We’ve all experienced it. Irrespective of our orientation, whether Straight, bi, gay or queer. It hurts every time. Like someone has punched you in the gut and left you in a place that’s dark and cold. The first thing that surfaces is that you aren’t good enough, that you aren’t worthy enough. Self doubts creeps in and gnaws at every tissue on your bones. Do I deserve love, affection, beauty and grace? Almost instantly, the need for protection kicks in and you do anything (everything!) to numb the pain. Buckets of ice cream, romantic comedies, a box of tissues, fried food, chips (my favorite) and long conversations with your best friends who never fail to tell you that it’s their loss. Not yours. But you don’t believe it. In that moment, you can’t believe it even if you try. Even though you try not to, you can’t help but play the, ‘I got dumped’ tape in your head over and over again.
All this happens as a consequence of a break-up, the person you felt connected to chose to walk away. To reject all that you had to offer. Of course, at that point, the ‘all you had to offer’ seems too little and insignificant anyway.
Lately, the more I think about it, the more I realise that the truth isn’t that we aren’t worthy enough. The truth is that the other person doesn’t want to lean in. Lean in to the discomfort that comes from being truly vulnerable with you. The discomfort that comes from saying what’s really in your heart and not worry about your partner choosing to use that against you at one point or another. To be emotionally vulnerable and available takes a great amount of strength. Or perhaps constantly protecting yourself from opening up and talking about who you really are. The messy bits that aren’t the least bit charming but as much a part of you as everything else. What’s worse is, when they aren’t the least bit interested in knowing you but only interested in fucking you.
But no one can make them see this. We can’t make them want what we want for us. To lean in and connect deeply. To understand the true bonds of life, Value relationships and treasure love. This lack of connection is one of the reasons it’s not easy (mostly for women) to connect to their partners physically. A lot of the physical connection surfaces from a sense of intimacy you share with your partner. In order to have that sense of intimacy, it’s important to trust. Trust comes from talking about what makes you uncomfortable and vulnerable. Through conversations where one opens up and is not scared of their insecurities and fears. In a way, you get past that sense of discomfort when your partner tells you that he accepts you for who you are and is willing to be patient with you.
Isn’t that what we are looking for? To be accepted for who we are. To be loved for our true selves. To not be compelled to put on a mask but be nascent and pure.
In retrospect, rejection also tells us that all the people who let us go weren’t really meant to be in our lives anyway. They walked into our lives to help us realise what we truly want and have the courage to ask for it. And when they tell us that they can’t give us more and walk away, we don’t question our need for love and warmth. Instead, wait for someone who is willing to give and receive. Because, believe it or not, receiving from someone is as hard as giving. But it’s so worth it. You are worth it.