25 Lessons I Learned From My Past Relationships

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The people we love who leave us (or who we leave) often give us a clearer view of ourselves, whether we acknowledge it or not.

The High School Sweetheart

The only thing teenage dates do is pluck the innocence from your breast. In high school reputation is everything. I stopped being a virgin long before I first had sex – the second you bragged to our Catholic school you had me even when we both know you barely held my hand, even when I slapped you when you tried. Still, your friends congratulated you while mine avoided me all week.

1. Virginity is a social construct. It doesn’t exist outside teenage boys’ high-fives and teenage girls’ sanctimonious sneers. Still, it can be taken from you. Still, even when you say no. Losing your virginity often does not involve two bodies making contact. Usually all it takes is a willing ear and a mouth dripping gossip.

2. When gossip arrives, people will believe what they want. This is when you’ll realize who your true friends are and who have been waiting to celebrate your misfortune. Fact: No one gives a damn about anyone unless you are able to provide them some source of entertainment.

3. I am not what people believe me to be. I am not the words people say about me.

The Long-Term College Relationship

Is five years enough to know someone? Is ten? No matter how much we are alike doesn’t mean we aren’t different. A punch in the face doesn’t say, “I want you.” A knife to the throat doesn’t say, “Stay.” A hug doesn’t say, “Nobody else except me will ever love a psycho like you.” Now we can barely make eye contact without flinching and my stomach never feels empty even when it’s not full. What I mean to say is I shouldn’t have been with you just because everyone else begged me to. What I mean to say is

4. Some friendships are better left alone. Girls and boys don’t have to kiss. You don’t have to be in a relationship simply because you’re socially expected to.

4.5 (Fact: When a boy says “If you really love me, let’s have sex” – leave. When a boy kills a part of you to preserve a part of himself – LEAVE. Do not remain long enough to find out why you should never have been in this situation)

5. Pistachio is an exquisite fucking ice cream flavor.

6. Even the people we love can be cruel towards us. And sometimes love sounds like a gunshot in a locked room. It shouldn’t be this violent.

7. Time doesn’t heal all wounds. People are capable of feeling guilty for something they didn’t do and shameful acceptance for something they didn’t deserve, despite having been proven otherwise.

8. Nobody else is capable of loving me as honestly as I can myself.

9. You’re wrong. Somebody else will love me, somebody else does.

The Soulmate

Love has no rules. It twists and it bends and it spools forward until it resembles something we’re almost familiar with. If people were poetry, we would be how it’d look like. You were standing on a summit breathing in the clouds while my feet never left the ground. I can never again look at dust motes floating in front of a sunny windowsill without meaning. Nevertheless I will be forever grateful we met.

10. Every person we’ve loved unconsciously gave us a piece of our personality. We are the people who leave us.

11. Saltwater heals all wounds. Especially when there’s surfing involved.

12. Unless when ordering food, it is in our best interest to wait for no one.

13. Fact: Most times you won’t end up with your soulmate and that’s okay. If you’re lucky enough to find them, be grateful for the opportunity and for finally being able to understand what a real connection is.

14. Love ain’t never enough and people are not homes. Nobody will protect you and everyone will eventually disappoint you. Accept this. Allow emotions to happen to you for there is no shortcut to moving on. It will take months (sometimes years) and will involve a lot of conscious effort. Though, at this very second, your pain seems too unbearable, Fact: you will get through it, eventually, no matter how dumb this sounds.

15. Sometimes you have to run away to feel at home again.

The One That Got Away

You would hear grenades exploding on our pillow every night. But baby, I am not your bomb-shelter. I’ve got enough baggage of my own to carry, too busy being screwed up to have time to tend to other people’s psychological needs. Why does it seem as though the most damaged people are the ones most competent at loving?

16. The one that got away will eventually come back. When he knocks, don’t open the door. It was shut for a reason.

“An end is an end… We broke for a reason. And we don’t need a low-budget part-two.” – Sade Andria Zabala, Starbucks

17. Shakshuka is a healthy, easy, delicious dish, and in war Israelis think they’re right, Palestinians think they’re right, and the unaffected people commenting on Facebook think they’re right. Lives are lost, the grenades keep coming, and you and your friends stop mid-laugh when you talk about it. No one wins.

18. Drugs exist because of escapism and it tastes like spun sugar dipped in bile. It was not the horror stories my mother told me about.

18.5 (Also, a grinder is essential for a compact joint)

19. It is possible to love two people simultaneously.

20. You gotta go through shit before you discover what gold feels like.

21. Fact: I am not as bad as other people made me out to be.

The Rebound

How cold have I become to have toyed with you for months without breaking sweat? You played the game and normally I would’ve backed off, yet there I was crocodile-tears streaming knowing you thought I was falling for your fuck boy B.S. You were an excuse to write poetry and damn were they good.How I enjoyed watching you squirm. Oh, did you just know this now? Oops.

22. I was so used to checking for monsters under my bed, I never realized they were sleeping beside me.

I have become my own person now. Even when I have you in bed, I have learned to sleep by myself.

23. Two things can make people fall in love with you: great sex and an even greater taste in music.

24. I can cook! Jesus, god, this is a miracle.

25. I am a reckless, selfish, wonderful piece of crap and I love me. There is both good and bad in all of us. Embrace the bad, improve the good. And no matter what others tell you or make you feel, Fact: you are worthy of love and you WILL be loved, again and again and again. TC mark

I asked women to be honest about their Instagram photos

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