#051: We Know We Need Help, But We Keep Putting It Off!

Every day we speak with folks who are facing challenges in their polyamorous relationships. Some know they need help, but decide to put it off till later.

On today’s episode, we discuss why it can be hard to seek help, three reasons folks tend to ignore problems in their relationships until it’s too late, warning signs that you need help NOW, and where you can go to get it.

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This has been a heartbreaking week for us.

Every month we talk to dozens of people who are facing challenges in their polyamorous relationships. Some folks just need a quick piece of advice. Others we point to various resources. A number decide to work with us.

And then there are those who clearly do need guidance, but decide, for various reasons, to put it off till later.

Our experiment this week

This week we decided to go back and check in folks we spoke to this year and see how they were doing. The results of these calls were staggering.

We’re still trying to get a hold of a few people, but the bottom line is that almost all of the people who needed help but decided to wait for later broke up. Later never came.

These aren’t folks who had just started dating or been in their relationships for six months. We’re talking about people who were together for years. They live together. Share children together. Have years worth of shared memories and love and effort.

For us, the most heartbreaking, and frustrating, part of this is that these problems were solvable. They’re the same challenges that we help folks we work with overcome every day. The only thing separating the callers who broke up from those who now have incredible relationships is that the latter group made the decision to take action and fix their relationships instead of waiting.

This habit of delaying reaching out for help until it’s too late isn’t unique to poly people. It’s a trap that monogamous folks fall into as well. And there are a number of reasons why:

Why folks wait till it’s too late

First, it’s embarrassing to admit that our relationships aren’t what we want (or what others think they are). It’s a hit to our ego, particularly when we’re well known or invested in presenting a certain image to the world.

Second, we don’t typically make fixing our relationships a priority until it’s honest that something is horribly wrong. There are a number of things wrong with this approach, most notably that we don’t act this way in the rest of our lives. You don’t wait until you rear-end another car at a red light to get your brakes replaced, you do it when they start squeaking. Waiting until you’ve broken up (or are past the point of no return) to get relationship help is just as stupid.

So, why do people wait until it’s too late to seek help for their relationships? They tend to fall into one of three categories:

  1. Those who know they’re heading for disaster, but who have a good day here or there, and manage to convince themselves they can wait just a little longer.
  2. Folks who know there’s an underlying issue such as jealousy, resentment, or unmet needs, but don’t make fixing the problem a priority because it’s not leading to knock-down drag-out fights.
  3. Those who are making a major transition in their relationships that they know they don’t have the tools to navigate (they may have even tried and failed to navigate it before), but who decide to wait because they’re not having any problems at this very moment.

Do any of those resonate with you?

It’s time to get help if:

We know that it can be hard to know when to get help. So if you:

  • Recognize that you’re in one of those three situations we just described.
  • Have tried to resolve the same problem repeatedly with no lasting progress.
  • Recognize that you’re close to getting tapped out.
  • Are feeling unfulfilled, unhealthy or resentful.
  • Are about to impart on a journey for which you’re unequipped

Then the time to get help is now. Right now.

You don’t have to wait until you’re in one of those circumstances to ask for help. We talk to a lot of people who have great relationships and want to make them even better. But, if any of those points sound like you, you can’t afford to keep putting this off. What you’re doing hasn’t been working, and if you don’t make immediate changes there’s a good chance your relationship won’t last.

You need to do something different

Get help. Qualified help. It doesn’t have to be us, but find someone who is familiar with your lifestyle, who has experience in guiding people through the challenges you’re facing, and who has a proven record of success.
If you would like to talk about working with us, book a free call with our team and let’s discuss how you can transform your relationships starting today.

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