I chose toxic men because I too was toxic.
The Insider’s article, “Why intelligent and high-performing women fall for toxic partners,” got me thinking about my own relationships. I think I may have stayed in toxic relationships too long because I was also toxic.
After breaking up with my first love in college, I fell for the next guy simply because he made me forget about the first. I would hate for someone to tell me that they love me because I make them forget about someone else, but it happens. I’ve used guys as rebounds, and I’m certain that I have been a rebound before…because karma.
Because I wasn’t seriously attached to boyfriend #2, within two years I cheated on him, broke up with him and then married a whole ‘nother guy I dated previously in high school. As the saying goes, “hurt people, hurt people.” I hadn’t healed from boyfriend #1, and I brought that hurt to boyfriend #2 and probably into my marriage, which also ended in divorce.
My marriage was very complicated. There were lots of external factors that contributed to our divorce, but I never dealt with the hurt from boyfriend #1 and the guilt from boyfriend #2.
After I got divorced, I went on a dating spree, I went to the gym and I went to therapy, I took a solo trip to Italy, and I wrote a book about my pain…all the healing activities I should have done after boyfriend #1.
I don’t know if I completely healed from boyfriend #1, but I know that I entered into my current relationship less toxic. It is now also the longest romantic relationship that I’ve ever had with someone.
I am still working on myself, but I can say that I am much more considerate to my partner than I have been to other boyfriends. I am bringing much less toxicity into this relationship.
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