Humans are social creatures. We’re not meant to live our whole lives completely isolated. From birth, we’re programmed to enjoy the human touch, the nurturing feeling of being paid attention to. It makes sense then that we grow up wanting a love beyond that of the love between parents and their kids, or among friends.
The problem is, we’re not always guaranteed to have that love reciprocated. To love someone means putting yourself at risk for getting your heart broken, whether it be because the two of you are not a good match, or situations come up and break you two apart.
Heartbreak sucks. It feels like having a huge weight in your chest that just leaves you so tired and sad. I remember spending days crying in bed after my first heartbreak, and when I thought I was better, all it took was one little memory to trigger me back to crying, forcing ice cream down my throat and listening to “Greatest Love of All” by Whitney Houston for probably the 1,000th time.
“You’ll be fine, give it time, get over it, go meet someone new,” is all I heard each time a relationship didn’t work out for me. Each time, I tried so hard to convince myself that it’s just a little temporary pain, that it would go away and maybe next time, that would be my perfect person. My Chuck Bass, for all you Gossip Girl fans (Chuck and Blair got me through some rough nights guys).
But after several horrible breakups, I’ve come to the realization that my problem, besides my terrible taste in guys is that I never allowed myself to heal from my very first heartbreak.
It is our own responsibility to heal and to grow as a person. No matter what others put you through, it is solely up to you and you alone to pick yourself up and to really give yourself the chance to give yourself the love and attention you deserve after going through something rough and maybe even traumatizing.
I didn’t give myself time to really think about what went wrong. I didn’t even give myself time to think about why I wasn’t happy! I spent all my energy into worrying about whether anyone else could love me after ending things with the last guy when I should have been focusing on how I could love myself better so that I didn’t seek that love and attention I so desperately wanted out of someone not worthy of it.
I placed all my time and energy into people and situations that did not benefit me and did not help me grow, but instead disturbed my peace and stunted my growth.
Looking back at my relationships, a lot more heartache could have been avoided had I sat down, cried myself dry, and then given myself time and space to feel. To feel pain, and sadness and anxiety and bitterness. And once I could acknowledge my feelings, I could work on moving past it. On my own time, in tune with my feelings.
I don’t regret my heartbreaks, though. It made me learn a lot about myself and about relationships in general. Do I think I could have been smarter and avoided a lot of unnecessary pain? Hell yeah. But what matters at this point is what I choose to do from here on out. Like most things, heartbreak can only hurt you so long as you stay stuck in the past. Stay busy, focus on your friends and family, treat yourself often and give yourself time and some tough love. You may not get your Chuck Bass right after it, but you will be so full of peace and love for yourself, you’ll be too busy enjoying your life and those already in it to worry about people who don’t deserve a place in it.