Can someone be “too good” for you?

I was out and about the other day and may have overheard two young men talking about this girl. (Okay fine, I was totally eavesdropping. I’m terrible.) One of the guys, after expounding on the fine qualities of this young woman, paused and said, “It would never work. She’s too good for me.” I could hear the defeat in his voice, the causal dismissal of his own worth. And I understood, because I’ve been there.

Perhaps we all have at one point in our lives. We meet someone and we’re bowled over, awe-struck, absolutely enamored. She is beyond lovely. He is perfectly wonderful. This person, we tell ourselves, could be the start of something amazing. And as we lose our breath over our fascination, we hoist them onto a pedestal to better admire them. We set them just out of reach. So while we long for them and the connection that seems to be buzzing between us, we’ve convinced ourselves we can’t have them.

They are too good for us.
They could never fit into my life because of my past and the things I’ve done.
She is too beautiful.
He is too handsome.
He is too smart.
She is too talented.

We create our own walls without even taking a chance. Like the gentleman from the coffee shop, we wallow in the defeat. We say no before giving the person who makes our heart skip a beat the chance to say yes. We let our insecurities, fears, and low self worth get the better of us. We talk ourselves out of it – out of the possibility of more, out of romance, out of something perhaps better than perfect.

We give our past more power than it deserves. We look backwards rather than forward, remembering every sin we’ve committed, every misdeed, every embarrassment. With each remembered indiscretion the chasm between us and the person we care for widens. We cannot forgive ourselves for the things we’ve done so we imagine they couldn’t possibly forgive us either. We deny ourselves grace and kindness, allowing our heart and soul to become embroiled in guilt and shame and loneliness.

They deserve better, we tell ourselves.

You deserve better. You deserve an amazing love story. Not a perfect one or a fairytale. But a real romance between two people choosing to love each other not despite your past, but because of it. Because your past brought you here to this moment with this person, and you deserve to be happy. You deserve to take a chance.

And they deserve it, too. Because as maddening and distressing as it is to be the person who doesn’t feel as if they are worth it, it is just as saddening and disheartening to be on the other side. I’ve sat on both sides of the table. I’ve lived both stories – feeling not good enough and being told I’m too good for him. There is nothing more heart wrenching than to hear a man say, “I care about you very much, but it could never work. You are too good for me. You deserve better.”

Because maybe all I wanted was him; a real man with flaws, issues, and a full life behind him. Maybe I’ve moved beyond wanting a hero, my own real-life knight in shining armor. Maybe I just want a man who cares about me and is willing to look at me and see not someone too innocent and fragile, but someone lovely and wonderful and worth the effort. Maybe I wanted to make the choice for myself.

We deny ourselves so much with this way of thinking. We only hurt ourselves and those around us. The truth is she’s not too good for you. And he’s not better than you. All the insurmountable things you imagine would get in the way of a relationship might not be a daunting as you believe. They are merely figments of our overly critical imagination.

The truth is, you are good enough. You are worthy of a loving relationship with a person who makes your heart swell with passion. You deserve the happiness that comes with being with a person who fits you and loves you and adores you no matter what sort of life you lived before you met them. But we need to be willing to trust and believe we are worthy of the love we long for.

We need to be strong enough to take the chance.

Thank you for reading! And maybe (definitely) follow me on Twitter. I’m pretty entertaining.


15 thoughts on “Can someone be “too good” for you?

  1. This has been a bit of an issue in my relationship as well. My boyfriend would constantly say thing like this and I would remind him that NO ONE is ‘worthy’ of love. We are all sinners. But Grace is the love we don’t deserve to have. <3

    • It can be really hard for some of us to realize we are worthy of love without any qualifications. But like you said, grace allows for us to accept that love and be free with it.
      Thank you for sharing your thoughts!


  2. I couldn’t agree with you more! That’s why in the past I always went for a guy who I figured no one else liked, so that maybe I could have a chance with him.

    • I’ve done the exact same thing. And looking back now, I wish I could tell my younger self that I’m worth more than that. Because you deserve someone who leaves you breathless, not merely someone that no one else is interested in.
      Thanks for reading!


      • A lot of my thought process was all about the “hidden gems” like, I’d go for the nerdy guys because I figured with a bit of sprucing up, they’d be perfect. And now, I realize that no one is perfect, and it’s okay! And you’re absolutely right! We deserve someone who makes us catch our breath and not settle for anything less than that.

  3. Pingback: Motivational Monday « Just Jess

  4. I totally relate to this article! my man dropped the bomb earlier this week… and well silly me here, tried to reassure him and he dropped it again today… that it’s for my own good and that it won’t work and that he is not worthy of me.

    its so sad. and heartwrenching even. *sigh*

    but we were willing to move forward in our friendship…… despite that. itd take me awhile to get me back in the dating scene tho. But, your article helped! Thanks a lot!

  5. Cassi, if a beautiful, young and intelligent woman has fears of this kind then we are all in trouble!!! Seriously, you are one of the few bloggers I read that is as radically and refreshingly honest as I am myself, and may I say that it is very rarely if ever that women talk about or even acknowledge issues such as this. All kinds of things come in to the ‘this person is not good enough for that person’ interplay. Ethnicity, class, socio economic status, looks and so many other things. All it creates in the end is another barrier to happiness and sadly another way for people to judge, look down on and dismiss another person, as if there wasn’t enough of that in the world anyway.

  6. Today, I stumble on your post exactly a year later only to find myself immerse in your writing as this has been a struggle for me for most of my life. Let’s just say I had a parent who reminded me every so often that I am worthless if I don’t do XYZ to make X amount of money to show off to friends and family how successful I am. Of course, it didn’t play out to their wishes. out and those words have been ingrained into how I view myself. It’s been hard to break away from this mindset and I have made many changes in my thought processes to rule out any negativity, but it still lingers around.

    I want to thank you for writing this. It helped me understand that we all have more in common than we’d like to admit. Our struggles and continuing efforts to be “better” sometimes overshadows who really are on inside and there’s is comfort in knowing that people will understand you for what you are.

    God bless.

  7. I have a problem,i like this guy,who comes from a rather well-off family,me,on the other hand,comes from a humble background.My family is actually very poor compared to his.To make it even worse,my parents didn’t receive much education which is the complete opposite of his parents.And i don’t know if he likes me or not but we did flirt a dew times.So,what shoold i do?i want a serious relationship that can later lead to marriage.When it comes to marriage,a lot of problems are gonna rise since the total different backgrounds of ours and I’m very afraid his parents will not like me because of my humble background:(Should i go for him or just let go?Please help!Thank you so much

  8. I thought this for months with my ex-girlfriend but never brought it up. I tried hard to get her to believe that I was good enough for her but in the end she broke up with me for those very reasons… my past, my friends, my shortcomings. So there is such a thing as “too good for you”. And now I have to live with that – not enjoyable.

  9. Some flowers shouldn’t be picked. Leave it. Let it be. Let it grow. It’s selfish to not share it with the world. Keeping this flower all to myself may be disastrous. I unintentionally might even hurt it. I have no idea how to care for one.. let alone love one.

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