I have not been on here in forever, but I thought I would give an update on my life in the form of a letter to my ex-boyfriend.  The two of us do not stay in touch anymore but lately I have conversations with him in my head all day (yep, i'm a nutcase, that's why I'm here 🙂  so I decided to write it out.

Dear C.,

I wanted to write and thank you for what you've done for me.  You came into my life and stayed just long enough to make me fall madly in love with you.  When I met you, the evil spell E. had cast over me was broken – something I didn't know was possible.  I have never met anyone who made me feel the way you did.

Then you left, and I thought I was broken without you.  You and I created a very bad and complicated situation between us after we officially broke up and continued sleeping together and then you slept with that girl.  In chasing after love I hurt myself and lost the person who had promised to be a good friend to me for life.  That situation and some of the things you said afterwards hurt so bad that I've been thinking about them ever since.  For example: that my kids were 90% of my life, that we only talked about my kids, that you preferred someone with a career, that you couldn't understand how I could run away with my ex, and then there was the way you criticized me for having sex with E. when he visited the kids here.

I have struggled so hard with what you said because your opinion meant so much to me, and also because you destroyed my fragile confidence in myself and made me think no worthwhile person would want me.

But finally I've come to the point where I can thank you for something: your honesty.  Whereas my mom and my counselor and my friends have all coddled me and told me it was ok to take it easy, to stay home with my kids for a while, and basically hide from the world, you gave me a wake up call. 

I know that you said those things partly to defend what you did (and I still think you showed a very disturbing lack of control and lack of respect for me and for her), but a lot of what you said was true: my kids WERE 90% of my life, you and I did talk about them a lot (although we talked about lots of other things too), I could have a career and I don't, and I did hurt my family by running away with my ex and hurt myself by having sex with him after I left him. 

I've been feeling hurt all this time – thinking "How could he say these things to me?  How could he treat me like that when he knows I am so sensitive?"  But I am a big girl, I made my choices and I can see that my life was unbalanced when I met you.

I can also see now that it's better that you left me, because these past few months have been the first time since I was 19 that I've been single.  I literally went from talking with E every day on the phone to meeting you and transferring my affections to you.  No, I did not love him anymore at that point, but I depended on him for emotional support.  He was my addiction, as I tried to explain to you before.  Then you came along and I wanted to continue my pattern of co-dependency – I wanted to get my identity from you, to be proud of myself based on who I was dating.

If we had stayed together I would not have been able to grow into my own, independent person the way I am beginning to now.

I really did love you, and still do, but I need to learn to love myself.  When I learn to do that I will have more to bring to a relationship.

Children are important but I do need more in my life.

I was caught up in taking care of E and worrying about him for so long that I forgot to worry about myself.

I have dated a lot since August.  So far I have not found anyone special.  I have had fun and learned a lot, though.  Now I have reached a point where I no longer NEED to be with someone, and that makes me happy!

The desperation that our break up brought out in me – "No, no!  Don't leave me to deal with the world on my own!" – is gone.  I am free for the first time since I met Elias – for the first time since I became sexually active, really, for that is when I began to think I couldn't be alone and be happy.

Life is hard, and full of downs; I must remember that it is not a fairy tale, and it takes hard work, constantly, to keep things under control. 

However, I know now I can be on my own, and I can work hard, and from now on I will do the best I can for myself.  No more attempted short cuts.  That is what I have learned from you.

I still think you're amazing, and I love you.  You're not the perfect angel I once believed you were – you behaved badly in the end – but I forgive you.  I know you're not a shallow person and I don't blame you for running from my problems – why should you have wanted to involve yourself with a married woman with 2 young children and no income? I was not doing that great and I admit that now.

In the end, I clung and you ran out of fear, just like I was afraid we would.  I take comfort in the phrase "If you love something, let it go.  If it comes back, it is meant to be."  I have learned to let go, and for me that was a very hard lesson to learn. 

I know that you have a new girlfriend now, and I accept that.  Maybe in time, when I have finished learning my lessons, and you have learned yours, we will be together again ( don't worry, I'm not holding my breath).  You and I are a lot alike.  In the end you labeled me a family person and told me we are completely different but you know that's not true.  We are perfectly matched in passion and personality.  I don't need a family  man – I need to get my life in order and then someday I will be able to have the kind of man I want – gentle but free, calm but passionate, sensible but a little bit crazy, generous with his love and confident in himself, unthreatened by my ex or my kids, and proud of me for having had problems and overcome them.

So, this is my time to grow, my friend, and my hope for you is that you grow too, and become even more wonderful and overcome your selfishness and your fears.  I believe you have it in you to do whatever you set out to do.

Thank you for setting me free.

J

 

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