What My Broken Engagement Taught Me

broken-engagement

For most people this would have been a sad experience. Maybe it was a little bittersweet for me, but if anything it was an awakening. Difficulties are to be expected when there is a change in your life such as calling off a wedding, but I have made the best of it by allowing it to teach me a few things.

  1. I am not ready to be married. I was only twenty-two when the proposal happened. Before I was engaged, I had wedding bells chiming in my head. It seemed like the next logical step in my past relationship, but I was far from being right. I was so young, and at the point of the actual proposal I was asking myself, “why are we doing this?” Amidst the congratulations, we received a lot of “you guys are so young” comments. They  were right. I barely knew myself, and I knew we would both make a huge change of who we are soon. I was not ready to be tied down to one person for the rest of my life. I did not want to go home and play house every night. I craved freedom, and that is what I went after.
  2. I want to experience being single. I was never single for long. Since I was fifteen, I was in a relationship with someone with only a few weeks to myself in between. I am a very free spirited person. I do not necessarily enjoy answering to someone. I want to do what I want when I want to do it. I do not want to have to justify why I need a girl’s night or a night to myself. I have been single for seven months now, and I have had the time of my life.
  3. Love is not enough. You may argue with me on this one, but love is never enough. It takes a lot of time and effort to make a relationship work, and your overall happiness does not stem directly from love itself. I made a huge sacrifice while in my last relationship, and I soon realized I do not need to live states away from my family. Love will not keep you from arguing or becoming detached from your significant other. When the cons outweigh the pros, love becomes microscopic. You will continue to love the person, but you will fall out of love with them.
  4. I am stronger than I allowed myself to believe. I never thought I would have the strength to take my ring off and walk away, but that is what I did. I lived in fear of hurting another person, but I knew the initial shock of me leaving would be less painful than me being distant our entire marriage.  I had to remain rational about the situation, and the relationship was no longer allowing me to grow.
  5. I do not enjoy the pressure of starting a family. I am not sure if I ever want children of my own, and I was being hounded about if I was going to work or be a stay at home mom after the wedding. His mother told me that she knows I will be a great mother because I was great with my two dogs. No one could keep the fact that it is my body and my decision in mind. Having children is an intimate decision between a couple, and I feel it is too personal of a topic for outsiders to bring up.
  6. I am still finding myself. After the breakup of my first long term relationship, I decided to do a lot of soul searching. It continued throughout my last relationship, and I was evolving into a different person. I was not the same person my ex fell in love with, but neither was he. He is not a terrible person, but he is not the man I want to spend the rest of my life with. I need a companion who is more similar in certain aspects. I want someone who thrives off of adventure. Someone who shares similar values and beliefs as myself. Someone who has the same ultimate goal for a relationship.
  7. Different beliefs will eventually cause problems. He is very atheist, and I am agnostic. Allow this to be a lesson for those of you who are under the impression that these two terms are different. He possesses an absolute belief that God does not exist and religion is nothing more than a hoax. I remain open minded to the idea of there being a higher power. With my open mindedness, I refuse to persuade that my belief is better than another person’s. I was overwhelmed with pressure when he would speak about religion. He hated the idea that I remained skeptical, and he would not support the evidence I had for my opinion. His way was the right way, and anyone who thought differently was below him. That is not how religion is supposed to work.
  8. My mental health is more important than a fairy tale romance. I struggled with my depression and anxiety throughout my relationship with my ex. I am not using it as an excuse, but it does add difficulties to relationships with anyone. I knew I would not be able to find a stable relationship until I found stability within myself.
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