecting your wife over a period of time you may not have thought about?

Did you violate what, for her, may have been a bottom line?

Meaning some invisible boundary every person has (e.g. If a man hits her – She made up her mind a long time ago that she would leave. If a man cheated on her – She also has drawn the line in the sand that she will leave).

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How well do you know your wife? What are her expectations of you? Some people are more sensitive than others. You may feel some offhand comment you made or boorish behavior is completely acceptable but your wife may disagree.

For every person, bottom lines exist. It is up to you to know your wife. She should also know your opinions. Most people do not do this before marriage. They learn as they go…and sometimes it’s too late after they find out they have done something their spouse deems unforgivable.

You may believe looking at porn is normal. She may be disgusted by the behavior. This is a great example of a GRAY AREA. It’s very possible nobody is right or wrong. It’s a matter of opinion. Try a new approach. Be genuinely curious. Ask her what her opinion is and why she thinks that way. Be clear you are not asking to criticize, but to better understand her viewpoints and be genuine in listening and considering her thoughts.

The thing you must remember if you are doing something that harms your relationship – Is it more important to you than your relationship?

We were always told we should never change for anyone, but relationships are all about compromise. The dilemma also exists that you can never 100% know a person and sometimes…people change of their own accord.

If you are willing to change to save the relationship – Apologize earnestly for hurting her and make a firm course of action to change. Never say you will do something unless you mean it. Continued broken promises are absolutely lethal to a marriage.

She feels like she can’t tell you what is bothering her.

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If she’s suddenly cold with you and won’t tell you why, it may be because she thinks you should already know why she’s upset. It’s also possible she does not feel emotionally prepared for confrontation over the issue, or she simply does not wish to communicate openly with you because she does not feel you will listen or will criticize her. These hurts can come across as coldness, aloofness or outright anger.

Are you easy to communicate with? Do you tend to get angry when approached with criticism or opinions you disagree with? Do you lose your temper or “blow up”? Will you immediately go on the defensive and insinuate her opinions are wrong, stupid or crazy? Will you play devil’s advocate and contradict everything she is trying to tell you?

If she does not feel listened to, understood, or feel that you are making any attempt whatsoever to understand her, she may begin to believe the relationship is too much effort. She may begin to confide in someone else.

If you do not provide an open, safe communication space for your wife to talk about ANYTHING without feeling wrong or stupid every time she opens her mouth, someone else eventually will.

It’s well known that men often cheat for physical reasons and women because they feel an emotional attachment to someone else whom makes them feel understood. It’s a situation which can be avoided with attentive, open communication.

Want to open up communication? Approach her at a time when you’re both not busy. You may say something such as, “I love you. I care about our relationship and feel like I’ve done something to deeply hurt you. From now on, I want to be more open with our communication and listen without criticizing what you have to say. I’m sorry if I have made you feel criticized in the past. I want to understand you and create a relationship where we can talk about anything.”

When she feels like you value what she has to say, the floodgates of communication will open.

She has given up on you or no longer wants to be with you.

This one hurts to have to say. But it happens. When a woman still wants to talk to you, it’s a good sign. If you begin living like roommates passing in the hallways…You’re entering dangerous territory. The longer this goes on, the further apart the two of you will drift. Instead of looking for the good in you and reasons to stay, she may actively begin looking for reasons to leave.

When it’s this bad, it hurts. You can’t make her smile. You can’t make her laugh. No amount of gifts or promises of open communication might be working.

She may be talking about pursuing a life that might exclude you and all attempts you’ve  made seem to be too little too late, especially if she begins to look at the opportunities of new love or companionship outside the marriage.

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This is the stage where anything could happen so don’t blow your chances. Don’t become more possessive, clingy, demanding, or create an environment at home where she feels smothered by someone she previously felt cared very little about her. Over-caring too late in the game can backfire.

The worst thing you can do when your wife is showing outright hostility towards you is planning romantic vacations, sending flowers, or other tokens of symbolic romance. These things are for the good times. Not something you only pull out when the marriage is in trouble. It’s a hollow gesture and you will both know it.

Love is like a bar of soap – Hold on too tightly,
and it will slip right out of your hands.

Don’t put the focus on winning back her love. Put the focus on making yourself worth loving…She may realize what a catch you are before it’s too late and you become her loss. Begin working on yourself. If you’ve let your grooming habits slip, it’s time to step up the game. Live your life to produce the best results for you. Go to the gym. Partake in new hobbies. Meet new friends. Start smiling more. Start doing things that are proven life enhancers and stay away from behaviors that are self destructive.

You can’t force your wife to see your worth. You can’t force her to live in misery with you. But you can appraise yourself and make yourself more valuable. Be who you were always meant to be – The very best version of yourself. You may just make your wife realize why she fell in love with you all over again.

She’s just a bitch

There is no other way to say this. If you evaluated your own actions and behaviors, have been the model perfect husband, and she does not appreciate you – The problem may not be yours.

For most of this article, it’s been assumed you were both reasonable people or that maybe, possibly YOU were the unreasonable one. Now it’s time to look at the cold, hard facts – Maybe she’s not worth it. If that’s the case, brother…Yeah, you’re going to feel some sadness for all those little things you thought indicated she was your dream.

But maybe she’s amazing in a thousand little ways that just aren’t meant for you. If you can’t fix communication with her and nothing’s going to change, life is too short to be with someone who makes you feel worthless. Go out there and find someone who can’t get enough of you.

If your wife truly does hate you, love yourself even more. She fell in love with you once. Someone will love you again. But there is nothing more irresistible than a man who is content with himself.