Love Hurts

by Tamara Jacobs

The opportunity to love is a tremendous one. Those who have loved, even if they have lost, should consider themselves lucky. These are the types of phrases recently split up people hear all the time. I’m not saying that they’re untrue, what I am saying, is that if love is such a great experience than why can it hurt so bad?

People who are happily single or happily involved tend to forget how tough things can be. How that feeling of butterflies in your stomach isn’t something to get excited about, but in actuality is something that makes us want to throw up. It is these people who tend to be the ones delivering, broad, blanket, hokay poaky sentences about love. I’m not criticising them, I am one of them- or at least have been.

But like most sweeping statements and generalities, they overlook the harshness of the real situation. They don’t consider the pain, the worry, the hurt, the blow to our egos.

A friend called me the other day. She’s just started dating someone and really likes him. The vulnerability that she feels because of it makes her sick. She doesn’t like it. “Everyone’s vulnerable at the beginning” I tell her. “It’s this feeling that you’ll miss when you’ve been dating for seven years and nothing exciting happens anymore” I continue (see- I can be one of those people).  But the truth is, she’s worried, because she’s been hurt before and she doesn’t want to get hurt again. “It’s inevitable” I say.  There is no amount of control that you can place on yourself when it comes to these situations, because ultimately you’re going to feel what you feel, whether you keep it to yourself or tell someone else.

Another friend of mine told me that she recently went home with a guy who had a girlfriend. She never does this she said, but he led her to believe the relationship was open. She tried to tell herself it was just sex, but now she wants his attention, which of course, she’s not going to get. Why do people cheat I wonder? Is it because they are bored, stupid, or trying to spice up their uneventful lives? Maybe all three. My friend is still hurt though. Because no matter how cool she plays it, she’s still left with nothing. Even though she is the ‘other girl’, she’s still a girl who likes a guy, and is currently being ignored by him because he’s too scared to face her. Afraid of what he might do or say.

So to all of you hurting lovers, I am here to say that I get you. I know that you know that ultimately this feeling, this experience, this time in your life will wash over you and you’ll be the happily single or coupled person who can pass on vague advice to friends. But for now, love hurts. So give yourself the chance to have a little cry and listen to sappy music. We all do it. We’ve all been there.

This is a TedTalk I watched on the power of vulnerability and how it leads to human connectedness. I strongly recommend it.