Because talking about removing yourself (emotionally) from a relationship is the most fun I think I could ever have on a weekday.
First, let me mention how incredibly grateful I am to those of you who have responded to me and this blog. I didn’t have a goal when I started writing, and I certainly didn’t expect people to receive it the way they have. I would have never imagined that people would relate to me, and would also be impassioned enough to write me and share their stories. For that, I thank you. You make this word-vomit shitfest worth continuing. Keep sharing!
I’m currently working on distancing myself from relationships and the people in them that have hurt me. It’s hard, I think, because you spend so much of your time trying to convince yourself that the relationship can work while ignoring what you need out of it. Thus, when it’s over, you’re left with this hole in your heart and the feeling that you have to do the work to make up for the reciprocation you never received. Self-work, essentially. Having to tell yourself that you’re pretty, and smart, and worth it…because your partner never did. Or if they did, they certainly didn’t mean it.
I’m slowly learning to stick up for myself and be an advocate of my needs and wants, but it’s hard. I’ve lived through two father figures tearing me down in various ways, too many failed male relationships, and a marriage that was based on….what, I have no idea. So naturally, I think I’ve internalized this idea that I don’t deserve to be happy, because why should I? Something about me is clearly wrong. Counselor Elspeth refutes this and says “absolutely not, not all things are meant to be, and those people have their own issues to work out. Do some daily affirmations, etc, etc.” Depressed Elspeth counters and says “Nah, girl. You’re messed up. You’re not good enough. Look at all those other eligible women. They’re better than you. They have long hair, know how to contour, and are better at social media.” How does one argue with that?
I left my ex for many reasons, but mostly because needs weren’t being met. I did everything I could (or that I knew how to do) to fix the relationship, but in the end, it just wasn’t right. There was too much apathy and resentment on his part, and not enough desire to change that. When he started seeing this “girlfriend”, I was so hurt because he was doing everything with her that I had wanted to do with him. *Further reinforcing that idea that there is something inherently wrong with me.*
But the more I reflect on that fact, and the more I see come up in my newsfeed, the more I realize that I’m just not the type of partner he was looking for. I’m not the kind of woman who posts “live, laugh, love” every five seconds. Nor am I the type of person who wants to celebrate inconsequential milestones like a 6 month anniversary with tickets to Metallica. Metallica.
So, distancing myself from such things may be hard, but it’s getting easier. Every day I learn more about what I want and don’t want in a relationship. I’m learning to identify red flags in potential partners- something my therapists have been talking about since I was 17, but I’m only just picking up on now. And I’m working on listening to Counselor Elspeth, even though she seems like she’s full of shit. I just don’t know…
PS: I’m attempting to write more frequently, but I’ve been pretty ill since last Wednesday, and over-the-counter medication cocktails just don’t have quite the same effect on my creativity as wine does. My apologies.