I find this quote so inspiring because I have felt this way. Like I’ve taken so much, yet somehow I’m still here, and still trying to move forward and achieve dreams and aspirations…including one’s I have for my love life.
We’re all troubled in some way. Nobody on this earth is perfect, and the one person that ever supposedly was got himself crucified. We all have skeletons in the closet, dirty laundry to air out, and baggage we carry with us on an everyday basis. That’s part of life, that’s what happens when the world keeps on hitting as you get older. But, some of us have been hit harder and more often than others. We keep getting beaten, bruised, and bloodied…but we get up for more each time. That’s not to say it doesn’t change us with every fall, break us down a little more, make it just a little harder to keep moving forward.
We become jaded, bitter, scarred, and calloused… all while still remaining vulnerable, usually, to at least some degree. We may grow a thicker skin, be able to shovel a little bit more shit than we used to, but the core vulnerability is still there.
It’s a little different for women I think; they’re expected to show a little more emotion and it’s more socially acceptable for them to do so. There is no stigma attached to a “broken woman,” but when you feel like you’re a man who’s been completely broken down, you sure as shit don’t want the world to know.
You don’t want to be a reclusive hermit either, putting a permanent ass imprint on your couch and having your most important conversation of the day with the guy who delivers your pizza. You still need to get out there, meet people, and yes…date people.
That’s where it gets a little tricky; you know you’re damaged goods but you still want to be loved like you’re not. It’s hard to imagine someone seeing any beauty in such vast imperfections.
Still, we trudge on and try to find something worthwhile, someone to love us the way we want to love them. And God bless your hearts, there are some of you women who are capable of handling and eventually fixing a broken man. The problem is with us. We have serious trouble letting someone else in again.
But if we want to have any chance at romance, at love, at finding our better half…we’re going to have to try. Speaking from true experience, here are 3 things we can do, as men, to let ourselves be vulnerable once again.
1. Be Aware And Open About How Fragile You Are.
That’s not to say that you need to spill your heart on the first date, and tell the poor girl every tragic thing that’s happened which made you feel broken. I’m simply saying that once you establish a foundation, and start to feel the chemistry shift into what’s going to become a real relationship, you need to be honest and self-aware.
Don’t try that machismo bullshit. Let her know you might be over sensitive to some things. Let her know if you may need extra reassurance, or a little more understanding than most. There’s nothing that is truly more appealing to a woman than a guy who isn’t afraid to be open, who understands himself, and is willing to let her in.
It won’t be easy, but it’s necessary. As men, we’re hardwired from a young age to show how strong we are, but it’s just as important to show vulnerability in this case. Moderation gentlemen. Find the balance.
2. Know That If She’s Willing To Listen, You Need To Talk.
I know that most of us are not strangers to bottling things up. Compartmentalizing everything, tucking all the hurt and pain in a neat little box, and stuffing it somewhere deep inside a crevice of the heart. Here’s the thing, that box has to open sometimes. It’s not big enough to keep putting stuff in, and life is going to keep hurting you at times.
How often have you wished you had someone to talk to, maybe on the lonely nights as you dwell on the past and the problems? Women, for the most part, are fantastic listeners and have very sympathetic ears.
If she cares about you, she’ll want to know what’s in the box.
Even if it’s a ton of personal tragedies that hurt to speak on, bad enough that it makes your existence seem like a shitty LifeTime Movie. She needs to know what makes you who you are. She needs to know what defines you. Or more importantly, what you’re trying to not let define you. Not only will it be therapeutic for you, it’ll give her a chance to know what would hurt you the most, and you can bet your ass she’ll be careful to not do these things to you. If she truly cares, let her prove that someone can love you properly. It’s not fair to keep it all inside, and have her walking on eggshells without even realizing it.
3. Embrace Her Problems Too.
Yea, you might feel broken, but I guarantee her life hasn’t been all sunshine and rainbows (I really do love that Rocky quote). Ask her, let her tell you about what she’s been through, and let your pain merge together. You might be surprised; even if the circumstances were vastly different there might be the same underlying issue (trust, insecurity, fear of betrayal, etc). You’ll gain a better understanding of her and maybe, just maybe, you’ll start to feel better knowing this person has felt some of the same terrible feelings you have. Let her inner demons play with yours, and take it all on together.