An Open Letter To My (Soon To Be) Divorced Best Friend

An Open Letter To My (Soon To Be) Divorced Best Friend

Here's to your bright future.
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Jessie,

I know that you’re going through something incredibly difficult right now. I won’t pretend to understand the gravity of your loss. I would never diminish your pain by telling you over and over that it isn’t a big deal or that it’ll be just fine. This is a big deal. You spent years investing in a future with a partner that you chose and that you loved deeply. You gave pieces of yourself to someone that no one else on this earth has ever or probably will ever know. You can’t have those back now. He took your secrets and your love and he left. I’m sorry. If I could take it away, I would (obviously), but all the sympathy in the world will not change his decision.

There are somethings I want you to try and remember, though, as you move forward from this. First of all, there is a major difference between being lonely and being alone. You are going to feel both, possibly at the same time. Do not allow yourself to fall into this feeling so much that you forget how truly together you are. You are not alone. You are not single. You are not lost in a world that makes absolutely no sense. At the end of every single day, you are surrounded by an army of people who believe in you and who have faith in your strength and perseverance. Remember that.

Your daughter is going to be keeping a close eye on you - like she always has. Keep it in mind that she is learning from you. Let her see what a strong and capable woman looks like. Give her something to be proud of. Let her see how well and easily you can stand on your own two feet and move forward with your life and hers. And on days when you can’t be strong. When the grief and pain are too much to bear, let her see what it looks like to be human. Let her know that there is no such thing as perfection and that it is more than ok to grieve.

When the irrational fear of being alone sets in, don’t let it. Remind yourself of a few key things. Everyone loves you. Everyone. You are easily one of the most beautiful people on this earth, inside, and especially out. And you have an amazing ass. Super smackable.

One of the most important things you can remind yourself of is that a woman of God kneels for no man. If he is truly leaving you for good, let him. You are stronger without a man who can’t make up his mind and you are more than enough without him. If he wants to come back and you want to let him, that is okay, but don’t beg him to stay or come home. When you find yourself falling to your knees, take the opportunity to pray for peace and strength.

The thing that you must always try to remember, is that every single thing in life is an opportunity to learn and grow. Take it. Learn whatever you can from this and find your own self.

I love you and will always stand by you.

Cover Image Credit: Rebbeccha Felice

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15 Things You Realize As Your Baby Brother Grows Up

No matter how old he gets, he will always be your baby brother.
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Despite the fistfights and days of locking each other out of the house, a little brother is one of the biggest blessings you can receive. Most sisters can agree that they probably bossed their brothers around a lot when they were younger (and probably still do). Most sisters have also most likely forced their brothers to participate in many games that were only enjoyable for one party (baby dolls, house, dress up, etc.)

As a little brother grows up, you start to realize a lot of things as they become your lifelong best friend. Here are 15 of them:

1. He will outgrow you

Even though you were once able to beat him in a wrestling match, and have a fair game of tag, as you get older, he begins to pass you up in size and you realize it probably isn't in your best interest to pick a fight.

2. Teenage boy sass is a real thing

So many times, girls get a bad rep for the teenage phase, but let me tell you, teenage boys have just as much sass if not more than the average hormonal girl. But you also realize that you will get through it, and he is still your sweet brother somewhere deep, deep down.

3. He will go through a phase when he is too cool for you

Your whole life you have been used to your little brother looking up to you and wanting to be just like you and do all the things you do. This probably really annoyed you at some point too and I know I found the words "stop copying me" coming out of my mouth a lot. Don't wish it away, enjoy these times because there hits a point where he will want to do their own thing for a while.

4. He will begin to form his own opinions, and he is actually really smart

He still looks up to you, but there comes a time when he actually starts to contradict and challenge your opinions, and his arguments are surprisingly really good. You learn a lot from your little brother, so start listening to what they have to say sometimes.

5. No girl will ever be good enough for him

When he brings a girl home, you can't help but judge everything about her (no pressure) because to you, no girl will match up to his awesomeness. You know you are annoying, over-controlling, and overly judgmental, but you can't help it, he is your baby brother after all.

6. Regardless of how old or big he gets, if anyone messes with him, you will "beat them up"

I am not a fighter, but somehow anytime someone messes with my little brother, I get the ego of Muhammed Ali and believe that I can beat anyone up. Even now that he has outgrown me by about six inches and 50 pounds and is definitely a lot stronger than me, I still threaten to protect him because for some reason I feel like I can defend him better than he can himself. If anyone shoves him on the soccer field or says something mean to him at school, all of the sudden the big sister is the most intimidating and feisty little 5'4" girl there is out there.

7. He has your back

The once quiet and shy boy you outspoke as a child is not afraid to stand up for you. Even if he knows you're wrong, he is just as protective of you as you are of him and he will always be there for you whether you need a shoulder to cry on, you've had a fight with your friends and need someone to talk to, or a guy blows you off and you just need dairy queen and a movie night.

8. People will think he is your boyfriend and vice versa

As little kids, you were obviously the big sister, but now that he has outgrown you, hit puberty and matured, people mistake him as your boyfriend all the time. When you go to dinner and get the "you are such a cute couple" comment, you can't help but laugh.

9. All of his academic success is obviously all thanks to you

All the days you forced him to play "school" with you and tried to teach him everything you knew paid off because he actually knows what he is doing now. You're welcome.

10. Every year he turns another year older, you freak out because you remember how old you felt when you were his age, and it is not possible for him to be that old

No, no, no. He is little. He cannot drive just because he is 16. That is scary. [Only you were mature enough and ready to drive at 16.] There is no way that he is already 18 and can vote. You will never get used to the fact that he is growing up at the same pace as you are.

11. He is the one person who defies your theory that you are never wrong

He always has your best interests in mind, so if he disapproves of a guy, or questions a choice you are making, he is most likely right, just listen to him. Seriously, it will save you time in the future.

12. You will always worry about him

Yes, you are annoying and you know he can handle himself, but the thought of him ever getting hurt kills you. Every time he goes out or takes a risk, you worry about him. However, you also know and trust that he is smart and makes good choices, and if he ever doesn't, you will always be here to save the day, duh!

13. You are his biggest fan

And you are absolutely obnoxious at sporting games and other events. You are the first person to yell at the referee when he gets fouled and the loudest person screaming when he scores a goal. You also find yourself bragging about him to your friends because you are just so proud, and you taught him everything he knows (duh again).

14. He is your best friend

You can tell him anything and he can tell you anything. You guys have a pact and he won't tell your secrets. He's your person, and you have come to find out that he actually gives great advice when you give him the chance to talk.

15. No matter how old he gets, he will always be your baby brother

No matter how old my brother gets, we still say "I love you" every night and he will always be my little baby brother who I watch over and protect, always. I know I have a lifelong best friend who I can lean on during hard times, and celebrate with when the times are good. Bless up.

Special shoutout to my baby brother, Luke, for teaching me so much about myself and always being there for me.

Cover Image Credit: Author's photo

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When You Give A Boy An Older Brother, You Change Just About Everything

The dynamic relationship changes more than you could know.

bmscott
bmscott
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Being a younger sibling, I fit the typical stereotype: annoying, constantly following my brother around, wanting to do everything with him and constantly instigating fights. That's the job of little brothers though, right? Anyway, my brother and I are six years apart. When I was growing up, we never got along. At one point I swear we may have hated each other. Although, as times changed, we grew closer and closer.

With my brother and I being six years apart, we never were able to have the same friend groups...or so he thought. Whenever his friends would come over, I would instantly throw myself into whatever they were doing. I would like to think that most of his friends enjoyed my presence because I keep in touch with some of them today, but ultimately my brother hated that my 6-year-old self couldn't find my own friends to hang out with.

The fights that brothers have are a step up from screaming matches that sisters may have. Once I was old enough to actually agitate and argue with my brother, the infamous brother beatings came into play. I remember running away from him around the house during summer break while my parents were at work. He would catch me, give me a few swift hits or trap me with a pillow and tell me not to do whatever I did ever again. When I was younger, he scared me to no end, but now that I've grown up they're just more memories to laugh at.

Having an older brother also teaches you some skills. Like what to do and what not to do, and how to get away with things that I shouldn't be doing. Since my brother was six years older than me, I was able to watch him go through high school while I was in elementary school. This taught me the in and outs of high school before I was even in middle school. Watching him taught me ways to hide things from my parents without getting in trouble (sorry Mom and Dad). Whether he realizes it or not, I watched his every move growing up, and I have learned endless amounts from my brother.

The one downside (sometimes upside) of having a brother is the, "Oh, you're Kyle's little brother" statement. When you grow up in a town as small as mine, you can count on everyone to know who your older siblings are. They expect you to either be exactly like them or be the opposite of them.

At the end of the day, I feel extremely blessed to have my older brother. I may have prayed a few times to be an only child when I was little, but I now know that an older brother is a blessing. He's your best friend and protector no matter how old you get. My brother is always there (after about four phone calls sent to voicemail), and he's always ready to jump in on a fight if he needs to. I've learned to love all of his flaws, like how he can talk your ear off for four days straight or how he takes things without asking. I've learned to never take our unique and dynamic relationship for granted because he truly is my best friend till I die. Like my dad always told us, "Cherish your brother. When your parents are gone, you two are all you'll have left."

So, Kyle, this one's for you.

P.S. Stop wearing my clothes.

bmscott
bmscott

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