I remember a time when meeting someone who was just as damaged was a bit of a relief. Everyone walking…
“I just don’t understand.” She said, “What kind of person would text a breakup?”
“A coward.” I said.
“All he said was that he just didn’t want to be together anymore.”
“So did you ask him why?”
“Yeah,” She said. “But he just said that he was confused and that he would pick up his stuff when I was gone at work tomorrow.”
She talked for a while. I just listened because that’s what a friend should do. Every now and then I would ask her a question – mostly to help her realize how shitty of a person he truly was. And he was. Throughout the tenure of the relationship he was unnecessarily dismissive and angry and the only serious interest he ever showed in her life was when he would insist that she explain her schedule and demand she account for any time that she was not home or in constant contact with him. Which, if you have paid attention to the behaviors of unhealthy relationships – are the hallmarks of a jealous and insecure little boy who hates himself.
I understand not wanting to give up on a person and their shitty behavior. Because underneath all the rude comments, the belittling, the shaming, and the spite is the person we fell in love with. And that is the person that blinds us. Because the abuser never takes you on a first date. He waits until you have let your guard down to show his face. But the reality of the situation is that, while the person you fell in love with might be inside that rotting carcass of a human, he is slowly poisoning you the entire time. He is stealing away your trust, your positivity, and the light of your soul. And so many of us willingly sacrifice the best of us on the off-chance that the person who we first met will come back. But I don’t know if anyone has ever told you that they don’t. They almost never come back.
And it is confusing. Why is it that it always seem like the people running away from the relationship are the ones who put in the least effort? Truthfully, most of us will never know the real reason why they broke up with us. I can tell you that in the case of most of the relationships I have ended, I never told them the complete truth of why I was walking away. But we keep it from you for different reasons. Sometimes it is an attempt to spare your feelings. Sometimes it is because being vulnerable makes us uncomfortable. But most of the time, it is because we are simply scared of the entire experience. The crying, the yelling, the feelings – we feel emotionally threatened and overwhelmed.
From experience, I can tell you that ending a relationship via text is a cowardly move – but I can tell you why we do it. Because it is easier to hit the send button than it is having to stand in front of you and explain our actions. We know we will be asked why we gave you false hope and we don’t like to feel like a liar – even if we are one. We have already made our decision and we don’t want to have to deal with any of the fall out. It’s so much easier to just drop the bomb from a phone than it is to break your heart in person. It is lazy and cowardly and shows just how little we respect you and the love you have given us. But probably the biggest reason is, most of us don’t want you to talk us out of it. Because it happens more often that anyone of us would like to admit. So many of us have stayed because we felt guilted. Which just makes us think, why would you want to fight to be with someone who is openly telling you that they don’t want to be with you? And when we see that in you, a part of us loses respect for you. Because it’s hard to respect someone who doesn’t respect their own self worth.
All I truly know is this – we all simply need to honor the love we have received.
Meaning, if someone has made you feel loved and inspired. If someone has helped you through a rough point in your life and has made your shared bed feel like home – respect that. Walk away with dignity. And if that means standing in front of someone while they ask you question after question until they are satisfied with your answers, then so be it. They have earned that much of your time and respect. And they most certainly have earned more than a breakup text.
Like I have said all along, while you are under no obligation to tell people what they want to hear – if you have ever told someone you loved them then you DO owe them an explanation of why you are taking that away from them.