Evicerating a heart in a few easy steps.

Step 1:

Believe the words a man tells you; that he loves you, that you are unlike anyone else in his life, that although you aren’t going to be intimate anymore he doesn’t want to lose you in his life. Believe he can’t possibly be so deceitful that he’s letting two women think the same thing when it comes to his love and commitment to them. Justify staying intimate with him by telling yourself she can’t possibly believe he’s romantically in love with her.

Step 2:

After you break up for the final time, spend a fair amount of mental calories debating whether to block him from contacting you. Believe he will be the one to reach out. Think about ways you need to be strong to get through the breakup without reverting. Believe he will be the one that suffers more in your absence, than you in his. (Note: this is perhaps dangerously close to hubris)

Step 3:

As you are washing the lingerie from the last two nights you had together, just one week before, demonstrate a common-yet-unfortunate inability to stop looking at the Instagram account of him and his was-ex-but-not-anymore wife.

Step 4:

See on her Instagram account the first couple selfie of them since 2012: seemingly happy faces pressed together, him wearing a Halloween costume the two of you talked about having sex in, with a “love birds” hash tag and other romantic references.

Step 5:

Feel the cleaving of your heart as things you believed to be true are called into question. Remember vividly your anger is an iceberg. Realize nothing you would say to him that moment will get result in any peace.


36 thoughts on “Evicerating a heart in a few easy steps.

  1. Truly angry on your behalf, however this is the opportunity to look at how and why you came to be here. Hugs if you’d like them x

    • Thank you. I’ve been thinking about this a lot, naturally. I need to write a follow up post – I actually don’t think he did anything wrong, as much as I would love to be morally justified in my anger and hurt in that moment. It really came down to what I told myself she thought, as a justification of continuing with him when I shouldn’t have.

      • I do think he did. But I agree that isn’t where a helpful focus needs to be now. I don’t go down the cheater/victim road things aren’t black and white in my world. I have found it helpful to look at the dynamics of relationships. Where I looked for validation and with whom. I wish you luck Ann. I will raise a glass to a happier future for you tonight

      • Awwwwwwww, fuck.

        Agreed—he did nothing wrong. However, no position of ethical rectitude is needed to legitimize your feeling wounded—that is a true and honest response. (Only the more so because your integrity does not allow for the jerry-building of some shabby, fictive high ground from which to demand and maintain a status of “injured party.” [And, THERE is your moral/ethical measure.] 👑)

  2. So sorry, Ann. My own Tony was many, many years ago. Our break up was abrupt, but the lingering love and connection made us stretch it over many months even while he dated someone else and got her pregnant. For me the final evisceration was him telling me he still loved me right after he told me that he’d married her the day before. It cut me to the core, but I survived. And so will you. Turns out I needed that cut to finally release him and heal. I wish the same for you. xx

  3. It’s hard to just shut feelings/connections down. Time will heal you, just as you have healed other things along the way. You’ve got to find another way to face off the urge to connect with him, no matter how innocuous. Something healthy… something that’s good for YOU.

  4. Oh….. **ouch**. I am so sorry, Ann. Everyone has made their choices now, and its hard practice getting used to lying in those beds. Keep track of the good moments, especially those where you feel that pure relief of no longer pouring your heart and soul into the crazy-making endeavor of making this work. Those moments can be so small – sometimes you are just staring out in the distance and you realize that you are more excited about the space you see rather than sad about how lonely it makes you. In your case, I am glad you have some comforting distraction from the likes of the Boilermaker.

  5. Also those things that you needed to believe, about how this will hurt him more than it will hurt you… don’t dismiss how much they may have helped you get through the first week, even if they aren’t true. The truth is that you will never know who will have a harder time. What you can count on is that Tony will not use this time as an opportunity to do some deep self-reflection of what was lost, why he’s made the choice he’s made, how he might grow from this etc. His energy is manifesting itself in the more external endeavor of making things work with his wife. Don’t dwell on how he’ll pay the spiritual price for not doing his homework now the way that you are, but understand that his energy is going into preserving this formerly broken thing with his wife. Part of that mental gymnastics will require him to, on a conscious level, minimize your importance to him and give his all to what is now before him.

  6. Oh Ann, I’m sorry. It helped me a lot when I just got rid of my social media accounts. I was only hurting myself whenever I looked at it. There is a saying I like: don’t look behind, you are not going there.
    Turn this hurt into your fire to become even more awesome (hard since u r awesome already).

    • I’ve thought about getting off Instagram for that reason, but I could still look at his and her account on the internet. I also enjoy being on there and am determined to just live with the temptation. But if it keeps hurting, I may change my mind.

  7. Being the bigger person when your anger is “justified” whether we know the truth or not is the hardest thing we ever do in a break up but should make closure easier. Hugs here too if you need them.

  8. Tony did something fundamentally wrong Ann : he was not sincere with you, he lied.You bare not an ethical responsibility because you believed in him and,subsequently, you have been deceived and betrayed.Your iceberg anger at him and your frustration are justified.
    Could things have turned the other way round or differently? Yes,they could.You tried as much as you could under the circumstances and to the degree his personality allowed you to.You are not perfect,but even if you were, success is not guaranteed.Neither with Tony nor with anybody else.
    There is no point of crying over spilled milk.In spite of the enormity of your deception, you are to carry on,wounded but wiser and ,hopefully, still a believer in men : not all of them deserve your trust and commitment,though some do.Find one (or more if you must) of those.I am sure you will…

    • I guess I do believe what he told me in my importance to him; I don’t doubt that. And I’m smart enough to know he won’t tell me about the good things with Mary. So I really did choose to focus on how I thought *she* felt… which of course he has a hand in, but he isn’t responsible for what I believe is true about their marriage… does that make sense?

      • Yes, he has been your main source of insight about both the evolving condition of his marriage and his sentiments towards you.Even if he were sincere about the latter, you do not deserve his duplicity and inability to respond to your needs.Lamenting about how things could have been different with him is understandable,but is not going to change the situation on the ground. Please,move on!

        • Yes, you’re right about the duplicity and inability to be what I need. And believe me, I am NOT lamenting, at all. Despite the occasional heart hiccup, I am absolutely moving forward, while looking back to help me understand.

      • I was just going to say something to that effect Ann. about this reinforcing reality. I am sorry though and big HUGS! XOXO

        • There’s a point at which I don’t need any more reminders… in some ways, that’s what happened a few weeks ago when something inside me “broke”. I also suppose going and looking at his or her IG account doesn’t really teach me anything new. And that is also a good thing, because ultimately that’s what will make me stop. And thank you for the big hugs!!!

  9. Bah. Nah.

    I’ve sent several angry texts. I apologize for none of them. I WILL acknowledge when I am angry for something over which he doesnt technically have control… except fuck off he indirectly does.

    This is the price he pays for having been involved with 2 women at once.

    This is the price you pay for having not abruptly ended it.

    I’m not saying you should have ended it earlier (see all my comments about avoiding excessive scar tissue), just acknowledge that this is part of that package.

What do you think?