The Bad Boy


I’ve been destroyed by the dissolution of relationships in about as many ways as you could imagine. In attempts to make sure that the heartbreak that I’m barely keeping at arm’s length from being dumped by Romeo doesn’t kill me, over the past two weeks I’ve been doing a post-mortem on all the previous times that a break up has unraveled me, him or both of us in my Little Black Book.

My mantra: You’ve survived this before. You’ll survive this again.

At times I look back on my past and see that I was such a cliche I want to slap myself.

Girl has Daddy issues. Girl goes to college. Girl goes buck wild and has her fair share of dalliances. Girl starts working as a bartender. Girl meets a college dropout, hoop-earring wearing, drug dealing, “Tell Your Mom To Stop Texting me” tshirt wearing, bartending asshole- heretofore known as The Bad Boy. Girl dates The Bad Boy with varying degrees of consciousness about how much she’s doing it to piss off her father. Girl finally wises up and dumps The Bad Boy.

End scene, right?

Wrong.

This will continue to become abundantly apparent the more you read my blog, but I have a natural tendency towards stubbornness. At it’s best this manifests itself as tenacity and a determination that won’t let anyone or anything stand in my way. At it’s worst this is me not being able to step back enough from a situation to see the trees for the forest. At it’s very worst it’s what keeps me in relationships long after I should have left because there is some unstoppable, innate force that makes me both want to prove I can fix anything and makes me think I don’t deserve the type of happiness that until this year I thought was reserved for the simple minded. So of course The Bad Boy and I drug this out way beyond any reasonable end date.

Here’s the thing though- there is no scenario in which he and I should have ever been together. It just happened. It was like an alternate universe. Literally every single person that I ever introduced him to looked at me with these confused “wait, you’re kidding, right” looks on their faces. When I introduced him to my friend Grace, she actually laughed out loud. She wasn’t trying to be mean. She genuinely thought I was kidding. So from day one that he started pursuing me, I knew I was out of his league. Yes, that’s a huge douche bag thing to say, but it’s also reality. He was dating up BIG time with me. I knew it. He knew it. Our bosses knew it. His own mother told him that pretty much every day. So let me tell you why I not only let this guy pursue me, but also why it continued long after it ever should have:

1. He pursued me hardcore for months. Like bringing me flowers, throwing guys out of the bar for making lewd comments about me, asking me every day “so when are you going to let me finally make you happy” kind of pursued me. At this same time I had been sleeping with Arf You Busy for a few months now and it was abundantly clear that Arf You Busy had no intention of dating me while I clearly wanted to be dating him. After one night with Arf You Busy that left me particularly jilted, I left in the middle of the night and drove straight to The Bad Boy’s house. When I showed up unannounced, he didn’t ask any questions but just gave me a hug, started a hot shower for me, brought me a drink, and let me cry in the shower for an hour before I came out ready to face the world again. The next morning we made “us” official.

2. If you’ve never dated an asshole before, let me tell you why it’s so special: there is something so remarkably affirming about watching someone treat everyone around them like shit and then worship you. It’s better than being on drugs; it’s like being the drug.

3. We were actually happy in our little bartending bubble. I was still going to school full time and working three other jobs to stay on top of my bills, but he had plenty of money saved up from his really lucrative business as a drug dealer, so he totally spoiled me. When you’re drowning in debt, working 80 hour weeks, and taking 13 hours in school, your love language is money. No, that’s not a real love language. But when you ain’t getting shit from home and there’s a man that wants to buy all your meals, pick up all your tabs, cover your expenses and fly you to Hawaii? They start to feel an awful lot like someone you could spend the rest of your life with.

So when he broke up with me, I was beyond confused. He said he had gone ring shopping and realized that there wasn’t a ring big enough to make him feel like he would be good enough for me. All I heard was “you went from ring shopping to dumping me. Dumping ME. YOU pursued ME. YOU worshiped ME. YOU are the one that’s grateful for ME. YOU weren’t good enough for ME. And now you are DUMPING ME?!?!?!?!?”

This is where the stubbornness comes back to bite me in the ass again. Instead of just accepting that he was actually being incredibly selfless by walking away when he knew we would never be happy, I acted like a psycho. Like crying at his front door psycho. It wasn’t about love; it was about pride.

I realize this makes me sound like an incredibly unlikeable person. I was narcissistic, self indulgent, and arrogant; but again, all I ever promised was to be honest, and being truly honest means being okay with being uncomfortable about who you’ve been.

We finally dissolved over time, as all failed relationships eventually do. For a few years he tried to text me to see if we could be friends, but I wouldn’t let it happen. Honestly, I knew that I was so addicted to being the drug that it could only destroy us both.