21 December 2008

The Bigger Question

The question is always Why?

did it end?

couldn't we make it work?

Or, if you are dealing with someone else's breakup, Why do you keep putting yourself in a position where you know you'll leave hurt?!

Case in point: A few weeks ago, my friend, "Amy", emailed me concerned she was being too hard on her friend, "Sally", who was sending Amy play-by-play messages of Sally's dramatic drag-out of a goodbye. Sally messaged Amy that she just left the guy's house in tears and knew she was an idiot for going over there but couldn't help herself because she thinks she's in love. Amy was worried that she might have been too harsh when she corrected Sally, telling her that that she was not an idiot but clearly an emotional masochist and needed to stay away from him. Amy emailed me, wanting to know what I thought of Sally's situation.

I simply wrote: She might be in love, but he's certainly not.

Was that harsh?

The bigger question is: Does it matter if one person is in love if the other doesn't reciprocate those feelings?

Really. What could be more painful? So, should one indulge or encourage those unrequited emotions? My vote would be no. I think it would it be wiser and ultimately kinder to discourage those feelings until they fade away.

I know that must sound terribly cold. After all, she's in love. But, she is in love alone. And all the love she might feel isn't making him love her back. It's only causing her pain. We've all been there, and we all know better.

Look, you can't will someone to love you. Trust me. If that were the case I would be fighting off Clooney and Pitt. And no matter how good it was or what wonderful chemistry you might have had, when you keep crying, it might be a clue that it's time to GOH. There isn't a behavior or trick or a certain amount of effort you have to employ to make a man love you. Yet, some of us still try thinking that one more conversation will change things. One more kiss. One more time in the sack. Usually, that leads to more tears rather than true love.

What do you do if you are dragged into a friend's breakup drama? Well, sometimes, in order to be a good friend, you need to just listen. Be the shoulder and the ears. However, if she keeps walking down Hearbreak Alley, you might need to be a little harsh and let her know that she's the one causing her own pain. And she can be strong enough to stop it. Then, if she's still speaking to you, take her out for a great big martini, give her your shoulder and just listen again. This time, she might start to sound like her old self.