Confessions of a Heartless Lover

The Diagnosis – Before I go any further, some personal secrets must be brought to light. Both for clarity, and sanity.

Like everyone, I have suffered from my own personal and psychological issues, as is evident from these writings. I was deemed a risk my senior year in high school. I was told by my family to either seek psychological help, or it would be forced upon me. So I opted to seek counseling with a therapist. Due to the severity of my situation I visited a therapist twice a week for two months until a diagnosis was reached and a therapy schedule was created for me. I was diagnosed with severe major depressive disorder and bipolar II disorder. I was taking heavy medications that severely inhibited my mental capacity. Three months in I turned 18 and my biological father’s insurance dropped me, so no more therapy. After 6 months and several medicinal changes I was unsatisfied with how the medication made me feel and stopped taking it.

I became heavily burdened by my depression and my thoughts rapidly turned suicidal by the time I met Julie. Shortly after she broke up with me and began abusing me I acted on my suicidal thoughts. I overdosed on my depression medication that I never got rid of; mouthfuls and mouthfuls of medication I downed whilst writing my death note. Once I became too unwell to write I fell to the floor and began hurling. I puked and puked until I was dry heaving. I kept 3 quarts of water in my room of which I drank and continued to vomit until I was dry heaving once more. The immense pain I felt in my stomach combined with my heavily altered state of mind awoke my primal side and I feared death. I left my room and sought out others in the hallway, confessed I had overdosed and asked for help. Within an hour I was in the ICU being treated.

Whilst my memory feels seamless, it doesn’t match reality. I only recall my moments of clarity, but I was largely unresponsive for 48 hours, in a coma that I awakened from briefly several times. When I was finally able to leave the ICU I couldn’t stand. I was voluntarily admitted to the hospital’s psyche ward in a wheelchair. I spent a week in group isolation, with one hour daily for visitation. That week may as well have been a lifetime. The lack of activities and entertainment left me mind-numbingly bored. Only a few of the people present were cognizant and capable of holding a conversation, but only before they received their pills as everyone seemed to be wildly over-medicated. I was seen by two doctors, and the first one I was warned about and was my first real interaction with the negative side of the medicinal industry.

A part of me will always remember when I first entered that small office to see him. He was somewhat polite yet came off apathetic. Quickly after we started, you could hear someone being admitted whilst he looked over my file that wasn’t very happy to be there. You could hear her scream that they “couldn’t keep us locked up here like dogs”, and that “she wasn’t fucking crazy”. As soon as she said the latter, the doctor stopped and scoffed. He looked up from my file, stared directly at me, and whilst smiling said “Well you’re in here, so maybe you are fucking crazy.”, before going back to reading my file. I’m all for a little humor, but given my circumstance, that’s not something I wanted to hear from someone who was ultimately in charge of determining if I left the psyche ward or not.

Whilst most everyone had something negative to say about this man, other than the really off-putting comment I never had any other issues with him. I don’t know if it was because he knew I was a college student and played it safe, or if it was because I identified ‘the game’ and played it accordingly. But I met him twice and the other doctor once before I received the all clear. I was released with instructions to go to counseling at a nearby clinic, one that happened to be owned by the first doctor (abuse of office no doubt). I went to this counselor once, and in the initial meeting I was deeply unsatisfied with what goals she laid out for me, and with the frequency, or lack thereof, of meetings. I never returned. Instead I spent several days at home, coming to terms with the fact that my family would never look at me the same, and how much my actions could affect others, and the startling ways that people can cope.

Whilst all of this took place I was still recovering from my overdose, my stomach had lost a significant portion of its lining, and I was still in a state of euphoria caused by the medication I overdosed on. As this began to subside I determined that if I truly wanted to get better, only I would be able to help, no medication or therapist was going to convince me to love myself, I had to do that on my own. It was by far the hardest thing I’ve ever done but I either changed or learned to embrace all of the things I didn’t like about myself, and it worked. The suicidal thoughts have never returned, and I’ve been both drug and depressive/manic episode free since.

Confessions of a Heartless Lover

Confessions of a Heartless Lover

Emily – You were nothing I ever wanted, yet everything I needed you to be.

Two years. It took two years before I started to entertain the idea of possibly becoming intimate again. The hand dealt me by fate was a cruel one for sure, but if I had Nhu-Thao in my cards, then all roughs could have diamonds. I had never done any serious dating before, and had never dabbled in online dating, but I was willing to give it a chance considering I wasn’t ready or willing to go drastically out of my way to look for anyone. Eventually I found OKCupid, I was perplexed by the idea of answering questions and receiving a match percentage on which to judge others by, a relatively quick way to determine compatibility, and allowed me to skip all of the unknown. I also found how the scores changed over time as I answered more questions entertaining, so it stuck.

After 6 months I had answered over 1,000 questions. It had basically become a game to me and I learned over time that anyone that scored below a 90% or answered less than 20-30 questions wasn’t worth my time. So for 6 months I watched people come and go, watched scores rise and fall below my threshold, and talked to handfuls of people only to find out that this method found friends much easier than a partner.

Then you appeared.

You had my immediate attention when I first saw your profile. Nobody in my area had come close to the amount of questions I had answered. But you were already at the high end of that average. You were on the cusp of my bar, sitting at 89%. Enough to get my attention but not enough for my action. Yet merely a week later you were at the top of my list with a 97% at over 900 questions answered. I spent hours pouring over your answers, reading why you chose what, and read your profile countless times before I finally sent you a message.

It was perfect, like meeting my female counterpart. We were almost exact replicas in how we thought about the world around us, and where we differed was minute, essentially not worth mentioning, in almost every case. I had found someone that was looking for their perfect match, that wanted to find them just as much, if not more-so than me. But in my haste I didn’t see or think about what exactly finding someone so quickly, or otherwise so deeply motivated would actually mean. Not until it was far too late.

The night we first met I learned you were a liar. You hid an alarmingly severe medical condition from me, and the idea that you were worried I would judge you because of such offended me. You also lied about your personal character. I had never stolen before I met you, but you coerced me into sneaking into a movie theater with you. I told you I didn’t want to do it, how uncomfortable it made me feel, yet I wasn’t going to walk the 5 miles on the side of the highway back to my car either. Then you took me to your house because you had to pick up some medication, yet you brought me there with the intention of me not leaving. I told you I wasn’t okay spending the night with you when I had just met you, and that I wasn’t going to enter your parents home without their knowing. Yet you didn’t give me a choice. I was 15 miles from my car by then with no clue as to where I was, and too embarrassed to call the cops and tell them I’d been kidnapped by a barely legal teenager.

So you held me hostage all night, and all of the next day, I told you countless times that I needed to get back to my dorm room, that I wanted to go back to my car. But you didn’t care about what I wanted. You cooked me breakfast, and lunch whilst trying to keep me entertained when all I could think about is when you were going to let me leave. Then you told me that you were going to have me forcibly meet your parents that night for dinner. I decided that they could be my out if need be.

You told me you didn’t get along with your father. What you didn’t tell me was that you refused to be in the same room as him. Do you have any idea how awkward it was to have you leave me alone with your parents when I first met them? I ate dinner alone with your parents, and neither of them could get you to leave your room. Only when I asked your father to drive me to my car did you leave. You begged your dad not to take me. Your parents buckled under your pressure and “asked” me to stay the night, but yet again the choice was stay or walk. I desperately wanted to leave, but I still wasn’t willing to walk 15 miles into town from unlit country roads with no idea where I was, and I still couldn’t bear the idea of calling the police with your own parents home or beg one of their neighbors for help. I was still effectively kidnapped.

That night your parents prepared the guest room. My one silver-lining was that I could lock you out. Unfortunately for me, it didn’t stop you. The doors had a hex-key to unlock them from the outside, a hex-key you had, and used, to enter the room when I refused to let you in. You laid down beside me and asked me to come back to your room, and to have sex with you. I refused both, yet you still refused to leave me alone. You spent yet another night next to me when I wanted nothing to do with you.

Sunday came and your parents prepared us breakfast. You refused to join us because your father was present so I ate breakfast with them alone. I used this time to ask your father again to take me to my car. He agreed but you were still having none of it. I finally broke when you tried to stop me from leaving again. I told you and your parents that I was going to leave, whether I was walking or being drove was their choice to make. Your father finally caught on and ended up driving me to my car. I’m thankful it was him and not your mother as you would have then tried to come with us. But I had finally gotten away.

Our first date lasted 3 days. In those three days I knew enough about you to know how grievous a mistake I had made. Yet for reasons largely beyond my comprehension at the time it was not the last time I saw you. In fact, we continued dating for 6 months afterwards.

This is a confession, not a book. So to keep this short and not have to relive every laborious detail I can recount I will hit the highlights of our relationship. If you became anxious regarding me or your own perceived behavior you completely shut down and ruined whatever was going on around you, countless times. When I tried to reach you with sympathy you didn’t want you retaliated angrily and refused to own your actions until your mother told you in front of us that you were the problem. When I first attempted to leave you you broke into my dorm room and refused to leave from in front of my door and slid page after page of apologetic notes underneath it until I gave you attention. I helped your parents move out of their house and you later accused me of stealing from them when I did this. You lied to me about taking birth control, and refused to let me have any part in the planning, the abortion, or the resulting medical issues; instead after you refused any and all help/aid from me you held it against me and used it to try and extort me and then my family when I refused to give you money for what happened next. You guilt-tripped me into agreeing to go with you on a vacation for my birthday that I didn’t want to take with you, only to fall asleep at the wheel enough times that I refused to let you drive. Then when I got into an accident you took the insurance check, bought a much more expensive car, and then threatened to sue me for the difference. After I called both your bluffs and I reached your deadline for giving you money you printed flyers with my name, my picture, where I lived, what car I drove, my phone number, my school email, and even my parents address and phone numbers. You defamed me with everything listed above calling for people to antagonize me and left these flyers in my dormitory, my workplace, across other areas of my campus, and then created a fake Facebook account and distributed the same flyers to every single person on my friends list.

It wasn’t until I threatened to press charges, and filed a police report that you finally went away for good. I had nightmares for months that you would never leave me alone, that you would start stalking me, or try and kill me, or I’d get served papers for a court summons or the police would come and arrest me on rape charges. So many sleepless nights I spent with you, and trying to forget you. Everyone that knows about our relationship asked the same question over and over. Why the fuck did I stay with you?

I thought about an answer to that question for a long time, I didn’t know if it was out of pity, out of some self-righteous feeling, or thought that if I quit I was admitting defeat. But eventually I settled on the truth. Despite everything you put me through, I stayed with you for so long because I felt I deserved you.

Unlike everyone before you, you took nothing from me. I lost everything when I gave up Nhu-Thao. Instead, you gave me the only thing I felt I deserved. Punishment.

Confessions of a Heartless Lover

Confessions of a Heartless Lover

Nhu-Thao – You were my rock, you grounded me when no-one else could, until I drowned in the nightmare of my own creation.

Despite only taking up 9 months of my life, my time with Julie made college feel more like 40 years instead of 4. Yet the crux of my realization that I was worth more than what I could offer her didn’t come from within, it came from you. “You find someone when you least expect it.”, a perfect proverb for how I met you. A stranger from a land on the other end of the globe I met through a mobile phone game. Yet you were not only there for me when I didn’t want to be alone, you were there for everything else too.

I greatly admired you. Your inner-strength was nothing short of captivating. Your willingness to trust in me and your patience whilst I tried to battle my own demons and overcome the pestilence cast upon me by Julie forged a bond between us I thought was nigh unbreakable. I eagerly awaited nightfall when you would wake up so I could text you. I’ll never forget the first time I heard your voice. I paid hundreds of dollars for those precious minutes, and they were worth every dime.

Your unwavering loyalty and trust kindled the same within me, I learned to speak and act not with doubt, but with conviction. I began to look at the past as a series of events to learn from, instead of mistakes to dwell on. If you ever faltered I became your rock, because your time and energy was something I deeply treasured. Because of you I had a reason to wake up through the times I didn’t want to, and drove me to dare dream of the days when I could hear you, see you, and touch you as the first and last thing I did every day.

But I couldn’t fool you.

For months I poured my affection and emotions onto you, trying to convince you that even though I couldn’t be with you physically, that what we had was enough. But you knew this wasn’t the truth, which I now believe is why you were so cautious about what you said to me and how you said it. It lasted only a fleeting moment, but I was unfaithful to you. You recognized the change as quickly as I did, and I respected you too much to hide what I had done from you. Despite you telling me I did nothing wrong, that there was nothing between us I know that wasn’t true. I’m not certain of many things in this world, but what I felt for you at that moment was mutual, I believe this down to the very core of my being.

My confession was to both of you. She asked me to stay and I said no. I knew I deserved neither of you, I told you this much. But she was born out of a selfish craving for physical intimacy that I knew you couldn’t satisfy. I lacked true conviction, and my weakness insulted you. I’m sorry. Despite what I felt I deserved, you stayed. You claimed that nothing was broken between us because there was nothing to break. Perhaps you believed this early on, but I believed you were giving me a second chance and I didn’t want to let you down again.

Yet that’s all I ever did.

As we learned more about each other you became more open to the idea of what a relationship between us could really be, and I strove hard to prove to both of us that you were worth that much. For months I pushed the limits of what I thought I could do to impress you and prove that not only were you someone worth fighting for, but I was someone who was worthy of you. But that was never to be. We shared many great times, and had our fair share of bad times. They were all born from me.

I never confessed to you how hard I was on myself, or how much my betrayal weighed me down. But I think you knew this much already, and you hated that I let it hold me back. That was always the cause wasn’t it? I had changed, I wasn’t fighting for you anymore. Did I stop thinking you were worth it? Why did I keep running from you? Why did I keep hurting you over and over again?

Because I was ashamed. My lack of conviction had become a stone in the very seat of my soul that stood between me and you. Like a foul blemish it taunted me every moment I thought of you. You were still my first and final thoughts every day, but it was telling me I didn’t deserve to hear you, that you would recoil from my gaze, and that I would never touch you. I couldn’t move past it, and every time I failed it only grew, and as it grew I got further and further away and there was nothing you could do to stop it, you could only slow it down. I don’t know how it felt from your end, but every moment I felt this revelation was agony for me.

Attempt after attempt I tried and tried to get past my lack of self-worth, the feeling that you deserved so much more than I could ever offer. I fought so long and so hard for you to think of me as the person that would be your rock, as you were mine, forever. Yet the more you asked, begged me to be just that, the more I crumbled away.

The one thing I hated more than my inability to be what I needed to be for us, was how much I hurt you. Just how much were you willing to hurt to give me a chance to make things right? I couldn’t take it anymore, I was driving myself back into that dark corner I swore I’d never go back to, the one you worked so hard to help me climb out of. I don’t know how long the water was above my head as I clung to you. But I do know what I lost when I finally let go.

“If you love someone, let them go.”. That’s the proverb I chanted to myself in the days building up to when I left you. I built up in my mind that I would never be able to stop hurting you and feared my downward spiral would ultimately end in me hurting you in the worst way possible, so I convinced myself that the only way I could show you how much I love you was to selflessly let you go and find love again.

The moment I let you go, when my hands left my rock; I’ll never forget, and words will never be able to describe what I felt. Because I didn’t feel at all. There is only emptiness around me now. That’s all I have left.

Confessions of a Heartless Lover