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My Label and Me: I was branded a bitch for falling in love

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Falling in love is supposed to be one of the happiest times in a person’s life. Butterflies flapping in your stomach too loudly to ignore and the promise of great things to come.

But, when I fell in love, I lost most of my friends and I was branded a bitch for following my feelings. Eighteen years later I have no regrets but the feeling of being judged unfairly still stings.

I’d been dating Chris* for seven years. It was my first proper relationship, and it had been both good and bad.

But it was real and intense and my whole world – including mates – were intertwined with him. His friends were my friends. But it was one of his university mates who turned out to be life-changing.

I had always got on with Max*. We’d had a connection from day one. We got on and laughed lots. We were just friends, but I always knew he’d make a good boyfriend.

I once even tried to get him together with one of my friends, so convinced I was that he was ‘a good catch’.

After much soul-searching, my heart told me that Chris wasn’t the right person for me in the long-term and I ended it. I still loved him and we had so much history together, but I knew the relationship wasn’t perfect.

Growing up with unhappily married parents, I always wanted to do better. I didn’t want to compromise as they had. I would rather be alone, than wondering if the grass was........

© Metro