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How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days

A personal essay on what happens when the magic goes away

By Reese Robinson

When going through a breakup, it’s natural to cling to things of comfort. For me, that’s romantic comedies, and I decided to start with one of my favourites – How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days. When Andie writes her article, she opens it by saying “I’ve lost a guy, and I don’t know why”, but I can safely say I know how I lost mine.

Unlike Andie, I didn’t try to push him away by using obvious dating faux pas, instead, I genuinely lost him. We dated for two years and he made me feel like I was magic. He’d do little things every day to let me know that he loved me; bring me a bouquet of my favourite flowers, surprise me at work at the end of my shift so I wouldn’t have to bus home, buy the ingredients for my favourite foods and cook them with me while we listened to records, he quit smoking because I hated the smell and more than anything else, I could see it in his eyes. Every time he looked at me, his eyes lit up like someone had just handed him a new life. I didn’t care that his hands were always covered in car oil and wouldn’t come clean in the shower, or that all his hoodies were falling apart, or that he only had one pair of shoes. Something about him was hypnotizing and from the day we met, I knew I wanted to have it in my life forever. Unfortunately, all good things come to an end.

Despite how much he loved me, how much effort he put in, he was clueless and would make small mistakes that usually I’d be able to overlook, but unfortunately my previous relationship had tacked so much baggage to me that I couldn’t get over these little nuggets – photos of his exes that he’d accidentally left buried in his Snapchat memories, him being a little too close with a female co-worker for my taste, little white lies to cover up things he was embarrassed about. He always tried to fix it, but these small things had become a part of his behaviour and it left me concerned.

We moved in together and after a while, his face no longer lit up when he saw me. He no longer made me feel magical. It got to the point where he barely looked at me at all anymore and whenever we did speak, we were arguing about something small. We’d get frustrated and say we were done and no longer wanted to fight, but it had become part of our nature. I’d reached a point where I couldn’t trust him with anything anymore and he’d reached a point where he started debating if I was worth the effort anymore. We both wondered if we’d ever be happy again and learned that we probably wouldn’t. Sometimes there’s too much damage to fix and we really wondered if it was worth knocking down the whole building to try rebuilding. We determined regardless of what new materials we used, even if they were the highest possible quality, the foundation was too deteriorated. Now we’re stuck in a lease trying to figure out where to go from here.

The real loss isn’t even that he hurt me, because when he says it was unintentional, I believe him. I don’t want to believe him because I don’t want to get hurt anymore. He’s made many changes and shown he wants this to work, but we both agreed it would be a huge risk for me and perhaps he’s not as ready as he thought for a relationship this serious. It’s a shame, because I love him and I know I’ll never love anyone the way I love him. Everything is different with him.

Andie wrote “I lost the only guy I ever really cared about” and that’s probably the most accurate and relatable part of her article. I wasn’t expecting to fall in love when I met him, but I did and now I genuinely don’t know how to move forward in my life without him standing behind me. Daniel, I really wish we could fix this, but I hid in cowardice and convinced myself you didn’t want to be with me, you didn’t care about me because it was easier than trying to work through things. It felt safer than admitting I loved you enough that I would be willing to get hurt again if it meant you might look at me like I’m magic again.


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