My New Rules

It feels like you’re on top of the world, like your heart is among the clouds and your feet will never touch the ground. You’ve found this incredible person who laughs with you, instead of at you, and who talks about your favorite things with you, instead of talking about you. This person is heaven in human form; intelligent and kind, passionate and beautiful. This person is the kind of person you dream of being and the kind of person you show off to your parents, you show off to your friends, you show off to the world.

This person is everything -- except for yours

Maybe this person is in a relationship already, and it’s not with you. Maybe they’re physically single but emotionally unavailable. Maybe you’re not their type, but whatever the reason is, it doesn’t stop you from loving them.

You can pine away after them, stalk their social media, wait for them to pick up the phone and call you. You can spend your days hoping and praying that they’re thinking about you too, even though you know they’re not, even though you know they don’t belong to you like this.

You can let this pain fester into a hurricane in your stomach that clouds your judgment, turning into a bitter taste of resentment or heartache when you see their pictures come up on your timeline.

Or

You can stop yourself before it gets too late. Before you put them on this pedestal that makes them incapable of doing any wrong. You can draw the line before it becomes too blurry to tell the difference between casual attraction and unhealthy infatuation.

It’s as Miss. Dua Lipa said: "I got new rules, I count ‘em." And here are my new rules for you.

 

1.  Acknowledge your feelings. Accept your feelings.

What, exactly, are your feelings for this person?

Did you meet them in class one day and become friends over the course of a semester, before you realized you wanted something more? Did you see them in the dining hall and immediately know this person is the one for you because it was love at first sight? Have you been best friends with this person since kindergarten but hid behind the pretense of friendship, because you were nervous that anything more could be the end of everything?

Say your feelings out loud. Even if you’re not proud of them, say them. Say them in front of your mirror. Write them in your journal and rip the paper up. Say them in a Snapchat video and delete it. Or send it. Or just keep it for Memories.

Say them, write them, feel them, accept them. These feelings are a part of you and ignoring them only makes the potential heartbreak worse. Acknowledge what you feel and accept what you feel. Even if you’re not proud of these feelings, allow yourself to feel them.

You’re only human.

 

2. Reflect on these feelings. Reflect on this person.

Why, exactly, are you feeling what you’re feeling for this person?

Is it the way their eyes shine when they laugh or the way their voice sounds when they’re talking to you about something they love? Is it because they know when it’s time to talk to you and when it’s time to just be silent because they know you? Are you in love with this person for who they are? 

Or are you in love with the way they make you feel?

Because then why can’t you be together? If you realize you’re meant to be with this person because you are two halves of one heart or peanut butter and jelly, why aren’t you together?

Maybe it’s because you’ve already got them on this pedestal that makes them incapable of doing any wrong. Maybe you haven’t drawn the line yet and that’s why you’ve gotten this far down in this article.

Take a step back. Take out a journal, your headphones, or a magazine. Why do you feel what you feel for this person? Is it truly love? If you’re confused about love and infatuation, there’s really only one way to tell the difference: one is mutual and one is not.

 

3. Reduce contact. Seek closure. 

Maybe now you’re starting to realize that your heart is breaking over a fantasy you’ve created in your head. Maybe you’ve only read this far down because you’re curious as to why someone would put themselves through such a scenario.

But this fantasy that you’ve created is better than reality and that’s why you continue to pine after this person. It doesn’t matter, you think, that they don’t love you back right now because this person is incredible, the best person on Earth! They know me, they care about me!

If they care about you, do they know that your heart is breaking because of them? Do they care?

Someone does care, even if it’s not the someone you want to care. Someone wants you to put on your favorite pajamas while listening to your favorite song while eating your favorite ice cream. Someone wants you to feel better. And if it’s not the someone you want so desperately to care, do yourself the smallest of favors.

Take a step back. Mute this person on your social media for a while, so you don’t have to see their posts every day. Wait for them to text you first. If a couple days go by, don’t respond immediately but maybe after you’ve finished your homework or scrolling through Instagram. If a week goes by, don’t respond for a few days or so.

And if a whole month goes by, don’t respond at all.

If they care about you, they’d pick up the phone and they wouldn't only call you when they’re drunk and alone.

It’s not easy to distance yourself from the fantasy, but it shouldn’t be easy. What you felt was real and things that are real don’t disappear instantly. This person will come around if they care. They’ll disappear if they don’t.

 

It’ll take time, but you’ve got time. You’ve got time to fall in love with yourself and fall in love with the world. Use your time to take care of yourself, instead of this person, because you are forever and heartbreak is only temporary.