Is My Partner Right For Me?

IMG_4264Among the many questions that plague those suffering from relationship anxiety, the question “Is my partner right for me?” tops the list of last-night ruminations.

As with so many intrusive thoughts, we must first recognize that the question is coming from the ego, the part of ourselves that demands certainty and operates under a black-and-white mindset. Right implies wrong, which plays directly into the ego’s need for certainty and, thus, the illusion of safety. The ego believes if we can answer these unanswerable questions, we can avoid the “fundamental ambiguity of being human”, a phrase that Pema Chodron uses to so aptly describe the discomfort that is an intrinsic and unavoidable part of the human experience.

However, much to the dismay of the ego, life doesn’t come in neat packages that can be divided into black-and-white answers. One of the ego’s sole missions is to try to control outcomes, so it thinks that if it can just answer this one question, it will successfully avoid a failure, which ego interprets as a mistake. And because ego doesn’t hold the mindset that failures and mistakes are how we learn but instead believes that they’re measures of our self-worth, it has no tolerance for mistakes.

Once we can name it as an ego-question, we can create a bit of room between the mind and the need for an answer. It’s this tiny gap that forges the road to freedom. Let me explain: If the question arises and we immediately launch into the search for an answer – googling, seeking reassurance, journaling about the question itself, and all of the other ways we feed the demon of the intrusive thoughts – we find ourselves quickly slipping down the rabbit hole of anxiety. But if we can create a small gap between the thought-question and the urge to answer it, we can make a conscious choice for how we want to respond. Do we want to feed the thought or do we want to shift the needle in the compass of our mind and turn our focus in another direction?

Sometimes shifting the needle means asking a slightly, yet altogether different, question. In this case, a question that can satisfy our need to do due diligence regarding moving forward in an intimate relationship can be addressed by asking a question that comes not from the ego but from a higher and more loving part of ourselves. The higher question may be: Do we work together? or Do we do life well together? or Is my partner a loving choice for me, someone with whom I can learn about what it means to give and receive love? When a relationship anxiety sufferer asks these questions, the answer is almost always yes.

Still, even if you can answer one higher question and put the original question to rest, if we don’t attend to what’s underneath the ego will find another question to perseverate on. So we must gently excavate what lives underneath the need for certainty, brushing aside the dirt of the intrusive thought and asking, with curiosity, what wound or need the thought is pointing to. Often, then, we will arrive at the very common fear of making a mistake. As I probe the anxious mind further and ask, “Are you perservating on the question of the right partner because you’re trying to avoid making a mistake?” Yes. “And does this fear of making a mistake extend beyond your relationship?” Yes. “What is the belief?” I ask. “The belief is that if I’m perfect now I will gain approval of others. Or, on the other side, if I’m not perfect I might end up miserable and alone.”

So the need for to know if you’re with the “right” partner is about the need for certainty, which is linked to the fear of making a mistake, which is then connected to a belief about being rewarded or punished for successful or failed outcomes. This bottom-feeder belief is a product of our achievement-oriented culture that links worth to outcomes, but often arises most strongly for those who were raised in a religion that promotes the message that if you mess up, you will end up in eternal hell. While I’m a strong supporter of the sense of community and spiritual connection that religion can offer, I consider the dissemination of this message a form of spiritual abuse. I’ve encountered countless clients and people, my own husband among them, who suffered from terrible nightmares as children that they were being eaten up by the flames of hell for doing something “wrong.” This is a horrifying message to deliver to a child, and of course sets into a motion a deeply embedded fear of making a mistake and, conversely, the pressure to behave perfectly.

When we absorb a message like this early in life, it etches a deep groove into our belief system and it can be difficult to extricate. But with time and a concerted effort to replace the fear-based (or terror-based, in this case) belief with a loving and compassionate worldview, we can slowly let it go and come back to ourselves, our home base, the place inside that knows we are intrinsically good, wise, and loving and that we are living in a compassionate and forgiving universe.

Ultimately, the work is about cultivating our home base, the place where our inner wise one dwells, so that we can meet our fear, grief, and loneliness with compassion, learn to hold ourselves through the storms of the mind, and access a reliable source of truth and wisdom. This inner work is multi-layered and not for the feint of heart. It’s the work of love-warriors, those who have been able to remove the projection that the problem lies in their choice of partner and devote themselves to learning about what it means to meet their own raw and tender spots, rub a salve of compassion and curiosity over them, then orient their compass toward filling up their own well so that they can live from trust and faith instead of from the ego-directed platform of trying to get it right.

100 comments to Is My Partner Right For Me?

  • Anna

    Lovely, informative piece. I feel like with every blog post I am learning something vital and new 🙂 Thanks so much

  • Lili

    Hi Sheryl,

    This was amazing, thank you! The part you say..” is then connected to a belief about being rewarded or punished for successful or failed outcomes”….I think this is part I can relate to…I was always worried about failure (whether study, work, etc) and not being able to make the best use out of my situation..and again Im in the similar state of not being able to enjoy my time with my loving partner and ‘worrying’ about this, that I am not enjoying it…it does make sense but its also very sad…thanks for helping me understand this.

    • I’m glad it’s helpful, Lili. It takes some time to put the pieces together, and it sounds like an essential piece clicked in for you tonight.

  • Zoe

    Hiya sheryl

    Thank you for this! It is strange as I am doing your work but still around this time of year I always get an uneasy feeling as though he’s not right etc. This time I have moved my focus onto a coworker whom I start to daydream about and wonder whether he would be a better match
    I have enough skills to recognise these as just another preoccupation and not to take them seriously but sometimes it gets upsetting. I think it’s feelings and not just thoughts that get to me. I feel like I shouldn’t be feeling uneasy (not in a red flag kinda way though).

    Thank you for your wonderfully timed articles

    Zoe xx

    • We must learn to work with our feelings just as much as we must learn to work with our thoughts, by which I mean we’ve been taught to “trust your feelings” and use them as inarguable guides, and yet they can’t always be taken at face value.

  • Angela

    Hi Sheryl, The fear of making a mistake has been one of my continued thought which started from childhood. I didnt have nice aunties and I remember very clearly from the age of 3 how I was verbally abused from them. One of the aunties was living in Italy, sicily at the time. I remember when i had to sleep with her in the living room as in those days we slept on the lounge which opened into a bed. My mothers younger sister said to me; If you dont shut up I am going to lock you up in the garage”. I didnt talk much when i was 3. I was a shy, quiet and timid child. I cried to mum and dad and I told them, I want to go back home to Australia. From that day on , I saw the world as an unsafe place to live in. I have a very good memory from 3 years onwards. I didnt forget one thing, especially the horrible times. Its engraved in my mind. A child never forgets. I never lied about those times. And in those days nobody believed you. I hate my aunties that will never change.

    • I’m so, so sorry for that experience, Angela. It’s those kinds of experiences that can leave a deep imprint on the mind and heart of the anxious soul. I know how hard you’re working to reverse those beliefs, and I trust that, with time, they will be healed.

  • Naynay

    Omg completely and utterly for me. Thanks sheryl. I was thinking about this a lot this weekend. Making sure my partner is right for me. My guy is a loving choice and someone I want to love forever. It’s funny I’m excited about making him a sandwich for work tomorrow. Idk but to me that’s a step towards love for him.

  • Camille

    Thank you so much!!! Came just at the right time x

  • Introspective-follower

    Sheryl,
    Thank you for sharing this blog. I stumbled across it several months ago when I was reeling from end of a relationship that was very important to me. I was bewildered by what had transpired because it was in many ways a very good relationship. But, when it came time to discuss relocating to be together, things fell apart. In the months prior, as I fell more deeply in love with my partner, he became increasingly anxious. Your work pointed me toward an understanding of what may have been at work for him. He is definitely a highly sensitive individual and he carried emotional baggage from past relationships. I do wish that you had more I could read about being the partner of a person with the kinds of doubts you describe in the above post. I did my best, but I think the matter was out of my control. I took your course on breaking up and it was a comfort and a guide. I have come far in my grief, but I still am a work in progress.

    • I’m glad my work helped you make sense of both your partner’s relationship anxiety and the breakup, and I hope you can trust that everything you’ve learned through your process – and are still learning as you walk through your grief – will help you when you enter your next relationship.

  • Ng

    this is great sheryl… thank you so much for this. this was much needed.

  • Bra77

    I don’t know if anyone could help me with the intrusive thoughts I’m dealing with but here I go. My loving loving parter and I are about to partake in long distance as we go off to separate schools. I’m terrified of long distance and it not making it work to the point where my mind is telling me that it isn’t going to work out and that I should just leave and there is no point and it is doomed from the start. Are these intrusive thoughts or are we really doomed? Am I going to fall for someone else while we are sepersted. Am I committed enough to this relationship to make it work with my loving partner?

    • Anna

      I did long distance for the first year of my relationship (while having relationship anxiety). It really makes sense that you have these thoughts; you’re worried about the future (but it definitely does sound like intrusive thoughts to me). I also had those thoughts, because I didn’t want to get hurt – but that is something that is always possible in any relationship, ‘normal’ or long distance. And yes, long distance relationships can be really hard. No matter how much you love someone, you will have (anxious) moments in which you think: is it worth it? But that is where commitment kicks in. In my experience, falling in love is something that happens to you, but committing to stay together through good and bad is a choice.
      My thinking was: if I don’t try, I will always be wondering what it could have been like. If I go and it works out: great! If I go and it doesn’t work, it will hurt like hell but I will know that I tried love and it just didn’t work out. I’ve always let fear make a lot of decisions for me, and it felt great to overcome it in this case.

      Of course, I don’t know your story, your relationship, how often you will be able to meet etc. I don’t want to tell you what to do, but I just wanted to give you someone else’s experience as an example 🙂 Long story short, my advice is: don’t make your decision based on fear, but on courage, whatever it is you decide to do 🙂 Good luck!

      • Bra77

        Thank you so much. We will be able to see each other every week to 2 weeks. We will be sepersted by a 45minutes to a hour car ride. I think I’m just so terrified because I’ve only heard of failed long distance relationships and cheating and people falling for others while away. We’ve done long distance for a month before and it wasn’t ideal (Is long distance ever ideal?) but it made us grow closer. I think what makes it all worse is that this is the girl I want to spend the rest of my life with and I’m scared that I’ll mess it up and not want to be with her one day.

  • Nan12b

    Much needed, Sheryl! This weekend with my partner, I felt like I was checking and asking myself over and over if I liked his personality, if we had what it takes to continue a long term relationship, and overall analyzing our relationship to see if I was missing something. I even had the thought, “he’s not for me!” And it felt real. When thoughts feel real, is it because there is no space between ourselves and our thoughts? I find it hard to create a space since these thoughts bother so much. Thank you again for this!!

    • Nan12b

      I thought, ” he’s not for me!!” But I could NOT answer why

    • Intrusive thoughts always feel real; that’s why they’re so challenging to work with. If you’re hooking into them as truth, yes, it’s because you don’t have a space between the thought and the reaction where you can ask, “Am I sure this is a true thought? If I didn’t take it at face value, how else might I respond to it?”

  • Marg

    Ahh Sheryl, sometimes I feel like you’re a fly on the wall inside my head. Thank you for this dose of goodness. The topics lately have been so relevant, and could not come at a more perfect time for whatever I’ve been wrestling with that week. With this topic in particular – though I’ve been able to dispel the idea of ‘the one’ in regards to being with the ‘right’ partner – sometimes my ego still gets the best of me and takes me down the black & white wormhole… thinking that if he isn’t perfectly right for me, that means it’s going to be an utter disaster.

    The higher order questions to answer are such a help in those moments of feeling the anxiety pull me in with a panic that ‘I have to get out or I’m destined for unhappiness.’ They bring me back down into the present, at the moment when my mind wants to latch onto the what ifs that truly have no basis in today’s reality.

    However sometimes I find that I’m on that cusp when I know that I can go down the anxious path, and I choose to let it take over – whether it’s moving forward with a Google search that I’ve already read 100 times, or letting my mind jump on the thought train of an alternate future fantasy. Why do we let ourselves do this when that moment to partake presents itself? It’s like I can see it from a mile away and I still choose to fall prey.

    Have a wonderful week!

    • We fall prey because we haven’t grown the loving parent muscle yet that can say to ourselves every time, “I know you want to ________ but it’s not going to serve you in the long run.” The ego-self only sees short-term gain, and it’s easy to indulge there as a quick escape hatch fantasy, a way to get relief. It’s just like any addiction, except this is a mental addiction: we have to see the forest for the trees otherwise we’ll go for the quick-fix and then suffer for it.

      • SF

        I love this. Marg, thank you for expressing this sensation–I too am at the same stage. I allow myself to sort of fall over the precipice into “fear land” when I am able to see the hazard approaching.

        And Sheryl, thank you for bolstering this with a healthy dose of wisdom 🙂 Very encouraging.

  • Silver

    Hi to Sheryl and everyone!

    Last night during talking with my partner, while ruminating and thinking about the thoughts something came up inside me that help me dwell what are thoughts keep saying about me. I understand more that my fear of making mistake, fear of rejection of my partner causes me to flight during our fights, the reason I keep leaving during heated situations and just waiting for things to subside rather than understanding and doing things to change the outcome in the future. I also understand that I have fear of too much intimacy, fear of my space being invaded but when I think of hugging and cuddling with my partner while sleeping the feeling is so fantastic. I now understand that the more work that I do the more feelings come inside, I keep rewiring myself to change for the better.

    I also remember this quote.
    “A lot of people look for the one or the right partner but disregarding the fact that we should do our best to be the right partner first.”

    • Silver

      I’m confused now that someone told me or I read about is that mistaking physical intimacy and lust to emotional intimacy. I also noticed that I keep clinging to my partner because alot of people want her and I think I fear of losing her, being single and starting all over again. But one thing is for sure I keep learning and hoping that I would get better for her.

      • H

        Hey silver,

        I just thought I’d say you are not alone, I have seen ALOT of your posts on the forum and I can say this is totally normal what you are feeling and thinking. It is all part of the journey. I also thought I’d add that you say you think you might be scared of losing her and being single & starting over again. I had this exact same fear and anxiety around this too. Sometimes your mind will try to trick you and say that you are only with this person because you don’t want to be single and start over again. And rightly so, most people don’t want to be single and start over again…..but that’s because you know you are with a great partner and starting over again would mean great loss and heartbreak! Fear will try and twist it and the thoughts you get aren’t always black and white and not what you first think. So if this fear pops up soon it is totally normal and very common, just remember to not take it at face value.

        Have you taken a course? If not, it would benefit you so much!

  • Joshua

    bravo! Am working my way through the ‘break free’ course. It’s interesting and enlightening and definitely worth every penny.

  • just me

    I have struggled with this issue a lot. I have dreamed leaving my husband beacuse of my first love and I have taken that as a sign that I am with a wrong partner. I am taken my constant divorce dreams also as sign from my soul that I do not want to be in this relationship deep down. I am not anxious anymore, just sad. I would love to believe that those dreams are not from real me, but I am pretty sure thay my subconscious mind is telling me to leave if I want to be happy.

    • just me

      My therapist also consideres those divorce dreams as a sign from soul that I have to move on and maybe I have not married my husband because of love. I have to be brave and fcae the consequences of divorce.

    • If you didn’t take them at face value, how else could you understand them?

      • just me

        I would love to believe that I should not have to take my dreams as a face value, but I have always followed my dreams and also ended my two previous relationship because of my constant break-up dreams and those desicions were right. I have never regretted those desicions. Now my situation is different. I am married and we have a presicious little son, that is why I am still fighting. I would love to love my husband like he loves me, but he feels more like a friend to me.

        • just me

          If I forget my own deep need to get more passion and attraction to my life and concentrate on my son’s happiness and need to have family, I feel more love towards my husband also.

          • just me

            My biggest wish is to be one of those wise ladies on the forum, but I feel scated that we are doomed. Those divorce dreams are hunting me almost every night and make me feel hopeless. Am I just ignoring my truth? I do not want that to be true.

  • Nicole

    This is gorgeous and really spoke to me this morning. I am forever second-guessing myself from a position of trying to avoid “wrong” outcomes. It’s a very tricky thought pattern to unlearn, and I hope I can model a more compassionate approach to life for my daughter.

  • H

    Hi sheryl,
    I have trouble with connecting to a higher power and then asking if my partner is a loving choice or not. I often ask the question and I pretty much always get “no he’s not” in response. But there’s no tangible reason to believe he isn’t a loving choice. Hes kind sweet and suppots my highest good always. My only hook is that he can be really quiet and a bit uncomfortable socially (bUT I have social anxiety disorder so I can’t really critisize can I?) Anyway, how do I know if this is my higher power really communicating with me that we don’t fit well together or if it’s just fear masquerading as my higher power/true self? Should they be easy to differentiate – the voices of the WS and LA/higher power?

    • It can be very difficult to differentiate between higher self/truth and ego when your fear is at the fore. Remember, fear alters perception, and that’s true even when we’re trying to ask basic questions. It’s best to ask this question when you’re seeing through clear eyes, then write it down so that you can form your document of clarity.

  • C

    Hi Sheryl,

    I have found myself browsing this blog and website for hours and hours. I am not married, but I am currently in the process of buying my first home with my boyfriend. Before we had confirmation that we had the house, I had never been so excited/happy. We’ve been looking for almost 8 months, and have been together almost 6 years! It is since that phone call saying you got it that my mind flipped upside down. I had thoughts questioning whether I was ready to leave my family home, how I’ll miss my parents, do I love my boyfriend, do I find him attractive. All these crazy thoughts I had never had in the entire 5 years.

    He has been so understanding, explaining its normal for me to feel anxious its a huge step. I do not want to be without him, I want to move in with him. I fear I am ruining this wonderful moment for myself and for him. He is so excited and I feel I am draining all the fun out of it for him and I. Are these thoughts of anxiety, can I work past them?

    • Yes, these are classic anxiety thoughts/symptoms, and they’re often brought on when the commitment becomes real and permanent (as buying a house together will certainly do).

  • J

    Hi Sheryl,

    In your experience, the farther along someone goes into this process of self-work, do you find that more and more unknown issues surface? When I started this I really thought my only block was anxiety. Now that I’m more involved I’m finding that there are all these layers of “problems” for lack of a better word, that I was completely unaware of! At times it does make me feel a little bit like a crazy person lol and I often think of how easy it would be to just revert back and become blissfully unaware of all of it like most people today. I know that I need to stay the course, though. I was just wondering if this is normal.
    Thanks!

    • Do you mean problems in yourself or in the relationship? Either way, it’s a blessing to lift off the veil of denial and see what’s really there. There’s no such thing as “blissfully unaware”; that’s just code for denial, and denial has a way of sneaking up on us at some point in very unpleasant ways. Better to deal with it head-on and with consciousness.

  • C

    Thanks for your quick response Sheryl. I feel as if I have been driving myself crazy the past few months…
    Reading these forums have really helped me to realise that i am not alone, thanks for making these available.

    I feel so guilty when I am looking at my partner questioning if I find him attractive, I guess this is my anxiety taking over as I had never questioned that ever before. I decided a while ago to feel the fear and do it anyway, I know I love him.. I just wish my mind would let me enjoy it.

  • C

    Thanks Sheryl. I will definitely consider this. With the house purchase money is a bit tight, however I understand that my health and happiness is very important. Thanks again for taking time to reply.

  • Klewis23

    This was so spot on for me! I’ve asked in the comments section multiple times on your opinion of interfaith relationships and I think this article was the true answer of my need to know. I’ve excavated my fears of moving forward with my partner and eventually marrying him – and I have uncovered the fears of making a mistake which then exposed that I’m afraid deep down that marrying him will result in a marriage that’s not blessed by God. Our differences of beliefs is not something that I personally have a problem with- I’m still able to open up about my faith and he supports me by attending church with me, so I know this fear is from my upbringing of the world being black/white – either in or out of God’s grace. As I’ve been reading through your work it’s helped me to really question by childhood beliefs – do I really believe that a loving God would operate this way? Do I really believe that he/she wouldn’t want me to find happiness in another human who supports, loves and respects me. And the answer is no! That isn’t how I, as an adult, believe God operates! Thank you for always speaking truth, Sheryl!

  • We're in this together

    Always so wonderful to know that there are people like you Sheryl, who are sharing your wisdom to the wider public. Thank you so very much.

    As a goal to myself, and perhaps helpful to others, I wanted to share my vulnerabilities with a group of people who may relate. Why is that? I strongly feel that by using this forum constructively, or joining the courses, it is really a tool of empowerment.

    So for now, I hereby share some of my vulnerabilities with you all:

    1. How long have I been visiting this site? Well, 1yr and half off and on. Much, much less now as I have engaged in meditation, counselling and effective journalism.

    2. What sense of guilt do I feel about Relationship Anxiety (RA)? This one, is difficult for me. I have not shared with my [loving…as we all know =)] boyfriend that this is something I suspect I am going through

    3.What does RA feel like to me? It feels as though there is this off and on connection…one moment I feel certain “heck yes, he is the one” then the next moment he says something that goes against how I feel he should respond and my ever-so-chitty-chatty-brain goes “ohh girl, are you so sure? This doesn’t ‘seem’ right”

    4. Do I think I can surpass this RA? Um. Heck yes. We all can. I have already come so so far. From panic induced brain to ‘talking’ to my intrusive thoughts (thanks Sheryl for defining this in one of your previous posts) I feel much stronger and capable

    Ah and the list goes on fellow forum commenters. If you’ve read this far, I say THANK YOU for listening, because I am sure we all know how difficult it is to admit our vulnerabilities.

    Cheers to all!

    • S

      We’re in this together!

      Thank you for posting what you said in #3! This is me! I have been going through this since I started dating my boyfriend. Well I think I had a really long period where I fell in love with him because I remember just sitting and smiling and saying to myself I love him so much. I had on and off moments…but am definitely is a big off moment and I know its because I am not dealing with my fears and myself.

      I too haven’t shared much with my boyfriend about my relationship anxiety. He does know I suffer from anxiety as I have most of my life since I was in my teens. When we talk about it, he doesn’t fully understand because he to me is a typical man. Strong, wants to fix things, not super emotional. I have to explain things to him differently and that is okay.

      My mind feels like my worst enemy. I constantly think about my relationship. If I should break up with him. I tell myself over and over again he doesn’t care. (which isn’t true) I tell myself I annoy him. (isn’t true) I’ve asked him if I annoy him. Not true. I am not sure why I focus on how I think he feels about me (rejection probably)….but I do know that I am just expecting the worst because I am trying to protect myself because my mind is sure he will bail. I want to be all in…but my mind won’t let me. I am a hot mess and just glad to have read that you have an off and on connection as well. I feel like all my true feelings for him are buried deep down by this wall of not good feelings of fear etc.

  • Lea

    Hi Sheryl and everyone,
    This post reflects everything I’ve been asking myself all this time. However, it’s difficult for me not to take these questions at face value. I’m getting married in a month and I’M SCARED OUT OF MY MIND… 🙁 All I do is create scenarios in my mind of how to get my self out of all this. I don’t enjoy it at all…I’m shaking, I’m sick, I can’t eat…it’s terrible. Why is it so difficult if it’s love and if it’s for my own good?

  • Beth

    How long do you think one can go about feelings this way? I have dealt with it for over a year now and still can’t seem to decide whether it’s real or just anxiety, because there’s no deep down feeling that he is right for me, and I don’t know if I can see myself with him for the rest of my life. Sometimes I feel like I’m done and I know I need to break it off and that I’m just drawing it along because I don’t want to be alone and don’t want to hurt him and because I love his family. It’s a different feeling all the time. Sometimes I get so sad because it’s like I’m trying to let this really good man go. Sometimes I feel smothered by him and I feel that he’s too immature for me. Sometimes I think so hard about it that I get a stress headache. I just don’t know how to determine which feeling is the most accurate.

    • “Sometimes I think so hard about it that I get a stress headache.”

      The answers, if there are any, aren’t in your head, Beth. Are you engaged in daily practices like effective journaling or mindfulness? Is your life filled with joy and aliveness? Do you trust yourself? If you can’t answer yes to these questions, you’re not doing the work, and you will spin around in your head forever trying to find your clarity.

      • Beth

        Mostly I just try to rationalize it all, and I know that’s the worst thing to do. I wouldn’t say my life is full of joy and aliveness, and no, I don’t trust myself. :/ What do you mean by, “the answers, if there are any”? I have attempted journaling. It doesn’t seem to help me very much? Maybe I’m not doing it correctly?

      • H

        Hi Sheryl,

        Forgive me if I sound rude but I always feel like there is massive pressure on here for our lives to be filled with joy and aliveness. I feel like this puts us under pressure for our lives to be a certain way and if it isn’t like that then we feel like our life isn’t great, then we tend to feel depressed and unworthy. I don’t understand why our life HAS to be filled with joy and aliveness to understand our choices. sonetimes some peoples lives are kind of slow and content but some people are happy wth this so I dont understand why it should be filled with joy and aliveness because most people’s lives aren’t.

        • It’s not that your life needs to be filled with joy and aliveness; it’s that when your focus is entirely on “do I feel in love?” and “is my partner right for me?” one of the first questions to ask that can explode the projection is to turn those questions onto yourself: “Am I in love with my own self and my own life?” And to be clear: joy doesn’t mean happiness every moment of every day. It means that you feel basically content and that you take responsibility for your own aliveness instead of expecting your partner to create that for you.

          • Lili

            Hi Sheryl,

            Following up on your comment, what if we do feel that aliveness and joy in our personal life but still don’t feel happy with the relationship. For me, I have a general stable life and I enjoy my work, friends, etc My past life has also been quite stable and I have had loving parents, despite the fact that my husband is a very nice person I don’t have that “in love”/ “enjoy” feeling when we are together which is really difficult for me to deal with, whenever we are traveling or having a nice day together, anxiety kicks in and the thoughts come back stronger than before, through journaling and doing the course I have understood somethings about myself, my sensitive anxious personality, perfectionism and fear of failure…which is eyeopening but I still don’t understand why the feeling of unattractiveness comes in so boldly…any advice tips, are highlight appreciated. I have also started reading the book “hold me tight” EFT therapy as recommended by a friend and I also saw it in the comments before….thanks alot as always

  • A

    Hi Sheryl
    I have a question about romance and sex lessening the longer you are with someone as this has occurred in my long term relationship. As a result, the question of “are we just friends now instead of lovers?” has me choking with fear. This thought sends me into a panic and I feel absolutely terrified. We still cuddle, kiss, hug, and hold hands which I feel very happy about and we can still have deeply emotional conversations with one another so I know we can’t be “just friends.” I guess it’s because we are so comfortable with one another and the honey moon stage ended a long time ago. This only perpetuates other thoughts about “what if this means I need to change partners?” “What if I never feel more attraction towards my parrner?” “I need to stop lying to myself and to him…I’m just being a horrible person.” And I obsess over other people I find attractive and I fantasize about how they would be as a partner or what they’d be like sexually…which I find both exciting in the moment but horrible and unwanted all at the same time. I find myself spiraling out of control and it’s so hard not to take things at face value. I love my partner tremendously and I don’t want to leave. Perhaps all of these intrusive thoughts are a mental Block between my partner and I? I know I still have inner work to do and I catch myself projecting onto my partner. This is all so painful…I feel so guilty and undeserving of my partner’s love : (

    • This was the exact topic of the Open Your Heart phone call last night! When we’re able to maintain connection and safety both within ourselves and with our partner, and work through our own blocks and walls, sexuality will improve with time. It’s not the model we see, but it’s what has been proven through research. The mainstream model says, “Jump ship! Find someone new and exciting! You deserve great sex!” but this search for aliveness is short-lived and ultimately we must learn to create our own aliveness and bring this to our long-term partnerships.

  • A

    It feels SO wonderful and comforting to know that I’m not alone or the “exception.” I have been wanting to take one of your courses, but I’m unable to afford it at this time. For now I have a great therapist who is so helpful and understanding. She also emphasizes that regardless of who I’m with, my issues are sure to follow me. And I completely agree. As I’ve grown to love and appreciate your work on this site, I’ve realized that society’s message of what true love is…is all a fantasy. How can people sustain loving and long lasting relationships if they expect to always feel “in love” and romantic most of the time? Or long to feel excited and alive constantly? What is left once all of that fades away is the true foundation of a loving partnership. Although my partner and I have problems arguing a lot (which I’m trying to work on taking responsibility for my part), he really is my best friend. Is that so wrong? Isn’t that ultimately what the goal is? To be loving best friends with one’s partner? Isn’t that what keeps love alive over the course of years and years? This is all a process…and I know this won’t happen in a matter of days. I must work through my anxiety and perhaps depression (I suspect that is something I’m also struggling with) and only I can be responsible for myself in loving ways. Only I can tend to those areas…not my partner. I can’t blame it all on him or our relationship. And in being there for myself, I can be present and available in my relationship. Thank you Sheryl for your guidance, wisdom, and constant understanding. This community is a true lifeline.

  • CBritt

    Hi Sheryl,

    I’m hoping this doesn’t turn in to me writing a book-long post…

    I want to thank you SO much for all of your work. It has honestly made a HUGE difference in my life and has been a dream come true. I stumbled upon your work a year ago for a specific course (I can’t remember which one) but saw there was a deadline, so I think I told myself to come back. I re-stumbled upon your site this past December and it’s honestly changed my life. I signed up for the Break Free course and am currently working through Lesson 12 for my first run through.

    Over the past almost 2 years, my life has been really tough. I was sexually abused by my stepfather (my parents divorced when I was young) when I was around 17 years old and it took 7 years for me to say anything. I was also taken advantage of by my stepbrother. I have told my boyfriend, my mom, best friend and a few friends. Everyone has been very supportive of me for the most part except for my om slightly. She decided to stay with my stepfather. I currently still live in the same house with both of them because my job situation has gone up and down like crazy with contracts (since last April I’ve been working only part time mostly 2 or 3 days per week). I am looking for another job so that I can have stability and move out. My boyfriend is financially stable and is wanting to move in with me this year. Working through your course has been bringing me closer to a place where I am more comfortable with it rather than fear.

    I started to get relationship anxiety either right before or right after I went on a trip with my ‘family’ – including my stepfather and stepbrother. Relationship anxiety/doubts have been the worst thing I have ever experienced because I am with the most perfect guy. He’s honestly everything I’ve ever dreamed of. Retrospectively, I can understand why I’ve been suffering from it. I can see the anxiety and projections and the ego trying to protect me from getting hurt and feeling betrayed again. Lately, my anxious and intrusive thoughts that have been plaguing me are “what if he cheats on me” and “what if he leaves?”. I know this is the fear of uncertainty. I’ll also have feelings of numbness which I know stems from depression. I have lost my passion for so many things including starting my own business (which I was so passionate about for so many years).

    I was working through the abuse with a counselor but stopped trusting her when after I came back from the trip and saying that somethign felt different with my boyfriend and her response was “sometimes our feelings just change and they’re not what we need anymore” or something along those lines. I never wanted to talk to her about my relationship because I knew she’d tell me to leave or that it was God telling me to leave. Instead, I have been working through my history with tapping (EFT) because I have found that it’s my belief system that is needing to change – needing to think more positively and that good things CAN happen to me. I definitely know I struggle with the uncertainty portion and change and find it SO hard to be okay with uncertainty. I really want to work on myself to feel “alive”, feel excited again and definitely to feel confident. Everytime I think about a situation where I had HUGE anxiety/doubts, ex. at my friend’s wedding, bike riding in the forest with my boyfriend (before your course) I get such an ‘ick’ feeling inside that I can’t shake. Everything feels off. What is this feeling? How can I dissociate with the feeling when I know now that it was relationship anxiety I was experiencing at those events?

    Being a Chrsitian, my anxiety has also hung it’s hat on things like “what is God my relationship is something God doesn’t want for you?”. I will continue to work though all my intrusive thoughts and know that the healing will really start to come once I move out of my house.

    Thank you, Sheryl for all you do and for being an answer to prayer.

    • I encourage you to find a new counselor. There are many out there that don’t understand relationship anxiety, but there are also many wonderful, gifted therapists who can help guide you on your path. You’re doing great work, but it’s so much easier to do it with a loving and skilled guide.

  • Alley

    Wow, this blog feels like it has lifted a weight in my mind. I have been suffering in silence since 2nd February. I think I have an underlying health issue which is being checked out by doctors at the moment. I have never suffered from anxiety / depression or anything and I have been with my boyfriend for nearly 7 years and not once have I ever had a glimmer of doubt about our relationship. Then on the evening of 2nd February I was overwhelmed with intrusive thoughts about whether I was truly in love with my partner, whether he was the one etc. I spend a lot of time in the car on my own and this is when my thoughts are worst. The strange thing is, is that I know the answers to the questions. I know that deep down I love him with all my heart. I want to marry him, have children with him and grow old with him. The problem I am faced with is that no matter how many times I tell myself this; the thoughts keep returning and it is getting me down, to the point where I am starting to question my feelings and let my head take over (which is wrong as I don’t want to leave him!) I feel emotionally numb and just want things to go back to how they were before I was drenched in these intrusive thoughts. I finally opened up to my partner about how I was feeling and it has helped me. I guess this blog just gives me reassurance that these feelings don’t mean that I don’t love him, and don’t mean that I should leave him. The very fact that the situation is upsetting me so much clarifies in my mind that he is the one I want to spend the rest of my life with. Does it get easier? Will the thoughts ever subside???? Thanks in advance.

  • taa

    I want to thank sheryl I have done the relationship ecourse and my anxiety has pretty much completly gone it wasn’t easy but by removing the shame and understanding what cause relationship anxiety it really put things into perspective and i started waking up without any intrusive thoughts or bad feelings for hours at a time until weeks has gone by without painful intrusive thoughts i feel like myself again and i can feel the loving feelings without the feeling of wanting to run away the projecctions are all but gone. For anyone who suffers from intrusive thoughts dont beat yourself up its normal for highly sensitive people like ourselfs to overthink and get anxious I have had relationship anxiety since i was 14 I guess im lucky in that my partner understands exactly what i was going through and its all fear. If you have the money to purchase the e course it is worth it as it gives you tools for the anxiety.

  • Angela

    Taa, its so nice and refreshing hear positive feedback, gives us highly sensitive beautiful people definite hope. Its the best feeling, i cant say I am surprised because like yourself i did the courses and Everything just made sense and my thoughts my moods became easier to manage day by day. Congratulations. I am happy for you. x

  • PLet

    Thank you so much for your post and site! Lately, I’ve been experiencing relationship anxiety. My boyfriend of 1+ years is a great man who I feel comfortable being myself around. Of course, anxiety has reared its ugly head. I started doubting if he loved me, wanted to break up with me, if my anxiety was too much of a burden for him, if things had changed between us, if he was bored, etc. I talked to him about it and he confirmed that my fears are irrational. He still loves me, cuddles me when I hand panic attacks, holds my hand as I sleep, and tries to make sure I’m okay. My anxiety starting asking me: are you sure you love him? is he the one? do I want to be with him? Am I ruining my relationship? Etc. It was refreshing to read your posts to know I’m not alone nor am I going crazy. Love is scary and I fear getting hurt, that’s where a lot of my anxiety comes from. This doesn’t diminish how I feel about him or our relationship. It’s still scary and I still have to find a way to deal with the anxiety. I don’t want to push him away or worry him or lose him.

    • The fear of getting hurt is at the heart of relationship anxiety for many people. It’s great that you’re already identifying one of your core fears that lives inside the anxiety.

      • PLet

        It’s definitely easier said than done. I’m scared that by sharing my anxiety with him that I have made him doubt our relationship. It’s hard not listening to the voice of fear that is trying to “protect” me. I still have to find a way to cope with this fear and not give it had much importance. I wish I could push those fears away. When they pop up, I try to question them and their rationality. It’s not easy but I guess it’s a step. The hardest moments are the quiet ones when my brain can’t stop and I overanalyze everything like thinking his disturbed sleep is because of problems with me when he’s already told me that if he had a problem that he would tell me. I don’t know how to silence this irrational voice of fear. I don’t want it to have this hold over me anymore.

  • just me

    I am so scared that I have married my husband according to my head insteod of my gut and that is why those divorce dreams and ex-dreams are hunting me. My therapist also considers that that might be true..

    • taa

      Alot of therapists dont understand have you done the ecourse ?

      • just me

        I have done it once, but I should do it once again, but I have not had time. Those divorce dreams are so powerful and sending me a clear message that get out and find more romantic love, if you want to be happy.

  • Newly Married

    Hi Sheryl you helped me a lot through hard times when I was getting married and before and I want to say thank you, I know latterly I been in projection and anger with my partner and its easier to deal with anger than with vulnerability and its probably so much pain I have held for years, my intrusive thoughts and ocd began with jealousy about his previous relationship and things but I know I am on projection as a way to protect myself thanks to you I am able to recognize that and try to work with it although its been hard because of my anger, but also thank god I have a wonderful husband who understands and puts up with my anger lol and sits next to me able to grab my hand and kiss me regardless of my tantrums. I been doing affirmations and journaling and it works I just have to consistent and I am doing that my pushing my loving father in me into doing it even though there is resistance and laziness, but right now with my heart open I feel so much love for my husband that Its almost like my heart kind of hurts or there is these strong feeling in my chest for him and I know its love, I know he is the best thing that has happened to me and I know that he is the one man who I want to be with my life and learn about love. I know you dont like to name “the one” and I guess I dont either, but I feel like saying right now that he is a blessing into my life and I someone that I could work with so well of course there is lessons I have to work on which is learn more loving, compassion and forgiveness that I have never had to work on in my life before, but he is worth…
    Thank you for helping us Sheryl. Many Blessings

    • A beautiful comment; thank you. Your husband sounds like a true gem, and I love hearing the you’re developing your loving inner father to help keep you on track with your inner work. Sending you many blessings.

  • just me

    I am considering to.contact you Sheryl, because I love your work and wisdom you share, eventhough I hesitate if this work is for me or whether I am in that 5 %. My two last therepist are encouriging me to take divorce, because I sometimes feel like I have been jusy forcing this whole thing and that is why those ex and divorce dreams are hunting me all the time. It is jusy so hard for me to break our family..

    • Peaceful

      Hi Just Me,

      What harm does it do to do the work Sheryl suggests and try it out? You seem to keep looking at what others are telling you to do (your therapists, Sheryl) instead of turning inward and seeking your own wisdom. Have you tried meditation or the Journaling practice Sheryl recommends? It really all comes back to the question of, why not do the work? Even if you are in the 5% (which honestly I do not think you are since you have already said this is a pattern in your life) then you would have clarity and could move forward confidently. If you aren’t in the 5% and this work DOES apply to you and help you, well then you are helped and can move forward with clarity and confidence in your marriage.

      • My thoughts exactly, Peaceful ;). And let me be clear that it’s not just going through the course material but it’s DOING THE WORK, which means committing to one of more of the practices that I teach and doing them as much as possible. Insight is helpful but real change occurs through dedicated action.

        • just me

          I feel more that my gut is telling me to leave, but I am just too scared to break our son’s home and face the consequences. I know that I have to do much more work with myself and I really need to focus on that part. Nobody can rescue me from guilty and pain, which this realisation causes me. You are right with that.

          • just me

            I seem to be so alone with these constant divorce dreams that I cannot help thinking that they are keeping my truth which I am just scared to face. I am sorry that I am not able to be more positive.

          • Peaceful

            Since when is anyone’s gut 100% right? I often hesitate about relying completely on gut feelings because it is shaped by our own beliefs experiences wounds etc. is ti possible you are mis reading it? That your “gut”is actually your fear? The more the dreams are on your mind the more likely you are to keep having them. Have you ever noticed how you dream about random things from a day- it’s because you thought about it, stop focusing on the fact you are having the dreams and start asking what else those dreams could mean? What kind of symbolism might exist in a dream about divorce?

          • Divorce dreams are rarely about divorce, and please remember, as Peaceful has pointed out, that it can be dangerous to take dreams at face value. The question to ask when you have a divorce dream, when taken as metaphor, is, “What part of MYSELF do I need to divorce in order to come more fully into wholeness? What part of myself is holding me back from experiencing love more fully?”

          • just me

            I admit that I have wanted someone to rescue me and tell me which path to choose. My subconscious is sending me so clear messages almost every nighy which I am not able to ignore anymore. I have really tried to be positive and learn gratitude towards my husband, but something is off inside, maybe has always been, and I do not know whether it can be fixed or not..

  • CT

    Hi Sheryl !

    After googling a lot I came across your work here about 2 months ago when i found myself having panic attacks, being really anxious, scared and so on.

    I have been with my partner almost 4 y now. We got engaged about 4 months ago, and that is something what i have always wanted and I’ve been waiting for this days for a long time. And you know i have always imagined how i would feel if he would finally propose that i would be so happy and i would just cry for happiness. But i still think back my real reaction. I remember i could not even cry i was standing there couple of minutes like what is going on.
    And i find myself to try to think back what was going on in my head, because i feels that to word YES took me maybe to long to say it out. and also i have a fear that the word like NO was running through my head as well.
    Of course i said yes , and we hugged and i think we both cried. I was really happy and i just could not wait to tell my family and friends.
    But i still feel scared that maybe my reaction supposed to be something else and it breaks my heart.
    I really love my partner and he is the best thing what has happened to me.
    We actually met while we were both traveling. We are from the same country but me met on the other side of the world and we have been traveling together since. And i do think it is amazing to find someone to share a life with and also travel together like we have done it for years now. We have lived in different countries and we always have to start over, jobs,place to live, get stable with money, and even if its been really hard to start again we have always managed to do it , even if its hard for the beginning but i find as together we are really good team and always there for each other and we always come out stronger then ever !

    For me what has been also massive anxiety trigger is the sex life.
    I think like first 2 y of our relationship our sex life was awesome and and more playful and more constant.
    I remember my concerns starts when i just started feeling that i wasn’t on the mood as much as he was. And i felt bad about it,that there is something wrong, that i should also want to have sex then he wants. And then there was a period of time where we didn’t have sex like 2 months and i got really worried and i couldn’t even put the finger on it why i didn’t want have sex, i even start googling what is passion, what is love,or does it means that i don’t love him anymore..but this time i didn’t get so anxious about it.
    But now it really worries me that its a sign or like red flag in our relationship and i really don’t know what to do
    There are so many times i feel like i even if i feel that i would be intimate with him i kinda waiting him to do the first step.
    Do you think that the fact i have always struggled with my body and my weight,and i have never feel good enough with my self and with my body is a reason why i dont want to have sex so often ?

    Thank you so much to even take time to read my long and messy comment,

    • CT

      Im very sorry Sheryl if you find anyway that i have been disrespectful to you,to your work or someone else here i blog.
      The reason why i was trying to find a contact with another person was purely because i feel i’m stuck and i don’t know where to get started.
      I had now bad intentions and im really sorry.

  • Engaged and scared

    I feel so crap lately. I said no to most of the questions in the blog post but maybe because I’m currently feeling anxious. I feel unhappy in my relationship and it’s tearing me apart. I feel I’m just unhappy and I’m just hope no it’s anxiety and telling myself it is. I hope I’m wrong though and it IS anxiety. I feel I might be feeling this way as we are about to move in together and I got these feelings not long after we got engaged. I’m scared I’ll never realize if I’m happy or not, or if it’s my anxiety 🙁 I’m a very anxious person and have been all my life. Suffering from intrusive thoughts and over thinking. I’m just so confused!

  • Engaged and scared

    And I’m just hoping its anxiety* sorry my phone corrected it x

  • Northernlass

    I just wanted to give some hope to someone, that things can and WILL get better. I suffered terribly from relationship anxiety for about two years, but decided to take drastic action and do all the things Sheryl suggests in her blog. I still get intrusive thoughts, but they don’t seem to cling so much anymore. When the fear talks now, I can literally tell it’s the fear. Sometimes it almost seems like it has an audible voice (that makes me sound crazy 😉 ), but it always comes with the same kind of feeling. I think my fear shouts loudly now because it knows that I’m recognising it and calling it out from under all its myriad of disguises, and it’s scared of not being heard. Now I can choose to live with the fear of loss, the fear of the unknown, and live in the moment and in love instead.

  • Lili (I couldn’t comment below your comment so I hope you find this!): Feeling “in love” and “enjoying” your partner are two very different experiences. Are you saying that even when your well is full and you’re experiencing true aliveness and passion for your own life, when you’re seeing through clear eyes, you don’t enjoy spending time with your partner?

    • Beth

      This spiked me a bit.. I’m not sure if I would know how to answer this if I were asked this question. I feel like even when my life isn’t as stressful and I don’t feel as down on myself, I still sometimes don’t feel “in love” with my partner. I don’t dislike spending time with him, but it’s not something I constantly long for, if that makes sense. Most people I know can’t go a day without their significant others without feeling empty. I’ve been dating my boyfriend for almost 3 years now and have felt that way maybe twice since all of this started around a year ago. I feel like I should be more passionate about being with him, that there should be a spark and that “There’s never any other place I’d rather be than here with you” feeling, and if I get bored, I just start thinking, “Wow, this will never work.” Maybe I’ve just never been fully “alive” and “passionate” about my own life, but it scares me to think maybe if I achieved that, that I might not choose to be with him.

      • Lili

        Hi Sheryl,

        Thank you for your comment, I almost missed it! but glad I saw it 🙂 I think I know what you mean by “in love” and “enjoy” but for me part of being in love with your partner (not all is being able to enjoy the company, and I do resonate with Beth’s comment ” don’t dislike spending time with him, but it’s not something I constantly long for” [Beth: I am sorry I spiked your anxiety but hopefully through these interactions we can better understand our underlying thoughts]. I like Beth , also enjoy the company of my partner (sometimes, but its not something I feel is different or unique than other friendships i have (like close friends, family), something special …(though I should mention that we have had special moments occasionally) but still overall don’t have the special feeling. That makes me sad and this is the thing that bothers me perhaps the most… Dear Sheryl, if you have any insights we would truly appreciate it x

        Narges

  • Confused and Anxious

    Thank you for this post Sheryl. I have been reading your blog for about a year now and it has helped me immensely.

    My relationship anxiety started about a year and a half ago. It was very sudden and incredibly frightening. I was so in love and sure about my partner one minute and the next I was questioning whether I loved him or if he was right for me.

    I know where this originates from as about two years ago we broke up for around 4 months as he experienced the same relationship anxiety and thoughts and feelings that he could not articulate properly. The only way he could explain it was that he had constant thoughts that he shouldn’t be with me, even though I was his dream woman, in his own words. I had no choice but to let him go, even though it was incredibly painful for me. Thinking back to this time still makes me very upset. We got back together and have been doing well ever since, I can even say our relationship is better now than it was. He’s so attentive and so caring, when we have an argument or a disagreement he always reminds me that relationships can be hard and that we can always learn something from any argument.

    And yet, since my relationship anxiety started I have had thoughts about leaving, that I don’t love him, that someone else would be better for me. It’s so upsetting as all I have always wanted was to be with him. I know that deep down this is all down to fear of losing him, as our break up scarred me very badly emotionally. There is also a bit of left over anger (I suppose?) along the lines of “how could he ever contemplate leaving me?” I’m guessing that’s the ego being hurt as well.

    Over the past year and a half the anxiety has taken many shapes, from questioning whether I loved him, to nitpicking everything he does, constantly comparing him to others and always finding faults, questioning what if i’m gay, etc. I think I’ve probably analysed my relationship from every possible angle and this is so exhausting when all I want to do is enjoy my partner and spending time with him and enjoy the love that he is giving me every day, without guilt or anxiety.

    The latest turn on this journey has been my anxiety focusing on a thought of “what if I’m better off with someone else?” and has particularly focused on a guy I work with. He’s not at all my usual type and has quite obvious personality flaws that I find very unattractive. Yet my brain has fixated on this thought of “what if I should be with this guy?” I also feel that I am massively projecting positive thoughts and feelings onto him, that have no basis in reality. My anxiety went through the roof earlier today when another colleague mentioned him liking another girl we work with (even though he has a long term girlfriend). When he said this I felt what I thought was jealousy for a few seconds, followed by a lot of anxiety and guilt. Now, if I know I do not like this guy (I have asked myself honestly many times who would I prefer and my partner wins every time, even with all this anxiety) why did I feel this way? It’s almost like I’m feeling protective of this projected “perfect man” image I have created and it is so ridiculously confusing and I feel totally stuck as to how to deal with this.

    Has anyone dealt with something similar before? I would appreciate any advice as I desperately want to work through this hurdle that’s come up but have no idea how to.

  • Kalika

    This forum has been a lifeline for me and my husband since before we were married, and I’ve learned SO much from the teachings and comments of everyone, although I’ve almost never commented.

    Today, however, I want to give back. This is from the brand-new book from Pope Francis: _Amoris Laetitia_ (“The Joy of Love”)and as I read this section, I exclaimed to my husband, “This is so ‘Sheryl Paul’!” He responded, “Yes, because Pope Francis and Sheryl are both drawing from the same source: the truth of real relationships.” (My very wise husband nails it once more. 😉

    “We have to realize that all of us
    are a complex mixture of light and shadows. The
    other person is much more than the sum of the
    little things that annoy me. Love does not have
    to be perfect for us to value it. The other person
    loves me as best they can, with all their limits, but
    the fact that love is imperfect does not mean that
    it is untrue or unreal. It is real, albeit limited and
    earthly. If I expect too much, the other person
    will let me know, for he or she can neither play
    God nor serve all my needs. Love coexists with
    imperfection. It ‘bears all things’ and can hold
    its peace before the limitations of the loved one.”
    –Pope Francis, _Amoris Laetitia_ (2016), Chapter 4, Section 113, pg. 86.

  • CT

    Hi Sheryl !!

    I have been suffering from relationship anxiety for 3 months now. It started off really badly,panic attacks and so on. Its not so bad anymore. But to be honest i still have negative thoughts all the time , some days are better and then the bad days are just bringing me down so much and sometimes it just feels like im losing my mind. I also have constant fear and worry and that also just freaks me out.
    The big problem is that i have bad dreams quit often. And its all about that me and my partner are breaking up or that im giving back my engagement ring and its just makes me feel so anxious.
    Deep deep inside i know that i dont want break up with him or leave me and love him so much !
    But straight aways if i have bad dreams like that it freaks me out i start worry that that means we actually have to break up . I really dont know what to do or do i have to believe that my dreams are telling me something.
    Im already saving up some money to start the Break Free From Relationship Anxiety E-Course and cant wait to get started.
    Maybe you have any kind thought is really just Relationship Anxiety or does it mean i really have to leave my partner ?