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When should we hold on to hope, and when should we just move on?

Updated: Sep 23, 2020

How many of us have found ourselves in those complex scenarios where, after dating someone for months, forming what is undoubtedly a meaningful, beautiful connection, we’re told, “You mean so much to me, and I’m afraid of losing you, but I’m just not ready for a full, committed relationship. I may be someday, but right now, that’s not the case”?

Unfortunately, this seems to be becoming quite frequent, given our consumerist, FOMO-driven society, in which many are always wondering if there’s something better out there. But when we find ourselves as the recipient of this unpleasant news from the person we’re seeing, suddenly, we have to make that ever-daunting decision: “Should I stay in the hopes that it’ll work out? Or should I leave behind everything we’ve built and move on?”

(Side note: if you’re totally fine with this sort of non-committed relationship, you do you. As for all my fellow romantics who’d like a real love story, read on.)

It’s not an easy question to answer. Of course, the true, driving motives behind our desire to hold onto this person may vary tremendously: a sincere love and appreciation for this man, a fear of being alone/feeling abandoned/never finding someone else with whom we can share that connection, etc. The problem is, in our fear of losing this person entirely, we may choose to cling to even the smallest fragments, contenting ourselves with a situation that we know doesn’t completely fulfill us.

In that space, we may focus on the potential. The potential for this person to fulfill a role in our lives or finally make one of our dreams come true. The potential to be our Mr. Right. And at times, we’d rather live in a place of hope and empathy for monsieur's situation, leading us to subconsciously settle. But the truth is, that’s not the real, true, safe love that, deep down, many of us truly seek. The love that so many of us are searching for shouldn't have to come with the disclaimer: "Maybe one day he'll change and be what you're actually looking for." You can't fall in love with potential. And as difficult as it may be to accept, by holding on to something that isn’t truly what you want and need, you’re robbing yourself of your own happiness.

Yes, this person may be exceptional, kind, funny, and someone who makes you feel cherished and cared for in the moments you’re together. But by telling you he's not yet ready for a ‘committed relationship,’ when clearly, you’ve been building something of value, he's keeping one foot out the door at all times. But again, is that really what you want? Because it may be light and fun, and you may tell yourself you're completely fine with it… But deep down, if you know you're searching to build a life with someone, does this seem like the response you'd hope for in your partner?

Of course, the choice is yours. But if you openly express what you want and need in a relationship and that person chooses not to offer that to you, perhaps it's time to find the strength to walk away.

It’s much easier said than done. But each moment we spend dedicating our hearts and minds to someone who isn’t loving us the way we need to be loved is a moment lost with the right person (or being single and fabulous). Because I can guarantee you that there is someone out there who is ready to give you what you’re looking for. Who is ready to love you the way you deserve to be loved. Someone who wants to take that leap and build a future with you.

So I hope these words can help remind you how precious you and your time are. I hope you remember that you are deserving of all the unconditional love that you desire. And as difficult as it may be to walk away, I hope you realize that it will lead you one step closer to the happiness and fulfilment that you are meant to achieve.


I’d love to hear your thoughts and personal stories. If you enjoyed this post, share it with friends! You can also sign up for our newsletter to know when our next article comes out. Bisous, Sabrina

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