Lessons My Past Relationships Have Taught Me

I used to think that your “first love” was always the first person you’ve ever dated. If that makes any sense. I’m still in high school, but as a person growing up in a generation that moves as quickly as a passing wind, I learned a thing or two; by the time I was in 7th grade I realized that your first love, is really just that—the first person you’ve ever loved, simple.

I’ve dated about three guys…and have had about a billion crushes.

I’ve grown as a person, age doesn’t necessarily define your maturity, but it does define your attitude and feelings towards a lot of things. I think a lot of people fail to realize that in relationships. I recently went through a break up with a guy I dated for a year and it made me sit down and think of all the things I’ve tried to become and change about myself in order to be accepted by people—specifically boys. I not only learned about myself and the mistakes I should not repeat, but also what I was taught by the people I used to once feel deeply about.

My first boyfriend, who was my best friend and then a lover was the first guy I spent most of my effort on to make him aware that I was around. He wasn’t the “right” one, obviously. I was just beginning to feel emotions for another person that wasn’t family or a friend, nevertheless, past decisions bring you present lessons.

He taught me the difference between understanding and the act of just being there.Understanding will always be ahead of love. Being understood by another person makes you feel less alone..at least for me. It makes me feel like I’m not as stuck in an invisible box, as much as I think I am. Being with someone through their tough times is a sign of comfort and care, but if you cannot relate to them.. even the slightest bit then you’re unfortunately not the brick wall the taker thinks you are. We all experience different situations, but we still feel the same feelings—confusion, lust, passion, loneliness. If you can’t emotionally relate, you can’t understand.

I used to be very clingy and insecure. I tried hard not to make it seem like I was, but the limitless amounts of signs of neediness really blew my cover. I was going through a rough patch in my life and I guess dating someone during the time I was trying to find myself, was a bad idea. Not only did it add to my insecurity, but also the stress I was trying to get past from.

My second boyfriend was really the first person I connected with, he won’t be the last, but he showed me and allowed me to feel what it’s like to genuinely be appreciated for regardless of the flaws. He taught me that even if “in love,” sometimes you’re simply too much of a baggage to carry, sometimes you’re not enough. I asked a lot of him, besides, we lived really far away from each other which made it hard to constantly see one another. We were both tired of it—I was tired of his laziness and he was tired of my requests and nagging. He taught me to be less than—in order to reach a healthy and stable relationship life for myself. Self-preservation is extremely important. We’re all fighting through something in life, and we cannot add that pressure and try to share it with a partner. There’s nothing wrong with asking for support from other people but expecting people to solve your problems is where we tend to go wrong. I expected him to ultimately make me feel better, so I depended on him. That’s never a healthy mindset. We need to fight our own battles and find support along the way, not dependency.

In January, my boyfriend—now ex-boyfriend, and I broke up. We had broken up before, but we tried again. We waited 8 months and over the summer of 2014 we began to talk again as friends and then best friends. I was at a good time in my life and my relationship with him was the most healthiest I’ve been in. We were close and we told each other almost everything. My only mistake was not realizing when something is over; that it’s over when fights become ways of talking..and finally, talking becomes silence altogether. His mistake was not speaking up about how he felt when he did not feel anything anymore.

He was my third boyfriend. He was all in all, my first real love.

He taught me more,

he continued to expand on my past lessons.

We broke up the first time because of the lack of communication and trust. We broke up still feeling the feelings we felt the first time we talked. Sometimes, you’re able to rekindle past relationships. He became a source of reliability, he became my best friend, my walking regret of the things I should’ve done and the person I should’ve been when I was with him. We were able to become one once again.

Within a span of two months I was able to feel everything with him. I was able to feel what it’s like to care for someone so much you’d do anything to be everything. I was able to feel what it’s like to be angry with someone without hating them, without wanting to leave. I was able to feel love, what it’s like to watch someone sleep so peacefully while they’re unaware of the thoughts and feelings you cannot express in the English language. Someone who listened more even after you stopped talking, someone who made you laugh until you were sure you had broken the sides of your stomach.

Boredom outweighs memories..he taught me that.

He taught me that the mastering of ignoring and nights without goodnights, screams louder without there being any sound.

He taught me that even when trying sometimes things are not enough.

He taught me about moving on and adapting. Sometimes things don’t work out and we have to allow ourselves to feel it deeply into our chest and all the way down the ribcage, and then simply accept it. I’m still in the process of moving forward, but I know that I’m capable of it.

These past two months that I’ve been with myself, I’ve come to know of my own worth and what I deserve. I’ve learned that feelings change, people change—things are not temporary and accepting that makes it hurt a little less. Thought Catalog Logo Mark


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