There is an epidemic of one-sided relationships. Relationships void of reciprocation, give and take, and collaboration. These relationships are burdensome, and they appear in any type of relationship. Whether it’s a friendship, business partnership, intimate relationship, and yes, even familial relationships, many women are carrying the weight of a relationship, or many relationships, on their back.

For any relationship to work, there has to be teamwork, collaboration, and a willingness from both (or all) parties to want to make the relationship work. However, the effort and energy given to a relationship isn’t always equal. Whether you’re the employee working overtime, going the extra mile, staying late and coming in early but not receiving adequate compensation, or the partner who’s always sacrificing, compromising or giving to someone who never returns the favor, you’re part of this epidemic.

There are women who, after investing so much time, energy, and emotion into someone or something, have a hard time walking away because they’re emotionally invested. However, when what’s at stake is your happiness, your peace, your sanity, and more importantly, your health, it’s worth it to walk away and choose yourself over this relationship.

Choosing yourself is not giving up. Choosing your happiness does not make you a bad person nor does it make you wrong. But, choosing to give to people and situations that are sucking you dry, draining you of not only your time and energy, but your finances as well, is holding you back.

Somewhere along the lines, your dedication, your generosity, your caring nature has placed you on the back burner, and the people you have chosen to give to are reaping the benefits. Selfish people, leeches, narcissists, users, whatever you’d like to label them as are surviving because of you. Because of the energy and effort you keep giving to them, even when they give nothing in return.

Your relationships will not work when you are the only one giving to them. You are giving to a situation, or situations, that are not beneficial to you. You are investing in something that is not giving you a return on your investment. You are holding on to hope that should have been gone a long time ago, trying to see the potential in this person when they’ve shown you countless times who they are. Believe them. Believe what they show you and not the image of them you’ve concocted in your mind. No matter how much you may want someone to change, or believe naively that you have the ability to change them, you can’t. You do not have the ability to change anyone but yourself.

Fear of being alone has kept many women (men, too) in one-sided relationships. But, if we’re being honest, you’ve been alone in this relationship all this time, so there wouldn’t be much of a difference.

If you’ve found yourself in a one-sided relationship, one where you’re doing all the work and someone else is benefitting from your energy, let it go. Drop the burden. Reclaim your time, energy, and most of all, your power. 

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