They say that you don’t know who your real friends are until you’re going through some shit; people are either for you or against you, with you or far from you. The real ones, A1s, day ones, are the ones that are hard to come by. The world we live in today have apps designed to find people based off of your geographical location; but, let’s be all the way real right now, those apps are used to pacify the addiction of finding real life connections through alter egos that people create to entice the opposite sex. Who are you really gettin’ with when you swipe to match yourself to that half naked dude/chick on your phone screen? Do you really trust that by swiping you’re finding a person of immaculate quality?
In real time, we can’t swipe left or right. In real time, we form conversations and hope that something of substance is formed; we can find commonalities that will bind us to this person in front of us. Feeding the addiction for real life connections is common amongst all of us. But how desperate are we to form these connections? Because I can guarantee that at one point in time, we’ve all compromised our beliefs and standards to fit the illusion in front of us. The illusion doesn’t have to be about the person, the illusion could be the expectations we have for the future we want to share with said person; it could be what we imagine our lives to be, what we want our lives to be, how we want things to play out, how soon we want these things to take place… The illusion could simply be the picture-perfect movie we direct for the life we want to share with this person.
At the end of the day it really all is just an illusion – what we think we know of people, how we think people feel, how we think people will respond and more than likely, how people respond can be an illusion. In the beginning dating is an illusion. We get to know people and hope we find common interests, sometimes pretending to like the same things because we get along in every other aspect, so why not this one too?
You go into any new relationship with blind faith that, if fortunate enough, leads to trust. You walk blindly getting to know a person, assessing how much information you can divulge about yourself, observing mannerisms in response to your vulnerabilities. Once that trust, deep and sacred, is stabilized, you let go completely and nothing is held in secret from that point on. You connect on all levels – physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. It’s almost like the universe placed this soul in your hands perfectly and you feel invincible. Nothing could go wrong, right? You don’t think about that, the question of how well do you know this person never crosses your mind. Why would it? You shared your vulnerabilities, undressing every inch of your skin, displaying your flaws and mistakes, standing there naked with guilt, sorrow, happiness, anger, sadness, and bliss. Is he/she just as vulnerable as you are? Your past, your present, and future all displayed on a timeline both you and he/she share. But, how truthful is he/she about their past and present?
I am an open book, on all accounts. I walk blindly with faith, having faith that the connections I am forming are respected by him as well. I don’t omit information, I am truthful about my mistakes, I am fully undressed for him to see what it is that he would be investing in. I would assume the same respect would be given to me. The thought of anyone using my past, my vulnerabilities, the mistakes I’ve made, the flaws that I have as ammo doesn’t cross my mind. What came before him, before us has made me the soul that I am today; wise soul, beautiful soul, distressed soul, brave soul, fathomless soul, intelligent soul.
Shit hits the fan. The universe has shifted. I stand there, undressed. Naked. I crouch down because the standing has now left me vulnerable in my vulnerabilities. Is this normal? I question every encounter. The beautiful words I was used to hearing has now turned to white noise. My present was now using my past as stones, throwing them at me. My present felt unsafe, it felt heavy with disbelief. My present became an endless vicious cycle of psychological pain.
Five Shifts Within the Universe1. Ambivalency – Wavering. Over compromised beliefs, standards, values and expectations. Apologies mean nothing when the habit continues until something gives; it either ends on a good note or a bad note. Nonetheless, good or bad, the relationship is already toxic. The toxicity turns into a game, a vicious cycle of break ups to make ups.2. Manipulation – Shared interests, values, goals, and dreams. Communication is heavy, but with beautiful intent. Although beautiful, sometimes the intent can be hidden with words that manipulate your thoughts in steady motion. It’s never noticed or conceivable because the trust is there. It’s noticed and conceived when the vicious cycle ends, the noise then falls silent, and the fog lifts.3. Deceit – Deceit can happen at any time, when it starts from the beginning they form truths that look no different from any other words of accusable deceit. Deceit from inception displays how valuable you are to him/her. It’s a form of disrespect. It’s an opinion on how insufficiently intelligent you are to them.4. Control – Never a partner. Always a follower. God forbid you decide to go left when he/she wants to go right. Calling all shots, using manipulation and deceit to control every situation, moment, thought, and feeling. You disobey, ambivalency refreshes itself and restarts the cycle.5. Power – The game of power takes place when all five shifts align perfectly. Weak mentally, spiritually, physically, and emotionally. Weakness is used as a tool to gain control, to deceive more, and to turn ambivalent situations into realistic “goals” turning relationships into situationships; this will only work if all rules and laws in this game are followed through. Break a rule, try to gain power back, the huntsman/huntress finds a way to trap with bigger game and even bigger rules.
Fake Love. Real Love. True Love. First Love. You’re the Only One Love. Illusions. Fantasies. There’s another shift in the universe. Tides turn. Voice is found. Strength is derived. Bravery speaks. Something beautiful happens.
How do you end the vicious cycle of a toxic relationship? How did you even get to this point? Toxic relationships are intertwined with the endless vicious cycles of break ups and make ups. Toxic relationships aren’t meant to last forever, there’s always a point in time when the person who is constantly taking the hits experiences a moment of clarity. He/she either gets there solo, or with a great supporting shoulder. Whether solo or by a supporting role, the moment of clarity brings on a sigh of relief.
With one big sigh of relief, she was able to adjust herself. She stopped allowing his power over her, over power her. He had this way of making her feel like she wasn’t good enough to save herself, good enough for anyone to see that she was worth loving. His words crawled under her skin and made its way to her every fiber. She soon embodied those things and her inner spirit sunk with all the good she had in her heart. She refused to believe that she wasn’t good enough. She looked in the mirror and her reflection was not of her; sadness in her eyes, weight on her shoulders, darkness in her heart, and a soul so heavy with self-doubt. His inner demons and insecurities projected unto her, wearing her skin. She cleansed herself of his vision of her, slowly. As each change emerged, a small piece of her inner being revealed itself.A love so real and pure does not destroy your being. It does not falter when things go left. Real love lives on even after the heartache and pains of being in a relationship. Love is unconditional. You fall out of love with someone, but you never wish ill on them, you never allow them to feel anything less than human, you never speak ill of them. Instead, unconditional love brings you to understand that you are both better off separated; it allows you to wish them well because their happiness still matters; it causes you to stop harming them with psychological warfare.
Fake love doesn’t take you far, what lies in the dark soon comes to light and the deceitful can no longer star in its own role. The deceitful will find a way to make you feel guilty for moving on and comment on how you’ve changed. But, the only thing that has changed is that you decided to move on without them.
The truth is, we never know who we’re investing our time, faith, hope, and love in. And, we don’t find out until some shit goes down. As cliché as it sounds, it holds such high truths. We can only hope that while getting to know the people we want to place roles in our lives, the outcome of it all stays in the beautiful illusion we create, overtime illusion manifesting into a beautiful reality. A reality that holds no ambivalent moments or situations created out of dramatic deceitful truths and a reality that holds equal power creating a partnership on all levels.
So, when going through the stages of love, falling, being, and staying in love – be true on all accounts, true to who you are, true with your intent, and true in your words. Take your time, don’t rush through anything, enjoy the illusion and fantasy while keeping your eyes and ears open. If it doesn’t feel right, if you already feel manipulated, if it’s controlling on one end, if it’s wavering, if you feel powerless in your own mind, walk away from the toxicity and let the fake shit go… Just let it go and breathe…