I'll support you, but I need your help.
You know the one, the guy with the long hair, who cries easily and writes dark poetry about how much he hates himself.
Thankfully, this is usually a phase.
Don't get me wrong, I would never write off a man with low self-esteem.
Humans don't always love themselves easily.
But I do think that men who are of the belief that a woman's role is to give them a sense of self, need to be disillusioned of that fact.
If you love a man with low self-esteem who is toxic like that, this is what he needs to know:
I'm not dating you to complete you.
Sure, it sounds really romantic when Jerry Maguire said "you complete me" but that was just a movie.
This is real life.
It's taken me a long time to learn that it's not my job to "fix" another human being that I'm in a relationship with.
I'm a whole, unique, complex person and so are you — that's why we're together!
If you feel empty or incomplete, I'm not the answer.
I'm not here to "fix" you, I'm here to be the cherry on the sundae of all the hard work you've already done on your self-esteem.
This is an equal partnership.
Imagine if every time you decided to enter a romantic relationship exclusively, your partner handed you a giant rock.
"Here," they'd say. "If you want to be with me, I'm going to need you to carry this rock for me."
In a relationship, you split the balance of the weight that you carry.
But you need to do the work on yourself, by yourself.
I'll be your cheerleader, but I won't be the one building the foundation of your sense of self.
I shouldn't be.
When you tear yourself down, you're questioning my taste.
Every time your low self-esteem gets the better of you, you're telling me to leave you.
I know you don't see it that way, but when you say "I'm ugly" or "I'm so dumb" or "I don't know why you're with me" you're saying "you can do better."
That's hurtful. It's mean. It's not your place.
You might be suffering, but I've decided to be with you for reasons all my own, reasons that have nothing to do with your low self-esteem.
I don't need to fix you to love you.
Somewhere along the line, men with low self-esteem learned that woman love a fixer-upper project.
that might be true when it comes to re-purposing an old chest we buy at a flea market, but it shouldn't apply to the men we love.
You can be a complete and happy individual and I can still love you.
In fact, I'd prefer it that way.
I know that being a happy human is a journey and a process, but you don't need to be miserable to be worthy of my love.
If you can't at least come to a truce with yourself, how can I ever expect you to be in a real relationship with me?
We don't all love ourselves all of the time.
I have days where I am my own worst enemy.
But I have a healthy relationship with myself, and I think that proves that I know how relationships work.
If you can't master a relationship with yourself, how can you master interacting with another person?
I'm not asking you to be perfect, I'm just saying that coming into a relationship with a realistic understanding of what are roles are for each other will make us both happier in the long run.