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Throughout my past, a lot of things have happened. I had boyfriends, I had relationship problems, and personal problems, all of this causing mental and trust issues that eventually would bite me in the ass. Throughout those personal and romantic relationships, trust would be broken many times, which kept me from wanting to be in love. I hadn't said "I love you" to a boyfriend since my first real relationship. That is, until I met Mike.*
In June of 2015, I met Mike. We met on an online dating website and immediately clicked. He was handsome, lovable, and he made me laugh nonstop. We would talk about books—Harry Potter mostly—and how we started to like each other within the first hour of talking. The one thing I can remember the most about him was that big goofy smile and oh, how I loved it when he would show me it. He never liked his smile and still doesn't. I still love it. After about a week of texting back and forth, he asked me out and I gladly agreed, and about a week after that, he said he loved me, only I didn't say it back.
It took me a long time to accept that he actually loved me and that I loved him back, but once I realized I did love him, I never stopped. He knew how to open me up and how to make me feel emotions that weren't anger or sadness anymore. There was never a dull moment with us, especially when we kept breaking up and getting back together. This I can take full credit for. I was the one who always broke up with him, and I would like to blame it on my trust issues and all of my other issues, but it's just who I became to be. I was starting my senior year of high school, I was "popular," and I had college to look forward to still. It was also the fact that I still wasn't supposed to be dating anyone.
After going back and forth every couple of months, August of 2016 finally came and I thought we were breaking up for good,, because I was moving off to college and kind of falling for someone else I was casually talking to. We broke up, but two weeks after, it was my birthday and of course he had to text me to wish me a happy birthday. After that simple text, we started talking yet again, but that's all we did. At the end of September, I decided to stop playing games and tell him we needed to cut off all communication once and for all. That's when it happened.
We were on the phone and he said those five simple words: "Grace, I cheated on you." I was very calm, but it was a confused calm. I didn't understand what he said, like it was some sort of dream or like I was just frozen in time. I don't remember how the exact conversation went, but I know that I asked a lot of questions and that I was calm until the very end. He told me it happened in May of that year with a coworker/"friend" and that it was a mistake and it that it meant nothing. Little did I know, the lies wouldn't stop there. That also wasn't the only time he cheated on me. Technically the only physical time, but I was to find out that he cheated on me many more emotional times.
I would find out these things that he did by my own detective work after we started dating again in November of 2016. Each time, I would confront him and he would tell me truths, but also more lies, too. The girl he cheated on me with was not just a friend. They talked about having a relationship and never stopped talking after what they did, unlike what I was told. I found many conversations with other girls, too, but it's like I wanted to find more. I couldn't stop trying to search for more. When we started dating again, we had an agreement that he wouldn't talk to girls anymore until I felt comfortable with it again and he completely agreed, yet he never stopped talking to them; they were just friends. I read the messages, but still it upset me that he agreed but still did it.
Finally we move in together in June of 2017, and so many things were better after, until after I thought I finished all of the snooping. But I found out in March of 2017 he was trying to flirt with another girl again. I can't tell you how long I cried after finding this out. I thought we were solid now, nothing could go wrong anymore. I found out all of the lies and we were happy. I was wrong. In March of this year, it was terrible for our relationship. We were bickering and arguing and full out fighting with each other over everything and anything. Our fighting wasn't necessarily because of him, but of how insecure I felt because of everything he did and how depressed I got because of those insecurities didn't help our fighting.
I'm not giving him excuses for what he did to me. There is no excuse for what he did, but now I know why he did what he did and that is all I ever really needed. I am a person who needs to know things and needs reasons for them, too. We always have had one problem in our relationship, and that's communication, we never worked on it, but that's because we didn't know that was our problem. We were young and naïve to think nothing was going to go wrong, and I was naïve to think that what we had was a perfect relationship, because it's anything from perfect.
I'm not here to tell you that you should give second or third or fourth chances to your partner, because you shouldn't, but I never give up on something or someone I love, either. Everybody makes mistakes. I made mistakes, still do, and always will. Mistakes are inevitable, but how you handle them and handle yourself will determine if you make those same mistakes in the future.