A little over a year ago I left a five-year relationship. The breakup was terrible (we had to live together until our lease was up). Since our breakup I have seen him a handful of times, but at this point our communication is nonexistent but I still find myself thinking about him. I don't regret ending the relationship, and if I had to do it again I would still end it. But when you spend five years with someone, you build a life together so there are still times that I think about him and our relationship.

1. You don't realize how good you had it. 

I would describe myself as a "ride or die" when I get into a relationship. I will do whatever you need. Drunk at 4 a.m. and I have work at 8 a.m.? I'll come get you and take care of you. Short on money for your car payment? I got you. Need to cry about a really terrible day? I'll be there. Some may consider this a flaw, but when I love you and care about you I will be there day or night. And honestly, I think that is rare

2. I'm sorry I hurt you. 

When a relationship ends both parties experience a wide range of emotions. Usually the person who ends the relationship is causing the pain, but that pain is never intentional just a side effect of the relationship ending.

3. Thank you for your constant support.

Regardless of how long a relationship is, partners usually go out of their way to do things for each other, stand by each other, and provide emotional and physical support. I know that there were things that happened during our relationship that I would not have been able to get through if my ex hadn't been there.

4. Thank you for showing me what true emotional and physical intimacy looks like. 

When you grow up in a home where your parents are constantly fighting and there is no example of what love and commitment looks like your view on relationships is skewed. Thank you for showing me what it was like to give your all to someone, to commit to someone. Thank you for showing me it's okay to be vulnerable with someone. Thank you for showing me what it was like to feel safe.

5. Thank you for bringing me into your family. 

When your family is small and in shambles you don't really have much of a support system. You showed me how fun large family gatherings could be. Your family gave me a glimpse of what I want in my future.

6. Thank you for teaching me about your culture.

There's something beautiful that comes along with dating someone outside of your culture, and you showed me that. The more I learned about your culture the better I was able to understand you as a person. You taught me how beautiful interracial relationships can be.

7. Thank you for showing me what I don’t want in future relationships

A lot of things can make relationships fall apart (personalities, ideologies, mental health issues, signs of abuse etc.) There were signs from the beginning that it might not work and I ignored all of them.

8. Thank you for taking my virginity.

I was raised to believe that sex meant for marriage, but the older I got the more I realized that I didn't believe in that. But I knew I wanted my first time to be with someone special. We waited until I was ready. You were patient with me and we went at my pace. I am eternally grateful for that and I wouldn't take back any of it.

9. My heart broke too when we broke up. 

Yes, I was the one that ended the relationship. But it was the hardest and most painful decision of my life. I agonized over it for months prior and after. Ending a relationship is never easy and breaking someone's heart is painful.

10. Loving someone isn’t always enough. 

I used to think that just because you loved someone that you should be with them. I used to think that love could save a relationship. But now I know that isn't always true. Loving someone doesn't equate to a healthy and beneficial relationship. It takes more than love to make a relationship work.