Originally Posted by copperhead
I really don't know how to ask this more clearly.
Start by defining what you mean as "failure" and "wrong."
To me, doing it "wrong" means not giving a hoot about other people's feelings, going into things just for your own personal gain, and using people to satisfy your needs without consideration to their own needs. In general, "doing it wrong" means "being an asshole." So if you don't want to do it wrong, just don't be an asshole. Simple as that...
Really, you can't avoid "people getting hurt." We don't live in bubbles. Just like parents can't protect their kids from getting hurt, partners can't protect each other from getting hurt. The best you can do is "try." The easiest way to try not to hurt anyone is this: don't be an asshole. Treat people the way you want to be treated.
NYC is 100% spot-on, in that "getting hurt" is often a choice we make. When two people can't see eye-to-eye, it's a choice whether we take it personally and act like we've been victimized, rather than accept that things don't always work out and focus on moving forward with life. You can't make that choice for someone else, and there's really nothing you can do to force someone to make that choice. The best you can do is choose partners who seem to have a good sense of reality, who take responsibility for their feelings, who take accountability for their own roles in their problems, and who focus on growing. In other words, you can't make someone into a better person, but you can choose people who want to make themselves into better people.