When I told my mom about my blog, she was super supportive in terms of the content, I mean lets be real – she had to suffer through all that shit with me. But, as we all know, moms will almost always tell you what they really think. So, on that note, when she asked me whether or not I was going to write this chapter, my response was yes, of course. I would try to make it as humorous as possible just like the other ones. Her response: “Oh Gaby…I don’t think there’s any way to make THIS story funny”.
And she is correct. Grab a Kleenex guys, shit’s about to get real.
I was only 20 when *Jason and I met. Its important to note that once again, I had a boyfriend at the moment we first interacted, but there was a reason it was okay. Basically, Jason and I had gone to Hebrew school together as children. He actually used to tease me but I still maintained a massive crush on him. Our last names both started with the same letter, so he was my buddy to call if I was sick, we had to sit next to each other on the bus, all that good stuff. After I left the school, we obviously lost touch, but I never forget a face.
13 years later, Garrett asked me if I wanted to go to this local rabbi’s house for dinner one night and I said yes in support of his newfound religious beliefs. So we’re eating, everything’s cool, and then I heard the front door open; in walks Jason. I remember thinking that I must have known him, he seemed really familiar. Like I said, I never forget a face so it only took me 10 minutes or so to realize who he was. I didn’t say anything at first, I mean I didn’t want to look like a freak! Oh hey, its that girl you used to tease who openly scribbled your name all over her notebook! Instead, I just listened to him speak, and was mesmerized. I had never been so enthralled by someone before. He had this way about him – charming and witty, but you could tell he hadn’t fully experienced life, he was innocent and sweet and in that moment I’m sure if he asked me to leave with him, I would have gone without a care for Garrett. It seems terrible but it was just one of those things…when I got home later that night, I immediately Facebook stalked him and he responded pretty quickly: “no way! grade three?!”.
From there on, we started to talk a lot. We even got to hang out sometimes since Garrett and Jason had mutual friends. As Garrett’s trip to Israel started to get closer, he could sense that I was kind of into Jason. His name would come out of my mouth so often but I just couldn’t help it. Garrett was super jealous but I assured him Jason and I were just friends. He left, and I kept hanging out with Jason. We’d talk for hours, listen to classical music in his car, sit in parks at night. It was the first time I had simply hung out with a guy I liked without making out or jumping into a relationship. I just loved talking to him – he had such a beautiful mind, he was into science and he was also a musician. He made me laugh like crazy too. We challenged each other in a certain way and he made me feel curious, like I wanted to learn more and do more. At this point after everything I’d been through with guys, I sort of had an idea of what I wanted, and he was it.
The day that Garrett broke up with me, I came home from the water parks and a friend of mine was having a party at his house. I grabbed a bottle of white wine from my parents stash, went to my friends house and downed that thing in about 10 minutes. Then, like all classy drunk girls, I texted Jason to come see me. He was the only person I wanted to be around in that moment. So, 20 minutes later, he pulled up to my friends house in his mom’s van and we left. I don’t even know if anyone noticed I was gone, but I didn’t care. We drove to this house that was being built, they had an empty in ground pool and in the backyard, a bunch of rocks facing a shallow stream of water. We sat there and talked for hours, I told him all about Garrett’s abuse and he comforted me. As a friend, it was the right thing to do, but I knew this was more, for me at least.
For a week or so, Jason and I hung out everyday. I was even introduced to his friends, who immediately took to me, and I them. All I thought about was how perfect we were together, so I started to drop hints to Jason, try to get closer to him when we’d hang out; subtle things. And although it was obvious to everyone that he liked me too, he held off very strongly. This should have been a sign, and thinking back on it now, it makes so much sense. 6 years ago though, I had no idea.
Jason expressed that he didn’t want a girlfriend, that I was on the rebound; he always had excuses. One night though, I put him on the spot, basically told him it was now or never, and he kissed me. And it was magical. For the next 3 months, we continued our “friendship” except now, it was more of a physical friendship to add to our verbal bonding. It took me 3 MONTHS to get him to be my boyfriend. Not to say that I expected him to ask me right away, but 3 months is a long time. Especially since we’d been talking and hanging out for 5 or 6 months BEFORE any of this even happened. To me there was no question; I wanted to be with him. But, he was so set on not giving in, it made everything harder than it had to be.
This would be a theme between us for the next 3 years; a tug of war with him on every step that we took together. Now, I know that I should have seen this as a red flag, but back then, he was like a beautiful disaster of a challenge that I didn’t want to back down from. His off-putting demeanour didn’t bother me for long because he would always give something to hold on to. He would never meet me fully but he’d come close enough so that I would be happy. He was a master at avoiding confrontation.
Over the course of these 3 years, I became super close with everyone in his life: his family, his friends. It seemed like we’d been together for years, and I loved him deeply. I thought I could never love someone else like that, that he had to be the one. If he wasn’t, who was? I was extremely immersed in his life, yet he was not immersed in mine. He barely spent time with my family, he scoffed at my friends, he didn’t believe in my dreams though I did everything to help him achieve his. At this point I’m sure you’re all thinking, WTF?? WHY DIDNT YOU DUMP HIM?? I mean thats what I would have advised anyone else who had a boyfriend like this. But Jason always gave me small doses of love, moments of clarity where he would apologize and promise to change. I held on to those moments and used them as an excuse for him, knowing full well he wouldn’t come through.
There were many incidents where he lied to me, I knew he did and said nothing. There were moments were he would disappear for hours, I didn’t know where he was or what he was doing. There were SO MANY things, so many situations that looking back now, I just don’t understand why I put up with it. But I did.
In the 3rd year of our relationship, circumstances arose that resulted in him basically having to move out of his parents house. I wasn’t getting along with my mom at the time and it seemed like the perfect solution for us to move out together. We’d talked about it before but we never planned on actually doing it before finishing school. We did it anyway though, I found an apartment for us and we moved out maybe a month after making the decision. I think that I thought us living together would fix our issues, that we could be alone, without our parents and bond over our new found independence.
It was the exact opposite.
Jason and I had very different ideas about how we wanted to live – he wanted to feel the same way he did with his parents and I knew we couldn’t afford that. He had been working all summer at a job in his field and I was working part time in a retail store. We were both still in school and money was very tight. As everyone knows, money is a leading cause of divorce and in this case, issues in relationships. At least it started with money. Eventually Jason stopped coming home at night, made new friends ( none of which I knew ) and befriended one particular female which obviously made me extremely uncomfortable.
One night, we had a party and invited all of our friends – Jason invited his new friends too, including this girl. I was so stressed out with everything that’d been happening that I basically killed a bottle of vodka to myself and smoked a huge joint. I was messed up and feeling all kinds of emotions, as anyone would in that situation. In my blurry haze, I saw the girl walk in. I knew who she was, but when I finally got to talking to her, it was clear something had been going on.
Me: ” Hey! Thanks for coming!”
Her: “No problem! I really wanted to come, Jason is such a good study buddy he definitely deserved a night to party.”
Me: ( still with a smile on my face, trying not to punch her ) “Study buddy? What do you mean?”
Her: “Yeah, all these late nights at the library! He really motivates me!”
Guys, I don’t think I heard anything after the word “library” before grabbing Jason and cornering him in our bedroom with the door closed. I just broke down; it was obvious there was something going on with this girl.
Ladies you know what I’m talking about! That gut feeling! DONT IGNORE IT.
He obviously denied everything and somehow twisted the situation so that he was mad at ME for being suspicious. He walked out and I passed out on our bed and woke up the next day at 5:30pm.
Now, here’s where things got really messy. It’s a lot to explain so I thought it would be more clear in timeline format:
5:30pm: Jason leaves our apartment – doesn’t say where he’s going.
9:30pm: I wake up from a nap on the couch – he isn’t home.
11:30pm: I discover his phone is off – or died.
3:00am: Jason comes home, grabs some beer from our fridge and proceeds to leave again, telling me I am not welcome to join whatever the fuck he’s going to do.
11:30am: Jason has still not come home, I cannot contact him so I decide to leave and go to my friends house, taking clothes with me.
9:00pm: Jason calls me and says his phone “died”. Sorry.
9:00pm-9:30pm: I yell at Jason telling him if he doesn’t come see me to talk, we’re done.
Jason says he will come see me, but never shows up.
6:00pm: Jason comes to pick me up to go to our friends Christmas party, acting like everything is fine and dandy. But its NOT GUYS.
10:00pm: I drag Jason to our friend’s bedroom and demand answers. He asks me to go on a break and swears there is nothing going on with the girl.
12:00pm: Jason brings me home in complete silence.
4:30am: Jason calls me and wakes me up. He asks if I can stay with my parents for “2 weeks or something”. I tell him to fuck off and hang up.
10:00am: I attempt to go to work for Boxing Day but my manager sends me home because the customers are concerned that I keep crying into a folded pile of t-shirts.
December 27th – January 2nd
I go up north with my friends for New Years. Jason does not speak to me, does not wish me a happy new year, and I also see a picture of him on Facebook with this girl and a few other people. They’re at a chalet not far from where I am.
I drink 4 more shots and go to bed.
Jason calls me and asks if I want to meet him at a Tim Hortons downtown. I go, almost puke and drive away but manage to get myself inside. We talk for awhile and he asks me to come home ( at this point I had gone back to the apartment while he wasn’t home and dismantled my bed, but not before doing an CSI Miami level forensic inspection of every corner of the place looking for signs of infidelity). I very stupidly say yes, take all my stuff back, put my bed back together and resume living with him.
January 6th – January 10th
I am in the apartment and Jason is home for the entirety of the night 2 out of the 4 days. On the 10th, we go to a chalet with his friends. He leaves the room whenever I walk in.
We’ve been awake all night and Jason goes to brush his teeth at 6am. His phone is left unattended. I look at it, because at this point, who cares. I get the confirmation I need with tons upon tons of messages clearly showing I was right all along.
This story is long and sorted and very messy. I mean its not really even worth going into detail about what followed this. Think screaming, throwing things, crying, etc. I left the next day and never went back. Obviously he tried to get me back and I even almost gave in a few times, but the fact remains: a relationship should never be this way. People like to hang on to moments or times where people in their lives were who they wanted them to be. But people change, shit happens, and when its time to let go, you have to do it. This is a lesson that unfortunately can only be learned through experience.
We have made our peace, I got the answers to all the questions I was holding on to and, if you know me on a personal level, you’ll know I am much happier now. I thank the universe for bringing Jason into my life – though he hurt me more than anyone ever has, I know that I wouldn’t be who I am now, if it weren’t for that experience. As cheesy as it sounds, if you’re going through something similar, it’s gonna get better and I promise its worth it 🙂