Processing news of infidelity in last relationship - can I hasten this?
November 2, 2016 10:49 AM   Subscribe

I recently discovered that my ex-partner was seeing someone else before we split up and has been together with her ever since. At the time I was aware that he was visiting her house frequently for 'band practices', but it seems the 'music' they were making together was of a different sort to that which I was led to believe. I feel like I'm reliving the early days of our painful breakup all over again. Please help me process this more quickly.

Eugh, just eugh.

Things I'm struggling with:

1) I feel like I don't even know who he is any more. I've spent the past year struggling to come to terms with breaking up with someone who I thought was my best friend, and now, what?

2) Our social lives are intertwined in unavoidable ways. I will probably see them both this weekend. How to deal?

3) I'm reassessing the final months of our relationship and keep having horrible recollections, such as when I last minute decided to meet him after work for an event and couldn't work out why he seemed so distant. Now I realise that she was also at that event and he was probably planning to spend the evening with her. She came to our parties. She came to our gigs and events. I tried to make friends with her though I thought she was quite reserved. I was happy that he had a new creative outlet in their musical project!!!

4) I trusted him and worked so damn hard to save our relationship. Now I just remember all the times he withdrew emotionally, rejected me physically or replied cryptically to my entreaties to talk it out, and I feel so stupid.

5) The reason I found out was because a kind friend took me aside and filled me in. She felt it necessary because I brought up some positive chats and meetups I'd had with him since the breakup and she sensed I was nurturing a hope that one day we might get back together.

Finding out that pretty much everyone else in our social circle was aware of this situation hurts too, especially as I'd been very positive and complimentary about him in general after the breakup.

6) I went no contact for six months, but had tentatively been out for coffee with him (at his instigation) and he'd come over to mine to pick up some items I was giving away and ended up staying for dinner.

Needless to say, during these meetings he didn't mention the new relationship, though I did wonder why he seemed to harbour so much guilt when I thought our breakup was about simple incompatibility (two and a half year relationship, after six months living together I wanted to plan for the future and feel like I was on a team, he kept deflecting me until he confessed he couldn't commit to a plan).

7) I'm now piecing together what I know of his relationship history and although he never stated outright that he had cheated before, he did tell me that he'd fallen in love with someone else whilst he was with his previous girlfriend. I thought we were different though. Huh.

8) I've suffered from anxiety and depression since our breakup in January, with therapy and medication from March until June. I thought I was coming out of these black moods, but I feel like I've been thrown back to square one. Trying to stay busy but I keep crying. Overthinking madly, making endless comparisons between her and me - obviously she is beautiful and talented. Do I wallow? Do I set this aside and plough on regardless? I feel like a fresh scar has been ripped open again.

9) I have not been in touch with him and do not intend to be. I googled her once to see her picture, but will not again. I am still no contact with him on social media.

All advice and any similar stories gratefully received. Thanks all.
posted by doornoise to Human Relations (31 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Oh, two more things: in the last couple of months I have been tentatively online dating, to depressing results, which had made me even more inclined to romanticise the past.

I am a 37-year-old woman and not conventionally good looking. He is 44 and conventionally good looking.

When we split up my mother said, 'He'll find someone straight away.'
posted by doornoise at 10:56 AM on November 2, 2016 [1 favorite]

I am so so sorry that you're dealing with this. I don't have a lot of concrete advice, but know that THIS IS NOT YOUR FAULT. It is not your fault that he is a lying jerk, and strung you along. It is *not* your fault. It is not your fault he lied. It is not your fault he chose someone else over you (and it looks like he had a pattern from your story). It is not your fault you were betrayed.

Don't let your brain think otherwise.
posted by bibliogrrl at 10:59 AM on November 2, 2016 [17 favorites]

I've been through this. We knew each other for years before dating, and it accelerated quickly. After a while he told me he "just didn't feel that thing you're supposed to feel when you're in love" and wanted to save us both from a one-side relationship. Even though we were talking marriage and babies, yeah.

I found out later that he just didn't feel that thing because he was feeling it for the OTHER woman he'd been simultaneously sleeping with. I slowly realized he's a narcissistic asshole, that all those "crazy fun" times may have been his manic episodes, and that I dodged a bullet. That other woman became his third wife.

The sooner you can look upon this sordid adventure as your having dodged a bullet, the faster you will recover. You lost who you thought was a best friend. But really, he was a liar. And your best friends don't lie to you.
posted by ImproviseOrDie at 11:00 AM on November 2, 2016 [51 favorites]

Hindsight is a blessing and a curse. I usually take comfort in the fact that I made the best decisions at the time with the information I had then. You cannot know what you did not know. (I don't think your friend did you any favor by telling you btw. There are other ways to say "forget about the bum". The other thing I try to remember in situations like this is that I have no control over other people's character, morals or decisions. You cannot know he is a bad person until he does something bad.

I am not sure how you personally can move on because I don't know you well enough, but know that this is not your fault. He is the bad actor here. Your judgement wasn't poor. It was based on information you had at the time not on something you knew nothing about.
posted by AugustWest at 11:03 AM on November 2, 2016 [3 favorites]

I'm sure it has been incredibly painful to learn about, but you just dodged one hell of a bullet. This guy is a deceptive and manipulative piece of shit who you now no longer need to think about. All you need to know about the other woman is that she is saddled with a man who she will never be able to fully trust. If anything, she deserves pity.

A couple more years, a wedding, and more ties would have only worsened the pain and regret. Run free into the wind!
posted by defreckled at 11:06 AM on November 2, 2016 [24 favorites]

It sounds like you just heard about this pretty recently. I think all of your reactions seem pretty natural, and that you probably need to have them in order to process this. This is a huge betrayal and of course you're re-thinking the end of your relationship and the time since then.

You might need to wallow a bit before you can clearly see what a bullet you dodged. Take care of yourself. If you need to skip out on something this weekend to avoid them/her, I think that's okay as a temporary measure. Plan a small indulgence for yourself instead.

This sucks, take care of yourself.
posted by ewok_academy at 11:10 AM on November 2, 2016 [5 favorites]

I'm so sorry. I can't say if this is healthy or not, but the way I dealt with stuff like that after my last relationship was to marvel at how I didn't really know him after all. He was in love with his friend across the country since before we started our 14 year relationship and I never knew. I even helped make his travel arrangements when he would go visit her. I thought I loved him but he never showed me all of himself, so all I could have loved was the part he showed. And that makes him basically a stranger to me now. The man I thought I loved never actually existed and the man who he really was is not someone I want to know.
posted by cabingirl at 11:13 AM on November 2, 2016 [29 favorites]

You have to get back to therapy. If SSRIs were part of your medication, three months is unlikely to make a big difference in your emotional state. Ten months is an exhaustingly long time to grieve so profoundly for an ended relationship; you deserve more outside support to help you find peace.
posted by theraflu at 11:21 AM on November 2, 2016 [2 favorites]

Platitude alert: This too shall pass.

Why it's not a meaningless one in this case:

I've suffered from anxiety and depression since our breakup in January, with therapy and medication from March until June. I thought I was coming out of these black moods, but I feel like I've been thrown back to square one.... I feel like a fresh scar has been ripped open again.

You guys broke up. It hurt terribly, you sought out the help you needed, and you did get better, maybe not perfect, but better. And now something new has happened. And it hurts terribly. But now you have a blueprint of what actually helped you to feel better before. Maybe therapy and meds aren't what you need this time around -- but did your therapy involve any exercises/self reflection? Can you guide yourself through them to see how that feels?

Do I wallow? Do I set this aside and plough on regardless?

You can wallow if that will help you. But whether or not you "set this aside," you're going to be ploughing on regardless because you are still living your life.

For what it's worth, no one should have to deal with the bullshit that this guy has put you through, and I'm sorry that this has unfairly landed on you.
posted by sparklemotion at 11:26 AM on November 2, 2016 [4 favorites]

Definitely therapy and support from those who you love and trust and who love you. But in the meantime, "I don't know who he is anymore.." Does it matter? What matters is knowing you are you. No one has the power to define you or your self worth, not ever.
It may take time and therapy to get to that point. Be gentle with your self and self-compassionate along the way.
posted by jtexman1 at 11:27 AM on November 2, 2016

God, what an asshole. I'm sorry.

Can you look inside yourself and find two things: anger and energy?

I feel like dredging up some real fury and rage at him might be useful for you. I see disgust, resignation and hurt feelings in your post, but I don't see much in the way of righteous fury. It can be helpful, if it's not too much.

As for energy, do you have some for ramping up your social engagements, taking on more online dating even if the results are disastrous, doing some intensive stuff that's just for you? I had a friend a while back who after a breakup declared that he would be accepting all invitations, and as a result got into some funny stuff, met some funny people. I just think if you can start to focus on some other intensive things that are not necessarily emotional in nature, that can be helpful. Classes, outings, clubs, strange hobbies and vacations, big projects.

Maybe the more unusual the better. Imagine yourself going to a party and seeing your friends, they ask you what you've been up to. You can say, "I cleaned my house and went to the movies and then today I baked banana bread, but otherwise trying to stay dry!" and that's fine enough. Or you can say, "oh man, I went to this ecstatic dance event and it was filled with crazy people that I never want to see again and later today I'm taking an archery class. In the meantime at night I'm watching every Japanese film in the Criterion
Collection, have you seen Tokyo Story by Ozu?" And all of the sudden you're talking about weird hobbies and what they are.

I don't know, I just think sometimes that can be helpful? Later on, when you're exhausted, take a break from that, but I think while you're emotionally vulnerable, sometimes it's good to get intensive about stuff other than your feelings.
posted by vunder at 11:31 AM on November 2, 2016 [4 favorites]

This is hitting you hard because you had been working within one story of What Happened and coming to terms with the situation based on that, and now you’ve learned that your story was wrong and it’s taking away all the work you’ve already done.

It is going to take some processing, sure. It will change the feelings you’d had for your ex and you’ll need to work them out in a different way.

But one thing that MIGHT help it go faster is to realize that while this changes your narrative, it doesn’t actually change anything about your future. Any plans you made, dreams you had… no reason they need to change. Imagine you found out something like this about, say, a high school relationship you had. It wouldn’t really affect you at this point because you’re so far past it, right? Once you’ve gotten past the initial WHAM, it could help to frame it that way… it was in the past and irrelevant to what happens next. (Though maybe it can provide you with a better sense of relief that you didn’t stay with such a $#%^!)

(I hear you on the gender unfairness of dating at our ages. But that’s a DIFFERENT frustration; let’s kvetch about that when you’re more past this one.)
posted by metasarah at 11:43 AM on November 2, 2016 [6 favorites]

'He'll find someone straight away.' Because he's too weak to be alone.
posted by bq at 11:57 AM on November 2, 2016 [34 favorites]

I know some couples where one person cheated, and in hindsight it became clear that friends knew it was happening, or might have suspected. In those circumstances, I have never ever thought badly about, nor heard anyone speak badly of, the cheated-on person. Instead, we all think the cheater is trash. So please try to separate that embarrassment from how you feel about this whole situation- embarrassment is not your burden to bear. He (and she, to a lesser - but still significant - extent, since she knew you two were together) are the ones who should be ashamed; whether or not they have the decency to be ashamed may be a different story. But you are the one who was wronged; you do not deserve to feel shame- try to be kind to yourself and let that feeling go.
posted by pseudostrabismus at 12:01 PM on November 2, 2016 [14 favorites]

You've got to walk, to cook and to eat, to sleep, to pay your bills, to wash your clothing. I don't know your money situation, probably you've got to work. So do those things. But other than that, you're off the hook.

You know, I started to write something about some new escape you could hurl yourself into. You could get into an intense yoga practice. You could yodel. You could eat yogurt, and yodel, whilst practicing yoga. You can run as far and as fast as you can, trying to keep one step ahead of the ache that's living in you now.

Or you could just stand still.

"Don't just do something -- stand there!"

Because you can't outrun this grief. What you're in right now, it hurts. Stand in it, let it wash over you, let it wash through you. It's going to do so anyways, so why not just accept it, and stand in it?

I'm *not* saying to not see your therapist again. I'm *not* saying to stay off the medication that helped you deal. I'm saying you have just gotten hit by a bus and you're in shock and awe, I'm saying to allow yourself to grieve as best you're able. Don't fight the tears, they're healing, they're so valuable, they're like diamonds, you'll come out of this thing with your hands filled with diamonds.

And you will come out of this thing. I promise. Not today, nor tomorrow -- this isn't on your schedule, you can't push the river. But you will make it out, carrying your diamonds, and peace in your heart. I promise.
posted by dancestoblue at 12:10 PM on November 2, 2016 [29 favorites]

Lots of good suggestions here, and I might add- concentrate on healthily finding ways to scaffold and promote your good qualities to the end of building your self-worth and esteem. This is wholly dependent on individual basis; maybe, reinforce those good qualities you find in yourself, no matter how small. Narcissistic humans, classically, hurt the most, because to the rest of us, they're exist and thrive beyond conventional empathy and understanding. Maybe he's sick, or maybe not, but if he is, could you find some way to pity him for his fucked-up-ness, his self-entitled-ness?

I am so sorry about this. You didn't deserve this in the least, and you are lovable and wanted. Being single can feel difficult for engaging, self-aware adults who want to have relationships that reflect and generate positive qualities and genuine love.

Maybe take up a new sport or activity, and grow into a new(ish), bigger, and- to yourself- person.

Best wishes to you my dear.
posted by erattacorrige at 12:20 PM on November 2, 2016 [2 favorites]

I dodged this particular bullet at EXACTLY the same age. Happily married soon after, our son is 5 years old now.

I accidentally ate an especially potent pot brownie on the summer solstice and tripped balls all night long, culminating in the hallucination/realization that my ex would literally be the death of me if I kept thinking the way your are now. The next morning I ran into my now husband and saw him in a brand new light. As stated, we married soon after.

My life changing experience was an accident, but I don't see why you can't plan some sort of meaningful adventure like a hiking expedition or similar nature-type experience to "reset" and renew your perception and perspective. Maybe you could learn to scuba dive? Go on a yoga retreat? Do a spa detox. I mean, do you see where I'm coming from? Why waste another second thinking about this absolute bullshit?? Do something radical and enriching! Change your life!

Start with this weekend. Whatever is going on that was going to bring you into contact with your ex, you will now be doing something else. Change your plans and do something awesome this weekend. DO NOT PUT YOURSELF IN PROXIMITY OF YOUR CHEATER EX.

Also, you should make it crystal clear to all of your friends that you know that your ex cheated and that everyone can stop pretending. Also, go ahead and distance yourself from anyone who defends your ex. You don't need to hate your ex, you don't need mutual friends to vilify him, but you do need to uphold honor and honesty above deception. If they think you are wrong for making it known that he cheated, then you don't need them as friends. Don't keep secrets or pretend anymore. It's OK to say you are processing uncovering his dishonesty and that you take back the positive spin you put on your break up. It's OK to say that while you don't plan to hold a grudge, you're never going to be on friendly terms with your ex because you're not a fan of lying. Don't scorch the earth, but go ahead and stand behind healthy boundaries and ethical principles.

And again, make other plans this weekend. Put your wellbeing first. New information, new rules from here on out.
posted by jbenben at 12:34 PM on November 2, 2016 [28 favorites]

Nthing dancestoblue! Fuck yeah you should grieve the shit out of this in the short term.
posted by jbenben at 12:37 PM on November 2, 2016 [1 favorite]

Yep. You are going to have to feel these feelings in order to get past them. You can put that off by many different means (sleep, work, drugs, yoga, running), but the only way to make them actually go away is to feel them. It sucks and it's hard work but it does pay off mightily.
posted by fiercecupcake at 12:42 PM on November 2, 2016 [2 favorites]

Wow, that is rough!

As others have said: allow yourself to be angry and sad and revolted and ... whatever it is you need to feel.

You have *just* learned new, devastating information. You have every right to be upset. That does not mean your therapy and progress have failed in any way. Think of it as cleaning a house. Just because you found an extra (very filthy) room you weren't aware of, does not invalidate all the cleaning you've done so far in the rest of the house. So keep at it.

Your ex is scum. The person you loved was a lie he concocted. That was his choice, his wrong-doing. You need to re-write your definition of him because clearly he is not whom you thought he was.

Take care of yourself!
posted by Neekee at 1:01 PM on November 2, 2016 [6 favorites]

I'd been very positive and complimentary about him in general after the breakup.

Please don't feel bad about this. It is an amazing way to be (even if it was based on incomplete information). It shows that you are kind and respectful and mature; the opposite of him. You come out of this looking like an incomparably better person.

It's like being socked in the stomach to realise the person you loved never really existed. But it can be liberating too. Each time your mind wanders back to fantasising about the good things about him, you can now think 'huh... the person I'm missing right now isn't real. I don't want them back, I can't have them back, because they don't exist'.

I'm so sorry this breakup had a sting in the tail. But you'll get through this bit too.
posted by wreckofthehesperus at 1:31 PM on November 2, 2016 [17 favorites]

There's lots of good advice here. Nthing that you continue to work through your grief, one day at a time, rather than seek void-fillers to stuff it down. It's not even just a breakup but more like a death of both the dream and the person you thought you knew.

In my 20s I was similarly devastated by a cheating ex -- including even the musical element with whom he had the 2nd concurrent relationship with! I felt soooooo similarly as you're describing now, with what felt like months sunk into 'useless' grieving. Part of coping was letting my grief have its priority, and trusting that eventually this would pass. I consciously chose to treat the loss of the relationship like a death. If I only felt like laying in bed and crying, then I gave myself permission to do so. When I felt well enough to, I gently eased into exercising again topped off with a very meaningful reward for getting out of bed to exercise (in my case, it was permission to have a hot fudge sundae after every bike ride -- calories be damned, since I had already dropped a substantial amount of weight from not eating during the initial shock/grieving). I gave myself lots of credit just for getting up and facing the world again.

Something else that helped me to start re-building was realizing I could take back and re-appropriate the dream. Being with my ex was amazing because the relationship had given me the sense of security I'd been needing to have more courage to articulate my actual goals for myself. In being with my ex, I'd come to believe these goals were only possible because he was in my life. As a mental exercise I found it very worthwhile to write out what those dreams for self-realization were, so I could better understand what it was I was looking for in moving forward. That way, the loss didn't have to be nearly as absolute as I initially believed. I didn't have to let go of that part of myself that had become further developed while in the relationship; if I could successfully separate it from him, I could take it with me.

Do stay no-contact. In spite of his conventional good looks, do not under-estimate how low his self-esteem might actually be. Chances are he will come sniffing around for your attention whenever the excitement of his new squeeze doesn't give him the same hit anymore, because it was actually the adrenaline-rush of knowing he was with two women that was rewarding vs. the 'amazing' qualities of his new partner. It's a way of stuffing his own inner voids, you know? He wasn't the person you thought you knew, and he isn't someone capable of loving another person whole-heartedly because that is who he has shown himself to be. Eventually the problems he ran away from in being with two people at the same time will catch up to him again. Ideally by then you will feel stronger in seeing his crap behavior for what it really is (lies, lies, and more lies) rather than be fooled into believing what he has to offer you is anything sincere. You can become stronger in getting through this, and you can be happy again. Just be patient with yourself, let it process, and don't fret about pushing that river. You're doing really well prioritizing your self-care already. Keep it up. You will get through.
posted by human ecologist at 2:15 PM on November 2, 2016 [12 favorites]

It sounds like you don't know for sure whether he got together with her before or after your relationship ended, but this is something that you put together based on the information that you do have. Whether he cheated emotionally or physically or not, it sounds like he didn't behave honourably.

This is going to be hard, but I recommend that you stop trying to work it out. Don't spend time thinking about all the clues. Don't get sucked into that. Because when it comes down to it, it doesn't matter. All you'd end up doing is poisoning yourself further with his toxicity.

When you have a thought about him and his new relationship, imagine it as a bubble and let it float away.

Maybe tell him that you are aware of his relationship and then cut that jerk out of your life.

And file what your mother said under "not helpful". The goal when a relationship ends should not be to get into a new relationship straight away. As if being single is so bad that any relationship will do.

Also, attractiveness of the parties involved has little to do with cheating. Please don't use this to further put yourself down.
posted by kinddieserzeit at 2:27 PM on November 2, 2016

Oops, reread and it seems like it is quite clear that they were together before you broke up.

Regardless, I still recommend trying not to dwell on the thoughts.

My ex cheated on me with at least one person, but very likely more. When I broke up with him he tried to hurt me by saying there were many more.

It was hard, but I tried not to let those thoughts come into it because all it would do was torture me.

Your ex is 44? He's old enough to know that cheating is wrong, but not emotionally mature enough to stop himself from cheating.

You definitely dodged a bullet.
posted by kinddieserzeit at 2:36 PM on November 2, 2016 [1 favorite]

Don't blame yourself. I see a little of that in your #7, but it's absolutely not your fault that you chose to give him a chance and trusted him.
posted by J. Wilson at 3:04 PM on November 2, 2016

You've had great advice so far. I have been in your position. Here is some cold comfort: he is going to cheat on her.

He cheated on the previous girl. He cheated on you. He'll cheat on her. He's a cheater. It's got nothing to do with conventional attractiveness or whether she is talented or beautiful (but btw your mom sounds like she'd be great fun at parties, does she always casually make you feel worse about tough stuff?). It's not about you, or her, or the previous women. It's about him. He's a cheater. Mine cheated again. And again. The woman he cheated on me with has kids with him, and puts up with his cheating so her kids can have a daddy. So that's her prize I guess? I feel SO INCREDIBLY LUCKY that she "won" him and not me.

I don't think there is a fast forward on the feels. They are hard and take time. But please be reassured that it wasn't about you.
posted by intergalacticvelvet at 3:11 PM on November 2, 2016 [16 favorites]

Im so sorry this happened to you. Please dont feel badly or feel embarrassed that you were fooled by this jerk. It could happen to any of us, and does, sadly, all too often. You are a good person, and believe me, other people see that and value that. If Ive learned anything in this life, its that Karma always, always catches up with everyone. YOU dont have to worry, but HE is gonna get a serious smack down one of these days.
posted by WalkerWestridge at 4:12 PM on November 2, 2016

I am a 37-year-old woman and not conventionally good looking. He is 44 and conventionally good looking.

When we split up my mother said, 'He'll find someone straight away.'

Your mother is not the friend you need right now. Please find other people to support you through this one.
posted by blue suede stockings at 5:38 PM on November 2, 2016 [8 favorites]

Re AugustWest's comment: I don't think your friend did you any favor by telling you btw. There are other ways to say "forget about the bum".

I completely disagree and just want to say so in case it makes a difference. You're having such a hard time right now, you don't need an extra angle to be upset about. I've been in this situation, as the friend who knows, and it is incredibly difficult to decide what to do. Some people would want their friends to tell, some don't, some think they do until it happens to them etc etc. Your friend made a brave decision and you took it as a kindness (I would too, I am in camp Would Want to Know). the other friends who didn't tell you aren't horrible people, they are likely deeply conflicted and don't know what is best. Everyone is just doing what they can be okay with.

Re 2) Seeing him this weekend. Ugh. I too am in a situation where I will soon be seeing someone I'm not sure I'm ready to see yet, and probably several times between now and end of the year. I have thought through all the different ways I can handle this and have decided that if I cannot avoid him, I'm going to smile from across the room but stay away from him. If it's a closer encounter than that, at most I will say hello but keep moving, not stop for any kind of chit chat. I will leave the room if necessary. Any distress is going to be held in close until i am out of there. I'm going to do this every time I see him until i feel like I am better enough that a disappointing contact isnt going to unravel me again. So not there yet. I will probably feel like I'm going to have a heart attack on approach, and cry when I get home. I am also going to make sure I look amazing.

Self care. Time. Journalling. Ice cream/wine/chocolate.
Hugs from an internet stranger.
posted by stellathon at 6:58 PM on November 2, 2016 [1 favorite]

You should really pat yourself on the back for the way you've handled the breakup so far and you should be very proud that you've taken the high road and maintained a very high standard under unpleasant circumstances. And I can promise you that your social circle has noticed, because I certainly would.

That's a pretty big positive in a really shitty situation, no matter what you knew or when you knew it. If I were you, I would keep working on doing that and being proud of it. Real class shines through, and it's pretty obvious here who has it and who doesn't.
posted by raisingsand at 8:30 AM on November 3, 2016 [2 favorites]

"Real class"! Thanks for giving me a smile, raising sand, and thanks to everyone for all the awesome answers. Such kindness in your words, I'm truly touched.

Update: I finally ran into my ex this evening at an event thrown by mutual friends. I was kind of expecting it and was careful to prepare myself with lots of positivity beforehand.

Of course, I saw him immediately, even before I got into the venue. I was waiting in line and he was behind me, I just turned and said hi. He complimented my coat and I said something non-committal before carrying on about my business.

Later at the event, my friend had left so I was sitting on my own on one side of the super dark venue, appreciating the last but one act. The lights went up and I realised that he and his new girlfriend were sitting not three metres away, facing away from the stage and towards me. She was stroking his stomach and laughingly whispering in his ear and that fuck, that unbelievable asshole, was looking dead at me and grinning. Gloating, I think might be the word. I think I half smiled back, in shock and confusion, but I packed up my stuff and got the hell out. In the toilets I debated with myself as to whether to grit my teeth and stay for the last act, giving them a wide berth, but the need for sanctuary got the better of me and I came home instead.

I'm furious and sad and in absolute fucking disbelief at his pathetic, immature, spiteful actions. I think he might actually hate me. It's too late to process with a friend, so I came here to release this spiel and read your wonderful words again. I hope that's ok, mods.

Bonuses: I was aware of his presence on occasion through the night, but generally was having a chill time with other people. I had no desire to chat with him. Just the last bit messed me up!

Thank you so much, y'all!
posted by doornoise at 4:47 PM on November 18, 2016 [1 favorite]

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