Should I Accept Him...Or Try To Change Him?

How many times in your life did you find yourself facing the question: Should I accept him the way he is, should I try to change him, or should I just leave? What are some of the factors to consider when making this decision? Do we always have to know at first sight that he is "the one” or can we allow ourselves to ponder on it for a while?

Many women look back at their past relationships and say: “I can’t believe I stayed for so long after everything he did to me. I don’t know what I was waiting for.” Just as many confess that they didn’t take the guy seriously because he had flaws, but later regretted letting him go: “He really cared about me. I don’t know what I was looking for.”

The key to making the right decision in this case is to remember what’s really important. The truth is, many of our values or standards are created by our cultural conditioning and have little to do with our deep desires.

“He is making half of what I’m making” – Why is this important? Do you think he is lazy? Do you think he will take advantage of you? Are you worried what your friends and family are going to say? (That’s a big one, by the way.)

“He is not my type” – In what way? Have you defined “your type”? When we look at people through the prism of our pre-conceived notions we run the risk of missing what’s truly important.

“He does things that irritate me” – Is that something you can accept? Do you have habits that may be challenging for him to put up with?

What would happen if you just gave him a chance; just accepted him the way he is?

Would that widen your horizons and open your heart; or would it make you sacrifice yourself? – That’s the essence of your question.

There are some things we can’t accept. These are usually things that go against our core values or violate our personal boundaries: dishonesty, disloyalty, physical or emotional abuse. You have to identify 3 to 5 deal-breakers – things that go against your sense of self. If you are putting up with them, it feels that you are sacrificing yourself.

If your relationship has at least one of these issues, it is not viable and must be interrupted. Realize that by waiting for something to change miraculously by itself you are only losing your chances to ever be truly happy.

Regarding your hope that he will change – it can only happen if he is committed and values you enough to do what it takes to transform. The intention and commitment must come from him. I leave you to be the judge for how likely it is to happen.

In the end, you have to be very much in tune with yourself in order to make the right decision. If you are clear on what your true values are and open to growth by accepting the other person the way he is, even if he is not quite what you expected, you will make the right choice.