Do Not Answer (Art)

Words and art by Yididya Yimer.

I once dated a man who I gave my all to–mentally, emotionally, and physically. If there’s such a thing as pure, selfless love, I’d be the poster woman of it. I was continuously giving, but he only took. He never reciprocated the love I’d show him.

Unfortunately, I was naive. I thought he was “testing” me to make sure I was truly a good woman before he would give me what I gave him. He was manipulative and emotionally abusive. He told me I wasn’t worth it. He told me I was worthless. I later found out he was cheating on me, and I wasn’t surprised.

He broke me to pieces.

I can’t describe what exactly happened, but one morning I woke up. Something clicked within me, and I looked in the mirror and told myself that I was worth it. It was him who was blind. I vowed that from that day forward I would never allow a man to make me feel any less than who I am, a queen.

When he texted me out of the blue on Valentine’s Day, I let him know that he’d never afford my love.

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