I’ve always felt held back by the people I’ve dated in the past. I think a lot of my relationships ended abruptly, they left me without closure.
Because sometimes I ended things fast because I wasn’t ready for anything serious. And sometimes I was strung along without any explanation at all and then left for dead after the break up.
I tried my best to not let those things affect me, but they always have. Those things put my love life in slow motion. When I finally found someone I wanted to date, I had to make all the first moves because when someone else did it I’d get scared and run away. It took a while to make things official, to even convince myself this was 100% what I wanted.
And even now as we live together I get so many pangs of not knowing what I want in life.
Recently I’ve heard that one of my exes has moved on…I don’t keep tabs on them at all because the more distance I put between me and them helped me feel better. But the news made me realize I’m ready to move on too.
You know when you hear about an ex getting engaged, married, having kids and you just feel mad? I used to feel that way a lot. Like I’m the one who put so much time and effort into you only for you to crush me and use your brand new self on someone so much less deserving than me. Yeah, I was bitter.
But after this recent news, a lot of things became much more clear to me. I don’t care about my exes. I don’t care about them one bit. I still think of them from time to time, but it’s almost like hearing my ex moved on set me straight. A lot of my doubts have faded and I’ve finally cut the strings my exes tied to me.
When break ups happen, I think the person who did the breaking up is often overlooked. The person who got broken up with must be so shattered, must need tons of support – but, no one stops to think about how hard it really is to break up with someone.
It takes a lot of courage to end something that has been so important to you. To cut ties with someone you loved, someone whose family has become your family, someone who knows everything about you. It takes courage to flip your life upside down because even though you’re not happy in the relationship, how do you know you’ll be happy outside the relationship?
And while it’s hard to get broken up with, it’s so hard to smash the heart of someone you care so deeply about. For a lot of people, it’s hard to be selfish and put yourself first and realize that the relationship isn’t making you happy anymore.
A lot of people would rather stay in a bad relationship forever than go through all that. They’d rather just settle than face the confrontation. I can’t blame them, especially if it’s just a fizzled relationship. Where there’s no reason to leave, but there’s also really no reason to stay.
I think it takes courage to end a relationship and start over. I admire the people who take this huge step because I know it could not have been an easy one for them. And I hope that everyone has enough self-awareness to get themselves out of something that’s making them unhappy.
I haven’t had contact with any of my exes in almost two years. Luckily, I don’t think any of them care about my blog anymore because I know they’d just be tickled to know I still think about them sometimes.
Of course I do, how could I forget? I still think of the time I got way too drunk at a casual get together in college and the time my middle school “boyfriend” broke up with me through his AIM profile. I think about everything, including my exes.
It’s just here and there, I don’t really follow any of them on social media so that made it easy to escape them. But sometimes a photo comes up in my Timehop, or I tell a funny story that included them to my friends, or I drive by a place that reminds me of them.
And I think about the good times we had a lot. It used to be only bad things, sometimes it still is. Sometimes I still cringe when I think of how many times I drunk called my most serious ex or how I completely shattered the trust of another. But I try not to cling to those things anymore and choose to remember better times. Sometimes I think about how I made the first move and asked him to our sorority date party, how I used to draw all over one boy’s arms in high school during class, how another one used to piggy back me from the driveway to my front door.
But all of those thoughts are very fleeting, that’s the key here. It is of course okay to think about your exes, they were a huge part of your life. I dated one of my boyfriends from age 16-20, that is a very defining chunk of my existence, without him it would’ve been and with him it still was.
If you think about them more than just some fleeting moments, though, you may not be ready to move on. You may not be ready to build another life separate of that heartbreak. And that’s okay too. We can’t just bury our emotions and expect them not to rise from the grave like zombies eventually. We have to accept the things that made us who we are, whether we like them or not.
How do I know when a girl just went through a break up? She starts posting selfies, deep quotes and poetry, and sharing Thought Catalog articles about how being alone is better (at least share my blog posts guys, come on). And then all of her relationship pictures start to fade from her social media. Her profile picture changes to a solo pic or a photo of a girl’s night out. And the status quietly changes to single.
It’s all a little cliche. That whole dying your hair a wacky color after a break up to try to change your identity. People talk about it all the time and poke fun at the girls having their poetry induced break through. They talk about how much she’s changed and how funny it is that she never used to act that way.
Well, they change because break ups change you. They force you to look at yourself as a lone person and understand who you truly are. Maybe you are a blonde at heart, a party girl, or an independent being.
Who cares what anyone else thinks? As if they’ve never had a life shattering break up, as if they’ve never hit their single and ready to mingle phase.
We’re all guilty of it, and even if we weren’t, girl, DO YOU! Do what you have to to find yourself, to feel better and move on. If you have to make out with a lot of people, do it. If you have to talk crap on your ex, do it. If it makes you feel better I did it on a blog for all of the world to see, you can just do it in a group chat. Or start a blog. Why not?
If you have to share poetry about fueling your fucking fire, shout out Christopher Poindexter, then DO it. No one can tell you how to heal. Don’t ever feel silly about the things you are doing to better yourself and move on. I’m rooting for you and every girl who has had their life changed by a break up is rooting for you.
I don’t like my exes, not a single one of them. My relationships/spurts of dating/long-time hook ups ended poorly often. I might’ve not liked them even before we broke up. Sometimes I stopped liking them during the break up process. Other times, we were friendly for a while, but I ultimately stopped liking them. Mostly due to resentment over any mistrust, being cheated on, or just seeing them be happy when they didn’t let me be happy or caused me to be unhappy for a while.
You may think that because I don’t like them, it probably means they did something wrong. And that’s true, but the bad blood doesn’t fall all on them. As much as I’d like to sit here and play victim, I wasn’t always innocent.
I didn’t cheat, I didn’t intentionally try to hurt people, but I did let things go on longer than they should’ve. I did put a lot of time into things I knew weren’t going to work, did act one way and say the opposite.
I accept some of the break up blame. In most cases, I did the breaking up because I either recognized my faults in the relationship or the guy I was dating at the time did something to screw everything up.
I’ve written a lot about my exes, I’ve written a lot about how much I resent them and how far I’ve come since them. But I’ve shrugged off a lot of the blame until now. I might’ve not been the problem that caused us to break up, but I was part of the problem. All I can do now is move on and grow from it and wish them all the best of luck.
I’m not sure why being single seems like it’s the end of the world. I guess no matter how hard I looked at it, no one looked as happy when they were single as they did when they were in a relationship.
There was a good chunk of time for me when being single was like torture. There was also a time where I held onto it real tight, avoiding every relationship possible.
But I never really stopped feeling hopeless. When I was happy being single, I still got lonely. My friends all were in relationships and when they were off doing their boyfriend/girlfriend thing, I was alone. It taught me to be by myself, but it made me think I would always be by myself. When I started to become comfortable alone and do well by myself, I felt even more hopeless that I would never find what my friends had. That I would never find what I was reading about in books or binge watching on Netflix.
And when I was sad being single, I was more than hopeless. I felt that I was hard to love. There had been a time where I had given the boy I loved everything. But then I felt like I had nothing left to give.
It’s normal to feel hopeless when you’re single, whether you’re happy or sad. But even when you give up on yourself, the person that’s right for you won’t be giving up at all. It takes time, patience, and a lot of learning. But you’re not hopeless.