Friday, February 8, 2008

Reflections of a Breakup, Part VI; An Open Letter

I hate the way things are going between us! Being forced to live together has been as rough on you as it has on me, I know that. I’m so frustrated now that I can’t begin to tell you what I’m feeling at this moment. But I feel I have to get them out…

I know I’ve always pegged you as the one who doesn’t communicate, but I have to admit that I’ve been doing my fair share of avoiding conversation, especially the past few weeks. I think my breakdown in communication comes out of fear. When we broke up, I told you that I loved you and I still do. This breakup has caused a lot of unexpected feelings and behaviors between us. I guess I was naïve to think that you’d been feeling the same things I was feeling, and were already at an emotional point in time where we could easily become the friends I thought we’d always be. At the time, I believed we could make that transition. I hate to say it, but right now I don’t believe that may ever happen.

Right now I feel like I’m at a moment where I’m going to find out whether or not my perceptions were real. I’ve questioned your feelings towards me for a long, long time and have always feared hearing the words, “I don’t love you” come out of your mouth. You told me once that you didn’t like me sometimes, and it really hurt!

Jay, I know deep inside that you love me. How could you not after twenty years together? I want to tell you here and now that I still love you and I always will. We’ve had a lot of good times…we were kindred spirits for over twenty years. This is a heartrending situation for both of us, just the same.

For a long time, I’ve felt la lot of guilt. I don’t know how much you regret what’s happened to us, or if you regret it at all. I can only guess. Outwardly, it turns out that I was the one who officially ended our relationship, so ever since I feel like the bad guy. Rationally, I don’t believe I am. I think that inside you’ve wanted this too, so I’m feeling some of the same sorts of hurt as you are.

I ask you here, for the sake of the next guy, to learn to open up more. I’ve always had to guess what you were thinking or feeling. You never really shared anything with me. It often led me to think that you didn’t really love me, that you had accepted what you’d gotten in life. That simply wasn’t good enough for me. I felt unloved, many times. It left me unhappy and unfulfilled, and I guess I’d just given up trying to believe otherwise the last few years.

In a way right now I feel powerless, and sorry for myself. I need to work this out alone, but I wonder where we go from here. When we first broke up, I had feelings that our house was special to you and that maybe you’d find a way to keep it. I wouldn’t have minded. You loved it at first sight, and taught me over time to appreciate its beauty. But I knew I was in a better position to do it, and I couldn’t picture it as any stranger’s home.

I was happy when you agreed to have me buy it, and I have to admit I’ve wanted to get past this quickly, to get on with my life. I’m sure you, too are looking forward to the day when we truly part ways. I dread it and look forward to it at the same time. I’m sure that day will be the toughest of all.

So here and now we face a test. You know I can’t afford the house at the price it was appraised for. We both underestimated the value it would come in at, by a lot. After my initial shock I’ve come to realize that I shouldn’t feel all this gloom and doom. I shouldn’t necessarily have to pay the price that the appraisal came in for, should I? If we put it on the market, do you think we’d really get that much money for it?

I see this situation as a breaking point, either an opportunity to let us part with the opportunity of salvaging some sort of a relationship, or a mechanism that will validate what I’d been feeling and sever our ties altogether. On one hand, I know you are kind-hearted. We share that trait, you know. I’m also scared that you’re going to play hardball with me, inflicting hurt upon me as maybe I’ve done to you. That would be the proverbial last straw on my back, bringing us to a place I never wanted to be, leading us further apart, and erasing happy memories of twenty years. I hope you’ll reflect on our lives together, and be fair with me. I deserve it, and I hope I can still buy this house not for just my sake, but for the sake of salvaging a special relationship with an old friend. That’s all!

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