There is an odd part of us that emerges during a breakup: one that is desperate, needy, angry, vindictive, and basically the opposite of who we were when we were happy and in love. This part of me is both a stranger, and a too frequent companion; I can’t say that I like her very much, but I see her so often that I’ve begun to embrace her.
I should give a quick backstory here: I am in the midst of a breakup with the person I’ve been dating for over two years. While we’ve had our share of difficulty, I thought that we would end up married and that my daughter would be able to experience the stability of a home with two people who were very much in love. Instead, my ex-boyfriend (let’s call him “P” for the sake of privacy – I’m not vindictive enough to give up his name) has broken up with me, every three months for the last year. Each time I begin to get comfortable with him, and think that a relationship between us may finally progress (to even remaining together for six months at a time!), he pulls away and finds a reason why he is unhappy.
This brings me to my topic: breakup games. How many of us have begged, cried, yelled, and tried to fight for a relationship that someone else just doesn’t want to be in? I know that I’ve done it each and every time. I’m a little ashamed to say that I have studied the internet for stories of how people got back together with their ex, hoping that I would find something that would work for me. I’ve taken down photos, I’ve thrown away gifts that P had given me, and even tonight I put the remainder of his things in a bag (which I plan to leave on his front porch). During this most recent breakup, I went as far as to ignore that it was happening, and just acted and treated him as though we were still together; until I was told last evening that this behavior makes him feel as though he is “not in control of his own life, and is giving him bad dreams” After a day of anger, I’m choosing to cut him out of my life completely, deleting his number from my phone, and telling him that I no longer wanted to speak to him.
My girlfriends have supported me through more than one crazy idea I had to get back at him and hurt him, which I’ve thankfully never followed through on! I’ve harassed him about dating, and tearfully screamed, “How could you be so selfish? How could you do this to me again? Did you ever even love me?” It’s all pretty melodramatic, but I can never seem to help myself in the moment. There is no holding back, and my emotions take over as I think about how I’ll never see him again, and that someone else will be taking my place in his life.
I’m beginning to think that he’s probably doing me a favor, I mean do I want to be married to someone who calls a divorce attorney every three months??? However, I can’t help but feel deeply hurt every single time he breaks up with me.
So this is my question to you, few, but dear readers: have you played breakup games? Have you tried to get your ex back? If you have, was it even worth doing?