Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

Why do us girls bother with relationships when they cause so much hassle?

(122 Posts)
superstarheartbreaker Wed 10-Jul-13 23:28:35

I think many of us hold out for the ideal love that we see in the films but goodness; this forum has made me wonder 'is it all worth it?''

Things I don't miss about being with a bloke;
Putting up with addictions such as pot.
Jealousy
Having to compromise
Emotional abuse
worrying about being left.
Worrying about unplanned pregnancy.
The bad break-ups.

I don't even miss sex a great deal although I think the intimacy and hugs are nice.

Olyphin Thu 11-Jul-13 00:13:43

I think it's because women are socialised to think they NEED to have a partner, that they are less than others if they are single, and therefore will put up with a hell of a lot more just to have a relationship. Men, realistically, won't put up with as much or tend to have more "deal breakers". If women were encouraged to focus on themselves for value and self esteem rather than their relationships the world would be a very different place.

That being said, there are nice men out there and being in a good relationship is something which can greatly enhance a person's life. It's not surprising that anyone would want that, regardless of the pitfalls.

Diagonally Thu 11-Jul-13 00:17:50

Relationships don't have to be like that at all. Most of mine haven't been, although there was one Prince among Twats. I'm certain he came into my life so that I could see how bad things could be and know never go back there again.

You are not picking the right kind of person!

WafflyVersatile Thu 11-Jul-13 00:43:51

Because long-term singledom is dull and cats are no substitute for sex.

Bogeyface Thu 11-Jul-13 01:00:20

Because sometimes, just sometimes we meet a man who is caring, loving, unselfish but not a doormat, hard working but not a workaholic, a good father but not at the expense of his relationship, supportive but not controlling, generous but not stupid with money and good in bed.

Sadly, they are usually married to someone else, but it gives us hope that there really are some good ones out there.

I had one once. He was wonderful, and he finished with me because he got a crush on my friend and didnt think it was fair to keep seeing me (you see? Honourable too!). I was heartbroken ( we were both very young, he was 20 I was 18), and especially when he did see my friend for a while, with my blessing. She treated him badly and cheated on him. Eventually he got together with someone else. He became a millionaire, they got married and now have the perfect life with a son and a daughter both in private school.

But......if I hadnt been too proud to ask him and he hadnt been too embarrassed to ask me, I think we could have got back together. Lesson learned, never let a good one go! We are still friends in the way that we will have a good long chat and a catch up if we bump into each other but we dont have each others numbers. And his wife is lovely. Bitch grin

Bogeyface Thu 11-Jul-13 01:21:22

Also, I have realised that I see things in men that I would never have seen when I was younger and that has made me much much pickier.

A friend of STBX's is wonderful, I think the absolute world of him and we get on like a house on fire. Whenever he visits we have a great time, and me and his wife clicked within seconds of meeting and became lifelong friends. They are fantastic people. But........I could never be married to him, even though 20 years ago I would have crawled on my knees to date him. He is rich, good looking, funny, charming and generous...to a point. He is also very controlling, tends towards OCD in terms of tidiness, and can be tight with money regarding his wife.

Like I say, 20 years ago none of that would have triggered my radar but now I think that while he is an amazing friend who supported both STBX and I through some tough times and happily opened his house to us, I could never live with him. His wife has a fantastic career and has her own money and deals with his arsiness by ignoring it and doing what she wants anyway! But for a laid back person like me, it would be far too much like hard work!

libertine73 Thu 11-Jul-13 01:52:02

I'm in a relationship of 12 years, and the only one of your list that applies to us is the compromise.

you just need to find the right man for you.

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 11-Jul-13 06:07:51

Most human relationships have a bit of hassle & compromise attached. Relatives, friends, work colleagues, random strangers... even pets... unless you're planning on becoming a hermit and withdrawing from society, you have to find ways to engage that make the best of it. Same applies to romantic relationships and yes, some men/women are a PITA. Is it worth it? If you find someone you really connect with, it's a risk worth taking.

comingintomyown Thu 11-Jul-13 06:44:05

Asking myself the same question at the moment

I am coming up to 4 years single after a lifetime of always being with someone.

My self esteem is higher, my moods and sense of wellbeing are on an even keel and I run my life as I see fit. I can see the benefits of being with a nice male partner and being in love the trouble is I dont see any men fitting that bill.

If I moved in circles where everyone wasnt married it would be easier but I have the contradiction of being the only single one and seeing the majority of their marriages as flawed/miserable.

I think sensibly I will begin to think if I meet a man I like then yes its worth the risk BUT not overlook those flags in order to be with him and I will never have a live in relationship again !

Ruralninja Thu 11-Jul-13 07:24:23

because humans are social animals, lots of men are lovely, but there's no rush settle with any old Neanderthal!

Vivacia Thu 11-Jul-13 07:34:08

My response is the same as libertine's - the only item in your list I recognise is compromise.

peacefuloptimist Thu 11-Jul-13 07:48:55

I do sometimes think this. Relationships are such hardwork. Anytime you get complacent some other issue crops up that you need to deal with and find a solution/compromise for. I think the problem is essentially humans are flawed. None of us are perfect. So really it's about finding the person who has the sort of flaws you don't mind. grin What works for one person doesn't necessarily work for someone else.

bugsaway Thu 11-Jul-13 07:52:19

i dont know if it is how girls are brought, the society around us or our genetic make up but I think there something that makes us weak within relationships with men. I say this because we seem to have a lot of needs that men dont have. The desire to be close, the desire for that perfect guy, the desire for the guy to do x,y,z and invariably when they dont behave like that we are upset. Its almost like a cruel twist of nature.

I have said to myself for many years why bother with marriage, why bother with men in general. Most of them are useless when left to their own devices. I just look around and I see a lot of man-children. That might sound a bit harsh but women often end up playing a mother like role for men. Women are always tidying up after them. Women always reminding them to fix the shower, mow that lawn. Its a constant nag because they are in fact like children.

Im married but not happily so, for many reasons. I have children and his role as a parent is even disappointing. So much so I feel like mother and father, even though he provides financially very well.

I might sound ungrateful to some but still I think, is this it? a life of this? Constant loggerheads etc. So your post resonates with me OP. I get you completely.

I think your friends wife is doing what most women end up doing - ignoring the husbands behaviour and getting on with it. Isnt that what men do all the time? Theres something in that.

I bother because I like men and really enjoy being in a (good) relationship. I've been very lucky with the men I have had relationships with, so that perhaps colours my opinion.

However, it is much preferable to be alone IMO, than being in a dysfunctional relationship.

peacefuloptimist Thu 11-Jul-13 08:14:40

Sorry for thread hijack but Bugsaway your post resonates with me. I'm one of those losers who made a list of what they wanted their perfect partner to be like so I very much knew what I was looking for. My DH probably was most of if not all the points and at the start of our relationship I felt like I was in a dream and this was too good to be true. However, as time went on I realised that there were a lot of important things I should have put on the stupid list that I didn't think of. For example good father. Since we have had dc my regard for DH has dropped a couple of notches. It's not that he is not a good father he is and loves ds too pieces as well as financially providing him with a brilliant life which I didn't have when I was a child. However good father is so abstract. What does it mean to be a good father? At the time I didn't realise for me that meant someone who wanted to actively engage with the care of their child rather then be bullied in to it. Who didn't need to be reminded that child needs x, y or z and in fact would think about their child needs rather then needing to be told. Who put his child's comfort well ahead of his own etc. I still love my DH and respect him as a person (I wish I was more like him in some respects) but he has definitely disappointed me recently.

burberryqueen Thu 11-Jul-13 08:19:07

sorry to be pedantic/whatever but we are not "girls" any more

superstarheartbreaker Thu 11-Jul-13 08:24:28

Sorry 'women'. I don't mind being called a girl.
I think compromise is good to a point but so many of my friends compromise so much. One woman I know is thinking of giving up her own house to move away from her family etc because her dp refuses to move to her home town. She has children.
Other women are 'not allowed' to go out without their men. confused

JessicaBeatriceFletcher Thu 11-Jul-13 08:27:11

There will, of course, be some men out there thinking the exact same things about women. Women can be addicted to something, be jealous, be emotional abusers, 'oops' their partner into a pregnancy...

There are men out there who are hopeless relationship material and there are women out there who are hopeless relationship material. Occasionally, people can have been completely useless in all previous relationships and suddenly find Mr/Miss Right and totally sort themselves out.

At the end of the day we all CHOOSE who we are in a relationship with. If we're not happy, we can choose to sort it or leave. But if you continually find issues with every single man you date or have a relationship with, there may be something wrong with your radar!

burberryqueen Thu 11-Jul-13 08:27:47

"Sorry 'women'. I don't mind being called a girl"
yes but if you think about it calling women 'us girls' like we all victims of dreadful men together self perpetuates stuff.
I am not a "girl" I am a strong woman who doesn't need an inadequate man to validate myself.

Bogeyface Thu 11-Jul-13 08:29:27

Whats the issue Burberry? Age has nothing to do with what we call ourselves, and "us girls" is a tongue in cheek, inclusive way of describing ourselves. Would you have the same issue with "the boys"?

FFS, there are more important things to get snooty about!

JessicaBeatriceFletcher Thu 11-Jul-13 08:30:09

superstar - people choose to move away from family for a partner a lot of the time. For example, if your friend is a SAHM and not earning while her DP has a good, well paid job which he would struggle to find in the current climate in her home town, it may well be sensible for your friend to move to his town. That seems to me to be a sensible compromise. It doesn't necessarily imply (although it could be in some cases) controlling behaviour.

equinox Thu 11-Jul-13 08:30:40

bugsaway I think you have hit the nail bang on the head here! Well done you. Men ARE like children. If left to their own devices they rarely can fend for themselves I have been single 8 years and did not even think to seek out a partner until my son went to school i.e. when he was 4. I was put off men by my son's father and was nowhere near ready.

Since then I have met lots of men for fun casual sex and it has been an interesting phase but now I seek something more deep and meaningful. However I do not feel I need marriage, I have been married 3 times before but it does not suit me, I would like part-time lover and true friend more a soul companion but not controlling - kind and caring.

I would like a relationship but do NOT need one it is a good place to be. It is just more expensive on our own I find and raising a child alone without family support is well hard for me. My lot feels quite unlucky at times.

Fortunately I have found a womens support group to go to to discuss anxiety and depression and this is a real breakthrough. The issues are NOT to do with no boyfriend indeed I had these issues long before I broke up with the ex. I really do feel this route will cheer me up no end.....

Most men feel threatened with independence unless they are a rare 'new man' - unless we are living eg. London where I used to live - I live in Derbyshire noawadays which is quite crippling on the man hunting stakes lol my ideal partner seems more like a distant dream these days!

I think once my son gets less demanding i.e. in his teens and when he needs me less I will just get a dog and make do lol. I have guys' numbers for casual sex that will keep me going until I get a nice one - maybe I will and maybe I won't - besides which all the men I find that I actually like are sick!!!!

Sorry about such a long thread ladies have a great day!!

burberryqueen Thu 11-Jul-13 08:31:37

I have been through phases on this one.
it is about mindset though - like I said the 'us girls' of this post seems to be making us 'victims' of nasty men.
just my opinion.

JessicaBeatriceFletcher Thu 11-Jul-13 08:32:46

Equinox - "Men ARE like children"

I call sexist bollocks. SOME men might be. Plenty of women can be like children too.

At least you put the word "most" in front of "men feel threatened with independence". Still sexist bollocks though.

Bogeyface Thu 11-Jul-13 08:34:57

I took "us girls" to mean, you know, us. The point would have been the same had she said women, ladies, females, vagina owners......

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now