I Needed A Friend, Not Just A Boyfriend

Friend
God & Man

I liked the relationship-y parts of our relationship. Holding hands. Posting pictures across social media. Showing you off to my family. Having the title of boyfriend and girlfriend.

I liked cuddling with you. Kissing you. Sleeping with you. I liked taking you out to the park or to the mall and having everyone glance our way because we made such a cute couple.

I liked the times when I fell asleep with my head snuggled against your chest and when we held hands during movies and when you kissed the top of my forehead.

The rest of the time? I felt unfulfilled.

You were a decent boyfriend on paper — but that wasn’t all that I wanted from you. I also wanted a friend.

Technically, you would do all of the things boyfriends were supposed to do. You would text me first thing in the morning (but we would always have the same boring, bland conversations).

You would plan dates and take me on them over weekends (but we would spend more time staring at separate phones than making conversation).

You would invite me out with your friends so we could all hang out together (but I would end up sitting quietly in the corner, unwanted and uninvolved).

You would give me plenty of attention and attempt to cheer me up whenever I was in a bad mood (but you never succeeded).

We were boyfriend and girlfriend but we were never friends. We never made each other laugh. We never created inside jokes. We never connected. I felt like we were miles apart even when we were in the same room together, on the same couch, holding hands in silence (and those silences always felt awkward, never comfortable).

Even though you put in effort, which I appreciated, it always felt like something was missing when we were together. We were never at ease. We never let loose and acted silly. We had plenty of empty conversations about television shows and movies, but we never joked around and we never delved into anything real either. Our interactions felt forced.

We were dating, so I should have felt untroubled around you, but that was never the case. There were times when I had no idea what to say to you, when I was at a loss about how to continue the conversation. There were moments when I looked at you and wasn’t entirely sure how we fit together. The chemistry just wasn’t there.

Sure, you were attractive. You were nice. You were an all-around good guy. But I never had fun when we were together. Most of the time (unless I was enjoying the feeling of my head against your chest or your lips against my own) I was wishing I was someplace else.

The problem is that I wanted more than a boyfriend. I wanted a best friend. I wanted someone I felt completely comfortable alongside. Someone who could make me smile without trying too hard, who could make me feel beautiful without breaking a sweat, who could make me feel like enough naturally.

I want you to know you were a good boyfriend. But we just weren’t good enough friends to make our relationship last. TC mark

Source : https://thoughtcatalog.com/holly-riordan/2018/06/i-needed-a-friend-not-just-a-boyfriend/

My Insecurities Are Ruining My Love Life

Insecurities
Unsplash / Alex Iby

When someone gives signals they are interested in me, I am oblivious. I assume they are only being nice when they are flirting — and on the rare occasions when I actually admit to myself that they are flirting, I convince myself that they are only bored. That they aren’t interested in anything more than a fun night out.

I cannot imagine someone falling for me. I cannot fathom a world where a guy would choose to be with me over all of his other options. Entering a happy relationship does not sound believable. It sounds unrealistic.

My insecurities shatter my self-confidence and without any sense of self-worth I cannot bring myself to flirt. I cannot conjure up the courage to walk over to someone I find attractive and initiate a conversation with them because I assume they won’t want anything to do with me. I assume they are going to give me one-word answers until I get the hint and walk away from them.

I feel like I am not relationship material, because even when someone approaches me and makes the first move, I am awkward. I am hesitant to believe their compliments because they sound phony. I don’t see myself as beautiful, so I have trouble accepting how anyone else could.

I am the kind of person who would need reassurance that someone loves me, even if they agreed to marry me. Even if we had children together. Even if we spent a lifetime with each other.

My trust issues are extreme. I do not believe anyone will stay. I am in a constant state of paranoia that I am going to be abandoned for someone prettier, younger, livelier, sweeter. I have a fear of growing attached to anyone because I don’t want to be blindsided when they leave.

That is why I have taught myself to expect the worst. I assume people will ghost me. I assume conversations are going to go poorly. I assume flirtatious texts are never going to lead to anything serious.

My insecurities have convinced me that I am forever alone and I have accepted that fact. I have settled into a life without dates, without kisses, without cuddling. I am used to being alone. I might not be entirely happy this way, but I am comfortable.

When someone actually shows interest in dating me, I do not know how to handle myself. Sometimes I run away out of fear I will screw everything up. I will ignore texts. I will cancel plans. I will push people away because I never learned how to do the opposite.

I am at a loss when it comes to romance. I don’t know how to be sweet instead of sarcastic. I don’t know how to dress for a first date because I would rather wear sweats. I don’t know the right words to say to seduce someone or the right moves to make when I want them to know I like them too.

I am too insecure to win someone over on a date. I am too insecure to write a witty text back. I am too insecure to be myself because I am busy wishing I was anybody else. TC mark

Source : https://thoughtcatalog.com/holly-riordan/2018/06/my-insecurities-are-ruining-my-love-life/

When You Love Someone, You Let Your Walls Down

Let Your Walls Down
God & Man

You cannot keep your heart guarded forever. Once you find someone — someone you can trust, someone you can rely on, someone who gives you respect and affection and everything you have ever hoped to receive — then you have to let down the walls that have been protecting you. You have to take a risk, even though it’s scary.

Yes, you could end up having your heart shattered in the end. Your person could abandon you or let you down. But if you never take that chance, if you never allow another person to fully infiltrate your world, then you will be breaking your own heart.

You can risk falling in love or you can risk feeling lonely forever. You can risk giving someone a chance or risk a lifetime of regret about how you walked away before your relationship even began.

When you love someone, you are taking a leap. You are giving them access to your soul. You are giving them the tools to hurt you — but you are also giving them the tools to make you happier than you have ever been before. You just have to have faith they are going to use the right ones, that they are going to choose to cherish you rather than forsake you.

When you love someone, you have to tear down your walls, because they haven’t been protecting you as well as you thought. For such a long time, you kept your guard up. You pushed people away. You called yourself a lone wolf. But didn’t you still experience sadness? Weren’t there still moments when you were disappointed? Just because you were able to hide your emotions doesn’t mean you were able to turn them off.

When you love someone, you have to allow your vulnerable side to be seen. You cannot keep pretending the way you do around the rest of the world. Your feelings should not be hidden. Your emotions should not be repressed. Your person deserves to know who you really are — and a big part of who you are is how you react to things. So let yourself cry in front of them. Let yourself get excited. Let yourself feel.

Show them every single side of you without covering up. If they are the right person for you, then you will not have to work hard to impress them. It will happen naturally, in the moments when you don’t even realize you are being seen. They will spot you reading a book and think about how cute you look as your eyes scan the words. They will hear the excitement in your voice when you talk about your favorite show and swoon over how passionate you sound. They will fall in love with the pieces of yourself you never thought about before.

That is why you shouldn’t pretend in front of them. You shouldn’t put on an act by saying what you think they want to hear, because the real you is more than enough. The real you is someone worth loving. TC mark

Source : https://thoughtcatalog.com/holly-riordan/2018/06/when-you-love-someone-you-let-your-walls-down/

Don’t Make Hypothetical Plans With Me

Plans
Unsplash / Vladislav Nikonov

Don’t tell me you want to get drinks with me soon and that you hope to see me over the weekend and that you miss me like mad. Don’t make false promises about how you are going to take me out to fancy dinners and invite me out with your friends and travel around the world on vacations with me.

Don’t lie to me because even though I might not realize you are bullshitting me in that moment, the truth will come out eventually. I will figure out that you were only saying what I wanted to hear and had zero intention of spending that time with me.

I am sick of getting my hopes up, so please don’t make hypothetical plans with me that you are never going to follow through on. I don’t want to miss out on the chance to spend time with friends who actually give a shit about me because I am sitting at home, expecting to see you instead.

So don’t get me excited about seeing you soon and then turn around and claim you are too busy with work whenever I ask to hang out. Don’t wait until the last second, after I have already showered and shaved and made myself look pretty, to inform me you are canceling our plans for the night. Don’t disappoint me. Don’t play games with me. Don’t screw me over.

I know what you have been doing. You have been keeping me on hold as a backup plan. If you have nothing better to do, then you will decide to spend time with me, but if a better offer comes along (which apparently happens often) then you will ignore me. You will pretend that you forgot about our plans or that something came up. 

Sometimes you won’t even do me the courtesy of answering my texts when I ask you if you are free. You don’t even have the balls to say no so that I have the freedom to make other plans. Instead you will ignore me and then come up with some ridiculous excuse about how you weren’t looking at your phone or how you or your battery died — or won’t give any excuse at all because you don’t believe I deserve that much.

I am tired of making plans with you, imagining how much fun we are going to have inside of my head, and then being crushed by the reality that you are never going to show up on my doorstep. You are never going to give me what you have been offering. You are only going to keep making hypothetical plans in case you need me one day.

I want to put an end to this. Stop promising to hang out with me and then backing out of our plans. Stop getting me excited about seeing you and then ending my nights with disappointment. Stop making me feel like an idiot for waiting and waiting and waiting for you when it’s clear you do not care about me in the least. TC mark

Source : https://thoughtcatalog.com/holly-riordan/2018/06/dont-make-hypothetical-plans-with-me/

When You’re Dating A Good Guy But Are Still Scared About Getting Cheated On

Cheated On
Unsplash / João Silas

When you date someone faithful, someone who would never dream of breaking his promises to you, you have a hard time coping with your trust issues. You aren’t sure how to handle it when the fears come creeping back inside because deep down you know he wouldn’t do anything to hurt you.

There haven’t been any red flags. He has been treating you right since day one. He never looks at another girl for too long. He never comments on how you could look better. He loves you the way you are. He claims you are the most beautiful woman in the world and you believe him, you can tell he is speaking from the heart.

But you have been hurt in the past so you are still skeptical even though you have absolutely no reason to be. You read too deeply into every move he makes, because you have heard stories of cheaters and read articles about them and were probably even cheated on yourself before. You know the signs to watch out for so you keep your eyes open at all times.

If he comes home a little later than usual, if he starts dressing differently, if he buys new cologne, if he smiles down at his phone, then you start to get nervous. The worst case scenario plays out in your mind, taunting you.

You don’t want to accuse him of doing anything when there isn’t any proof, but you don’t want to keep your fears to yourself either because then he will be wondering why you have been so quiet lately. So you open up to him, you tell him that you’re sorry and it’s stupid but you are terrified of being abandoned again.

He might try to calm you down at first, to reassure you that he hasn’t done anything to hurt you, but only the first few times. If you make a habit out of your accusations, then you’ll eventually get into arguments because he has no idea how to make you more comfortable. He has already been doing everything he can and you still don’t trust him. He feels powerless. He feels like he is being interrogated.

When you date a good guy but are still scared of getting cheated on, you know you are probably only being paranoid. You know that you should push your fears to the back of your mind — but you push yourself away from your person instead.

You tell yourself that if you don’t care about him, then you cannot get hurt by him. You erect a wall to protect your heart because you could not even imagine how much pain you would experience if you allowed yourself to trust him, to love him, to dedicate yourself to him and he hurt you anyway.

In the end, you end up sabotaging a perfectly good relationship because you cannot accept the idea that someone loves you and only you, that he wants to spend the rest of his life alongside you, that he wouldn’t choose anyone else even if he had the option. TC mark

Source : https://thoughtcatalog.com/holly-riordan/2018/06/when-youre-dating-a-good-guy-but-are-still-scared-about-getting-cheated-on/

When You Love Someone, You Share Your Secrets With Them

Secrets
Unsplash / Tyler Nix

When you love someone, you let them inside the corners of your soul you keep hidden from the rest of the world. You allow yourself to be vulnerable in front of them. You tear your walls down and give them full access to your heart. You do not hold anything back from them. You offer them every little sliver of yourself.

When you love someone, you show them your bad side. You do not keep any stories restricted from them out of fear they will judge you. You know they will still love you even after hearing about the darkest things you have done. You know that instead of dwelling on something that happened to you in the past, they will be proud of you for turning your life around and becoming the beautiful, soft-hearted person that you are today.

When you love someone, you tell each other everything. You are completely open. You do not hide facts from them because you know they are going to get annoyed by the real story. You do not twist the truth in order to make yourself look better. You do not disrespect them by only giving them half the details in order to manipulate them into thinking the way you want them to think.

When you love someone, you answer all of their questions with as much honesty as you can give. You do not dodge and weave around topics that are uncomfortable. You do not make them feel like having a conversation with you is like pulling teeth. You are straightforward with them. You tell them harsh truths instead of telling them what they want to hear because you do not want to lie to them, not even a little.

When you love someone, you express your emotions in front of them. You do not hurry into the bathroom when you feel tears welling in your eyes. You let them watch you cry because you are comfortable around them, because you know they are not annoyed by your feelings, because you know they are happy to hold you and help you through whatever pain you are experiencing.

When you love someone, you tell them about the hopes, the fears, and the insecurities you have not mentioned to anyone else before. You give them classified information about yourself that you have never even offered your closest friends. You are completely transparent with them because you know they love you unconditionally.

When you love someone, you respect their secrets. You guard them with a lock and key. You do not get drunk at bars and tell all of your friends stories that you know your person would prefer to keep private. You do not laugh behind their back. You do not throw something personal they trusted you enough to tell you into your next argument when you are trying to say the most hurtful words possible.

When you love someone, you show them your true self and you love them for being their authentic self. TC mark

Source : https://thoughtcatalog.com/holly-riordan/2018/06/when-you-love-someone-you-share-your-secrets-with-them/

Overthinking Will Chase Away Your Forever Person

Forever Person
God & Man

Overthinking will ruin your relationship, because it means you are not talking to each other. It means you are assuming what your person meant when they sent a certain text or used a certain tone. It means that instead of feeling comfortable enough to ask them a question to get clarification, you are choosing to guess what has been running through their mind to avoid a conversation.

Overthinking will chase away your forever person because it makes it look like you think the worst of them. You are probably paranoid due to your own insecurities, but it doesn’t seem that way from their point of view. If you are worried they are cheating every time they come home late and worried they are making fun of you every time they smile at their phone — then it looks like you don’t trust them. It looks like you think they are heartless and willing to hurting you.

If this person really is your forever, then you should be able to talk to them. You should feel comfortable sitting them down and having an adult discussion. If they are the right person for you, they are not going to be turned off by hearing about your feelings. They will want to know what has been bothering you. They will be happy to answer any questions that have been nagging you.

You need to talk to your person, because if you keep guessing what they are thinking, half of the time you are going to be wrong. Half of the time you are going to stress yourself out over a problem that does not even exist. Half of the time you are going to make your life harder than it has to be — and you could ruin your relationship in the process.

Think about it. When you have a fake argument with them in your head because you are convinced they did something to upset you, how do you react? You get quiet. Or snippy. Or defensive. Or angry. And your person has no idea why you are feeling that way, so they react in anger and then you’re suddenly in a fight about nothing.

The healthy move is to communicate with your person. If they say something that sounds suspicious, ask them what they meant. If they come home late and you have questions, ask them. You will be surprised by how many of your worries vanish once you create an open discussion.

You cannot keep letting yourself overthink because you are driving yourself insane for no reason. Instead of jumping to the worst case scenario, take a breather and ask your person about what has been bugging you. If they are your soulmate like you think they are, then they will be happy to clear everything up. They will be happy to calm your fears.

And if you’re dating the kind of person who fuels your paranoia, who refuses to answer questions and jumps down your throat whenever you express emotion, leave. You are in the wrong relationship anyway. TC mark

Source : https://thoughtcatalog.com/holly-riordan/2018/06/overthinking-will-chase-away-your-forever-person/

You Are Confusing | Thought Catalog

Confusing
Unsplash / Andrei Lazarev

You will leave likes across my selfies and watch my snap stories, but when I try to continue a conversation with you over text, you refuse to answer. You pop up in my world here and there. I can never figure out when you are going to respond to me and when you are going to leave me waiting a full week. There isn’t a pattern to your behavior. You jump from acting like I’m one of your closest friends to acting like you’ve forgotten my existence.

You have been confusing the hell out of me. My friends don’t even want to hear my complaints anymore because they are always the same. Even when I think that you have changed, that things might be different this time, you prove me wrong. History repeats and I let it happen.

I know I should put an end to your games. I should leave you behind. I should decide that I deserve better and should hold out for someone who is actually going to provide what I need. I should say screw you for stringing me along for such a long time and find someone who would never hurt me, not even for a minute.

There was a time I almost did leave. When I decided that I had had enough of your mixed signals and couldn’t take it anymore. But that was the exact moment when you decided to change your tune again.

You texted me back. You invited me over. You flirted with me. You paid attention to me.

You stopped your string of disappearances and went back to being prince charming. You complimented me on my outfits, on my hair, on my personality. You got jealous whenever I mentioned another boy. You found any excuse to touch me. You made me feel breathless.

But that didn’t last for long either. You only gave me attention for a few days before returning to ghost status.

That is what you always do, so I’m not sure why I expect anything different. You flirt with me, you get my hopes up, and then you leave so they come crashing back down.

You don’t make any sense to me. I cannot wrap my head around your decisions. If you liked me, wouldn’t you stay? If you weren’t interested in me, wouldn’t you stay gone?

It would be so much easier if you were distant all the time. That way, I wouldn’t have any reason to wait for you. I would assume my feelings were one-sided. I would be able to convince myself you truly were a waste of my time.

But that’s not the case. When you are with me, you make me feel like you are slowly falling in love with me. You look at me like I’m beautiful. You listen to me like I’m important. You laugh like I am hysterical and you smile like we’re best friends. When you are actually paying attention to me, it’s the most glorious feeling in the world.

But the rest of the time, when you are ignoring me, it feels like absolute hell. TC mark

Source : https://thoughtcatalog.com/holly-riordan/2018/06/you-are-confusing/

The Strongest Girls Care Too Much

The strongest girls are the ones who are unafraid of caring. The ones who will express their feelings without hesitation. The ones who realize it is okay to show vulnerability. The ones who continue to wear their hearts on their sleeves even though it has hurt them in the past.

The strongest girls misvalue themselves because they wish they cared less. They wish they didn’t give a fuck. They wish they could turn their emotions off like a switch. A part of them hates themselves for how much they care.

However, the truth they are unable to see is that the strongest girls care deeply — but they care about the right things. They don’t care about their reputation, about how much money they make or which labels are on the clothing they buy.

They care about whether their friends are doing okay. They care about how much time they get to spend with their family. They care about whether they are advancing with their career. They care about their passions, about their hopes, about their accomplishments. They care about creating a life that fulfills them.

The strongest girls are the ones who still care about that toxic person who left their life a long time ago. They would never allow that person back into their life because they have high standards — but at the same time they hope that person is doing okay. They wish that person the best even if that person was the absolute worst.

The strongest girls come across as pushovers — but that is not the case at all. They have a temper they could unleash at any time, but they choose kindness. They choose to see the best in others. They choose to look at the world as a beautiful place instead of dwelling on the horrors hidden inside, which takes work.

The strongest girls are selfless. Sure, they consider themselves a priority because self-care is important, but they also care about the world as a whole. They care about the well-being of others. They would rather spread happiness than hog it for themselves.

The strongest girls are the ones who care too much. The ones who leave their hearts open even though it’s risky. Who are in love with the idea of love even though they have been bruised before. These girls send double texts because they are worried about you. They like your selfies to make you feel empowered. They overthink every word that leaves their lips because they would never want to hurt your feelings.

The strongest girls are the ones who are unafraid of living their truth, because they would rather be honest than tell a little white lie. They would rather admit how they are feeling than bottle up the pain until they explode. They would rather send too many texts and ask too many questions than send mixed signals that leave the other person feeling unworthy.

The strongest girls care too much — but that is a good thing. That is proof of their soft heart. TC mark

Source : https://thoughtcatalog.com/holly-riordan/2018/06/the-strongest-girls-care-too-much/

Why Did You Come Back?

I made it clear that I wanted a relationship with you.

You made it clear that you were not ready for a relationship with me.

It stung to know we were never going to get together. I spent countless nights questioning my worth. I used to daydream about you coming back, deciding that you were wrong to turn me down, and starting a love story with me. But I have moved on since then.

I was not going to wait around for you when you acted like there was no point in waiting, like your decision was set in stone. I thought we were over. I thought you meant what you said.

I cannot even be excited that you have changed your mind, because you chose the worst possible time. You could have returned months ago and I would have happily given you a chance. You could have made this easy.

Why did you come back now, now that you know I am no longer available, now that you know I am with someone else, now that you know my heart is in other hands?

I’ve been wondering whether your bad timing was an accident or whether it was on purpose. I’ve been wondering whether you only want me now because there is no way you are going to get me. Because you are annoyed that I am no longer begging for your attention. Because you miss the days when I treated you like you were the center of the universe and want those days back.

There must be a reason why you picked now to fight for me when there were a million moments in the past when you could have done the same thing.

It seems like you always pick the worst possible time to like my selfies, to send me texts, to express your feelings, to ask for me back. You never want me when I am within reach. You only want me when I am miles away.

Maybe I’m overthinking again. Maybe you have good intentions. Maybe you cannot stand seeing me with somebody else and that is why you have decided to make your move now, because you cannot take another second without me.

Or maybe you could not care less about my happiness. Maybe you want power over me. Maybe you think you want to be with me because it’s an unobtainable fantasy — but if I gave up everything to be with you would you still want me then? Or would you grow bored because I’m no longer a challenge? Would you change your mind again and say that you aren’t ready for a relationship? Would you manipulate me into losing someone who actually cares about me and then decide against becoming my boyfriend for the second time?

I don’t know why you are back. I don’t know why you had to do this now and make my world more complicated.

Part of me is happy that you have changed your mind. But another part of me is annoyed. Another part of me hates you for doing this, because I had been doing perfectly fine without you. TC mark

Source : https://thoughtcatalog.com/holly-riordan/2018/06/why-did-you-come-back/