I loved the same man for twelve years and still do love him. I was deeply, whole-heartily in love with him for probably more than half of those years. I’m often asked what happened between us because most people we knew would have never seen our divorce coming. Well it isn’t like I’m going to give people a play-by-play on every single thing that occurred. Honestly, I just woke up one morning and everything was different. I had finally had enough of everything and was tired of feeling like I did. For the first time in my life I had to learn to put myself first. It meant learning to love myself more than I loved him and slowly I have.
I had built my entire life around him, always giving more and more of myself until I was just completely gone. I wish I would have known so much more then, that I could have seen into the future or something. The biggest thing I learned and took away was that love is simply not enough, it just isn’t. As unromantic as it sounds, it is the cold-hearted truth of the matter. We don’t live in the movies and love doesn’t solve all of life’s problems, it’s not a fix all. Gosh, I wish it was because things would be so much simpler.
Truthfully, sometimes love makes us do stupid things. It’s strange because we often will not tolerate certain behavior from any other person in our life other than, from our partner. Oddly enough, you can’t appreciate what that means until you have lived or experienced it. Sometimes when you fall deeply in love, you lose yourself. That is what happened to me because my life was him. I didn’t realize nor could I understand the damage I was doing to myself. Then one day it just changed and I was done with living and feeling that way. I think I was more upset with myself too because even though I knew better, I still done it. I had to take responsibility too, when everything was said and done with, it was just as much my fault. I had accepted everything for so long, that I no longer even knew what the root problems were anymore. Everything had just grew into more; more anxiety, depression, lack of self-esteem, arguments, bickering, and loneliness.
There was a time when he was my best friend and we shared everything together. We appreciated and valued each other and what we had both experienced at a young age. We were each others support systems, best friends and lovers. We put each other first and considered one another. That all changed when I got pregnant with our first child; who died not long after he was born. Throughout that entire experience it changed us and our relationship. We drifted further and further apart over time. What I continued to learn was that even though I loved him, everything was different, our connection and love had all changed.
I started to not only understand, but see how actions speak louder than words. One of the major things for me in a relationship is unavailability and dependability. (As well as, everything in my link below) Basically, someone I’m in a relationship with not being available and dependable in a time of need. Love isn’t a fix all solution and it doesn’t replace respect, humility, loyalty, appreciation or values. Love doesn’t make two people compatible. Love require sacrifices, but at what cost? Love doesn’t mean someone is going be able to be the right person for you that you need them to be. There is no guarantee that person will be able to meet and support ones emotional and physical needs. Love is not a guarantee to and for anything.
A healthy relationship requires give and take. It requires work! http://seeingtheoutside.com/2016/01/23/things-that-make-a-lasting-impression-in-relationships/
The fact of the matter is, just because you are “in love” with someone doesn’t make it a healthy relationship. It doesn’t mean that resentfulness and distance can’t occur between two people who care for each other. That hope, faith and love for someone can’t diminish over time. Not only is a healthy relationship work, but it is understanding that both people have to show and put in the effort required to make it last. Both people have to care enough to acknowledge things , to communicate honestly and express expectations with each other. It is speaking more than faulty words and failed promises that are never put into actions. Both people have to want the relationship to last through every single stage and have the willingness to work together throughout its lifespan.
I look at the man I once called my husband, whom I once loved with all my heart and I see so much disappointment and heartache. I see a man who was my best friend that grew into another man; just as I had grown into a different woman while we were married. I still have love, respect and compassion for him. I think he is a good man and a wonderful father, but it doesn’t change anything. I think if there was a way to go back and change things; I’m sure we would both do a few things differently. I believe we both disappointed, hurt and scarred each other’s hearts. Even though we truly loved and cared for each other it didn’t stop the damage from being done, even if by mistake. Love doesn’t replace life or the suffering you experience through the years. You see the thing is, that no matter how much we loved each other, love was not strong enough to conquer it all for us.
Even though we are no longer together he will always hold a dear place in my heart and be the father of my children. I will always have a deep amount of compassion, loyalty and appreciation for him. He will be the only man (the first and the last) that I will have ever loved more than myself. I will never again lose myself in a relationship or marriage. I will forever be grateful to him for my children which are both a miracles. I’m beyond thankful that even though we didn’t survive our marriage together; that at least we manage to co-parent our children together in a healthy relationship for them. That we are able to put aside our differences, forgive each other and put our children’s needs first.
To me a good relationship needs love and so much more…
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