She started dating when she was aged 20 and between then and now, she had being in four relationships. The longest was with her first love. They dated for three years before parting ways. After that time, it just went downhill in the dating scene for her. Jude had jilted her. She thought they were going to get married, have kids and live happily ever after; only problem, that was not in his books. He cheated on her, not once but twice and with the same person.
That was a betrayal she could not forgive and it led to the demise of that relationship, but that experience tainted her other relationships. She became hesitant of giving all of herself in other relationships. She always held back and the guys could sense that, hence, they left after a few months. So she had been single more times than she had been in a relationship, after that first relationship.
There was nothing wrong with Alice’s reaction to her first boyfriend’s cheating on her, what was wrong was that she allowed that past affect her future relationships. She started to see other guys through the same lens as her cheat of a first boyfriend and was thus, not willing to give all of herself in subsequent relationships.
Her last boyfriend was the one who stayed long enough to explain what she was doing to herself. He told her how she was carried a chip on her shoulder, tried to monitor his movements and got angry if he somehow came up short in her expectations. He told Alice, how these words, she used rang in his mind all the time, “you men are all the same.”
She had tarred him with the same brush as her first boyfriend and expected the worst of him, when he was just being himself. He told her that she was not ready to learn who he truly was, just wanted to believe her own version of who he was; which was doing him a disservice as there was more to him and what he wanted to give her, but he could not continue in a relationship where he was already condemned, even before he started.
Alice’s baggage was her distrust of men, brought on by the cheating saga of her first boyfriend. She used it as protection from further hurt but it stopped her from enjoying her future relationships, she worried more that guys were going to cheat on her than anything else.
But there is good news, you can let go of your baggage; your emotional baggage, if you want to and you should, considering how toxic those things are.
The first step you take is to identify the emotional baggage you are carrying around. If you don’t come to a place of personal recognition of your baggage, you will never be able to do anything about it.
You need to know whether; it came from your family back ground, the relationship of your parents, your siblings and their partners or your own past relationships, as it was in the case with Alice. This involves some introspection but you need to do it, if you are to let go of the past and start to see the light in today.
You then need to determine what you are going to do about it. For Alice, when her last boyfriend told her the real reason he was breaking up with her, was because of her complete distrust of men, it spoke to her depths, to a part of her that had been dormant for a while. She listened to what her subconscious had been trying to tell her for ages; that she was behaving irrationally towards the men in her life.
That she was treating them as though they were the one who cheated on her. It was a sad case. After ruminating over the matter for months, she recognized that it was true that she had been hurt, but it was sad that she was still carrying the hurt about and lashing out at any man, given the smallest opportunity. Not only, did she recognize it, she also set out to change the story. She resolved to give herself some time to heal. After which, the next relationship she would go into would be different, as she would have been able to forgive not only her ex boyfriend but also herself.
This next step will be a bit hard but it is still doable. You need to let go. It is easy to say, but doing it can become a problem. For weeks after Alice determined that she was going to forgive herself and her ex, it was a struggle. The struggle not to get into another relationship before she had truly healed; the struggle to accept that her ex was the one who behaved badly, that he was at fault, that he had cheated on her, because he had a roving eyes, not because, she was not enough for him. This stage meant, she dug up unpalatable memories and accepted them, and let them go, no matter how hard it was. To encourage you, remember that what you are holding onto is nothing compared to what you should have.
Apart from letting go, take a step of faith. To get the man of her dreams, Alice needed to get back in the dating scene. But not before she had gone through the other stages. This is the best part. Now, you know that your life is different, because you have decided to break free from the emotional baggage of the past and move on in life, with so much positive energy around you. At this stage, Alice would no longer expect the men in her life to cheat on her; she would look forward to the goodies that come from being in a relationship. She would focus on the man in her life, not the ghost of her ex, she had been dealing with.
These are some of the steps you can take to let go of that baggage from your past relationship.
To enjoy today, you need to let go of yesterday.