Your hurt her, you hurt me. It’s one of the most basic truths. Even if I didn’t like you, even if I were glad that you two are over (which, by the way, isn’t true), it still hurts. In some ways, having a guy break my heart can’t compare to the pain I feel when someone breaks hers. I am not saying it’s healthy, but I can run from my own heartache. I can drown it in booze or drugs or by getting under someone new. But I can’t escape my best friend’s broken heart.
I am not being narcissistic; I swear I am not. But seeing her crumble…it’s a piercing pain to my heart that I can hardly bare. My cheerful best friend, the girl who always has a smile for everyone and even her most snarky comments are filled with love…that girl is a shell, one I barely recognize. I hug her tightly every opportunity I get because I am afraid that without my arms wrapped around her, she might just fall apart into the million pieces her heart has been shattered into.
A few nights ago we went out to a club with some friends: girls’ night. We had fun, we really did. The DJ was playing the songs we’ve been singing along to all summer, the drinks were icy and strong, the crowd in a mood to party. I saw her smile and it seemed genuine. After all these years, I’m certain I can tell when she is faking it and when it’s real.
And then you texted her. Something about missing her and just wanting to say hello and you knew you should be texting her but you were drunk and couldn’t help yourself. I don’t want to be mad at you; I’ve sent texts like that. But you didn’t see her face when she read those messages.
If you had, it would have broken you too. I know you love her, that’s why I am saying this. I wish I could paint you as the bad guy because it would make this so much easier, but you’re not. You were drunk and probably missing her, and like I said, I have texted guys even when I shouldn’t have. But, still, you should have seen her face.
She spent the rest of the night in a corner, trying not to cry while texting you. And, yes, you were drunk and she was too and both of you meant the words you said even though you knew they were arrows to the heart. But my point still stands: you should have seen her face, you should have resisted. Nothing good ever comes from those wasted late night texts to an ex.
I don’t hate you; I can’t. If things were different, maybe we could have been friends. You’re a cool guy, one of the good ones, even. You guys just weren’t right for each other and she knows it, even if right now she can’t admit it. And clearly you know it too, it’s why you broke up with her, isn’t it? She keeps saying that you must have cheated on her or fallen in love with some other girl, but I don’t think so. You’re not one to lie; actually, you’re a pretty bad liar. I learned that the time we all played poker together.
You broke my best friend’s heart and her pain is piercing mine. But I am also thankful for you. I always suspected you guys wouldn’t end up together: call it a gut feeling or whatever. Throughout the time you guys had together, she changed in so many ways. Not for you, but because of you. You were able to bring out things in her that no-one else ever had. I saw her grow up and love and laugh and try random things that not even I ever managed to convince her to do. With you, being out of her comfort zone was like second nature to her. I thank you for that. I thank you for the best friend I have now. The best friend I had before you, she was great. This girl? She’s amazing. And it’s not like it took any relationship or any guy to do that; it took you. It took how she felt about you.
I know you loved her, probably still do. My intention isn’t to inflict further pain on you nor to boost your ego about the part you’ve played in her life. I guess I just wanted you to know these things and also to say goodbye.
We’ve hung out a lot. Never one-on-one, but you’ve probably heard me complain about men more than most of my friends have and we’ve had some fun nights and drunken conversations about everything and nothing. I wouldn’t say we were friends exactly, but you were my best friend’s boyfriend so you were almost as embedded in my life as in hers.
I’ll miss you, I will. It will be weird not constantly seeing you around or hearing about you. Now I need to get used to all the details and remember everything about whoever is next. And I hope he will be great. And I hope that your next girlfriend will be lovely too and that her best friend will be less of a bitch than I was (you have to admit it; I certainly had my moments in the very beginning. What can I say? I’m very protective).
I hope you’ll be happy. Because even though she is not at all right now, I know she will be. And I hope I’ll see you again someday and we can reminisce about the good old days and you’ll ask me how she is doing and I’ll tell you how happy she is and you’ll smile, truly smile, and say “Good, she deserves it.” And you do too, you know.
It’s been a hell of a ride; even from the backseat that was my position throughout it all.
Your ex’s best friend