A timely example

Yesterday, I claimed confidently that it’s common for people to remain indifferently in pleasant-but-directionless relationships for years, only to break up and marry the next person they meet. And as substantiation, I offered…..When Harry Met Sally and 500 Days of Summer.  Solid examples, I’d maintain, but fictional ones.  So, how convenient that this morning, Carolyn Hax’s column provides a real life scenario!

Dear Carolyn:

Please help me come to terms with the fact that, less than one year after breaking up with me because I wanted to get married and he didn’t, my ex is now engaged to someone else. He had spent four years telling me how firmly anti-marriage he was. The worst part is that the fiancee is really insufferable.


Really? That sounds like the best part.

Think of the possibilities the fiancee’s awfulness allows:

It could mean your ex was looking for someone (presumably) very different from you — which would mean your personality wasn’t the problem, his taste in women was.

Or, maybe he’s just as anti-marriage as always, but she is a bully, and she has his principles in a jar somewhere in the back of her medicine cabinet.

It could be, too, that his anti-marriage stance was a test to gauge how much of a pushover you were. Now, I don’t necessarily believe he did that consciously; that would make him a monster. But I do believe that immature people — i.e., those looking to get away with something (vs. be good for the sake of it) — do push their companions to see how compliant they’ll be.

Think about it. Your ex just spent four years enjoying your company while making sure you stayed outside the velvet ropes. He saw that he could, and then did, push you around.

And maybe his now-fiancee, when he tried his no-marriage line on her, said, “Suit yourself, but don’t bother calling me anymore.” Assertiveness could explain why you find her “insufferable” and he finds her attractive.

I am not, I repeat, not endorsing anything like playing hard to get — or “playing” anything — nor do I believe there was anything you should have done differently to snag a proposal: You want a guy who wants you, so your ex wasn’t the guy.

Coming to terms with that hinges on the difference between regretting a mistake, and learning from it. You have nothing to regret here. You did your best with the information you had. The right guy would have loved you for it, and the wrong guy never would (though a decent one wouldn’t have taken advantage, as this one seems to have).

And that’s the lesson to take away here, I think: Don’t try to get close to people who persistently, openly keep you at arm’s length. His present engagement didn’t break the bad news; his past disengagement did.

In short, Sally (of When Harry Met) still says it best: “All this time he said he didn’t want to get married.  But the truth was, he didn’t want to get married to me.”

(And do read Carolyn’s second letter for a happy counterexample from someone feeling pretty good about what’s he’s found)


One response to “A timely example

  1. I want to say thanks to this great man called Dr Idibia who helped me in my marriage life. my name is maria Hasbarger lives in USA memphise so i was married to Albert we both love and like each other before our marriage, he care about my well being so i was so happy that i have found a man like this in my life my parents love him so much because of his kindness towards me and the way he care about me after four years in my marriage, no child he was not showing me much care anymore but i notice something is going on which i no. then i keep on with the relationship and i was hoping one day God will open my way to have a child in my home then i keep on going to church from one play to another by telling all the pastors about my problems that i don’t have a child so many of them promise me that soon i we have a child in my home i keep on hoping in God’s miracle on till one day when i went for a visit in my friend office then i was welcome by my friend we started dis causing about so many things on marriage life i was so shock she ask me about my wedding and what is going on till now i still don’t have a child then i told her my dear sister i don’t no what to do anymore and am scared of loosing my husband who have be caring for me for a long time now then she said i we not loosing him i ask how? then she said there is one man called Dr Idibia who help in a relationship then i keep on asking how about him she told me this man can do all thing and make things possible i never believe her for once that this man she is talking about can do it so fast. also i ask her how do i get his contact she said i should not worry my self then she gave me his contact email ID and his number to contact him i said ok i will try my best to do so she wish me the best of luck in life then i went home gotten home, found that my door is open i was scared thinking so many things i don’t no who is in my house now i look at the key in my hand i was thinking i did not lock my door shortly a word came into my mind that i should go inside and check if there is any body at home or my husband getting inside, i found that my husband move away his things in the house then i started calling his number refuses to pick i was like a mad Dog i cried and cried don’t no what to do then i remember to that a friend of mine gave me a contact today i take my computer i emailed this man called Dr Idibia also i called him on his cell phone which i received from my friend he spoke to me very well and i was happy my husband we come back to me so after the work was well done by Dr Idibia, just in three days i heard my phone ringing not knowing it was my husband telling me his sorry about what he did to me then i accepted him again a month later, i was pregnant for him so i rest my testimony till i deliver safely i we give the best testimony again so my sisters and brothers if you are in such pain kindly contact this great man with this email {greatidibiaspelltemple30@gmail}.com or call +2348103508204

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