Somebody That I Used to know

And there I was today. Listening to the radio after my dog training social class this morning on the way home. And a song comes on the radio. Reminding me of a deep, dark feeling I haven’t been able to shake for years. It reminded me of someone I used to know…

My ex boyfriend. The relationship started about 7 years ago. He was… amazing. He was there for me, always. I was there for him, and helped him become a better person. I truly believed we helped each other.  He was… is one of the most selfless people I have ever met in my life. He would do anything to make me happy. And that’s why I ended it.

The feelings I had then – I didn’t know what they were. I had self doubt, hatred, and confusion, but also .. was it love? High school was easy for me. I had a 4.0, and my boyfriend just didn’t. So, I made him my project. I helped him learn the material and better himself academically. He applied himself and really made a difference. His grades came up, and he started enrolling in classes that were above the level of his previous classes. Not to say he wasn’t intelligent – he was… is.  Though, academics and school weren’t important to him then. He really worked hard and graduated with a 4.0, just like I did.

By the time he graduated high school, I was in college. I was taking around 26-30 credit hours any given semester, and focusing on school. My boyfriend took a backseat. Our relationship wasn’t as important as learning all the new material. Eventually, I burned out and needed a distraction. I found a guy at my college who was mediocre in looks, and had a funny personality. So, I thought I wanted to date.

I broke it off with my boyfriend of 3 years. Just like that. Called him up on the phone and said I wanted to see other people. I broke his heart and completely betrayed his trust. I hurt this wonderful person and shattered him into a million pieces. I didn’t realize how much this hurt me until a few weeks later. When I realized the new guy I was dating was a chump. I called my ex-boyfriend and told him my story.

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I didn’t realize what I was doing to him. I was now taking the broken pieces of his mangled heart and throwing them into a blender. Putting all dignity and self-worth he had left into the meat grinder. Even though we had broken up, I felt he was still my best friend and he meant so much to me. Not romantically anymore – I fucked that up. So, out of the sake of our friendship and because I cared so much for this person, I stopped talking to him.

I think a little bit of me died then. I lost not only my best friend and my boyfriend, but a little bit of myself. The blanket of darkness that I had been feeling just closed in a little closer. Hugging me until I couldn’t breathe. I had to stop myself contacting him. I couldn’t do it – because I cared for him so much.

I met my husband in college shortly after this happened. Weeks later, actually. And love began to blossom. I fell in love with this man who stole my heart and helped me forget some of the pain I was feeling. We dated for a few years before actually getting married, and it was wonderful. I love my husband and he is now my best friend.

Though, my ‘person’, if you will, at the time, was my ex. I don’t want him romantically anymore, nor did I when I was dating my husband. But I felt a hole in my heart where his company used to be. It’s never been filled, and it remains dormant and empty. That space cannot be filled by anyone else. I found my ex-boyfriend on Facebook and requested to be friends, which he accepted. We don’t talk – other than ‘Happy Birthdays’.

Recently, I received a strange call while I was training a client’s dog. We were almost finished, and I ignored the call. The number buzzed my phone again. Again, I ignored it. A few minutes go by… and my phone buzzes again. I apologize to my client, and answer the call, my heart beating slightly faster. “Hi Heather… It’s [my ex’s name]…” My heart stopped, and I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t speak. I managed to say hi back, and then silence. It felt like forever. He finally said, “I have something to say, and then I’m going to hang up.” He said that he was sorry. He was sorry for not being there, and for all the mistakes he made. He said he wants me to forgive him. And then he hung up.

Now, because I’m prisoner to my demented thinking process, I immediately thought he was going to try to hurt himself. I couldn’t let that happen! I tried finding his family, calling my mom to find any shred of old family contact information we had. There was nothing I could do. I cried and called my husband and told him what happened. No one could calm me down. I was a tornado, a spiral of out of control feelings.

About 40 minutes later, he calls me back and we …chat. I tell him I’m mad at him for making me worry, and cry on the phone. He said he didn’t mean to scare me, and that he was doing a self-improvement program. One of the things he had to do is close loose-ends. One of those was with me. He wanted to be friends again, and understood if we couldn’t. I don’t feel this happy often. It was like I was at Disneyland! Of course I wanted to be friends!! I was excited to meet his new girlfriend, and he was excited to be reconnected. It was a joyous day and I couldn’t contain my excitement! We discussed setting up a date where we could meet each other’s significant others and have dinner. He ended the call saying he would be in touch in a few days.

A week later, I still hadn’t heard anything, so I texted him. Nothing. A week later…still no answer. So, I logged on Facebook to check to see if he had messaged me or posted on my wall. He had unfriended me. I have been cut off.  This person who marched back into my life after 5 years of no contact. He’s just gone. Again.

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Credit to Chris Works

Now… to deal with the pain, the guilt, and the betrayal. I have come to the conclusion that it’s really over. The relationship, the feelings, the guilt. The friendship is over. As painful as this is, I have to accept it. I don’t know how many people really feel this way about their ex. Someone who was so special, but in a deeper way than just a boyfriend, or just a friend. It was like he was a part of me. That part is dead. That part of my heart will not grow back or be filled, and there is just an empty void left to fill the blackness.  He’s now just somebody I used to know.

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Lyrics (If anyone is interested)

[Gotye:]
Now and then I think of when we were together
Like when you said you felt so happy you could die
Told myself that you were right for me
But felt so lonely in your company
But that was love and it’s an ache I still remember

You can get addicted to a certain kind of sadness
Like resignation to the end, always the end
So when we found that we could not make sense
Well you said that we would still be friends
But I’ll admit that I was glad it was over

But you didn’t have to cut me off
Make out like it never happened and that we were nothing
And I don’t even need your love
But you treat me like a stranger and that feels so rough
No you didn’t have to stoop so low
Have your friends collect your records and then change your number
I guess that I don’t need that though
Now you’re just somebody that I used to know

Now you’re just somebody that I used to know
Now you’re just somebody that I used to know

[Kimbra:]
Now and then I think of all the times you screwed me over
But had me believing it was always something that I’d done
But I don’t wanna live that way
Reading into every word you say
You said that you could let it go
And I wouldn’t catch you hung up on somebody that you used to know

[Gotye:]
But you didn’t have to cut me off
Make out like it never happened and that we were nothing
And I don’t even need your love
But you treat me like a stranger and that feels so rough
No you didn’t have to stoop so low
Have your friends collect your records and then change your number
I guess that I don’t need that though
Now you’re just somebody that I used to know

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18 thoughts on “Somebody That I Used to know

  1. I’ve been in a similar situation where I’ve lost contact with someone I used to be close to. Of course, never as serious and upsetting as it must’ve been for you.
    I hope everything turns out well. I don’t know what else to say, or how else to help you but I genuinely wish you all the best in regards to that matter. Please don’t feel so bummed out about this.

    • Honestly, I’m to the point where I’m just empty now. The void is back, and the feelings are gone. Thank you for reading. I’m sure I’ll feel better about it in the future, it can’t go on forever, right?

      • Exactly! Think positive. You’ve got your whole life ahead of you, and bad thoughts and experiences just weigh you down. It sucks being in that shit place. I’m almost escaping it now, promise me you will too.

  2. I loved that song when it was first introduced to me a little over a year ago… and then a went through a bad break-up wherein I left my partner of two years for someone else… I am glad it happened but it is still so painful to remember. And anyway, after that happened the song blew up and was on the radio every other minute, and it was like a slap in the face every time. I’m not completely at peace with what happened in my last relationship, and now that song makes me cringe.

  3. wow your words touch me – I love how you wrote this, its a feeling most of us can relate to – I always get this feeling when I hear the Gotye song – but you expressed it so very well – thank you for a great post!

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