Why “Relationship Jumping” Isn’t Healthy

Why “Relationship Jumping” Isn’t Healthy

Immediately jumping from relationship to relationship causes you to skip over some important lessons.
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I had a friend in high school who jumped from relationship to relationship, meaning that as soon as one relationship ended, she couldn’t wait to start another one with someone else. Although immediately beginning a new relationship with a new guy may have helped ease, and possibly diminish, her pain from her previous relationship(s), over time I realized how more and more insecure she became. I think this is because she never really took the time after her breakups to process what happened. 

Every relationship and every breakup is different, so it’s hard to speak on behalf of everyone. But after my first breakup from a serious boyfriend, I dealt with it in three stages: processing the relationship/breakup, loving myself single, and assessing the ended relationship in order to start a new one. 

First, I emotionally came to grips with the breakup. There were days where I sat in my bedroom smearing my white pillowcase with mascara as I cried for hours. But those days were also the days I became closer and closer to figuring out why the relationship wasn’t healthy, why it ended the way it did, and what I wanted to do from there. There were also days when I would spend hours at the gym, trying every exercise and workout routine I could to release the anger I had for him and our breakup. And again, those days were also the days I became less and less angry, sad, and confused about everything, because I was actually dealing with my emotions. Based on my personal experience, it dawned on me that by immediately jumping into another relationship, my friend never dealt with the emotions caused by her previous relationship and breakup. 

After I emotionally dealt with the breakup, I began to feel confident about myself without a boyfriend. I’m only a teenager; I have the rest of my life to be with someone ... so why not enjoy the time I have single? I found that loving my single status instilled closer and stronger friendships with my girl and guy friends, because I had a lot more time to spend with them. As I spent more and more time with them, I realized how important strong friendships are. Strong friendships not only create laughter and everlasting memories, they also create stability and a sense of security in life. It was so easy to feel comfortable with myself without a boyfriend because I had such great friends who I knew had my back. I feel that this post-breakup stage is crucial, because if you can’t find stability within yourself, how do you expect to find stability in a relationship shared with someone else?

After feeling confident with myself and taking time for myself and my friends, I finally felt ready to think about a future relationship. The more time I took off from a relationship, the more time I had to understand what qualities I wanted out of someone and what kind of relationship I wanted. I believe that understanding these things is what creates better, healthier relationships in the future. A friend of mine said after her breakup, “He was my biggest mistake but my biggest lesson.” The only reason she learned anything was because she took the time to discover the mistakes that were made. 

If you don’t take any time to deal with and process your past relationships and breakups, how can you create better relationships? Think about it. 

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Stop Saying 'Love Is Love' And Then Shame Me For Dating A Republican

"How can you date a Republican?!" Quite easily, actually.

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"And love is love is love is love is love is love is love is love is love." Other theater geeks like me probably also remember this quote from Lin-Manuel Miranda's Tony acceptance speech in 2016. Now, thanks to Lin-Manuel and his talent for catchy phrases, every time someone says "love is love," all I can think of is Lin-Manuel's emphatic cry for equality.

This cry is one that I support wholeheartedly. I think that you should be allowed to love whomever you choose and that you should do so without fear of hatred or scrutiny. If you are a guy who loves guys, great. If you are a girl who loves girls, great. If you are a girl who loves guys and girls, great. You are born a certain way with certain sexual preferences, and there is nothing wrong with that.

However, if you believe that people should be free to love anyone they choose, then, honey, you better start looking past gender.

Let me tell you a little story.

Recently, I had a conversation with one of my closest friends about my boyfriend of almost 11 months. Somehow (and I'm shocked that this hadn't come up before), my boyfriend's political preferences became the topic of conversation.

The conversation went something like this:

"Wait, so is Tom a Democrat or Republican?"

"He's a Republican."

"WHAT?! Are you serious?"

"Yep."

"How can you date a Republican?"

After that, I basically went on a five-minute rant about how at the end of the day, his political preferences only make up a small fraction of who he is as a person and that I am not so shallow that I would be deterred by something this trivial.

At our cores, Tom and I value the exact same things: compassion, knowledge, kindness, dedication, honesty, respect, and above all else, love. Tom loves me unconditionally and I give him that same love in return; honestly, what else could I ask for?

Tom and I do get in some political arguments from time to time, but we also agree on those issues that are most important to me: female reproductive rights, marriage equality, and support for survivors of sexual assault. All of those things are non-negotiables for me, and Tom understands that and possesses his own list of non-negotiables.

Before you ask, yep, he voted for Trump. Did that take me back at first? Yes. Did I struggle to understand what would compel a person to vote for him? Absolutely. Did that thought kind of terrify me at first? Hell yes.

But you know what? After I just sat and listened to Tom's reasoning as to why he voted for him and watched him delve deep into Trump's policies, I could understand why some would vote for him. And to tell the truth, once I fell in love with Tom, none of that mattered anymore. And what is sad is that people so often fall so deep into their own echo chambers nowadays, that they wouldn't even give someone with different beliefs their ear. Well, I'm damn glad I did because Tom is the most amazing person I've ever met and I fall more in love with him every day.

So to tie this all together with a pretty little bow, if you're going to go around and preach that love is love and that everyone should be free to love whom they choose, then that shouldn't change for me. Maybe you're a Democrat that would never date a Republican or maybe you're a Republican who would never date a Democrat; that's your choice. But we don't get to choose who we fall in love with (much to the dismay of my liberal family and friends). Just keep an open mind and who knows? Maybe you could find some absolutely epic happiness.

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My Rating On Ghosting? BOO.

Just recently I found out what it was like to be ghosted, and it literally is almost worse than going through a tough breakup.

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Ghosting is literally one of the worst things I've experienced. I give it a 0/10 on my list of things I'd love to try again.

It makes you feel like everything said, any interest someone had in you, was all a complete sham. If you've got anxiety, it can keep your mind running around in circles thinking about what it is you did wrong and what you could have changed to make things work out. Your heart breaks a little no matter how little you really got to know them (unless you weren't that interested) because there was a potential that they'd be a great companion (at least until they completely disappeared, that is). Even if you say you don't care, some small part of you does and is just trying to put on a brave face. You wonder why all of a sudden the person is disinterested when nothing you did changed. It feels almost worse than a breakup, because you never got to experience the grand love affair that real couples do, and the ones who ghost never let you see it coming, whereas there's a small chance in a relationship.

If your situation is anything like mine was, there is literally no way you could have imagined being ghosted. The guy in question seemed like he cared, and was there for me every single day after we began talking. We even met in person and called each other boyfriend and girlfriend after he asked me to be official. We never got to see each other after that because of the distance, though I tried to make plans, and then the blocking/ghosting out of nowhere. There was no fight, there was no explanation, he was just gone completely.

I understand that some people go through things internally, too, and they might not feel like sticking around with someone they don't care for anymore. I get that sometimes circumstances change and that you don't want to hurt someone. What I truly don't understand is not having the decency to be honest about those things if they come up. If you don't want to be with someone, just explain to them, and then if they become too angry, or something you can't handle, you have the right to block them. Don't just do it to avoid having a potentially uncomfortable conversation. It is disrespectful and implies that the other person is no longer worth your time or effort.

I don't wish ill on the guy who ghosted me. I truly hope he has a great life, and that he achieves the things he sets out to do. I just wish I could have been there to support him along the way, for at least some time if we wouldn't have lasted. Instead, I don't even get to tell him how proud I am of him whether we would have been together or not when he does have a great life and does great things.

I know we obviously weren't meant to work out, but we were meant to be honest with each other as we promised. I never lied to him, so I wish he wouldn't have lied to me.

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