An Open Letter To My Ex: How A Best Friend Becomes A Stranger
Sometimes breaking up isn’t too difficult. Sometimes you know the person is entirely wrong for you. You know that it would never work because you never achieved that level of intimacy necessary to build a lasting relationship. You never became best friends.
Then there are times when breaking up is the most difficult thing in the world, not just because you know that you are breaking your lover’s heart – and your own while you’re at it – but because you are willfully choosing to lose your best friend.
There is nothing worse than choosing to let go and move on when you know that your best friend will never be more than just that, a best friend. It’s a very difficult phenomenon to describe, which is why most go with the all-time favorite cliché: “I love you, but I’m not in love with you.”
The truth is, that is the best way to describe it: You love someone deeply and feel that you ought to be part of each others’ lives, but not in the capacity that you have been thus far.
Unfortunately, not everyone can break up and stay friends. In fact, I’d say most couldn’t. That is why we lose our best friends. We lose the people who are most important to us and, let’s be honest, end up lost for a good moment afterwards ourselves.
With time, however, we learn to pick up the pieces and redefine our direction in life. Yet, not all of us completely move on. Some of us still hold on to that friendship even though it is long gone. Why? We do love them.
We wish they could be part of our lives. But at the same time we understand that is impossible. So what else is there to do than to write them a letter we’ll never send?
Hey there, stranger.
It’s been a very long time, which I’m sure you’re aware of. I’d like to say that it was your decision alone to keep this distance, but I think we both know it was for the best. I’d like to say that I’m glad you are well, but as we both know I have absolutely no idea how you are.
The one thing that can definitely be said is that when we cut ties, we leave no strand behind, but slice right through until we no longer remember how to find each other. It’s amazing to think that once we were inseparable, the best of friends.
You knew me inside and out, and I, you. We were there for each other in the best of times and through the most difficult of times. We definitely managed to put each other through hell on occasion, but when support was needed the most, support was given. Until, of course, that final day.
I sometimes find myself wondering why we couldn’t stay in touch. Would it be so bad if we got together for coffee from time to time? Or if we gave each other a ring to see how the other was doing?
Using the phone to make calls has become archaic, but surely we could send a text to wish each other a happy birthday? Or a happy New Year? I mean, we’ve been through so much. You are a part of my life and there is nothing I can do to ever change that.
You can’t be forgotten because forgetting you would be like forgetting myself -- impossible. But then again, maybe you are right. Maybe we are better off as far apart as possible.
We know we aren’t right for each other. We know it would never work, and we know the friendship we have -- we had -- created a bond that would make slipping back into romance too easy.
It would make repeating the same mistakes too likely, repeating the same heartbreak certain. That’s what it really comes down to: It’s not my heart that I’m worried about, but yours. Breaking my own heart would be my responsibility to bear, but I can’t once again be responsible for breaking yours.
So all that I can do is wish you the best. Wish you a great, bright, loving future. Wish you to find the lover of your dreams and to create a lifetime of your fantasies.
I wish for you to find a friend as great as me, but a much better partner. One who won’t drag you through the mud. One who you won’t feel the need to bury with guilt.
I wish you all the best and although you will never read this, although we will never speak to each other again, and although you are out of my life forever, I wish you nothing short of happiness.
Never again to be yours,
Your Lost Best Friend