Not like ‘other girls’: Embracing, loving yourself

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I’ll never be her, and I’m OK with that because I don’t want to be her — I like me. In the last relationship I was in, my partner constantly commented on things I was doing, usually wishing I was more like “other girls.” These “other girls” were either celebrities, past girlfriends or just people he was close with — but these were all people I could never be. It just took me a while to realize I didn’t want to be them.

The sad truth is that society already weighs down on us constantly with expectations around what “pretty girls” should look like, what a “happy couple” should be doing or what a “good partner” does in a “perfect relationship.” But this sets up unachievable expectations that lead you down a rabbit hole of trying to follow a false narrative and ultimately being let down. Many people say we need to put in our imaginary earplugs, throw on shades and ignore society. Personally, I think this is unhealthy. I recommend tackling these issues head-on. I think it’s OK to read all the posts about what makes a “happy couple” and what a “perfect relationship” looks like, but the trick is to see through these utopian posts for what they really are: imaginary realities. Real life isn’t like that. Perfect relationships in real life have ups and downs, partners in real life have fears and insecurities and work through them together. Achieving happiness could be a romantic trip to Venice for some and a slow dance in the parking lot to no music for others. Being in a relationship is supposed to mean that the person likes you for all your flaws and likes you because you aren’t like everyone else. Not that they want you to be like everyone else.

I also never understood when people would say you need to love yourself before loving someone else. I thought this was ridiculous because wasn’t the person you loved supposed to teach you how to love yourself? Or maybe I secretly thought you wouldn’t have to love yourself if someone was already doing it for you. Either way, I was wrong. The reason you need to learn to love yourself first is that you need to be confident about who you are. You need to know you’ll never be “her” or “them,” but that you don’t really want to be someone else either! You want to be your beautiful, loving, radiant self — and no one else. You don’t need to change for anyone but yourself.

If you’re constantly being compared, take a step back and remember that you aren’t expected to change. Communicate with your partner and let them know how you feel because they may have no idea how much it’s affecting you. Look at posts on the internet for inspiration if you want, but not for guidance or a reality check. Look at yourself, and love the person you are. Obviously, this is easier said than done, but the point is to start now.

You don’t want to be like “the other girls” — you should want to be wholeheartedly you.

Contact Natalia Brusco at [email protected].