I must apologize in advance for the pain he’s about to cause you. Although I don’t owe you an explanation or particularly like you for obvious reasons — woman to woman I still empathize for you.
I see the happiness in your smile and hope in your eyes. It’s all so familiar, as the face he’s kissing and heart he’s holding was once mine. He told me he’d never felt this way and wanted to spend the rest of his life with me. We fell in love. He made promises and we planned for forever. Our family and friends were ecstatic — the wedding was in the near future.
But we never made it. I know it broke your heart when you learned how hurt he’s been in previous relationships, as all of his ex’s were “crazy, needy, and emotionally unavailable.” You tell yourself you’re different than the women who came before you and that you’re the one. And although he’s had a turbulent romantic past- this time things will work out. I’m here to tell you it won’t.
Listen to that voice inside, the one that showed you the red flags in the beginning. You were so quick to put them away; you were intoxicated and blinded by the rose colored lenses you had on. I know you’ve been waiting for a man like him a long time, but deep down, your heart knows the reality of what this is and what this is not. The truth is, you’ve fallen in love with someone you don’t truly know. Patterns and people like him don’t suddenly change- wanting to be in a healthy relationship and being able to do so, are very different things. Soon, you’ll be taken down from the pedestal and placed on the list of “crazy” ex girlfriends. It’s hard to accept this man will not turn out to be what you imagined. I know everything seems perfect, but be ready for the day he tells you his feelings have changed. And when he decides to leave, don’t try to stop him- it will only be futile. Keep your dignity intact and carry yourself with grace. Just know this is not about you. You did nothing wrong. I promise.
Try to look past his charm, success, and good looks. These are only masks that protect and hide who he truly is. He’s emotionally unhealthy, far more than you can possibly imagine. The layers of pain and darkness are beyond your fixing, and it’s not your place to save him. He’s a broken man with a damaged soul.
Even so, I know you’ll be waiting for him to come back, call or even text. You’ll start to think you’ve lost your mind and wonder if the relationship even really happened; it will seem as if the beautiful things he did and said was only a part of you imagination.
When the initial shock wears off, you will have hard days ahead. At moments it will feel like you’re dying from a broken heart. Those moments will pass. I don’t know how or when, but one day you’ll wake up and see a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel; and it will hurt a little less. In a few weeks you’ll find out he’s moved on to another girl — it will knock you down hard and your heart will rip open again. It will set you back, but only temporarily. You’ll brush yourself off, wipe your tears and tread forward.
One year has passed since the day he came home and told me he didn’t love me anymore- and I’ll be honest, my heart still aches every now and then. There are times I still ask myself why — I am then reminded he was coming from a place of fear and pain; hurt people simply hurt other people. My anger and rage then slowly turns into compassion and I try to find forgiveness. I realize how helpless and lonely he is, and will forever be. I know you love him and are committed. You trust he wouldn’t throw around powerful words and actions so carelessly. You believed in him and what the two of you had. Try to understand he’s scared and unable to fully open his heart. He doesn’t mean to hurt you; he just can’t hold on to a healthy partnership. And as someone once told me, “red flags aren’t projects.” He needs to heal through his own journey, in his own way, on his own time.
You’ll question why life did this to you, and what you did to deserve this. I’ve learned the hard way that these disruptions are in fact blessings and opportunities for growth. Though it seems brutal at times, it’s the universe’s way of grabbing your attention, trying to teach you something you’ve missed along the way. A relationship that emotionally violates you will be sure to shake you and wake you up- trust me when I say you’ll come out the other end stronger and wiser. This letter is not intended to create further pain. I don’t expect you to believe or accept anything I’ve said. You probably think I’m just a bitter, jealous ex girlfriend — I don’t blame you, I would probably think the same. I just remember having so many questions and desperately wanting to understand why my world turned upside down. No one could give me answers, not even him. I carried so much shame, guilt and regret- thinking I ruined my only chance at happiness. I wish someone could have given me this letter back then — it would have offered my heart some comfort and saved me some tears.
You seem like a kind, sweet girl who just wants to be loved. You will find it one day, it just won’t be with him. Instead, a healthier man will appear and you will feel emotionally safe. He will be present and available to you.
It’s difficult to imagine how resilient our hearts can be after the battles they’ve gone through and the scars that remain. To create space for love, taking the risk of vulnerability and possibly getting hurt, requires courage and strength. Though it might take some time, when love finds you again, you will be brave and ready — and it will be beautiful.
I wish you all the good things I wish for myself. Happiness will find you soon. But in the meantime, stay strong and be gentle with your heart. It will get better — one day.