From 15 year old me to 22 year old me: Where I thought I'd be at 22

So I’ve always had this thing about turning 22. Did it have something to do with a certain Taylor Swift sing? Very likely. I think it’s when you’ve officially become an adult. At 21 you’re still ‘just legal’, there’s something that still feels very kid like about it. But when I was 15, 22 felt a whole lifetime away. Now at 21, 15 feels a lifetime away.

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The best advice I ever got

Okay this maybe isn’t THE best but it’s some of the best advice I’ve ever got. I’m someone who tends to feel something, feel it very intensely and then like a switch, I turn it off. A couple of years ago I was super fucked off, upset, angry, confused, jealous, just a whole bunch of feelings. I went on a walk with one of my friends and we were talking about something completely different when she just said “WAIT STOP RIGHT THERE” literally made me stop in the middle of the sidewalk. She said “I can tell BLAHBLAHBLAH is on your mind, and here’s what I want you to do” I looked at her as if she had just read my soul.


“From here to that lamp post I want you to just say EVERYTHING. Chat shit, even if it’s not true just say it out loud so it’s out” and you can BETCHO BOTTOM DOLLAR I tore this situation to shit. But I hit the lamp post and that was it. It was out. And because of that it couldn’t swirl around my head anymore, I couldn’t think about it anymore, I had said it to someone, it was out. All those feelings went away. Simple, but effective.

So if you feel like you can’t let go of something or someone, grab a best friend, someone you can trust, and just blurt EVERY thought in your head out. For 60 seconds just chat shit. You’ll feel a million times better , I promise you that. 

Let's Be Real - Cheaters

First things first, can we just acknowledge the timing here. There is potentially the biggest cheating scandal in pop culture occurring (RED TABLE WHOOOOO?!) and this is what I’m writing about. Coincidence?! And to be honest, I couldn’t be more basic considering how many conversations I had about it over the past couple of days. BUT weirdly enough, every conversation has been different as people approach the topic so differently.

So I’m the first to say I trust way too easy which might be the reason I was pretty much cheated on a million times by the same guy… You’d think a bitch would learn. But here’s a curveball, I’m not all innocent either, and I defend myself saying ‘oh it doesn’t count, I was like 15, who cares’. A bit hypocritical, no? I’ll tell you what though, I swear down that I’d never do that again, because it’s actually one of the worst feelings in the world. And what makes it EVEN worse, is that that feeling can stay with you for so long. 

I’m in a weird sitch where I try so hard to put myself in a position where I will NEVER have to feel that way again, so much so that I never let anyone close enough to make me feel like that. I mean, I’m not all mad about it, I’ve got some funny stories (disaster dates I like to call them), that I think if I wasn’t the way I am, maybe wouldn’t have been funny or worth telling, I probably would have settled for one of them - and where’s the fun in that for a single gals website?!?

Anyways, let’s talk about those polls. Let’s put it this way, I think we all had a bit of a hard time answering those because the answers are never black and white, so answering yes or no really does push that gut feeling answer to the forefront. I think everyone has dealt with feeling betrayed by someone, and from everyones answers we all deal with it differently. 

I’d say I was with the majority of people on some answers, and like a couple of people said, it is SO dependent on the situation. But the overall consensus was if you’d been cheated on, you’d NEVER do it to someone and you’d NEVER want to feel that way again - understandable. 

Do I think ‘once a cheater, always a cheater’? No. But I do think if you’ve cheated and gotten away with it, you’re more likely than someone who has been caught or admitted to it, to do it again. 

My sitch was a weird one. I was with this guy for a hot sec, we broke up, then started seeing each other again, but without being ‘official’ (urgh hate that word) and he cheated (this could potentially be a Ross and Rachel ‘ We were on a break’ sitch) and then we got together officially. Yeah… I’m just as confused as you, and I lived it. And my way of dealing was just to stop talking to him. Literally the second I clocked it, yeah he never told me, I put pieces together, call me Sherlock Holmes. And he knew I knew, and when we actually spoke about it MONTHS later, his big line was ‘it’s not the girl you think it was, it was the other one’… SORRY BABE, AS IF THAT MATTERS RIGHT NOW?!?!?! Although, in saying that, clearly it mattered enough for me to take him back, no real questions asked.

I think as a naive 17 year old, or maybe even still naive 21 year old, if you tell me something, particularly if it’s along the lines of ‘worst mistake of my life, i think about it everyday, you mean more than   anything to me’, yeah, a bitch will sit there and believe you. NO MATTER HOW HARD I TRIED TO STAY COOL ABOUT IT, I was pretty chuffed and like totally in love with love. When I look back now, I should have just realised by going back was me not respecting myself enough to walk away. But also I was 17 and this was my high school musical moment - this was the shit you saw in teen rom coms. And this was happening to ME (like if this dude isn’t where my high expectations for men stems from, idk what is.). But the subtitle for this story was ‘I NEVER want to talk about this again’ aka pretend this never happened, pretend everything is perfect. And you know what? That made it perfect… on the surface. Just like all good things, it exploded a couple of months later when what could have been little conversations along the way turned into a huge fight and like anyone in that situation, my big argument was that he had cheated on me first and I had forgiven him whatever I do, he has to forgive me. Yeah… not my finest moment. But I think being young and so infatuated with someone, you don’t even care what they’ve done or how much they hurt you, you just want them. & You want them to want you (omg sounds like that song I waaaant youuuu to wanttt meeeeee, i neeeeeedd youuuu to neeeeddd meee). 


So when someone sits in front of you and says that they’ve found someone else, it’s like your worst nightmare coming to life. Albeit, I was rather intoxicated when being told this so I can’t fully back myself, I just know I was a mess. No matter how weird, shit or immature a relationship is, when you’re young and impressionable, that stuff sticks. And boy oh boy has it stuck. I think I’m still just as naive, but I’m more picky about the people I am naive for. 

I don’t think you should be in a relationship where you are constantly scared they are going to cheat on you. Take it from the girl who was cheated on and literally when I was with this dude, I had NO stress that he was going to cheat on me. Even though he did, I would have hated to have ruined the good times by wondering whether or not something was going on behind the scenes. So I don’t necessarily think you should change the way you behave in a relationship based on previous ones. Why should your new beau have to be punished for the way someone in the past behaved? I mean, I say that, my list of things I expect from a guy is only getting longer, but that’s a whole other story…





How to get Closure

I’m THAT girl who is like, ‘I just need closure’, but I don’t really, I just need to believe the reason for something to be over aka I need to be in control. Someone (you know who you are 😉) slid into my DMs on instagram (@byphephebelle) and asked me the big question ‘I can’t get over my ex, how can I get closure?’. I’ll tell you what, if someone can give me the magic answer to this, I’d be forever grateful. Until then, here’s my take on the question. 

I think you can get one of three types of closure and I’ve got all three:

  • no closure

  • fade out

  • the closure convo

Let’s go back to front, and start with the easiest to move on from

THE CLOSURE CONVO

I’m someone who in the last year has managed to split logic from emotion remarkably well. So well so that I would say my brain has an on and off switch that I can flip whenever I want when it comes to boys (anyone in fact, even friends - ruthless but honest). 

This guy I went on a couple of dates with last year, he probably deserves his own post but he was never actually in London. And unlike most guys, he was OBSESSED with calling. He would call and want to talk for HOURS, and at the beginning it was the most fascinating thing because what guy do you know wants to talk on the phone for that long?? I’m not talking Whatsapp, I’m talking  old school phone calls. But it was a couple of dates to a million phone calls, the ratio was all off, he was calling me as if we were married with three kids and I just couldn’t justify it. I didn’t want to get emotionally involved with someone I would have to say my ‘I do’ to over the phone because he was never actually around. 

Let’s get real, a bitch was talked out. One day, we were literally an hour and a half into a conversation and I had actually just put him on loudspeaker and started cleaning my vanity and just blurted out ‘I don’t think there’s much point to this, do you?’. It was one of those moments where I couldn’t believe the words had come out of my mouth and that I’d had been so blunt. I panicked for half a second because I wasn’t so sure how I was going to follow this up. And to this day I cannot believe this is the route I chose to go down. So he was very quick to be like he’d be in London before I knew it, he was willing to call all the time (OH WE KNOW!!!), blah blah blah, let’s just say I’d flipped the switch. And I went on to say ‘I was leaving in two weeks and I didn’t know when I’d be back, it could even be six months’ which you know was a big fat lie but also a tiny bit true… I was leaving in two weeks and hadn’t booked my return ticket yet so I guess I didn’t know when I’d be back. I’ll admit the six months thing was an embellishment but who doesn’t love a dramatic exit? All in all, I said I was done and that is what I call closure. Full blown, no questions asked CLOSURE.

THE FADE OUT

I think everyone has this type of closure where it kind of never ends. It fades but it’s still there, it’s like a filter on a photo, you can turn it up or down. It’s the sort of closure where there’s no real reason to end it, not a lack of feelings, no real explanation, it’s just not going to work anymore. There’s almost an unspoken thing where you know if either one of you calls, it will be fine, not awkward, you never have to fully acknowledge the past, but it’s still there. It’s a weird one, but a good one. 

I almost think it’s one of those weird ones where you realise there was actually a friendship in the back of the romance, and just like you turned on the romance, you can turn it off and remain friends. But the possibility of turning back on the romance remains slim, and to be honest, not really wanted. But there’s a level of respect there that, I think a lot of relationships whether they be full blown moving in types of situations, or just a couple of dates kind of situation, lacks when the romance becomes non apparent.

NO CLOSURE

Right, prepare for this because I’m pretty sure this has to be THE WORST kind of closure you could ever get. And it’s when the closure is not in your hands AT ALL. This has bitten me in the ass and left me the way I am today. When I say no closure, I actually just mean, in your head the door isn’t closed. I’m someone who if you say it’s done and I fully believe you, that’s it, I’m out. And I’ll tell you what, I can briefly remember having that kind of a conversation, however I was heavily intoxicated thus have never really believed that conversation happened. BUT I KNOW IT DID, but I didn’t want to believe that it was over.

I think it had something to do with, I’d had the same conversation with the guy a couple of times and it never was actually the end but every time before this it was in my hands just as much as it was in his, this time it wasn’t. I think when you’re young and nothing is really that serious at all, you always believe that things are going to work out like in the movies. And when it doesn’t, you’re more heartbroken because you’re convinced it was going to, you were expecting it… I mean #ME!

I think that’s where it never feels like you got closure, because you weren’t the one to lose feelings, flip the switch or fall for someone new. You’re the one left with all the feelings for someone who doesn’t feel the same, so what tf are you supposed to do with all those feelings.

I saw this thing the other day that was like ‘I lost someone who didn't care and you lost someone who did’, which I think puts it really well.

I think like most girls, I just put those feelings in a box with the guys name on it and store it somewhere in my brain. And I’ll tell you what, it’s one of the few things I can’t seem to throw out, every time I try (and trust me, I’ve tried so hard) there will be something, his name in a movie, this obscure song he showed me starts to play in the middle of a restaurant, and that is the worst kind of closure. When it NEVER ends. And I think 90% of why it doesn’t is because whether you know it or not, in the back of your mind you don’t want to let go of it. Whether it be the time in your life, the feeling that someone once gave you, or the boy himself. 

If you’re three months into a breakup or three years in and you feel like you can face that person and be able to talk about it, be that girl who meets up with her ex to get closure. Or if you just need to see them, to see that they are not the person you want or need. OR simply not the person you’re holding onto, you do what you need to do to get there because it’s different for everyone.

So if you want my advice on how to get closure, I would say make sure you are actually involved in the process. The best way is to realise what you are holding onto. This may be TMI, but I mean, what isn’t on phephebelle.com?! I’ve realised I’m holding onto the idea of what I want someone to be, not who they are and I’m conscious of that. Am I being a wimp for not letting go? Oh ABSOFUCKINGLUTELY! But, I’ve taken it as what I am expecting from someone (cough cough THE LIST!!!! if you want more deets), this bastard is just lucky (or maybe not so lucky) his face is the model for this perfect man I’ve made up in my head.

Anyways, approach it from the same way it’s being approached on the other end - If someone is trying to close the door on you, realise that you shouldn’t have to keep your foot in the doorway, or risk your fingers getting jammed just for them to keep it open. No one wants a love that will hurt them even at the best of times. 


The App You NEED To download ASAP

Ok so let me set the scene - you’re out with your girls, you’re FEELING yourself, having a good time when some weirdo comes up and attempts to flirt. You politely decline, he gets forceful, gets a little too close, makes you real uncomfortable and the people that work where you are, are watching this sitch and doing nothing… yeah, we’ve all been there.

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what is going on?!

I’ll tell you what, I am having what can only be described as an identity crisis (hence the major revamp of the site). 

My big joke for the last year about myself has been that I’m single and I hate it. Fast forward to now, I’m happy with it and the thought of a boyfriend right now puts me off to no end.

I have also found myself feeling down (I never feel that so I’m just not vibing with this mood) which I a hundred percent owe to London’s gloomy weather and the lack of light in my flat. I moved into a studio, very Carrie Bradshaw esque, that is the complete opposite of my old flat that was very bright and airy, also very high up with no building in front of it. Needless to say, I’m looking forward to moving out. Which actually isn’t that long away. Maybe if you are interested in how to set up a studio or something I could show you (I’m pretty pleased with it, it’s cute), just slide in my DMS @byphephebelle. But yeah I’m not someone who feels down a lot, I have a switch in my brain that when I’m just not feeling it, I switch my brain and get out of that funk. 

On top of that, I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT I AM DOING WITH MYSELF come graduation. Yeah, this is it, uni is coming to an end. I have a vague idea of what I want to do, but for the first time in my life, I don’t have a plan, nothing is set out. 

Needless to say, I’m not feeling like myself - or maybe I am.

So - bring your brooms because IT’S. A. MESS. (if you know what movie that’s from, i like u, i like u a lot).

From Then to Now.

I feel like I’ve pretty much branded phephebelle.com as the single girl who goes on the bad dates so you don’t have to, but also as the girl who feels like getting a boyfriend is harder than it should be as you take in the past, the present and the future. I take you into the mind of a 21 year old, whose thoughts may not always be logical, can come across as crazy and most of all I say it how it is

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