You haven’t heard from him in weeks, then suddenly out of the blue he texts you, ”Hope you’re well. What are your plans for tonight?” Actually, you have plenty. You’ve been planning to get some extra work done, do the laundry, meet up with girlfriends for drinks, and call your mother.
But suddenly you don’t have any, because HE just texted. In matter of seconds you’re all free, dropping everyone and everything without even thinking. Fifteen frantic minutes later you’ve fixed your make-up, changed your clothes, and are already out of the door, exited as a four-year old ready for her first time to Disneyland.
Oh girl, you’re in so much trouble.
We’ve all been there, in that one-way relationship where the guy gets to set the agenda, where he’s the one who’s always in the driver’s seat. We might not even realize because we’re so focused on what’s being offered to us at the moment (time with him, sex, attention), that we wouldn’t be able to see what was right in front of us even if we tried.
All you want is to be his sweetheart. All you want is to sleep with him, sleep next to him, wake up with him in the morning. You want him to cuddle you, spoon you, tell you how beautiful you are. You’ve already planned how and when you’re going to take him out for breakfast at your local coffee shop the next morning, but when morning comes and you realize all he wants is to get you out of the door, you blame (and accept) his busy schedule and act as the oh so very understanding one, because you are the one who doesn’t ask for his time or commitment. You’re being the chill girl that plays his game, swallowing your hurt and pride as you leave, carefully not to show any emotion. You’re holding your head up high, crying inside while kissing him goodbye with a smile, wondering silently when you’ll see him next, if at all.
Later, when it feels like your heart has been ripped out of your chest from yet another “can’t see you” text, you excuse his behavior to your girlfriends, saying he’s just so busy at work right now. You’ll tell yourself and everyone else who cares to listen that he just might be worth waiting for anyway and that you’re sure he’ll come around at some point, just as soon as he realizes you’ve been The One all along.
It doesn’t matter how many times he told you he’s “not ready for commitment right now” or that he’s “not boyfriend material,” offering some half-hearted, half-believable excuse on why this is so, because you’re not ready to listen anyway. It doesn’t matter what he says, because there’s no way in hell you’re ready to accept that you’re just someone he passes time with, a placeholder for someone else, or just someone keeping him warm at night after his last breakup or divorce.
You’ve treated him as your priority for months, while you’re just his option when there’s no one else around. Deep down you know he doesn’t really make time for you. You’re just the entertainment in-between shows, while you so desperately want to be the headline. He never commits to any plans with you, he always needs to “check and revert,” giving you notice the last minute, wreaking havoc on both your other plans and your self-worth. But you’re still not ready for the truth, so you push the ever-present doubt away, telling yourself it isn’t so.
But darling, it is.
Sure, he likes you. He likes being with you, because you’re so easy in more ways than one. You don’t make any demands, you’re the chill girl, always ready when he wants you to be. He thinks you’re pretty, he’s told you he loves spending time with you. He might even like you more than he likes to admit for himself. But he doesn’t make you a priority. He doesn’t change his schedule for you. He won’t commit to you. Not today, not tomorrow. He doesn’t drop everything to be with you. In fact, he doesn’t drop anything to be with you.
But more importantly, he doesn’t love you. He’s not in love with you. And if he doesn’t love you by now, he probably never will. He’ll forever dodge your questions about the future. He’ll forever keep giving you just enough to hang on to, but never enough to keep you truly satisfied or happy.
He’ll never give you what you deserve. He’s just not that into you.
And, baby, you know you deserve better. You know you should pick up your self-respect and leave his emotional unavailability behind, but you just can’t help yourself and stay. He makes you feel so special, he makes you feel so loved or at least something that looks like it. He makes you feel so wanted; hell, he makes you feel like the queen of the fucking universe. He’s become your guilty pleasure, something you just can’t be without, always leaving you wanting more.
Falling into love can be wonderful, but falling out of fairy tales hurts like hell.
So I ask you, where did the strong woman go? The one with the high standards, integrity, and pride? The one who knew she deserved nothing less than the moon and the stars and the entire universe? Where did she go, the one that had been so badly hurt and betrayed before, who had learned about love the hard way? Where did she go, she who promised herself never to fall victim to false play again? Where did she go, that woman she fought so hard to become – the beautiful, strong woman with her heart on her sleeve, so deserving of a man who’d shower her with nothing less than pure love, respect and attention?
I wonder, where did you go?