In an ideal world, all relationships would be loving and respectful. But this isn’t Utopia – it’s real life. And unfortunately, there are way too many people who are in toxic relationships.
With a normal, healthy, loving, rational person, there will be no need to learn how to stand up for yourself in a relationship. But many people are psychologically and emotionally damaged. And because of that, they use tactics in relationships to try to control other people and have the upper hand.
Usually, these people are called narcissists. They are the kind of people who only think of themselves and have absolutely no empathy for other people. The control, manipulate, gaslight, and just overall mentally and emotionally abuse you.
And just so you know … NO ONE deserves to be treated that way!
I don’t care if the abuser is your boss, your spouse, your child, your parent, or your neighbor. Everyone deserves to be treated with respect.
But what if no one taught you how to stand up for yourself in a relationship? I mean, let’s face it – that’s not something that our parents usually teach us. Instead, they teach us to shut our mouths and to follow what they say.
As an online dating coach in Dayton, I know first-hand that there are many ways that you can learn how to stand up for yourself in a relationship – even if it’s someone that you’ve just started dating.
How to Stand Up for Yourself in a Relationship
1. Be brave.
Standing up for yourself can be scary – especially if you are intimidated by the other person. And maybe you’re not intimidated, but you know they hold power over you, such as your boss. But in order to learn how to stand up for yourself in a relationship, you have to gain some courage to take action.
2. Work on your self-esteem.
Many people who don’t know how to stand up for themselves in a relationship have low self-esteem. If you don’t believe in your own self-worth, then you will let people walk all over you. Write down all the good qualities you have and focus on why you are special… and why you deserve to be treated with respect.
3. Keep notes.
Abusers love to mess with your mind. In fact, they often make up lies but sound convincing about them. That’s why you need to keep notes as evidence. When they say or do something wrong or disrespectful, write it down. That way, the next time they accuse you of something, you can take out your evidence of your behavior (and theirs) to prove them wrong.
4. Be assertive.
You can’t be meek and mild when you are learning how to stand up for yourself in a relationship. You have to be assertive. But not aggressive. There’s a difference. Aggressive behavior is name-calling and physical abuse. That’s not what we’re talking about here.
5. Be logical and rational.
In order to be assertive, you need to be logical, rational, and calm. Present the evidence from your note-taking as if you were in a courtroom presenting the information to a jury. The more calm and rational you are, the more it disarms the other person.
6. Only tolerate respectful words and behaviors.
Whenever a person starts calling you bad names or says or does anything else that is disrespectful, tell them to stop. Say that you will not tolerate that language or behavior any more. Tell them that you deserve respect and you won’t allow anything else from now on.
7. Say no.
Just because someone asks or tells you to do something, that doesn’t mean you actually have to do it. You are your own person. You make your own decisions. Don’t allow other people to push you into something that you don’t want to do. Not only is it okay to say no, it’s NECESSARY.
8. Use assertive body language.
When you close your body up, such as when you cross your arms or legs, you are sending the message that you are weak and submissive. Instead, spread out your body and take up more space, which is a dominant move. Stand or sit up straight and let them know you mean business.
9. Role play.
Grab your best friend or a family member and get into a role play. Let them pretend to be the person you need to stand up to, and practice what to say and do. The more you role play, the better you will get at standing up for yourself.
Learning how to stand up for yourself in a relationship isn’t easy. But it all starts with recognizing that you need to do it and that you are worth it. I don’t care if you’re being played by someone while you’re online dating or if you’ve been married 50 years, you need to do it because you need to love yourself!
****If you need an online dating coach, dating coach, or relationship coach, especially if you live in Dayton, contact me today. I’d love to help you!****
Dr. Carol Morgan &
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