Jake* and I had an on-again, off-again relationship that lasted for almost five years. Breaking up became such a regular occurrence that we were conditioned to expect one every three to four months. Ultimately, we rewarded our “healthy” and “stable” relationship, by moving in together—a decision that would later prove to be one of the two biggest mistakes I made in 2017.
Once my lease ended, I got rid of all of my furniture and independence to move into Jake’s* two-bedroom apartment. I was so excited and happy. At first, everything was amazing and living under one roof seemed to be the answer to all of our problems. However, that was short lived and my branded form of crazy started to question everything. Jake* cheated on me in the beginning of our relationship, which left me with perpetual doubt on his ability to remain monogamous. Little things began to bother me that I couldn’t explain. However, it was his phone behaviors that became the biggest divide in our relationship and what ended up being the catalyst to our breakup. I was 100% convinced Jake* was being unfaithful again, there were things I found out that I kept to myself just to avoid arguments. Things progressively became strained in our relationship and we started to have talks about either breaking up or going to therapy. Jake* frowned upon therapy but I knew in my heart it would’ve done wonders for us.
The breaking point came when Jake decided to go to Mexico City without me—a trip we were originally supposed to take together. I was devastated. I was convinced he was going to meet up with someone else. The day Jake* left, I was angry and hurt. He knew I was itching to take a vacation and we hadn’t been able to do so prior because of his school commitments. Jake* had a great way of ignoring my emotional/security needs because to him, I was always the bad guy. I was always this difficult person that treated him like shit. No one had ever made me doubt myself as much as he. He shredded my soul and I was slowly becoming a woman with no spirit or joie de vivre.
There I was in the spare bedroom, watching mindless tv while he was posting pics every moment of his trip. Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned became my truth. For the week Jake* was gone, I occupied some of my time with Aaron* a bartender from our neighborhood bar. At the time I had no remorse because Aaron* saw me in the way Jake* used to—sweet, funny and full of life. I felt beautiful on the inside and lovable. Aaron* and I had an emotional affair. We were two souls suffering from deep emotional pain. Me because of my failing relationship with a man who could no longer see the good in me and him because of a recent breakup and a rough childhood that often left him suicidal. We hadn’t engaged in any sexual activity but our last night together I became extremely amorous.
The day before Jake* was due to come home, I was ridden with guilt. I felt awful. I was so lost and so disconnected with reality. Aaron* was developing feelings for me and I betrayed the man I so much wanted to be a Queen for. This was also my second biggest mistake of the year.
Everyone was excited about the solar eclipse yet I kept feeling like something tragic was going to happen. I left work early once Jake* called to let me know he was home. My heart pounded the entire walk from the train station to our apartment but I just figured it was unsettled nerves. The minute I walked in, I knew my horrible little secret was no longer a secret or little. Jake* broke up with me immediately and that was the end to my life, as I knew it.
*Name has been changed to protect the privacy of the individual.