Sometimes we love people who hurt us—this is the way love works. We can’t help who we fall for; we can’t say no to hearts that beat wildly. So we jump, headfirst into relationships with people. So we give everything we have without wondering what we’ll get in return. So we open our hearts to possibility, to security, to warmth in someone else’s arms.
And sometimes we get hurt, so so hurt.
Sometimes we love people who don’t want the same things, whose priorities are not aligned with ours, who just can’t love us the way we need to be loved. Sometimes we love people who don’t know how to love, who don’t love themselves, who are entangled with past relationships and people and end up leaving us brokenhearted because they weren’t ready to commit.
And if you’re in one of those places—reeling from a devastating breakup, aching with the loss of what you thought would be your forever, wandering aimlessly around with a broken heart, trying to regain your footing after being left or cheated on—I want you to know something:
I want you to know, first, that you deserve better. But I also want you to know that it’s okay to miss the man who broke you. It’s human to miss the man who broke you.
See, when terrible things happen in love, we’re so quick to run away, to blame the people who hurt us, to hate ourselves and bury our heads in the sand. We’re so quick to turn our backs to love, to close off, to stay guarded in order to protect ourselves.
Our friends and family members wipe our tears, they encourage us with words of empowerment and poignant phrases, telling us that we should never settle for a man like that again, attaching strings of swearwords to his name, reminding us of our worth and that we should leave that man in the dust.
All these words are so helpful, and what we need to hear. But it’s easier said than done. It’s easier said than done when we’re standing there, our broken heart in our hands, trying to remember how to breathe.
So if you’re the woman who’s been left, been stepped on, been shattered, and you’re still missing him—don’t hate yourself. Because moving on is a process, letting go takes time, removing yourself and learning to heal is hard.
And though you know you deserve better, walking away from him will still hurt. Because you loved him, and you can’t change that, even after what he did.
The world wants us to flip a switch and say no to the men that hurt us. I wish I could tell you that’s possible. I wish I could tell you it’s that easy. I wish I could give you a solution, a magic potion that would suddenly erase all your pain and let you leave that guy in your past.
But leaving is hard. So so hard.
This doesn’t mean you go back to him, this doesn’t mean you give him another chance or let him into your world with open arms. It means you say goodbye. It means you take your pride and start walking.
It means you take your heart back, reclaim it, and tell yourself, “I am worthy. I am whole. I am moving on. I will be okay.”
It means you let him go as best as you can, at your own pace, without hating yourself for missing him.
Because no matter how much you’re been broken, you still miss the people you love(d)—and that’s not wrong. True leaving and true healing take time.
So wherever you are on this journey of heartbreak, remember your worth. Remember who you are and how you love—fully, fearlessly. Remember that sometimes we love the wrong people and that’s because we’re human. Remember that you are strong for still standing after you’ve been pushed down. Remember that you don’t deserve a love that isn’t as full and beautiful as the one you give.
Remember that any man who doesn’t see your true worth doesn’t deserve you. Remember that it’s okay to feel a mess of emotions when you’re struggling to move on. Remember that you may miss him at times, and this doesn’t mean you’re a weak woman.
Remember that letting go means slowly distancing yourself, slowing untying your love, thread by thread, from the knots it’s tied around his and your heart.
Remember that you will move on from this, let him go, and become even stronger.
Remember that the emotions you feel are real, and valid, and no one can take them away from you, reduce them, or make you feel as if they are foolish. Remember that this is your journey and sometimes you won’t take the quickest or best path—you’ll take the path that’s right for you.
But remember that your loved ones are here for you, fighting for you, encouraging you every step of the way.
Remember that you will get through this and find someone who loves you without conditions or baggage or intentions to break you.
Remember that you are a beautiful, strong, big-hearted soul.
Remember who you are, and have always been—a force, a wonder, a woman.