I’m having a tough week. My computer broke, I have to start paying back my student loans and my business partner broke up with me. In turn, my computer is in the shop, I’m moving to a cheaper place and I no longer have a best friend. When life gives you lemons, they all seem to fall on you at once.
I know this is a relationship column, but business partnerships are very similar to relationships. They both take trust and communication. They both take lots of effort from both parties. And they both tend to end badly, with some sort of financial dispute. In many ways, your business partner and romantic partner are like your best friend, because you rely on them the most out of everyone else. So when your best friend fucks you over and still expects you to be cool with it, you have to learn to draw the line. It’s like walking in on your romantic partner in bed with someone else – you love them, you want to work it out, but they’ve already shown you that they don’t respect you, and respect is the most important thing in a relationship.
There are two types of people – the people who are aggressive and take what they want, and the people who are laid back and let opportunities come to them. I am the latter. Don’t get me wrong – when it comes to what I want I am very driven. But I watch for opportunity; I don’t pressure it to happen. The types of people who tend to come to me tend to think that they can walk all over me. They confuse my laid-back personality for defenseless – that they can treat me however they want and I’ll still be cool with it. And most of the time, I will be. I get that people get mad. I get that people freak out. Most of the time I’m there for them, waiting when they’ve calmed down. I’ve been on the other side – I have empathy for people.
However, that’s how domestic abuse starts. They yell at you when they don’t get their way and you think, They’re just mad. But how far are you going to let it go? What if it leads to hitting or worse – are you going to give them the excuse again that they’re just mad? Maybe you’ll think it’s your fault – that you set them off and they wouldn’t have flown off the handle if you hadn’t responded that way. After all, they told you it was your fault. And you love them. There must be some truth to what they’re saying, right? You understand why they’re upset. People make mistakes. People aren’t perfect.
Stop making excuses for those people!
People, regardless if they’re your boss, a relative, your business partner or romantic partner, should show you respect. Treating you with nothing less is not ok , no matter what the circumstances. Of course, it’s fine if you get into the odd argument. But you know when it’s not just a random argument. You know when you say something like “we need to communicate better” and they yell at you and hang up the phone. First of all, that is not good communication. Second of all, that is not meeting your needs to communicate. When they turn it around on your, saying that it’s your fault – well, that is abusive behavior, and you don’t need that in your life regardless of what role they play in it.
I’ve had many friends who have shown me abusive behavior. I’ve had many partners who have shown me abusive behavior. It’s like they can see an invisible sign that says “push over” on my forehead. Business partnerships are a struggle, and sometimes they can be a power struggle as well, but the one thing that is required is respect towards both parties, and when you have a friend who does not show you respect, you know they will not be a good business partner either. The same thing goes for vice versa in this situation. When they don’t show you respect as a business partner, you know they will not be a good friend. An empowered woman doesn’t need people like that in her life.
You can read My Pleasure every Wednesday at M.L.T.S. Mag. And don’t forget to check out Amanda’s website, Flurt!