Are You Guilty of Staying in a Bad Relationship?
A new survey finds a majority of us are staying in relationships that we do not find fulfilling, and even despite our partners sometimes cheating, lying or treating us poorly.
Do you find yourself in this situation, but remaining with your significant other?
The study by YouGov found 6-in-10 people stayed in a bad relationship that did not make them happy.
Rutgers University Professor Jennifer Theiss said there are a number of reasons why people are staying in a seemingly hopeless situation.
There may be structural commitments, such as kids, a house, or joint possessions that could make it less expensive to just stay together.
Sometimes, it could just be complacency.
"Being in that relationship, we get used to the partner and it's easier to stay than it is to go," Theiss said. "Maybe I'll just stay in this relationship because it's a known commodity and I don't have to worry about what else could be out there."
It could be a poor self-image where a partner is treated badly and it becomes a part of their identity. Then, they end up believing this is how they are supposed to be treated.
Another common reason for staying is fear of what else is out there.
"Maybe the grass isn't greener on the other side," she said. "Maybe if I break up with this person, I'll find somebody else and it'll be just as bad."
The study found the almost 1-in-4 people have been lied to and stayed with their partner, while 14 percent put up with cheating.
Theiss believes that there is a certain positivity and nobility to being able to work through adversity and not just cutting bait at the first hint of drama. It can also be a positive in some cases.
"I think it can actually be strengthening to the relationship to work through those things if both parties are willing to do that," she explained.
But, she urges people to stand up for themselves if major transgressions and cheating occur and there are repeated negative incidents. There is a tipping point when things are spiraling out-of-control and leading to an unsatisfying relationship. That's when you have to speak up, she says.
"Relationships aren't always going to be sunshine and roses. Sometimes relationships go through a rough patch."