I’ve learned my most valuable lesson in life by spending a huge chunk of it with a man who was all sorts of wrong for me. It took a while to become aware of this, but today, I’m nothing if not thankful.
Circa 5 years back, I was a shell of the woman I am today. My self-esteem was at an all-time low and my standards had embarrassingly plunged. I didn’t think I was a catch, to be honest, so when a guy looked at me for longer than three seconds, I felt flattered.
It’s shameful for me to reminisce about this now, but it’s important to be self-aware in order to grow from your shortcomings and misconceptions – in order to become the person you’re capable of being.
And back then, I didn’t think I was meant to be much. I wasn’t in a good place, mentally or emotionally. I was going through a dark phase and nothing was going in my favor.
So, it should come as no surprise that the man I chose to spend my time with was somebody who was completely wrong for me. Somebody who made me go through hell and back in order to shake me to my core and make me see how little I thought I deserved.
This man saw me at my weakest and decided to take advantage of a girl he knew wouldn’t say no. He didn’t do any physical harm – just to be clear – but his abuse was emotional, and it shattered me almost beyond repair.
It sucks that I let anyone come so close to me when I was at my most fragile, but back then, I didn’t know any better. I felt like any attention was better than none.
I was switching from one shitty job to another, I was new in the city and had one friend. I wasn’t on the best terms with my folks, and I didn’t really have anyone to turn to.
So when this guy came on to me at a bar I frequented every night, I felt a glimmer of hope and a little voice inside me screamed from excitement so hard, that it was almost like it was the first time a guy actually liked me.
He seemed okay at first, so I indulged him and we kept talking throughout the evening.
He was a regular at the bar, so I had no choice but to see him every night, and going on a date with him just felt like the smart thing to do. If I said no, I’d just keep seeing him regardless and it would’ve been so awkward… so I made myself like him.
We started seeing each other. And with time I actually started to really like him.
He was thoughtful, kind, and seemed to really care about me at first. And that hadn’t happened in a long, long time, so I was slowly becoming more and more hooked on the feeling.
But what I didn’t know was that it was his plan all along. He apparently had a habit of catching young, weak, and fragile women off guard, winning them over with his fake words. Once they were in his web, he’d use them to feed his inflated ego.
I found out about his pattern of behaviour long after I was done with him, but it all suddenly made so much sense.
I was nothing but a punching bag to him. When he’d feel like shit, he’d use me to shift the blame on me and make himself feel better.
When he felt like it, he’d just yell at me for no reason to get it all out of his system and then be on his best behaviour with his buddies.
Nobody really knew what he was like behind closed doors except for me and a few of his previous girlfriends who confided in me and told me all about their experiences once I was finally out of his life.
I was treated like shit, my feelings were never important, and I had to check in with him before I left the house. He was a major control freak who never let me be myself and caused me so much fear and hurt to actually stand up for myself.
It was an all-time low for me and it really got me thinking…
Was this the life I wanted for myself? Was this the man I was going to let invade my life and make me so miserable? If I didn’t say anything right then and there, I never would’ve found the courage to do so.
So I decided that enough was enough. Who the hell did he think he was? Why did he think he had the right to put me down and treat me like shit for the sake of feeling like a real man?
Once I realized all of this, it became so easy telling him exactly how I felt and getting the fuck out of there. I was not going to let him ruin my life and my future. I was so much better than that.
And that’s how I finally found my power again. I felt like the freaking queen of the world.
I left and I never looked back. It was a shit-storm of emotions and getting over it was a lengthy process, but it was one I needed to go through in order to realize that I was never going to let a man control any part of me anymore!
Not today, not ever. And it felt so damn good. We as women face so many obstacles in life just because of our gender, so I decided to take back my life and show the man who’s really in charge!
All it takes is that little voice inside you telling you to go for it, and once you find the courage to let that voice be heard, you are never going to want to be quiet again!
That was my lesson. And boy am I glad I went through all that. Because that’s what needed to happen to shape me into the woman I am today – and this woman takes no more shit from no man!
I am in control of my life, my love, and my future. Any man who has a problem with that can stand in line. I simply don’t have time for you anymore! And it feels so damn good to finally be able to say that.