Tuesday, 30 June 2009


The measure of love is what you are willing to give up for it, or so a very sentimental poet once said. But what happens if you keep on coming up empty? In order to find a new bright future, sometimes you need to go back to your past, to understand old mistakes and try your hardest not the repeat them. My biggest disappointment has been what happened with 'H'

It's finally occurred to me why geting 'H' out of my system has been so hard for me. Part of me is still hanging onto someone who wasn't real with me on any level at any time or ever available. He is someone who will now because of all of his actions, remain a very harsh lesson in reality.

He added a powerful dimension to my life at a difficult time for me. Just being with him underlined bluntly the fun, passion and mental stimulus that what was missing between R and me. And if I'm honest (which I always am, even to the detriment of myself sometimes) I miss him still, or rather I miss the person I got to be in his presence. Sexy, sassy and totally optimistic about love, something which I am not as much now.

I have resisted the temptation to contact him, expecially when I remembered our very last non-meeting. Yet another home 'emergency' led to his lastminute.com one line e-mail cancellation. He knew he was lying and I knew he was lying. He was always so rubbish at it and I marvelled at his continuing belief, that I was so very gullible and stupid, that I would absolutely believe anything that he told me.

Since then nothing. Not one word. Initially, I was really, really worried in case something terrible had happened to him or his children, but as F (who absolutely hated 'H', from the moment I got involved with him and constantly told me what a dog he was) bluntly told me one night over dinner.

"Consider yourself Xd. Men either behave so badly that you women leave us or we just ignore you. Cowardly you're damned right it is, but at least we don't have to deal 'the situation' or you' or our actions. We simply get to walk away".

But for seeing H's name flash up on a business directory recently, for all I knew he might as well have disappeared like the white rabbit through the looking glass, into a sliding door universe where we had never met. It didn't occur to him that I'd be worried, or upset or hurt by his disappearing act, why should he be after all it was a speciality of his.

What made it all the painful was that we had only recently seen each other again after a year and a half of pretending that the other didn't exist. Our reunion was full of the normal things people say in impossible situations "I feel so guilty when I see you" "I know this is wrong but....." Every cliche in the book and then some.

The crazy thing is that for all of his lying, lying and more lying both to me and himself, I can honestly say that I was never been so nuts about someone. I admired him from afar, a long time before we exchanged a few water cooler conversations.

I used to smile as he stood with his hands on his hips, like I later teased him " a double ended teapot", when trying to get a point across to another colleague at work; or stroking the back of his head, when trying to figure out some unfathomable spreadsheet, containing some formula he just couldn't figure out. When I left the company where we both worked for another 'exciting opportunity', he suggested a farewell drink and that's where it all started.

I revelled in 'talking' to him, his silly e-mails, getting that first filthy morning text message from him. I loved his dour self deprecating humour, his razor sharp mind, his love for his family and friends, his passion, his body, and just the fact that no one ever made me feel as smart, appreciated, wanted and sexy as he did.

But ultimately, it just wasn't enough. He would always ask me what I wanted from him, but he never actually listened to what I said to him - I had no expectations whatsoever, how could I? Instead I wanted to be a friend, a cherished confidante (like with F and Tigger, who aren't ex's just male friends I have, who truly want the best for me), someone who had his back; but he never had mine.

I didn't question our situation ever or make demands of him. I asked him for nothing more than to always be straight with me and not to lie with me. Not to scrub around thinking of some suitably dramatic lie, to stop me dead in the tracks of any possible recriminations. He just couldn't do that.

When someone lies to you once it hurts. When someone lies to you always, it is like a slow burning fire in your chest, gradually ebbing away until your respect and loyalty have turned to disappointment; and your trust in that person and who they are has been completely extinguished.

There are two types of heartbreak - absolute - when you have been wronged against through no fault of your own and "just deserts heartbreak" - where you have trepassed in someone else's life and even though you think you might just come out of the situation in one piece and vaguely trimphant even, the only outcome will ever be your own unhappiness.

Do I regret getting involved with him? No...and yes. No - because I was myself with him, more so than with any other man. I was open, honest and loyal from start to finish, perhaps so honest that the only thing he could do with honesty like that was to trash it.

Yes - because being given the opportunity to press my nose up against the glass on something I really wanted to work, but didn't, has taken away some of my optimism about relationships in general. The rose tinted glasses are gone and I'm more 'real' then I've ever been.

The barriers are up and I now regard men as undefineable Chinese puzzles - to be dealt with at arms length, with kit gloves using extreme caution. I've learnt that even the 'nice guys' can have the shady gene that can hurt you, without it pricking their conscience, sometimes more than you ever have been by anyone else before or since.

I've learnt that just because you are unconditional with your affection for someone in whatever capacity, it doesn't mean the same affection will be returned to you or that the person in question will treat you the same affection or respect. It doesn't mean the person is a bad person, it just means they don't care enough about you. They are't bothered.

He once said to me that he was frightened that I could ruin his life and therein lies the fundamental difference between us. Whereas it would never occur to me to 'rock the boat' or 'hurt' him intentionally out of spite or even self preservation, to really mess him up, his indifference about hurting me is what finally showed me what my true value was to him.

If you are a man or woman of any substance, you will learn this harsh lesson when it is dealt to you by your undercover lover. You will own that you have been nothing more than a dirty little secret or a fickle distraction. You will take responsibility for your actions, forgive yourself for caring or loving where you shouldn't and then in time let it go. I have.

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