When I was younger, my boyfriends would always tell me I was mean. I was mean because I spoke my mind when they did something that hurt me, or treated me in a way that I didn’t want to be treated. I was mean because when they didn’t respect me, I left.
Over time these words and those of society taught me to be nice. To smile through my hurt. To allow myself to be treated badly. I married a wonderful man, but no matter how wonderful he was, he couldn’t See me. He couldn’t See me because I had hidden myself away from the World. He couldn’t Hear me because I had forgot what my own voice sounded like. How can I expect someone to respect me, when I don’t respect myself? Part of the reason my marriage failed was because I gave up everything to make it work. You can’t have a functioning relationship when only one party exists.
As I look back, I see how many times I have failed myself by catering to the insecurities of others. Women telling me I can’t wear a dress because I will look too good, ‘and you know how his wife gets when he looks at you’.
I’m sorry, when did your husbands wandering eye become my problem?
The second I chose to wear a different dress, that’s when. You didn’t put that on me, I took it from you.
The only abusive relationship you have ever, or will ever be in, is with yourself.
I just spent a month in Argentina with some of the most beautiful women I know, learning to love myself again. Learning to love those pieces of me that are “mean”. Learning to embrace them. Because setting boundaries is not mean.
Setting boundaries is the most Loving thing you can do to someone.