Being dumped changed my life
Breaking up is hard to do...
"My biggest advice for anyone dealing with the heartbreak of an unwanted breakup is to look very carefully at the person who broke up with you and look very carefully at yourself. If you are radically honest, you will see a myriad of ways that you asked for the breakup to happen as well as the ways that you deserve something better in relation to an other"--Moongirl, 2003, Lifted Hearts Community Member
I felt a connection with this quote, because it is true. Years ago, I was the epitome of a woman scorned. I spent years with a man that not only broke my heart, but he also broke my essence. It amazed me that I entered the relationship thinking I was complete, yet once I left, I saw myself broken. For years, I allowed this to make me disillusioned, but now I see it as valuable life lesson. Being dumped was the best thing that ever happened to me. It made me realize that once you enter a relationship with your eyes closed, you leave it with your eyes wide open. This is the story about a little girl who fell madly in love, yet lost her identity.
Maybe karma caught up with me, because of the way I met Jay*. Admittedly, I was dating someone else when we first met. My boyfriend at the time was a sweet guy, but honestly, I did not feel a connection with him. So when he went out to sea for six months, I felt a bit relieved. The distance between us was supposed to give me a chance to reevaluate our relationship. Yet instead of reevaluating, I met Jay, and my life changed. When we first met, there was an instant spark. I’m not sure if it was the fact that he was the total opposite of my boyfriend, or the fact that he was the first guy in years that I felt at ease with. So secretly, we dated, and I will admit that it was wrong of me to pursue another man when I was with someone else. I felt immensely guilty, but luckily, the guy I cheated on is still friends with me to this very day!
Nevertheless, after months of secretly dating, I finally did the right thing and told my boyfriend the truth. In reality, I felt as if I was stringing him along throughout the whole relationship. Immediately Jay and I made our relationship exclusive. At the time, I thought I made the right decision and entered the relationship with my heart on my sleeve. Back then, I was a girl that was waiting for Prince Charming to come in and sweep me off my feet. Jay was my first serious and earnest relationship. He made me feel like I was a woman, not a teenage girl. It was the first time in my life I was with someone I wanted to marry.
However, we rushed the relationship immensely. We talked as if we didn’t have a care in the world, as long as we had each other. At that point, in my life, I still had a lot of growing up to do. I was still living at home. I dropped out of college, and I was still trying to figure out what to do with my life. My parents still treated me as if I was still in high school, giving me curfews, monitoring my every move. When Jay arrived, he pulled me aside and helped me realize that I needed to cut the umbilical cord, and after a trip to New York City, we came up with the hasty idea that we should live together. At the time, I was ecstatic. I wanted to show my parents that I could be independent. Presently, I will admit I made a very impetuous decision, because I didn’t weigh all of my options or make a plan B. Honestly, I moved in with Jay to spite my parents. They didn’t approve of the relationship from the beginning, and they were firm believers that people should be married before they move in together. However, I was over 18 years old, and legally they could not stop me from leaving home. The sad thing is that Jay didn’t have his own place. He was staying with friends that were renting out a room they had in their house. Yet, I thought of this as the perfect escape, and I recklessly moved in.
The first year of living together was wonderful, because we were candidly playing house. I was working part-time, while he was finishing his tenure in the navy. I finally re-enrolled back in college, and was optimistic about the direction I took in my life. I felt like an adult.
We talked innocently about our future. We made plans about getting married years down the line. We even picked a wedding date. Yet, the thing about Jay was that he would sprout out so many ideas about the future, yet never took any steps to develop them. I admired the fact that he was a dreamer, but you can’t just get anything done on dreams alone. Jay would always start on a project, but would never finish. Nevertheless, I was supportive. Back then, I was the type of woman that would stand by her man no matter what. I felt that’s what you were supposed to do in a relationship. Yet, he did not support my dreams. I felt like I was walking behind him, instead of beside him.
Yet after a year of bliss, the relationship began to sour. We’d have the typical arguments that people living together would have. It would be little things like cleaning the house, putting gas in the car, picking each other up late from work. Yet as time passed, the arguments became frequent and became more intense. For my 21st birthday, we’d planned to go to Las Vegas, and agreed to open a joint checking account. Now to this day, I regret opening the account. Not only was it the source of the majority of our arguments, but at the time, I was not mentally ready for such responsibility. I was still at a point in my life, where I was a bit nonchalant and had a lot to learn. The account did teach me to be more financially responsible, but statistically, money is one of the main causes for couples to argue.
As months passed, I saw myself changing. I was no longer the happy-go-lucky girl that went out with friends. I was supposed to be figuring what I wanted in life, but instead I was trying to figure out how to keep a man in my life. I was dependent on someone’s love.
Jay didn’t like me going out with friends. He wanted me to stay home so he could keep an eye on me. He preferred staying at home, playing on the computer, than interacting with other people. He didn’t like any of my friends. He didn’t even want to make a solid effort to get to know them. Meanwhile, I was living with one his best friends, who I couldn’t stand, yet I kept my composure and remained civil.
I saw myself walking on eggshells, and bending over backwards to make things work. More and more we became distant. He would tell his friends and our roommates things before he would tell me. I knew I was living in denial, but I allowed this enormous gap to come between us.
After months of constant arguments and financial strain, I agreed to move back home. We originally made plans to get our own place, because the situation with our roommates had become chaotic as well. Yet, we agreed to try to make the relationship work despite this obstacle. I would have to drive to the house to see him. I spent every weekend with him, yet he never made the effort to see me. I would have to make the first move. I was going out of my way to hold on to what was once a fairytale romance.
Our strained relationship finally came to a head one summer afternoon. I still remember his eyes turning an icy blue and his thunderous voice stinging me. I left his house trembling with fear, thinking that I messed things up for good. I was supposed to be heading to class that afternoon, but instead I drove a mile from the house and cried for what seemed like an eternity. I kept asking myself why I couldn’t make him happy. I didn’t speak to him for the rest of the weekend, and finally he called me that Sunday night to end things. He said he didn’t see a future with us. He said he’d been unhappy for a long time, and he couldn’t make things work anymore. At the time, I blamed myself for what happened.
Naturally, I cried for weeks. I couldn’t figure out where things went wrong. I over analyzed our relationship, blaming myself instead of accepting the fact that we weren’t compatible. I thought I was a terrible girlfriend, even though I was 100% loyal to him. I figured loving him with all of my heart would be enough. For the first time in my life, I felt like a failure.
I cried and hung onto the false hope that we could fix things, when I should have spent that time trying to figure out how to piece my life back together. I couldn’t recognize myself. My heartache consumed my daily life. At that point, in my life I figured that if I couldn’t make him happy, what made me think I can make anyone happy. This shook my faith in love to the core.
I tried to throw myself back out into the dating pool. I figured a new boyfriend would validate me, and rebuild my confidence. Yet I saw myself comparing the men I would date to Jay. I was searching for an unattainable love to fill the void in my life.
After not speaking for months, Jay and I tried to rekindle our romance. Yet our future was more elusive than ever. He would never clarify with me, or his friends or family that we were back together. He would only treat me like his girlfriend when he saw that I was trying to move on with my life. Once again, I saw myself walking on eggshells, and reverting to the little girl, he once knew. I didn’t want to badger him about our future, because I didn’t want to lose him a second time. We maintained a very physical relationship until he went overseas to fight in the Middle East. I told him I was going to wait for him, because I still thought we were meant to be together. Yet, once again, he was stringing me along. Finally, after almost six months of trying to maintain a long distance relationship, he dumped me once again. He wrote me a long letter explaining that he met someone else, and he didn’t see a future with me because I wasn’t willing to change for him. Naturally, I was devastated. I kept asking myself why I wasn’t good enough for him. Twice, this man has snatched my heart out of my chest, and belittled me.
Yet after that devastating blow, something inside of me snapped. I saw myself looking in the mirror one day, and I saw this pathetic girl staring back at me. How can I love someone, when I forgot how to take care of me? I wasted so much time worrying about another person’s happiness. I needed to acknowledge my own happiness. I had to find out who I really was. I took a step back, and had to face the fact that we weren’t meant to be. We had an unhealthy relationship. We didn’t communicate very well. We should have ended things a lot sooner, instead of trying to fix something that was meant to be broken.
In addition to that, I still had so many things in my life I needed to straighten out. For so long I’ve been coasting by blaming over people for my despondent life, yet I forgot I was talking about MY LIFE. I’m the master of my own destiny. I control my future. Being dumped made me realize that I had to regain my self-respect. I’d forgotten that life is about having highs and lows. I can’t spend the rest of my life waiting for someone to take care of me. I had to realize that I didn’t need someone to hold my hand. In order to get things done, one must do it themselves.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not praising Jay for his behavior. In fact, I think he’s a pretentious, condescending, supercilious jerk. Yet somehow, he opened my eyes to something greater in life. He taught me that love should be equal. The experience taught me to think more rationally when it comes to matters of the heart—not to rely on the idea that happily ever after exists. It’s unclear that there’s someone out there for everyone. I can’t be naïve about love, but I can’t be cynical.
The break-up once jaded me, but now I understand it made me stronger. I am no longer the sulky person that’s waiting for her heart to be broken once more. I am now an accomplished young woman that may have had her share of heartaches, but I learn to live my life one day at a time. It’s not healthy to allow love to be a huge anxiety. Love may be a complex emotion, but it is also a skill. We have to be able to love ourselves before we can even think to love someone else just as much. I can proudly say I love the person I am today, because I have evolved into a better person.
Breaking up with someone may be hard, but it may also be a push in the right direction.
(* Names were changed in article)
- Breaking Up Quotes from Tigress Luv
Some of the saddest broken heart and break up quotes on the web.
Quotes about Heartache
Every happy couple has at least one breakup behind them.
The funny thing about breakups is they point out what we didn't even know we had, but don't give us the option of going back into battle armed with that knowledge.
We don't stop loving someone we simply learn to live without them.
The pain of a broken heart is not so much as to kill you yet not so little as to let you live.
Trying to forget someone is like trying to remember someone you never knew.
If someone you love hurts you cry a river, build a bridge, and get over it.