Can You Help Your Boyfriend Or Girlfriend Change? 10 Women Who Tried It Reveal Their Struggles

Time and time again, we've been told that people don't change. That being said, it's hard to give up on the fantasy of changing someone, especially a romantic partner who has habits that are less than lovable. But is it ever actually possible? Can it ever really, truly be done? Can you help your boyfriend or girlfriend change!? In a recent Reddit AskWomen thread, ladies responded with their own personal experiences on the matter and, unfortunately, it looks like the answer to the question usually tends to be "no." Don't believe me? Take their words for it.

She Realized After Three Years That He Was Never Going To Change

After expecting the same thing from over 3 years I guess I had enough of waiting. No one will change for you, they have to want to change for themselves.

/u/baconpancakes262

She Eventually Learned That He Was Never Going To Be The Romantic Guy She Wanted Him To Be

Was dating a guy who hadn't really had a serious girlfriend before, so I sort of assumed his lack of affectionate gestures was just due to inexperience. When he did nothing for our second Valentine's Day together despite my specifically asking for him to make a small effort, I realized it wasn't that he didn't know how to be romantic, he just didn't care.
Same guy also never talked about taking the relationship further, commitment, etc. He bought a house without telling me within our first year of dating - OK, I can't expect him to plan his life around me when he doesn't even know if we're going to last. He let his friend move in with him after said friend's current roommate moved out of their shared apartment, in order to save some money to get his own place - OK, fine, it's just temporary and he's doing a nice thing. But when he told me his friend was buying a house, but instead of moving out was planning to rent it out to his girlfriend and her friends while still living with my boyfriend, I realized he really wasn't planning on things progressing anytime soon. :\

/u/jcpianiste

He Refused To Accept The Fact That He Had a Drinking Problem

He was an alcoholic. Had already been to rehab a few times. Told himself that he didn't have a drinking problem because he set rules for himself (e.g. only drinking on non-worknights). But he would get drunk and explode at me. Take days off work when he wanted to drink. Miss important things because he decided to get smashed the night before. We broke up a few times because of it and I told him he needed to be sober if he wanted to be with me. He acquiesced and we had a happy period. He moved in with me. Then a few months later decided he wanted to drink again, why couldn't I understand it, I was being controlling, etc. It was a mess. Kicked him out a while ago, he still drunk calls me crying about why I don't love him anymore.

/u/fiveminutedelay

She Realized She'd Never Be Able To Fix Him

For me it wasn’t so much as a “maybe he’ll change for me” but maybe I’ll be the one that can fix him. It took me about 3 years of emotional & some physical abuse & cheating to realize that his addiction & his demons ran too deep for me to fix. One day I woke up and said I can’t do this anymore and walked away.
It’s been 4 years since that day and I haven’t looked back since.

/u/thatgirlfromclass99

She Thought Graduating From College Would Make Him More Financially Responsible, But It Didnt

He lived at home and paid no rent, had free tuition for his entire 5-year degree, and a job making $16CAD per hour the entire time. When I first met him he was broke and I assumed he or his family had been through an emergency. When he graduated a year and a half later, he had $0 to his name and started taking out loans to go to grad school. Wed been talking about moving out together but he spent literally all of his year's income on beer, records and games. I realized this was not going to change and started reassessing the relationship.

/u/gateauxes

They Wanted Each Other To Be Different People And The Change Never Happened

We'd started dating in high school and we were both guilty of expecting the other person to change. By the time we were in university, we both changed a lot and we weren't really compatible anymore but it was like neither of us could admit it. We disagreed on a lot of things, and wanted the other person to be someone different, but I don't know, I guess we both just were so comfortable it never occurred to either of us that these issues were things worth breaking up over. We both were just waiting for the other person to come around.
I went away for a month, for a summer abroad course. And a lot of the people on the course were similar to me, in terms of interests and life goals, and just being around all of these people who wanted what I wanted and liked the things I liked, it made me realise that it wasn't fair for either of us to be waiting for the other person to change.

/u/PurrPrinThom

She Realized Things Would Be OK Even If He Didn't Change

When I was first dating my bf, I was hesitant because we did not have the same religion. I struggled with this a lot because I always had the idea forced into my head that my partner HAD to be Christian or else we will be destined for divorce. Ever since I was little my family pressed this on me. I’ve been with my bf for almost 4 years now and I’ve slowly come out of the confinement that religion has held me in, and I couldn’t be happier. I don’t want to change him, I can’t. I would never, and I’m happy that I’m not longer restricted in my religion. It has opened me up to better things

/u/Miimmoouuu

"Once A Cheater, Always A Cheater" Proved True In Her Case

I genuinely thought I had changed him, but then his friend had the decency, and I guess guilt, to finally tell me that he was having sex with two other women regularly and countless one night stands behind my back.
He still texts me to this day trying to get back together. Pathetic.

/u/PM_ME_A_DISPLAYNAME

She Eventually Realized He Was Never Going To Graduate College

Had a bf who was a perpetual college student. He was supposed to graduate “next semester” the entire two years we were together. I got so fed up.

/u/lexafrex

He Wasn't Different With Her Like She Had Hoped He'd Be

Well, several friends told me that he wasn't the most honest guy, and used to cheat his exes, but I thought, maybe he'll be different with me. Then, he started to call me by his ex name "Alyssa" several times ahhh and then he cheated on me with her.

/u/Iza_V

Of course, there are exceptions to every rule and maybe your relationship really is that one exception! That being said, more often than not, people really don't change.

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