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The Problem With Modern Love Is That It Makes You Feel So Replaceable

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Twenty20 / @JedTuazon

It’s not even about love or heartbreak anymore. It’s not about commitment or betrayal anymore. It’s not about love or lust or infatuation. The crazy thing about modern love is that it makes everyone feel so replaceable. So forgettable. So disposable.

And I think that’s the sad part. That’s the heartbreaking part.

That’s why we mourn the endings of relationships we were never even in. That’s why we feel sick when someone we like suddenly stops talking to us or ‘ghosts’ us. That’s why it feels like heartbreak even though we weren’t in love.

It’s the idea that someone found us and thought were special then decided to throw us away, they decided to replace us making us feel like we’re not as special as we thought we were and that stirs a certain insecurity in people. It shakes their confidence. It distorts their outlook on love.

Because no matter how strong or confident you are, you will still ask yourself why they couldn’t give you a chance? What made them change their mind? What pushed them away? Why they decided to let you go? 

And even when you get your closure, sometimes it doesn’t help, sometimes it’s a bunch of lies to make you feel better, sometimes it’s not genuine and most of the time it’s not the truth, because no one will tell you it was you. No one will tell you you’re not the one. They will say it was them, they’re not ready, they’re confused, they think you deserve better but at the end of the day it doesn’t change the fact that they didn’t choose you. They didn’t look at you and say that’s someone I want to get to know because I’d be a fool if I didn’t. They weren’t afraid of losing you. They looked at you and thought that you were replaceable. That they’ll be able to easily forget you and replace you with someone else.

And I think that’s why modern dating is so hard and that’s why millennials are struggling to find true love and maybe that’s why they settle for almost relationships, because they’d rather have something than nothing at all. They’d rather have a few texts and some snaps instead of nothing, they’d rather have someone who is almost there than be completely alone. They’d rather feel wanted occasionally than not wanted at all. They’d rather know that at least they’re on someone’s mind somehow instead of knowing for sure no one is thinking about them.

No one wants to feel replaceable, no one wants to feel like they weren’t good enough. And even if you train yourself not to think this way, that it wasn’t meant to be, that it wasn’t you, that it was the whole situation because it takes two to tango, it still hurts when you see your replacement. It still hurts to see a moment you dreamed of and wanted so badly get taken away from you and given to someone else. It hurts.

But the only thing that keeps us going is the hope that one day, we will find someone who will find us irreplaceable. One day, we will find the person who proves to us that we hold a special place that will never be replaced by anyone else. One day, we will be someone’s home and they will be ours. TC mark

Rania Naim is a poet and author of the new book All The Words I Should Have Said, available here.

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