You betrayed me in the worst way. I gave you so much of me, and you handled my heart like it meant nothing to you. It stung, I'll admit. I was bitter for days, months, years after I found out you cheated. But, I don't regret our relationship.

In fact, I'm thankful for it because it helped me learn to stand up for myself and know my own worth.

While we were together, I left everything up to other people. I let everyone around me, including you, tell me what to like, what to dislike, what to wear, how to act, and who to be. People could treat me however they wanted, and I never contested it. I was never really myself, mostly because I didn't know how to be. When you left me for someone else, my whole "identity" was shattered. I had to rebuild myself from the ground up.

Without you, I was forced to find other places to find my worth. I tried placing it in fake friends, grades, hobbies, and other men I thought would be as important to me as you. None of that was satisfying because all of those things greatly disappointed me at one point or another.

Ultimately, I had to make the choice to put my whole being into a God who loves me unconditionally and will never leave me desolate. I also began to surround myself with things I truly loved, like my family, loyal friends and time spent alone. Learning to be myself again and unapologetically enjoy life was a growing experience I never could've anticipated, but one I am so grateful for. If not for your unfaithfulness, I wouldn't be the individual I am today. I would still be completely focused on others' approval. Your approval. The people around me would still hold the reins to my life.

For anyone who is going through the heartbreak of a cheating SO, please know that your value is so far above whatever he/she has placed on you. You are a treasure to God, your family, your friends, and people you don't even know yet. Give yourself a chance to re-evaluate, reinvent, and grow from this experience.

You are not broken. There is nothing wrong with you.

No amount of people-pleasing will force someone to love you, so learn to be yourself always. You never have to put up with being used, abused or mistreated. You are cherished more than you'll ever know, so let unnecessary baggage go and live like you're loved.