You’re Lost: How to Hold On to Your Identity

You’re lost how to hold on to your identity

When you start a new relationship, whether it is with a new friend or being a spouse in a marriage, the experience can leave you feeling overjoyed. You are trying to have a connection, a bond that brings you and your special someone closer together. While this is a good idea, you have to be careful not to lose your own identity. It is important to remember that individuality is what drew the other person to you in the first place.


It is not uncommon in new relationships to start taking on other people’s habits and lose your own in the process. The changes in you are so subtle, you don’t realize them until after the relationship changes or dissolves. Then you are left wondering where that person is you where before you got involved. You say to yourself, “What happened to me?”


Outside of being a wife, mother, husband, father, employee, you have to have an identity that is all yours. With so much going on in your daily life, it can be a struggle hanging on to your individuality. Listed below are a few suggestions to help you not lose who you are.

Do me

Spend time (daily, weekly, etc.) to do something you enjoy. Whether it is by yourself or with someone else, the most important thing is that you take some time to “do you.”

Keep close contact

Make sure to keep in touch with friends and family while in your new relationship. It can be difficult, but even if it is a text or a social media post, at least check in to say hello. If possible, set up a lunch or coffee date. This gives you an opportunity to vent, swap stories, or get a fresh perspective on an issue/concern.

Safe space

You shouldn’t feel bad for say no, especially if it is something that makes you feel uncomfortable. Setting up boundaries lets the other person know your comfort level, which you have every right to have. If the other individual person cares for you, he or she would want you to feel good all the time.


Malyka Cardwell is a Couple and Family Therapist at Philadelphia MFT. She is skilled in working with individuals and couples focusing on areas such as sexual abuse, infidelity, intimacy building, anxiety, friendship counseling and issues pertaining to adolescents.

More by Malyka Cardwell

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