what I learnt from my last situationship — a reflection
Have you ever looked back a situationship or relationship that had deeply affected who you are as a person now? The places that you spent together and the moments that you shared with them will forever be cherished. It will all be just a memory at the end.
I recently came across that a tweet that made me reflect on my last situationship and I wanted to reflect on it privately. I felt as though writing about it would be easier for me and it would help me break down some of my thoughts on it.
I have written a different version of this a few months ago, reflecting on the situationship but I was putting a lot of blame to myself instead of doing any logical thinking. They were more emotional reflections, which in that case was necessary, as that it was how I processed my experiences with people around me.
Before writing this, I wondered how and where I should start this story. I needed to be completely transparent and honest with myself to show that I have learnt from that experience. I decided to write down the parts that meant a lot to me and the parts where I had made mistakes. Of course, what is a reflective essay without admitting that you made mistakes too?
Last year, I met someone whom I thought was respectful and nice. I enjoyed spending time with him and looked forward to talking to him after work. We shared many interests such as food, (especially pesto pasta) movies and countless other things that I could list. I felt safe and comfortable around him and felt that I could talk to him about anything. He was kind and respected my boundaries and did not pressure me to do anything that I did not want to do, and I truly appreciated that.
When I shared some things about my past, he was kind enough to ask me questions. I was nervous to tell him about it because I was unsure of what he would think of me. If I did not open up to him that would not have been fair. When I opened up to him about my past, he had replied with a tone that made me somewhat uneasy. I ignored it. I assumed that maybe he might have not been in a situation like this before. So I brushed it off and kept on moving, slightly cautious of his response.
It was important for me to tell him because it was the first time I had ever told someone about my traumatic past. In the past, I have never shared them with anyone as I did not think that it was important. At that time, I had not dealt with it and did not understand the severity of it all. The way I dealt with my other situationships were deeply rooted in what had happened in my past.
Whenever someone said something that made me uncomfortable, I ghosted them without giving them any explanations. I had reacted inappropriately rude to someone who confessed that they had feelings for me and my immediate reaction was anger. Not because he had affections for me but he had lied and said that he did not want to pursue a romantic relationship with me, so eventually I moved on. A few months later, he told me the truth. Now, reflecting on what happened with him, I deeply regret that I reacted with a harsh reaction instead of having a normal conversation with him. I could not save that friendship and we ended up parting ways.
Reflecting on that situationship, my reaction to his confession was immature. I had blamed myself and carried that guilt with me for years. Now I understand that he had lied to me and that was not okay. I reflected on my anger towards him and it makes me wonder if that was the right way to handle that conversation? My emotion was valid. I was angry when he lied to me about it. I did not want to censor my emotions for someone that I once had feelings for in the past.
We spent the evening walking in the garden and sat down on a bench at one of my favourite spots in the area. We talked about our most embarrassing moments in life and our childhood growing up in our respective countries. He grew up in the countryside and I grew up on an island. Later, we said our goodbyes and made plans to see each other again.
I did not know what he was expecting in this situationship and I never asked, and it is ok. Sometimes you just forget to ask what your true intentions are when you spend time with someone. I got lost in the moment and that question slipped from my mind that day.
The truth is, I was insecure and dishonest (partially) regarding a few details about my life. I was dishonest to myself and him because I was unsure of how he would react. Maybe I was reluctant to share anything after his reaction I got when I opened up about my past. I am unsure. It did not even occur to me what I had done until the end of our situationship.
During that time, he had said something that personally offended me. I did not call him out on it, which is a decision that I regret every single day. It is not fair for me to be sad about any of this. I did not have any respect for myself or anyone else in that matter. It is truly something that I am ashamed of but what’s done is done.
If someone asked me what I had learnt in my last situationship, is to be more honest with myself and my partner. There is no harm in sharing your deepest secrets and trauma to someone in your life. I needed to spend time with people who respected me and does not think of me like a piece of trash. I have learnt to trust my instincts more often and to not doubt myself.
This is my side of the story. I did not write this article to remember him. I do not want to remember a man who has caused me pain. I wrote this article to ease my conscience hoping that I can grow and learn from this experience. I will look back at this situationship and remember the good times that we had but unfortunately, I have to keep in mind that it was not that great for me. I want to move forward from this and do better in my next situationship.