I was so afraid of losing my boyfriend that I ended up changing who I was, which ironically did end the relationship. Looking back, the saddest thing wasn’t that the relationship ended, but that I sacrificed my true self. Here’s what happened:
I put on a front.
It was easy to be fun-loving and carefree when we met and started dating. There were no relationship issues or drama; everything was light and easy. But as time went on, I started to battle to be this easygoing person because things got real — and terrifying.
I feared the guy was going to change.
After a few weeks of dating, I started to feel real things for him. That made me worry that he would dump me and break my heart. It made me start to get anxious. I was losing my light, fun self really quickly because of my worries.
I allowed myself to be consumed by stress.
I started to worry all the time that he would cheat on me or hurt me. There was something “off” and I didn’t know if it was my paranoia or gut instinct. My stress showed and it probably put him off me. One day he asked “Where’s the fun girl I was dating?” Ouch. But he was right.
That fun girl wasn’t completely real.
She was part of the honeymoon phase. But I didn’t know who to be when that phase ended. I was so struck down with worries that the relationship would end and I’d lose the guy I loved that it made me the complete opposite of my usual self.
I became clingy.
I made it clear that I was really into him, and I became needy. When he was out, I’d double text if I didn’t get a reply. I got upset if he wasn’t there when I needed him. He was slipping further out of reach and I was the one to blame. I was pushing him away.
I was coming off desperate.
There was one night where we got into a big argument it because he hadn’t been in touch for two days and I was pissed off with him. Yes, he’d been wrong, but it had been stupid to go about the situation in this way. It just made me seem so desperate for his love, which I sadly was. I felt pathetic.
I tried too hard.
Later, I realized why I’d lost it so much. I’d invested so much in the relationship — I’d given so much of my love and support that I felt I had so much to lose. But I didn’t realize I’d lost myself in the process. That wasn’t worth his — or anyone’s — love.
I was the only one making an effort.
After a while, I’d become so preoccupied with trying to be the best girlfriend in the world that I hadn’t stopped to notice that he wasn’t trying to be the best boyfriend. He was just being who he was. I was the one running circles around him, trying to do things that would bring us closer. I was a one-woman show fueled by fear. It was crazy.
I didn’t feel I deserved his love.
I was trying so hard to win the Best Girlfriend Of The Year award because I felt like I had to be loved for what I did, as though who I was just wasn’t enough. That’s sad, but it’s exactly how I felt. I didn’t feel like I deserved love so I had to fight for it.
I had to stop.
Enough was enough! I was embarrassed about how I’d come on so strongly, so I decided it was time to focus on who I was. I had to figure out if I was that fun, carefree woman or not. I realized that she was only part of who I am. I’d shut off the other parts of me out of fear of being rejected, but that’s BS. I decided that in future I had to show the world who I was and be loved or rejected for it, but at least I’d be living honestly.
I quit caring so much.
I’d cared too much about this guy’s needs and opinions of me. Screw that. I had to be who I was and care about myself more than a man. I’d totally ignored what was important for me to be happy because I was so worried about him. I wouldn’t do that crap again.
I figured out what I needed to achieve a happy relationship.
I knew that I was the one who had stood in the way of my own happiness. I’d tried to be something I wasn’t in order to please my ex, and that had only served to paint me in unflattering colors and sink the relationship. By understanding what I’d done, I was free to work on myself and then, only then, could I have a healthy relationship — which did happen for me in the end.
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