I don’t know who you are. I don’t know your name. But I wish very much that I did.
I am writing to you because I was sitting next to a guy at the gym tonight who knows you. It was very clear he isn’t your boyfriend, but that he “hooks up,” as he says, with you, or sees you just about every night of the week.
He and his friend were having a conversation tonight as they lifted next to me, and he said some things about you that I want you to know. He apparently thinks he has you hooked and invested, completely enamored with who he is and the role he is playing in your life. “If only she knew what your game plan was on guys night out! She’d be crushed!!” his friend says as they laugh together. I was growing more upset for you as this conversation went on.
“Yeah, I’ve got her hooked. And she is going to need some heavy duty scissors to cut herself loose.” These two go on and on. Typical guys you can often find in the gym living in the beach cities of California - muscular, tan, good-looking. “You don’t care about how she feels?” “Heh, of course not. I’ll drag it out, get in a couple fights, then let her go.”
They never said your name. They never spoke about you as though you were a woman with real feelings - more than an object for pleasure or play. I’ve been feeling the weight heavy lately - the weight of the sadness women who settle for being disrespected and used - and you know, I don’t know you, but I went to the bathroom and couldn’t help but shed a few tears for you and for all the women settling for garbage like this. I wanted so badly to stand up for you - but my heart is too heavy and I just couldn’t hold it together for long enough to do that.
I wish I knew who you are because I want to tell you that you deserve more than what you are settling for. This guy deserves nothing from you - he has not earned it. And I tell you this with compassion, not judgment. I want you to know that there is better than this. I want you to know that you are worth so much more than use. You deserve to date a man who wants to commit to you, to treasure you, and to show you the respect you deserve.
I want you to know that it is sad that this guy is using you but it is also sad that you are allowing yourself to be used. That you are giving your body away to a guy who could not care an ounce less about your heart, or your feelings, or your soul. I admit I do not know how you feel about the whole situation - I do not know how you have come to this place - I do not know if anyone has ever stopped to tell you just how important and priceless you are.
I receive many emails from girls who have friends in situations like yours - friends letting themselves be used by one or many guys like this one. They don’t know what to say to friends who are letting themselves be objectified and played and manipulated. Their hearts are broken but they don’t know how to approach the situation. My sister, we as women have an obligation to one another that is hard, but necessary, to uphold and live out. We are responsible - if we are going to be real, true, good friends - for taking the hands of our friends and looking them in the eyes to say…you deserve better than what you are settling for. Not in judgment, not in condemnation, but in love. We must do this for one another. It is what any shred of an authentic friendship requires - it is what sisterhood demands of us. Too many of us do not do it - we fear our friends will think we are judging, are shaming - but if one person gathers the courage to tell a friend she deserves better, that could just be the one thing she needed to hear to change her ways. We must remind our sisters of their worth. It is our grand responsibility to one another.
I do not know if this letter will get to you. Maybe one of your friends will see it and share it with you. Crazier things have happened. But I hope that before this guy can drag it out, get in a couple fights, and cut you loose…that you call him and tell him that you deserve better...that you end this thing - and for the rest of your days you only give your time to men who honor and respect you for the glorious girl you are and were created to be.
You are loved, you are loved more than you know.
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