To The Boys Who Cheat

Match Point /
Match Point /
Especially to the boy who cheated on me.

It’s hard to even hear your name. It sends my stomach spinning and blood straight into my face, flushing my cheeks. My ears get hot and all there is to do is stare at the concrete with my hands on top of them, waiting for my breathing to ease and my heart to stop pumping out of my chest. Isn’t it bizarre and also incredibly sad that something as simple as a name can force such a guttural reaction that you have no control over? Isn’t it even sadder that yours was a name that used to make my soul sing and now makes me want to run in the opposite direction? Isn’t it just sad?

It breaks my heart to know there are other girls who have been stabbed in the back the same way I was by you. It makes me infuriated, fists balled and white-knuckled to know there are other boys, not men but pathetic, little boys out there who think this kind of behavior is excusable. It’s a kind of heartbreak that never fully heals. It only stops feeling visceral, open, exposed, and bleeding after an unpredictable amount of time. But regardless of the dissipating freshness of the pain, the hurt lingers like a bruise that may not be visible but is still painful to the touch.

What were you thinking? Were you just so impulsive and immature that this seemed like something you could get away with? How were you able to forgive yourself?

When you have nightmares, are the sounds of me sobbing, grasping for answers and asking “How could you?” haunting you in the back of your mind?

I hope so.

The person you are today is completely unrecognizable. Maybe saying that you’ve changed and shifted that much is just my way of dealing with and understanding your betrayal. It sounds like I’m making excuses but that isn’t it; I’m trying to make sense of it. I am trying to figure out where the person went who once held me close and said “I’ll always be here” because that “always” was apparently an empty promise.

“The person I loved would never have hurt me like that.”

“It’s almost like he died because I recognize no part of who he is now.”

“I never saw it coming.”

I never saw it coming.

That’s probably what stings the most, how unexpected it is. You did the one thing, the one action that completely invalidated our entire relationship. Any other injustice could maybe have been explained but the act of going behind my back and being with someone when you were only supposed to be with me was like taking everything we cherished and treasured and just pissing on it.

Cheating on someone is the ultimate way of saying: Here’s how little I care about you. Here’s how nonexistent your feelings are to me. Here’s how little you matter.

People want to know why it’s so easy to be guns blazing, no holding back, fists raised livid with the other woman while the guy — the boyfriend — seemingly get this free pass. But make no mistake, I hold you equally responsible. You didn’t have to dive into her. You could have walked away and you didn’t. You could have told me it wasn’t working for you and left; able to hold your head high. But instead you chose the most insulting, degrading thing you could do. So yes, I’m absolutely angry with you too.

But I don’t have memories with her. I don’t have pictures I couldn’t bear deleting of her sleeping with my dog. I can’t remember 3AM conversations about tattoo meanings, pretending to swing dance in kitchens, talking about Peru and adventures I’d love to take involving her even years later. I wasn’t in love with her. I seem angrier with her because this anger with her stems from fire and with you it still brings tears to my eyes.

You are a heartbreaker. And not in the cheeky, troublemaker, Rebel Without a Cause kind of way. You broke someone’s heart to the point where they weren’t sure it could ever be pieced back together. I didn’t know who I was for a really long time after what you did. Are you proud of that?

Are you proud of what you did? Are you proud of who you are?

When I look back on this, the only thing I’m thankful for is that she is stuck with you, not me. The two of you deserve each other. You both are so selfish, so immature, and so ridiculously inconsiderate of other people. You deserve to cling to one another and stay away from anyone that happens to have the shred of decency you’re apparently lacking. You two can be terrible people together and leave the rest of us alone. I’m happy I can say that I would never even be able to fathom or consider doing what you did. That even the thought of participating in something that could potentially hurt someone the way I was hurt makes me sick. You can’t say that. You can never say that.

The only thing that heals wounds in general, especially wounds of this magnitude, is time. And in time, you’ll be forgiven. You’ll be forgiven, mostly forgotten, and you’ll only exist in pieces like the remnants of a bad dream or a scar that hasn’t totally faded.

But I’ll haunt you for the rest of your life. Thought Catalog Logo Mark


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