Changing Your Life or Lifestyle for Love
Jasbina Ahluwalia discusses with Abby Rodman, author of Should You Marry Him? A No-Nonsense, Therapist-Tested Guide to Not Screwing Up the Biggest Decision of Your Life someone changing their lifestyle vs. changing their life for love:
You addressed it by discussing ten make or break pre-marriage issues that popped up from your experience.
You mentioned that they come up in every troubled marriage or relationship that you’ve been privy to while working with so many couples and individuals. I’d like to discuss a few of the them.
I’m going to quote from the book. “To clarify, there is nothing inherently wrong with changing your life. Sometimes, it’s the best thing you can do for yourself. However, changing your lifestyle and/or your belief system to comply with someone else’s standards is another can of worms.” It’s very compelling.
Abby, can you tell us about that? Can you give an example or two of the different ways that you’ve seen this manifested and played out while working with couples or individuals?
First, I want to say that this book really is for anyone at any stage of life who is contemplating getting married. Whether it’s the first time you’re getting married or the fourth time, these questions largely do apply to everyone.
In terms of changing your life, as you read, there really isn’t anything inherently wrong with that. It can be a very good thing.
Changing Your Life or Lifestyle for Love – Red Flag
The red flag here is when you are being asked to change your life so dramatically by the person who you’re marrying. It starts to overshadow who you are, what direction you thought your life would go in or how you’ve lived your life to this point.
One example in the book is a client of mine who had married into an extraordinarily wealthy family. In return for all the perks that the lifestyle offered, and that her in-laws and new husband offered, she largely had to give up her connection to her own family.
That was one of the unspoken requirements of marrying into this very wealthy, very well-known family. As the years went by, she started to experience incredible regret.
- She missed her family.
- She missed her parents.
- She regretted that her parents had not had as much time with her children as her in-laws had.
That’s the kind of thing that I’m referring to.
If you’re being asked to change your life in a way that is going to eventually feel inherently uncomfortable for you or is going to change your life in a way that is unfamiliar to you, that is a red flag.
When something is non-negotiable, that’s a problem.
Knowing the difference between changing your life or lifestyle for love can be confusing for some people. Have you complied or committed to a relationship? How did it turn out? We want to hear your stories in the comments section below.
The above is an excerpt from Jasbina’s interview with Abby Rodman.
The entire interview transcript is at: Abby Rodman Interview – Should I Marry Him: A Guide Not to Screw Up
Listen to the entire interview on: Intersections Match Talk Radio – Jasbina’s Lifestyle Show
Listen to the entire interview on iTunes