We had been fighting. Every tiny provocation, that would typically not even get acknowledged, would cause a weeklong raging argument. Every word that came out of his mouth was one tiny little snowflake that would fall on top of the snowy mountain and cause an avalanche. When I responded in this way, his first instinct was to ignore me and hope that these overwhelming negative emotions I had would subside. After a couple days of not really talking to each other, they would. But then the next snowflake would fall, and it would start all over again.
He was unhappy, I was unhappy. I do not know why we stayed together. I would break up with him, and then a couple hours later feel so alone that I would apologize and ask him to take me back. As all of this was happening, and as I type this, I realize that this behavior gets you the label of “crazy girlfriend”.
However, looking back, the way I acted makes sense. During this time, one of my parents had severe health problems that could have taken him away from me at any second; my roommate was taking out her own problems on me; my semester academically was tremendously challenging; I was in financial trouble. Every chapter of my life was going awry.
Throughout all of this, I did not realize it, but I completely withdrew from my support network. When my close friends would call or ask to hang out, I could always come up with a reason why I would not be able to make it. The one person who was always there, even though I would never communicate what was actually going on, was my partner.
But after months of this, he had enough. We had been in one of our typical weeklong arguments and I broke up with him. This time it was only minutes later that I called him back and said I was sorry. But he had had enough. He told me everything that I would have told a friend to say to their significant other. “I love you but I cannot be in this relationship anymore.” “Every little thing I do sets you off and I can’t be with you if everything I do makes you miserable.”
Hearing this broke my heart. I felt pain throughout my whole body and could feel my heart pounding as he spoke those words to me. I felt like I could not breathe and I did not know how to act or what to do. The next couple of days consisted of me reliving every beautiful memory we had shared on repeat, every time feeling a rush of pain when one of those thoughts crossed my through my mind. I felt it all. Regret. Nostalgia. Distraught. Remorse.
Looking back, now that I am starting to heal, I like to believe that I can see what happened clearer. I can think about it almost without pain. I should have been honest. I should have at least given him a chance. But no one’s life is perfect, and everyone goes through periods where everything seems to be going wrong. I wish I could go back and tell the person I was then what I know now. But I can’t.
I don’t leave this experience with regrets though. I leave with an incredibly important lesson that I would not have known if it had not been for this event. You cannot rely completely on your partner for support. You cannot expect someone to be there for you if you do not tell them what is going on and how you are feeling. Yes, they might completely let you down. But you never know when there will be that one person that will help you rise back up again. Now that I’m better equipped to be vulnerable, I look forward to meeting that person one day and weathering the storms of life together.