You are not an option. You are not on hold. You are not on the backburner. You are not up next. You are not a backup plan.
We all know this, right?
So why do we find ourselves in situations where we've clearly compromised ourselves?
We put up with mixed signals and being strung along early in a relationship because we want to be that "chill" person. We want to play it "cool."
We have this strange belief that once things get a bit more serious, all that nonsense will drop. We think we'll become their number one, they’ll finally open their eyes and decide that we're the one who convinced them that they DO want a relationship.
But then three or six months later you’re still their backup plan. Nothing has changed and you’re still being strung along.
We need to remind ourselves that we are NOT someone's backup plan.
If someone tells you they're not ready for a relationship… believe them.
If you feel someone is stringing you along… they are.
With a few exceptions, if you feel like you’re someone’s backup plan… you probably are.
If someone tells you they aren’t looking for a relationship… believe them!
Don’t overthink it and assume there’s levels to a comment like that and it’s really just a cry for help. Don't think there's hidden meaning and they really just want you to help them open up, that they don’t really mean it or that it’s just something they said to protect themselves.
No. Believe them. It’s going to save you a lot of time and a lot of energy.
For every one person who says I’m NOT looking for someone… there is someone who IS.
Between those two options... where do you think your time and energy is best spent?
But let’s go deeper.
When someone says they aren't looking for a relationship BUT they’re willing to keep things casual with you and see where things go, what they’re really saying is they have more to offer BUT they're purposefully holding it back.
They're cool with giving you 50% because you’re cool with accepting 50%.
Think about that.
THAT is what you’re accepting when you’re ok with sticking it out with someone who treats you like a backup plan.
If someone has made it clear to you that they have more to give but they’re not willing to give it… have the self respect to take your talents elsewhere. If you’re their backup plan, leave as their backup plan.
We know what this looks like to be strung along - they only plan a date when you ask them to. They only text, no calls. They talk about future plans but never act on them. They tease the idea of commitment or a relationship but they never take action to make it happen. You’re just perpetually in a state of limbo.
Hype yourself up by thinking about how much you’ve grown.
Think about your previous partners and how those relationships came and went.
Think about the all the things you’ve healed from or overcome in your life. You’re telling me that you’ve experienced all that - you’ve triumphed, you’ve grown, you've healed, you’ve found your place, your confidence, your inner peace… and now you’re going to be OK with being someone’s backup plan?
Ohhhh heck no!
You deserve so much more than being strung along by someone.
You deserve so much more than only feeling appreciated occasionally.
You deserve so much more than needing to change someone - what they want or what they see/don't see in you.
Of course, take time to check your feelings because it could very well be your insecurities or unhealed trauma that's making you feel this way.
Take time to communicate with them - maybe they’ve been holding back because they misinterpreted YOUR intentions. That happens.
But once you've done that and if you don’t like what you see and you still feel like their backup plan... then you probably are.
You didn’t do anything wrong and you're not at fault... but you should believe how you feel.
Believe what they say and believe what they do. When you feel they have 100% to give but they're only willing to give you 50%... that’s all you need to know.