I’ve been watching Suits in the past weeks with my husband. It all started with my being curious to figure out who the new Duchess really was as an actress because I didn’t have a clue. Naturally now, I have my eyes on her character Rachel. I must admit, I was “royally” annoyed by her from the get go, but somewhere in a middle of third season, I could find a clear strong why that I can actually blog about.
The relationship between Rachel and Mike Ross in a show is actually fairly complicated from the start. The whole premise of Mike being a fraud in general is something that is not easy to carry in real life. Namely, there is no freedom when you know you have to hide. Surely, this is fiction and the character of Mike had such a sad childhood losing both parents that will probably have audience sympathize with him.
But here is what Rachel does that lots of women do (and men too probably): she does what she wants and not what works. Namely, when she cheats on Mike and he asks her for some space to deal with taking that image out of his head, she continually comes to talk to him to apologize, to explain, to convince him to forgive. This is the opposite of giving someone space. And by the way, I know what it’s like to be there, to feel so strongly about something that you feel you just simply must unload it to the person you love, but when someone asks us for space, what we need to give them is space.
You see, when women say NO and a man keeps going at her anyway, we consider that abuse. Consider that when a man asks you not to call, to give him space or alike, that not doing that is just as bad. In fact, the more you do it, the more you are actually proving how selfish and undeserving of a second chance you really are. People say I am sorry and insist on it to make themselves feel good, not because the “I am sorry” actually helps the other person. Now, saying it is a good start, it shows you regret what you did and that is a good thing, but repeating “I am sorry” doesn’t repair the mistake made. Time heals it and taking actions that show you are being different now do too.
Many women are driven by wanting a guarantee in relationships: “Oh, if he can just forgive me, then things can be back to normal,” or “if he promises me to be there, then I can just relax and will do better” etc. This is normal. Women need to feel safe in relationships and when that is compromised, we feel a little off balance. Again, I have been there too. But our being out of balance is still not a reason to not give someone else something they are asking for, in a case of Mike and Rachel, space.
I say this so often I feel like I am boring everyone, but rest assured, I can back it up with more than a decade of study: we don’t “find” people, we attract them. So if relationship in front of us is not happening, we are the ones who need to change the dial, not them. We can’t control other people no matter how tempting that may be. It’s not possible. The only thing we can shift is who we are and what we do. If you want someone to give you a chance in life, when they ask you for space, you give them space. By doing this, you are proving to be easy to be with, you take no effort and people are most likely going to be OK having you around. If you keep on insisting on reasons why they should change their mind, even if they take you back, they will always know you are a “royal” pain in the butt and they will not like being around you, for the simple reason: you don’t let them be.
Men, I find, are really good in detecting women around them who allow them to be themselves, who make them look like heroes and the ones that make them feel like they are constantly falling short, and making them feel like what they are asking is not ok to ask for, as if they are wrong all the time. So when a man says he wants something, no matter how you feel about it, let him have it and then go on and forgive yourself the mistake you made instead of running after him for forgiveness and approval. If you can do that, something in that relationship may be possible. Otherwise, it’s a matter of time when it will be over and it will definitely be a drag along the way.
It’s been a while since I actually had to sit on my hands when my fiance at the time, now husband, once asked me to give him a bit of time to forgive something I did. I remember doing it. It wasn’t easy but it gave him space to forgive me at his own pace and it gave me space to actually forgive myself because regardless of our relationship, that turned out awesome, my relationship to myself always comes first.
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PS I don’t endorse the show Suits. I loved the first season but then it spiraled down in my view. Watch it at your own risk 🙂