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I wanted to be loved the way it was shown in movies. But every time I experienced something similar like the female lead; I didn’t love it at all.
Trigger Warning: Self-harm, mental and physical abuse.
What is love? I wondered. Ever since I was a kid, I craved for love.
I looked for it everywhere I went and every time I thought I found something remotely close to it, it withered away like the petals of a rose, only leaving me with thorns that went skin deep, cuts that left scars and calls that left me with tears.
For me, love was something you get from a man, like the movies. I wanted to be loved the way the main leads of movies were loved. But every time I experienced something the female lead loved; I didn’t love it. I didn’t even like it when I should be screaming through the rooftops about how much I loved it.
But why don’t I like the aggressive pushing, forcing and coercing that I should be loving?
There must be something wrong with me.
I must be broken.
I needed to learn how to be normal cause being a woman who loves and expressly talks about finding love and romance is hard enough and adding the fact that I didn’t like the way I got romanced with is only going to get me some harsh criticism about how I am high maintenance and how I should lower my expectations.
So, I lowered my standards and went for guys who didn’t even put in the bare minimum but were ready all the time to put their hands on me and even though I never liked it, I was never brave enough to say no.
I chugged alcohol to cure myself and to be more likeable. I danced to impress the crowd and I dressed to impress, and I talked sexually to make myself more desirable. None of it made me fulfilled. Every single time, a guy told me I needed to change something, I did my best to change it.
And every single change ended up with a scar I gave myself because I wasn’t strong enough to go through the hurdles every woman has to go through to be loved.
But why am I not loved?
Why doesn’t anybody love me?
Every night, I would wonder, why am I not enough? My head would go to places so evil, it would end with a cut on my hand and tears wetting my pillow and a scarring wound on my hand in the morning.
But like an awakening, when the magical stroke of my mom’s hand caressing my hair woke me up one day, I realized I was looking for something I already had!
Here, standing before me, was a woman who loved me unconditionally, who would love me the way I am no matter how I looked or how I behaved. That was love.
I gave her a hug and went out of my room to brush my teeth to meet my sister in the hallway to see her frown at me and push me playfully to realize that she would fall to the ground and cry endlessly if anything were ever to happen to me.
Here, I had two women who would cry for days if they saw the cuts on my hand, endlessly for days. But I was out there begging guys who asked me to cut myself again and told me how my scars and cuts made me look ugly, and the worst part of it was that I believed them.
I believed every single word coming out of their mouth while turning a blind side to all the love I already had, and I was pushing way that love. It made me realize how wrong I was, love comes from people who wish you nothing, the best.
Love comes from people who always are worried and concerned about you, and love comes from people who would kill for you. NOT someone who would make you want to kill yourself. In my case, love was just around the corner, and I was too stubborn to turn and head around and look at it.
I realized I needed to pull myself together and be better for myself and my family. It was not easy. I had to stop drinking, and I had to stop looking for validation from men. I tried and failed numerous times before I could finally become better, and yes, I did like the way the female leads were loved in the movies.
Movies like Seetharamam, Notebook, Bombay and I will hope maybe someday that I will get to experience something like that. But for now, the kind of love I have for myself and the kind of love I get from my family is more than enough for me, and it makes me happier than any of the men in my life ever made me.
Image source: Still from Grey Walaa Shade from Manmarziyaan, Music Video, edited on CanvaPro
If our readers or someone our readers know is self-harming and in an emotionally vulnerable place, please try to seek help from doctors and concerned authorities.
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