Why You Settle For Boys Who Don’t Deserve You

The Breakup

Believe it or not, the point of this article is not about these men that take you for granted. The ones that flirt with other girls in front of you, won’t text you back for four hours, the ones who are still on tinder while you’re dating them. I’ve heard every player’s game in the book. Hell, I’ve experienced quite a few myself. But this isn’t about them, this is about you.

The harsh truth of the matter is, no matter how hard you try, you can’t control the behavior of anyone but yourself. Trust me, I’ve tried.

As a therapist, I learned that people will only change if they want to. You can’t turn a “bad guy” good. You can’t make him text you back. You can play all the games you want, you can change your hair color, get a tan, lose some weight, but at the end of the day, you can’t force someone to love you the way you want them to, no matter how good you look or how well you “play the game”. And anyway, why would you want to? Why would you want to force love from someone? Your love is valuable and should be worked for.

The thing is, we can’t put all of our energy into blaming these guys. I’m not saying they’re innocent by any means, but I can, with 99.9% certainty, guarantee you that the men that hurt women are seriously hurting inside themselves. Maybe he grew up with a father who cheated on his mother, so he learned that love is deceit and lies. Maybe, in high school, he was vulnerable with a girl for the first time in his life and had his heart completely shattered so he vowed to never open up again. Who KNOWS what his story is, but one thing I know for sure is that only hurt people hurt people. It’s not your job (unless your his therapist) to fix him, your job is to fix yourself so you don’t attract guys like him.

But, again, this isn’t about him. He’s not forcing you to stick around, he’s not holding a gun to your head and telling you to drunk text him 15 times in a row… YOU’RE doing that. But why????? Why can’t you walk away from a man who isn’t treating you right?

I’m going to give you the harsh truth and you might not like it, but it’s something I had to learn myself:

The people you chose to associate with are a mirror of how you see yourself.

So, you keep dating assholes and losers… that’s not a great reflection of your own self esteem. If you feel dependent on having a man at all times, that means that you don’t feel whole and complete enough within yourself to be alone. You might depend on the attention of a guy to feel beautiful, strong, and worthy of love. Let me tell you.. this is DANGEROUS!!!! Your boyfriend should compliment you, not complete you. Your relationship should be something you enjoy, not something you rely on. Nobody can save you, you have to save yourself.

I used to think it was a pile of shit, but although cheesy, it couldn’t be truer: you can’t love someone until you love yourself. I’d like to modify this though- you can definitely love a bunch of players if you don’t love yourself. But if you want to be treated with respect and kindness, you first have to treat yourself that way.

Stop wasting your energy crying over a guy who won’t love you the way you want and start focusing your energy on why it’s so important to you to be loved by someone who treats you poorly.

Why can’t you be alone? Why can’t you feel whole and complete being single, instead of repeatedly settling for douchebags? What do you need from them that you aren’t giving to yourself?

Think about it.

And I mean, really sit down and THINK about it.

Think about the way you talk to yourself with your thoughts.

Do you compliment yourself often or do you criticize yourself?
Do you think more about things you don’t like about yourself instead of the things that make you incredible?
Do you feel proud of yourself?
Do you forgive yourself for things you’ve done wrong?

Also notice how you treat your body- do you drink a lot? Smoke a lot? Do too many drugs? Eat all junk? Spend all day in your room with the curtains closed? Live in a room that looks like a tornado whipped through it? Leave dishes in the sink until they mold?

START treating yourself with the same love you want someone else to treat yourself with. If you want a man to pamper you, pamper yourself. If you want a man to love you, love yourself and I promise you, it’ll come.

START noticing your thoughts. Start catching yourself talking down to yourself or over analyzing your appearance in a negative way.

START looking in the mirror every day and say,

“I am whole and complete on my own and nobody can change how I think about myself.” or whatever affirmation resonates with what you’re trying to work on (if you feel like you’re ugly tell yourself that you’re beautiful, if you feel like you’re stupid tell yourself that you’re smart, etc.) And when you say it, look in your eyes and really BELIEVE it. Or fake it until you make it, because one day, if you keep saying it to yourself and acting as though it’s true, you will believe it.

You get what you attract.

If you put out a vibe of confidence, that will completely change the type of guys you attract. You’ll notice that when you treat yourself the way you deserve, you’ll attract guys that treat you right and you won’t settle for anything less.

It’s on YOU, ladies. Players wouldn’t play if no girl fell for it. If you run back to him every time he does you wrong, you’re rewarding him for his poor behavior. If you’re crying to him and yelling at him and going on and on to him about what he’s done, you’re still giving him attention. Men want attention, and by giving him these emotional reactions you’re giving him that attention, showing how much you care. I’m not saying to ignore your feelings, I’m saying WALK AWAY. Cry in your room if you have to. But don’t give him the satisfaction of knowing that he controls the way you feel. And don’t let yourself believe that your life depends on this relationship. It’ll take time, but if you love yourself you will get over it and you will find something better.

So next time you’re about to call him drunk for the fifth time that weekend, stop and ask yourself why. Why am I begging for someone that doesn’t beg for me?

Stop looking at him and start looking at yourself and I guarantee your romantic life will drastically change.

Self-love is truly the revolution, ladies.

To quote my dude J. Cole, “the question isn’t, ‘do he love ya?’ the question is, ‘do ya love yourself?’” Thought Catalog Logo Mark

Artist and love-giver navigating New York City.

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