“Some people put walls up, not to keep people out, but to see who cares enough to knock them down.” -Unknown
Put the above quote as your Facebook status and I guarantee you’ll get at least a dozen “likes.” You won’t get any from me though. I couldn’t disagree more with the phrase. It gives individuals an excuse to remain insecure, difficult and unwilling to be vulnerable when it comes to love. Some people expect you to jump through hoops. They either have walls up as a result of past wrongdoings by those whom they trusted with their hearts, or they just like to put people through hell for a chance at love with them. Either way, they’re doing more harm than good to not just the individual who’s trying to win their heart, but more importantly to themselves. I understand that people have been hurt. We all have. But it doesn’t give us the right to make people feel like they’re trying out for an American Gladiators episode when they date us.You ever heard the phrase “hurt people, hurt people?” That’s one I’m more inclined to “like.”
The above quote was my philosophy. I used my pain from the past as a crutch; justifying my difficult and rejecting behavior as a way to “test” people and “weed out” the ones who couldn’t hang. The problem with this mode of thinking is that you’re allowing your past to dictate your present. I learned the hard way. There was one individual who saw me for who I was. What we could be if I just let go of my insecurities; which he put up with for the first year of our relationship. Once I determined that he “passed the test,” I let my guard down and we had a good next couple of years. But I put him through sheer hell. I’m talking passwords to his phone and emails, giving him a hard time when he went out with his friends. Overall not trusting him when he did absolutely nothing to deserve such treatment.
The point is that I shouldn’t have put him through all of that bullsh*t due to a few rotten apples from my past and frankly, there’s no doubt in my mind that my destructive behavior in the beginning of the relationship contributed to the demise of the relationship. To some, it may seem as though you don’t trust yourself when in reality you’re unsure of the person’s motives. However, my belief is that these defense mechanisms may backfire when you decide to tear down your emotional wall.
Here’s the deal. By taking someone who is undeserving through your emotional obstacle course, you risk losing not just a good person and potential life partner, but yourself. Every time you allow the pains from the past to dictate your future behavior with a new beau, you are giving power to the individuals who hurt you all over again. That’s the last thing anyone should want to do. It’s like allowing a horrible boss who you worked with years ago determine the salary, atmosphere and relationship with your new boss.I get it. Unlearning behaviors that you’ve found to be comforting is tough work. There’s a sense of control and power that comes with giving people a hard time. But how much are these walls really helping you? Does the degree of “protection” that they offer outweigh the level of joy that you are missing out on? Yes they may keep you from getting hurt, but they also keep you from experiencing true authentic love.
Filed under: Love and Relationships