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October 11, 2021

It isn’t always about what they Did—It’s about what they Didn’t Do.


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We were together for years. I thought he was my forever. I expected it to last.

When he walked out, I slammed the front door and never looked back. I was already over him before his feet reached the driveway.

I spent years hiding how I felt, covering up my tears.

After it ended, my friends wanted to know what happened. They needed to know what went wrong. But I didn’t want to talk about it.

No one needed to know what he did to me. I didn’t feel the need to explain myself. I know what happened; I know what he did.

If there is nothing nice to say, we shouldn’t say anything at all. So I didn’t tell them what he did, but I did tell them what he didn’t do.

He didn’t hold me close. Relationships cannot function without emotional intimacy. A healthy relationship requires it. Without emotional intimacy, the physical aspect will be lacking.

If there is no sexual connection, there are just two people existing in the same space. Relationships require kiss, touch, connection, communication, and so many other functions that set them apart from the other relationships in our lives.

I had a greater feeling of loneliness within the relationship. It’s laying in bed beside someone and feeling f*cking lonely.

He didn’t show me love.

Everyone is responsible for their own mental state within a relationship. I didn’t need him to feel loved. I already loved myself. But there needs to be something out of the norm to show there is a loving relationship there.

It’s the sweet little things that show the other person they are loved and cherished. To show them that they matter. Picking up flowers for no special reason. Remembering to get milk on the way home from work. Washing the car on a Sunday morning.

It’s those million little things that show someone cares about them. But I didn’t feel loved. He didn’t put me first.

Self-love is one thing. Each person needs to put themselves first or we’d lose ourselves along the way. But being involved in a relationship, a partner should put us above every other thing. My needs, feelings, and well-being should matter somewhere in the mix.

It felt like I didn’t matter. He hated to stay home.

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People usually gravitate toward what makes them happy. If he is choosing to spend all his free time with other people or things besides me, he isn’t happy. Why else would he not want to spend time with me?

Love is when someone is choosing to stay when they could go anywhere else in the world. Being with them is home.

It felt like I wasn’t enough. He never kept promises. It’s all those thousands of tiny broken promises, including the promise to fix the sink. It’s following through on intentions. It’s having a reliable person to lean on through the simple everyday life.

It’s being by their side on the downright sh*tty days. But it was a constant feeling of being disappointed. He didn’t treat me well. There was no respect. I felt like nothing to him on most days. There was no time spent together. No attention to me at all. No surprises to brighten my day. He never spent time with me doing the things I was interested in. And when plans were made, I wasn’t included.

I’ll never tell them what he put me through. I had my reasons why it ended, and I’m sure he had his.

All I know is, it wasn’t what he did that ended us—it was what he didn’t do.

I haven’t found the right one yet. But I’ll know when I do find him.

He is going to hold me close.

He is going to love me.

He will put me first.

He will stay home.

He won’t break promises.

He will treat me right.

And I’ll most definitely know that it’s him because he’ll know what to do.


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author: Sharon A. DeNofa

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