Love is imperfect. Humans are imperfect. Men and women alike, are imperfect. But sometimes, as women, we fall into unhealthy relationships. We fall into relationships with men who don’t know how to love, who don’t know how to give their full hearts, who don’t understand the fire beneath us, driving us to be better girlfriends, better wives, better lovers. This fire that, once ignited, never stops burning for the ones we care for.
Sometimes we fall into relationships with men who cheat, men who lie, men who never had the right intentions in the first place, but we got lost in their talk or gentleness, believing in their good. This isn’t to say that we women are perfect—far from it. But when it comes to relationships where a man cannot fully commit, cannot fully love us, cannot keep his eyes on the relationship instead of wandering elsewhere, why is it that we feel we must convince him to stay?
Why, when we are hurt or mistreated, broken or abused, why do we think we need to persuade a man to not leave? As if we’re the problem, as if we’re the ones who caused pain, rather than the ones who were hurt.
Why, as women, do we feel we need to prove our worth to the men who ‘love’ us? To go to battle for the ones who leave us for someone else, simply because we want to defend their character, even when they wouldn’t so much as pick up a sword for us? Why do we stand beside them, in these unhealthy relationships, even when they’ve hurt us, or are so quick to run when we need them the most?
Why do we feel we must show the world our unwavering loyalty to someone who can’t even prove he’s committed?
Not every relationship will be perfect. Not every man will be a ‘knight in shining armor,’ always doing and saying the right thing. And that’s more than okay. Fairytales are silly and we cannot hold people to unreasonable standards, especially because we won’t be perfect ourselves.
But there is a difference between someone who loves you and someone who is merely with you for convenience. There is a difference between someone who values you and someone who simply enjoys benefits of your connection. There is a difference between someone whose heart is in the relationship, and someone who does not care enough to respect you and the bond you’ve made.
There is a difference between a man who is in it for real, and a man who doesn’t care enough to stay.
And it’s about time you recognized the difference. It’s about time you saw your unhealthy relationship for what it is—a compromise to your character. It’s about time you stopped being victim to the circumstances you have the power, for yourself, to change by walking away.
It’s about time you stopped feeling like you have to convince someone to care for you, to fight for you, to love you enough to stay. Because the right one won’t just up and leave.
Especially when they are the one in the wrong.
If and when you are in this situation, look to yourself first. Make sure you’re loving and caring and being the woman you want to be. But then, when you find yourself in a situation that’s abusive or unhealthy, stop shouldering the blame.
If there are actions you’ve committed, problems you’ve caused, heartache you’ve made happen—do your best to fix those things. But don’t place all the weight upon your shoulders. If he hurts you and you know it’s not because of anything you did wrong, then there is no need to put the burden on yourself.
Someone’s selfish inability to stay loyal, to stay committed, to love you fully does not, and will never make you the one in the wrong.
So please stop thinking that you must convince him to stay, especially after he’s broken you. Your heart may be torn into tiny shreds, your mind might be spiraling in circles, you may be clinging to the relationship, simply because you’ve been caught off guard and you don’t know if you have the strength to stand alone. But you do, honey, you do.
You do not need to chase a love that has no desire to stay.
You do not need to run after someone who doesn’t even care enough to mend what’s been broken. You do not need to love someone who is too self-centered to really love you. Because you deserve infinitely more than that.
You don’t have to convince him to be with you. You don’t have to beg for his affection. You don’t have to compete for his attention. You don’t have to wonder what you could have done differently to keep his eyes focused on you. You don’t have to spend your energy trying to show him your worth.
Because someone who truly loves you will know your worth without having to be told.
Someone who truly loves you won’t have to be given reasons why he should stay; he will already be by your side, growing together, becoming stronger every day.