What we all are seeking is love. What a shame it is to confuse love with lust, and end up allowing true love to slip through your fingers faster than you can blink. I am speaking to you poor woman, the woman who hasn’t had the most luck at love and has ended up spending the past few years of her life devoted to losers, married men, mental and verbal abusers, women beaters, ex-cons, thugs, criminals and gangbangers. You, low self-esteem woman, who is just now realizing that she and she alone has allowed her love life to hit the bricks.
By now, you’re hitting yourself in the head because you’ve allowed all the wrong men in your life. And yet the past is the past, and cannot be relived. All you can do is move forward from this point on, and try to regain whatever shred of dignity and respect you can muster, right? Well, that’s partly right. What’s more important is to pinpoint why you accepted such negative behavior from the opposite sex in the first place, in order to prevent repeating the self-depreciating cycle that got you here.
PERHAPS YOU GREW UP BEING REJECTED BY MEN FOR THE FOLLOWING:
1). Overweight (and/or all of the below :)
2.) The Nerdy, Outcast
3.) The Desperate Fashion Victim
4.) Suffered from Strange or Offensive Body Odor or Breath Odor
5.) Has unusual features or disfigurations (beak nose, large braces, knock-kneed legs, etc.)
6.) Constantly seeking a “daddy” image in every man you meet due to your lack of a dad.
You’ve made all the wrong choices when it comes to love. BUT you didn’t see it at the time that it happened, and yet you see it now. All of it is in your face – the poor choices you made to purposely choose men who didn’t love you and wanted to abuse you, leaving your heart lonely and your self-confidence bruised.
So now you’re on your own, and you want to make a change. After finding myself in love with my college sweetheart, a cold-hearted, selfish man who we’ll call “Mike”, I found myself in the same predicament. Alone, now raising one child as a result of my failed marriage, and left with all the reasons why I hadn’t created the life dream I had always wanted. It was because I had grown accustomed to accepting whatever a man placed in front of me.
My story will be short, but not so sweet. I had always suffered from low self-esteem. Constantly told by my mother of how I wouldn’t amount to much and that the world was so much larger than I was. I was raised to believe that I would always be inadequate, either for my race or my sex. Being raised multi-racial, as both Black and Chinese (although that truth wouldn’t be revealed until some years later – save that for another article), wasn’t easy at all. After a while, I started to believe what my mother said about me. And hence, the beginning of my journey from low self-esteem, and into self-love and acceptance, where I find myself today.
This is my public acknowledgment of having suffered from self-esteem so low that I allowed nothing but bad boys into my life, for over an entire decade. From my first boyfriend right on down to my ex-husband, each and every last one of my relationships have been unsuccessful, hurtful and for the most part, unreciprocated. Now I certainly couldn’t claim that I was a “victim”. Because had I been a victim, then at least one of my relationships would’ve been successful, even if it was brief.
I victimized myself year after year, by always choosing men who were emotionally and/or physically unavailable. That was my M.O. – choose the man that would offer me only his body and sparse moments of his time, but no real love, sympathy, respect or attention. This directly related to my mother’s early words of never being good enough. By allowing these “distant” men in my life, I was simply building a shield against being hurt by them. Since my brain was programmed to believe I was never ‘good’ enough, I made sure I chose men that fit that bill…those men who were never good enough and had no real desire to ever be.
So now that you’re also at the same point I’m at – the point where you’re fed up of allowing men to beat up on you emotionally, verbally, sexually or physically. You no longer want to be someone’s option; you want to be the first choice. You no longer want to be the side piece; you want to be the wife. You’re at a point where you don’t want to be any man’s appetizer anymore; you want to be the one main course. And yet in order to get what you want out of love, you have to love who you are first.
I’m always amazed at how women, like myself, who haven’t truly loved ourselves, are so shocked when we don’t receive true love from the men we seek. There is simply no way around getting respect from others if you don’t have respect for yourself!
YOU MUST DO THE FOLLOWING IF YOU WISH TO ESCAPE THE BAD BOYFRIEND SYNDROME:
- FACE THE TRUTH FOR ONCE: Acknowledge the fact that you don’t love yourself, and work on correcting it. If a woman truly loves herself, she does not allow any man to treat her wrong for any reason. Point blank, Period! There are no exceptions to this rule.
- DON’T DWELL ON THE BAD: It’s been proven that people only get more of what we think about. In other words, the more you think about the kind of relationship you don’t want to have, the more of that very kind of relationship is what you get. Think about the kind of relationship you envision in your dreams—the kind where you are loved, appreciated and respected. The more you focus on that, the greater the likelihood you’ll draw that kind of experience into your life.
- VISUALIZE THE RELATIONSHIP YOU DREAM OF: This may sound corny but it’s entirely necessary in your forward motion to mentally visualize the type of relationship you want. Of course, you can get carried away – imagine he brings you flowers for no reason, or that he likes to massage your feet after a long day while telling you how beautiful you are. The fact of the matter is, you are truly beautiful and need to be recognized as such.
- FIGHT THE TEMPTATION: There will always be temptation to return to your old ways of dating the wrong men. That ugly nemesis of low self-esteem might try and return to haunt you. Maybe you’ll be great with your newfound self-love for a while, and will fall back into old habits. But don’t beat yourself up. You don’t have to stay there. IN life, sometimes we move forward, only to take two or three steps back. But that doesn’t mean we have to stay there. We can always give ourselves another chance at love by first loving ourselves, and not allowing random men to hurt and deman us … again and again.