You Don’t Know The First Thing About Love


You’re that I’m-not-looking-for-a-relationship type. You’re the fine-on-my-own-and-I-do-what-I-want type. The type that feels like sex is liberating, especially when it’s casual and selfish. You make it clear you’re not interested in “anything serious” and you draw the line in the sand. When the other person starts to inevitably develop feelings, you push back and push him away.


Someone new catches you off guard with a witty comment or a hidden talent. And suddenly you’re intrigued, and you’re bored with the last one because he still wants to date and you keep repeating yourself, so you might as well explore something else. And you actually give this new person the time of day, because he’s smart, and you can tell.

You agree to see him, because why not? And suddenly you’re both awkward and eager, and you realize you have more in common than you ever expected. You wonder where he’s been hiding, and what’s taken him so long. And why your heart jumps out of your chest when he looks at you with that strong, steady gaze. And why your knees buckle when his hand brushes yours.

He says, “I love you” too soon. You don’t know how to respond. You’re nervous, you’re overwhelmed, but somehow, it feels right. You say it back.

He says he wants to spend his life with you. He says he’s lucky, that he’ll buy you a ring if he could, and he’s so glad he found you. He holds you like he’s never letting go.

You look through his eyes and into his soul, and you know it’s the truth. You know he believes it, that he’s never felt so powerfully connected to another human being. You’re impossibly happy.

And then you’re not. Because life gets in the way, as it tends to do, and all your passion and affection is based on that one time in that one restaurant when he said, “I love you,” and you thought you should love him too.

You decided on him: he gave you everything, and you said, “It’s enough.” You forgot to be the fine-on-my-own type and morphed into the he’s-responsible-for-my-happiness type. Looking back, you’re not surprised it fell apart.

He gave you everything, and it wasn’t enough. You blamed him for that. You drove him away. And when he went, you felt like dying. Like the earth could swallow you up and maybe then you’d be at peace.

You forgot how to stand on your own two feet. And when the rug was ripped out from underneath, you and your illusions came crashing right down.

Did you love him? How could you, when your relationship was so clouded by an insatiable desire to be the best and most important thing in his life. When your self-worth was built upon his worship.

That’s not love.

That’s codependence, insecurity, obsession, and attachment. It’s not love and it never will be, not until you understand that love is about giving and not receiving, that it doesn’t matter if he walks away because neither of you were happy to begin with.

You go back to being the fine-on-my-own-and-I-do-what-I-want type. You sleep with someone random, just because you can. Then somebody interesting comes along, and history repeats itself. TC Mark

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