I know that I’m not what you wanted, am I? Wanted someone who I used to be like. Now you think I’m not trying. “Appointments,” Julien Baker
Talking about my feelings has never come easy to me. It’s hard to express them, hard to fully explain and accept them. I feel guilty for most of the feelings I have, or ashamed that I have them at all. Add this fun character flaw to having just been dumped by the love of my life, and you get a pretty combustible emotional wreck.
I met Poly Girl at the tail end of my relationship with The Ex. I was sad because I knew the relationship was ending, I was hurt, felt used and betrayed. The perfect time to meet someone new, right?
We met online, and began talking daily. She lived two hours away, which was fine at first because I assumed nothing would come of it. But somehow feelings developed, rather quickly in fact, and suddenly I found myself trying to plan a trip to go meet her.
She was married and had five kids. Two things I never wanted. But she was looking for a girlfriend on the side. Actually she wasn’t, but she told me that’s what she wanted. What she really wanted was to keep her husband and family and then add a wife to the mix. A wife who would move in and share a bedroom with her and her husband. A wife that would take on the responsibility of helping with the kids. A wife who was willing to give up her own wants and needs and assimilate into the lifestyle that Poly Girl designed. Well… that wasn’t me.
But I was hurting, broken-hearted, and Poly Girl showered me with affection, gifts and money. (She and her husband have quite a bit of expendable dough) I was sucked in by the attention, by the promises of travel and excitement. And I wanted someone to actually care about me, which The Ex clearly did not.
“Maybe it’s all gonna turn out alright. And I know that it’s not, but I have to believe that it is.”
Poly Girl never had qualms of letting me know each and every way I wasn’t meeting her expectations. I was consistently badgered for not being over The Ex. How I wasn’t as fun as I used to be. I was often made to feel guilty for not giving her enough attention. If I spoke to one of her children in the wrong way I was chastised. It was exhausting. I just wanted to be taken care of, but Poly Girl had some pretty major health problems going on and was wanting the same thing.
I was foolish and introduced her to a few of my close friends. They loved her. They were confused by the polyamorous thing; mainly that I was willing to be involved in it. I am INCREDIBLY jealous by nature, and being a part of a poly relationship is not my style. Nor will I ever do it again. I don’t share well… But most of my friends thought she was fun and enjoyed her sense of humor. And, of course, she tried to impress them all by buying drinks and dinner and letting them sit in her brand new Ford Mustang. I loved that car… I enjoyed showing her off. I enjoyed the newness of it. But there was no way it could last.
“You don’t have to remind me so much how I disappoint you. It’s just that I talked to somebody again that knows how to help me get better. Until then I should just try not to miss anymore appointments.”
One thing I will always appreciate Poly Girl for was forcing me to get into counseling. I honestly don’t think I would have survived had she not insisted. A few times after The Ex and I split up and Poly Girl and I would fight, I found myself planning ways to end it all. And I don’t say that lightly. I have attempted suicide twice in my lifetime- once in middle school and once when I was in my early twenties. I am old enough and have trained myself enough to know when I’m in trouble emotionally, and when those creeping thoughts about how it would just be better if I wasn’t here start to take over, I know either how to deal with them or who to contact to talk me down from the ledge. It’s an ongoing battle, and one that I was struggling with in the midst of being dumped and being overly criticized for not being enough. I had nearly convinced myself that it was truly time to just give up and let life go when Poly Girl demanded I get into counseling. I did, and it was an incredibly freeing experience.
I had been in counseling before, but this time I tried online counseling, where the psychiatrist and I spoke through messages at our convenience. I was able to be much more honest and open. I could really take my time and express how I was feeling instead of just saying what I thought someone wanted to here. I highly suggest it. And I plan to do more in the future. Opening up and really talking through what’s going on in your life is important for your sanity. Just like this blog…
“Nothing turns out like I pictured it. Maybe the emptiness is just a lesson in canvases. I think if I fail again that I know you’re still listening.”
I made a lot of mistakes through my breakup with The Ex and my relationship with Poly Girl. I learned a lot about myself and how I handle loss. How I treat others while I’m completely broken. And how important it is to reach out, even if you have to be forced to do so, and get the help that you need.
I’m glad I’m still here. I’m glad you are too.