I will never forget getting dumped by a boyfriend for the first time. His best mate delivered the news to me. I was no longer his girlfriend. He just wanted to be friends.
I can recall thinking at the time, ‘But we were not even friends to start with.”
In fact, I think we barely even spoke a word to each other.
I was eleven and had been dumped, it turns out, because I refused to sit next to my boyfriend at the back of the bus.
I told his mate to pass on the message that I hated his guts and didn’t care.
But, inside I was struggling with this feeling of sadness. Why me? What was wrong with me? These feelings lasted for a few days until the next Blue Light Disco rolled around, when another boy told me his friend liked me and what did I think about that?
I totally rebounded into the next silent relationship.
Fast forward to my teenage years and I got dumped good and proper. On my ass over the phone. I had been “in love” with this boy. We spent hours on the phone every night and I had even met his parents.
I fantasized about marrying him. He used to write me letters that were 10 pages long. He was a romantic 16 year-old and I was sucked in hard. We were together for about 6 months when I got dumped. A phone call. No explanation. Out of the blue.
I took to my bed in teenaged dramatic fashion. I listened to Sinead O’Connor sing her heart out, over and over again.
It’s been seven hours and fifteen days
Since you took your love away
I go out every night and sleep all day
Since you took your love away
Since you been gone I can do whatever I want
I can see whomever I choose
I can eat my dinner in a fancy restaurant
I said nothing can take away these blues
`Cause nothing compares
Nothing compares to you
I could not get over it. My befuddled juvenile brain was tortured and my heart was smashed to pieces.
Eventually, I did what any self-respecting lass would do in a similar situation.
I stalked him.
Stalking was hard back then as social media, and the internet for that matter, did not exist so I had to turn to more traditional routes. Which meant enlisting the help of unwilling spies who happened to be mutual friends.
I was a diligent stalker and eventually tracked him down one afternoon at a social gathering where I demanded to know why I had been tossed aside like an empty tube of Clearasil.
And boy, did he rip the Band-Aid off that one. Turns out I had been dumped because I would not let him play with the area south of my navel!
I remember looking at him with complete disbelief. And then I served him up an earful, trailing off with the fact that indeed he had forever lost the chance to get anywhere near my pants, let alone in them.
It was a public spectacle and as I walked away, I half expected Aretha Franklin to pop out of the bushes and start singing…. R.E.S.P.E.C.T.
It did teach me something though. How not to dump a person. That was the last time I ever got dumped. I went on to be the dumper, but I took a far more humane approach. And it was only 3 times.
Direct conversations, hand holding and listening to tearful pleas from unsuitable suitors who I would briefly fall for, before realizing that they were not my Romeo after all. Convincing them that it was not them, it was me.
Which was, of course, complete bullshit. Was so them.
One lad, in particular, needed a lot of intensive counselling and I was there for him for about a month, until he met someone else and found happiness again.
A happy ending for all involved.
Recently, a friend of mine got dumped. It was not a big deal, it was the end of a casual fling. But the rules were broken when the fellow in question asked her for her single girlfriend’s phone number, as he was keen to get to know her next.
Excuse me, fella? Have you sustained a serious head injury lately? That is the height of bad manners.
There is dumping, and then there is heart smashing. And some assholes know just how to deliver their message to ensure maximum impact…
Like the pizza delivery box.
Or something a little more obvious?
Or perhaps you could go down a more cryptic route.
As Kelly Clarkson attests, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, which is cold comfort if you have been on the receiving end that uncomfortable conversation.
I often wonder how George Clooney manages to drift in and out of public relationships and come off smelling like roses each time. My only conclusion is that he is the exception. Some sort of catch and release program with ladies drinking up all that Clooney goodness before being set free.
He has avoided collecting a reputation for being an asshole. I am probably willing to have him break up with me, for no other reason that seeing how an expert does it.
Many expert articles suggest that when ending a relationship, you must use style and sensitivity. Something that my former true love, truly lacked.
Now excuse me while I go eat my dinner in a fancy restaurant.