> Let's Talk - Relationships - Its All Zara

Let's Talk - Relationships

October 28, 2017

Happy Saturday my loves! This week is the start of my half term so I can hopefully get some more blog posts written and sent out for my readers to enjoy but FIRST today's Let's Talk post:

Now today's post focuses on Relationships, and being 22 years old its pretty much well assumed that I've got at least some relationship knowledge. But as well as my stories I'm being joined by some amazing writers who really impressed me with their work this week, please welcome them to my Let's Talk segment:

Han - @wellnessnwander on Twitter and her blog can be found at https://wellnessandwander.com/

Nadine - @alteredbodhi on Twitter and her blog can be found at http://www.alteredbodhi.co.za/

Han's thoughts: "Growing up I watched my parents stick together through thick and thin and I completely admire their relationship as a whole and it is something I have always strived to have myself. I always felt safe, loved and in a little bubble of the perfect family of four. However life isn’t always the Disney fairytale we watch as children of handsome prince’s fighting others off to sweep you off your feet.

I had my first proper relationship at fifteen which ended when I was nineteen and at the time I thought it would be my one and only relationship. I have no idea if he felt the same, but I was so head over heels and determined to make the ‘perfect relationship’ image become a reality. I gave my all and as you can imagine I was heartbroken when I found out I was being cheated on.

For that to happen to me in my first relationship, which took over my late teens, I felt like a failure and like it was all my fault. For some this may have put them off dating completely but for me I jumped from short relationship to relationship after this with the hope of finding someone to settle with. Of course none of these worked out very well for me because I gave too much to the other person.

I wasn’t Han anymore; I was half of Han and the other half was my boyfriend. I relied too heavily on men and relationships quite simply because I was scared of being on my own.

A couple of years back I had a crazy summer of going out a lot and partying hard which resulted in meeting some less than desirable men. Whilst it looked like I was having the time of my life from the outside, I was in a really sad place where I would date a guy and just expect them to hurt me, and by this point I didn’t really care anymore. It’s like I felt I deserved it or wasn’t good enough to be treated right.

When I met my current partner two years ago I decided it was time for me to make a change in how I treated myself. I know I deserve respect and that is what I get because I don’t accept shitty behaviour anymore. I feel myself more than ever in this relationship and it is because I respect and care for myself better.

I have learnt many lessons the hard way when it comes to relationships and dating, so hopefully I can stop someone from making the same ones I did.

Firstly, never lose sight of who you are and your morals. You need to be your own person, enjoy your own hobbies and socialise with your own friends. Being in a relationship doesn’t mean you give everything up just to spend time with your partner. If they really care they would want you to do what makes you happy.

Secondly, know you deserve to be treated with love and respect. Some of the guys I dated would say all the right things but their actions were completely different and disrespectful. If someone disrespects you and makes you feel bad then leave as fast as you can. It is a definite red flag."

Nadine's thoughts: ""Since I was 15 I've either been with a guy or breaking up with a guy. I haven't had so much as two weeks just to deal with myself." – Eat Pray Love. Movie & book by Elizabeth Gilbert

Sounds a little like me up until a year ago. Actually I’m pretty sure Elizabeth Gilbert took inspiration from my life for this quote! Ha! It has almost been a year now that I have been living a single life. I’m living on my own with this ‘doing it all for me’ kind of attitude and honestly, it has been the best experience ever. I’ve lived with a boyfriend & MY OPINION – don’t! Not before you experience living on your own. Anyway, now that I have had the time to be on my own, like really on my own, I only live by two words when it comes to relationships.

NEVER SETTLE… Compromise, maybe, sort of like saying don’t sweat the small stuff. Can’t make my fave gluten free, fried banana & peanut butter pancakes the way I like it? Don’t sweat it! But ya ain’t willing to try? NA-EXT! [ I take my pancakes seriously.

I know exactly what I want now. If he doesn’t make me laugh so hard I cry, or doesn’t think I’m the best damn person to walk the earth, or heaven forbid doesn’t like my yorkie, UHM BU-BYE! He’s also got to have character with distinguishing qualities. He has to give me some kind of feeling I just can’t find anywhere else. 

Think of it like a grocery list. It’s a list for your fave recipe, something you crave, it’s tasty and exciting, too good to be true. You make the list because those are the items you need, right? And are you going to settle, maybe leave an item? Well no because you won’t be able to make that perfect recipe, ya know? 

Every list is going to be different, but what ever it is you’re into, get it girl. Don’t ignore a single item on your grocery list. 

In the meantime, I’m loving the single me! I have clarity, I have absolute no time for shitty personalities and I’m so independent I feel pretty badass. Plus dates are so fun – good food & wine!

FYI, I have settled, over and over again. You know how people say madness is when you do the same thing but expect different results? Well yeah it applies, settling leads to a stale relationship, and I’m just too damn good to end up in that situation. Every relationship has taught me something different, no two are the same, but all of them have given me the same view I have now – be selective & never settle. Oh and on my bad days I watch Sex and the City episodes.

My thoughts: "Relationships for me have been a roller-coaster and a half! My first serious relationship was quite a few years ago now with someone I really thought I adored, but after almost a year of being manipulated, used, lied to, cheated on and mistreated he dumped me after ignoring me for a full day. Within two weeks he was dating a new girlfriend who he then tried to rub in my face.

To say I was hurt is a deep understatement and I pined over him for a good year after we broke up; after this I had trust issues, I had my guard up and I just couldn't find it in me to seek out another relationship. That was until late 2014 when I met Craig.

Now I've never been one to believe in fate, destiny or soul mates purely because I'm a "I'll know it when I see it" type of person, despite this I've definitely learned that some people are just meant to be in your life. So anyway November 2014 was when I met my current boyfriend Craig, we met on Tinder and bonded immediately over our shared interests.

We got together on the 16th November and have been in each others lives since, but it hasn't been smooth sailing. I've gone through pretty rough patches at the hands of my father, bullies and my own mental health but despite this and despite the effect its had on me Craig has stuck around and been 100% faithful.

He's loved me when I've been happy, when I've been angry and snappy, when I've been sad and distant - all of it, for this I owe Craig my utmost gratitude because not many people in my life have been consistent but he and my mother are two people I have had by my side constantly.

Yes me and Craig had a six week break at the end of August this year and just recently started seeing each other again regularly so some may consider our "third anniversary" next month pointless; but during those six weeks Craig constantly looked out for me. On my birthday in October I got no acknowledgement from my father and Craig took me shopping, got me dinner and did his best to keep my spirits up. On days I was sick with flu he came over with medicine he didn't have to buy me and took care of our dog Dean so I could rest, all of this without any complaint. He also regularly showed an interest in my college work and cheered me on when I was getting a bit frustrated with it, his support made it easier for me to carry on.

Having someone who tries their best to be your friend and keep you happy when you're going through hard sh*t is something you can't buy with money and it means so much more to me. So after six weeks I knew I still loved Craig endlessly and I had taken that time to assess my future, my feelings and what I wanted and what I wanted was him. Since then we have been more at ease, we argue less, we take time for ourselves and we have both learned great lessons.

Relationships aren't easy and you can meet some real untrustworthy characters, but when you do find someone who is happy to help you, is always there for you and is supportive no matter what you can put your past behind you and heal. For me I never knew this would happen because my first relationship really damaged me, and its taken me learning to love myself in order to be happy in love with someone else but it's finally happened. It can happen you, and to anyone who wants that type of love in their life."

I really hope you enjoyed reading my segment this week, and I shall be putting the word out on my Twitter for more writers for next weeks post real soon! Have a great weekend everyone xoxo


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  1. So happy to hear that you are happy in your current relationship :)