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A slightly different take on heartbreak

by jrmiller on February 23, 2014   |  FacebooktwitterTumblr

“Love almost always leads to heartbreak”

“Everyone has at least one great story about love or heartbreak.” This was a recent Twitter post from Six Word Memoirs.

How would that make a 40 year old person feel if she never experienced real love?

And what if a person suffers from heartbreak, not because a relationship ends, but because a relationship never began? Can the absence of love cause the most devastating of heartbreaks?

How can a person go through life without experiencing love? Perhaps she blamed it on bad luck. She just didn’t like the guys who were interested in her and the guys whom she adored showed no interest. She thought she was a good enough catch and she convinced herself that she didn’t want to settle. After all, she was attractive enough. Sometimes, she was even above-average, depending on humidity and lighting. Her close-knit group of male friends seemed to indicate that she was pretty awesome. So if they thought highly of her, it was just bad luck that prevented her from ever having a relationship, right? She just never crossed paths with the right person. Or maybe she found excuses. Most high school boys were too nerdy. Most college guys were too immature. And more often than not, they were too drunk. Picking up a guy in a bar post-college just seemed scary and reckless.

Or, maybe her subconscious fear of opening herself up to another kept her from entering relationships and experiencing love? Did this fear of getting hurt cripple her? When her 5th grade crush asked her to the end-of-the-year dance, why did she hide in the gymnasium bathroom for the entirety of the event? Was that the first clue that this girl would never allow herself to have a boyfriend?

When she was in her mid-20s, she began dating someone. She told herself that it was time, even though she wasn’t completely invested in the union. This man called when he said he was going to call. That was enough for her. Not the highest of benchmarks, sure, but the guy passed this litmus test of low-standards. The relationship was comfortable and moved along at a steady pace. Even though her track record would suggest otherwise, she was never comfortable with being alone and she wanted to have a companion. After two years, he proposed marriage. A great sense of relief took the place of what movies have implied should have been tears of joy.

Little did she know that this marriage would lead to the ultimate heartbreak. While her marriage was still intact, her thoughts became consumed with what she never was able to experience. Passion, desire, trust, intimacy, and true happiness – these are things that had eluded her and this became her obsession.

After getting married, there were occasions where she came into contact with what she was longing. A flirtation with a co-worker. An intense connection with a seat-mate on a train. A dirty email correspondence with someone who is a smidge more than just friend.

Why couldn’t she have experienced these exciting encounters when she was single? Perhaps it was the safety net of marriage that afforded her the comfort that allowed these flirtations to occur? Instead of giving her pleasure, these extracurricular activities only magnified what had been absent in her life. These flirtations showed her the potential of what true love could offer.

She was hooked. And it was too late.

She never got to experience true love.

This led to her ultimate heartbreak.


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