In a day and age where we have finally realized that no human is less human than another, and that all lives truly do matter, I find it funny (and somewhat awful) to see how exes treat each other. I won’t lie, I have been guilty of this in the past. Guilty of translating my pain for one of my exes into dehumanizing them. Whether it’s joking about wishing ill upon them, or straight out telling my friends how much of a dog he is. The dehumanizing of an ex can be dangerous, and even detrimental to one or both parties self-esteem. I hadn’t realized this until I became the Hated Ex.
Like most people, I’ve been through my fair share of breakups. I’ve been lucky to have fallen in love with some of the most amazing men I’ll ever meet, and out of this I have grown into a stronger person. With each relationship came a lesson learned and I can say, without hesitation, that I’ve never regretted dating a single one of them. This can even be said for the ex that made me feel like I was undeserving of being loved ever again, and even less human than I now know I am.
He and I fell hard and quickly in love with each other, and even faster out on his part. After what was the hardest 24 hours of my life, I had finally gained the courage to break off our relationship. One that I’d like to mention had a year of history, and another two years of a future riding on it. All seemed to be going as expected for a breakup; there was tears, pleading, questioning and eventually, acceptance. With him removing my shoes from his closet and dropping them on the floor in front of me, I gathered what remained of myself in his apartment and left.
It wasn’t until a few hours later that the texts started rolling in.
“I hate you.” “Fuck you, fuck your dog. Hope he runs away and never comes back.” “You don’t deserve to be loved, you don’t even deserve to live.”
I became a mixture of anxiety, depression, and self-hate.
Surely a man who knew me inside and out, and whom I still believe I’m in love with, couldn’t be unjustified in despising and degrading me this much. He must see something in myself that I don’t see that leads him to say these things to me. I must be this awful creature he now sees me as.
The texts kept flooding in while I begged and pleaded for him to forgive me. To forgive whatever awful things I had done to make him despise me this much. To make me appear as less human than him.
And this is where the problem resides in breakups. I know I’m not the first to hear malicious things like, “you’re just a hot body that I like to feel against me, but despise whatever is left inside of you.” Somehow people have grown to think that it’s okay to push another human’s self esteem down so far, in attempts to make themselves feel better in a breakup.
This is not okay. This will never be okay.
I get it: you’re angry that this person that you trusted has left you. And you’re probably mad that they now have this upper hand of being able to leave first, and are therefore not blindsided with being broken up with. I get all this negative shit that someone feels in a break up. But I also know that the person you’re cursing was once the apple of your eye, and the person that you looked forward to waking up to every day. Most importantly, they’re a damn person, and not a punching bag to take out aggression and heartbreak on.
So just like every other piece I’ve ever wrote, I will not leave you empty-handed, but rather with some advice.
- If you’re mad, hurt, or angry, stop contacting your ex. No good can ever come from an angry conversation, especially with a person you’ve had such a passionate relationship with.
- Think about how you’d feel if one of your brother’s, sister’s, or cousin’s exes spoke this way to them. Wouldn’t you be filled with rage and disgust that someone could say those things to another human being?
- As I mentioned before, you need to remember sometimes how much you cared about this person. You need to remember this individual for all the highs you had in your relationship, not only these last few lows.
- And most importantly, I don’t care if they cheated on you, got bored of the relationship, or just didn’t feel right dating you, this ex is just as human as you are, and they don’t deserve to be treated any less. No person deserves to be dehumanized.
I am in no way advocating for an #ExesLivesMatter movement, but I am asking for people to stop being degrading to other human beings over a broken relationship. I’m asking for everyone to look and remember the beauty in relationships instead of sitting on the hot coals of animosity when something doesn’t go as planned with someone else. This is a long, beautiful life that we’re all living, so move on and live it instead of pushing someone else down because they couldn’t feel give you their companionship.
Feature Image via Arielraee.