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A Plea From My Mentally Ill Heart, to the Person Who Wishes to Love Me

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Please understand that, while I may seem strong in many ways, I am fragile when it comes to my heart. I have been struggling to survive and have been battling myself and my mental illness my entire life  My heart is my one safe haven and I do not let people in easily. Love and vulnerability honestly scare me.

Please be patient with me because I do not trust easily. If I have trusted you enough to let you in, you truly mean a lot to me. I have been hurt and abused so often I keep most people at a distance. While I do not trust easily, if I have welcomed you into my heart, I trust you enough to be vulnerable around you. Please don’t take advantage of that trust or that love. It may take time to pull all those walls down for you and for that I am sorry. Vulnerability scares me.

Please be compassionate with me. I know I am a mess in many ways, but I am sincerely trying my hardest to be the best version of myself I can be. I will have down days, bad days, days when I barely have the strength to get out of bed. I will have emotional days when all I want to do is cry and days where I am convinced I deserve no place on this planet and nothing you say or do will be able to convince me otherwise. Please know it doesn’t mean I don’t love you. Depression is just physically, mentally and emotionally exhausting and is always trying to consume me, day and night, every single day.

Please don’t accuse me of being needy for loving you with all of my heart or needing to be reassured of your love from time to time. My life has been full of dysfunctional, unhealthy relationships so I’m not entirely sure how to love. I love fully and deeply because my heart is raw, my emotions strong. I often operate in only too modes — either I feel deeply or I feel nothing at all. I put all of myself in because I believe you deserve it. Please don’t react to my love with criticism and negativity. It is scary enough putting myself out there without you making me feel like my love is fundamentally broken or flawed.

Please don’t say you’re going to be there if you don’t intend to follow through. Please don’t make promises or plans you have no intention of keeping. Please don’t spend years telling me you want to spend a lifetime with me only to cast me aside on the drop of a hat. Please don’t tell me I’m your everything or your dream and promise me happily ever afters you never intend to share with me. I take your promises seriously because I need to trust and believe in you in order to keep you close to my heart. Violating my trust makes me want to pull away and shut down.

Please be consistent in your love. You cannot love me one day then treat me like I do not exist the next. Either you always love me or you never did. Please don’t treat love as something that can be shut off if it is inconvenient, only to be picked back up at a later time. Please never treat love as a reward to only be given upon your decree or as a punishment to be taken away if you feel cross. Love should never be given or withdrawn on a whim. Love should be for better or worse, in good times and bad.  If there is love, there is always love.

Please never tell me you love me, truly love me, if you do not mean it wholeheartedly. Don’t just say words you do not mean in order to appease me. I would rather face an ugly truth than a beautiful lie. Having you profess your love only to negate it by your words and actions tears my heart out and shatters it. Please never say anything you don’t truly mean. A large part of my love for you resides upon the fact that, in my heart, you are different than the others who have hurt me before.  When your words and your actions do not line up, you begin to feel like a stranger to me, like one huge lie. Please don’t make my love for you and faith in you into a lie.

Most importantly, please do not expect me to wait around if you are unable or unwilling to give me the love I need and, more importantly, that every person deserves. While I may love you wholeheartedly, I must love myself, as well. Please never expect me to allow you to hurt or abuse me as others have done because I can never allow that again. Please know that if you are unable to love me unconditionally in return then I must move on. I deserve to be loved with the same fervor that I give to you. I cannot settle for anything less. If you truly love me, you shouldn’t want to give me anything less.

I have been let down, hurt, abused and been abandoned and discarded by so many people in my life, the thought of suffering through it even one more time is terrifying. If you are not truly sincere in your words and your actions, please just move along and let me be. Please do not treat my love as a game. My heart has been through enough. Please don’t add to my pain.

I want to believe in love and in you, but I am terrified of having my heart shattered again. I want to love again and build something real. Putting trust in someone else makes me feel very vulnerable, though. Vulnerability terrifies me. Please never offer me lip service without intention or speak about love without a commitment to my heart. Please show me compassion and patience, knowing I must love you deeply to welcome you into my heart. I may have been through a lot in life, but I have so much love yet to give if only you would hear my plea and love me back in return.

~ Dedicated to those who wish to love us, damaged broken hearts and all. Please do not let our past or current struggles intimidate you. We know loving us isn’t easy, but love that is true and unyielding can conquer anything. We have so much love to give that person who is able to look past our scars and love us back unconditionally.

This blog originally appeared on Unlovable.

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Originally published: November 7, 2016
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