What the hell do you do with the left over flotsam and jetsam when a relationship ends? Whether it be a longish-term relationship; short-term dating thing; maybe a relationship, but let’s not commit thing; briefly hanging with someone and leaving sth at his or hers thing or they leave stuff at yours.
Sometimes relationships and dating adventures end abruptly. You know that thing when someone breaks up with you via a text message or when they ghost out of your life (or you ghost out of theirs). You’ve spent time at theirs and they’ve spent time at yours. You may have left a pair of earrings on the nightstand or they left their t.v. in your living room (don’t laugh, one guy actually did leave his t.v. behind and his kayak and other random things).
So, anyway – where was I? Oh yeah. What do you do with other people’s stuff when things don’t end so well? It can be a dilemma. Do you drop everything off and risk a confrontation? Do you call/text asking them to collect their stuff, also a confrontation risk.
t.v/kayak guy. That one ended really badly to the point where actually seeing him could have been verging on dangerous. So being a creative type I thought about it, definitely did not want his gear cluttering my garage. Also, did not want to be accused of ‘stealing’ his gear. Solution found – I contacted AirTasker (nope this is not an ad, but they were dang useful!) and I put up an ad along the lines of “tradie required (with ute/pickup truck/van to collect stuff i.e. kayak, t.v. and random crap) and return it to my ex. The kicker is that you (aka tradie) have to call him and let him know you are on your way with his gear.” I had half a dozen guys message me straight up. Chose one who couldn’t stop laughing and said he’d wished he’d thought of that to collect his gear after his last break-up!! Mission accomplished 🙂
Ghoster. He had some of my stuff, a sweater and other random stuff I’d left there. When someone ghosts (actually I’m still not entirely sure who ghosted whom in this case – but whatevs), you can’t just text or call and say “so, give me back my things phantom man!” Because that’s the whole thing with ghosting – you DO NOT contact them, like ever!! I kept him as a FB friend and could see whenever he was online. I didn’t ever message or comment. Five weeks after the ghosting I got home from work one evening and found a box on my front porch. I opened it and found my sweater and other lost items 🙂 Happy days 🙂
Since my second marriage ended some (almost) 10 years ago, I have found myself on and off the dating scene. Sometimes more on and sometimes more off. I regularly talk about dating with my girlfriends in person over a wine or three or online with more distant friends including one of my blogging buddies Maria @adriftinathens
We all date and meet potential partners in different ways, sometimes online dating, sometimes in real life. We’ve all experienced ghosting and other dating horrors in one form or another. And to be honest, I’ve probably ghosted a few after some desultory messaging that seemed to go nowhere and the effort in making some form of ‘it’s over before it’s begun’ message seems a bit redundant.
I once experienced ghosting after dating someone for 3 or 4 months and then nothing. No contact, no text, no call – nada! Sometimes it’s actually difficult to determine who exactly is the ghoster and who the ghostee. In this case I had sent a reply to a text message and then that was it – no further communication. My girlfriend asked if he had perhaps become seriously ill or worse yet died! But no. His little green light on Messenger was regularly on when he was using his phone – so I’m fairly sure he was still hail and hearty.
However, I was not overly emotionally invested in the relationship and I decided to let it go. I think a few years back I would have been more inclined to follow up with a “why?” But now, nah. As Maria always says to me “if a man wants to see you, he will”. And that is absolutely correct. Anyway, I think I miss his dog more than I miss him.
Life journey and fellow travelers
I have discovered over the years that people join me on my life journey for varied lengths of time. Some have been around for years; some for months; some come and go and others are around only for a little while. I recall earlier this year having the most intense and brilliant conversation with a man (over coffee after a Parkrun). He told me he was married, plus he was from a Parkrun far from my local run. I knew as the conversation beautifully unfolded that this was a really special connection and that one hour was the only time in this life that we would connect. He was in my life journey for the briefest snippet and that’s just how it is sometimes.
This attitude also allows me to let go far more easily than once I could (or could not more to the point). If a relationship ends, regardless of whether it’s me letting go or they drifting apart from me, then it’s done. There may be some residual sadness or longing, but it dissipates and fades away. I can acknowledge what was, appreciate the positives and let go of the negative.
Then move on and see where the next adventure leads me ❤