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The List: Should We Change Who We are for Our Lover?

Written by: Wali Barefield

Recently I watched a movie on Amazon Prime called “Alex and The List “. The movie was about a guy who receives a list from his girlfriend with the things that she wanted him to change about himself. Immediately after seeing the movie, I begun to imagine if someone I loved gave me a list and how I would respond. Knowing myself, I would have been hurt and responded in a defensive way.

Years ago, when I was in a relationship, I was asked verbally to change different things about myself by my girlfriend. At the time, I made the changes. Mainly because I loved her and I wanted to make her happy. After we broke up, I found it difficult to remember who I was. I made so many changes to my personality to please her that I became insecure about myself. From that time forward, I promised myself to never change for anyone.

If your lover gave you a list of all the things that they wanted you to change about yourself, how would you respond? Would you make the changes?

The truth is that it is not a simple black and white answer. There is some gray in it. Why? Because it will depend on what your lover is asking you to change about yourself. I strongly believe that if the changes that are being asked of you are to prevent you from harming yourself and others (such as: heavy drinking, drugs, abusive behavior, cheating, etc.) then you should make the changes or seek help from a professional to assist you.

However, certain changes to your personality or mentality should not be done so easily or at all. The saying “Love me for who I am, not who you want me to be” is known by many people. If your mate genuinely loves you, then why do they want to make changes to you. They should love you for who you are. Everyone has good and bad sides of their personality, so isn’t it important to be able to accept all the sides of the person you love, not just the good side. If they love you, then they should accept your strengths and flaws. However, we know that is easier said then done.

So, I ask you again, if you received a list from your mate would you make the changes?


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