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Dating, Triggers, and Exes: Or, It Happened Last Night

Let me regale a tale to you all of my night last night. Things with LF are going great so far! He met my parents on Sunday. My Mom baked us a cake! Last night was rather innocuous. I had work, and then planned on going over LF's house to spend the night before heading out to class the next morning. (TW: Self-harm, abandonment, infidelity below)

All is well until I receive this text.

"Hey, just a heads up. I'm fixing (insert his ex-girlfriend's name)'s computer. Jut wanted to let you know so you don't worry or anything."

I retort by sending the Anne Boleyn gif that is prominently displayed at the top of this post.

This ex has been inserting herself uncomfortably in our relationship for a while. They broke up in early December. Since then, she works at not 1, but 2 restaurants in his building currently- including one that is staffed primarily by my friends. New Haven is a small town, and since it's my hometown, I had to very quickly learn how to play nicely when it came to exes. You're going to run into them. I can't go 3 blocks without running into someone either I or Littlefinger has bumped uglies with. It's just the name of the game, and you have to be a grownup about it. LF's ex isn't from New Haven, so maybe she underestimated how common this occurrence is.

Littlefinger iterates that although I may not trust her, (I don't) that I can trust him. (I do). I simply respond, verbatim:

"I do trust you, sweetling. But I do not believe that this is a trip without ulterior motives for her."

I go onto explain how this makes me uncomfortable. LF invites a mutual friend to be with them, and meets her at a pub where he knows my friends are (or are they my little birds?) to ease my fears. LF was under the impression that they're just friends now, and that she's moved on.

That isn't the case. She had a complete sobbing meltdown in the bar, because LF was laughing at my texts (something to do with me making him happy, and her not being able to do that), and was downing shots and sobbing openly. LF and his friend herd her to LF's apartment, as she was causing a scene in public, and LF's friend needed to change for a date. They walk into the apartment, and she makes a beeline towards the bathroom, sees my toothbrush, and immediately begins caterwauling about how I make LF happy once more.

I get a text from LF indicating that. And I am triggered. I have serious abandonment issues, and I've never been the sole champion of someone's heart. My partners have often been unfaithful to me, so my past trauma makes situations like this very, very, hard for me. The most traumatic incident with regards to this in my life had to be when I woke up to an email from an ex-boyfriend, saying that he was on a plane to California to visit his former coworker, that he was cheating on me with. I had gotten us tickets to a Celtics game for that day, that I had to give away. That ex and that young lady ended up getting married.


Back to the situation at hand. To top things off, I am out of work. I text LF saying I'm heading to the apartment- it's cold and I smell like french fries, I want to change. LF says that he would not advise that, as his ex is not in a good state emotionally. LF asks me to give him 10 mins.

Old hotfreypie would have self harmed. I used to burn myself, as it was much easier to explain than cuts. "Oh, I burned myself cooking." Instead, I used every tool in my toolbox to not do that. I walk. I listen to The Dubliners (it's Irish season after all). I call my Mom. Because of my mental illness, I sometimes doubt myself if I have a right to feel the way that I do. That being said, I think that I had every right to feel uncomfortable about this, even though I know that this woman isn't a threat to me.

LF texts me, indicating that it's OK for me to come up. His friend and his ex have left the apartment. I wait 10 minutes, to compose myself. Then I head upstairs.

Who do I bump into while leaving?

LF's ex and his friend. Did she force him to wait, to confront me as I entered? Who knows? I say nothing. I keep on moving forward.

I don't have time for basics.

I enter the apartment. Greet LF as normal. Sit down. The first words out of LF's mouth?

"I'm sorry. You were right. I am so sorry that I hurt you."

I explain that although I can recognize that this situation must have been difficult for Littlefinger, and I know that he adores me, it makes me feel uncomfortable.

LF says that he won't be contacting her any longer. I believe him. It's difficult when you're faced with an ex who can't act appropriately. He thought that she was over him, I knew that she wasn't. She texted him several times after that, bemoaning that she's been replaced by a girl that LF barely knows, saying that she is "home" with him, that his apartment is her home, that she doesn't love herself, etc.

LF didn't respond. I hope that his ex gets the help she needs. If you can't love yourself, how in the hell are you going to love anybody else?

I woke up to the dawn peeking into LF's apartment window, his cat on my feet, and me nestled in his arms. Yesterday is behind us. Onward to tomorrow.

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