Some liken breaking up with a borderline to withdrawing from heroin. And while I’ve never dabbled in any sort of drug besides the juice, it was one of the most painful, yet strengthening breakups I’ve ever had.
The dates were somewhat fun, as long as you planned and paid for everything. The sex was bombtastic at first, but you quickly realized that your orgasm was no longer your own (use your imagination). If there was no continuance of drama and chaos a few months in, something was apparently wrong with you, because all of sudden he felt safe ant that just couldn’t be. He gas lit you until…well…you were no longer you. You became a self-doubter.
I ended things the day after he missed my college graduation after he offered the excuse, “It’s too early for me,” forgetting the fact that Snapchat existed and I could see the party he was having instead. I ended things because he was a pathological liar, a drug dealer, and a cheater, but hey…what the hell else is new? I ended things because I grew tired of being with someone who was going to hinder me from being the best me I could be. While I didn’t savor spending an entire week on a sofa, eating mint chocolate chip ice cream (well maybe I did) and farting up a storm in efforts to cope with the effects of BPD relationship withdrawal, I made progress. I managed to build myself back up, ready to begin my career. And that’s when I got my high again.
“Well I don’t love you. I only said that to see if it changed the way I felt about you.” This was what my ex-boyfriend told me on his steps the night he decided it was time to end things. Yes, we broke up in person (none of that new age, digital bullshit). Mind you, I had already put him out of his “misery” two weeks prior because I had enough (see above). But of course, it was not he who could be broken up with. Oh no. In order to keep his inner narrative of abandonment going the way it was supposed to, he needed to reel me back in, make things all hunky dory once more (barely), and press a Redo button with him at the reigns. But what was revealed to me that night was the shell of someone so empty, so abused, so hurt and overwhelmed. What I witnessed, was someone who couldn’t handle seeing their significant other succeeding at life, scoring an engineering job in the Midwest, and leaving for all things that would inevitably be much better.
You ask yourself how you could continue to love someone so damaged. Someone you thought you wanted, but was surely too good to be true. He was the one people knew as a nasty slut and drug dealer, but I let him off again because I chose to be blind and like/love unconditionally. He was the one I got too close to, the one that had no choice but to leave me for doing so, as he had to save himself from perceived abandonment.
You’re forced to take a look at yourself from a view so far from who you actually are. All the while, you make friends with stomach ulcers, dangerous weight loss, Jack, Henny, and Jameson (sorry Mike). You’re forced to love yourself, as you go months with no contact, as you try to date to date again, but have been so ravaged by losing your heroin that it’s damn near impossible. You’re forced to lock your room door and cry until you’ve made your own waterbed. And when you have finally decided to come out, you’re forced to be surrounded by people who really care for you: your handful of close friends, your parents, and whoever the hell else allowed you to get your life back.
When I did move to Michigan, when I did start the serious leg of my career, the “everything’s going to be okay,” speech that everyone had given me began to manifest itself in success. And slowly, thoughts of an ex who was absolutely no good for me began to fade. Slowly, I gained back the poundage I lost. Slowly, I became a version of me that knew that I’d only dabble in the good things life had to offer. Because simply put, there was (is) so much better.