So this is a very personal post today, inspired by a post I read on Danners World (read her post here) Danielles post was about how she always felt like she had to have a boyfriend in her teens, and how eventually learning to be on her own taught her so much no matter how scary it was.
This really struck a cord with me as I’ve been through this, and have learnt a lot from it, and has inspired me to write my own post.
From the age of 16 I was pretty much always in a relationship, I was with my first boyfriend for two years and my last boyfriend for four. so up until the age of about 23 I was always with someone. I think it was my last relationship that had the biggest impact on my life in terms of restricting myself and revolving my life around someone else, which is what Danielle talks about in her blog.
Looking back now this wasn’t a particularly healthy relationship, it turned me into a person I didn’t like. I was anxious, jealous, insecure and sometimes could be very mean to people who didn’t deserve it, just because this person had put the idea in my head that they were out to break us up or something. Mind you this wasn’t helped by my then boyfriend encouraging this, flirting with other girls and basically cheating on me at every opportunity. (note by cheating I mean sending filthy, inappropriate messages to a large number of other girls, not actually physically cheating). The more this went on, the more insecure I became, the more confidence I lost in myself and my future and the more I relied on him to provide that for me.
Looking back I should have cut it off after the first incident, but things get complicated when you love somebody and you have a whole bunch of other stuff going on. You come to rely on that person because you love them, even if they’re the one that’s hurting you the most.
One big thing in the relationship after we’d finished university, he insisted that I should be in London because “If you don’t make it in London you’ve failed at life ” after a particularly crappy time at uni, I had no idea what to do, so I blindly followed it. That really got under my skin, and even now sometimes I have a brief moment of self doubt. Obviously London is a very tough place to make it in, so we lived with his grandparents (who were such lovely people and so amazingly good to us, I’ll always be very grateful for that) I worked unpaid at an internship to gain experience and applied for countless jobs getting nowhere. Looking back that was an extremely low point in my life, I had zero confidence, was anxious all the time, I found out that my boyfriend had cheated twice again and also done something else which was pretty disturbing. I was alone in London away from all my family and all my friends and I felt like I was failing at everything. Yet I felt I had to stay there because I’d be letting him down if I left, even though I would have been happier. I was constantly being told to make my own decisions then having an argument if those decisions weren’t the ones he wanted me to make.
I eventually moved back home and the relationship struggled on for another few months, until I eventually broke it off. Yes, I broke it off. I had feelings for somebody else, nothing ever came of it but I’m glad I did, it gave me a massive kick up the arse and made me realise I was fighting for a relationship that had been dead for a long time, and fighting for a person who couldn’t give a toss about me. I think a lot of it was also stubbornness too, I didn’t want to give people the satisfaction of seeing us fail. Which in hindsight was a very stupid thing to do.
It was hard I’ll not lie, but the surprising thing is not as hard as I thought it would be, and ironically it seemed to be a lot harder for him (the same guy who told me that I’d never get over it if we split up) with him texting me well up until this Christmas about how something was missing from his life and some equally strange things (I’m just going to say it now, yes this is the guy from the post about what to do if you know someone is cheating behind their partners back read it here and let me know if you would like a post with an update)
But yeah, being single for a year was the best thing I could have ever done, I got a new job (my current job) as a Social Care Support Worker, and I love it. It’s honestly the best job in the world, and I feel so loved and appreciated in it. (I have one particular service user who lights up whenever I’m on shift because he knows I’m just as silly as him, and I’ll joke around with him all night 🙂 ). I went on dates with a couple of people, which helped build my confidence back up. I went on crazy nights out with my amazing friends (They were the most amazing support network, I am so lucky to have them) I got to spend more time with my 2 young cousins who I adore and my family. I felt a lot more confident in my decisions and I was happy in my life.
Then I met Dan, and we had a few dates and meet ups before we eventually decided to give it a go, and at this point I was ready to get back into a relationship, I’d learnt to love myself and that made the world of difference to everything else in my life. Sometimes it does surprise me how different this relationship is, not once have I ever felt insecure, paranoid, like I’m not good enough or any of that other rubbish. The biggest difference is that we’re equals, we make decisions together and we listen to each other, I don’t feel that constant pressure not to let him down. Its just so relaxing and easy.
Sometimes I do have little wobbles and think well I should have made it in London, I’m not successful enough. But then what, be unhappy in London? Because you know what I’m so happy in my job, with my boyfriend, and my personal life. And so what if I’m “only in Yorkshire” I’m happy, even when I have little blips in life and things go wrong I know it’s not forever. I think that makes me more successful then living in London ever could.
I guess what I’m trying to say is don’t ever let anybody else run your life or push you into decisions you don’t want and that makes you unhappy. That person may only be around for a little while, but it’s your life and you only get one!
So this was a very personal post to write and I had to take a couple of breathers, I’m not used to exposing so much of my personal life, but I thought it would be worth sharing, and I hope you guys enjoyed it and I’ve not made too much of a fool of myself! Let me know!