Romantic comedies are the worst. Sure, they provide entertainment on Girls’ Night or hope for relationships for a single girl’s night alone. But is that hope false? Women often get confused by stories they hear of something that happened to a friend of a friend of a friend, or by watching romantic comedies where something completely implausible happens and the couple ends up together in the end. Because of this, they believe the trap.

The most common myths come from movie tropes and stories that have no doubt been twisted by each mouth these stories have escaped from. So, we get false hope and we end up chasing that myth instead of a chance at real love. We think relationships are meant to be like the fairy tale myth we’ve been searching for and that the real relationship we have (with hardships, fighting, and a partner who sometimes lets you down) is not good enough for us. So we leave. We leave again and again and end up alone. Accepting reality and being with a great person who cares for us isn’t good enough because it’s not the myth with a perfect person. But this is not healthy.

Let’s take a look and some of the myths we believe are the standard for true love stories.

Myth: Girl is cruel and the guy appreciates her spunk. He falls in love and keeps coming back again and again. He puts up with her shit to get her attention and they end up together.

We’ve seen this in countless rom-coms. After seeing the movie, it leads girls to believe if they’re rude or mean to a guy, it means they’re showing their strength and demanding respect from men. Being cruel isn’t a show of strength, just unkindness, which is an unattractive quality. Being a “bitch” doesn’t earn respect. In fact, it can prevent a person from earning it. Respect is earned by being a person someone else wants to look to when they’re uncertain of themselves.

Alternatively, you get out of a relationship what you put into it. How can you expect a man or woman to treat you well when you don’t treat them well? Eventually, he or she will realize they’re too good for the shit you put them through and they’ll leave while you feel regret over your behavior. There are no happy endings for this story.

Myth: Guy makes a bet with friends to sleep with the girl but ends up getting to know her and they fall in love. She forgives his stupidity and they end up together.

Are you kidding me? Firstly, what guy is selfless enough not to take the money and run after winning that bet? The best we can hope for is the guy leaves you alone forever after dumping you because he feels so much remorse he can barely interact with you without getting a stomachache. Secondly, no one should reduce themselves to wanting a relationship with someone who would take advantage of a person that way. It’s not romantic. It’s demeaning. You’re better than that.

Myth: Girl dates the rich guy unknowingly and he hides it from her so she can fall in love with him for real. She discovers her boyfriend is rich and they end up together.

While there’s nothing wrong with wanting a rich or well-off partner for the security of being taken care of, it also isn’t a true love story. It’s understandable that we search for someone who can provide for us. We value and need partners that make us feel safe. However, safety and security are not love. If you’re looking for real love, it’s a risk. It’s scary and dangerous. You’re not safe emotionally. You’re putting your trust in another and relying on another for a large part of your happiness.

So, it makes sense that you choose the safer route by going with the person who can offer a clear, and secure, future. That in itself isn’t real love though. When the girl finds out the guy is rich, not having known it the entire courtship, the relationship will quickly change. When we realize our partner is able to provide more for us, your priorities and attractions will shift. Also, you may end up feeling betrayed that your partner left out a huge piece of information about their life. How we’ve grown up, our class status, and how we’ve handled finances (either financial hardship or otherwise) makes us who we are. It’s a huge part of our character. Discovering this part of your partner will change your relationship and how you see that person. Money is a big issue in a relationship and should be discussed sooner in a courtship rather than later.

Myth: Guy is a jerk, who goes out with the nice girl. The nice girl changes him into a good guy and they end up together.

People don’t change. Stop believing this myth! If anyone grows (notice the difference between growth and change) it’s because they have had their own experiences and they’ve grown through lessons and age. Growth is possible, but it takes years. Don’t waste your time waiting for that. You can’t change anyone and you don’t know who a person will grow into. That new person may not be right for you either, and it’s not worth wasting years of your life being unhappy waiting to find out.

These are all ridiculous myths. The truth is this. If a girl is a bitch, the guy is just going to be, understandably, frustrated and give up. If a guy makes a bet to sleep with a girl, he’ll sleep with her and get his money from his friends, leaving the girl to feel like an idiot. If the girl dates the rich guy and finds out he’s rich, it doesn’t matter if she loves him or not. She’ll stay with him because he can afford to take care of her and give her a nice life, or leave him and resent him for withholding this information. If a guy is a jerk, he’ll always be a jerk and no girl can change him. We need to stop trying for the myth. We need to start striving for reality.

Real love is a lot of things: frustrating, complicated, stressful, beautiful, patient, hilarious, and consuming. Love is not singing together alone in a forest like in Sleeping Beauty. Love is irritating, messy, give and take. Love is delivering what you expect from others. Good things don’t come from nothing just because it works for the plot. Don’t let these unrealistic expectations keep you from finding someone great who will make you happy.