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Post Column: Happy Trails: Don't let past relationships drag you down

Let me tell you something about people and relationships.

Sometimes I get in these really ridiculously good moods and I feel like making amends with and talking to people whom I haven’t spoken to in months because I want everything in my life to be neatly tied together. This incessant nagging voice in my head is like an awkward seventh grader who wants to be liked and accepted by everyone.

But sometimes life doesn’t work like that. In fact, usually it doesn’t work like that at all.

As daunting as it may seem, there are situations where you just have to cut someone off who isn’t good for you anymore, or stop thinking about someone from your past who doesn’t influence your life now.

That ex-boyfriend who’s always treated you like an object but who you keep hooking up with for validation of your self-worth? Bye. Your “friend” since freshman year who you know talks about you behind your back but who you still hang out with because you’re afraid to go to the dining hall alone? Buh-bye.

Those are toxic relationships, my friends. Get out and be done with it.

Why do you feel like you owe anything to those people? What have they done for you that justifies spending your precious time and energy on giving them a second thought?

As is human nature, we tend to remember the good memories surrounding the people who fit in and out of our lives. We have this keen little knack for forgetting the bad, like how awful they made us feel with a snide remark or how they somehow always managed to be unavailable to us during times of crisis.

Or how they don’t like dogs, which in itself means they have no soul.

But seriously, stop holding on to the past. As appealing as it may seem to phone up an old friend whom you ended things with on bad terms or as romantic as you think it would be to start talking to an ex again, get a hold of yourself.

Stop. Delete their numbers. Unfollow them on Twitter.  Do whatever you have to.

I had this really weird epiphany over winter break that involved me deleting my Facebook and half the contacts in my phone because I realized it wasn’t worth it. Spending so many mindless hours scrolling through a news feed full of people I looked at once in the hallway in high school or looking at my ex-boyfriend’s pictures from 2008 is so disgustingly unproductive (and creepy) that I wish I could go back in time and slap myself.

I’ve felt so much better since I made the decision to cut all that out of my life. Stop worrying about what people who don’t matter think.

I know I sound like your mom, but please listen to me: no one who doesn’t respect you or put as much effort into a relationship as you do is worth your time.

A huge part of being happy is surrounding yourself with good people. Your friends and significant others are supposed to enhance your life and help you grow as a person, not make you feel like crap. Quit hanging on to fake friends and “what ifs” and make room for new and awesome people in your life. If it didn’t work out the first time, or it isn’t working out now, why are you bothering with it at all?

Do something for yourself and burn some bridges. And don’t go sifting through the ashes after.

Cortni Dietz is a sophomore journalism student at Ohio University and a columnist for The Post. When is it time to burn your bridges? Email Cortni at cd509910@ohiou.edu.

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