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Minor set backs (we’re all good though)

A while ago I decided to write a post about relationship break up levels, how one person will start at level 10 and the other will be clawing themselves up from the lowest of lows and it’s all a process?

Well. Recently I’ve been thinking about how much easier life would be if that process was linear. But it turns out it isn’t.

You want to know why you cried over them today but yesterday you were excited to find someone new? Because falling out of love isn’t linear and as much as we’re taught how to love, we’re never taught how to stop.

We’re raised around the idea of once you fall in love it sticks, there’s no need to learn how to unlove someone. You never get taught to prepare yourself for someone walking out of your life when they were the ones who chose to be in it in the first place.

Why aren’t we taught how to walk away when we feel unappreciated, or how to stop loving someone who tells us they don’t want us? It isn’t an easy process. Your heart will always hold onto hope.

That’s why sometimes you don’t talk to them for weeks and then fall into a drunk slip up. But it’s ok, it happens. Own your s**t and move on.

You keep going back because your heart hasn’t yet caught up with your head and in most cases your head is the sensible bit, it’s the part of you that knows you’re better off without them. So when your heart does catch up you’ll be fine, but it’s a slow mother f***er. So please bear with it.

There’s a song I keep thinking of recently because there’s a line in it that goes like this “if you’re going to break my heart, do it right, don’t leave me holding on like the last time” I listen to it and I’m like, yeah you know what, if someone tells you they don’t want you, but they only partly mean it so basically, they’re saying it to push you away while they try to figure it out, how is that fair? You’re in or you’re out dumb ass. Because it isn’t helping the whole linear break up situation if you’re not sure that they’re sure, you know?

But it’s true and it’s another reason why our hearts hold onto people, because if someone hasn’t broken it properly then it just sits itself in limbo. Which is super annoying.

I don’t even know what classes as proper heartbreak either, is it being cheated on by the one person who was your whole world? Is it seeming them move on with someone you considered a friend? Or is it when you’re sat in front of the man you love and having to listen to him tell you that he doesn’t feel anything for you? All these possible heartbreak situations are pretty f***ed but is one more legit than the other? Like on a scale of having your heart broken, does one of these ending versions make the most sense when we think of what proper heartbreak is?

Because personally, I think all versions of a break up will hurt just the same. It doesn’t matter what scale of trauma they fall on, to you, it’s horrific.

So next time you pick your phone up and you’re about to message them, try to think what the outcome will be. Are you doing it just because you’re drunk, or because you want them back in some way, maybe it’s just because you like knowing you have access to them still? Whatever you want the outcome to be, just have it clear in your mind.

But whatever the way. Healing will never be linear, you’re allowed to be sad some days and happy the next. You’re allowed to cry because you miss them one minute and pick yourself up and go out on a date the next.

THERE ARE NO RULES. STOP BEATING YOURSELF UP!

P.S the song I mentioned can be found here for whoever wants to listen to it. Enjoy!

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It’s all about learning what you don’t want

Ah man, it sucks that relationship didn’t work out! I know you thought they were the one, but what did you learn from it? Yeah

What a tough question to answer when you’re grieving for someone who isn’t even dead.

What did you learn?

When a relationship breaks down and this doesn’t even just have to be a romantic one, you HAVE to walk away saying to yourself “well ok, next time I know from a process of elimination, here are the things I know I don’t want in my next person” rather than taking the approach of “here’s my super long list of tick boxes I want them to fill”.

Instead I think it’s better to add to a list of things we know we don’t want next time rather than sticking to a list of absolute must haves for our “perfect” partner (who won’t exist by the way because perfect is simply unattainable).

What have you realised you don’t want your forever person to be like, or what traits have you realised you don’t think match your own for whatever reason.

Here’s the benefits of finding your perfect match from a process of elimination rather than going off of a “must haves” list.

1. We might think we know exactly how we want our forever person to be in our minds, but when we experience it in real life it feels strangely different to our expectations.

2. Finding out what kind of person you want to be with from a process of elimination rather helps build you into who you are at the same time.

3. Until you’ve experienced what you don’t want, how will you REALLY know exactly what you do what with total certainty?

4. Creating a list of expectations for our perfect match to fill actually reflects more of what we’re missing from our own life than anything else, you want someone outgoing, confident and not scared of anything? Okay cool, but are you actually bringing that to the relationship yourself? Because if you’re not, how do you expect to attract someone like this?

5. As brutal as it sounds, getting your hands dirty will make you fully appreciate the final stop. So if I’m putting this in terms of dating, until you’ve dated some s**t heads, you’ll never fully appreciate the person you’re supposed to be with. See what I mean?

6. Dating is character building. Honestly it really is. You can’t expect someone who’s the embodiment of some list of “must haves” to show up without you putting in any effort. You have to get out there and experience some crappy relationships to realise what you ACTUALLY want because our wants from a relationship change as we get older.

So honestly. In learning what you don’t want. You’ll inadvertently learn what you do and that’s a far better way around of doing things because it sill help form you into the person that you are at the same time.

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Therapy session 1 – it’s a process

Sending yourself to therapy, does that make you crazy? Maybe it makes you attention seeking? Like you’re looking for a problem that maybe doesn’t even exist. You’re looking for something or someone to blame all your out of character actions on perhaps?

But your brain is an organ, and just like your liver or your heart it can get sick when it isn’t treated with care, right?

We know all about the things we should and shouldn’t eat, we know how much water to drink, we even know how many steps we should be doing a day and how many times a week we should be hitting the gym. So why do so many of us seem to falter when it comes to looking after out minds, like we don’t know how to care for that part of us or like asking for help from people to give it the care it needs we feel weak and damaged.

Would you call someone who’s constantly suffering from heart attacks that they’re crazy for trying to go to a professional for help? Doubtful. so maybe more of us should shut the f***k up when it comes to giving an opinion on someone and their need to give their minds some more care and attention.

You know what the sad fact is, the people who take themselves to therapy are in most part there to deal with the people in their lives who should be in therapy. Ironic really.

But anyway, how can I be a such a big advocate for something and be out here telling people around me that they’d benefit from going without actually trying it myself. Seemed hypocritical.

All I can say on a verdict on session one is this – we all have issues. Therapy actually takes a lot of mental strength. Most of us go into defence mode when someone points an issue in us, so get ready to battle some demons that you’ve hidden down VERY deep. Get ready to have memories triggered that you didn’t even know existed. And for me, quite possibly the worst part …. get ready to cry in front of a stranger who’s managed to trigger an emotional response in you just by talking about what’s currently happening in your life.

Something no one knows really is this, you’re going to actually feel worse before you feel better. As memories and experiences get dragged up out of the gutter of your subconscious.

If you’re going to therapy to look for other people to blame for your issues, then you’re probably not going for the reasons you should be, and if you come away with a victim mindset, then you’re not ready to do the growth you should be either.

Therapy isn’t there to give you an out for being a shitty person. It’s there to help you understand all the things that go on in your head when you don’t understand them yourself. It’s there to give you valuable tools so you can stop falling into recurring toxic patterns and making the same mistakes.

But above anything. I think the most important thing to understand is this: therapy is not for the weak, it’s for people who want to understand themselves and are ready to stop making the same mistakes they always do.

It takes a lot of mental strength to voluntarily go through a process like this. And I’m still very much a big advocate for it, but only for those who I think have the mental competency to hack the journey it takes you on.

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Confirmation Bias and a serious case of regression

Did you know our brains are there to protect us from things that we register as dangerous? Like it will literally send chemicals around our body when it senses danger.

And you know what we register and scary and dangerous? – the unknown. And what gives us the biggest sense of “the unknown”? Well … a break up.

When a relationship ends we enter into the biggest unknown phase that we’ve been in for a while, so we tend to go into flight or fight mode.

We start going over things in our minds like, what will I do without them, how will I fill my time, what will my future look like. Etc. Etc. But all of these questions open us up to the big scary “unknown

To our brains …. regression is the biggest form of self protection because it’s taking us back into a sense of known behaviour and our brains associate that with being safe. Our brains will literally play neurological tricks on us to make us feel like the sun shines out of someone’s back side and they can do no wrong, just because dating someone new seems too scary.

So wether you’ve just been dumped or you’ve just dumped someone, keeping a good check on your brains need to regress to your former person because they represent safety is something I would definitely recommend.

Before going back to someone you need to ask yourself these questions because another neurological issue we can be facing is falling into a state of confirmation bias.

What is confirmation bias I hear you asking?Well … you know that saying about rose tinted glasses? It’s kind of like that. It’s when our brain goes looking for memories to back up our own views and in the case of a break up, our beliefs are that the person we aren’t with anymore was the best person in the whole entire world because our desired outcome is to believe that we won’t ever find anyone that compares to them.

When we feel ourselves missing someone our brains will literally search for reasons as to why this is true, so suddenly all we can think about are the positives in an ex just so our brains can back itself up for missing them.

So when the need to regress tricks your neurological systems into a state of confirmation bias, remember that everyone has a flaw. Seriously … everyone does and I can guarantee that for every one thing you miss about someone, there will be two things that make you better off without them.

So here are the questions I like to ask myself to make sure I’m not being tricked by my own love confused brain post break up.

1. What did they bring to me that I can’t bring to myself?

2. What was a deal breaker I was happy to overlook while I was with them but not now?

3. Did they do as much for me as I done for them?

4. What traits that they have are actually irreplaceable?

Dig deep when you think about answering these, because I can guarantee that when you really think about it, you’ll see that your brain has probably tricked you into a right f***ed up confirmation bias situation!

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Why verbalising “I love you” seems so damn hard (to me)

The last few weeks have felt very self reflective for me, I tend to direct myself towards the route of self discovery and personal growth when faced with situations that I find emotionally challenging, so it got me thinking …. Why does telling someone I love them feel so unimportant to me, until people around me start asking if I’ve told the person I’m dating that I love them yet, it really doesn’t enter my head.

I really had to delve into my childhood to find an answer to this one, but really it came to me after an off topic conversation with a friend about the importance of understanding a partners love language and what we naturally gravitate towards to express our love for another person.

It suddenly dawned on me that ‘I love you’s’ weren’t something that were thrown around left right and centre as I was growing up, and I’m not saying that’s because there was no love in my family, in fact it was quite the opposite, but we knew we loved each other in different ways rather that constantly telling each other that we love them.

As I was growing up, I was shown continuously that the way someone expresses they care about you or love you is through doing things for you, from cooking you a meal, helping you with homework (one of my parents expressions of love), buying you new things or taking you on days out etc. 

Even when I look at the relationship my parents had (all be it not an ever lasting love affair) but my mum would show she cared about my dad by looking after me and my brother and not asking for help and always making sure she had home cooked meals prepared for him, it was even shown when she supported him throughout a career change. And my dads way of showing love was through financial support, he would ensure we kept a (large) roof over our heads and he would always take us on a lavish family holiday once a year. 

But this proves my point – all of these expressions of love are action based, not word based. And this was what I grew up around.

So now here’s my question I’ve had to ask myself, is this why I have such an issue with verbally expressing how I feel about someone? Quite possibly.

To me, as soon as I start going above and beyond for someone through doing things like booking weekends away, cooking for them, making the bed and making them a coffee when they want one, I’m showing how much I care or that I’m falling in love with them (because trust me, unless I really like you, I will probably always hesitate to do things for you) and it replaces the need for that all be it intimidating (to me) three word eight letter sentence.

I also tend to forget that not everyone will understand this expression of love and will need to hear exactly how I feel about them because doing things isn’t an obvious enough sign if your love language isn’t acts of service. But here’s the funny thing, I don’t want to receive love through acts of service. In fact, I want someone to tell me how they feel about me, I like having viral reassurance which is why words of affirmation is my joint top love language – so although I cant express love this way, I do want to receive it this way, which has some kind of twisted irony to it really!

But here’s the thing, the type of love you grow up around will either do one of two things to you as an adult. You either admire the love you’ve been around as a child and want to replicate that in adulthood, or … you want the total opposite because you crave what you didn’t have.

So although I can’t bring myself to tell someone how much I care about them or how much I love them, I do want them to tell me – talk about hypocritical. But it does make sense because I want the opposite of what I’ve grown up around.

My childhood also wasn’t filled with constant expressions of PDA either between my parents or towards me and my brother from my parents. We weren’t raised by overly ‘huggy‘ parents and yet for me now as an adult, physical touch is the joint top love language I want my partner to express towards me to show that they care.

So here’s the question I’ll pose to you – how did your parents express love to you and your siblings and each other?
And how do you think this has impacted what love actually is to you?

When you actually sit down to think to answer the question of ‘what is love to you’ its initially going to be hard to answer, but a lot of us will form our answer based on what we’ve seen and experienced, either through what we’ve grown up around or from the rom coms we’ve seen at the cinema. But it’s important to be able to answer the question taking out external factors that may have shaped our opinion.

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Here’s how to know if you’re self sabotaging your relationships (and how to stop)

Healthy relationships take a lot of work, and often that can mean taking a good hard look at your own dating behaviours. There are many ways we can screw up our romantic relationships without even realising it. But it’s important to think about how we could be actively sabotaging our relationships.

So how do you know if you’re self sabotaging? If you self-sabotage, you’ll probably tend to put up barriers to intimacy, This might look like being hypercritical, unassertive, picking fights, being overly distrusting or jealous, needing constant reassurance, and so on.

The roots of self-sabotage are often from early negative childhood experiences. Often it results from parents (or other caretakers) who have been either unresponsive, abusive, or inconsistent in their responsiveness and caretaking toward the child. It triggers deep-seated feelings of being unworthy or not good enough. It fosters a negative view of oneself and negative expectations or mistrust toward others.

Are you self-sabotaging your relationships?

You can speak to any expert and they’ll explain this behaviour is really common, and many of us can be guilty of self-sabotaging our relationships without even realising it. So here’s how to know if you’re doing just that.

5 Signs of self sabotage

1. You avoid pain

This is when you allow yourself to get to a certain point in a relationship before pulling back. Maybe you’ve seen too many sad films or really took to heart the saying ‘love hurts’… whatever the reason, avoiding pain is the outcome. This can manifest in a number of ways, from creating ‘bottom line’ issues out of nothing, to convincing yourself that this person isn’t ‘the one’ (if you believe in that in the first place) so you should move on.

2. You live in a fantasy land

So many people manage to avoid falling for someone because they adhere to a strict code. This is a list of ‘must haves,’ usually created in a much younger, more immature psychological state that leads that person to sabotage any and all future relationships – based on the skewed notion that the person they’re with isn’t worthy of their affection. Fantasy land behaviour often occurs within the first six months of a relationship and offers a sense of control and power that might have to be relinquished if you allow yourself to be vulnerable with another person.

3. You listen to your inner critic (waaaay too much)

We all have one, you know that little voice that goes on at you, telling you to hope for the best but prepare for the worst. Yup, that’s the one. Well it’s our inner critic that, more often than not, is responsible for self-sabotaging our relationships. Convincing ourselves that we’re ‘not worthy‘ or that ‘it’ll all end in tears anyway so what’s the point?’ is the main reason a lot of relationships can fail. We don’t allow ourselves the chance at happiness because deep down we don’t feel we deserve it.

4. You care too much about what other people think

For some people, the opinions of others far outweigh that of their partners. This can be hugely damaging to a relationship. Sometimes hearing the opinion of other people will impact decisions you make about your relationship more so than anything your partner does/says because you’re trying to find reasons to convince yourself of why it won’t work.

5. You forget that you’re not the same

Expecting your partner to think, feel and act in the same way as you do is another form of self sabotage. Rigid thinking is an unhealthy way to live and can cause great stress and upset to your relationship. Accepting and appreciating that your partner’s experiences, understandings and ultimately the way in which they identify the world are different is the only way you can truly co-exist happily with one another.

3 ways to turn off self-destruct mode

1. Practice introspection

Notice what you’re thinking when a relationship starts to get tough or when you’re trying to take the next step. How do those thoughts connect with experiences you’ve had in the past? Are you recognising the need to pull away as something that’s happened before.

This is a great time to investigate your attachment style and whether there are things you could process so you don’t carry them into future relationships.

Think about your self-esteem level and whether there’s room for improvement. Practice self-compassion as you face fears about being vulnerable with a partner, if you convince yourself you’re not worthy of being loved then this will inadvertently make you push people away who care about you due to the fear of rejection. Especially when you’ve got a lot of feelings for someone.

2. Talk through it with your partner

Whatever you’re feeling, talk it through. While there might be a crazy mix of emotions going on in your head while you’re fighting the need to pull away, it’s a good idea to talk to the person who cares about you.

At the very least, as you examine your history and habits, communicate with your partner about self-sabotaging behaviors and how you’re working to change them. Tell them how you’ve felt like this before and how they can help you overcome it.

3. Add checkpoints to your relationship road map

Once you’re aware of your sabotaging habits, have regular check-ins with yourself and your partner to look for signs of stress in the relationship.

Are you constantly thinking the relationship will end or blow up? or are you always planning an exit strategy? When things are going well, do you do something to create distance? You may notice that you vacillate between idealising your partner and then devaluing them. Commitment and vulnerability are particularly triggering. While you want to be closer to them and build on your bond together. You’re also so scared of doing that, that you end up pushing them away instead of pulling them closer in the moment you actually need them.

Observe the feelings coming up in these moments. It’s often fear and confusion. Slow down and get curious with yourself as to the thoughts, feelings, and typical behaviors connected to those thoughts and feelings and what’s made you suddenly freak out. The more you discuss how you feel with your partner the easier the journey will be because they can help to soothe your worries.

Above all else, just remember that self sabotage happens to a lot of us. And recognising that you’re doing it is the first step in making it better. Communicate to your partner as much as you can and remind yourself that although it’s hard to break a habit. It isn’t impossible.

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So let’s discuss, is flirting cheating?

This week I’ve found myself thinking about a question that’s important to understand your own answer of if you’re dating and after chucking it in the direction of various people I know, I’ll now allow anyone else to answer it for themselves.

Is flirting with other people while you’re in a relationship considered as cheating?

I think the most important thing that needs to be considered here is this – what is the intent behind the flirt, because here’s my theory that I know won’t be received well but I’ll say it anyway. I don’t believe men can flirt without there being sexual intent behind it, whereas I believe women can.

For a man to initiate flirting with a woman, there will be some kind of sexual desire there. So really when a guy flirts, the idea of that flirting to be taken further wouldn’t ever be off the table.

However for women, sometimes we flirt purely because we want to feel desired or wanted by someone and we don’t even have to find that person attractive, but it’s more of an ego boost. We can flirt to get a drink, or to get something done for us. But …. it’s actually quite rare that we do this with a sexual intent.

But does that make it any less worse? That bit I’m not sure about.

So is flirting cheating? I think it depends on the intent behind it. Because if you’re only doing it because there’s some kind of sexual desire for the person you’re flirting with then I would have to say yes, because realistically and if we’re going to be honest, it probably means if you could sleep with them you would (but hopefully your moral compass would kick in first).

All that to one side though, I think even those of us in the most secure relationships probably have our stomachs turn at the thought of our other halves flirting with people who aren’t us. So wether you consider it cheating or not, it probably isn’t morally on track, but it’s definitely a conversation the two of you should have together to make your boundaries clear and to save any feelings getting hurt in the future.

One thing I can be sure of is that flirting with other people is probably quite a big trust violation and why would you risk doing something that could break your partners trust?

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Sounds like you’ve got a lot of baggage

Imagine that. Imagine someone who used to claim to love you telling you that no one after them will love you because you now sound like you’ve got ‘baggage

Maybe that should come on the warning label when you date someone with a narcissist personality. Not only will the tear you down when you guys are together, but they will continue to do so once they aren’t even in your life.

Funny thing is, that so called ‘baggage’ they’re claiming makes you unlovable is only from all their unneeded extras they’ve left you with. You know when you get to the airport and realise you need to get rid of a few things you don’t actually want because your suitcase is too heavy, yeah well that’s the crap they left you with.

You were just fine, in fact your suitcase was way under the weight limit, but the stuff they left you with weighed 10x the amount of anything you actually owned yourself.

But it’s ok, because a heavier suitcase just means you need to develop a more keen sense of awareness for what muscles are working to carry this heavier weight.

If we’re speaking metaphorically, the muscle they’ll have left you needing to work on is actually your brain. But god damn will that muscle be toned af for the next person who wants to try and join you at this made up airport (kind of like a terming to jet off to a perfect healthy relationship).

Here’s the part when you can thank your narcissistic piece of s**t ex for leaving you with the weight of your relationship and where it went wrong because all they’ve done is provide you with the ability to sense someone with negative intentions a mile off.

Typically speaking, this kind of ex will normally be the second person you fall in love with. And this is based off of the findings of anthropologist Helen Fisher and according to her we only fall in love three times in our life but our second love, well that’s the hardest one.

It’s the one that teaches us lessons about who we are and how we often want or need to be loved.

Our second love will typically become a cycle, often one we keep repeating because we think that somehow the ending will be different than before. Yet, each time we try, it somehow ends worse than before and we focus so much on making it work that we will tend to lose sight of if we actually should be trying to make it work at all.

More often than not, our second love is unhealthy, unbalanced or narcissistic. Most likely there will be high levels of drama. This is exactly what keeps us addicted to this storyline, because it’s the emotional roller coaster of extreme highs and lows and like a junkie trying to get a fix, we stick through the lows with the expectation of the high.

So it’s no surprise really that this love has just us with some ‘baggage’.

However …. what it has done is shown us exactly what we don’t want from a love that we will have forever. It’s also taught us lessons that we would never have learnt if it wasn’t for going through this experience.

So thank your second love, for leaving you with their baggage (and then kindly reminding you of it years later just to make sure you don’t move on from them) because without them, you wouldn’t know what a healthy long lasting relationship is and how to cherish the man/woman that makes you feel safe and respected.

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Emotional intelligence

10 emotional intelligence tips from the masters | The Enterprisers Project

Being self-aware emotionally can both be a good and a bad thing, while being able to recognise how you feel and whats triggered it is always good, the not being able to do anything about it part is where it sucks. It’s like being given flat packed furniture with the end image and no instructions.

Maybe ignorance is bliss when it comes to emotional intelligence?

Because now you’ve become aware of that feeling in your chest, the one that’s telling you someones moved into a small space in your heart and ever so slowly they’re making renovations and expanding the space they’ve unknowingly claimed as theirs.

You know what this is going to mean, so you’re internally screaming at them to stop with the extensions they’re trying to build because falling in love is one of the scariest things you’ve every experienced in your life. To you, falling in love means a feeling of loss of control. Your emotions don’t entirely feel like your own and you’ve spent years priding yourself on the fact that the one thing that you have total and utter control over are your own emotions.

But you can feel it changing.

You can feel it changing as you make them laugh and their smile brightens up your whole day. You can feel it changing when they’re laying their head on your lap while you run your fingers through their hair. You can feel it changing in those moments of emotional vulnerability that the two of you share, the moments that belong to no one but the two of you.

You feel it when suddenly you’ve realised you’re preplanning things in your head with them that won’t be happening for months.

And you’re scared, I get it.

This is one of the times when you wish you couldn’t feel every emotional change thats happening inside you, because right now these heightened emotions are screaming at you and you can’t even try and ignore them. But the whole ‘I can’t even do anything about this‘ is whats making things worse.

It’s as if all you can do is stand and watch a building burn down in front of you despite knowing where to get water, except you can’t get the water because all of a sudden your arms have stopped working. So that’s it, all you can do is stand there and watch the destruction unfold.

And the destruction is alarmingly beautiful, in a way where you want to walk away but you can’t because you also have a desire to see what happens at the end.

Being self aware can be a good and a bad thing, but when it comes to love emotional intelligence sometimes often leads to more confusion because you’re so in tune to not only your own feelings but also the feelings of your partners.

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That Narcissistic Lover Broke Her

The Vampire Diaries discovered by Tay on We Heart It

When she fell in love with a narcissist she sadly lost a part of herself that will never come back. And while you’ll never meet the old her, the one that fell in love without caution and wasn’t afraid of being hurt, the version of her that stands in front of you now is wiser and more well rounded when it comes to life, but you need to understand why she does things in ways that maybe you won’t always understand.

All those times when you’ve found her difficult to read or confusing to deal with, just remember at one point she had her own self worth shattered into a million pieces by the one person she thought loved her more than anything.

When she hears you call her beautiful there’s always going to be a small part of her that thinks you’re only saying it because you know it’s what she wants to hear. I know you’re wondering why your compliments always partly fall on deaf ears, or when she does acknowledge them they’re greeted with more of a shrug and a laugh, but it’s because she’s used to compliments always being followed with a ‘but‘ things that should have made her feel like a princess were always tinted by comparing her to others and making her feel like she could be better, prettier and smarter ‘Your hair looks so beautiful when you have it straight‘ he would whisper in her ear ‘but don’t you think it would look better how that woman over there has hers, when women have a slight wave in their hair it looks so effortless‘ so from that point on, she maybe straighten her hair once or twice a year.

He changed her, he convinced her that she never looked as good with light hair and that the only colour she should have on her nails was red. He picked out what was and wasn’t appropriate for her to wear, so if you see her pulling at her skirt when you’re together it’s probably because she’s worried you think its too short or ‘not appropriate‘. In the back of her mind her appearance and how she comes across to others is always going to play on her mind. She knows she needs to look elegant and well put together to qualify as ‘girlfriend material’.

She needs that physical closeness, she needs lots of contact with you to feel wanted, her heightened sexual appetite is partly fuelled by her past, a past that taught her that sex was how you create a connection with someone. She learned that you didn’t need endless conversations and to really get to know the good and bad in someone. As long as he wanted her body it meant that she was wanted. She isn’t used to someone wanting to hear about her passions and what makes her tick, what she’s used to is someone telling her that her ambitions are ‘ridiculous‘ and she should aim for something more ‘realistic‘. She’s not used to being around someone who sees life in technicolour like she does, someone who embraces imagination and creativity and encourages her to go after the shit she wants because of course she can achieve it if she sets her mind to it.

She knows it’s annoying how badly she deals with confrontation, if something annoys her she’ll spend days trying to figure out a way to bring it up to you without sounding ‘crazy‘ a word she’s heard so many times before when she’s bought up things that made her uncomfortable, so now …. she stresses about it instead of talking about it, she’s used to bottling her feelings because expressing them was never met by calmness and understanding. But she hates how scared she gets to talk to you about things you wouldn’t even stress about.

You won’t understand why she pushed you away so hard at the start, but her fear of letting someone in as much as she’d done before triggered her avoidant dismissive attachment style and she needed to show that she didn’t need anyone.

She’s used to being chased relentlessly, but she’s also used to being told that she isn’t enough once the chase is over.

When she fell in love with a narcissist she never knew how much long term damage it would do, and if she did …. she would never have let the years of turbulence play out until she became so dependant on one person that she totally lost her own identity.

When you encourage her to go away and do her own things, it scares her, she won’t ever admit that to you because she’s so fiercely independent, but it triggers a deep set anxious side of her that only comes out when she’s dating. When you encourage her to not need you, she thinks it’s because you’re getting ready to leave her.

While she never wants to need you, if she falls for you, she will need you and thats because of past experiences.

She’s not as fierce and scary as you may think, but the shield she’s put up to protect herself from people like the ones in her past, makes her seem like she’s made from steel.

Her past broke her, but she’s spent a very long time rebuilding her own little castle. It’s important you understand that after she’s fallen in love with a narcissist, she’s always going to be a bit trickier to understand. But if she loves you, you’ll never experience a love like it again, because after that kind of trauma …. she will forever go to the end of the earth for the right person she finds to be deserving of her and her heart.