I have been in relationships since I am fifteen years old. Some awesome, sad, weird, awkward, strange; some longer and some shorter. There were a couple of months in between when I was just by myself and I really enjoyed it; however, there was this feeling of wanting to be with someone because it makes me strangely a bit happier than being single or “alone”. I have to admit that I have seen a bunch of BS along the way rather than saying I have seen it all by now which makes me sound and look as if I have had one million relationships. Actually, I have had six solid, long relationships in my life that somehow did not work out.

So, at some point in my life, I was in this relationship. Life was awesome, as it always is in the beginning. Floating on this pink cloud and everything is just fine. Quickly, he and I decided to be “exclusive” and shortly after moving in together since this is clearly the way to get to really know each other. The alarm bells rang loudly and shone very brightly in a deep red like a police car trying to make other drivers aware of a hazard but “let’s just listen to the head, not the gut”, I thought. After all, three months into the relationship I had this feeling I knew this person forever, so why not move in together. This timeline-keeping that I unconsciously did was logged in my brain and allowed me to create some sort of relationship structure.

When other friends/couples told me they did not move in together or they did not take “the next step”, I had the feeling that my relationship was normal. We were normal. Everybody else is just messed up and makes life more complicated than it already is. Who needs all the drama, all the waiting, all the insanity? At the same time, I thought how one person would/could be my one partner since it became somewhat serious at this point. I made legitimate room for another person in my life and in my apartment. Is there a catch?

Is it all too good to be true? Why is it so easy this time? Maybe it is because he is hiding something. Yes, that is it. Or wait, maybe he realizes soon that I am a horrible person to be and live with or if it is too good it means that it all will crash soon. I was also afraid that I have to let go of me, myself and I – the me I have known for so long. The me that I trust more than anybody else. What have I learned from years of dating and being in relationships? Continue reading.

Don’t rush into anything. It all takes time to realize if this person could be someone you want to stick to/hang out with for a while. It is okay to not be 100% into the other person and this does not mean that it is not meant to be. I read on a bumper sticker the other day: “If it is not fun, why do it?”

Am I having fun seeing the other person? Yes. So, that’s that. I learned the difference between a red flag and human flaws. Sort of like, I look in the mirror and say that my hair looks awesome today but I know I am not perfect either and I have to brush my teeth. Does that make sense?

Arguments do not automatically mean something is wrong in a relationship. Disagreements are normal and a learning opportunity. However, when the other person wants to control you and keep you down by making themselves big, pretending they know and can do everything better in a cocky, arrogant way, it is a downer and annoying. Don’t tell me to wipe away my tears and see a shrink or go running but ask why I am crying in the first place. Small words and gestures go a long way. There is a difference between wanting what’s best for me, and knowing what’s best. The intentions may have been pure but that does not mean he knew what is really best for me or what is in my interest.

When things seem to make no sense, they usually don’t. I know people who tell me that they know the laws a certain country applies by simply reading a book or two on that subject. I learned that being in a relationship will most certainly not fix certain problems I struggle with. I do not want my partner to fix anything for me. He can suggest things but do not be all over me. I have experience, I am not a child and I do not need anyone to fix or clean my previous or current life. I do not want a relationship to act as some sort of escape from something else when all I actually need is just a break to breathe.  My flaws are my flaws, my weird stuff is my weird stuff and I am a whole entire person. As life progresses, I realized that romance and idealism start to wither away and good guys don’t always win. I also learned that apparently telling the truth isn’t always the best policy.

The past does not exist anymore and allowing this period of time to cause my pain is counter-productive to this time I have now. I know the future is unsure and cause and effect are things I would and could simplify, but I really cannot. What I can be sure about is my present state, and that this very moment is my opportunity to make the life I want to have. I am a sum of my experiences, including the not-so-proud-moments I have been through. We all make mistakes but are given the opportunity to learn and grow from it. Let’s file it under “experience” but I will pay attention to the people I keep around. I will no longer allow the bullshit that happened to keep me down. It is toxic for me to relive those moments and filing the present tense regret, pain or even depression.

There are struggles and problems in every relationship and there is always a lot involved but the key is to respect the other person since there initially was affection, love, and trust. So now, I send him light and love for his future and then I drop it. 

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