Relationship Death By Disappointment

Every one knows that lying and cheating are expected during poker games, but ill advised in romantic relationships -- in the ones that you want to go well, at least. However, did you know that there's an even more surefire way to kill a relationship? Relationship death by disappointment has been the downfall of many perfectly rosy couplings. What might be a surprise is that the party doing the disappointing is usually not the one at fault: The disappointed one is often the problem.

When you do something to disappoint your girlfriend, you aren't necessarily doing anything wrong; you just haven't lived up to her own arbitrarily set expectations. Her sense of your capabilities (and the core of your character and why she loves you) is put into question. Relationship death by disappointment is common because it is impossible for you to know what she hears or thinks, and to know what she is expecting -- until it's too late. Read on for a few of the most likely disappointments you'll need to counteract, and how to escape relationship implosion.

Disappointment: You consistently forget

Women have memories like steel traps, illustrated most clearly by their ability to dredge up every argument in detail, and they expect you to have the same retention for all the details of her life, her family, her job, her friends, her hairdresser, etc. If you don't, she assumes you are self-centered.

Ditch the disappointment: Dramatic effort is required to either build positive equity or repair a nasty incident and let her know that you may be forgetful, but that this doesn't mean you don't care. Buy her a copy of her favorite childhood book or plan a dinner at her favorite restaurant as a gesture to show that you can in fact remember something.

Disappointment: You lack values

Women need to trust the men in their lives and a lack of morals and values, in her opinion, means that she can't rely on you. Every woman has high hopes for the man she hopes to build a future with, and she wants the father of her children to be able to teach his collective values to the next generation and impress her family in the process.  

Ditch the disappointment: Keep her in the loop on your decision-making to help her understand why you made the choice you did and your rationale behind it all. That way she can't assume that your judgment is a character flaw.

Disappointment: You treat people badly

Women think in black and white: people are either nice or they're not. If you treat waitstaff, bartenders, customer service personnel, and such rudely or with little patience, she assumes that this behavior will eventually be turned on her.

Ditch the disappointment: In this case, she's right. Treating people badly reflects poorly on you and there is usually no valid excuse. Apologize and make every attempt to change your actions in the future.

Disappointment: You lack ambition

Women spend too much time thinking about the future, and you've probably entered her thoughts. Chances are you aren't exactly the same 20 years from now in her plans. If you paint a picture of what you hope to be in the future, then do nothing to make it happen, you look like you aren't capable of making positive changes in your life or don't care enough to improve.

Ditch the disappointment: Be honest about what you aspire to be, and don't just assume she wants a high-earning alpha male with a fancy job title and lie to impress her with your corner-office goals. She just wants to know that you plan to grow and evolve over time, and that you can deal with change. Discuss your collective goals and focus on what you hope to achieve together; this keeps her involved in the process.

Disappointment: You're not romantic

You managed to woo her when you first started dating, so she has a right to expect some sort of romance to continue. She might be caught off guard if the gestures decrease dramatically or stop altogether, and she may assume that you were just putting on an act to win her over or even that you aren't interested anymore.

Ditch the disappointment: Think of maximum impact over an extended period of time to get things back on track. Try regular flower deliveries, dinner dates or even middle-of-the-day phone calls to remind her that you are invested in making her happy and thinking of her.


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