Being in a relationship, being important in someone else’s life is the biggest self-image booster. This I could gather, when my glamorous self-image took a quiet exit with my ex.
When something important is taken away from your life, you start to ruminate at all other losses, real or imagined.
A beautiful relationship that lasted for years, having each other in our ups and downs. I was proud to have him. We were in sync, always. He was everything I could possibly imagine to live my life with.
We had a beautiful present. But never really figured out our future together.
Apparently, he did.
He called me up one day, and said his parents are getting his marriage fixed.
It was a relationship of 10 years, things could not have gone wrong. I have the slideshow of my future timed and fixed.
It couldn’t be real. I, being a perfect girlfriend felt the pressure to understand the dilemma and conflict he must be in. After all, it is difficult to convince conservative parents for an intercaste alliance.
He must take time and be given space. So we don’t talk anymore. I put a halt to my romantic relationship.
So, I shared this with my close friends. I had a perfect relationship; I cannot let them know something has been going wrong.
It cannot be his fault, he is trying his best. I tell myself everyday after the break up. I convey same to my friends.
My break up happened at a transitional point of my life. I was just leaving college, moving to a new city, new job, with no family/friends around.
While adjusting to new city, steering and struggling with my career, in few months I discover my ex-has gotten married.
I felt a sheer indignation.
I broke down for the first time, after my break-up.
I had my own grieving period, which lasted for 4 years.
Things I did in those 4 years:
How could he? Why didn’t he call again? Was he so sure I was going to be okay with everything? On repeat for 4 years.
Almost dated several people, constantly comparing my idea of perfect relationship.
Stalked him on social media.
Imagined how his life would be at present.
Imagined how happy he would be in his life with his partner.
Constantly wondered if he was cheating on me, planned his life beforehand, without me in his future.
Self-blame on not putting efforts to make things work.
How I pushed myself to move on:
Quickest way was to start dating someone.
I started reading. Reading a lot of books. That quite helped me with intellectualizing all the problems I have had or may have.
I picked up alcohol and cigarettes to cope with the stress. I assumed it will help me cope with the stress, but it didn’t. It further aggravated my state of mind, spilling onto other domains of my life.
Alcohol made me more vulnerable, it did not help me let go of things but acted like a magnet. Attracting all the things that I wanted to let go.
Talking to friends who validated how I should just let go. And move on. By doing either of two: Date or get married.
So, what gradually helped me move on in 4 years?
An objective evaluation of the relationship. When I say perfect, there were no problems in my relationship that I shared with him. That made it unreal. We never had a vision of us being together. It was too much for him to convince his parents, he had distanced himself already towards the end of relationship. Only forgot to communicate, maybe.
Talking to a counselor, who made me understand that I was stuck. I was looking for some answers. And I was not the right person to answer them at all. Something as major as a heartbreak had happened to me, which I did not see coming and did not get to know the reasons of it.
Confiding my feelings to few friends, who readily listened to everything I had to say. From wrongly making commitment to people I dated in order to move on, to my indulgence for alcohol. I started to feel better, when I had someone to talk to about anything, and not being judged about it.
I did understand after few years that I needed a closure. I was too shy and afraid to contact my ex. He knew I was always strong, contacting him meant acting weak and vulnerable. Almost like a loser.
How I finally found a closure
It was a random act. A friend through a conversation brought me to a point where contacting my ex would be an act of courage. Simply because I’m afraid of it.
Finally a conversation happened
Talking to someone after years, who you have thought about day in and day out. Missed the bond, at the same time hated them for not being around in your difficult times. I thought that would be tough. As we start to talk, I put my brave face and immediately come to the point.
“So, what exactly happened between us? Were you dating your prospective wife while you were with me? Why didn’t you break up with me before when you knew it was not going to work out?”
His parents were too adamant and conservative and would have disowned him had he married me.
All the missing pieces of information that my ex shared with me:
He could not have broken up with me. He wanted to stretch it out as far as he could have because he knew he would not be able to spend his life with me. He was selfish. And spineless. His words. Not mine.
He gave up on me when his parents actually threatened him of disowning him.
He did not contact me, because that’s what I had asked of him while we broke up on phone.
He thought of me all the years, and secretly wished I would contact him.
It was strange, that the things he said I knew it already.
So all these years, all I needed was that one friend who understood the pain I have been going through, and one phone call to get my closure.