(Sorry in advance for the massively long post).
I made the switch. With Henry.
The black and white thinking. The all or nothing mindset. The loving and the hating.
I am experiencing hate. This is not to say I haven’t made the switch before with Henry, I have, but this time I don’t know that I’ll be switching back.
I think I hurt too much for that.
Last week was a crazy one for me. I had intense mood swings coming out of nowhere (Bipolar?) and emptiness and loneliness to the extreme (Borderline?). To say it was an intense, uncomfortable week is an understatement. I was so happy, and so sad, I had so much energy and I was crying every day too. I would get angry, alone in my house for no reason, everything would just irritate me and I would be cursing out loud. People would message me in this state and I would grow angry with them and everything they said, but instead of taking it out on them I tried to sit with the anger until I wanted to scream and claw at my skin.
I was a mess. There was no way I could concentrate on doing homework like this, crying so hard it hurt, so angry I was shaking, so hyper my mind and body felt sped up. The only things that helped me even a little bit was working through the emotions with Henry and texting my boyfriend, Ben.
Thursday night I wanted to end my life. I didn’t attempt anything because I had people to live for – literally the only thing stopping me due to how much pain and suffering I was in. Friday night I felt terribly, and I thought the cycle would continue on Saturday, but it stopped. Saturday I woke up feeling awful, and the rest of the day I spent sitting alone in emptiness, wanting to disappear. I was only empty the entire day, nothing else. I didn’t want to die. I just didn’t want to live anymore.
When I couldn’t stand it any longer, when I wasn’t even thinking straight or about anything except how to escape the pain, I left my apartment after messaging Henry asking if he could hang out and walked to the nearest LCBO and bought some alcohol.
When I came back, I drank until Henry responded. He said he couldn’t go out because his roommates were controlling his social time until he got his homework done for the semester.
My initial response was to be angry with his roommates for this controlling behaviour. It is behaviour I would never tolerate in a friend, I don’t appreciate being controlled, and Henry remarked that it was “good of them” which just fuelled my fire. My second thought was that if Henry really wanted to hang out with me, he would. I was hurt that since he had seen me and the broken state I had been in some days of the week (I saw him Thursday and was honest about my thoughts of death) that he would turn me down now, when I felt the worst I had been all week. I started to think about how I was always the one messaging him to hang out, and how he told me he felt obligated to be friends with some people because they needed help. I wondered if he only saw me as an obligation, not a friend. I started to fear that he was distancing himself from me, that he was abandoning me, that I had blown it, and then the hurt turned into rage. The Anger Mask (I wrote a post on it). I raged because I couldn’t control my emotional states and my neediness and I raged because I hated that he could walk away when I just had to live with myself.
In my rage, I sent Henry a sarcastic message, “I get the message. Sorry I asked.” As in I understand that he didn’t want to be friends and that I was sorry I even tried reaching out to him. I felt hurt and rejected and I wanted to reject him before he rejected me. I wanted to leave on my own terms.
Henry didn’t understand my message. He told me to never be sorry I ask, but that he did have to do his homework. Impulsively, still hurt, I told him that I didn’t think I could talk to him because I was upset and drinking.
This is where everything went downhill.
Henry asked me if I was okay, and said to let him know and he would come over. My spirits soared – I felt hope. But the fear was still there – the fear that he didn’t actually want to come, that I was an obligation, and the fear drove the anger, and the anger and guilt drove my words. I told him I didn’t know when I would be okay, so not to bother coming over. I told him that maybe I was being selfish and if he needed to work, work. Guilt over making him come to my aid, and fear and anger drove me to push him away. But all I wanted to do was scream “please come now!”
Unfortunately, Henry wasn’t a mind reader, so while he said that I wasn’t selfish, he retracted his offer to come over and said that he should probably work.
Suddenly it occurred to me that I was losing my opportunity, the only one I thought I had left, to feel better. I thought that I was losing my last trusted friend in University. In that moment I didn’t know what I wanted from him, all I knew was that I didn’t want him to leave me. In a desperation, I told him he could bring his work over and I would just sit with his presence in the room and that that was all I needed. I told him I would pay for food. I told him I would give up my bed. I told him everything I could think of to get him to say yes. I even told him I would pay him to come over, and I was serious. I needed him to say yes.
I was too honest, too vulnerable. I told him I wasn’t okay and that him coming over would make my day. Re-reading these messages, I cringe at how open I was and how much I was willing to tell him, to give him. I’m not sure he deserved my honesty after what he did with it.
His only response to my frantic, BPD brain, my desperation, my emptiness, my insides screaming and tears running down my face and my indefinite suffering was
“let me think”
So I stared at my phone, drank, listened to the same song over and over while I waited.
And then, I got a text from Layla (the girl from the “Sore Heart” post) and she said Henry had texted her and that she was coming over.
I was furious. I was beyond furious, actually. I was in the most vulnerable state I could possibly be in, under the influence of alcohol and caught in the intensity of my emptiness, and I was not comfortable handing over my autonomy to Layla, and like I predicted she tried to take it away. In that mortifying, vulnerable state, I only want to be surrounded by people I trust and am comfortable with. I felt betrayed that Henry sent someone to “deal with me” and hurt that he refused to come himself. I felt completely alone, and worse than before I had contacted Henry.
Layla and her roommate came, they messaged Henry on my phone without my permission and talked down to me the entire time they were there. They left when they were satisfied that I could go to bed safely, and I tried to keep a smile plastered to my face so they would leave, but inside I was livid.
Moments before they arrived, I messaged Henry and accused him of shipping me off to someone else because he couldn’t handle me. Henry reacted defensively and asked if that was a fair thing to say. I didn’t care at that moment. I believed it was the truth, and I was hurt and angry.
I was even angrier after Layla and her roommate left when I read what they sent to Henry: “We’re here and we’ll take care of her/Getting food into her now so don’t worry! We’ll let you know how the night goes!” Like I was a child. Like I was something to be dealt with.
After they left, I called Henry over Facebook and he switched it to a video chat and somewhere I started crying and grew silent because I was so overwhelmed with hurt, anger, sadness, and emptiness and didn’t know what to say. Henry said something about needing to go to bed and hung up on me while I was still crying. I felt like I had no dignity left, and no one who could come and make me feel better. I ordered pizza and then went to sleep.
When I woke up I texted Layla (as she requested) to let her know I was awake. She responded. That was that.
Sunday was painful. Emptiness all day. Worse than Saturday, but there was nothing I could do about it. I refused to message Henry first. I already felt like I was a stalking fan and he was the celebrity. I felt like we weren’t friends at all.
Henry finally messaged me around 6:30p.m. and told me he hoped I was okay and to remember to work on my essay. Still emotional, my temper flared. I was angry that he could act like nothing had happened, and that all of my hurt and anger should be forgotten.
I sent him a long text explaining that I was still upset and why, and he wrote back explaining his perspective, not acknowledging that I felt hurt by him but saying things like he was “pretty clear where I wanted to stay” (which REALLY hurt) “You said you felt bad for asking and got the message” and “told you twice.”
I felt like I hadn’t been heard at all, and that Henry didn’t understand the pain I was in, and I didn’t know how to make him see. I also didn’t know how much of the situation was in my head and how much of what I felt was valid.
I was honest and said that I was hurt and confused and needed space. And then Henry’s final text to me was the last straw before I broke down completely alone in my bed.
“I could use some space too, to be honest.”
I felt that in my chest. He might have said a ton of consoling things that night, and he said that he still wanted to be friends, but all I heard was “I’m tired of you and I don’t want you in my life anymore.”
Even right now as I write this my brain is swirling in confusion. Sometimes I feel like I hate Henry for only wanting to be my friend when it suited him and leaving when it got hard. Sometimes I hate myself for being a burden to him and never that fun friend you actually want around.
To be completely honest, I am still very emotional and caught between missing Henry and wishing he actually liked me as a friend to wanting to cut him out of my life for being unable to handle me, and right now I can’t handle people who can’t handle me. Even writing this post has confused me because at parts of it I felt the anger come back and at other parts I just wanted to cry and ask myself what I have done.
I’m hurt and confused and lost. Yesterday was Monday and I saw Layla but she ignored me so I didn’t go to my usual table with my friends. Henry said he wanted space so I didn’t contact him. I spent most of the day sitting alone trying not to cry until I went home and wept in my bed until my eyes hurt.
Okay, I’ll admit it. I miss Henry.
I feel like I lost another person who mattered to me. And I feel like it was my fault, because I was too needy. I hate myself. I wish I could spend my days in bed just sleeping peacefully. I just don’t want to hurt anymore.