Shiven and I dated for around eight months before we decided to break up. I was having a hard time dealing with a lot of things apart from our relationship and I did not want to waste my time fighting over petty issues. Initially, he was all for let’s-work-through-it, but after some time he decided to respect my decision. We had been friends before we started dating, so we agreed we were mature enough to remain friends. We both thought it wouldn’t be a big deal, but like most things in life, it was easier said than done.
We would talk to each other over the phone almost everyday. While chatting with him I found myself editing my answers in my head before actually typing them. I did not want to share too much of my personal life with him anymore. Things had changed.
When I went on a date with a new person, I felt guilty, as if I was cheating on Shiven. I hated feeling that way. Of course, I knew I wasn't cheating on him but while I wanted to keep my dating life to myself, I knew that Shiven would be expecting this update from me and this made me resent him.
I felt like this whole idea of going back to being friends was having a negative effect on my mental and emotional state of being. Instead of the fights that distracted me when we were a couple, now it was these disturbing thoughts which were taking up my time. The boundaries of our friendship had blurred and I felt suffocated. When he asked me why I did not tell him about the promotion I got at work, inside my head, I screamed: "Why should I?"
I wanted to move on with my life but the lack of closure hindered me time and again. I truly cared for him and wished him well but this new arrangement post breakup, was becoming more toxic for me by the day. To keep a friendship that was disturbing my mental peace was as wrong as being in a relationship that prevented me from being happy and hence I decided against it.
It was probably a selfish decision but also a very important and difficult one, and I knew I had to make one soon. It was not an easy conversation to have with him. Yet, I gathered my courage and I walked away from it feeling lighter and at ease.
*Names changed to protect privacy.
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