Insecurity over partner's ex-boyfriend who dumped her
March 6, 2014 4:03 AM   Subscribe

I've been with my girlfriend for just over a year, and we are really in love. A few months into the relationship I discovered some diaries etc of her, which I know I should never have read, but did. I discovered how obsessed she was for years about an ex that dumped her and who she idealised, and now I really need some help to get out of this rut of insecurity and jealousy which I have created for myself.

She had previously hinted that she was very cut up about an ex, but later came to realise, with the help of friends, that they weren't really suited to each other. It sounded a bit unconvincing. In reading these diary entries from a few years back, I discovered just how obsessed she was with this guy she went out with for only 3-4 months, and who then rejected her in some way. She was extremely depressed about it and every time they met up after this for the next two years she was sent into depression. She idealised this guy for years(!) after they stopped dating, and even though she dated other people she still idealised him.

I've brought it up with her and admitted reading these, apologised profusely, and been forgiven. She assured me this was all ancient history. However, I still feel terrible about what I read.

I've tried analysing my thoughts to see why I feel so uneasy about this. I think it's the intensity of feelings she had for this person - a person who dumped her! - for years after the relationship had ended. Even though she was seeing other people, she still obsessed over this person. It makes me feel like he must have been amazing, and that makes me feel very insecure. Does she compare me to him? If he came back, would she leave me?

I've never felt insecure before in my life. This has totally transformed me, and I really need help to get these self-destructive thoughts out of my head.

Any advice and realistic perspective would be really useful - especially from girls who have been in a similar situation - i.e. have been dumped by someone, idealised them after it, and then moved on.

Thank you.
posted by lichen to Human Relations (32 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
I think maybe you've never experienced really having your heart broken by someone. I don't think her behavior is unusual at all. Many people carry torches for exes. And many people blow things up to be more than what they are. What she did with the ex is what you are doing about your situation - obsessing. She's moved on and so should you. To quote Frozen, "Let it go."

Oh and good on you for fessing up to her. Hopefully you've learned your lesson about snooping.
posted by NoraCharles at 4:20 AM on March 6, 2014 [12 favorites]

The mean response: obviously you were insecure before, otherwise you wouldn't have read her diary. Secondly, her previous obsession was actually about her own insecurities...the obsessing about the "one who got away" is rarely because the dumper was actually the best person on earth. Obviously they weren't, they were incompatible and dated for a short time. Her diary revealed her own insecurities, your snooping revealed yours. Neither of those things really has much to do with your present relationship in terms of whether she would leave you for him if he returned. And hint: he's not going to. Maybe both go to couple's counseling?
posted by bquarters at 4:21 AM on March 6, 2014 [17 favorites]

Taking a few years to get over someone is not unusual, and it can be surprisingly common in disproportionately short relationships. Her intense feelings for a boyfriend of 3 months weren't because he was so wonderfully great; they were likely because they broke up while she was still in the brand new, intense crushing, honeymoon part of the relationship. She never got a chance to see the guy and her relationship with him as anything other than idealized; it was all yanked out from under her.

These happen, they hurt, they're getoverable, and they say absolutely nothing about the ex or how you compare to them. I've been there before, and it was only with some time and distance that I realized the guy wasn't all that great anyway.

And don't read her diaries ever again. There's a reason people write about their feelings instead of talking through them with other people.
posted by Metroid Baby at 4:48 AM on March 6, 2014 [11 favorites]

Dude. She's with YOU because she wants to be with YOU.
This is a blessing.
Treat her as a blessing every day.
Then she will start thinking and journaling about how in love she is with YOU.
posted by John Kennedy Toole Box at 4:55 AM on March 6, 2014 [6 favorites]

The beauty of journaling is that one can just let their thoughts out without worry that their words will be scrutinized and judged, require explanations. It's a great tool for therapy and working confusion out. When people journal, a lot more can come from their subconscious than if they are writing to someone. In some ways it's like dreaming, the scenarios we think of may not make much sense, but it s a way of working through complex feelings and putting more concrete images in our mind, but they need not necessarily be taken as literal. For example, I have dreams that I am being pursued and then have sex with my boss even though in reality I am in no way attracted to this person, as well as I am very happily married. I read that this is a subconscious desire to get attention for our work and to have a more direct relationship with our boss, not that we really want to have sex. The sex part represents having a better feeling about our work relationship and be recognized for our awesomeness, which may be lacking. Your gf may have not really felt obsessed with this guy until he pulled this move, which doesn't sound like he did it in a very compassionate way, and that would anyone feeling confused.

I would believe what she is telling you.
posted by waving at 5:02 AM on March 6, 2014 [3 favorites]

When you date someone, there's the person you are dating and then there's the daydreams about who that person is and what the future looks like with them. Then when it ends, you mourn the end of those daydreams and imagined future.

Don't feel insecure over daydreams and imagined future.
posted by Houstonian at 5:02 AM on March 6, 2014 [4 favorites]

I may be jumping to conclusions, but it sounds like she was relatively young when they dated. For many of us, our teens/early twenties were very intense; we clung to relationships and affinity groups because we hadn't really figured out who we were yet, and that gave these things (and people) outsized importance. Remember that she is a different person now, and that the grown up her is choosing you.
posted by snickerdoodle at 5:12 AM on March 6, 2014 [1 favorite]

That type of obsession and idealization can be much more about something going on with the person doing it, than about its object. An awareness that there's a need, but a fear or reluctance to look inward to resolve it, for any of a million reasons. And now, it's resolved for her.

I've never felt insecure before in my life.

If this is literally true, I can't help but wonder if it's why you peeked at her diary. Insecurity can be awful, but it can also ultimately build qualities that are valuable, especially in relationships. Empathy, perspective, and so on.
posted by gnomeloaf at 5:18 AM on March 6, 2014 [5 favorites]

Thanks for all the replies. They are all excellent and I already feel a bit better.

Firstly, you are correct - I've never had my heart broken like that. I was in a very long relationship before this one, but it fizzled out over many years and there was no real heart break at the end. So, because of this, I have a hard time understanding how she felt or feels about it.

In response, yes I agree I must have felt insecure to look at her diaries. I think this was because she had told me she had been cut up about this guy, and it left me feeling like I needed to understand it better. I know it was a terrible thing to do, and I have never done it since, nor will I ever.

I don't keep a diary, and never have, and I admit I don't fully understand why people do - so it is useful for me to hear your interpretations of diary-keeping. I see now that it is quite a lot about fantasies and dreams.

When people say "she's with you because she wants to be with you", my cruel mind tells me "maybe, but if she hadn't been dumped would she still be with him? Am I a poor replacement for the person she idealised?" I know this is irrational and self-destructive.

She was in her mid-twenties at the time, and yes, I think she was in the honeymoon phase and he had no qualms about it - little compassion about it. I think she was left reeling.

Anyway, thanks all for responding - very helpful indeed.
posted by lichen at 5:41 AM on March 6, 2014

If you weren't insecure you wouldn't have read her journals. And if you say you just did it out of straight up nosiness, frankly that's even worse.

Reading someone's journal is like looking into their brain. I'd venture to guess that the majority of people have had at least one romantic interest over which they've obsessed, especially when they were young, but you just don't know about it because you didn't read all of their journals. I certainly had my fair share of getting my heart broken and mourning it and writing about it in my youth, but that doesn't mean I'm not 100% over those guys (and in fact feel like I dodged bullets not ending up with any of them) or that I don't love my husband more than I ever thought I loved any of them.
posted by amro at 5:41 AM on March 6, 2014 [1 favorite]

"maybe, but if she hadn't been dumped would she still be with him? Am I a poor replacement for the person she idealised?"

Well yeah, probably. But that also goes for every single person she--and you, for that matter--has ever dated.

Ask yourself this simple question: who is she dating now?

Focus on that answer.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 5:53 AM on March 6, 2014 [3 favorites]

Sorry, to clarify: yes she might well still be with him, no after this length of time you are not a poor substitute.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 5:56 AM on March 6, 2014

"maybe, but if she hadn't been dumped would she still be with him? Am I a poor replacement for the person she idealised?"

Yup, and if she was born a man, you couldn't date her. And if she got hit by a bus six years ago, you wouldn't date her. So don't worry about what might have happened.
posted by xingcat at 6:04 AM on March 6, 2014 [10 favorites]

I'm with John Kennedy Toole Box. Enjoy your goddess for crying out loud! Plus give her flowers, bake her pies and say nice things about her shoes. Unless she wears Uggs, then take her out and buy her a pair.
posted by ouke at 6:08 AM on March 6, 2014 [4 favorites]

Here's a little story for you. Mr. gudrun's friend P (who is in his 50's) was obsessing for years about his high school girlfriend, including all during a serious long term relationship as an adult. High school girlfriend was always the one who got away, beautiful, smart, no one could compare. Then a couple of years ago P finally met the right woman. They are now married and very happy. And, guess what, he has never mentioned high school girlfriend again. The moral of this story is that if you and girlfriend are right together, she will be thinking about you, not old boyfriend, no matter how she may have once felt about old boyfriend previously to meeting you.
posted by gudrun at 6:25 AM on March 6, 2014 [5 favorites]

Here's the thing, sometimes the way in which you get dumped makes you question everything about yourself and because you got dumped while you were still into the person, it can stay with you for years.

Also, allow that youth and inexperience counts for something.

When we're young, our brains are just learning about love relationships, and just as when we first learn how to drive, our actions are deliberate and over reaching. So if we like a guy, he must be the greatest thing since sliced bread. As an adult, you realize that people have their flaws, but kids don't see that.

So if you're dumped, before you see the flaws, before you understand that you're not compatible, and the dumper is kind of a jerk about it, it creates a massive CRUSH response. Suddenly the guy was your soul mate, he was the only person who understood you, he was the only guy you would ever have babies with.

Hopefully, you interact with him regularly and see him for what he is, a selfish jerk or a frat-boy idiot, or whatever. You grow out of it. But if you don't see him again, he can be anything in your mind. And if this awesome person doesn't like YOU, well then...insert years of fuckwittage here.

So your girlfriend is a totally different person than the girl she was with this guy. This guy isn't even close to what she imagined him to be. And now that we're older and wiser and we've grown into our brains and our hormones, we can see that.

You were a jerk for reading her diaries. You know that.

So put it in perspective and move on. If you can't, break up, because she deserves better than a guy who thinks that everything is all about him.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 6:27 AM on March 6, 2014 [18 favorites]

You got off easy buddy. Reading my personal shit would put you in the doghouse no matter how much you apologized. Actually it's more likely you and your belongings would be out on the sidewalk. I poured my heart into my journals in my teens and early twenties because I could say things I could never say to anyone else, even close friends. I destroyed all my journals from that time for precisely that reason. I would probably still be rather embarrassed if someone read them, especially the parts where 17 year-old me naively thought she'd lost the love of their life.

You were insecure before you read them (or else you wouldn't have) and now you're even more insecure because this person you love and are intimate with once had all these massive feelings for someone you have likely never even laid eyes on. Guess what? I love my current partner more than anyone. If I still kept a journal, it would contain none of the overly dramatic foolishness I would have written about as a younger person. That was about lust and infatuation, nothing like the love I have for my partner now as an adult.
posted by futureisunwritten at 6:28 AM on March 6, 2014 [7 favorites]

Here's the thing. I'm a little obsessive over the guy I dated before my husband. We run into him all the time and Things Are Weird, even though it's been over five years and I'm happy as a clam with my wonderful partner.

I obsess over my ex because a) being with him came at a very formative time in my life, and we did a lot of things in ways that really challenged my assumptions about how relationships work.

But more importantly, b) he brought out a lot of the frustrations about myself and relationships that I have had all my life due to someone else very important to me: my (insane) mom. They are both passive aggressive nutballs whom I bent over backwards trying to predict and accommodate, and I never felt like I was good enough for either of them. Still don't, because my mom is still driving me up the wall... and sometimes when I see my ex, I think, "Really? So you'll calm down and make compromises with [his wife], but I wasn't worth doing that for?"

So a lot of the things I've discussed in therapy, and eventually with my fabulous and very understanding husband, stem from the FEELINGS I experienced, not the PERSON who brought those feelings out. I continue to work on my boundaries with my mom, but when I think about the things related to my ex (like if I have a dream or something) I step back and think about what in my life is making me feel like I'm not good enough or wound up in a particular emotion.

Again: think about the valid feelings and emotions she is probably feeling, and try to understand why she might be feeling that way. Then consider supporting her as she works through them. If you're anything like my husband, it will make you an absolute rock star whom she knows she can trust.
posted by Madamina at 7:25 AM on March 6, 2014 [5 favorites]

One of the reasons she probably obsessed over this guy is that she only dated him for 3-ish months. That's just enough time to develop an attachment, and to see only the attractive traits in the other person. He wasn't a fully 3D person to her yet.

There is something about getting dumped at that 3-month mark that has a really specific type of obsessive pain attached to it. The person *does* still seem amazing in your mind because they haven't shown you their true humanity -- their flaws, their annoying quirks. They are still preserved in amber in your mind as a perfect specimen.

Your girlfriend isn't alone in having had an obsession/depression with a short-term guy. It's actually pretty common. And because it's pretty common, maybe knowing that will help you understand that it's not something specific about this guy, or your gal's former relationship to him, and therefore not something you personally have to feel badly about.
posted by nacho fries at 7:44 AM on March 6, 2014 [3 favorites]

Agreed with all those above who've said that her obsession back then about this ex says a lot more about who and where she was at that point in her life than it does about him, specifically.

But I also wonder whether that could be part of it, for you - the realisation she wasn't always the same person you know today. Obviously you know she had a life before she met you, and experiences back then which were part of that life, but there's something very visceral about reading it in her own words like that. It's your girlfriend and yet... it's not.

A few years ago I read something my husband wrote for his school newspaper as a teenager. It wasn't anything personal or significant, but it did put forward a couple of views he doesn't hold as an adult (nothing offensive, just teenage superficial know-it-all-ness). And I found it really surprisingly hard to read, because at the same time it was obviously him, it was also this bratty-sounding 16-year-old I didn't know at all. Would I have even liked him if we'd met back then? Probably not (although equally probably, that would've been because my 14-year-old self would have dismissed him for not liking horses and not knowing Elvish!).

More than anything else, what I found strange about that experience was truly, profoundly realising that however well I know my husband now, he didn't spring fully-formed from the aether and then sit around waiting for me to turn up. Nor was his younger self any less of a person than his current self just because it's not the one I know. We're all in part the sum of our experiences and of our past decisions and feelings - he's the person I know today because of all his past, not despite it.

So you can try to explain away your girlfriend's past feelings for that ex as immature or just a phase we all go through and grow out of, if you want, and you'll probably be accurate enough about it. Still, I think a better way to deal with it would be to choose not to see her old-diary-self as just a less-developed version of the girlfriend you have now, and instead accept it as reminding you she was her own, whole self before she met you, intense feelings and all. If her ex hadn't broken up with her then, would they still be together? Yeah, maybe, but so what? He did, they're not, and quite possibly if she hadn't had the experience of falling for and then losing and pining after him, she'd never have become the person you love now.
posted by Catseye at 8:17 AM on March 6, 2014 [10 favorites]

lichen: "In reading these diary entries from a few years back, I discovered just how obsessed she was with this guy she went out with for only 3-4 months, and who then rejected her in some way. She was extremely depressed about it and every time they met up after this for the next two years she was sent into depression. She idealised this guy for years(!) after they stopped dating, and even though she dated other people she still idealised him."

A diary is often held up as a sort of confession of what's "really" happening in contradiction of what someone does or says in their day-to-day life. But a diary is not intended to record the whole truth, it's a place to write and think things through for yourself without needing to establish context. You don't necessarily write things down in a diary because you absolutely know that they're true; people often write to help them figure out what they really feel, or to get some catharsis from saying unkind or unfair things "out loud" to themselves, etc.

Our brains like to turn things into a story, and reading a concentrated chunk of someone ruminating about unresolved feelings and memories makes it seem like that's THE story. But...consider all the other million other actions and thoughts she would have had on those days that aren't recorded in the diary.
posted by desuetude at 8:42 AM on March 6, 2014 [2 favorites]

I agree with lichen's thoughts. A diary often serves as a raw outpouring of emotion, not meant to be read by another person as entirely factual, or the true situation. She chooses you. She is with you now. That is what is important.
posted by 1270AEH at 8:52 AM on March 6, 2014

You're reading how she felt THEN, not today. She's told you how she feels now. Her past is her past and you have no entitlement to it. She's far less likely to drop you for an ex, than she is to drop you for being an insecure partner who can't respect her boundaries.

You do the only thing you can do. Focus on where you are now. Spend time with her and enjoy what you have.
posted by 26.2 at 8:53 AM on March 6, 2014 [1 favorite]

Obsession has little to do with the value of a person and a lot to do with not wanting to think about something else in one's life.

Now you're doing it. What else might be bothering you?
posted by Ironmouth at 9:02 AM on March 6, 2014 [6 favorites]

Even though she was seeing other people, she still obsessed over this person. It makes me feel like he must have been amazing, and that makes me feel very insecure.

You're operating on a flawed premise: that she was obsessed with him because he was so great.

There are so many reasons a person can be obsessed with someone else. A few off the top of my head:

1. The obsesser is young/insecure and the obsessee possesses traits they'd like to have.
2. The obsesser is lonely or lost in some way and they think that the obsessee's love or admiration will make them feel whole.
3. The obsessee is actually really manipulative and has in some way made the obsesser feel that they NEED the obsessee, or need their love/validation/etc.
4. The obsesser experienced something with the obsessee they never had before (ie, love, limerance, great sex, crazy adventures, whatever) and it takes the obsesser a while to realize they can experience those things without the obsessee.

Notice that none of these, except maybe #1, is about how great the obsessee is.

I can say that I've been obsessed with guys I dated for too long after we broke up twice in my life, and in both cases it was a mix of all four of these factors. In both cases I was young and a bit insecure. In both cases I experienced something with the guy that I hadn't before and it was a bit of a revelation. And in both cases, the guy was crazy manipulative and planted a lot of seeds that made me feel like I needed to keep him in my life and that things might eventually work out even after I knew rationally that I didn't actually WANT things to work out!

Oh, and yes, if they hadn't broken up, they still might be together, but that's not necessarily a good thing. I am SO RELIEVED now that I'm not with either of these guys I was obsessed with!

So all that is to say that this guy is not really your problem. If you can't get over it, it might be worth to talk it over with a therapist.
posted by the essence of class and fanciness at 9:46 AM on March 6, 2014 [7 favorites]

From a MeFite who would prefer to remain anon:
"I was totally obsessed with an ex when I was 18 (who I'd gone out with for oooh, about six weeks). Obsessed for about 2 years. If google or facebook had existed back then I would totally have stalked him.

It was a combination of 1, 2 and 4 or essence's reasons above, plus he made me feel really insecure and like I had to prove my worth to him, because he was quite emotionally distant. I always felt clingy, and always felt like I wasn't cool enough, or pretty enough... he was terrible for me. Not deliberately, we were just an awful match (I'm sure he thought I was a complete psycho - I have never behaved like that with anyone else I have ever dated, I am usually the less involved one/the dumper. He just had a terrible effect on me).

We would never have stayed together long-term - eventually I would have gotten sick of crying on my way home every time I saw him (I hope!). But after we broke up I felt awful - all the things I had worried he thought about me were obviously true! So the only way to fix that was to convince him I was great and maybe get him back, which was not actually possible since we lived in different countries at that point and this was pre-internet so I made do with thinking about him non-stop for a year. With hindsight he wasn't anything special at all. Average looking, a bit pretentious, I was much cleverer and more dynamic than him (and yes, I google-stalked him a couple of years ago, he's not done much with his life. His wife looks weird).

You really don't want to be eliciting that kind of reaction in your girlfriend, it's just the after-effects of a really toxic relationship. Thank your lucky stars she isn't like that with you - she'd be clingy, tearful, demanding - awful. I'm so glad I've never felt like that with anyone else. I've been madly in love with my husband for 15 years and he's amazing. I feel happy and secure with him. No way would I swap."
posted by jessamyn at 10:53 AM on March 6, 2014 [5 favorites]

Keep in mind that this is about you, not her. She's over it. Not only is she over the ex-, but she's been quite generous in forgiving your for a pretty unforgivable transgression and violation of her privacy. If you insist on keeping the torch alive for him, consider getting some therapy to address your insecurities. Whatever you do, don't make it a part of your relationship with her that she needs to deal with.
posted by quince at 12:42 PM on March 6, 2014

My husband and I married (16 years ago) after dating for less than five months (and while living in different countries, so, with very little face time or even phone time). But he and I just knew the other was The One because we'd had such amazing learning experiences with our previous lovers. My husband had been engaged twice before (to the only two real girlfriends he'd ever had) and I'd dated a whole lot of totally inappropriate men, so we each came to our relationship with very different pasts: his high-quality-low-quantity, and mine just the opposite. But both kinds of experiences were essential for (a) each of us becoming who we were as adults, and (b) each of us knowing what we needed, what we could not stand, and what was just right in a partner.

My take, then, is that your GF's past with this man has been an essential part of making her who she is now, and showing her what she wants/needs/can't stand in a BF. And guess what -- you fit the bill! She likes you! She even loves you enough to forgive you reading her diaries, which, Wow, is so incredible! Yeah for you!

So, you can feel incredibly secure that this introspective, emotional, loving woman loves YOU. She has shown herself to care deeply, think deeply, love deeply, and even forgive genuinely, and you're the one benefitting from all her awesomeness. Nice work :)
posted by Capri at 3:29 PM on March 6, 2014

I cannot agree with Ironmouth enough. Obsessing over an ex was working through insecurities, values, challenges that the relationship/break-up threw up about the person's understanding of themselves. It is not very much about the object of obsession. Journalling about it was a very healthy thing to do, getting that stuff out of her head and onto paper where it somehow has less power. Sounds like there was a lot of stuff she had to work through, but she's done it because now she's with you, and, as others have commented, so keen on you that she will forgive you for completely violating her privacy like that.

Now you are obsessing. And just as her obsession wasn't really about the guy who dumped her but about all the stuff it brought up for her, your obsession sounds like it is also about something else. I won't presume to tell you what it is, but you have admitted to feeling insecure. What else is going on for you? Why do you feel the need to sabotage a relationship with a wonderful woman, first by reading her personal journals and next by continuing to doubt her? What is it that makes you need to blame her dead-and-buried obsession for an ex rather than admit to yourself? Only you can answer these questions. Maybe you should try journalling yourself.
posted by Athanassiel at 4:20 PM on March 6, 2014

One of the reasons she probably obsessed over this guy is that she only dated him for 3-ish months.

EXACTLY! I would say this is probably THE reason.

Want to know who I've been most obsessed about and "cut up" over in my life? I'll give them to you in reverse order.

3. A guy I dated for 3 weeks. (He dumped me and I could not eat properly for over a month.)
2. A guy I had a crush on for an entire school year in college and then finally, finally kissed THE NIGHT BEFORE my parents were coming to take me home at the end of the year. He was from another country and I never saw him again. I thought about him for years.
1. A guy who I NEVER DATED AT ALL and said like FIVE SENTENCES TO. He was one of my teaching assistants in college. I spent literally hundreds of hours daydreaming about that guy.

Are these the only crushes and obsessions that I've had in my life, no. But these are the biggest ones want to know why? Because I ended up dating some of the other folks! And then they became real humans. And then I had some pretty rude awakenings when I found where my fantasies of them were just my own imagining and projections. In some cases some VERY rude awakenings. Which were kind of scary in a way when I realized I had just projected some wonderful attributes wholesale onto people who didn't have them AT ALL and in fact showed no sign of them! Where did I get that, I don't know, it's totally weird.

Anyway, if she had dated this guy for longer, I think there's a good chance the same thing might have happened with her.
posted by cairdeas at 5:30 PM on March 6, 2014 [4 favorites]

On one hand, it's totally normal for someone to idealise an ex, or even someone you had strong feelings about but never really got anywhere with, as cairdeas attests to.

On the other hand, it's fairly neurotic to do that about someone for several years like that. It's not outside the realm of normal, but it's also not really a good or healthy tendency.

But none of that is really the issue here. You told her what you did, and she assured you that this was ancient history, but you didn't believe her on some emotional level. It sounds like you're feeling insecurity about whether or not you can trust her, which is worrisome because you also violated her privacy, and it sounds like maybe you did that to soothe nascent feelings of insecurity. I'm wondering how true it is that you've never felt insecure in your whole life before due to the fact that you violated her privacy like that. That's often controlling behavior, though you may not have had that in mind consciously when you did it.

I think you're the one who needs to get over your feelings of insecurity. You need to trust your girlfriend and she needs to be able to trust you. I would suggest forgetting about this previous relationship of hers and working on building trust and openness between you and her now. That's the only thing that matters; not her past, but y'all's present.
posted by clockzero at 6:20 PM on March 6, 2014

I dated a guy for about 3-4 months and after we broke up I obsessed about him for 2-3 years after. Much stalking on google and facebook occurred during this time period, and my tumblr was full of poorly-veiled references to him (just in case he checked it haha...). It was a short but very intense relationship; suddenly he went from worshiping me to complete indifference, and that experience was very traumatic.

Over those 2-3 years of obsession, I stopped caring gradually. Now I've recovered and have happily dated others. I recognize the strength of the feelings I had, but I'm SO glad we broke up. Even though he's good looking and we do have interests in common, I would rather crawl over broken glass now then ever date him again. He makes for a horrible boyfriend, but things moved too fast at the time and I got swept away before I realized it.

Now that I'm older and more mature, I try to remember to "love moderately".

"These violent delights have violent ends
And in their triumph die, like fire and powder,
Which as they kiss consume: the sweetest honey
Is loathsome in his own deliciousness
And in the taste confounds the appetite:
Therefore love moderately; long love doth so;
Too swift arrives as tardy as too slow. "
- Romeo and Juliet
posted by koakuma at 7:31 PM on March 6, 2014 [4 favorites]

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