Looking back, there is one assertion that perfectly encapsulates every relationship I’ve had: We accept the love we think we deserve.
During my first relationship, I was mainly happy to have one in the first place. It also instilled in me the notion that I needed to work hard to be worthy of being in a relationship at all – probably one of the reasons why I stayed in that relationship for way too long.
In the second relationship, I took that whole “must be worthy” thing to the next level. I ended up spending so much energy on trying to do and know everything that eventually, it felt more like I was some kind of father figure instead of a partner.
Since I hadn’t caught on to my portion of responsibilities and insecurities in the dynamic, my third relationship was when it all came crashing down. My partner at the time developed a strong depression and I, deeper in my “must be worthy” state of mind than ever, foolishly tried to fix it.
Looking back, the love I thought I deserved was one I paid for by always being able to find solutions to everything. As a result, I was always chasing a self-imposed goal, while simultaneously being unable to accept any other kind of love. Sounds obvious in hindsight that this couldn’t really go anywhere.
Today, also largely thanks to Micah, I’m learning to separate finding solutions to things on the one hand from being deserving of love on the other. And to open up to signs of love that may differ from my self-imposed definitions. It is a work in progress. But enough about me. What about you? Which kind of love do you think you deserve?