I love me some Neal Sekada. He killed it with that song. And why does it make you want to dance? I mean it’s such a happy tune, to be a song about being sad. But I want to talk to you about breaking up, for real. Because, to be honest. It sucks.
Now , most people have experienced a break up in their lives once you hit adulthood. Whether it is a boyfriend/girlfriend/partner/spouse – or all the above. And goodness, its hard. And if you still love the person -and are the “dumpee” it hurts. You might feel abandoned, hurt, betrayed, scared, you name it. You might even feel victimized.
It also hurts when you are the one who has to make the break-up happen. Maybe you still love the person, but it’s unhealthy (yes – that can happen). Maybe you are afraid of being alone. Maybe you are afraid that you will never be loved by anyone else. Maybe you don’ t want to upset family members. Maybe you are afraid of what other people will think. And really, let’s be honest. It’s plain hard. There is going to be things that have to happen. Moving. Crying. Court papers, maybe.
I wrote about this part because I have been on both sides of the coin. I have been dumped. And I have dumped. All that – is from personal experience. By the time I had hit my mid-30’s, I figured I understood all the feelings around break- ups… Until the unthinkable happened. Two times, in two years. What is the chance of that!?
It was a friendship breakup. I got broken up with by two of my best female friends. Almost a year apart to the day. And ladies, if you are reading this – well, now ya know how it affected me. The first one, broke up with me when I split with an ex. She was on his side. But here is the thing – there wasn’t a side. I understand that I met her through him, and she had loyalty to him. We had also at this point been close for 5 years. That’s a lot of time. Girls nights. Dinners. Laughing by the pool. Taking care of each other’s kids. I had told her a lot about myself, and I didn’t normally do that. I really felt like we were close – like super close.
And then it happened, I got the text. Now, I laugh about it time and again. And say “I got broken up with via text message.” But to be honest, it literally broke my heart. It broke my heart like any other break-up would. This was someone I loved, cared about, and had allowed into my life – and I got a text. Not a phone call. Not a lunch. A text. And a text that ended with, “I don’t need you to reply.” Like, wow. I sat there and stared at my phone. I was shook. She told me that she was hurt that I hadn’t told her our marriage issues. She told me that she felt like I wasn’t there for her during a hard time of her life. And I am not gonna lie. I sat there – stunned. Completely and totally stunned.
You see, in my mind – I had told her more than anyone. I had told her I had marriage issues. That I was struggling. She told me about a YouTube therapist that she had seen, and raved about it. In all fairness, I checked it out. And yes, they were talented. But in that moment I realized, she had never heard my issues. My marital issues needed a lot more than a YouTube therapist. Not that I hadn’t told her. She hadn’t heard it. Let that sink in. I am not blaming her and I am not blaming me. It just wasn’t good communication. That being said, she has text me a couple of times over the past year or so, letting me know one thing or another. It will never be the same, though.
Next, was a friend of mine that I was even closer to. We used to talk on the phone for hours. Go to Disney together. IT WAS GREAT! I loved this girl. She was with me through a job transition, a split, and a ton of other things. I was with her through moves, her struggles, and and helped like a best friend should. Now – I am not going to get into all that she went through – that’s her story, not mine. But trust me when I say, It was a lot. She trusted me with a lot. As I did her. That being said, she ended up going through a whole whole whole lot – and then *poof*! She vanished. Like vanished. I called. She didn’t answer. About a month after she semi-vanished, she called me. I was so pumped to hear from her. She apologized for being distant. She told me that she had gotten a new job, and was working on a lot of personal things, but that she loved me. I told her I understood, and if she needed anything – I would be there.
And I haven’t heard from her since.
I mean, maybe she is still working on stuff? Probably. But, no matter what – I got dumped.
So why am I writing this? I am telling you – Sister, you aren’t alone. If you have experienced a best friend break-up – it’s one of the worst feelings out there. It can seem/and honestly is – worse than a romantic break-up. I mean let’s be honest, if you are a good friend, you have put in hours of attention, respect, work, and love. These relationships are intimate – and personal! Think of what you share with a best friend! Here is another thing I realized in the second one, she called me crying all the time. Wanting help and advice. Sometimes filled with rage and jealousy. It all just depended on the day. I, in-turn, became over invested in her issues. I took them on personally. That wasn’t good for me, or for my relationships.
In some situations, in the romantic realm, we think we might can work it out. It might even be stronger. But when you have that ‘best friend’ relationship – and it’s pummeled and broken up with… Yeah. It is never going to be the same. And when you felt like the relationship was great – (I mean, best friends after all)- it can’t come back stronger. The first break-up though, the one I got the text from- I was able to handle that better. Why, you ask? Was she not as close? I think it all boiled down to the fact that at least I knew I was being broken up with and why. Like when you are dating someone, there is a break-up. Like, “it’s over, and I want my stuff back.” Or , “Let’s still be friends..” Whatever. You communicate it. She communicated it very one-sided. But still. She communicated it. I knew.
The second one, I had ‘no terms of the break-up’, for lack of better explanation. Like, are we ever going to speak again? What do I do if I see you in public? Do your kids know what happened? – I was sad. So sad. And shed quite a few tears over those break-ups. When you are in a romantic relationship – you are shocked when it’s over and you experience days, maybe even weeks of heartbreak and sadness. But this? I wasn’t ready, and I definitely didn’t see it coming. And who do you tell? Who do you talk it through with? Well guess what – not them, they aren’t there. So, that being said – you can also feel totally alone. The person that you are used to telling when you are upset – gone.
Now that time has rolled on by, I still miss them both. I have also realized a few things about me. And learned a lot. I am a much better judge of character than I used to be. Much better. I am also much more cautious, as to who I let it. And that’s okay! I am not saying that I am some ice queen who lets no one in – I am just able to view, adjust, give, and receive in a manner that is comfortable for me. In both of the above relationships – I gave a whole lot more than I received. In time, effort, prayer, worry, thought, you name it. Not only can I see it now, but even people on the outside of our relationships saw it. And I am not saying that they are needy, attention sucking, self serving women. They aren’t. But for whatever reason, it wasn’t good. Maybe they saw it and I couldn’t.
No matter the case, leaving a toxic relationship is hard. Recognizing the toxicity of said relationship, that too, is hard. Looking back, and seeing how far you have come, what you have learned, and how your life has been shaped in a positive way, that’s some mindful work there. Sis, if you are hurting, I am so sorry. If you have went through this, I am sorry. It does get better. Time helps. I know it’s crap to hear, but it does. And you wanna know who the real heroes are? My other friends that I slowly talked to about it. It has made those relationships stronger. I know what I need to receive in a friendship, and I know what my friends need to give. It sounds calculating – but it isn’t. Its full of love, peace, give and take. I can also easily vocalize when I am unhappy or hurt by a friend. I have found my own opinions that I can easily vocalize and express. They, in turn, listen in love. I also know what I need to give them to make them feel loved and valued. I love doing that, also. I love them!
So what now? You might be sitting there saying, Kristie – I am in the middle of this and it sucks. What do I do now!?! Well, first. Let yourself mourn. Then, accept it. That’s the best advice I can give. The next time you feel sad or alone, pick up the phone, and call someone. Nurture your new friendships. Maybe, you too, will realize that this was the best thing after all.
Love Fully. Live Fully. Shine On. Sat nam.