To Anyone Terrified of Love Because of Their Fucked Up Parents

Love can be brutal. Manipulative. Destructive. It’s something that us kids of deadbeat dads, divorced parents, and should-be-divorced parents would rather keep our distance from. So here’s an open letter to anyone terrified of love, because of the people who raised them.
Danielle Drislane
Danielle Drislane

1. You have an advantage.

You might think you’re more fucked up than all of those lucky kids who grew up with perfect parents who never cheated on each other or beat the shit out of each other, but you’re actually better off than they are. You know what to avoid. You know what all of the red flags look like, which means that you can avoid relationships that are as unhealthy as their marriage is.

2. You haven’t seen the good side of marriage.

You’ve seen the fights, the tears, the bruises. But you haven’t seen the tender kisses and the thoughtful gifts and the genuine apologies. Love isn’t what your parents have tricked you into thinking it is. Real love won’t make your eyes water. Real love will make your heart race and thighs tingle.

3. Leaving is always an option.

If you find your soul mate, you shouldn’t run away from them, because you’re worried about what they’ll turn into years down the line. Take things one day at a time. If the relationship goes sour, you always have the option to end it. Divorce exists for a reason.

4. Everyone is terrified of love.

We’re all scared of commitment for different reasons. Maybe your ex cheated on you. Maybe you don’t believe in love. Or maybe you have abandonment issues, because your deadbeat dad left when you were only a kid. It doesn’t matter what your reason is, because we’re all in the same boat.

5. You don’t have to turn into your parents.

Your parents’ infidelity isn’t in your blood. You can be better than them. You can be stronger. You can find someone that’ll help you learn how to communicate in a healthy way and love like you’re meant to love. Someone who will build you up instead of destroy you.

6. You realize that single life isn’t so bad.

You can’t understand why the hell your parents still put up with each other, because you can see the situation clearly. If you ever find yourself in a fucked up relationship, you won’t hesitate to leave, because you know that single life would be better than a life with someone you’ve grown to hate.

7. It’s not your fault they act the way they act.

Your parents might be tossing your name around during their arguments, but they’re fighting about something deeper. You’re not the real problem. Don’t let yourself believe that there’s something wrong with you. You’re a beautiful person, and anyone would be lucky to have you.

8. “Daddy issues” are more common than you think.

You’re not unlovable, because of what your parents put you through. Pretty much everyone out there has some sort of problem with their father or mother or sibling. You’re not alone, so don’t act like you are.

9. You can’t blame your parents for everything.

Sure, they’ve fucked up. All parents have. But when you’re in your 20s and 30s, you can’t keep blaming everything on them. You have to start forming your own life and taking responsibility for your own actions.

10. Look forward, not backward.

Don’t dwell on the things that went wrong throughout your childhood. Think about everything that’s going to go right in your future. Leave the past in the past. Otherwise, you’re only going to end up making yourself as miserable as your parents made each other. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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