We all make mistakes of one kind or another. And I think it is generally because we are trying to meet someone else’s expectations, or their view of life. That certainly happened to me. My worst mistake was prompted by others’ expectations combined with a significant lack in self confidence that I married the wrong man, and ended up literally running for my life. The expectation had been that I would ‘need’ to get married…’need’ to find a man…and so on. It could almost be any man. And I picked the wrong man.
Fortunately I learned from this mistake, and later married a wonderful man with whom I have three terrific sons. Looking back on that earlier woman I still find it hard to understand how I let myself get into the position I did, except that the external pressure was pretty intense.
If we know and value ourselves, then there really isn’t much mystery about our choices. The problem is that we may not value ourselves sufficiently to understand there are many ways and paths for our lives to take. We truly can pick and choose.
I understand that many women, whether through family circumstances, culture, or their environment, are led to believe they are not ‘worth’ a better choice. They don’t merit something better. They have to fulfill someone else’s world view. This is a very pernicious state of mind, and takes effort to get past.
Based on my own experience, my advice for young women of today is very straightforward: You are absolutely worth the best. And you need to live the life you choose, not one selected by someone else. You also deserve to have good people around you and in your life. And my strongest suggestion is to stay away from people who aren’t worthy of you.
Yes, that can be hard. But ask yourself what other outcome you would like? In every relationship there eventually is a crossroads. You get to choose, to decide the direction you will take. Pick the right path. Your future rests in your own capable hands, and the bright outcome you deserve is waiting for you.
I agreed to marry the ‘mistake’ because I didn’t think I would get a better offer, and many friends had already married. Who was I waiting for? The answer I would give today is that I was going to wait for the right person who valued me, and where I could be the person I would dare to be.
The lessons I took away from that early experience have enabled me to overcome many obstacles, to put faith in myself, and to accept a different kind of risk. I am willing to risk tough struggles in order to achieve a great outcome. You can do it too.