Anyone else remember that painful to sit through movie starring Jennifer Anniston? I love her, but I hated that movie. It’s been several years since I’ve seen it though, and I’m sure now I would have a different opinion on it now. You see back then I disliked the ending because this couple who were supposed to spend their lives together broke up. And stayed broken up. Aren’t movies supposed to have happy endings? Isn’t true love supposed to prevail? Not in this movie, and not always in real life either.
It was a sad day for me when I realized that people just break up and sometimes it sticks. It happens for a variety of reasons, but deep down there is only one reason: the person wasn’t meant for you. We make excuses as to why that certainly can’t be the case, but it totally is. Because if that was the person for you then nothing would stop them from loving you completely and being with you. If there is anything I’ve learned through my dating experiences it’s this: if you break-up you should stay broken up because everything happens for a reason.
I know, I know. Some of you guys right now are saying “but, my boyfriend and I broke up because he was being a real jerk and cheating on me but he totally stopped and we got back together and he’s been Prince Charming ever since”. Yeah, okay, you. Maybe that did happen. Maybe he is “perfect” now. But wait 5 years. You’ve already proven to him that he’s allowed to disrespect you and you will totally take him back if he says enough nice things. Plus, he’s probably just gotten better at lying to you and is still cheating. Sorry to burst your bubble.
Or, “hey, my ex and I were totally meant to be together but he just wasn’t ready before, but now he is and we are getting back together”. Really? Not ready? True love is unconditional. You know what that means? No conditions. Like “I’ll only be with you when I’m ready to have a relationship” really means “I’m not done screwing around with other people but when I am I’ll totally call you. You aren’t important enough for me now, but maybe in 6 months or a year.”
Yes, break-ups suck, but they free you up to be with the right person. But ONLY if you allow yourself to move on. If you stay fixated on getting the other person back or why things ended you’re only prolonging the healing process. It ended. The reason why doesn’t matter. What does matter is that you pick yourself up and learn how to love again. You take the negative experience and grow from it. Learn what you want and don’t want in a future relationship.
My last few break-ups were hard for me, but they taught me a lot of things. Here is my list, in no particular order:
- When someone tells you something really hard to hear, it’s generally the truth. Listen.
- Don’t change who you are or what you want for anyone. Especially where you live because your support network is there.
- If a man knows how to take care of himself, he will know how to take care of you. If he’s relying on his mommy for everything he will rely on you for everything.
- Love isn’t enough.
- Never chase a man. Another one WILL come along.
- Crying over a man is pointless. You waste mascara and you won’t solve the problem.
- Avoid talking to the person post-break-up. Cut all ties. It’s easier, trust me. You can’t be “friends”.
- Be gracious and classy. The relationship, even though it didn’t work out, taught you something. Appreciate that. Remember that you once loved this person so avoid talking negatively. Just move on.
- Cheating is disrespect. Point blank. Love isn’t disrespectful.
- You will say that you will never love anyone or trust anyone again but you will. You will be happy again. You will love again. And you will forget those men who made you sad because you have one who makes you so happy. Trust me.
Don’t worry, I didn’t write this because Andy Roddick and I broke up. He’s great. He respects me. And buys me random presents. And understands why I need 100 pairs of shoes (okay, maybe he doesn’t, but he also doesn’t complain about them). And I know that he will always be honest with me. I feel like I’ve finally found someone worthy of trust and someone who totally gets me, and doesn’t want me to change anything about myself. I want to say that I’m lucky, but in reality I’m not. It wasn’t luck that brought him in my life. It was me learning from previous relationships what I need and having the courage to go out and find it.
So instead of looking backwards at what you feel you’ve lost, focus on what you need in the future. And of course, go shoe shopping and have girls’ nights. Because that’s what single is for.
But, PLEASE, avoid cutting your bangs with rusty scissors. Just promise me that.