I was young and impressionable when I met my last ex. I’d only been in two relationships before and both of my former boyfriends had cheated on me, so my faith in men was already a little shaken. Perhaps that’s why this particular guy was able to worm his way into my life and leave me completely devastated. To be honest, I’m still not sure I’m over it.
We’d known each other for years but the timing never felt right. He was a high school crush and a boy that I’d had my eye on for what felt like forever. We always flirted and laughed and talked about our deepest and darkest fears, but he was constantly with other girls or I was with another guy. Even though we both clearly liked each other and talked all the time, there never seemed to be the right opportunity for us to actually bite the bullet and get together already.
We both went off to college and he got a long-term girlfriend. Before anything could happen between us, we both headed off to colleges in different states. We promised to keep in touch, but we were preoccupied with other things. I stayed solo until my second year of college but he got into a relationship pretty quickly. The ironic thing was that we still talked all the time. I remember thinking that I wouldn’t be happy if I was his girlfriend and I found out that he was constantly flirting with someone else, but I couldn’t just stop myself from speaking to him. I was oddly drawn to him and I just knew we were going to be something amazing one day.
We had a Christmas kiss. When we were both home from college for the holidays, I couldn’t help but be thrilled when he told me that he was on a break with his girlfriend. We then ran into each other on a night out and inevitably kissed. Our chemistry was off the charts. He vied to break things off with this girlfriend for good so that we could finally give things a go.
He ditched his ex. Imagine my delight when I received a text message before New Year’s telling me that he’d broken up with his girlfriend. “Great,” I thought, “I can start a new year with him by my side instead of always being a step behind him.”
We arranged our first date but it never happened. I was on cloud nine. I felt like I’d already fallen for him when we were “friends” so to me, this was a perfect situation. After years of longing and hoping, I couldn’t believe that we were finally going on our first date. I couldn’t eat or sleep, I was that excited. It felt like things were meant to be. Sadly, that first date never happened. He gave a vague excuse that he didn’t realize he had a dentist appointment or something ridiculous. I gave him the benefit of the doubt and tried to rearrange things, but he wouldn’t commit and slowly became more distant.
We went back to college and things completely changed. We stopped talking like we used to. When we did talk, he stopped flirting. It was chitchat only. I knew something was up, but I thought he’d just got a bad case of cold feet. Our relationship had been built up to a massive amount, and I just thought he was freaking out with the pressure of finally being able to commit to each other.
I saw that he got back with his ex. Thanks to the wonder of Facebook and social media, it wasn’t long before I saw that he’d got back with his college girlfriend. I had to continuously deal with photos of them being splashed everywhere, kissing, cuddling, and just looking generally loved up. It made me feel sick to my stomach.
I mourned everything that could have been. I was devastated. I’d been adamant and convinced myself that we’d finally reached a point where we could be together properly. And not only be together but be something special. I can’t describe the feelings I felt when the life I had planned out with him was suddenly taken away from me.
It drove me to new levels of upset. I’d always had my demons when it came to anxiety, but it was this upset that put me on a downward spiral to depression. I struggled to get out of bed for lectures, I lost enjoyment in things that once gave me great joy, and I generally felt like I had a dark cloud hanging over me for 99% of the time.
It was the first time I was diagnosed with depression. I went to the doctor because I knew that I didn’t feel “normal,” and that was the first time of a few in my life so far that I was diagnosed with mild depression. It was relieving to know that there was a condition for what I was going through, but I couldn’t believe that I’d let a guy affect my mental health that much.
I cut contact and got better. I stopped speaking to him and instead focused on getting better. Slowly but surely, the pieces of my soul that had been destroyed in the car-crash of our relationship returned to me. It wasn’t long before I felt almost whole again.
I haven’t been the same since. I’ve never really got over that experience, as it triggered off the start of my life-long journey with depression. However, I’ve learned to forgive and forget. It obviously wasn’t ever meant to be with him and I’d rather have found out then than later on down the line.
I want to thank him. I want to thank the boy in question because I wouldn’t change a thing about the situation. In going back to his ex, he taught me to finally let go of him. Would I have still battled depression if it wasn’t for what happened? Probably. But either way, I’m glad I did, as it made me the person I am today. And I’m pretty awesome.