I’m not saying you have to have it all seamlessly together to be loved. I actually think that real love grows when someone finds unspeakable beauty in the place you’ve been cut open. But the thing is, you can’t expect someone else to heal those wounds. They can love you and that love can facilitate healing, but you are the only person who can heal yourself. Nobody else will ever be able to alleviate your burdens. It may seem like it for a little while, but the brokenness of your foundation will always show eventually.
Yes, love is transformative and enlightening and humbling and probably the most real thing we can experience. It is responsible for a whole slew of miraculousness, but romantic love will not solve your problems. The high you get from the newness of someone will eventually subside, as it always does, and you’ll be left even more raw than you were before, facing the brutal reality that the thing you were waiting for to fix everything didn’t.
It’s for this reason that I believe we often see people undergoing self-transformations after breakups. Of course there are other reasons for these behaviors, but I do think that in many cases, it has to do with people realizing that nobody else is responsible for resolving their own issues.
I know many couples who have found one another and rely on each other to function. They are the epitome of unhealthy, and what they all have in common is that they all found their partners while they were honestly broken people. For example, a friend of mine found her boyfriend while she was coming off of an addiction to hard drugs, and had honestly lost her will to live. She never healed from those experiences, she just learned to lean on her boyfriend and to this day, she still says that if he ever left her, she would kill herself. She’s not exaggerating.
People and love can be the most integral part of the healing process. But you can’t just wait for somebody else to do the work. You have to get your ass on the floor, realize that you’re imperfect and you feel unworthy and you’ve made mistakes and you’re afraid of this and that and the other thing. You have to come to terms with these things that are inside you. You don’t have to like them. You just have to be able to sit with them. You have to be okay enough to still be standing on your own if and when somebody leaves you there.
The happily ever after will not save you, and the love of your life will not heal you. They will only love you, and while that may facilitate great healing, it can also be the source of your demise if things don’t work out until the day you die of old age. If your peace and acceptance is contingent on someone else, and if your hope is external, you do not really have any of those things. Don’t fool yourself into thinking you do, it will be a price that you alone will have to pay.