I’m not really sure when the rumors began spreading.
It was long before I knew who you were.
I’ve heard things.
A lot of things.
I heard that you went out on a few dates with some poor guy and then led him on for months while you happily watched him suffer.
I heard that you spilled all of your secrets on the internet just to get back at people due to your desperation for others’ attention.
I heard that you slept in a different bed every single night for a month.
And believe me when I say that, sadly, those aren’t the worst of them.
I listened to everything that was said about you.
I began to convince myself that I knew you and that I was well-versed in your life story.
If someone happened to bring you up, I had my opinion of you and your reputation ready to go just so I could add to the conversation.
I’d always ask if they knew you personally,
They’d say no.
They’d go on spewing rumors.
And I’d listen.
But then I heard conflicting stories that would disprove some of those rumors until nothing about you seemed to make any sense.
Then the realization hit.
I actually have no idea who you are.
And I actually have no idea if anything that’s being said about you is true.
Because we’ve never sat down together over coffee and confessed our life stories.
I don’t know your middle name or what your passions are.
I don’t know why you and your ex-boyfriend broke up.
And I don’t know if all these horrible rumors about you are causing you to cry uncontrollably into your teddy bear every night while you ask, “Why is this happening to me?”
I don’t know.
So why would I pretend like I do?
I’ve learned over the past few years that you cannot control what other people think.
You can send a love letter out into the world with the best intentions only to receive a note back saying, “Stop trying to get attention.”
You can walk around with your head held high with confidence radiating from your body only to hear a person mumble under their breath, “She is disgustingly full of herself.”
You can introduce yourself to somebody new with the kindest smile you can bear but they could be thinking, “Oh… I’ve heard things about her.”
You will never be able to control what anybody has to say or think about you.
And that can be maddening.
I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve thought horrible things about other people.
People I didn’t know very well.
People I knew like the back of my hand.
We’ve all done it. We’re all guilty. And we’re all victims.
Unless I’m the only one.
If so… well then crap.
But I’m pretty confident that it’s not just me.
With that said, I’d like to tell you that I’m sorry.
I’m sorry for any rumor I’ve helped spread that was about you.
I’m sorry for judging you for the amount of guys you’ve kissed.
I’m sorry for any mean thought that has popped into my head while walking past you.
I am so sorry.
Because whether the rumors are true or not, nobody deserves to walk around a college campus while having to drag their horrible reputation behind them.
It doesn’t matter if the rumors are true.
It doesn’t matter if the rumors are false.
You can sleep in your own bed tonight or someone else’s.
You can go on dates with a guy and then stop for whatever reason.
You can do whatever the eff you want.
Because it is nobody else’s goddamn business.
We’re all allowed to make mistakes.
We’re all allowed to forgive ourselves and each other.
And wouldn’t it be nice if we didn’t have to hear about those same mistakes over and over again from other people for the next four years of our lives?
I’m begging people to stop.
I’m begging people to just be kind.
Because I know how impossible life can be when the world is screaming, “Nobody likes you” back in your face.
Why would anyone want someone to think that about themselves?
I really hope you don’t think that about yourself.
Because you are so loved.
You are so important.
And I am so sorry for any harm I’ve caused you.
Don’t let anything that anybody ever says stop you from being exactly who you are.
Because odds are they don’t even know who you are.
So, please keep being kind.
Please keep being you.
Facebook – Becca Tremmel
Instagram – @littlelionbecca
Twitter – @BeccaTremmel