The Ongoing Power Struggle In Relationships

The power struggle in relationships is never ending. Before people officially start dating and after they break up, it is still a struggle for power.

Think about all the power struggle that goes into the beginning of a relationship. Whether you are conscious of it or not. You are trying to maintain your cool, trying to maintain the upper hand and calling the shots.

This is where the game playing comes in. Maybe you are the one that pretends to be busy so you don’t seem too available. Maybe you are too available and make yourself the one that does all the chasing. Maybe you always make the first move. Maybe you choose to date multiple people as a move to protect yourself so that you don’t have to get your emotions too involved. People play all kinds of games of all kinds of varieties.

And then comes the relationship. I know many people that hold back their true feelings because they feel like they will lose their power. People don’t show their weaknesses and vulnerabilities and are afraid to be their whole self because they think that will be too scary.

Then comes the breakup, and the period of time where you don’t speak. For the relationships that were big enough, important enough, and ended friendly enough to become friends down the line. Or perhaps you lead lives that cannot avoid each other. And this is the real power struggle. We never want to be the one to speak first, don’t show your true feelings, don’t tell the truth. Don’t be sad, move on and get over it fast and get into a happy relationship first. This declares the winner of the breakup, therefore the person with the most power.

How silly all of this is. Especially when I put it all in writing.

Somewhere in society, we have been taught that power is important and this is how you maintain power in a relationship. Apparently, distance and coolness keeps you in power.

What is so sad is to realize that the most powerful thing a person can do is act from their own power, their own truth. Do what feels right to them, and be honest to themselves. Showing vulnerability with honesty is powerful. Expressing true feelings is powerful.

It doesn’t matter what the other person thinks about you. It is what you think about yourself. Β I know when I am speaking from my heart I feel at rest and peaceful. Power comes from inside. Not from the validation and response of another person.

We also need to remember and accept that we cannot control how the other person will respond. No matter how calculated we are and how well practiced with our cool responses. Everyone is going to react differently, they may not play by our individual rules. So this seems even sillier to me as a reason why we should try to base our power on other people. Why should we care how we appear to another person?

It comes back to how you feel. Check within yourself, how do you feel? Do you feel powerful or weak? Act on the power. No matter what anyone else thinks, at least you felt powerful. That is all that really matters at the end of the day.


10 thoughts on “The Ongoing Power Struggle In Relationships

  1. I think a lot of times in relationships we act on how we want our partner to respond, not how we truly feel. It’s difficult to put your heart out there knowing that the outcome may not be the one you want. However, I think ultimately acting on our feelings rather than trying to dictate the outcome of a relationship (fight, breakup, etc.) puts us in a much better place in the long run.

  2. Great post!
    How do you determine who is into the relationship more? I have certainly given dates more than one chance, even though the first date wasn’t great. What if the guy is really into it? Is it worth that second shot? Can’t a relationship drag out that way?

    • Thank you Margy! Good question. I think the bigger question is how do YOU feel? Are you into it? Are you open to learning more? Are you not sure, but open to giving it a try? Or are you just not interested at all. You can only control and be aware of your own feelings, and act on those. If you take care of your feelings, he is responsible for his (and you are definitely not responsible for his). If you’re into it and so is he and you go on another date, take it from there. If only one of you is into it, then really what’s the point?

  3. PREACH!!!! Totally agreed, it’s crazy how our culture completely condones this manipulative (seemingly mental now that you put it in words) form of relationships… Easier said than done, but in future relationships for myself I’m going to try to be as honest as possible and if they like it? Then fuck them! πŸ™‚

  4. After a first or second date, what do you think an acceptable reach back out timeline is?
    It never bothers me when a guy gets in touch with me the next day…only if I liked the date, that is πŸ™‚

    • There are no “rules” anymore and with texting being such a big thing all the rules for contact have flown out the window. For some people, they prefer communication early and often. I’m more laid back, I have a lot going on in my life. There also is no reason why you can’t say something to him.

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