by Lauren Collinson
“Lauren, you need to love yourself first before anyone else can love you.”
Every time I hear this line from someone or see it on some inspirational Instagram post, I scream inside. I usually drop some F-bombs as well.
Seriously, f*ck you.
It always makes me think back to a friend of mine who is now married to the same person she has been with since she was 18 years old. She constantly gave me this message. She has never dated. She has never experienced rejection. She has never had her heart broken by men who decide they don’t want commitment, or men who lose interest for no good reason. She has always been safe and secure in her relationship with that one man.
But I find that these are often the exact people spouting this bullsh*t advice that I need to love myself more, every time I lament about my perpetually single status.
I know they mean well. I really do.
However, my question is this—do they even know what “love yourself” means?
Why do so many women tell other women that they need to do this in order for someone to find them worthy of love and compassion? Where and when did that start? And why don’t we give this same advice to men who run away at the first sight of a relationship challenge?
I think many of us interpret it as needing to fix ourselves first, which can be an extremely hurtful message. In the beginning of my singlehood, I would agree that there were definitely things I needed to fix. I needed to learn that I was strong and that I could fight for myself. I needed to learn that no matter what, I would be okay. I needed to learn that I had an identity outside of a relationship, and that it was a damned good one.
But several years later, after doing all this work on my mind, body, and soul, I am still single. So what gives? Do I still not “love myself” enough?…
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Source: Elephant Journal
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