I joined a dating site last week. I know it’s been less than three months since Tom and I split up and if I’m honest with myself, I don’t actually want a relationship but I will not let what happened between us define my future. I will not allow his actions to shape my thoughts and feelings about men and about love. I could stick to the promise that I made to myself to never risk anyone hurting me again but then he’d have won and all that abuse he put me through will be a wasted lesson for me.

Craig contacted me today. He seems to be fairly normal and has recently left a relationship so we at least have that in common. I decided to do something I haven’t done for over seven years. I decided to be myself. I swore, I made inappropriate jokes, I was funny and I really allowed the real me to come through in my messages. He loved it! He actually loved it. This is a huge revelation to me after so many years of Tom hating me. Craig said, “You’re great. I’ve never chatted to someone so funny.” It was like music to my ears. He likes me, for me. He doesn’t want me to change or to stop swearing or being inappropriate, he just likes me.

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