We all have the ability to become magicians when it comes to rejection. The task of letting someone down is so dreadful that it actually causes some of us to perform a sort of “disappearing act.”
As much as being rejected sucks, being the rejecter is no party either.
I too used to be a magician. Too ridden with guilt and too cowardly to face those I could not get myself to return feelings for I often found it easier to simply disappear. The reasoning was always entirely selfish. I did not want to worry about anybody else’s feelings.
I would begin to phase them out. Long, descriptive texts became a few words. The emoticons that once decorated my words became nonexistent. And all of a sudden I became too busy to hang out. Then, poof I was gone.
Yes, most got the picture, but only when I experienced the unsettling feeling of being left without so much as a good bye did I realize how unimpressive the disappearing act was.
Being left in the purgatory of uncertainty is the worst feeling to have to deal with. Anxiety strikes and consumes your thoughts with the word “maybe.” Maybe they are just busy. Maybe I said something weird. Maybe he found that crazy blog I wrote a long time ago. Maybe he will call in a few days. Maybe he died. Followed by a frantic Facebook, Instagram or Twitter search for signs of life.
Of course, under all the layers of my inexplicable denial I knew what was going on, but without certainty my head would begin to rationalize things, and drive me crazy. After all on most occasions things had been great, stellar even. There had been laughter, and great conversations, and touching….lots of touching! What happened?
I have often experienced the unfortunate event of having my feelings slip through my fingers like water. I will meet an amazing man. One that I should love. One that I hope to love, so I entertain the idea for a few dates.
Butterflies turn into moths. I feel nothing.
This is nobody’s fault. Nor is developing feelings for someone else. Or wanting different things. Whatever the reason may be, leaving someone in the dust is an indirect way to make someone feel like they are unimportant. As though their feelings don’t matter. As though they are disposable even.
Some people come into our lives and want to give us their hearts. The least we can do is respect their feelings and time.
I have experienced a whole array of rejections. Guys have disappeared on me, guys who told me, “It’s not me, it you,” and one even went as far as sleeping with someone else while I sat with a stabbed heart crying in his living room listening to the betrayal.
It was never a fun experience and regardless of the method, it never got easy to get my ego bruised, but I did learn that when people were honest with me, it was easier to let go.
There was no torturing myself with the idea of “maybe.” It was over. I could appreciate the honesty. It sucked. But now I could simply move on. Letting go is not hard. Hanging on to the maybe is. Rip the band aide, I say. I’m a big girl. I can handle it.
There is no right way to let someone go. We may all have our ideal “dumping” situation in mind: he could at least call me, or tell me in person or he could at least return my text I hear people say. The point is we all want to be acknowledged and our feelings considered even if it is not something we want to hear.
The kind thing to do is to let someone go, without being an inconsiderate asshole about it.
The heart wants what it wants. I may not be able to control how I feel or how others treat me, but I can control how I treat others. Having been on both ends of a shitty situation I am too aware of how it feels to be on the stabbing end of the stick. I could no longer just disappear on people regardless of how hard it was to face them or the daggers that sometimes wounded egos disperse.
I appreciate those who come into my life and dare to invest their feelings in me. It takes guts to put yourself out there and being made to feel stupid about it is the worst thing we can do to one another.
Learning to be kind is a much more impressive act, as difficult as it may be.