Over the years, I have had a number of boyfriends. Each one vastly different from the last, and each one teaching me something along the way. It is only now, that I am with my current boyfriend, that I’m starting to learn how to be myself.
With my ex’s, let’s call them S and J, I always felt like I needed to live up to them and what they thought was the best course of action for me. S thought I should play sports so I did. I was actually a decent player and enjoyed it a lot but I am certainly not a jock like he was. He also thought I should go to church, so I did. It turned out I loved the people there more than I loved their reason for being there. J thought I should be more digitally involved as that was the future. Bonus, he was also quite a bit older than me so he also wanted me to be mature while he babied me and bought me things. Overall both of those relationships were trainwrecks because I let myself get burried under their expectations of me. Both relationships ended amicably with both men saying they really cared about me, I just wasn’t what they were looking for.
That statement used to really hurt me. How could I not be what they’re looking for? I was everything they had wanted me to be! I did everything I could possibly do to mold into their expectations and still I wasn’t good enough. Why wasn’t I go enough? Because I wasn’t a real person, I was a mirror. I wanted them to be able to look at me and see all the things they loved about themselves in me and I thought that would make them want to keep me. Don’t get me wrong, both of these guys were kind and nice, they weren’t at fault for my feeling like I needed to change. I was.
So fast forward to today: I am dating this amazing guy who I’ve known for nearly 4 years. He is also nice and kind, he’s also sweet and smart and makes me smile all the time. When I’m with him, I never feel like I need to be anything else. I can be childish and silly, I can be frustrated and cranky, i can be open with how I’m feeling and I’m never worried he’s going to leave me because he knows I’m human. That sometimes I’ll have a bad day, that sometimes I’ll have a cleaning frenzy day and want to clean the house top to bottom, that sometimes I’ll be unmotivated to work on school work or go to work, he understands that I’m not him, I’m me. And he loves me as I am.
Looking back, I’m kind of embarassed that I felt so insecure I was willing to let other people run my life and make my decisions. I am really glad I got to where I am now, with who I am now.