I originally planned to write this post in the near future but after seeing a particularly heart wrenching video on 'The Scene' YouTube channel yesterday, my future plans became more immediate. The video features Courtney and Leonard ,exes, who are discussing why Leonard cheated on Kourtney during their relationship. From the opening moments, I couldn't help but scream at my computer yelling "NOOOOO" as Kourtney asked all of the questions that you think you want to know but really just make the situation worse. While I would have loved to do an analysis of every question and response in this video, I instead took to my iPhone, to discuss with my oldest friends what they wish they would have done after their past breakups. What I found is that after much heartbreak and countless mistakes, we all had pretty similar things to say.
1. BREAK UP SOONER
As I mentioned in my previous post, I was in a toxic situation and there were red flags from the very beginning. I spent about two years justifying certain situations, making excuses for us etc. and then came a circumstance in which I knew without a doubt that we should break up. For me, this occurred was when I wanted to stop having sex and he didn't. As I sat on the phone, shocked at his response, I thought of my younger sister who I knew I would advise to remove herself from the situation. "You're too fine not to have sex with", he said. We broke up that night, got back together the next week and then broke up for good a little over a year later. The second break up was so.much.worse. This brings me to...
2. DON'T GET BACK TOGETHER
Sure, there are couples who break up, get back together and ended up happily married after. These people, in my opinion, are the minority. This is not a common theme in the world of break ups. Remember that movie with Jennifer Aniston and Vince Vaughn, called the 'The Break Up'? Did you notice that they didn't get back together? I took it upon myself to retrieve more insight on the actual definition of 'breakup'. Webster's states: the separation or breaking up of something into several pieces or sections. 2.the end of a relationship. Some synonyms are; end, dissolution, breakdown, failure, collapse. Don't get me wrong, I'm not a cynic, I do believe there are things that are broken that can be repaired. But when we break up with someone, is it that something needed to be repaired or replaced?
I was broken and God redeemed me, He payed the price for me to become new, to become whole. I'm not who I used to be, and how I have changed took more than just repair, I have been transformed. So often we try to take old, dirty, broken pieces and make them look like they are new but they are the same. My friends and I also discussed how much easier it is to not get back together when you...
3. CUT OFF YOUR EX.
This is something all of my friends highlighted. This is something, I cannot stress enough. This is something I really wish Courtney would have done. I delayed years of healing because I refused to stop contacting my ex. We didn't even live in the same state but every time I talked to him, we would talk for hours, sometimes even until the sun came up and I would forget why we broke up in the first place. I would be thrown into deeper insecurity wondering how we could have so much chemistry and laughter between us and he still not want me. I was in a constant state of confusion as to why he had a girlfriend but would still answer the phone. It was torture. What I realize now is that I had an addiction to the pain and false sense of hope. As long as we still spoke, as long as I was stalking him and his new girlfriend on social media, I still felt connected. And feeling connected, even if it was painful, was more desirable to me that disconnecting forever.
I made the mistake of asking him questions about our relationship, continuing to hope he would say something different and he never did. I was disillusioned thinking that we could only truly end if we had some closure and what I found is closure isn't needed and seeking it is dangerous. Carrie Bradshaw explained this feeling perfectly in the first season of Sex and the City,
"Did I ever really love Big or was I addicted to the pain, the exquisite pain of wanting someone so unattainable?"
Big proceeded to drag Carrie along for ten more years, marry another person and then leave her at the altar. So, I would dare to say, Carrie deserved better but never actually wanted better for herself and therefore settled for a man who didn't even want to share an apartment after they got married.
Sex and the City may be a fictional show but so many of us are Carrie Bradshaw, desperately holding onto someone that never truly wanted us in the first place. So many of us are Kourtney, still in pain, but still willing to give time and energy to those who hurt us. I understand both women so deeply but I pray we will all stand firm and go forward, never looking back.