I may be wrong, but I think the reason we try to change people in relationships is so they can better meet our needs. If they would just adjust that thing or do a bit more of this other thing, we would fall in love with them more and they would make us happier.
I think this is wrong.
If you are unable to love someone despite their flaws; if they do not meet your emotional needs, you should never date them in the first place. All the bet-hedging, the they-may-still-change-hoping, the if-I-let-them-go-I-may-not-find-another-calculating has to stop! Now.
I will tell you a story.
When I was 15, I met a lovely guy. We both liked music and had endless conversations. We loved each other’s company. He asked me out, which was all well and good. But, at the time I was really overweight. His condition for going out with me was I had to lose weight.
Even at 15, I could tell that losing weight should not be a prerequisite for a relationship. Any relationship. We never went out and I lost weight 6 months later, to prove a point. (Anger does miraculous things). Six months after that, I dated one of the most eligible men in University. That was a mistake. I didn’t love him. I was proving another point – that someone that good looking and desirable wanted me.
So I now believe that you shouldn’t date someone if you already have a list of things they must change in order to make you happy. People resist being manipulated. It’s heartbreaking for someone to know that the one they love doesn’t feel they’re good enough. And as long as the person doesn’t change, you will be irritated by them and never feel emotionally satisfied.
So while I understand the daily compromises people make as they become accustomed to one another, I strongly think you shouldn’t date someone if you need them to change. Leave them for another worthier than you.