There is nothing worse than the sheer agony of running into an ex.
I would literally rather take a bullet to the face (okay, not the face, but at least maybe have a bullet graze my shin or something) than have that awkward moment of locking eyes with someone I used to date, sleep with, say good morning to and split appetizers with. Uma Thurman once said, “I still love the people I’ve loved, even if I cross the street to avoid them.” I not only want to cross the street, but rather sprint into oncoming traffic. I avoid confrontation like the plague. I’d rather blissfully go through life pretending that everything is great and every guy I’ve ever dated or kissed or brunched with has moved to Minnesota. And has amnesia.
The exact moment that you recognize each other is just absolutely awful. You see this person and for a split second you are reminded that at one point, you were this:
There are three scenarios in which you run into an ex. The first is when you suddenly resemble a supermodel and you are hand-in-hand with your new, upgrade of a boyfriend, who constantly battles with the fact that he is too good looking and too successful. This rarely ever happens so don’t hope that you’ll be this lucky. The second scenario is much worse. You are alone, a solid 10 pounds heavier than when you broke up, and for some odd reason you chose that day to wear sweatpants and forget what mascara is. You see him and he’s not only walking with someone that strongly resembles Kate Upton, but he was just promoted to CEO of something really important, like Google. You small talk, try to hate his new girlfriend and her shiny hair, but you can’t because she is so nice, and as your self-esteem nosedives, you wonder why you ever left the house that day. The final scenario, which you can only hope for, is when you run into an ex when you are both with friends, in a crowded place that doesn’t allow for much conversation. You see each other, you both look exactly like you remembered only slightly more put together, and you have the requisite “how have you been?” conversation. You move on and realize that seeing someone clothed that you used to see naked really isn’t all that bad.
Regardless of how your ex run-in goes, the important thing to keep in mind is that things didn’t work out for a reason. Even if he is suddenly much better looking and has a ridiculously hot new girlfriend, he still has all those bad habits you hated. He still does that weird thing in bed, never clips his toenails, is incredible clingy and chews with his mouth open. The great thing is now, the poor man’s Kate Upton is dealing with that while you are happily parading through life. Things didn’t work out and that’s fine. You two have to live in the same city and that’s okay. You are going to see each other occasionally and it might be a little awkward but it’s better than being stuck in a relationship with someone that makes you miserable. So next time you see an ex, smile, be nice and hope that they are just as happy as you are now. Everyone deserves a happy ending, even that shithead that forgot your birthday or dumped you via text on your anniversary.
- Suzie Robb