Thursday 25 February 2021
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newtimes - 7 days ago

Why is emotional balance important in a relationship?

Rogers came to realise he was truly exhausting his girlfriend after months of dating her. He had always wondered why she fought constant mood swings, till later when he came to realise that it was his constant dumping of emotions on her that always sent her in that mood. He says he never opened up when something was bothering him in their relationship, and this always troubled her a lot. But instead of irritating him, she would do all she could to ensure that he was okay. He, however, now understands how damaging this is to her and he says he is doing his best to be there for her as well.  Relationship experts explain that the mutual emotional give-and-take is called emotional labour. To ensure that a relationship doesn’t fall apart, effort has to be put into it. Both partners need to play their part in order to keep it afloat, though this isn’t always the case. David Kabagambe almost called off his wedding late last year because he couldn’t handle his fiancée’s lack of care. He says, he was always the one to apologise even when he wasn’t in wrong, and this made him question their relationship. “I wondered the type of marriage we were going to build. I was the only one putting in all the effort for us to work and this bothered me a lot. I saw this as disrespect, at some point I thought she didn’t love me. But when I brought up the issue she apologised and we are now okay,” he says. Counsellor Robina Ziwa says though it’s hard for both partners to put in equal effort in building a relationship, it is necessary for both parties to make effort in sharing this load.  She notes that a person is assured to be emotionally drained if they are the ones to always talk things out after a fight, or compromise their boundaries more than the other. “It can be exhausting for a partner taking on most of the emotional labour in a relationship. But before it gets worse, you need to communicate and let your significant other understand how it makes you feel. This can be an eye opener because some people don’t realise they are hurting you when they do certain things in relationships,” she says. “At times our actions are a reflex of behaviours or patterns we are used to. So, if you keep quiet thinking they know or do what they do on purpose, this might not help and end up damaging you and the relationship,” she adds. She sheds more light citing that understanding that no relationship is perfect can also be helpful in dealing with this. “Don’t be quick to come to conclusions, someone might be good in some areas but weak in others, therefore appreciate that as you give them time to adjust. Don’t be quick to write them off, view your marriage or relationship as a work in progress. This will give you room to comprise with slipups,” she explains. The counsellor, however, emphasises the need for both parties in a relationship to make it their goal to be equally loving and supportive, noting that it is the best way to build a healthy and lasting relationship. “When its one partner to show that they need the other more, or care more for the relationship to work, this gives room for toxic behaviour. For example, one party may take the other for granted and this can turn out to be emotionally abusive.”


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