I Used to Date Someone Who Ruined Moments on Purpose

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It’s weird. I’m over it. Over us. I am.

After all, I was the one who ended it, wasn’t I? I usually am the one who initiate breakups. Not because I’m heartless. Or because I want to leave before I get hurt (it’s usually too late for to avoid getting hurt by the time things end). But because I notice problems fairly early, ones that are going to spiral out of control.

I’m willing to work through extraordinary relationship conflicts when I know that the relationship is worth it. For years and years.

But there are so many other times that the juice isn’t worth the squeeze. When maybe we could work like fiends on something, but it’s not really going to get us anywhere. We’re never both going to be as happy as we deserve to be. When we’re wasting our time.

And we were like that. We had a great time, but our problems were huge. And the more I got to know you, the more I realized that you weren’t being honest with me about the big things. When you stopped trying to pretend you were someone you weren’t, it became evident that we weren’t meant to be serious. That we weren’t really all that compatible.

I have never regretted breaking things off. You seem so much happier, and that makes me glad.

So I’m well over the relationship… and yet…

Every now and then I’ll find myself thinking about the weird things you did. Stuff that no one else had ever done (and I’ve dated a lot). One that pops up a lot is this:

There were so many times that I’d get vulnerable with you, and instead of listening or being supportive, you’d make an insulting joke. At the most hurtful times.

I asked you about it one time. And you’d said something like, “I’m sorry. I can’t help myself. There’s part of me that just wants to ruin moments like those. It makes a joke hit all that much harder.”

And I was never quite sure what to do with that. With how that squared with the rest of what we were, once upon a time. It was like getting slapped in a face I didn’t know I had.

Over time, this accumulated. The sum of a string of ruined moments. It made it very hard for me to see past everything that came next: The sudden turn in your behavior when you felt like we were solid.

The new and constant ‘splaining about things you had no actual knowledge of (and were demonstrably uninformed about).

And the final blow… when you told me everything you had ever lied about when we were together. I think it was meant as a parting salvo, when we were breaking up, a way to hurt me back for ending things. You framed it like I was too sensitive for you to tell me the truth, that I had some kind of personal defect that forced you to lie to me.

I had never heard this before. I’m frequently told by people who are close to me that I’m easy to tell the truth to. Because I don’t yell and I’m open minded — and I’m clear about wanting to know the truth, even if it hurts. I’m a lot of people’s confidants.

After you said that, I checked in with everyone I knew about that feedback. And they all shook their heads — and said it was you trying to take back every nice thing you ever said about me. To make me question the compliments you gave me, the feelings you expressed.

Because I had ended things — and I shouldn’t be entitled to those things anymore.

Who knows? Maybe they were right, but maybe they weren’t and they were all being too kind to me.

Anyway, it’s been years and years. I’m so grateful for what we had together — even if it got weird at the end. I don’t think of you much at all these days.

But… every now and then, I’ll remember how you used to ruin moments on purpose, at the strangest times. Maybe that’s why you did it. So you’d always be remembered.

Featured Image: CC 0 – Pixabay