To All The Boys Who've Hurt Me Before, Thank You

To All The Boys Who've Hurt Me Before, Thank You

I am proud of who I see in the mirror and it's all because of them.

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The pain that stems from the hurt you feel from past experiences can cause you to change the way you trust a love interest. I can attest to that. I fell very hard for someone who I expected certain things out of which I was never going to get. Ending that was one of the hardest things I've ever had to go through, and for a while, I couldn't think about anything but him. Nothing seemed like it would ever get better and I didn't expect to ever get over him.

That being said, here I am today, shy of a year later, completely changed for the better.

Devastating pain from that past relationship forced me to come to terms with myself and who I wanted to be with in the future. I took months off from the dating scene and didn't talk to a single guy. No dating apps, no responding to a DM on Instagram, just me coming to terms with the person I no longer recognized in the mirror.

I've been broken up with over text, just to see that person date someone new the next week. I was broken up with because of "distance" which I perceived as someone no longer willing to try to make a relationship work. I just accepted it and moved on, but never stopped to check in on myself.

To fall in love with myself was the key to meeting who I really need to be with, not who I want to be with.

That last bout of hurt was the last straw. There was no way to meet someone new until I truly rejected the boy and all the others who have hurt me, and then let all of that hurt out. Harboring those feelings of sadness and anger were causing added pain that I do not need in my life. Now I will admit some of that pain still lingers, but it's such a small trace left and I do not let it affect me anymore.

I came out of the hurt and met someone who changed me for the better.

He may be gone from my life now, but the two months we had taught me more about maturity, respect, and self-love than anyone else I'd ever been with. God, as one of my best friends put it so perfectly, sent me him to learn how to truly heal from that past relationship that rocked me to the core. It's weird to think about it now, that I needed that hurt to meet my recent ex, and really grow as a person from every experience I've gone through.

I'm here looking for the real thing, with no more mind games or commitment phobia.

This time I'm here for someone who wants to be here for me. I've gone through my pain, and I can sincerely thank every boy who has hurt me since they have brought me to a point where I can finally put myself first and recognize who I see in the mirror. So thank those who have hurt you, because without them you wouldn't be the person you are right now.

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To My Boyfriend's Mom

He loves you more than you could ever imagine...
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Without you, there would not be a him, so first things first, thank you.

1. Thank you for teaching him to love a woman the right way, to put God first, and YOU before me always, the respect he shows you is so attractive, and you deserve it.

He talks about you like you hung the moon, I don't doubt for a second that he will be an amazing father one day, I owe all of that to you.

2. Thank you for giving me a chance, learning to love me when you knew your son was doing the same.

I can't speak for my own first impressions, but hopefully mine was not THAT bad...when we both slapped him on the arms for his rude remark at the same time, I knew our relationship was already blossoming.

SEE ALSO: Finding A Husband In College

3. Thank you for every meal you have ever purchased me.

And chocolate, and candy...you know just as well as your son does that food is the way to my heart. Especially Taco Bell and cheesecake ;)

4. Thank you for your advice, suggestions, and opinions...and asking for mine

Whether it's telling me to slap him for being a smart a$$, or you're asking me about color swabs for your kitchen makeover, you come to me as if I am your own, and I am so honored to give you my own input.

5. Thank you for including me

You never fail to leave a spot for me, and I love family dinners/outings with you guys just as much as I love my own!

6. Thank you for teaching your son to never give up, and that if he does it is only to better himself, or it's the only choice he has left.

He is so focused on his future, he wants the best for himself, and he is constantly reminding me that these are things that YOU taught him, you deserve to be so proud.

7. Thank you for letting him love my family, and allowing me to love yours.

He is so loyal and loving to my family, and I don't even have to ask myself why because I see him with you and yours. Thank you for letting us double up on holidays when we can, and making sure we get the most out of our time with you!

8. Thank you for being his best friend.

I think of him as mine too, but I couldn't think of a better person to also hold that title, you know him better than anyone else and you always will.

9. Thank you for teaching him how to treat a woman

He is constantly telling me "You sound like my mother." Thankfully earlier in our relationship, he told me that the woman he wants to be with, should do just that. He always tells people who try, "No, no one calls me by my full name except my mom and my girlfriend."

10. Thank you for your honesty

We all know that he and I can drive you crazy sometimes, thank you for telling us like it is, and making sure we know you still love us anyways.

SEE ALSO: 8 Tiny Lies Every Young Woman Has Told Their Best Friend

11. Thank you for teaching him to work as hard as possible in anything and everything he does.

I have never met anyone with such a desire for success, he and I are constantly discussing how we can better our futures, and I know exactly where his drive comes from.

12. Thank you for teaching him to clean up after himself

Even though sometimes, it takes him a minute to do so.

13. Thank you for teaching him how to love, and letting him love me.

I have never felt so loved by a man, probably because anyone else who came into my life was just a boy. Thank you for your unconditional love for him, he is your entire heart and that is so easy to see, I am happy to share his with you.

You and I both know that even years from now we will both occasionally probably be closing the fridge that he left open, cleaning the crumbs he dropped, demanding he take a shower after playing soccer, or reminding him 20 times about plans we made weeks ago, we both share such a great love for such an amazing man. I could never be more thankful that you brought forth into this world such a comforting, supportive, protective, steadfast, driven, handsome, and hilarious guy. Thank you for everything you do for him, for me, and for us, I love you a lot!

Cover Image Credit: casey

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To My First Heartbreak

What you did was wrong but it has taken me four years to really understand what you did. I picked myself up and I haven't been this happy in a really long time.

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I was an innocent sophomore in high school who was still dealing with the loss of my dad. It was February of 2014, I fell head over heels for the boy who had finally noticed me. I spent a good portion of my middle school years trying to get myself noticed by him and somehow, many years later he did in our history class.

When he finally asked me to be his girlfriend, I was over the moon. I finally got the boy that I thought was perfect (insert Taylor Swift songs here).


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News flash: he wasn't. I was young and naive, I thought I was happy until I really knew what I was getting myself into.

We were together for a year, but the last six months of the relationship was spent arguing over the stupidest things. He would tell me that I "needed to change" but I still was trying to figure myself out. It wasn't easy learning how to live without my dad. I had to build a new self and I was being constantly told that I wasn't enough, that no one would want me, and for awhile I believed him. I believed the terrible words he was telling me. I would cry myself to sleep as I would rethink the words he would yell at me over the phone. I really felt like I was in my own "White Horse" music video and I really was waiting for my Prince Charming to fix me and see me as the real me. I found him two years later and I haven't been happier.

You, my terrible first heartbreak, might have broken me and I might have had to build myself back up. But I was able to go through my grief without you telling me "that I just needed to get over it" and I was able to find someone who is so good for me. He has made me happier than you ever did. He gets me- he knows when I need my nuggets, he knows that my love for my horses comes first, and he will never make me choose between the two. You tried to isolate me and for awhile it worked. I felt alone and I felt like I had no one because for awhile, you only wanted me to have you.

They say you get three loves in your lifetime. You were one and two. Not everyone gets that terrible mix, but you were, and you destroyed me.


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My third (and final) love came into my life in a pizza shop. I knew him my whole life, he lived next to my best friend but we ended up working together. It was unexpected and it was good. He is perfect for me, he has built up the fragments you left behind. You left a broken girl, who was sick and tired of fighting, crying and thinking that she was nothing. He saw a girl who was funny and filled with hope and really terrible jokes but he saw the real her. The her that you couldn't seem to see.

My third love is one of few things I have done right in this almost 21 years of existence. He has showed me what it's like to be treated right. He has given me the world and then some, it is way more than you could ever provide for me.

My happily ever after, came after you and I am so thankful that it did. I'm thankful that I finally stood up for myself and left you even though I was terrified. I was terrified of the fact that you might be right, that no one would want me. It turns out you were so so wrong. I'm glad I got to prove you wrong because I really did believe you. It's not just about proving you wrong, but proving to myself that I am worth it. I am worth so much in life and you thought you could tear me down but I was able to rebuild. I was able to somewhat be my old self again and I was still trying to find it for the longest time. I would runaway from affection from other guys until I met my third love.

My third love, he is mine and I am his. You played me and manipulated me to the point I thought something was actually wrong with me. In reality, nothing was wrong with me, it was all your fault. Even though we both said things to one another that hurt, what you did was so wrong. You may have brought me down, but I rebuilt this empire that is the amazing person that stands here. She learned from her past mistakes, she overcame the words you used to hurt her and she walked away. Of course, she was bruised and scarred but she came out tougher and stronger. You created this boss ass bitch who wouldn't take crap from anyone and she did just that.

So even though you did all of these terrible things, I forgive you. I forgive you because I need to do that so I can move on and so that I can set an example for my future daughter who may come home with a boy like you. Perfect and charming but deep down, he would be a snake waiting for her to be vulnerable like I was, waiting for her to be an easy prey. Manipulative to the point where she might believe the lies that he's putting in her head.

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