Dating 101: Rearview Mirror
I have been speaking with a gentleman friend recently about my last relationship, and opened up to him in a way that is both comforting, and disturbing. We have never met, or even spoken on the phone. He lives in Los Angeles, is divorced, a dad, Jewish, tall and handsome, yet we have never met. He asked me out on JDate years ago and I declined his invitation as his son was young and I was not interested in dating someone with young children. He is an avid reader of this blog and has been commenting on it for years. He is kind and gentle, and he gets me on a deep level through reading.
We have experienced similar heartache, and what he has managed to do over the past few years is get to know me with no judgment. He will often question what I write, but it is always about understanding what I mean, not judging. He is a lovely man. and while somewhat odd that we have never met, I have come to value his opinion. He is my friend, and last night we had a conversation that forced me to look at my past relationship. It has been over 3 months since the Englishman broke my heart, and so I am looking at our relationship through the rear view mirror.
I don’t think I have ever loved a man as much as I loved him. I loved him so much, I put his needs ahead of my own. I am a nurturing, giving, and unselfish partner in general, but it was on another level with him. I saw my future with him in it. I changed who I was for him, and while most of it was in a really good way, some of it was not. In staring in the rearview mirror, it is clear I spent over a year loving a man who was incapable of loving me in the same way. It turns out the man I revered and gave my entire heart to, was an asshole. It is that simple.
He did not set out to hurt me, and nothing was done with malice, but that does not mean he is not an ass. His treatment of me when we were together was kind, it is in his breaking up with me that he was an asshole. There was no kindness, compassion, or explanation. It was simply an email letting me know it was over, and that was it. I didn’t get to say goodbye, or thank you, or fuck you. After giving everything, I didn’t get the respect of him looking me in the eye and telling me he wanted something else. The lack of decency in how he broke my heart is shocking.
I have cried every single day since he broke up with me. Some days it is a single tear as I remember something he said or did, and some days I am a weeping mess on the floor. It is when I look in the rearview mirror that I get clarity and am able to stop crying. Sadly, all this time later, I still pray he will call me. Luckily I also pray that should he ever call, I will have the strength to not answer the phone. I miss him more than I should. He was my best friend and the loss is unbearable. It is as if he died and I got no closure, but he is actually fine.
I am sure he is happy, and I want him to be happy. I have not stopped loving him. I will love him always. I really thought that if we were to break up, we would remain friends, as our friendship was strong and important. In the end the friendship clearly meant something different to him than it did to me. My ego is bruised of course, but this is more about my heart than my ego. In fact, more than my heart, it is about my soul. When you meet someone who can see through to your soul, and they walk away from you, it is devastating.
He knows me so there is no way he cannot know the pain I have been in. Even with this knowledge, he still did what he did, the way he did, so the only conclusion I can reach is that he is an asshole. He broke my spirit. I will fix it of course, and I hate to give him power, but he broke me. In speaking with my gentleman friend, I see it sometimes takes a stranger to show you the way. He has been a lovely to me, when the Englishman could not. He taught me to look in the rearview mirror, which ultimately gives me the closure I seek.
It’s not really closure as I don’t think I will ever have that, but it has been helpful. When you spend so much time walking with someone, then realize you are walking alone, it takes a minute to get into a comfortable stride again. When you keep looking back, it is easy to misstep, trip, and slow yourself down. I am hopeful my glances in the rearview mirror will eventually stop, and that I will find someone new to walk with me. Time will tell. They say good things come to those who wait, and so I will wait, count my blessings, and keep the faith.