People can overlook the craziest things when they think they're in love. What seems like an obvious red flag to outsiders may seem like a small misunderstanding to the person wearing rose colored glasses in the marriage.
But sometimes, there's a red flag that is so obvious that it shatters any excuse a person might make for their partner. Those kinds of red flags are the kind that make people finally say, "Forget this! I'M OUT!"
Content has been edited for clarity.
"My ex-wife made an adult movie with her father's friend. I confronted her and she flew into a rage. There was no denying it. I saw the friggin' thing with my own two eyes. We fought for several days, as she threw every item in the house at me. Destroyed almost every room. It looked like the house had been tossed in a police search.
Even so, we were married. I was at least hoping to get to the whole truth of it before deciding what to do. We had been married less than a year. I took my vows seriously, but this was hard to accept and move on. Yet, I was trying to find a way to do so.
Finally, the fight erupts into an unforgivable moment. She smashed my Fender Custom Shop Stratocaster over my back. Not only was it my favorite instrument, it was by far the most expensive and rare guitar I would likely ever own, but WOW, was it as solid as a baseball bat. I thought it broke my neck/back. I went black and just remember a huge crunch sound.
I'm not sure what really happened after that, only that I eventually snapped out of the fog to be in my bed and extremely sore and groggy. When I was knocked unconscious, she put prescription sleep medication in a syringe, shot me up, knocked me out, and held me hostage for the next several days. She was a nurse.
All of this coming after 2 years of mental and emotional battery. As a man in an abusive relationship, no one takes you seriously. There aren't many programs or outreach centers for battered men. In fact, just saying battered men is laughable to most people. Law enforcement thinks you are joking, dramatic or wasted. Even as criminal as these acts were, I had a very hard time proving any of it. She was a great manipulator and was not known to be aggressive, abusive or violent in any way.
When this all came out, no one believed it. My own family members questioned it. It was such an insane circumstance that it was unbelievable. I eventually divorced her, but not before filing criminal and civil charges against her. Today she is in prison serving 18 years for multiple felonies.
This was in 2011. I am since very happily remarried and now a father. Don't let anyone hold you down, you deserve much more."
"He tried to commit vehicular homicide.
He was angry when he picked me up from work, ranting about how my mother's boyfriend had been out that day to look at a problem with our air ducts. (A little background: I rent the house from my grandmother. She usually had my mother's boyfriend look at any problems with the house because he was a professional handyman and if he couldn't fix it he could at least give her an idea of what had to be done.)
Now, neither one of us liked the guy. He was a heavy drinker who wasn't nearly as good a handyman as he thought he was, but my grandmother was out there to make sure he behaved himself. And we really needed to know what was going on with those ducts. There was no need to even speak to him—my partner could have just played Diablo until the guy was done.
Instead, my partner was literally ranting and raving on the way home. He was driving much too fast, yelling about how disrespected he felt. I was clutching the seat and wondering if I was gonna die.
When he turned into our driveway, my grandmother was standing near the end of it, talking to the guy. And my partner did not slow down!
I yelled, 'NO!' He stopped so abruptly that it nearly gave me whiplash. I scrambled out of the car, shaking and almost in tears. Partner reversed out of the driveway, and at first, I was relieved. I thought he'd go cool off somewhere and come back ready to behave like a sane adult.
Instead, he whipped the car into the parking lot across the street where the guy had parked his truck. He rammed it straight into the guy, pinning him against the truck before reversing again and coming back to park in our drive.
I mean oh my god, I just watched the man I loved try to deliberately kill another man. Partner went straight into the house as Grandma and I were fumbling for our cell phones to call the police.
He was arrested that afternoon. The guy was treated at the hospital and released. He had no serious injuries because he seemed to have the devil's own luck.
Partner became Ex-Partner and never set foot into my house again."
"I divorced my first husband after 23 years (we lived separately for three before filing). During the separation from my first husband, I met and started dating my second husband. We dated for five years and were married/living together for one. I was feeling heartbroken from the breakup of my second marriage.
I found myself swept off my feet by a man fifteen years younger than me. We met when I was visiting another state for a family reunion. He was not from there either. We were staying at the same hotel, and kept running into each other at restaurants and other venues even in neighboring towns. He was a giant Texan, who stood at 6’8 and weighed in at 270 pounds of mostly muscle. I could put my hand against his and he could bend his fingers over the whole of my finger lengths. He was literally a giant. He asked me on a date. I initially declined, but we kept running into each other, and he was relentless in pursuing me. After his fifth invitation, I accepted. He really surprised me; he had gone out and bought a picnic basket, good bread, some olives, cheeses and fruit, and made us a charcuterie tray.
He worked as an inspector for the petroleum industry. He was staying there for a month. I extended my visit. We started spending every minute that he wasn’t at work together. He literally swept me off my feet. Before I knew it, two weeks had passed and he was asking me to be his wife. I know I was out of my mind, insane, but here was some of my reasoning: at the time I had lots of good friends from India. They have arranged marriages and their divorce rate is so incredibly low. I rationalized it would be like an arranged marriage, we would learn about each other after the marriage.
We got married in Illinois and I went back home to Oregon, to pack some small items. Two weeks later, I flew to San Antonio where my new mother-in-law picked me up at the airport. My husband worked on the road, but insisted he wanted me to live in Texas, where he owned a home in San Antonio and a hunting ranch in Freer, TX.
When my new mother-in-law picked me up she seemed really nervous and kept making phone calls in Spanish. I could make out that the lady wouldn’t leave the house. I didn’t know who she was talking to and didn’t want to tip my hand about understanding some Spanish. Suddenly my husband calls me and tells me plans have changed and I’ll be going to his parents home for the night. I explained that I wasn’t a child and I wanted to know what was going on. He said someone had been living in the house and they were told to move over six months ago, but they were not quite gone, but they would be gone by tomorrow. He said he was getting on a plane and would be there that evening.
When he got there, I got a full picture of reality. The truth was that my new husband was not legally MY husband, he was still very much legally married to 'the lady' who wasn’t yet out of the house. Actually, she had no inklings of any problems until three days before I flew to San Antonio. That’s when she was served with divorce papers and rental keys. Needless to say, she was having issues with the situation.
I was going to buy a ticket back to Oregon. My husband made up a huge story, about his wife cheating on him while he was on the road and he roped his mother into supporting his story and telling me that he had filed months before we were married, but there had been a mistake at the court that caused the suit to be thrown out, so I stayed. Months later, I discovered the truth. I decided I wanted to go home to Oregon and decide if I wanted to continue the marriage. I tried to speak to my husband about it. We had been married for six months. By then my husband had changed jobs so he could stay home in San Antonio with me. When I told him I was thinking of going back to Oregon, he took me by the hand, (gently), and calmly said, ‘if you ever try to leave me I will kill you, bury you on the ranch, and no one will ever find your body.' Then he kissed me on me forehead and said, baby girl you are mine forever, you got that. THAT WAS MY 'EFF THIS, I’M OUT OF HERE' moment. I told him. I wasn’t serious about Portland, I was just testing him and kissed him.
A little while later, I got up and started cooking dinner. I told him I needed to run to the store to get a couple of things. I drove as fast as I could to our bank and withdrew $3000 then I drove to the airport to buy a ticket, all the while I was on the phone with my older brother who used to ride with the F-Troop biker group out of Granite City IL. He now lived in Ohio, and he said I could come stay with him and his wife. I knew I would be safe there. He was the only man I knew that my husband was afraid of. I bought a ticket leaving the next morning. I knew my husband and his father were leaving San Antonio the next morning to go work the ranch. When I woke up, my husband asked what my plans for the day were. I previously had planned to go to a photo exhibit at a gallery, so I told him that’s where I would be.
I drove him to his fathers and dropped him off, he gave me a big hug and kiss, he gave me some money and told me to go have some fun.
I immediately drove back home where I stuffed as many of my belongings as I could in two suitcases and a carry on. I called a cab to bring me to the airport. I locked the keys inside the house and left.
After I got into my seat on the plane, I waited until they were starting to close the cabin doors, then I called my husband. I reminded him about what he had told me he would do to me if I ever tried to leave. I asked if he remembered telling me that he would kill me and bury my body on the ranch, and he said yes, and he meant every word he said. I told him, I believe he meant what he said and I took that threat seriously. I told him 'that’s why I’m on my way to my brothers house'.
He asked me where I was, I said I was on a plane and that I had to get off the phone because the doors were closing so the phones had to be turned off.
He drove to where I was. Luckily, his mother called to warn me he was on his way, so I drove to my mother's home in another state. He realized after a while (a month) where I was and started calling me over and over threatening to kill me if I didn’t come back. Then he started threatening to kill my family, even leaving the threats on the answering machine. One time, after hours of his incessant calling, I called the police and they came to the house to take a report. He called while the officers were there and in the midst of listening to his previous threats. He started to leave another threat and one of the officers answered the phone. He didn’t care; he threatened to kill the officers too.
I moved to a very small town, changed my name, and hid. A couple of years later, I had gotten real with myself in therapy and I met a man who I wanted to have a REAL and honest relationship with, so I filed for divorce. I got a phone call from my husband two weeks before our divorce. My husband was so nice on the phone; he apologized for all the things that he had said and done and he pleaded with me to go with him to a spa in Arizona for a few days before our divorce to see if we could reconcile. I told him I was in love with another man and he started to get a little nasty. That’s when my current husband, who was my boyfriend at the time spoke up and told him there would be no more of that. He told him that part of his life was over and he was going to stop. And he did. Truthfully, I’m pretty sure my husband called him previously. Knowing him the way I do now. I’ll never know for sure."
"We had been living together about 12 years. We had a home based business that we started together. It took about 3 years before we began making money. But once it started, it started pouring in. He handled the advertising, printing etc. and I did the books and anything requiring typing. Neither could run the company without the other. We had a system and it worked for us. Working from home, being our own boss, it was great. The money and the freedom allowed us to do pretty much what we wanted to. We bought a nice home, we travelled, we were living the good life. We’d go to the local bar a few nights each week. We met lots of people, had parties at the house a lot. It was fun.
I’ve never been the type of person that had self-discipline. I never had a set routine. I’m more like 'the spur of the moment' type. Spontaneous. He was the opposite. He was up the same time every morning. I’d sleep in. He’d plan his day, week and next month. I never knew what I’d be doing in an hour. I guess this is how this all came about.
He was always griping about my lack of structure. I agreed and began to do things like he did. He set time frames and deadlines for me. He’d have a 'to do' list for me every morning. If I didn't complete something, he’d want a good explanation. At first, I felt like a child and he was the dad. A strict dad. But as time went by, I became very self disciplined. I was grateful that he had helped me change my ways.
I had a routine, my life was running smooth. But he continued to boss me around. My friend would come over regularly. We had a pool and me and her would swim and work on our tan several days a week...but only after I had my 'to do' list complete. She said something to me one day that I had never realized till then. She asked me why I allow him to treat me the way he does? She mentioned situations where he was controlling, bossy, unreasonable, and how he had double standards for me. From that day on I saw what she meant. I began addressing these issues when I noticed them. He didn’t like it. Somethings got resolved and others didn’t.
A few years went by and my dad got sick. I was spending a lot of time with him. This created problems at home. He didn’t like me changing my routine to accommodate my dad. Every day was worse. My dad was moved into a nursing home. I helped him move. He was in the hospital a lot and I’d stop what I was doing and go to the hospital. I wasn’t neglecting my work, I’d complete everything, but in the evening instead of when he wanted it done. Heck, we worked at home, we were our own boss, my work was getting done, my dad was dying, give me a break!
His double standards got worse. He’d call me when I was with my dad and demand I get home and work. I got home early and he wasn’t there. I found him at the bar kissing some woman. I should have left him then, but the thought of leaving with my dad in such bad health was just too much to deal with right then. Plus, the money was so good. If we split up, I’d have to find a job and that was just too much on my plate at that time, so I forgave him and stayed. Things got worse.
It was after lunch, and he wasn’t back from his errands. I finished my work and headed to get groceries. I saw his car at the bar and stopped. He was blasted. He’d been drinking more and more. He told me I needed to be home finishing my work. I said it’s done. He said 'then do tomorrow’s work so you can be caught up when you take off to go goof off with your dad.' That ticked me of and he knew it. He went on and on talking to me this way. And in front of everyone at the bar. I left. I went home. My friend stopped by and we were talking. He pulled up and started complaining about how I’m always goofing off. My friend was getting up to go, and he told her all the reasons why he didn’t want her coming around. He was out of line and out of control. My friend left. He was telling me that I was not going to do this or that. I wasn’t going to spend my time goofing off blah blah blah. I stood up and told him, 'Forget you! I quit! Consider this your 2-week notice. You have 2 weeks to be out of my house!'
It felt so good to quit that relationship!
We had a mail order business. The day I told him I quit was the last day I worked it. That anthrax threat had people to scared to open their mail and it had effecting our business. I heard he tried to hire someone to do my work, but couldn’t. The company went under within 2 months.
My father died about 2 months later. I got a nice inheritance and bought the friggin' bar! He had tried to sue me for everything and the judge laughed him out of the courthouse. He wasn’t awarded anything. It was all in my name to begin with. I also had a protective order on him. My attorney wrote it up that he can never come within 500 ft of me and never step foot on any businesses or property that I own.
That was about 15 years ago. I’ve never talked to him since and I accidentally saw a glimpse of him once. That was enough.
I had a blast owning the bar, but it was a money pit. I closed the doors in ‘11, then I moved 300 miles away.
"When I met my ex, he was a recovering drinker. He had been sober for about four years at that point. I never had any experience with a drinker, but I knew that the possibility of a relapse was very high. I took the chance and entered into a relationship with him.
We dated for over a year and we were both very happy. One Friday evening while we were watching the sunset on his boat, he asked me to marry him. I said yes and I was so happy.
We married several months later. A few months into our marriage I became pregnant with our daughter. The next seven years were the happiest of my life. I had two daughters, a wonderful husband, and a blessed life.
If you had asked me at that time if my husband would ever lie to me, I would have said absolutely not. We had sure a wonderful connection with each other. It was very passionate, respectful and loving.
After the first seven years of our marriage, the relapses started. He was the type of drinker that once he stared to drink he would not stop. Literally, 24 hours a day. I took him to rehab about five times during our marriage.
During the next seven years, it was a cycle of him getting sober for a while and then relapsing. One time, it was Vicodin. He would buy it at work. He was taking 20 Vicodin a day. I’m not exaggerating. All the other times it was drinks.
As the years went by, it got worse. It is a progressive disease. Everything that came out of his mouth was a lie. I wanted so much to believe that he wanted to get better, but he just couldn’t do it.
At some point, he just disgusted me. I couldn’t stand to be near him. I tried to be supportive, but I just was not able to do it. Right before I took him to rehab the last time, he was at his worst. I just wanted to be away from him and I didn’t want the kids to see him like this either. I took the girls to stayed at my parents for a few nights.
One morning, I went to check on him before I went to work. He was passed out in our bed. I could hardly wake him. I also found a rubber in the living room. I looked around the kitchen and found a credit card receipt for an adult service. Actually it was two receipts totaling about $1,300.
I was not totally surprised because I was not sleeping with him. That was the moment that I decided that I was done. I just couldn’t do it anymore.
I got him into rehab one last time, filed for divorce, and started the process of grieving the loss of my family unit. It was the most difficult thing I had ever been through. I’m still recovering and it’s been over six years.
The day I married him I knew that relapse was a possibly; I just had no idea what that looked like or how difficult it would be."
"We were six (almost seven) years into the relationship – a lot of stuff has happened between us. Disappointment, heartache, broken promises, the works. To keep it brief, I’ve never felt lonelier than I did then. I’ve come to realize that if I were to stay with this man, I would continue to live a very lonely existence. He’s entitled. He’d constantly keep me from the people I love and the things I like to do. He’d constantly demand for my time and attention (sulk when he doesn’t get it), but then cast me aside once my focus is on him.
He’d make his problems my problems, but my problems would just be my problems. If that’s not enough, he’d often talk down on my problems – minimizing them, brushing them off, ignoring them, and/or making it about him. For example, my mum asked if I would co-sign her home loan, and I didn’t want to. I told him about it and that I feel guilty for saying no. His immediate reaction was, 'You can’t. What if we decide to buy a place together? I can’t take the loan out myself. It’s not fair.'
I have thought of ending the relationship many times.
My ex had keyhole gallbladder removal surgery. I’ve not slept properly for about four, five days by then (I took the hard, uncomfortable pleather hospital couch since he wanted me to stay); he'd been acting like a 3-year-old the entire time (including the few weeks leading up to surgery). I had to deal with his insurance, hospital bills, his doctors, nurses, parents, sister etc.
Everything, all by myself, while he acted like he had just narrowly escaped death. I mean, I didn’t expect him to help me in his condition, but he could have lessened the emotional burden?
So when my family and his best friend visited, I was so relieved to see them, I nearly cried. I thought, thank goodness! I get to interact with people, someone that is not him! They brought me food! They asked me if I’m okay! If I needed anything! Some respite – at last – among people I love, and am comfortable with. The others can keep him occupied while I eat!
But I guess it didn’t sit well with him that my attention was on everyone else, rather than him. He cried. I was terrified that something’s wrong. He started sobbing and twisting his body in bed, going on and on about the excruciating pain he was in. It was an alarming sight. We asked if he thought he needed the nurse or doctor – he insisted he didn’t. Being Asian, it was also awkward for many to see a 37-year-old man cry. Most of them decided that 'he needs rest and privacy' and that 'it’s time to go.' But after everyone left, as I was beginning to insist that we call the doctor, he said, 'I wasn’t actually in pain. I was so touched by everyone’s kindness.'
When I heard that, all I felt was anger. I felt nothing for him, except resentment. And I thought, how pathetic is he? Why am I still with him? How pathetic am I?
We went on a break while he was still recuperating, and broke up less than a month later."
"Buckle up kids, time to tell you about the silliest two-month relationship I’ve ever had.
For some backstory, I knew this guy when we were kids and he was a childhood crush of mine. We went to church together. Eventually, his family started going to a different church. We grew apart, and then my family left the church we’d been a part of, and soon enough we were adults. Off to college, hadn’t seen spoken to or thought about each other in decades. Facebook allowed me to reconnect with some other old church friends and one day, Blip! A friend request from him. Cool! I was in a long-term relationship at the time, as was he.
Cut to about a year later: I had broken up with my long-term boyfriend and was living the single college life and loving every second of it. I’d been single for about 2 months at that time. He messaged me one day out of the blue, asking if I’d like to go to lunch to catch up as old friends. It turned out his job was in my town, so we were closer in vicinity than we had been in years. I was excited to catch up with an old friend, so I said sure.
He confided that he was not super happy with his girlfriend as we ate lunch. I told him about my recent breakup and that I understood getting out of a long-term thing can be difficult and kind of scary. Other than that, we had a nice time catching up. Lunch ended, we parted ways.
A couple weeks later, he messaged me again, saying 'I did it! I broke up with her.' I responded that I was sorry things didn’t work out between them, but glad he was able to pursue his happiness now. To that he replied that he wanted to take me on a date. This fanned the long-dimmed embers of my childhood crush on him, and, being that we were both available now, I again said, sure.
We had a date—he picked me up, we went to dinner, yadda yadda. During the date he confessed that seeing me for that 'friendly lunch' was what really spurred him to act. He then told me that he had just moved the last of his belongings out of his ex’s apartment that day. So he was a lot more freshly single than I thought. I though he’d taken a couple weeks, at least a few days…but nope. He went from a 3-year, living-together relationship on Monday, to a breakup (and asking me out) on Wednesday, to taking me on a date Friday with moving boxes still in his car.
Okay, red flag number one, but… let’s see where this goes.
The date ends… but then… it doesn’t. He ended up staying all weekend. By Sunday night, I had to quite literally guide him to my front door to make it clear, he was going to leave. I was a bit annoyed, since I like my space and my private time. But, I still liked him enough to agree to see him again.
That should have been red flag number two. Keywords: should have. It wasn't, but this was:
I took him to a party my friend was having at her apartment, and introduced him around to some of my classmates and friends from college. He immediately began acting all-too-familiar with my friends. You know how some people can naturally join any group and it’s totally seamless; they seem to already belong and just kind of jive with the group easily? Yeah, he wasn’t like that. But he tried to be. It was just awkward. I can’t even put it into words. Laughing at other people’s inside jokes, trying to make new ones with people he’d only known for 2 minutes, making the kind of joking jabs at people only good friends can make… and of course, this is when I met…The Voices.
He was acting in such a weird way that I was already embarrassed, but then he rolled out his 'impressions.'
There was Mickey Mouse. Pretty good impression, actually, but...the things he would say. Just the vilest, nastiest things you could imagine. All in jest, but in that voice. It was disturbing.
Then there was what I can only call (and I apologize in advance because this is not going to be politically correct) 'the mentally challenged pervert with a lisp and the voice of a toddler.' Similar to Mickey, but also different. Maybe more like… a Muppet? If Muppets were perverts?
Then there was the Stereotypical Gay Guy voice. One of my very best friends is a gay man. This did not go over well.
Cut to me, cringing, nearly dead of embarrassment because of this guy. We quickly left and I did not bring him around to anymore of my friends’ gatherings.
So THAT was definitely red flag number two.
We’re about two weeks into our relationship now, and we’re at my apartment hanging out on the balcony. A lot happens in this one evening, so let’s just say we’re getting through red flags number three, four, AND five in the course of a few hours.
-He told me about a job he applied for across the country and proceeded to plan out finding a place to live for both of us, including that it would be near a university and that I’d be finishing my degree out there with him.
-He tried to get me to agree to bang on every surface and every piece of furniture in my entire apartment...which I shared with two roommates. This included on furniture THEY owned… and… IN THEIR BEDS. Nope!
-He called me Katie. Now, I didn’t even notice this. He got so wrapped up in a self-inflicted guilt trip over it that he started bawling, hyperventilating, and full on having a panic attack over it. He meant to say 'baby,' but 'Katie' came out because (you guessed it) over the last three years with his ex, the two words were synonymous.
Like I said I didn’t even notice being called Katie so I didn’t care… but his full blown tantrum (with himself) over it was annoying, to say the least.
Nevertheless, we persisted.
At some point over the next two weeks (nearing a month in, now) he started trying to get me to agree to bang in public. Every time we went anywhere, he would point to a railing, or a tree in the park, or an alleyway, and talk about how he wanted me there. Wanted to bend me over that railing. Wanted to push me up against that tree. Wanted me to give him a quickie behind a dumpster.
YUCK. No Thank You. Red flag number six.
Around that same time, my family was planning a trip. Just a quick 3-day weekend at a rented beach house in southern California. They knew him, because he was a childhood friend, and encouraged him to come along.
He got all excited and was so excited to join us. I (for some reason) was still on board with him, so I was OK with him tagging along. The trip was a month out.
Let’s zoom through the next two weeks of his weirdness.
-He called me Katie a couple more times; had a breakdown each time; I felt obligated to reassure him it was OK each time. Admittedly, though, it was getting old.
-He pontificated at length about his disdain for 'Bros' and 'Bro-Broads.' 'Bros' being your typical So-Cal Surfer Dude or Jersey Shore type fellows. 'Bro-Broads' being your average bleach-blonde, fake tanned, teacup puppy-in-purse having broads who tend to date said 'Bros.' He himself was a cookie cutter Bro. He failed to see this.
-He talked about how he once banged a fat girl, on a dare. He talked about how disgusted he was by the whole ordeal and by fat people in general. Definitely knew I had body issues stemming from being a fat kid. Oh well.
-He responded to everything I did or said with 'I approve.' Ew, who cares? I do what I want. If not with 'I approve,' he would just laugh at everything I said. Even if I started a sentence and took a pause to breathe, he would laugh. Like, do you listen to the words coming out of my mouth, or do you just think everything I say is a joke and therefore you must laugh, regardless of what I say?
-He hugged me tight, and whispered in my ear 'I’ll be right back' every time he had to go anywhere. Like. Anywhere. To the bathroom. OK? I’ll try not to die of loneliness while you’re gone for 2 minutes?
-He said 'Good girl,' the way one would say to a dog who’s learned a trick, any time he witnessed me taking my birth control pill. Woof. Woof.
So, where are we now? Red flag number 13? Eh, let’s round it up to a nice tight 15.
It’s mid-August now. I was pretty annoyed with him at this point and didn’t really want to continue down the path we were on. I didn’t see it working out. But! It was his BIRTHDAY! I couldn’t break up with him on his birthday. So what did I do instead? Told him I wanted to take a break from sleeping together. I still wanted to date him, but felt like getting it on was becoming his main priority and I wanted to see how compatible we were without it. He took it like a champ.
Two more weeks go by and I am ~certain~ that we are not going to work out long-term, but I still liked him as a person, and as annoying as he was, he was treating me well. Maybe I could turn it around. Maybe not. I wasn’t too invested either way.
But…the trip with my family was coming up, and as he’d already been invited and was stoked to come along, I felt too apprehensive to disinvite him and break things off before the trip.
Oh, what a fool I was…
We drive from my town to my parents’ town and meet up with my brother. From there we all pile into my brother’s car and he drives us down to So-Cal. So far so good.
Family likes the guy. He’s on his best behavior.
One night goes by and things are actually going alright. The second day there we spent on the pier/wharf/harbor area, just doing touristy things. Still going pretty OK.
Second night happens to be our 2-month anniversary. He snuck a box of chocolates in his weekend bag and had kept them hidden from me the whole time so far. He was so proud of himself when he gave them to me. Like a little kid giving his mom a macaroni necklace on Mother’s Day. The look on his face was precious and I like chocolate, so win-win. Except he thought that was his ticket to nookie-town. And this is where we come to our final red flag that had me saying, 'Forget this, I'm out!'
Our sleeping quarters in this rented beach house were actually a dining room off the kitchen, and our only privacy was a set of accordion-style slatted shutters. If we were doing anything, and I mean anything, and someone had come into the kitchen for a glass of water, we’d be caught. This was a house full of my family members. Absolutely not.
So he’s pressuring, and pressing, and trying to get very romantic… when he pulls out this deeply dramatic, but brief, speech about how these last two months have been his happiest in long time, how great he thought I was, how I was so different and special and blah blah blah (excuse me while I barf) and ended with 'Thank you for these wonderful two months, Katie.'
I said 'Uhh… what?'
'You uh… you just called me Katie again…'
You won’t be surprised to find here, dear reader, that this cued yet another crying, hyperventilating, pacing, clawing-at-his-eyes meltdown. It was the middle of the night. I tried to tell him it wasn’t a big deal, I wasn’t mad, I understood he was still getting used to not using the name Katie. I tried to get him to just lay down with me and go to sleep. I didn’t want to fight. He refused. Insisted on taking a run.
We were in a strange town on a beach and it was the middle of the night. He wanted to go. I let him.
This was when I knew 100% that I was done.
I was asleep by the time he came back, and he slept the rest of the night on the couch in the living room.
This was only night 2 of 3! And I didn’t have my own ride home. I had to stick it out or make my brother leave early with me, so I stuck it out.
The next day, I stayed as far away from the guy as I could all day. I didn’t eat with him, didn’t sit with him in the car, barely spoke to him. My brother knew something was up, and he pulled the guy aside and told him basically, 'Whatever you did, you’re gonna really have to work to fix it because she’s done.'
Well, that certainly didn’t make the guy feel any better. He spent the final night on the couch again. I tried to get him to just sleep in our 'room' with me. I tried again to convince him I wasn’t mad at him and didn’t hate him, but I think he could tell it would be our last night sleeping in the same bed, so he declined.
Next morning as we’re leaving, I’m saying goodbye to the family and he can barely keep it together. The 7-hour drive back to my parents’ town was pretty awkward. Pretty silent.
Then the further 2-hour trip to my town was even MORE awkward, this time enhanced by him crying and begging me the ENTIRE 2-HOUR DRIVE not to break up with him. I just kept repeating, 'I just don’t think you’re ready for a serious relationship yet. I don’t think I am either. We need to step back and take some space and some time.'
When we finally arrived at my apartment to drop him off at his car (and finally give me a break from his whining) I could barely contain my excitement for it all to be OVER. He begged me a few more times to reconsider. I said I’d call him if I changed my mind. He finally drove away.
And that was the end of the roller-coaster ride that was (briefly) dating him. I haven’t spoken to him since."