To The People Who Haunt Us After They Should Be Gone


You are the type of person who leaves more questions than answers behind you.

You are the type of person who demands attention, demands a presence. You insist on being noticed even when you are the last person we want to see.

You are the type of person who can’t bear to be second best, to be replaced.

So you force your way in, you force our hand.

You claw your way in through social media, friends of friends, or even by contacting us under calculated methods to make sure that you are always a presence somewhere, some way. You refuse to be forgotten, refuse to be put on a shelf labeled “memories” and instead, whine incessantly to be put somewhere that instead reads “always”.

You are the person who is the nagging voice in our ear, the breath on our neck we’re trying to think nothing of, the person we are so arduously trying to leave behind, but who keeps popping up no matter what we do.

We know that we’re supposed to ignore you, supposed to forget about you, supposed to say nothing instead of something because silence holds more power. So why are you making it so difficult for someone to move on?

Because honestly? It’s really fucking unfair.

Why are you lingering in the shadows where we can only catch glimpses of you? Why are you still appearing in our timelines, ‘liking’ photos, demanding that we do not forget you? Why are you so carefully and craftily making sure that we can’t move on after you removed yourself from our immediate life?

You LEFT. You said goodbye. You ended things.

You are the one who chose to put a period at the end of the sentence, so you should stick to that decision. There is no delete space in life, no backspace, no edit undo. When you finish something, you need to own that decision, not hang out in the margins pretending that by being there you’re doing us some sort of favor.

Because you aren’t.

The thing about breaking up, leaving, parting ways, is that one person is ultimately okay while the other needs to learn HOW to be. And by lingering, by haunting us, you are making that journey to being okay that so much more difficult.

And again, honestly? It seems like it’s on purpose.

But you know what?

That’s not our fault.

It’s not our job anymore to make you feel comfortable, to make you happy. It’s not our job to reinforce your decision for you. It’s not our job to make you feel okay about something you so clearly feel on the fence about.

You need to own your decisions, your choices.

You need to just be gone.

When you choose to leave, when you choose to say “this is it”, you need to let the proverbial door close behind you and promise to not fiddle with the lock. Because when you do not let it close, do not let it be done, you are doing nothing but hurting someone else.

That’s right. You’re doing nothing but picking at a wound that is not yours, striking a nerve that doesn’t belong to you, and ultimately refusing to let someone else heal.

And it’s not only unfair, it’s cruel.

So turn your back, walk away, and do not turn back around. Own your choices, own your absence.

Stop relentlessly haunting people who are not reaching out, not summoning you, not looking for you in corners or in the spaces between an ellipsis where there once was a period.

End things. And for real this time.

Because you also will never heal if you keep lingering in places where you don’t belong. Thought Catalog Logo Mark


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