What To Do When Your Partner Is Making A Huge Mistake With A Major Life Decision

If you're anything like me, you're always right. Jokes aside, when you're in a relationship, you and your partner are bound to face occasional disagreements about major life choices. For instance, if your partner is about to accept a new job you know they won't enjoy but it's a huge salary bump, what do you do? If your partner is about to make a huge mistake, there are delicate ways to handle the situation that would prevent big arguments no one wants to get into.

To learn more about how to best navigate steering your partner in the right direction (because of course, you know best), I spoke with therapist Nicole Richardson and social worker and therapist Allison Abrams. The most important lesson is to be sure you're approaching your S.O. from a place of love and understanding, instead of judgment and criticism. You want your partner to understand why you think their decision is wrong for them – so be sure you aren't attacking them right off the bat. Here's what Richardson and Abrams had to say about interfering properly when you know your S.O. is making a big mistake.

Try to understand their perspective.

"If this decision feels dangerous or unhealthy, then ask them what this decision means to them," Nicole Richardson tells Elite Daily. "How do they feel it will help them solve their problem? When people feel heard, understood, and cared about, they are often far more open to feedback."

If you frame your conversation around you attempting to understand why they want to make this decision, you may gain insight you hadn't considered and end up actually agreeing with your partner's choice. There may be something about their choice that you had missed or didn't fully understand before your partner could clear the air. Magic happens through communication, ladies.

Express concern for their well-being.

If you're approaching territory where you think your partner is making a bad decision, and they haven't asked for your opinion, but you know it's a dangerous choice, remember to come from a place of care and concern.

"If you feel this is a decision that really will be harmful or have a significantly negative effect on your partner – or on the relationship – expressing concern is certainly warranted," Allison Abrams tells Elite Daily. "Preface the conversation with a reminder of how much you care about your partner and their well-being, and then speak from the heart."

Adams continues, "it's important to express your concerns in a non-judgmental, compassionate manner, avoiding any harsh criticism."

If they're set on their decision, respect it.

No matter how much you love your partner, sometimes people need to learn from their own mistakes – especially if your partner doesn't believe it's actually a mistake.

"As difficult as it may feel, sometimes we have to allow the people we love to fail so that they can grow, learn, and get stronger," Richardson says.

Abrams adds that "respecting your partner's self-determination" is important: no matter your own opinions, your partner's decisions are ultimately up to them. Your role, as significant other, is to express your concern if you think it's dire, listen to your partner's thought-process, and if they're still adamant about it, then it's up to you to support them.

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