Ex-Boyfriends Of The World: Get Out Of My Internet

Breaking up is hard. You divide up your friends. You don’t go to places that belonged to the “us” you no longer are. You don’t go to his places. You only go to the places that are yours, only yours, that were yours before him. Breaking up was probably still hard before the Internet, but it seems to me it’s gotten worse.

In the olden days of, I guess the 80s, you just had to avoid the person until you’d eaten your ice cream, gotten on the treadmill, put cucumbers on your eyes to hide the puffiness from crying, and you were ready to make him regret the leaving. Just stay home and unplug the phone. Phones go everywhere now. The Internet goes everywhere. It’s a world wide web. You stay home and the world is still with you.

The Internet is big. Getting lost should be the easiest thing in the world. It should be a crowded street, filled with strangers calling themselves SpyGirl989 and TooSexxy4U.

The Internet means you can go anywhere, be anybody. You can hide. Not that anybody does. Not that anybody would want to. We want to be seen. We plaster ourselves onto Facebook pages, twitter accounts, blogs we started, blogs that will have us there for a day. I deactivate my Facebook account for at least a week when heartbroken. It’s a rule.

Looking at perfect pictures of a face you woke up to yesterday but not today, tomorrow, ever again, is counterproductive to the healing process, and nobody wants the endless stream of sad girl status updates and repeated video posts of Love is a Battlefield. There is no dignity in getting dumped. It’s no use fooling yourself into believing you have self control. If 250 pictures of him are available: you will look at all of them. Remove temptation.

I’m less than 24 hours into the ritual. Twenty-five years is plenty of time to learn the fastest way to normal life after breaking up. I am the Man Vs. Wild of 21st century romance. I deactivated Facebook. I’m invisible on GChat. The condom wrappers are in the dumpster out back, not in the wastebasket by the bed. The pizza is ordered. There isn’t enough alcohol. I go the places that are mine only mine, forgetting that somewhere along the way they became ours.

On my favorite blog today: The boy who broke up with me yesterday. These things happen, I guess. People who have broken up run into each other — online and off now. I’ve had my heart broken before, and worse. He wants to live his life. It will be better without me in it. He will be published without me in it. He will wake up without me and go to bed without me, and never remember that when I got back into bed each morning holding a cup of coffee, that he would respond to the movement of the mattress, rolling to me, curling around me, pressing his forehead into my hip, kissing the hem of my underwear and staying asleep. He will never know that he loved me in the moments when he wasn’t thinking too hard. He will only know that he is happiest on the Internet, seeing and being seen.

The Internet is a big place, but it works the same as the world outside of it. All the same people go all the same places. Everybody knows everybody. I need to start unplugging the wifi. I need to find another coffee shop where all the boys look almost just the same as the one I’m avoiding. I need a new place — online and off — that’s mine, all mine. TC mark

image – Facebook

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  • http://twitter.com/geology_rocks Haley F

    *hug*

  • http://twitter.com/shoshkabob Shosh

    Honestly, it’s kind of a good thing; that way you face it and make seeing him around a part of your life instead of running away from it and still being sore when you run into him a year later.

  • Melissa

    Ah, this one speaks to me. I’m 2 months in after being dumped and I think the worst possible thing I’ve had to deal with is the music that we both enjoyed. So far, I’ve only been listening to music that I liked before him and music he didn’t care for. Soon enough I’ll go back to it all but right now,
    I’m just healing. Damn you, Internet.

  • http://twitter.com/jessicapippin Jessica Pippin

    The internet makes everything so much worse. I’ve struggled with this as well. You try to ignore their activity on Facebook, Twitter, etc. Mutual friends cause problems. There’s no way to get away from it sometimes. But I suppose it can help you face the issue. Doesn’t make it any easier, though. 

    • Anonymous

      It’s always tough when you’re friends with the same people in real life (not that Facebook is fake life, but you know what I mean). It’s like.. do I hang out with the mutual friends? Or ditch them? Either way you feel like shit and there’s no happy outcome until you’re fully over that person.

  • Guest

    that same week he dumps you and you go to your facebook page and you see he has cancelled the relationship that has been on listed on your facebook for 3 years and you’re like, youuuuu asshole.  

    • Anonymous

      It’s like the burn of all burns.

  • Sophia

    The weird meta thing is that this article is posted on the internet so maybe he’ll read it, whoa

    • http://twitter.com/georgiawisdom Georgia

      I’m pretty sure that my most recent ex-boyfriend has read all my Thought Catalog essays. He probably thinks I’m insane now.

  • http://twitter.com/georgiawisdom Georgia

    I still can’t bring myself to read my favourite movie blog /film, because it was one of my ex-boyfriend’s favourites and I have this weird fear of “seeing him” there.

  • Caro

    beautiful. 

  • guest

    so true.

  • Shatha H.

    The Internet is a big place, but it works the same as the world outside of it…TRUE

  • http://www.wherehopelives.blogspot.com/ Shreya

    I wish it were easier. Or better. Or some way to help. But I’m yet to figure it out myself.
    Good luck.
    I hope it gets easier.

  • Anonymous

    I’m going through the same exact thing. My stomach cringes everytime I log on to Facebook and see my ex. We’ve deleted each other off of our pages before, but would still venture to see the latest profile picture and who they added as a friend. It’s sickening. Technology is great in so many aspects, but it never lets you get away.

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