Jan 17, 2024 in Life Coaching

Are You Being a Fool for Love?

Does love make you accept what you know is unacceptable?

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Well, are you? We have all heard quotes and song lyrics about being a fool for love or being a fool in love. 

According to Merriam-Webster’s definition, a fool is a person lacking in judgment. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to be a fool in any situation, let alone for love or while I’m in love.  Yet, we have all found ourselves doing just that…being a fool for someone we love. This just doesn’t apply to romantic love; it includes the love we have for our family and friends as well.

Why? Why do we assume that loving a person has to include being tolerant of things and situations we would not tolerate when love isn’t a factor? We allow those closest to us to hurt us the most and that needs to change. In every relationship, no matter the connection, our own needs, and expectations have a right to be respected and met.

Another saying is you can’t choose your family. That is correct, we can’t. Once we become adults, we do have the right to limit and control who has access to us. This includes our time, our generosity, and our love. There are people that were raised by selfish, narcissistic parents.

As children, we often must live with the hand that we’re dealt, but not forever. As an adult, you have the choice of who you want to be involved in your life and in what capacity. You do not have to put up with parents, siblings, or other family members that for instance:

·  Put you down or hurt your feelings, but say it is all in fun.

·  Doesn't respect your time.

·  Sow conflict with other family members.

·  Make you feel bad about feeling bad.

·  Give you the silent treatment.

·  Won’t let you step outside of the family narrative…BUT WE’RE FAMILY

·  You’re ALWAYS the problem.

·  Belittling you or your accomplishments.

The list goes on and on. These actions mimic toxic romantic relationships because they are just as toxic if not more so. Speaking of romantic relationships, here are some signs that the connection is toxic and if you’re allowing some or all of these behaviors, you just may be a fool for love.

·  Patterns of disrespect.

·  Controlling behaviors.

·  Frequent lying.

·  Devalues your feelings.

·  Isolates you from friends and family.

By now you should be thinking that all these examples could apply to romantic, platonic, and familiar relationships because they are all examples of toxic behavior that can be exhibited by ANYONE. Anyone can be toxic, and it shouldn’t matter what title they hold in your life that makes the behavior okay. Unconditional love does not equate to unconditional tolerance. Too often people assume that it does. It doesn’t. You should not be afraid to set boundaries, be independent, and know when to sever ties. One thing that will not be allowed in 2022 is accepting toxic behavior simply because we love the person. We will realize that we love ourselves MORE and we deserve to grace people that display mutual respect with our presence.  I’m not saying it’s easy cutting off a toxic friend or family member but believe me when I tell you it’s worth it.

At the core of all healthy relationships, there needs to be healthy communication, trust, respect, and honesty. If you have a relationship, no matter the type, that doesn’t give you these core things, it is time to reevaluate the relationship.

In my life coaching career, I have referred many clients to therapy to deal with the lasting damage of toxic relationships with family members. Sometimes a person needs help or to talk and there’s nothing wrong with that. Do whatever you feel is necessary to be able to make the necessary changes in your life.

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