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Do you (really) believe you are responsible for your own happiness?

Updated on February 12, 2013

Whenever I’ve asked someone if they thought they were responsible for their own happiness the natural reflex response I usually get is, “yes”. However as I read articles, hubs, and blogs concerning relationships dealing with heartache, betrayal, and overall unhappiness I am struck by the fact I rarely if ever see anyone accept responsibility for choosing the wrong mate.

Recently a woman wrote an article titled “Women – A man is not a financial plan or an emotional one”. As I begin reading the article I anticipated it was written to inspire women to empower themselves and take charge of their lives. However the article quickly descended into a male bashing tale about how her father mistreated her mother and the family by not being financially responsible or even holding down a job. Her father eventually left her mother and moved on with his life.

Life’s Lessons

The young lady stated her childhood experience taught her to never rely on a man, work hard, and be independent.“My mother lost everything she had because she put her trust in a man and relied on him for financial stability.” In other words the family’s hardship was all due to the father’s lack of responsible behavior.Her mother was given a free pass for choosing this man to be her husband and the father of her children. She was not responsible for her decision to continue to stay with this man who was not contributing to the household.When this man physically abandoned his family it was then the little girl adopted a strong animosity towards men. Never trust a man. (Lesson learned)

Another Perspective

I found myself posting a comment after reading the article. I felt this woman had missed an important part of the lesson. This same type of result could have easily occurred in a lesbian relationship/marriage. Would the lesson then be "never trust a woman"?

A man or woman is not a "financial plan" is sound advice for both sexes. As an old song states: "God bless the child that’s got his own.”

Having said that I don’t think your mother lost her two homes because she relied on a (man). She lost her homes because she chose the wrong man. Life is a personal journey. Each of us gets to choose our own friends, lovers, and spouse. There is no getting around this.

If you go to the store to purchase an apple but buy an onion instead; whose fault is that? Do you curse the onion for not being an apple? No! You learn to become a better “shopper”.

When we choose to blame others for our unhappiness we are rendering ourselves powerless. We get to decide who we will spend our time with or emotionally invest in. Acknowledging this fact is self-empowering because we can learn from our mistakes. Anyone who is unhappy in a relationship and chooses to stay in it is by default choosing to be unhappy. When we change our circumstances change!

I wrote a book titled: My Cat Won’t Bark! (A Relationship Epiphany). Essentially it’s about learning to approach relationships with complete awareness, realistic expectations, as well as using self-empowerment techniques to stick to your own “shopping list”. You really are responsible for your own happiness!

Love is not the enemy

Whether you are a woman or man it is human nature to want to hold and be held by someone, to love and be loved. One just needs to be smart in their selection process. Being independent and emotionally secure gives you options and allows you to be more selective.

End result

I went back to look at the article to see if the writer responded to my comment. Apparently she has removed the article. I suppose I will never know if she bought into the concept of taking responsibility for one's own happiness or if she was angry with my posting another point of view.


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