On Thursday last week I saw an ex-boyfriend/ex-BFF (let’s call him Floyd). On Monday I saw another ex-boyfriend (Sebastien). Before, I couldn’t see them without a rush of panic, fear, heartache and nausea. But the funny thing was, nothing happened, not a thing.
I’m going through the loss of a friendship right now, and there’s all the stages you’d expect – denial, anger, grief, bargaining etc – but seeing these Floyd and Sebastien helped me realise something: no matter how bad the hurt, it does get better.
Floyd and I had been friends since high school. We dated once for a month in Gr 10 and then again for almost a year and a half in our first years at varsity. But even after we broke up, we remained friends. Ok, it took a while and a lot of fighting (we’re both heck of a stubborn) but the friendship remained. He dated new girls, I dated Sebatien. Then, last year, he ended our friendship for some rather ridiculous reasons. I have my suspicions that it was the not-so-new new GF that had a lot to do with it, but whatever the reasons – the results were the same. My best guy friend no longer wanted to be my friend. It was a long, rough year trying to get over this. When I did – once – respond to his break-up and express my feelings, I got blocked (burn). Then my friends were defriended and blocked (double burn). Drama to the llama max.
Sebastien was one of the most intense relationships I’ve ever had. I fell hard and fast and we dated for 9 months before he cheated on me and broke up with me. I’m not saying it’s all his fault, we had plenty of issues, but I let this breakup almost destroy me. I spiralled out and only with the help of a few, dedicated friends did I pull myself back up. But for years afterwards I couldn’t see him without feeling anxious and sick. He had a massive pull on me, even when we weren’t speaking.
But in the last few weeks, I’ve seen them both more than once. And you know what? It was ok. It didn’t hurt. I didn’t want to be sick. It was over. The hurt, it was healed.
I tend to get caught up in my emotions and unable to see beyond them, which has been tricky with the recent ending of a good friendship. But – surprisingly – Floyd and Sebastien have helped me see that nothing lasts forever – good and bad. So thank you, dear exes, for a lesson of the heart when I really needed the perspective.