I have been in several relationships over the last few years and I am fortunate enough to have found a very loving and compassionate boyfriend currently but during the last week, I have been reminded that not everyone is so lucky and I was not always so lucky. My best friend just decided to end a highly toxic relationship that she had been in for the last 2 and a half years. Despite the two of them having many difficulties and moments of complete unhappiness, they kept up the relationship for their own reasons, so the break-up was difficult to swallow. My friend thought she might have made a mistake in dating her significant other for as long as she did and also questioned her decision to end the relationship in the way she did, however after talking to me about several of my break-ups she lost all her doubt.
The conversation started with my first relationship which ended after 2 long years and after about 7 months of extreme trials and in some instances slight abuse. As is natural with first relationships, I was scared to let go of the person I had fallen in love with and struggled with the decision to end it. However, it was the best decision I could have made for myself because I broke up with him I decided to take any chances that came to me. I had felt like I missed so many opportunities to date better people so I gave myself a rule that is simply "If someone has the guts to ask me out and I am not in a relationship, I will say yes because what's the worst that can happen?"
Nothing could have been worse than sticking with the first boyfriend. So following that rule I dated 3 other boys, who were all very different from each other and great for teaching me a lesson. One of the boys was very sweet and in a similar boat to myself, getting out a relationship only 3 months prior to dating me, which lead to out initial problems. He was not over his ex and neither was I fully so our inevitable break up happened only about a month and a half after the start. The next boy I dated was a great friend who I had a lot in common with but never noticed a romantic connection to, but when he asked me out I said yes and it took a while for us to even go out on a date but we spend tons of time together.
Eventually, I came to realize the reason I was not initially interested in him as anything more then a friend was because there was no immediate spark of attraction. I am not one to usually focus on looks however having any kind of quality that makes me want to be around you for prolonged periods of time can include your appearance, it is not the most important thing however it does play a role in a girls mind on some level. Boyfriend number 3 in that short list was another month long relationship that taught me older is usually better. As far as those first 4 relationships go, I struggle to call any of them a mistake because I learned something from the experience but if I had to choose number 4 would definitely be the mistake.
That relationship was a mess, all of my friends and family thought the guy was a horrible nightmare who didn't treat me right and was an overall loser. The real reason I dated him was because I wanted something fun and kinda dumb and something that I knew would never last longer than a few months at most, however, I made a mistake in the fact that I got caught up in the idea that he was a better guy than he was. After that, I found another guy who was much much better.
That relationship hurt a bit more when it ended because everything was going so well then it ended out of nowhere. I was left feeling confused and empty and unwanted because I really thought that this guy was something more than another month long relationship. He and I had so much in common and we just connected so well so I really had no clue what happened to make it end, so I doubted that I could even find another guy that would be interested in me.
Then I had the best luck in the world. My boyfriend and I found each other. The story of how we met is ridiculous and cute but that isn't the important part of this story. Being in this new relationship for a while is the easiest relationship I have been in because I know what I want and I know how to react to situations and how to communicate with him.
So when my best friend broke down, not knowing whether she made the right choice, I told her about all those. She is a different person than I am, but if I could make it through my relationships and move on past my first relationship then so could she even if she felt helpless. Even if she felt completely trapped and broken and like no one would ever love her again, she could move on and not have to be alone and unhappy forever.