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This Was Your Girlfriend

Ooh its hell
Knowing that for now
We shouldn’t kiss and tell
When it’s so good

Gary Clark Jr. from “Things Are Changin'”


She was your girlfriend for the last 8 weeks you two were together, and she ain’t even know it. You never told her that, and you never would, but if she was paying attention, if she trusted you, she would have noticed. Short of putting a ring on her finger, you were as committed to her as any man could be committed to someone.

But you never told her she was your girl, and somehow, you never made her feel like she was the only one. For most of the six months you two were together, she had her suspicions. There was one, or two, maybe even three people you called on nights you didn’t call her. You knew this, and yet, you did nothing to dispel those thoughts. As a matter of fact, you purposely never acted, all because she wasn’t your girlfriend. You knew a simple phone call before you turned in for the night would be a thoughtful gesture she would appreciate. But you denied her that because it felt too much like you were checking in, and if she was up late with the What Ifs, wondering what you were doing or who you were doing, that was her problem, not yours.

Foolishly you went to bed on those nights thinking she was thinking about you, when the truth is, the only reason she was awake was because she had company. Her phone was on silent while she was busy entertaining some guy she never told you about, a guy who came around after you two started doing whatever it is you were doing. When they met, she resisted for the most part, but he was cute and came correct, so she gave him her number. Two days later he asked her if she wanted to do lunch, and he ain’t even know how perfect his timing was because an hour prior, you asked her if you two could postpone the lunch plans you made. She went to lunch, and they hit it off, so she agreed to see him again because she didn’t know she was your girlfriend.

Still, you were the first pick, the plan A. That guy may have been Prince Charming, but you were King First Choice. You knew this because on her birthday, she wanted to spend time with you. Not the day before her birthday, not the day after, nor the week of, her actual born day. And everyone knows when someone wants you to be with them on the day they came out of their mother’s womb, that’s top dog status. Secretly, you didn’t want to burden such a huge responsibility, but on your first date you two discussed birthdays and hers was months away. You had plenty of time to end whatever it is you two were doing before she sent you the evite to the celebration of life with friends and local family. And yet, you remained around.

As her birthday drew near, you felt something within you take over. She started talking with more anxiety about turning a year older, and what it meant. Having already been through that age yourself (you were a couple years older than her), you coached her through it the best you could. You told her things to keep her mind quiet, and gently reminded her that it’s actually a blessing to turn a year older. The more you did this, the more she appreciated you and you realized nobody else in your life at that moment appreciated you quiet like her.

Now since you were single, you didn’t have to CC every girl that you saw around town on some Andre 3000 “I Choose You” type stuff. The other girls just started fading away, and some even did you a favor by fading you out themselves. By the time of her actual birthday there was no one else but her. She was your girlfriend and she ain’t even know it.

Still, you kept things between the two of you very casual. Though you brought a couple of friends around her, you never brought her around your friends. The difference was a matter of control. When you two went out, you took a lot of pictures together, but the ones you shared on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter were never of you and her. Those stayed in your personal collection. When you two went out, you tweeted where you were at and what you were doing, but never who you were with. On social media, you looked as single as a dollar bill.

But offline, in real life, you were happily attached to this woman and your inner circle knew all about her, even if she didn’t know they knew. One day Mom asked if there was someone in your life, and you told her about this woman. Mom said she sounded special, but you told her not to get too excited. You ain’t even know where things were headed, for now it was fun. Then there were your boys, who you talked to everyday, they knew about her and they even knew her name because of the golden rule, which is, thou without a name shall not be taken seriously.

She knew nothing of these small but symbolic gestures, but you knew exactly what it meant. This was your girlfriend. It was to her you were committed, and it was of her you were speaking about to others close to you. So why ain’t she know? Why didn’t you ever tell her she was your girlfriend? Why did you have to act so hard headed about verbalizing a title knowing that every time your name was brought up to her friends and they asked her what was going on with that, she sadly shrugged her shoulders?

Why did you have to wait six months to go by before she told you she wanted to have a talk?

You hated those words like everyone hates those words. “We have to talk” or some variation of that phrase is always the wind up to some knockout blow and when she said those four words, you immediately flinched. She laughed. “Relax,” she said. “It’s not like I’m pregnant.” Your shoulders dropped. Relief. “Okay,” you said. “Then what is it.”

“I’m moving down South.”

This time, you didn’t flinch, you winced. “Why?” you asked.

“I got a job offer and it’s too good to pass up,” she said. “I’m moving in 8 weeks.”

“Where?” you asked.

This was good news for her, and big news for you. You had to process everything. You didn’t know if you were sad, relieved, maybe both? You would deal with it later, for now, you put on your happy face, gave her a big hug and told you two had to celebrate.

With all the moving and organizing she had to do, and all the everyday running around you had to do, a formal celebration was pushed back. Instead, you two spent the majority of those 8 weeks together. She once complained about how you two never went out, and for 8 weeks you committed to showing her different.

But every single day that passed within those 8 weeks was bittersweet. Much like the days leading up to her birthday, the days leading up to her departure were filled with anxiety and you didn’t know why. On the day she left, you were crushed, and clueless as to why that was because you knew the day was coming. So why so sad? Why were you telling her not to cry the day she left, when you knew on the inside you were crying too?

Probably because for 8 weeks you were saying goodbye to a woman who was your girlfriend for 6 months, and you ain’t even know it.

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  • Tiffanie Bright

    I hope she reads this and knows she was your girlfriend, albeit too late.

  • Ariel Williams

    Tough. I hope she knows this is about her…

  • Nimaako Brown

    Sad, but beautifully written.

  • Leigh-Ann

    Sad and frustrating, thanks for sharing though.

  • LinZ

    another great piece.. I hope she knows what she really was to you…

  • Zaza

    While beautifully written… it’s annoying AF.
    IDK why guys do that….

  • Tai

    A friend sent me this because it’s similar to a situation I went through (being referred to as an ex now but never his girlfriend in the moment). This actually hurt to read more than it helped. In hindsight, I never questioned that he cared about me but if I’m being honest with myself, I doubt he was ever going to commit. I sense the same in reading this since even in the final days you were adamant about never telling her she was your gf and questioned being relieved when learning about her upcoming move. She let you off the hook in a sense. “It doesn’t take a whole day to recognize sunshine.”

  • Jolie

    You’re contradicting yourself. In another recent post I read about sleeping next to an engaged woman, you conclude with the claim that you know better. So why aren’t you acting better?

  • Danni Longtimelurker

    She was not your girlfriend. This is stupid, you are not yet ready for a girlfriend because you don’t really know how to be a good boyfriend. You need practice, G. I’m sad for you, you seem like a decent guy but as of yet it doesn’t seem like you have it together. Keep working, keep writing but one day you’ll just have to be. No more trying, just be. I’m almost sure you have it in you.

  • LDJ

    Damn. This was a little ruthless but as a happily committed man I must say Danni is right to an extent. This line right here “Why did you have to act so hard headed about verbalizing a title” says it all. Titles = accountability and responsibility which I’m assuming you didn’t want. I’ve had some good women in my past that I straight up can’t list a bad quality about but I never made them my girl. Why? Because I didn’t want the obligation nor did I want to close the door on the possibility of meeting someone better. If after 6 months you weren’t tryna lock ol girl down something was missing.

  • Me

    I really enjoyed reading this as it is a thorough and honest examination of the perils we put ourselves through to protect our emotional well-being.

  • disqus_LX2qM9uqBO

    This is beautiful. I’m a first time visitor so I don’t know the history that makes this upsetting to others but it’s a beautiful display of self inventory.

  • Guest

    Very nicely written but very sad too. This had happened to me and it happens all the time. I’ve never understood this process that men go through when they are afraid to commit. I just hope that after she leaves, you all dont repeat the same mistakes.

  • GlendaleGal

    Sounds like a classic case of “The one who got away”…..I have this discussion all the time with my elder patients who have been married 40 plus years… my generation of men don’t want something serious … if its too good then they shy away… they want to be bachelors until around 40 but even i have met 40 year old’s who still don’t want to settle. She did the right thing in moving on because she has opportunities but it has to be hard for her not to know how you truly felt. Eventually she will move on, get married, and have kids (because southern men are gentlemen, LOL) and you’ll still be wanting to “keep you options open” (like a true New York male). It’s life and a learning lesson, just don’t let the next one “get away!”

  • Me

    Painfully beautiful…

  • Kj

    U.O.E.N.O at its finest. Im currently in this situation and I finally came to the conclusion that as patient as I have tried to be- we have been talking (seriously) long distance since April he has yet to talk about plans of the future. Its unfortunate because I would love to continue a relationship with this man but as you stated the calls that go unanswered or the nights when I am left with what ifs/no calls/ no sweet nothings are finally over. Im going back to dating older guys- more direct and they dont have much time to keep me in limbo.

  • justme

    I just love reading your posts… one thing i have to say is whats funny, is listening to someone lie when you already know the truth… hahahaha i better stop getting behind the clearance rack and stop marking myself down. Im gonna get behind the glass where they keep the valuables… thanx for the good reading my LAWYER and I LOVE LOVE LOVE you… OH OH OH.. whats love got to do with it ??? HUMMMMMM ????

  • justme

    one more thing baby !!!! OH OH OH. any guy who gets on here and brags about all these woman hes been with tells you alot about himself !!! Maybe you should get your life together before you give advise to others. Take some of your own advise and maybe u will find a woman who u wont cheat on HUMMMMMMM ????

  • his ex

    EXACTLY !!! At least im not the only one who catches on to this bullshit. and when i say bullshit I know. Because I am the other woman… And whats so funny Jolie is that listening to someone lie when you already know the truth… but it wasnt me that went with the guy as he says. It was in fact the other way around, he cheated with another girl…because i never was his gf EVER.. and his names not JOZEN either. ALL LIES

  • thats right she wasnt your gf

    hahaha He dosent know how to be a god Bf.. YOU GOT THAT RIGHT… and whats so funny is im the ex hes talking about.. But i never was his gf and it was him sleeping with a guy. not the other way around as he mentions it here…. his name is not jozen and he lives in canada hes pretending to be someone else… What a JOKE. bragging about all these woman etc, if he took some of his own advise hed be happy , but he cant stay faithful… hes a huge lier and manipuler.. i should know i met him in 2006. thats 8 years ago.. hasnt changed one bit

  • ontario girl

    I liked what Danni said SHE WAS NOT YOUR GF !!! you dont know how to be a good BF. Besides who really cares or wants to hear about this girl or that girl.. sounds like your bragging, and your the one who needs relationship advise BIGTIME either that or read proverbs from the bible might help ya

  • me

    they will always get away and she did know how he felt

  • his ex

    i was nothing to him and never will be i love how people tell only half truths its the same as lieing.. This is such crap and he never treated me good in any way at all and it was him cheating not the other way around. just so you all know

  • your such a creep

    nooooooooooo i was not his gf ever this is all lies.. what a joke this is and what he is.. hes no Jozen and he lives in vancouver.. this will all catch up with him oneday.. as my mom used to say it will all come out in the wash.. Plus i have a good LAWYER and well see who will be laughing once his sorry ass is proved to have stalked and hacked my email facebook etc for over 2 years.. What a creep..