All for One
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All for One

An all too common circumstance for women

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All for One
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I want to set a stage for you all. Imagine you are fresh out of Graduate school and you are living on your own for the first time. The dream job you always wanted, you have it. You live in a wonderful loft apartment with an ocean view. You're single, young and full of life.

Ok, now enter the stage of your life where a co-worker at your company, John, a very likable guy with everyone, starts to give you attention in a friendly way. He helps you figure out the printer, tells you some close by places to pick up lunch, only talks to you at work. It starts out as a work friendship. You don't think anything of it and you work, go home, sleep and repeat. He is the furthest thing from your mind because in the past, guys never chose you. You were the odd friend, the tag along, the third wheel. So naturally, you've accepted the fact that men are never romantically attracted to you and most of them end up as friends, you're ok with this. Then your company has an after-work party and everyone is going. You see John there by the bar, by himself, you go and sit next to him. You guys talk about your childhood, dreams and goals. Small talk to pass the time of the somewhat straining party. Then all of the sudden in one of the awkward silences he says;

"I have a girlfriend."

You laugh genuinely and tell him that you had no interest in him and that you two are work friends. That you are no threat to him and his girlfriend and that if it's an issue, you guys can just be not even talk outside of work. He agrees. So then you make your way around the party, greeting and talking to other people, finish your drink and go home.

The next couple of days at work proceed as normal. You make more female friends there and you have lunch with them. You keep up with your work, social life and finances. Everything seems perfect. Then one day you go into the copying room and John is there. It's a small, tight place and you know that he is very concerned about how he is seen with other women because of his girlfriend. You greet him and then say that you will wait outside the door until he is finished with the printer. He tells you that he's already done and that you can come in. You go in, careful to avoid touching his body as you maneuver around him to get to the printer. He continues to stand near you as he organizes his papers. Clicking the buttons with some anxiety, you avoid eye contact and focus on the papers copying.

1, 2, 3, 4..

You turn the page over and press the buttons again.

"Hey."

You look at John and he kisses you. He does more than kiss you, he is touching you and holding you close. You are taken by surprise and at first, you give in but then you realize what is happening and you push him away.

"John, you have a girlfriend please don't-" He sighs heavily and tilts your head towards his and says;

"Don't worry about that, I have fallen for you and I can't stop thinking about you. You are the most beautiful girl here and, I want to be with you."

He kisses you again gently and leaves the copy room. You are left shaken.

Did that just happen? Does he mean it when he says that he wants me? No one ever wants me. No, he has a girlfriend. Nothing he said was true. That was my first kiss, and he seemed genuine. Why would a man lie to me about something like that?

Soon after, you and John start seeing each other. At first it was cute dates to unique restaurants far away from the city, movie nights at your place, cooking at your place, hanging at your place. Then he tells you that he loves you and wants to have sex with you. You're a virgin and your mother has always expressed to you how important it is to wait until marriage. But John tells you that he would never sleep with you unless you he really loved you. He takes your virginity.

Your girlfriends at work ask if you're seeing John and you say no. John has told you:

"If anyone asks about us, you have to say no. I haven't broken up with my girlfriend yet and I need time to tell her. She can't find out from a complete stranger. We have to keep our relationship a secret."

You believe him because you have developed feelings for him. So you follow with no questions asked.

This goes on for a year. You are devoted to him, you support him, you love him. He started working overtime and couldn't always do the drive to your place so he would ask you to meet him at hotel restaurants and each and every time, you two would get a room and make love. Then he would say he had to leave first so that no one knew he was there with you. You agree to this because you want to protect your relationship. You also can't text him or call him because he doesn't want his girlfriend to see the messages. You can only make plans at work through your work email. You stop spending so much time with your friend group because they will only ask questions about John because they wanted to ruin it for you. Then a rumor goes around at work that John sexually assaulted one of your friends and you don't believe her. John says that she came onto him and he tried to get away. You believe John and curse your friend.

John tells you that he is going to leave the company because of how the rumor went around and he didn't feel comfortable working there anymore. You support him and say that he never deserved that rumor and you'll follow him.

"Babe, it would be suspicious if you followed me and I can't have you be accused like that. I'll go, you stay and we will be stronger that way."

You do as he says and stay at your job. Three months later, John has never returned any of your calls or texts. You get nervous that you have angered him in some way and so you start to apologize to him for everything and for all you are because you only care for him.

Then you open up your Facebook and see a post that multiple friends of yours have liked and it's a post about John. John said that you couldn't friend him on Facebook because he didn't use it very much. The post is dated from three months ago.

The post reads; "John and Lisa got engaged."

The world around you starts to crumble and you cry day in and day out. You call out of work, you try reaching out to John and he just leaves you on read. You want to know what is going on, what did you do, is this just a way to keep Lisa off you and John's track, your love is strong he would never leave you.

Six months later, you are left feeling as if you are not good enough and that no man is truthful when they say that they love you. You feel used and emotionally abused. How could this have happened? You were smart, you had a degree, a corporate job and you lived on your own. Supported yourself. What did you do wrong?

The answer is, you did nothing wrong. There will never be a logical explanation as to why a man chose to use you and damage you emotionally. You can not get stuck and blame yourself. You are not the only one this could have happened to. If anything, this the time when women need to support each other most, when one is isolated from her friends and thinks she can not trust another female. In this time of age, it is taught to girls from a young age that they can only trust males. They only need to abide by the opinion of a male. Females nowadays are absolutely nasty to each other and territorial. Women can easily be blind sided by a man and think that he is only relationship that matters and that you need no one else. This is simply not true. No man should have so much power over you that you can not even trust your friends, sisters or mother.

My heart bleeds for the women who now hate themselves because a man used them and now they feel worthless. You are not worthless. A man caught you in vulnerability and that is all it is. Don't be afraid to tell your friends what happened, do not feel ashamed. You are not alone and the pain will not last forever. There will come a man who will love you wholeheartedly and have a great relationship with you and respect your mother and friends. Healing takes time and you will be ok.

Dedicated to all the College women who have interned at companies and preyed on by men who used them and damaged them emotionally. It is not your fault.

Dedicated to all the girls who are told men have more say in who you should be and are told to not trust a female.

Dedicated to all the women who feel that they will now never find love, you're going to be ok and someone will love you.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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