You all know the phrase "You have to love yourself before you can love someone else." or even worse "Nobody will love you until you love yourself."
Let me take you on a little ride about why I call bullshit on this.
As I mentioned before I struggle with depression and anxiety since a very long time now.
I have my therapist on speed dial and a golden star that says "I got up today!".
All in all I had my fair share of breakdowns, months of not being able to get out of bed and feeling so small in this world that I sometimes started crying brushing my teeth.
Here are three things, everyone who went onto the couch has heard before:
Self worth, Self love and self confidence.
Every day I try to focus on a healthy balance between these three. I have reminders and learned to get inside my head and back out without stumbling over things.
What happens now, when people tell me I have to love myself first?
Sometimes I can't and then that little voice inside my head starts telling me that I am not enough until I am "normal, fixed, healthy..."
When you put someone's self worth in an equation with love, that person is most likely to lose.
We all need it, we want it, we crave it.
Yes even me, proud owner of a "single as fuck" patch.
(Because why have someone else ruin your life when you are completely capable of doing it on your own.)
What I mean is that we are taught from a very young age, that we need to be loved.
Later on in life we learn how to do it for ourselves.
On my worst days, I was lucky. I had people around me, supporting me and loved me when I wasn't very loveable. I wasn't unworthy of their love just because I was struggling with loving myself.
I get the idea of saying you need to love yourself. But sometimes it is not possible. Sometimes you don't love yourself, you hate every inch of yourself. And that happens, depression or not.
Someone's worth isn't measured by their self love.
You can hate yourself and not be happy with your choices, it doesn't mean you are worth less. And yes, people will love you even if you don't love yourself first. To compare your worth to the amount of love you feel for yourself is pointless. You will fail either way.
You are allowed to love yourself first, and invest and work on that, but never ever believe that you have to be functioning perfectly in order for someone else to show you that you deserve love.
Pictures by Sigrid.