Many people define themselves by their relationship. Their status, “single” or “taken” or, if you’re on Facebook, “it’s complicated.” There’s really either “single” or “taken.” Those who use the “it’s complicated” button, I find, are merely afraid to admit that they’re single and it’s goin’ nowhere. In society, our need and hunger for labels is really quite overwhelming. It’s not “official” until he’s your “boyfriend” or she’s your “girlfriend.” Especially as teens, for those who are in high school, we are constantly being watched and judged by our labels.
I was recently stripped of my label. I’m no longer his “girlfriend.” Now we’re just “friends.” We occasionally “hook-up.” Did I mention he broke up with me just last week? He dumped me, yet I still care for him and he for me. It’s hard, admitting that your label has been taken away from you, and I have had to face that slap in the behind.
“Getting over it” is possibly one of the hardest things someone can do. I walked into school the day after it happened, faced with people saying to me “it’ll get better, I promise.” Well, I didn’t want it to get better. I wanted it to just BE better. I left school early because I couldn’t bear walking through the halls, hoping he would run out behind something random and just maul me the way he once did. Needless to say, that didn’t happen, and every time it didn’t I would break just a little more. I went home early. It’s okay to do that. It’s okay to grieve the loss of what was once there, what you could once hold in your arms and whisper to. You will face your hard days, and your good days. I heard it said to me, and didn’t listen to a word of it until I experienced it.
Although, not many people are as lucky as I. After a week and a half, I talk to my “ex-boyfriend,” I’ve hooked up with him four times (which was more than we had in a month and a half), I tell him all my woes of the day and he tells me his. We didn’t end on bad terms, so it has been hard for me to tell him that I hate him whenever I get frustrated with our lack of emotional attachment to each other. Some call it “love,” and I admit, I did once upon a time. I still believe that we had “love” for each other, but sometimes things change. Our labels much change with them. Coping with them is okay. Leaving school, buying random clothes for yourself as a confidence boost, listening to music and sobbing. It’s all part of getting over the “break-up.” It’s all part of grieving the death of something that you probably built your life around. There will be little things that set you off on a crying fit. Like when your guy friends say something stupid like “i want to make out with *Tim and whisper that I love him in his ear,” and you’ll say back “I used to do that,” and he’ll say “you used to make out with your best friend and whisper in their ear you loved them?” Little things like that will stick in your mind. It will also stick in your mind when you see your friends there to help you. Especially if you’re like me and hang out with a bunch of guys, you’ll see they really do care for you and it’s amazing when they do.
So chug along. And if you haven’t been through a “break-up” yet, enjoy every moment you have. Don’t get upset about the little things, because some would kill to have those back. Define yourself by “you.” I cringe at using the word “you,” not only because I never use it in my essays, but also because I am giving in to society’s hunger for a label. I am generalizing the reader of this article, and for that I apologize. Whether whoever is reading is “single,” “taken,” or in a situation where “it’s complicated,” (a.k.a. single and having a hard time admitting it), realize that defining yourself is knowing who you as a person is. Just because your label changes, doesn’t mean you as a person has changed.