Some things are just better – Illy Café
Some things just don’t make sense – Me
One of those things is sunk cost fallacy, and how often we make room for it in relationships.
Sunk cost fallacy happens when people continue a behavior, because of the resources they have invested in that endeavor. The behavior itself is irrational, but it aligns with earlier actions/decisions and so it goes…
Having watched Naomi Watts in Mulholland Drive, I’d always thought Lady D was a role she just had to play. My parents loved her majesty, and when the movie about her came out, we couldn’t book tickets soon enough. I don’t remember much about it besides that it was so disappointing that my dad left mid movie. Me and my mum weren’t liking the movie either, Lady Diana’s portrayal was terrible, our seats weren’t that good, but we were there, might as well power through right?
In theory, we agreed with dad’s decision to leave. However, most times, we don’t leave.
You think to yourself:
I already got ready.. I already made time to see this.. I already drove to get here.. I already paid for the tickets.. I already paid for the overpriced nachos.. I already felt uncomfortable saying “sorry” 15 times as I got to my seat.
Boom, sunk cost fallacy, and you stay. No one’s died because they powered through cringey movies, bad stand ups, “funny” videos our friends showed us. It’ fine.
Until it’s not *gasp*
The older you get, the easier it becomes to fully articulate your thoughts and beliefs.
I believe breaking up should be more encouraged for people in long-term relationships than for new couples.
Of course, you might decide to end things early because of red flags, unhealthy boundaries or because you’re just painfully incompatible.
However, I’ve found in the early stages of meeting or being with someone, we’re quick to end things over misunderstandings, partly fueled by the sense of security social media and dating apps provide that someone else, someone wayyy better is readily available.
Misunderstandings are just that (read the first word of this sentence 😌), whereas with your partner who you’ve been with for years? Always getting in fights and seemingly being in completely different wavelengths aren’t misunderstandings.
If you didn’t know, I’m not a ride-or-die. Break ups? Love them!
This cynical, love-hating mess who will die alone without having ever known true love… Who does she think she is? Love is about sacrificeee!!! My grandma did everything for my grandpa who treated her like shit, and look at them. Yes, they never respected, appreciated or loved one another, but they’ve been together 120 years!
Good for them. If you’re Albanian, you know things were way different for our grandparents, parents even, than they are for us right now.
If you haven’t unfucked yourself and that’s what you want, so be it. If your idea of a good relationship goes beyond the Mr. not being physically violent, read on.
So many times, people stay in relationships because of sunk cost fallacy. Because they’ve already invested so much, they can’t just up and go like my dad did in the movies.
Humans are creatures of habit, we usually resist change. Mark Manson’s Law of Avoidance states:
The more something threatens your identity, the more you will avoid doing it.
In long-term relationships, you spend a lot of your time with them; you borrow their mannerisms, thought patterns and clothes; you rest assured in the knowledge that someone out there gives a fuck about you. At least a little.
- My dad waiting for us at the bar as he enjoyed a beer=not exactly identity threatening
- Ending something that has been a prominent part of your everyday life for the past few months/years? Not knowing when’s the next time you’re going to find comfort or love in another romantic partner, if ever? Yeah.
The less formed our sense of self is, the more we expect the other person to give us what we should be giving ourselves.
Security, reassurance, a confidence boost, love, comfort.
We find the prospect of ending a toxic relationship anxiety-inducing, even people with a clear and strong sense of self encounter difficulties, because of the way our brains work.
It’s irrational to eat food you hate, just because you ordered it. It’s irrational to keep watching a movie that makes you want to stab yourself in the eye, just because you’re there. Same goes for bad relationships, friendships, jobs…
Things don’t get better, people aren’t right for each other, sometimes no one’s to blame, and sometimes it’s exactly one’s person’s fault. Hey, I’m not pointing fingers, I’m just saying, unless they’ve been in abusive relationships or situationships that have majorly impacted their ability to tell if someone is treating them right:
If someone is thinking of breaking up, that’s a pretty good sign that they should.
I lead from the heart not the head… that’s got me into trouble in my work, I understand that, but someone’s got to go out there and love people and show it.Lady Diana
Ride or dies take pride in leading from the heart. In good relationships, you shouldn’t have to pick. You shouldn’t have to tolerate mediocre love, being treated like shit, abuse of any kind in a relationship with someone you’re meant to be with. For however long you’re “meant” to be with them: be it a month or a lifetime.
If something is meant to be, you won’t force it, you won’t get sad “for no reason”, you won’t doubt yourself, your partner’s feelings and you definitely won’t be thinking of breaking up.
Searching for a book on my list of books I’ve read, lo and behold, literally the only book I forgot to include (I guess it wasn’t too good to leave 😏): Too Good to Leave, Too Bad to Stay: A Step-by-Step Guide to Help You Decide Whether to Stay In or Get Out of Your Relationship.
If my rose-colored glasses what’s meant to be, will be talk isn’t your thing or you’re still unsure if what you read applies to you in any way, shape or form, I highly recommend that book. You might see clearly if what you got is what you want and deserve, or if you’re been watering a dead plant.
You should be leading from the heart and the head.
It’s never too late to leave the movie.