It took me 42 years to figure this out.
Imagine if I had figured it out earlier, I would have had so much less rejection, pain, and grief.
Oh and lets add humiliation in the mix.
Why do we chase people who don’t want to be with us?
What is up with us?
I really don’t know how else to say this but it is almost as if we are asking for it.
And let me tell you, I am including me in this group of people. I am the worst of all.
I will ignore every signal, sign, nudge that this person or people are not interested in spending time with me, until the universe comes and hits me over the head with something so obvious and so painful that I have to run away.
Am I the only one?
And of course there is the other argument that I have told myself many times. Well If I lose weight then it will be different. Or when I am more successful then I will definitely be accepted and wanted. And guess what happens. When we drop the pounds, get the job, and do and be all the things that we thought made that person or people not want us, they still reject us.
But..but..but…how is that possible.
I am now all the things I thought kept them from liking me, loving me wanting me, and they still don’t want to be with me.
So here is the deal.
Here is where we get this completely wrong.
The people we are not meant to be with, will always reject us and turn us down.
We can never ever be good enough for them, if we were not good enough in the beginning. (Click to Tweet!)
We need to realize this and when we get a sign, a gut feeling, a nudge that this person is not for us we must look for the exit sign right there and then.
No wondering how we can make ourselves better so they see us.
You see there are so many people who actually would want to be with us, and it is possible that because we have been so obsessed with these other folks we have completely missed the ones who loved us to begin with.
Next time you get a gut feeling that someone is ignoring you or that you are not connecting with them somehow, don’t keep trying.
They could be your colleagues, your peers, your family or someone you are really attracted to. Know that it is for the best if you don’t pursue or turn your world upside down just to get their approval.
You could be the queen or the king and still be ignored and not loved.
As someone told me lately.
It is not personal. 😉
Now go and be with the people who want to be with you. Anybody else…well you know what to do. Don’t be with them.
PS. Live your life with attitude and confidence after loss. You earned it. Grab the book SECOND FIRSTS.
This speaks to me on every level. Thank you for posting what are essentially the things I need to say outloud to myself. I am bookmarking this post and will read it daily to keep on the right path after losing my husband. Thank you.
Paige I am so happy to hear this. And glad it helped so much.
Such wisdom in this message! I so wish our children and young adults could embrace this knowing at an early age. So many disappointments in life could be avoided or perhaps “softened.” And more importantly, the precious time we have lost while chasing or pursuing. More wisdom to ponder on……..
This serves me well today! I just finished my 40 days of rethinking and turning inward to look at me! I let go of someone who I loved deeply but knew deep down that they felt different and every sign was there! I didn’t listen for almost 2 years and finally got the courage to walk away 40 days ago! I still feel the sting of the pain sometimes but I cannot tell you the growth and happiness I feel today! I am finally after 44 years facing me and all alone. Oh I have done it before but not quite like this! I finally see my worth and know I am made for greater things! I know that even though we shared many things and I wasn’t loved the same and it was EXTREMELY difficult to let go I did it out of love not only for me but for him! No greater love than that! I am so excited to see what the future holds for me! I will find the same when I am completely ready for now it’s all about me! Much love for the message! It was perfect for my 40 day release day!
You are so courageous and brave. A true hero.
Kim – thank you for posting this. I am currently in a similar situation with a man I have loved at a distance (good friends) for 20 years because we were married to others. We divorced at the same time and then had a solid relationship for 3 years when suddenly ended it. He has continued to contact me and spend time with me for the last 2 years when HE had the time. I have only felt alive during those random interactions (once or twice a month) and lived everyday waiting for the next. He has just in the last week told me that he has met someone else and will no longer be contacting me so he can focus on the new relationship. I have always felt he was the one love of my life. I’m at the point now where I am forced to accept it is over , not sure how to begin moving on knowing he won’t contact me again in a couple weeks. Your message gives me the slightest bit of hope that I may some day be able to overcome this loss which has left me broken and fragile and terrified of a future without him.
If thia is true. .. then I dont want to b around anyone except my kids and siblings. … I dont even feel like making friends anymore as every relationship feels like a lie… just folks bound by protocol and nicities… I dont feel the sincerity in anyone
I so hope you find trust and love again. It is there for everyone.
I’ve been guilty of this myself, many times. And, there are so many facets to this same problem. I’ve slammed the door (AGAIN) in the face of a so-called “friend” within the last 24 hours. The insane thing with this guy was, rather than rejecting me, instead clinging to me desperately, while telling me how I needed to be, in order to live a better life….. All the while, flushing his OWN life down the toilet with alcohol and a violent, psychotic temper. I had to let go of the feeling that some divine force wanted me to HELP this man, since he didn’t want help, and just wanted to drag me down to his level.
Erin people with big hearts like yours get trapped into the savior mentality. We want to help everyone but not everyone can be helped. Glad you walked away.
I believe I did that behavior non-stop with my husband (ex) minus this drinking. I think I feel that if I save others they will need me. Turns out- they resent it and often I under function so they seem wiser or stronger.
Finally- I stopped with him and divorced him. My daughter is thriving. I have my dignity back in exchange for loneliness and hope.
Big hug to you.
I am 46 years old and just this week I had such an epiphany about why most people DON’T want to be with me. I have had to let two friendships go in my 40’s due to the women being addicted to men & sex to the point that they let their children suffer. I’m not even a mother but I know that’s despicable.
And I said to myself, I wouldn’t be friends with a drug addict, this is no different.
There are drama addicts, and pain addicts, and while I feel for these people, they are simply not emotionally healthy, and have their own paths to heal before they are.
In the meantime, I cannot worry about them and let them take down my life.
And since being in my 40’s I was part of a huge women’s group in NYC and some FB groups and I see that most of the population is weak and not adventurous and not able to live their own lives and play the victim card and that is just not me.
These people are not my tribe.
I have a few that are, and now I no longer care when I meet people and a natural friendship doesn’t unfold.
Sometimes they do and most times they don’t.
Stop caring and let the universe bring you your people.
Love your attitude.
This man has been in my life for 27 years. Three years ago he began going to the Philippines having numerous affairs with very young women. I have known deep down for many years that he doesn’t love me but I continue to try & hold on.
He doesn’t deserve anyone like me. I am caring, loving & loyal to the extreme. I still continue to do everything for him but today he said he is not going to stop chatting with those women. I am devastated again! I guess I thought I could win out by remaining by his side and earn his love.
God help me, I need some real help with this. He shows all of the signs of a psychopath; no feelings, never gives back, no remorse, never says he’s sorry, etc. his physical health is not good, memory is bad so I keep thinking he needs me. We share 3 dogs but I am the one who takes care of them myself.
Take the first step towards leaving him. What is it? Pack a bag. Look for a new place. Small step. Closer to a live without him.
WOW. Just discovered your site today when I’ve just been dealing with many of these feelings. I lost my husband 15 months ago and have felt my life turned upside down by people I thought were my friends but apparently only worshiped my husband and have treated me like dirt since he died. Maybe death is somehow like divorce, when people seem to think they have to choose only one member of the couple to support or something. Another dear friend reminded me not to take it personally, and that I was doing great and not to let it knock me down. It’s hard but she is right. And YOU are right. Thanks for this.
Divorce is a huge loss, and society does not empathize as much which makes it even worse. I am sending you much much love.
Divorce has been this way for me though I chose it for good reasons. As the woman who always claimed that my best friends were my family I have been disappointed, even shocked to see them move away and on as we grow differently.
This page speaks to my life- and I have reflected on it daily for the past few years.
Divorce is, indeed, death without the recognition or support in many ways. I often think that more- than anything- we are not meant to be alone on this earth. I have always had a boyfriend, a best friend or my husband. Now~ I have my daughter and am gathering companionship here and there.
You are so right – no one brings casseroles when you are divorced – and it is worse than a death, because they want to leave you and are still around. Things have to change and people need to know that divorced people need support too.
Thank you thank you thank you this made me so much more sure of the reason I’m going back home <3
Your message was just what I needed right now. I was in a marriage for 29 years and I never felt cherished or loved then a couple weeks ago my ex husband’s current 56 year old girlfriend posts a picture on her fb page from 1996, of her and my husband together when he and I were in our 20th year of marriage. He always denied involvement with other women but this particular hateful person posted it recently just to rub it in my face that she was with him again. This reduced me to a bit of a depression lately and I was feeling that I want to get some revenge. But the more I let myself work through the hurt and not wanting to go down to her level, I realize she did this because she feels unloved herself, after all, he isn’t asking her to marry him, told her he would never marry again. Still, why did I have those feelings of hurt, depression and crying asking myself, why don’t I have someone who cares about me and wants to spend time with me. I’m a great person, a strong, independent woman, friendly and outgoing. I’m not beautiful but I am attractive and interesting and in good health and shape. I’ve been divorced 10 years and there has been no one else. I am 66 now, am I going to be single now til I die?
I put it down to the way we are brought up, be polite to everyone is taught, be nice to everyone regardless of the sort of person they are. You are taught to shut down your instincts to be polite. By the time you’re adults, your instinct is immobilised
I love your site layout and your font for entering comments. I think this is pretty spot on. Sometimes, for many reasons, people choose not to be with us. It can even be because they are intimidated by us or afraid of us – or that we’re with someone else already. I’ll add a devil’s advocate point of view in the mix – sometimes there are connections with people so strong that even if you choose not to be together, you’ll feel an “invisible chord” with them and love and care for them even when you’re not together. Something like a twin flame. Those will knock you silly as you try and understand them 🙂
Love and blessings to you – thanks for sharing this.
My wife completed this homework assignment 42 years ago, when she wrote in my yearbook that I was a sweet guy, whom she had always watched, thinking she would never see me again. It took a few months, because I was dating someone else as t the time. That didn’t work out, started hanging with my wife and her friends, we him I knew better, remembered what she wrote and a year and a half later we were married. That union lasted 39 years, ending with her death last year. And hopefully there may be a chance history is repeating itself. . .
So tonight while waiting for my daughter who was at a two hour practice, I went for a walk in the local neighborhood. I was coming back after walking three miles and rolling in sweat. This elderly woman walked out of her home and stopped me, her name was Greta. She rambled on about living in the house for fivety years, how her late husband fixed it up before he died. How he dead suddenly, and happy. How her 14 year old boy shot himself in his bedroom thirty years ago, she was 73 worked as the lunch lady at the high school next door. Wow, I knew more about her then many of my friends and co workers. I was smiling, I actually told her how I was a widow also, and was waiting to down size after my children go to college. We spoke so honestly to each other, then wished each other a good night. She was very special and amazing.
How is it that you always know just what we (what I) need? I wrote this this morning after falling through the storm last night.. As much as I am able to give back… I know we are not alone in this.. I hope this helps someone as you have helped me..
Grief does strange things to a body. It is a full on assault.. punching, kicking, clawing, scratching, hitting kind of beast (ask anyone who has stopped eating and gained weight or self medicated with food and lost weight or who has had hair loss in clumps or simply had their hair turn grey, or you have muscles that seize and tighten in parts of your body until movement feels impossible and the pain feels unbearable) there are other things but you get the idea.
Grief doesn’t fight fair it takes anything and everything away from you that it can which is why I fought back! choosing to “do grief differently” with exercise (kickboxing is a hell of a drug), yoga (because..I needed to learn to breathe), eating to nourish my body and yes, the running. It is how I fought back. This, this was how I was going to beat grief or so I thought.
What I hadn’t realized was that while I have spent the last several years focused on the body grief was looking for a back door. Grief does even stranger things to the mind.
This is where you find me today choosing to do what I must to fight back here too.
It is time to tell the truth to myself. I have allowed grief to torture my mind long enough. I have spent months and months and months not heeding the signs, ignoring the prompting of the Universe to let go little E.
I have raged raged RAGED against this.
In the time that has followed losing Middles and trying to learn how to navigate this “new normal” for myself there was another. Soldier. (You have heard me mention him a time or two)…The man who once upon a time loved me, once upon a time there was a hope and a future with him, a cottage in the South of France overlooking the sea where we would grow old watching the world in each other’s arms. The one. Once upon a time changed that day, THE story ended in a military convoy in Kabul when the bomb exploded and took his memory and altered his life. The truth is he died that day but he didn’t. He lived. He looked the same, spoke the same he even felt the same but he isn’t that man he is someone different.
What we had died and I could not, would not see it. It was more than my little shattered heart could take. It was more than my mind could comprehend. So I refused to see it telling myself that he loved me once, he would again and then I proceeded to do like I have always done I would fight for it! I would change the outcome, the story would still have the happy ending.. I shut out the truth feeling the pain of his rejection of his changed nature. Broken promises over and over and still I waited, heart open..thinking if I do one more thing it will be enough, that it will change the outcome but the man I had shared everything with and he with me no longer tells me the truth and this man? he has lied.. He is not the man I loved who once upon a time loved me.
Zoowie little E, no wonder you don’t want to deal. Take a deep breath.. now one more.
This is heavy.. too heavy for my heart but the only way to create an exit for the grief from my thoughts is to bear it all so that grief no longer has a back door in.. No more rage. It is time to let in the light and let it go.
I have been so focused on changing the outcome of fighting grief by my own strength and beating the monster back that I have not paid attention. I did not want to see the truth that this holding on to an ideal is what is keeping me from finding life in loss. How it is preventing me from love.. especially loving myself. I have allowed grief to steal my joy. Grief has rooted deeply into my thoughts and makes me afraid that if I let go.. love will never come again that starting over again at this time in my life (I am not a kid anymore) is futile…that everything I was changing about me was for someone else so who am I supposed to be now? And here is the deepest darkest secret of my heart..that my story has no value in telling.. The book that I thought I would write was a story.. our story of love conquering death and illness and amnesia to be found again.. (it really does sound like movie plot).. but the story have that ending does it?
Let go little E.
It is time to allow myself the opportunity to step out of the ring.. no more hits in the face and in the heart from grief. I do not need to fight. In letting go I can find space for all of the things I need to heal both my body and my mind. I can find acceptance in the process of becoming who I am. I can love myself. I can be the hero of my own beautifully tragic wonderfully full and incomplete story.
I don’t truly know if in writing this it is for you or for me.. a little bit of both perhaps. I know we all are struggling with something.. we all share that in common and it is big and ugly and there are moments when it threatens to consume us.. but it wont. Because we.. you and I are in this together and if.. in some small way this can be a catalyst for letting go? then it is all worth it and in letting go we (I) can let in…
love and light.
What do you do if the people that want to be with you are not ones you want to be with?
Thank you ….. I was beginning to think I was the only one who did this….. Thank you again
I so needed this today! My husband died 4 years ago. I started dating again about 10 months after he died. I have had a few relationships, they were fun, but not THE ONE. Last year, I met THE ONE, or so I thought. We started planning a life together, talking about retirement, building a house in the country. It was all good, or so I thought. 2 months ago his mother got sick and he, out of the blue, told me to move on. Told me I would be better off without him. And, he virtually disappeared. No word, no more phone calls, nothing. I have been struggling with this. I have been severely depressed. Feeling unloved, unwanted, and unworthy.
My friends all tell me, he wasn’t THE ONE. I have been having a difficult time coming to grips with that. Today’s letter from you in my in-box was like a hammer to the head. I think I can finally start to let go.
This is so important to me, I’m learning to drop the toxic people out of my life, people that I’ve given the power to make me feel horrible. It actually happened to me just the other day with a family member. I woke up feeling okay which is huge for me, then I had a call from a family member and boom it ruined my day! I realized what had happened. It reinforced that I have to get these people out of my life or I won’t make it. Thank you so much. I am sitting here realizing that I am on to something with Second Firsts!
Wow, this really struck a chord with me! My husband died 5 months ago very unexpectedly, and as the saying goes….you find out who your friends are. The friends I really thought I could count on disappeared, and couldn’t understand why. Now I get it!
How I wish someone’s told me this 20-some years ago! Since my divorce in 1982 I raced like mad to find a suitable boyfriend, going from bad to worse. Miraculously my son (then 2) grew up a loving person yet also suffers some from the desperate-to-please issue. A year or so ago, after 13 agonizing years of one failure after another and completely blaming myself I gave up trying to befriend my sister-in-law. Painful not to see my beloved brother but it just made things worse when I threw me in the mix. So at first it’s a struggle, this detachment, but it’s better than the agitation of forcing something that doesn’t work! I am very new to your writing and appreciate your insight and clarity.
Saw this too late to make plans today. I will do this tomorrow. coffee shop in town I have not visited yet. I will be doing this alone. Let’s see what tomorrow brings!
… and isn’t it sad when that person is your very own sister 🙁 For years I have chased her, and I wasn’t what she really wanted. … and then when our Mom passed three years ago, I swore we would become close, I needed her… but it didn’t happen. I am still grieving my Mom and grieving the sister I was never good enough for 🙁