Consider the dynamics of any relationship.
To grow together, there must be mutual love, respect, trust, effort, communication, support, gratitude, patience, compatibility. Both people in a relationship, romantic or otherwise, must work as a team to maintain their bond; both people must have the desire to make the relationship strong and long-lasting.
When there is an imbalance of power or effort, the relationship assumes a different dynamic. When one partner controls or abuses the other, when one partner stops trying, when one partner continually contaminates the relationship, it stops working. There can’t be abuse/disrespect and an expectation that the relationship will remain the same. There can’t be unlimited demands/greed on one side and unlimited generosity/understanding on the other. There can’t be coldness/distance and the expectation of intimacy or warmth. There can’t be a lack of communication and the expectation for effective resolutions to any problems that arise. There can’t be unaccountability, blame, criticism and the absence of defensiveness or resentment. We can’t choose the behavior and the reaction(s) to our behavior. Our choices, our actions dictate what happens next.
What we must remember is this: We are responsible for only how we behave in any relationship, romantic, familial, platonic. We must continually ask ourselves what we bring and how we contribute. What we put into our relationships is usually what we get from them (provided the relationship is a healthy one). We reserve the right to end any relationship that becomes/continues to be dysfunctional because we deserve better than that.
As always, we’re here to help.