Women are afforded the ease of starring in one of two big roles when it comes to relationships. The first being, the popular role of the damsel-in-distress, we've seen her before, bewildered pretty girl, dusty lonely road, insert flat tire, cue in dramatic music, swoon in handsome gent to the rescue. The second role, contrary to the first, would be the infamous 1980's Enjoli perfume girl materialized. She's the woman who can: bring home the bacon, fry it, freeze it, remix it, and even find a sustainable way to 'Go Green' with it and use it to save on the next big bill. In this role, any scripted lines of docility are eclipsed by a strong lead in assertiveness. So what's so wrong about women acting in either of these fashions?

For many women inside a new relationship or long standing commitment, fighting the desire to break out of what they view as their "given" role is hard. Of course it would be, if the role you have accepted is one so far from the true you? Or, if the role you are trying to discard is one that's innate to the fabric that makes you... you?

If you are feeling that you have to conform to a role in order to be accepted by a significant other, than you are doing yourself a great disservice.
And likewise, if you feel that you must constantly downplay your role in order for your significant other to shine in their role, than are you playing best supporting actress to your partner, but hardly a leading role in your own life.

Robbing from your self-esteem in order to give to your significant others' self-esteem, can lead to an internal path of destruction and eventually resentment.

Here are a few quick steps that can save you:

1. Recognize assertive is not a curse, but a gift. And when appropriately used, gifts bare more gifts.

2. Begin to compliment your differences which will bring closeness, rather than criticize your differences which will create distance.

3. Model what you want to see, rather than be a Drill Sergeant with orders, demonstrate a certain action you want to see in your partner by doing it, not stating it.

4. Study your subject, if your partner is not one to jump into their leading role, find out more about what they believe their leading is,or not-so-leading-role is about. How do they feel about the role they are playing in their own life and yours?

5. Give credit, where credit is due. No box office movie can sign off, without recognizing every little role that pulled off the big production. Likewise, your partner might choose to tackle bigger roles when first given credit for the smaller ones.

These few steps can help you recognize that whether you choose to wear the skirt or the pants, it's okay to still be a lady in an assertive way.

Author's Bio: 

Sudani Thorne is a writer, producer, and empowerment speaker who also writes under the (motivational) handle of "SaySu"