Not all love is equal.
I spent a year and eight months in a relationship with someone I loved dearly – but the love that was there was misguided. It wasn’t healthy. It was off-key and headed for all the wrong directions and based on so many things that love shouldn’t be based on, and overall… it was wrong. It was wrong to drag it out for so long.
I’m sure plenty of people face the same sort of circumstances. Loving someone for the wrong reasons, or staying for the wrong reasons, regretting so much time spent in a haze now that you can finally see clearly – I never thought twice about it. I was so sure that this relationship was where I was meant to be, so content with my own perception of destiny and my own fears of being alone that I forced something together that didn’t really even fit that well to begin with.
I cut off pieces of me to fit in with them. And this occurs to many people. This is because that I needed to be in love. I needed them to be in love with me. Regardless of what kind of relationship it was and how it affected us and the people around us, I needed it. We both did. And it was a catastrophe.
Love shouldn’t be based in need. I was lonely – a series of events and misguided choices had led me to a place where I shouldn’t have been and where I felt immensely out-of-place. I felt different and alone and like I was going to spend three years of my life stuck with just myself for company. I was depressed and anxiety ridden and a mess.
Then I met them. They were depressed and anxiety ridden and mess. We came together under the same sort of false understandings of destiny and how we thought life to work. We bonded over similar interests, including mental illness. We became close, and eventually we started dating – because they liked me, and I was lonely. And I was so happy to have someone who actually liked me and wanted to be with me, I jumped on it regardless of whether or not I truly felt like I wanted to be with them.
I needed that relationship dearly. I needed them. Over time, I do feel like I developed a wanting for them – I do think I valued the relationship as more than just an escape and self validation. But that feeling was frequently fleeting, and when it was just myself sitting alone and thinking about why I was there – I knew it was because I couldn’t bring myself to go anywhere else.
I was scared. I didn’t want to be alone again. I didn’t feel like I had many friends, I felt like I wasn’t noticed, I felt like I was just a mess relying on someone else who was also a mess to keep me company.
That wasn’t right, I realize now. It wasn’t right to keep something going for so long when I knew from almost the beginning what it was. But I cared for them, and I didn’t want to lose their friendship, and I didn’t want them to be alone either – so it made sense to just stay wallowing together.
Needed love accomplishes nothing. It creates nothing. It doesn’t build people or lets them grow – instead, it keeps them stagnant and complacent with whatever was going to come, and it makes them comfortable. So comfortable in what they have, that they don’t want to lose that sense of control for fear of spinning out of it.
Wanted love, on the other hand…
After I ended that relationship, I was content with my being alone. I enjoyed it, even. I liked the freedom. I liked the concept of being myself, not myself plus someone.
I truly felt like I would’ve been like that for a while. Because I truly was content being with just myself. And I felt like I had grown from that alone – and I knew I had made the right choice.
But there was someone who I had known for a while who came along – someone who I would’ve never guessed I would’ve ended up with. I enjoyed them. I enjoyed their company. I enjoyed who they were and what we were and for a while we were just… I have no clue. But my point is, is that eventually it grew into a relationship that I really wanted to be in.
I didn’t need it. If it didn’t happen, that was fine. I just enjoyed them so much and I liked them more than anybody and I wanted to be with them.
I feel content, in that section of my life. I find myself loving them in a way that I didn’t quite understand before. I want to love them, and I do, and it’s truly the best relationship I’ve ever had the pleasure of being in. And with the way it’s going, I hope it sticks around for a long time. It seems like we want it to.
And I’m glad I have the opportunity.
I feel like I’ve grown quite a bit. I feel like I’ve found myself a bit more than I did before. I feel more content simply being myself and going through life as myself. Trying to fake it through may feel fine for a little while, but after a bit it’s just gonna drag you down. It’s okay to need time – just don’t try to lie to yourself about your intentions.
Relationships that are built on the desire to be with one another first and foremost, like I’ve finally found – I think it really helps. And at the end of the day, you really should be with someone you want to be with. Someone that builds up who you are, makes you into a better version of yourself than you were before, and really just makes life a joy to live in.
Destiny may or may not be real.
But there are things right before our eyes for us if we just take the time to look around.
– Brandon, 2:24 PM