PSA for All The Brokenhearted

I’m not typically one for country music all year long, but it’s been one of those years. Everything is happy and light and lovely, and I think that’s why I haven’t had the same hankering for alternative music this fall. Can’t complain!

Lately, one of my friends has been going through a rough time. Her boyfriend treats her pretty horribly. Long story short, he is very disrespectful, doesn’t give her any positive attention, just wants to sweep their problems (a lot of which HE has caused) under the rug. And it was just one of those painfully obvious moments of “I’ve been on the other end of this conversation before.”

I think we’ve all been there. We want to try, we want to make things work, we want things to be as simple and picture perfect as they were in the beginning. And unfortunately sometimes that’s just not the case. Sometimes you can’t work out the kinks – especially if the kinks aren’t your fault. But you think anyways that you can change the person, that things will go back to how they were.

I stood there, telling her everything my mom had once told me. “You don’t deserve it” “you’ll find somebody better who treats you right” “do you really want to raise children with a guy who treats you like this?” “trust what your family has to say about him – they’ll see what you don’t” all of that.

And oh my gosh once you’re on the other side of that conversation, you realize how RIGHT they are! And it suddenly blows your mind that anyone would settle for being treated like shit!

So I’m gonna go on a little rant:

YOU are the only person to blame for someone treating you like shit. Because YOU are allowing that person to treat you that way.

You need to know your worth. And no, no one deserves to be ignored, bullied, manipulated, emotionally or physically abused. Just because you think you love someone or vice versa.

I was in the same boat. I dated guys who didn’t want to talk to me, I wouldn’t hear from them for weeks because, rather than having a “I’m not feeling this anymore” conversation, they just figured if they stopped I’d go away. I dated guys who used me, from the bedroom to running errands for them. I tried to make things work for another year with someone who CHEATED on me. I tried convincing myself that I didn’t want a relationship just to appease these guys who couldn’t handle a commitment. I thought it was too much drama. It gave me anxiety to even think about being in a relationship again, because all I knew was heartache, jealousy, and disappointment.

And then I met Andrew, and in the first few months I wanted to cry at how well he treated me. He has never said a bad thing about me, to me or his coworkers. He is always willing to communicate with me if we have any issues. He is a selfless boyfriend and lover, and I’ve never felt closer to anyone in my life. We joke that I am the female version of him. He’s met my entire family and they all love him, I’ve met most of his family and they all love me. He is everything I could’ve ever asked for in a relationship, and he loves every little thing about me, and he tells me that every day. For christ’s sake, I’ve written enough blogs about the man!

Please for the love of God, take my advice: Don’t fucking do it. You are worth more than you think. You will meet someone who will love every goddamn thing about you if you are just patient enough to wait for them. Love yourself, be kind to yourself, and be patient. And maybe then you’ll be on the other side of the conversation, wondering how any of your friends could ever settle for garbage. Learn to let go gracefully. If they don’t fight for you, fuck them, they don’t deserve you anyway. You will be treated like the queen/king you are. And you will forever be grateful to that person for loving you every day and showing you how much you should have loved yourself in the first place.

 

Too Strong to Lose

I had an epiphany today. You ever have those moments where when it finally hits you, it’s like you’ve unlocked secrets within yourself? That “aha” moment where it finally makes sense? Very liberating.

Funny enough, it happened because of a video I saw on Facebook. It was about the bond and love between mother and child. Maybe it was the hangover, but it made me very emotional. I have always struggled between wanting children, but being afraid to. There are a number of reasons, for example I’m horrible with doctors, needles, and pain. I’m not that great with kids, either. Not bad, just not great.

Recently a new concern has popped into my mind: everyone always says they never knew how much they could love something until they had a child. But I know this world can be cruel. What happens when my child has her heart broken by a fool who couldn’t see what she was worth? When other children bully him for his interests and passions? Even at my current age, seeing someone I love in pain hurts me deeply. What happens when someone I created, someone I love on a level I can’t comprehend yet, gets hurt? I imagine it will break me to my core. Part of me is afraid of loving someone that much.

Over the years, I have been left heartbroken by a few people, and it has left me with this wall (to use the cliche). I struggle between being guarded and just letting myself feel freely. I have received broken promises, yet each time I am hopeful that maybe it will be different. It’s getting easier not to get my hopes up, and that’s been discouraging to me in a way.

I feel that I have to let things roll off my back and pretend they don’t hurt me, that I have to hold onto this air of not caring so that I can pretend to myself and to others that I’m not bothered. As if feeling something makes me weak.

But it doesn’t.

My epiphany: loving takes courage.

I’ve heard this before, seen it several times, and I’ve always agreed with the statement, but something in me today just clicked and it finally resonated with me.

It takes courage to make yourself so vulnerable to people. I’m not saying throw yourself headfirst into any feelings you may have, but to be open to loving someone with your whole heart, not withholding anything to protect yourself, is a brave act.

As someone who has been hurt in the past, and I’m not the only one, I have been discouraged from any kind of relationship with someone because I don’t want to feel that pain again, I don’t want to be played for a fool again, I don’t want to have my emotions toyed with again. Loving someone, being in a relationship – it’s taxing. It can be emotionally traumatic.

It’s not uncommon for a bad relationship to turn someone off to the idea of love. They feel it is better to be alone and content than give someone permission to affect their emotions. “Space is just a word made up by someone who’s afraid to get close.”

And that’s true, being alone is the safer option. Depending on your viewpoint, it may or may not be easier, but it is safer; you are responsible for your own happiness. Everyone says this as a way of saying “you’ll be okay, that breakup was rough, but you’ll be okay,” but I think it needs to be acknowledged that yes you were with someone and they made you happy and that’s okay too. I get why you’re sad, and I’m hurting for you, I know they made you happy, but you are also capable of making yourself happy. No, you don’t need a relationship to be happy, but being that close with someone, for most people, is something happy.

So for someone like me who has had some of their happiness ripped away from them by the very people that provided it, it takes courage to be willing to try again. To try and not let your past relationships interfere with a new one, to be excited over new beginnings.

(This stands true for those in platonic relationships as well as romantic ones.)

It’s okay to be afraid, “courage is not the absence of fear.” Fear is healthy. But it’s important to be willing to try again. I feel that I have a lot of love to give to my friends, my family, and my future partner, and I just want to share it with them all. Love is a beautiful thing to share.

I know that one day I will love someone deeply, and they won’t take it for granted. They will keep their promises, they will be brave enough to love me too, and I will be surprised by how much I love them. I will ache when my child is hurting because it is a genuine human emotion, and I will be courageous enough to feel love, joy, and sadness so deeply. I will be happy with myself for taking the leap, and I will be surprised by how strong I am because of it.

Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage. -Lao Tzu