Something Ventured, Nothing Gained


What Being With Him Cost Me

  1. I neglected my best friend, in a time of need. Her husband died, and while I was present at the end and after the funeral, a fall semester that should have been dedicated to checking on her was spent avoiding her. Because I couldn’t deal with my own stupid life.  I can’t shake that feeling and I can’t make up for it. I hurt my closest confidant.
  2. My job, that I loved and had for eight years. Enough said.
  3. Someone I used to work with that only casually knew me commented the other day that she felt like I was just a liar. Because I wasn’t honest about my life. Casual friends want nothing to do with me.
  4. I owe money to everyone I’ve ever met now.  I used to be financially responsible and I am not longer even close to independent.
  5. I didn’t see my parents or my grandmother more than twice from August to December.
  6. I had a great life up until July. I was happy, and moving toward being ready to really meet someone to share my life with. I’m back to square one and want everyone away from me.
  7. My life isn’t the same. I live in a different city, in a different place, and I miss the old stuff.
  8. I don’t trust myself to do the right thing anymore.

What Being With Him Gained Me

  1. I wasn’t lonely sometimes this fall.

That’s all I’ve got right now.  I hope in time I will see something better from this.  But for right now…it sucks.

The Letter I Wish I Had Received


Dear S,

I know I hurt you and I am sorry.  Specifically, I have hurt you since the beginning of our relationship.  I have told you several lies and manipulated you since we met, and I am sorry.  I have specifically used you as an emotional toy and played house with you a lot, all the while pursuing other people as a “real life”.  You were never my real option, and I am sorry.  A kind person would have seen how much you cared about me (and I don’t know why you do!) and felt bad that I could not return the same love and respect.  I am not a kind or good person.  I have treated you wrong. I am sorry that you ruined a relationship with someone who cared about you and left you in a mess and moved away.  I am sorry that I thought that a good life did not include someone like you, because you are a good person.  Marrying for money is a dumb idea.  Marrying for looks is even worse.  I am sorry I treated you like a second class person.

I am sorry that I got married and didn’t tell you.  I did this because I feared that you wouldn’t be my friend anymore and I wanted to keep a connection with you.  It was less about sex or intimacy and more about needing someone in my life, and probably needing to be friends with your family during football season.  So I had a giant wedding and tried to live the life I always wanted and keep you hovering in the background.  I know that you are smarter than that, and I know that you knew every single thing I was doing and were kind enough to just not mention it, probably because you were afraid that if you did mention it, I’d leave.  We are both frightened people, aren’t we?  I just show it in a much worse way.

Recently I have used you even further.  I called you in a time of desperation and came to your home and stayed with you.  I never made an effort to get a job, make a fresh start, or do the right thing.  I willfully lied to you about court dates, my legal status, and what I did with my days.  I slept them away because I was depressed.  I skipped court because I was scared.  I don’t know where I am going in life and I was trying to figure it out while in your home. I made you feel like you could or had to help me, when in fact I am not prepared to let you help me because that would require real intimacy and truth. I have a lot of things going on in my head.  I am confused about my sexuality and my values, and this translates into my behavior being damaging and threatening to you.

It wasn’t fair to you to take your life, which was a really good life–a life you should have been proud of, and turn it upside down.  I should have tried harder.  I should have looked for a job.  I should have helped you save your money, and I shouldn’t have made you feel guilty when you couldn’t get me what I wanted.  I shouldn’t have asked you for money for a car, or bail, or anything else.  I should have contributed to your household while I was there, in some meaningful way other than washing your car (and spending money to do it).  I shouldn’t have broken in to your piggy bank either, because that’s a real asshole move too. Speaking of, reading your email, facebook messages, and twitter messages was rude too. I am rude.

I should have told you how proud I was of your transformation before I came back.  I should have told you that you are a nice person and you need to stay away from people like me.  I should have seen that you are like my mother, a person who loved me for no reason other than I am a person who deserves it and yet I treat you in an abusive way—physically and mentally.  Just like my dad did to me and my mom.  He hurt me, and it makes me unable to have a real relationship.

I am sorry that when I noticed you were struggling, I didn’t do anything to help.  In fact, I made it worse by leaving at all hours of the night, not coming back for days at a time, and gaslighting you when you noticed something was up.  I should have moved on, or, if I wasn’t ready, I should have respected you and not behaved like a complete fucking asshole and followed your simple rules.  I can’t do this, because I’m an epic douche bag.  I never should have called you, probably.

I am sorry that I came to your home on Thanksgiving and Christmas and used your family’s hospitality and then still didn’t treat you well.  You asked your family to love and care for me, and I couldn’t do the same for you.

I’m sorry I got arrested three times in the fall. There is no excuse for a college educated, well taught person like me to be involved in anything untoward.  I have the wits and the means to do business honestly.  I will do that in the future.

There is no reason that someone should hurt you, because you are a human being and deserve to be loved and respected by your friends and family.  You are funny and smart.  You care about people on a deep level that makes me jealous.  I wish I could care about people and make connections with them.  I wish that I was compelled to live a good life like you are.  I am so sorry I wasted some of your youth by keeping you at an arm’s length.  I know that you are a hurt person, too, and I know that’s why I could manipulate you.  I know that you will find someone who is a good friend and a great lover and who would never ever hurt you.  And even if you don’t, I know that your life will be awesome.  I hope you can forgive me, but not forget this lesson, and I hope that soon you don’t have the urge to talk to me.  You are worth a lot, and deserve someone who is equal.   Let me be clear—there is nothing wrong with you that made me act the way I did.  There is no excuse for one person to treat a human being the way I treated you.  At all.  IT IS NOT YOUR FAULT.

Good luck,

J.