One thing you will always hear me say on this blog is that relationships are not easy. I repeat, relationships are not easy! But at the end of the day, most of us are looking for that type of companionship in life and so sometimes it takes giving various dating situations a go. Some that aren’t so great and some that could possibly lead to finding the love of your life. What I hate to see, is when a relationship goes south and a person becomes bitter.
Sometimes things just don’t work out. I think that facing that reality really gives you a healthier outlook on relationships in general. It’s so important to realize that a relationship’s demise doesn’t take away from who you are as a person. More than likely, both people made mistakes that led to the end result no matter what both parties try to convey. So I think accepting responsibility for that is one of the first steps towards vindicating yourself from bitterness.
Don’t get me wrong, I understand some situations are super jacked up and foul. You may have been taken advantage of, lied to, or mistreated, but none of us are perfect. Occasionally our fault is trusting someone we shouldn’t have or allowing a behavior to continue longer than we should have. At the end of the day, we are responsible for our happiness and well-being.
It is okay to allow yourself time to hurt, time to be angry, time to be bitter. But I am suggesting a time limit for sure. No one wants to be friends with the bitter girl. The one who after everyone else finally settles down is literally the Tasha Mack of the group, old and jaded. Why would you allow a person to continue stealing your joy long after the relationship is through? I guarantee that the person who hurt you is somewhere living their life, either reformed or screwing over the next person. But you are lamenting over what happened years ago, unable to open yourself up enough to receive newfound love. This my friend, is all rooted in an essential principle of being able to love on purpose – forgiveness.
Getting better instead of bitter after a sour relationship involves forgiveness. At the end of the day, you have to be able to release that person. And really their poor choices are on them. They have to answer to God for the decisions that they have made. You don’t have to answer for them, but you will have to answer for you. And guess what, God wants us to be able to forgive. If we can’t forgive other people, we can’t be forgiven for the things that we have done wrong. And YOU have done things wrong. We all have. We’re all sinners. So put your stones down in the glass house. Never a good idea.
I will always encourage you to do what works for you. But I very seriously doubt that bitterness and hatred is getting you far. Outwardly it may feel good and like you are sticking it to the world, but really you are not. You are just hurting yourself. The thing about the heart that’s too guarded is that no one can hurt you, but no love can get in either. We have to learn how to let our walls down and how to turn our past mistakes into life lessons instead of the nail in the coffin of our love lives.
I’ve watched friends, family members and the like, let one relationship take them out of the game. I mean, done. They’ve dabble in other things, but never fully allowed themselves to be able to find something better. Sure, everyone may not be looking for a couple of forevers but even in their singleness they are not thriving. They just seem lonely and sad and have no idea how to mend the broken pieces from the past. Guess what, you were whole before them and you can be whole after.
Forgive them, forgive yourself and get on with your life single or otherwise. No one deserves that much power over your life. And I promise you, you can indeed love again. It takes time. It takes self-evaluation and it takes healing. But it will only happen if you are open to it. Take the opportunity to become a better person. Leave the bitterness for BET TV characters. You have a life to live. You have a love to find.
Have you ever been holding on to something, letting it affect your life far after it has happened? What steps can you take to begin letting it go?