He Says He’s Changed. Should I Stay and Try to Fix Things?

Dr. Wendy Walsh Dr. Wendy Walsh • 9/25/14

Reader Question:

This guy and I have been dating for almost a year. We have patches of really good times and times where we constantly fight.

He makes me feel very low about myself and I’m weary if I can trust him. We have been on a break for about two weeks now and he says he has changed.

I have met this new guy and he’s really nice and sweet. He knows about my situation and is sticking around, but I don’t know if I want to throw everything away.

Should I stay and try to fix things or start a new beginning?

-Kelsi (Kansas)

Dr. Wendy Walsh’s Answer:

Dear Kelsi,

First of all, no one can make you have feelings you don’t already have. They can only amplify them.

Being with this guy seems to be confirming a thought you have that you “are very low,” but the “really good times” bring you a kind of hope that you might be able to love yourself more.

So let me break this down for you in one simple concept: You are in love with hope.

You hope the good times will always last (which is kind of unrealistic), and you hope you won’t always feel bad about yourself.

I’ll tell you this: When you change your thoughts about yourself, you’ll become very clear about whether waiting for this guy to change is the right thing to do.

People who care about and respect themselves tend to move away from people who hurt them.

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