After having thought about this for some months, I’ve realized that the unhealthy obsessive way I deal with crushes is learned behavior. I’ve known that how I interact with my crushes has been unhealthy since I was 14, and that hasn’t changed. Whenever I have a crush on someone, I feel like I revert to 14 year old behavior. As much as I have matured, the way I deal with crushes hasn’t. I obsess over them, I think about them all the time, I imagine scenarios where we talk to each other, while never, or rarely actually talking to them. I obsess over a projected imaginary relationship.
But where did I learn to do this? The media. Anytime a girl on TV has a crush on a boy, she obsesses over him, she thinks about him all the time, he has all of her attention always, it’s as if she has nothing else going on in her life. This is oppressive, growth stunting behavior. It is a function of the patriarchy to make a girl think it is normal to devote all of her attention, all of her brain space, all of her thought to someone she has a crush on. I had to admit that I was oppressing myself with this behavior. I committed to unlearning such harmful behavior.
So here I am now trying to unlearn harmful behavior. Unlearn that whether or not one person responds to me does not determine how my week goes, unlearning that it is necessary for me to know every single detail about my crush without knowing that through conversation, unlearning that i need to be where my crush is at all times, unlearning that when I have a crush on someone it becomes the single most important event in my life, unlearning that if my crush doesn’t like me back my self esteem should be affected in some way, unlearning that crushes are a source of stress because they take up so much energy.
But the process doesn’t end there. I have to relearn new, healthier ways of dealing with crushes. I have resolved to relearn these with girls. I haven’t internalized a preset method of seeing girls deal with crushes on girls because this hasn’t been represented. (Also because I’m more interested with relationships with women at the moment). Although dealing with my latest rejection was hard, it enabled me to reevaluate a crucial part of my life that was holding me back from feeling like I’ve fully matured. Thank you for not liking me, because now I am able to move on.