Recently, I read an article by Your Tango that identified several Mr. Wrongs the guys that you definitely don’t want to date and what you can learn from dating them. I’ve dated a few Mr. Wrongs in my day. Heck, I even married one. And while there are moments when a “do over” of my teens and twenties seems quite appealing, each of the events and people that filled that time period played a role in the person I am today. And I have to say I am pretty proud of the woman I have become. I’m stronger, more confident in my abilities and especially grateful for the gifts that I have. And, dare I say it, Mr. Wrong did something quite wonderful for me, he helped prepare me for Mr. Right. And if you aren’t familiar with my story, Mr. Right and I are married and most certainly in it for the long haul. But being in relationships with people who weren’t right for me did teach me a thing or two, or nine (don’t want to make Mr. Wrong look too good!). Take a look at 9 things I learned from dating Mr. Wrong:
9 Things I learned from Dating Mr. Wrong 1 of 10
Take a look at some of the lessons I learned while dating the wrong guy.
He reminded me life was short 2 of 10
Losing a loved one will remind you that life is short, but in a different way than the realization that comes with waking up one day and realizing that you spent months or years investing yourself in a relationship that wasn't right for you. The years that I spent trying to make something right that was all wrong to begin with are years that I will never get back. But their loss is not in vain. I learned that I need to be wiser about who I invest my time in as well as who I give my heart to.
He taught me what I did NOT want and what I did want 3 of 10
After being in a few bad relationships, you start to realize the things that you don't want in a person. However, you also realize what characteristics and traits are the most important to you.
Not to fear starting over 4 of 10
There were times when I stayed with someone I shouldn't have been with simply because I feared the unknown. Despite a relationship being unhealthy, I felt like at least I knew what I was getting. What if the next person was worse? I didn't want to go through the process of getting to know someone again, especially after I had already invested so much time in a current relationship. Eventually I realized that I was looking at it all wrong. And soon staying became a scarier thought than leaving. I came to see that there was no better time to start over than the present.
I learned how little I valued myself 5 of 10
Mr. Wrong taught me that I had some serious work to do in the self-esteem department. The things that I tolerated and subjected myself to were a clear indication of a diminished sense of self-worth.
Being single wasn’t so bad 6 of 10
I was always the kind of person who took comfort in being in a relationship, even if it wasn't a good one. But my final run with a Mr. Wrong taught me that I can have a hard time all by myself. I don't need to be with someone just for the sake of being with someone. Besides, being single gave me a chance to focus on working on me. I'm still and will forever be a work in progress, but taking time for myself allowed me to do some major growing as a person as well as focus on building a life for myself and my daughter. (And just when I least expected it, along came Mr. Right!)
I learned to trust my judgment 7 of 10
If you've ever had an encounter with Mr. Wrong, chances are you knew he was no good for you early on, but you ignored the signs, your intuition, or your mom. My experience taught me to listen to that small voice inside of me that tells me when something isn't right. If something feels wrong, it is wrong.
I am not a superhero 8 of 10
I used to be the girl that wanted to fix all of the bad boys. I thought I could help them because they were just misunderstood and in some ways I did, but helping them always came with a cost. I learned that my purpose isn't to fix people and really was kidding myself to think that I could. In that I discovered that being so focused on others meant I didn't have to focus on me and the work I needed to do (see reason #4).
When you let go of the bad stuff, there is more room for the good stuff 9 of 10
I found that letting go of the negativity in my life made room for more of the good stuff. By keeping someone in my life that shouldn't be, there wasn't any room for the person who should be. Mr. Wrong taught me that sometimes you just have to let go and move on.
This was not the end of my story, just a chapter 10 of 10
Mr. Wrong typically wants us to think that life ends with his departure, but in letting him go one will come to see that their story isn't over. Turn the page girlfriend. A new chapter awaits.
From time to time I might have a flashback and cringe, but when I look at the big picture I find myself eternally grateful. The most beautiful things came from what I consider to be my worst relationships things like some guts (I finally learned to stand up for myself), a beautiful child who has changed my life in miraculous ways, and a deep appreciation for a man who loves and values me in a way that at one point in my life I thought wasn’t even possible. So yes, as crazy as it sounds, I am grateful that I dated a few guys that weren’t for me because I see the true value in what I’ve got. And I realize that not everyone has to be in a bad relationship to appreciate a good one, but I do believe that the saying, “you have to have rain to appreciate the sunshine,” holds true even when it comes to dating.
Did you date a Mr. Wrong and learn anything from your experience?
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