Trust yourself enough to walk away. You deserve better. He will cheat again. He's lying.
Again, trust yourself.
That's the mantra. We all need to have faith in ourselves and know that we know our own boundaries. We have a gut feeling for a reason. It's a fight or flight instinct. What people don't realise is that the only reason we've survived this long on this stupid earth is by trusting that!
The right guy – who will treat you the way you deserve – is out there for you. There's no reason you should pressure yourself or push for what you aren't ready for. Don't worry about what other people are doing around you – they don't matter. Seriously, it's your life that you need to live – not theirs. You can't judge your success on their terms, or constantly be comparing yourself to them, because then you can never win. Or feel satisfied. That will be because you are living your life by other people's timelines and stressing yourself needlessly over something over which you have little control.
Emotions and the heart are liable at any given moment in time to do whatever the hell they want. Therefore, it stands to reason that we are sort of wasting our time trying to fit into someone else's template.
Don't settle for less than the best.
Try not to have heart eyes for everyone that walks into a bar. They don't all have your vested interest in heart, and they're rarely looking for the same things you are. Timing is everything. Confidence is gold dust. But you ultimately can't control everything in your life, and there will be aspects that don't match up to what you think you should be doing. That's normal, but you can't beat yourself up for it. Relationships by definition are two-way streets, you can't go alone. Even if you're ready for commitment, you still need a willing and able partner to go the distance with, to whom you are attracted and have common interests. At the moment it may seem out of reach, but you can have that.
You don't need to sacrifice everything in a relationship just to get the bare minimum. Or to meet up to someone else's standards.
There's nothing wrong with you, either.
People are constantly worried about whether they are behind or ahead in the cosmic game of life markers that we are constantly surrounded by in the media. You can't go three paces without a Facebook engagement announcement or honeymoon insta spree.
We need to be better at recognising that we deserve better than what we sometimes get. Often, we might be investing more of ourselves and putting our time on the line for a relationship that isn't being reciprocated in the same way. Also, we often feel guilt for thinking about stepping away from such relationships, as though we are withdrawing a service that we 'owe' another person. We don't owe people anything in this world, not inherently. Not if they're not giving us the same in return, it's just not emotionally sustainable. You end up expending and exhausting yourself and having nothing left for yourself.
Therefore, we need to recognise and relearn our power to say 'no' and mean it.
Or to tell the people around us what we need when we need it. We don't need to become dictators or totalitarians to do this or to control the relationship, we just need to have an active and equal part in it. If we want to know where the relationship is headed, that's perfectly within our rights. Should your partner not be on the same page as you, that's fine – but that's the signal to leave the relationship. If you explicitly do not have a future there, then you're both wasting each other's time and effort, and making things harder for yourself in the long term.
Furthermore, you only get one life.
Yes, I know that sounds like something that would be on a poster in your high school guidance counsellor's office, but am I wrong? You need to be willing to fall flat on your face in this world to reap the rewards of your endeavours. If you're playing it safe and comfortable in relationships where you aren't happy, you're only wasting your time and playing yourself.
The long and short of it? Cheaters are the biggest 'no-no'. There's a lot I'm willing to forgive in a relationship, but not that breach of trust. Nope. Don't believe me?
You're minding your own business, stupidly in love with Harry from down the road. He bought you flowers last week and always cooks for you. Life is good and you consider yourself safe and sound – it never even crosses your mind that he might not have been faithful.
Stop. Listen. He will do it again. It's not right. That's literally it – it's as simple as that.
You are so valuable to this world – don't let a toxic relationship convince you that you're trapped or worthless.
As Taylor Swift said this year – step into the daylight and let it go.
We'll all be waiting for you with open arms.