I Dated Him Because I Thought He Was Better Than Nothing But I Was Wrong

They say that no relationship is a waste of time but I disagree. Sure, you might learn something about yourself (and others) while dating the wrong person, but does that make the years of drama and uncertainty worth it? I don’t think so! I stayed with my ex because he was better than nothing and I seriously regret it.

Our conversations lacked depth. Not to be rude but I think I lost brain cells during that relationship. We didn’t really talk about anything! Our conversations centered around work, the commute to work, the commute leaving work, and whether or not we had dinner plans. We never discussed politics, religion, or what the Kardashians were up to.

I didn’t know how to be single. Being in a relationship not only made me forget what it was like to be single but it made me scared to death of being single. I saw my friends struggling to find dates and drinking (a little too much) to mask the disappointment they felt about being on their own. It seemed horrible and I didn’t want that.

He never really understood me. To be fair, I think he tried really hard to understand me in the beginning but there’s really only so much someone can do when they’re your polar opposite. Our background was too different. The way we saw and understood the world didn’t align and unfortunately, we didn’t truly respect each other’s thoughts and feelings. We weren’t mean to one another or anything, we were just never in sync.

I loved his friends and family more than him. The best and worst part of a relationship is getting to know your partner’s family and friends. He had the best parents and the nicest friends! I liked them so much that I didn’t want to break up with them. I wanted them in my life forever. I could have never spoken to him again and been OK, but the thought of losing his nearest and dearest sucked.

I had constant doubts about our relationship. I didn’t doubt whether or not he’d be a great husband—I knew he would be. My ex-boyfriend was considerate, patient, and determined. My doubts were whether or not he’d make me happy in the long run. He didn’t understand my jokes and I didn’t really care about him the way I knew I should care about a forever partner, so I knew something was seriously wrong.

He let me be me, which made it easy to stay. I don’t know if it was because he loved me a lot or because he was just the kind of guy that didn’t sweat the small stuff. Whatever the reason, he let me be me myself 100%. I never felt judged or like I wasn’t enough. I could say what I wanted to say and do what I wanted to do with absolutely no fear. It was a rare situation, I know. That’s partially why it took so long to leave. He made me feel comfortable. It was like I was in a relationship with a roommate I’d been living with for decades. I never thought I’d find someone else who made me feel so OK with myself.

We stopped being curious about each other. We stopped asking each other questions. To be honest, I’m not sure if we ever really started. I never felt that curiosity people typically feel to learn more about their partner. I didn’t care. As messed up as it sounds, I wasn’t curious about him. I guess it was because I always knew he wasn’t “The One.”

My excuses weren’t legit. He wanted to move in together and get engaged. My excuse? He was messy and I was afraid his mess would make me hate him. I thought it was a valid excuse at the time but looking back, it’s pretty ridiculous. If I really loved him and wanted to be with him, I wouldn’t have cared if he was messy. Don’t get me wrong, I hate clothes on the floor, but clothes can easily be picked up and put away.

I loved our time apart. My ex-boyfriend traveled a lot for work and I honestly loved watching him leave. I enjoyed my space whenever he was gone and I took those days to focus on myself. It was weird, but I was more of a homebody when my boyfriend was in town than I was when he was gone. I spent more time with my friends and family. I was a different person during his absence—a better person.

Sex was the only time we connected. There’s a false sense of intimacy whenever you share your personal space with someone. I felt connected to him when we had sex, and that connection is what kept me in the relationship for so long (especially considering we had sex basically every day). It wasn’t even like we were crazy experimental or out of the box in any way. We didn’t need to be. The physical act was enough for me to feel connected and content.

Everyone thought we were perfect together. Contrary to what this article might suggest, I’m not a complainer—or at least I’m not vocal with my complaints. I never told my friends how unsure I was about my relationship. I just put on a happy face and carried on. It wasn’t shocking that they thought we were #relationshipgoals. They assumed I was happy but I really wasn’t.

I missed out on a lot. There were people I wanted to get to know while I was dating him. Even though I didn’t like the idea of being single, I did like the idea of spending time with guys I was interested in. (I know that doesn’t make a ton of sense.) There were times when I wanted to get all dressed up and go on a date with someone new for the first time—and I had offers too! I just didn’t accept them. I was in a committed relationship and since I’m not a cheater, I missed out. A big part of me regrets saying no all those times!

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