First, The Betrayal:
Over the weekend I found out/ confirmed that a guy I was into was actually a huge liar and a cheat. Pretty much everything he said to me was a lie, and was superficial. It was a very sick moment, to find out that I had been betrayed and lied to so easily, that I had allowed it to happen to myself, that I had given quite a bit to this guy – who in turn, didn’t care in the same way that I did. I felt guilt and shame because there was a part of me that never had really trusted him, and I didn’t listen. There was part of me that wasn’t surprised at all by his lies and by his two-timing. I didn’t heed the ‘red flags’ (in things he said, did, and even advice from friends) that popped up during the time we were together – I just blew past them all and hoped and dreamed that maybe, just maybe, I could be the one to “fix” him. But after spending awhile feeling sad, and angry and of course, brainstorming all sorts of creative ways to get back at him in my head (because “he should have to feel the hurt I feel! He should know what it’s like! He needs to get a taste of his own medicine!”), I finally came to a moment of acceptance. I finally calmed down, and realized that I’m not one to seek revenge. I don’t have time for it. I realized that the more time I spend in my own mind thinking about how he hurt me and how deserves to hurt too, the more I give him the power that he wants – and the more I just keep hurting myself.
Then, Wondering Why:
The truth is – I know that he is already hurting more. He’s already gotten to such a sad place in his life that in order to feel good about himself, he needs to have several girls wanting him, and going after him. He needs that attention to feel good about himself and to forget or ignore his problems in life. I put myself in his shoes for a moment, and realized how truly sad his life is. The truth is that he has and will continue to put up with the company of just about any girl – as long as he doesn’t have to be by himself around them. He knew the right words to say, how to be funny and to joke about all the right things… but he never told his own secrets or concerns. Instead, he was extremely well-versed in movies – perhaps because it’s easier (and safer) to “relate” to others through movies than it is to use actual stories from your life. And to a certain extent, I know what that’s like. When I first entered treatment, I never told stories during lunch about myself. I would always relate to others’ stories by using examples from TV shows I watched, or something I saw in the news. It worked to deflect attention away from myself – so that no one could have the opportunity to get to know me well enough. I was so afraid that if someone did get to know me, they might find out how fucked up things were in my head. They might find out how much of my life and shit I didn’t have together – despite my outward appearance of seemingly happiness and perfection.
Knowing and Understanding the Why:
I know all too well what it’s like to keep yourself so busy, to try to distract yourself day in and day out with work, athletics, shopping, social meetups, food rules, anything – just so that you never have a moment to yourself. So you will never have time to have to think about all the problems and the issues in your life – the hurts, the regrets, the shame. And heaven forbid, if you start to think about them, then you might have to figure out how to deal or cope with them – and that is terrifying. It’s a vicious cycle – no matter what someone’s “vice” may be. Mine just happened to be food related. I can’t even begin to guess what this guy’s might be, but at this point, whatever. I know how painful it is – how scary and uncomfortable it is to face your issues, and to attempt to cope. I’m still working through mine, and there’s still a long way to go, but I’m trying. I’m getting the help I need. And I’m finally (fucking finally!) realizing that I don’t need people in my life like him to make me feel bad about myself, just because he feels bad about himself. I deserve to be surrounded by supportive and loving people, ones who know the real me. It is scary though, when you’ve been hiding ‘you’ from yourself for so long – you have to dig through quite a bit of crap before you can start learning who the real you is, and learning to love it.
And Finally, Finding Acceptance:
SO with all that being said, it finally hit me – and yes, unfortunately it took 26 years, some bad breakups and quite a bit of therapy – that I don’t need anyone else to make me happy. I’m not searching for someone to “complete” me – like I’m only half of a person right now or something, just because I’m single – I’m searching for someone to compliment me. I have to love me and everything I stand for. Once I do that, I can find someone who will make me even better. And if they don’t make me better, then I don’t need them. I’m perfectly happy spending time on my own, so if a relationship doesn’t work out, I know I’ll be ok. I feel as though I’ve found the right balance of keeping my heart open, but guarded… someday I’ll find someone to compliment me, and life will be great. But I’m not going to sacrifice myself and my life for them anymore. I’m done with being treated like a victim, with putting up with things I know that I shouldn’t, with always losing myself when I start falling for someone. I used to dive in head first and somehow fall into only doing everything they enjoyed – maybe thinking they’d like me more or something? When in reality it was just my extremely low self-esteem and me not knowing who I was, what I truly liked to do, or even thinking that I was worthy of more than the way they were treating me. After a lot of introspection, I know that I’m a catch! I’m the ‘prize’ and the right guy will treat me like the prize I am. And if he doesn’t, then someone else will. I’m not in a hurry. Time and love will unfold as it may. I just have to always remember who I am and that no matter what happens, I will be ok.