A tough-love love note
I get your point of view
As someone on the other side, I understand that you just want a response, yes or no. I understand how not getting one could be hurtful, and I get how you might be wondering “how is that hard?!” I acknowledge that you think I’m immature, or selfish, or rude. I know a big part of you just wants to hear me admit: I’m an asshole. Or a coward.
And even more than that, I know you just want me to care — even a fraction for you that you care about me.
I understand all of that about you and your viewpoint.
I’m just not sure you understand mine
And that’s what this is about.
First of all: I often *am* honoring The Golden Rule
Friends sometimes ask if I’ve ever been ghosted, and tbh, I don’t know. If I were,
- I probably wouldn’t notice.
- If I did, I probably wouldn’t care.
- Either way, I definitely wouldn’t keep texting.
And I guess, with bullet 3, that means: no, I never have. And never will be.
Because I’d move the fuck on with my life, and take the situation as is.
And frankly, if I got the sort of text you guys say you want, I’d honestly be like “wow, lol. That was dramatic.” That shit’s way more emotional than I need. Do not want.
Because I approach relationships lightly, and I don’t need others for my self esteem.
I don’t go into love looking for reassurance — I give myself enough security to stand on — and if things don’t work out or one of us walks, I don’t get hung up on it.
So part of me did Golden Rule and assume the same of you.
Why I left
Any number of infinite reasons, but also only one: it wasn’t working for me.
I wasn’t in it, there wasn’t enough, or, yeah, maybe you said or did something I didn’t like. Maybe you started pawing at me to solve all of your emotional needs — and clinginess isn’t cute. Maybe you started demanding more than I wanted to give. Maybe you started telling me how to live my life when you were barely a part of it. Maybe you started pressuring me to feel emotions I didn’t feel, or overrode the ones I did with dismissals or other explanations. Maybe you offended me. Maybe you got jealous. Maybe I just started to really not like the cut of your jib.
Or yeah, maybe it’s a slew of other “reasons:” work, my ex, my own emotions. Sure, lol. You can have that.
Honestly, the specifics don’t really matter. At the end of the day, I opted out.
Why I stopped responding
1.) I prioritized my viewpoint over yours
Going separate ways is no big deal to me (see above) and regardless of whether I know otherwise, I want it to not be a big deal to you.
2.) But you prioritize your viewpoint over mine, too
Like, you’re using big words like “mature” and “adult” because you’re upset and you think that’s what I’m not being. But my idea of maturity is just different than yours, and if you wanna talk big words, here’s some more vocab for you: “emotional self sufficiency.” Maybe, my dear, try that one on for size.
Because I want someone who has it, and that alone, just for starters, is one hell of an impasse with you.
3.) Maybe texting what you want to hear is a lie
You say you just want “a simple yes or no,” but I know you want to hear me take the blame for the fallout; want me to text you something like “I’m sorry, but ”
And the thing with that is:
- Explanations are excuses (and excuses drive me up the fucking wall)
- Explanations are often a lie. So you’re over there like “just say something — anything will do!” But I’m over here like “uh, it shouldn’t.”
- tbh I’m not sorry that this didn’t work out. (Why would I apologize that our separate humanness didn’t jive? That’s flat out dumb.)
You want “the honest truth text?” It’s gonna sound more like “I’m just not feelin’ it. Byee.” Anything more feels like a handhold-y white lie, and living like that just seems far worse.
4.) Maybe texting “no” feels premature
Maybe — maybe — I’m still on the fence and want a breather. Maybe I just need a minute to decide.
Like, just the other day, it was 2 hours into a friend’s cook-out before I let her know I wasn’t coming, because it took me that long to figure out if I was. And imo, 2 hours was still early enough I could’ve stopped by. (I mean, it was a cook-out.) Sometimes (see above) dating feels like that to us, too.
Maybe I don’t know yet. Maybe you want a formal yes or no where I don’t yet feel one, and I haven’t said anything because I can’t decide. Maybe if you gave me a hot minute, I’d be down. Probably not, but maybe. (And regardless, nobody’s telling you to wait around.)
5.) Maybe you won’t leave it at a simple text
And I do not want to discuss it. (See reason #1 — those are your needs, not mine.)
That “simple response” won’t solve your problems
You say you just want a simple text. But you also say that not getting answers keeps you up at night, wondering what went wrong.
Was it something I said? Something I did?
Me texting “I’m just not that into you” does nothing to answer those questions.
You already have your “yes or no”
Because actions speak louder than words. So if what you’re looking for is an answer to “is this still on?”, a lack of response is your “no.” If I wanted to be with you, you’d have one. And yeah, maaaybe we’re still on the fence or sort of in, but if what you want is black and white, then baby, here’s your sign.
Cold? Sure. Cruel? Maybe.
Clear? Certainly more than you make it out to be.
Your solution is with you and not me
Demanding to know why people ghost — or get them to stop — is just as futile as demanding that everyone use their turn signal and, when they don’t, to know why. That’s a fruitless obsession; move TF on and do you.
Because if you just go through life as a victim, spending your time hurt, raging against the machine, and preoccupied with whether or not other people could have/should have done things differently and why, then you’re setting yourself up for perpetual heartache. You can’t control others. You only control you.
So soothing your feelings of anxiety and rejection starts and ends with you, not me. Your solution is being able to stand on your own two feet, and loving yourself instead of depending on others for it.
Maybe you want me to say one more time that I’m a coward, or I’m an asshole. And if name-calling helps you move on, then I can.
But at some point it might pay to also turn inward, and instead ask yourself: but what am I?
What is it that you can do differently, besides linger on the hurt others do, or wishing upon a star for them to change?