Am I just not good enough?: Why he chose her over you…

Young couple holding glasses with champagne and woman looking at

I think at some point in life all women have asked themselves this question. If you’ve ever been dumped by a guy who claimed he wasn’t ready for a relationship and then practically moved in with the next girl that came along, it is hard not to question if something about you is flawed when your relationship doesn’t work out. You may not even be able to pinpoint what it is about you that seems inferior to other women, you just feel deep in your bones that somehow you are. If you watched this season of The Bachelor on ABC, you may remember that sweet, southern Kacie B. cried the very words, “Why am I not good enough?” after she was sent home rejected following her home-town date. From her point of view, if she were somehow “better” she would have been the one to get the final rose. But as we have seen play out repeatedly in season’s past, the “best” woman does not always win. In fact this season it would seem that the absolute “worst” woman triumphed over all. But Courtney, who landed the Bachelor and that final rose (but was temporarily dumped just weeks after the show aired) has involuntarily taught every woman in the world a very important lesson. And that is this – being “good enough” isn’t what makes a man love you. If that were true, Ben would have picked, Lindzi, who in many people’s opinion, was prettier, smarter, and orders of magnitude nicer. Or earlier cast-off, Emily, who in my opinion was not only more attractive than Courtney, but also a PHD student with a great sense of humor. There were so many women on the show that arguably seemed “better” than Courtney. Yet, Ben picked her. Why? Because something about Courtney resonated with Ben. His personality, his life experiences, and his own feelings about himself all play into why he chose her. Her being the “better” woman was not a factor at play. I’m hoping this is an ounce of comfort to any brokenhearted woman wondering why their man left them for someone else.

A client of mine fell deeply in love two years ago, only to have the man she thought she would marry leave her for someone else. They had had a bumpy relationship from the start but my client always thought that somehow they would work through their differences and end up together. When I first started coaching her she was already obsessed with her ex’s new relationship. Like many women, she stalked her former flame and his new girlfriend via the social network, hoping to find a a shred of understanding as to what this woman had that she, herself, did not. Unfortunately she not only failed to find the answer, she became even more perplexed when she realized the woman was less physically fit, less educated, and more needy (as evident from her many amorous wall posts on Facebook). Several times my client asked me what it meant to be abandoned by your lover for a person of less quality. Did it mean that despite all my clients’ wonderful attributes, that she was just somehow, unexplainably inferior?

Of course not.

What my client failed to consider was (again) her ex’s personality, life experience and his own feelings about himself. Even though he was a good-looking, confident man, he had come from a broken and dysfunctional family. His own mother was an extremely volatile woman who relentlessly picked on him while smothering him at the same time. She was hot and cold with her feelings. Growing up he never fully felt accepted by anyone. Then he met my client. A woman who loved him the way he always wanted to be loved. A good, kind, well-balanced person that would never attack him or his character. And for him, that felt…awkward. He was not comfortable with that kind of love yet. He was not capable of appropriately receiving it. He truly felt more at home with someone who was …”dramatic.” Someone that provided the “ups and downs” he was accustomed to growing up. His mother also Continue reading

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