Wednesday, September 22, 2010

"I just need five minutes"


This is the text message and voicemail and email I received over and over again Tuesday from an old S/O, Jason. Last time I heard from Jason, he had his current girlfriend call me for advice on how to treat him right. [dramatic pause] Prior to that, he called for the obligatory TapBack check-in. And before that, his fiancée (number 5 or 6) broke up with him the night before the wedding by putting a post-it note on his door and fleeing the island. I tell you this to say, I really didn't want to take his call. As a matter of fact, if I hadn't been on one call hanging up when the other call rung through, I would have avoided it all together.

"Hey girl."
[Silent eye-roll] What's up Jason?
"Not much."
"You said you needed five minutes?"
"Yeah, you good?"
"Great, but really busy so..."
"Can you chat a brother up for a minute?"
"It'll cut into your five but sure. How's Denver?"
"I'm in Boston now."
"Well good for you. How's your mom?"
"She said she talked to you last month."
"True, I take it she's still well?"
"She's great. You really don't want to make small talk do you?"
[Silence on my end.]
"Fine. Can you remind me what I did wrong again?"
"When?"
"When we were together."
"Over 15 years ago?!"
"Well. Yes."
"You were an adventure junkie, control freak who wanted a robot with ladyparts who would bow, curtsy and say yes sir."
"I wasn't an adventure junkie."
"Ooo-kay." [He was an undercover drug agent who kept volunteering for the assignments no one else wanted]
"So you're saying you didn't feel respected."
To say the least. "I felt disrespected, smothered, irritated and tired. But this is a long time ago. Why are you asking now?"
"I was told to find out where my best relationship went off the rails and figure out how to get back on track."
I heard some life coach speak in there but I didn't want to pry. "Well, now you know."
"But I really don't agree."
[Gritted teeth] "This is the problem right here. I told you how I felt. You don't get to agree or disagree. You can accept it or ignore it but my feelings are my own."
"I was good to you."
"You're not listening."
"This last girl says you broke me and I can't be fixed until you forgive me and release me."
This last girl? Is that how were referring to the significant other? "Your new girlfriend is a psychiatrist? Relationship counselor?"
"Life coach, how did you know?"
[Side-eye to phone] "I forgive you, I release you."
"Seriously, just like that?"
"I'm not the one still invested. You keep circling back around to me. So sure, fly and be free."
"Are you seeing somebody?"
"Bye Jason. Good luck with the new one." *CLICK*

First of all, I love it when I no longer gibbadam and can be dispassionate about the whole thing. Secondly, is it truly possibly that some people just never learn? I mean if you keep hearing the same complaint about yourself time after time, wouldn't you start to wonder if it had merit? Do you have an ex that you just can't get rid of? Thoughts, comments, insights... the floor is yours.

47 comments:

Melzie said...

Dang, fifteen years later, he needs to move the freak on and grow up. I always find it funny when folks try to ease back in your life after they've done you wrong. Like you said, indifference is a strong and effective weapon.

Crystal said...

"This last girl says you broke me and I can't be fixed until you forgive me and release me." Seriously?!!!?!? First, anyone can become a life-coach. You do not have to go through lengthy training/education or even get licensed to become a life-coach (not to offend any life coaches or people who go to them) But take the "analysis" with a grain of salt (also I know this because 1) research, I was thinking of going to one and 2) Speaking with my sister a psychologist and my Psychiatrist Dr. Park (I have just put myself out there, yes, black people do go to therapy, and not just because we are crazy men on the street with serious psychosis. I myself have been going for depression/grief, due to losing my mom, my rock, to pancreatic cancer. BTW I am feeling great now. Therapy works, perhaps this is why I am not an angry black woman, but a sunny and optimistic one... end rant) Second, forgiveness, though it can be good for those who've done wrong, is really for the person who was wronged, so they can take control, let go and move on. Forgiveness is about having inner peace and the only person who can give any of us inner peace is ourselves. Old dude's GF just gave him some horrible advice. How about he take responsibility for his actions and apologize to you and forgive himself so he can release himself from his past and learn, grow and cultivate a real, loving relationship with reciprocity!!!! (Like I said, REAL therapy works!!!)

BrendaKay said...

I get the whole concept of forgiving, it's very important to our inner growth. But the "release me" bit, sounds like something you would hear on the Hallmark channel.

ConvertingMe said...

I have an ex, T. who is the very same way.

Dude, its been ten years.

Why you send me FB messages like "I have been thinking about you and wish that all is well. I look at your picture and wonder what it would have been like it we were still together."

When I figure out how to shake T. I'll let you know, cause at this point nothing short of Jedi mind tricks seem sufficient.

FlirtyNerd said...

I think most people have the ex that won't go away, and if they don't, then they ARE the ex that won't go away.

I definitely have the Pest Ex. I've even blocked his text messages (can't block phone calls on Sprint...le boo!), but he does have the rejection ringtone. We have to know when to let people go and not tiptoe back into each other's lives because that causes too much confusion. Sometimes you just can't be friends and both parties involved are better off when they come to that realization. It's not about burning bridges. It's not about bad feelings. It's about acceptance of the end of someone's season in your life and moving on.

rozb said...

Life coaches used to be called motivational speakers, right? Reminds me of that Chris Farley SNL character who was a motivational speaker who lived in a van down by the river. Take their advice with a grain of salt and the margarita. Many of us here could be called Life Coaches, with all the great advice that can get doled out here!

Geesh. Some folks just try anything to stay relevant in your life. How did you keep a straight face, Chele, and not holler out "Boy Bye!"

GrownAzzMan said...

There is gold in them thar hills. "This is the problem right here. I told you how I felt. You don't get to agree or disagree. You can accept it or ignore it but my feelings are my own."
When will grown people learn what this really means?

GrownAzzMan said...

I don't like burning bridges but I strongly believe in closing and locking doors. Being friends after a break up that was not mutually amicable is destined to fail. Often people accept being 'friends' as a way to stay alive in the game with the hope of inject unneeded salt at strategic moments.

FlirtyNerd said...

Or unneeded (unwanted, undesired, whichever...) sex.

Just being real...

baileyqc said...

Clicked the thinks back about Jason stories - girl, wow. I keep forgetting just how exciting your relationships have been - ha!
Did you ask Jason what happened to the girl who called you? Or the post-it note chick?

Rob said...

*sticks head in* I'm guilty of the "can I have 5 minutes" ruse to get someone to answer the phone knowing I need to bend her ear and yes, generally, I'm about to beg. (In a gentlemanly dignified way)
Look, there's no cool Jackson 5 way to plead "I want you back"
Clearly after all these years, dude still trying.

Citizen Ojo said...

What a Lame... He must be the biggest herb out here. How are you going to call and ask that question. Anytime a relationship ends you should know what went wrong. Good think he is with a Life Coach now because she will never let him forget why he's screwing up.

datdudeincali said...

Even I, notorious for attempting to reach 10 years in the past for TapBack, would know better than to try this one.

datdudeincali said...

Or they wait for the weak moment to provide a shoulder... which leads to other body parts.

LikeLena said...

Though it's a simple conversation, a lot can be learned out of there if folks care to listen.
This, I think, it what's wrong with a lot of relationships. One person is talking but the other person is so focused on their agenda that they completely missed the point.

Mr. Skyywalker said...

And that right there is the Game. That's why you need to keep your s/o close and the exes far away.

MariSol said...

Just clicked on TapBack under Bougie Topics - I love this term! T-shirt needed: Beware the TapBack

Swtrthanhunee said...

Been reading these for a while and I guess this one hit close to home so I had to respond. I just can't believe he called you with the blame game and he's the one with what... 5 BROKEN ENGAGEMENTS. Im gonna have to go with Jason needs to take a look at the man in the mirror. Life coach? Please!!!
If she was any good at her job she would be referring him to a psych professional and realize that she is facing relationship doom...he was broke before you ever got there and it has been over a decade, GET REAL...He's calling you, he needs to release the damn phone and forget your number...I truly don't understand his response, if he didn't want the truth he shouldn't have called...

From personal experience, I found that most of the time the exes that won't go away are the ones that realize they screwed up by letting you go, take it as a compliment and confirmation that you are a good woman as you ignore his calls and move on with the man who is deserving. And ditto on the ability to be dispassionate, it is a great feeling

ASmith said...

#nahsuh.

Homeboy wanted you to say he was right in the WORST way. How can you treat me all kinds of crazy and then want me to validate that mess? Again. #nahsuh.

I was confused on whether or not the life coach is currently his boo, but I sure hope not. Otherwise, I'd have to question her credentials.

Evansaw said...

That guy is a moron. Nothing more to say.

CaliGirlED said...

Had that happen recently. However after I gave him the 5 minutes he asked for, I'm sure he wanted to give them right back! Not quite what he thought it was going to be. The theme of the 5 minutes, "If you don't want to be called a Playa, then stop displaying Playa characteristics!"

OneChele said...

Agreed.

OneChele said...

Yeah um - 10 year TapBack no bueno.

CaliGirlED said...

Life coach is his Boo, probably has no credentials, just life experiences that she obviously didn't learn much from, based on the advice she gave him.

OneChele said...

I already heard from mutual friends that he's repeating the same old pattern.

OneChele said...

Some folks never learn apparently.

MariSol said...

LMAO - Was thinking his new girl has watched one Lifetime movie too many.

OneChele said...

And you would think after lo these many years that some version of therapy would have crossed his mind.

OneChele said...

The wonder of gibbadamness.

Miss-Devin Kemp said...

I just had an ex s/o try that about 2 months ago, asking me "You're a Christian. Doesn't that mean you're supposed to forgive and forget?" Forgive? Yes. Forget? Heckie naw, ninja! It's called learning from your mistakes...not banging your head against a wall for repeating them over and over again!

Suebhoney1125 said...

I think the lifecoach needs a lifecoach. He is a hot a-mess! seriously, he needs extensive professional help. Anyone with what ? 5-6 fiance's and never made to the altar. One left his "Dear Jason" letter on a post-it? and then GOT OFF THE ISLAND! Chele girl I say you definitely dodged a bullet. 15 years-Damn you are probably the only one he could get to give him five minutes and he only got by accident.

Stank_0 said...

I have to say when I read the title, I thought this was going in a completely different direction. #Mindinthegutter #pro-nooner

I have to say I'm lucky in this regard. Any woman I've "dealt" with in past has stayed on good terms. However, most of the activities in those relationships were of the laying down kind.

GrownAzzMan said...

After 10 years is that a tapback or a fresh start? I am never one to go back so I need some clarification. What's the statute of limitations on this?

OneChele said...

You are the 5th (FIF) guy to tell me that they thought this was a post in favor of quickies. Y'all nasty.

datdudeincali said...

I'll need to check the official Man Law book and get back to you.

Penny said...

Cue Patti LaBelle from her rendition of "If You Don't Know Me By Now..." "And you say to yourself, self, is it me??"

GrownAzzMan said...

Chele, I think the number is much higher...LOL Some of us thought it and didn't say it.

rozb said...

Ha!

CaliGirlED said...

I think it's situational. My ex from 10 years ago hasn't changed much, that would be a tapback. But someone you were with 10 years ago, who is now in a better place, that could be a fresh start.

The_A said...

sister had a dude who would call on a regular basis just to check in aka catch her during a weak moment. For.Years.

I started calling him "Holiday Man" because it looked like every time another Federal Holiday rolled around, here comes buddyboy with the "Do you love me yets?"

I'm going to have to repossess his Most Pathetic Crown. Does Jason have a mailing address?

Sigh. Life coaches are taking a big hit with this post. Buyer beware.

Rose M. Smith said...

I agree! She sounds like a "life coach" that either read Life Coaching for Dummies or she took Life Coaching 101 on the web.

blackprofessor said...

I don't think there is anything wrong with asking for forgiveness when you feel like you hurt someone, that takes maturity, security and humility. If he were trying to own up to his ish then and apologize now, I would give him kudos and respect that. It sounds like he was trying to dip his toe back in the water and that is where he failed big time.

YardieChicie said...

Do you have an ex that you just can't get rid of?

Me? No, thank you Christ. My friend? Unfortunately, yes. Close to 5 years and he's still 'checking in', or trying to. After the 5th time your call went ignored, how much more of a hint do you need? Damn!

YardieChicie said...

Man, I hate when they try to use your faith to wiggle back into your life - usually with bullshiggity still firmly in place! "Forgive and forget" is not the same as "roll over and take it like a moron yet again". They need to learn that!

Karen Caffee said...

First: great!
Second: yep...

Karen Caffee said...

It's an occupational hazard for the profession (I used to date one and couldn't get over the thought of one scary 'trip' before another popped up, in spite of the toe-curling reunions).

Angela Deruise Roby said...

Yes! There have been many a' time of "Fly! Be Free! NEGRO leave ME be!!!!"

One day I will share "the hospital story" with you. The overview was my god daughter was being born the same night an Ex SO mom was being checked into the hospital. Jesus take the wheel on that night bc I was TOO through with life.


15 years? One of two things are happening here. Either you have the lucky to attact crazy in the past and it keeps coming back....or you have a gold plated, uh, situation.

Not mad at ya, either way. :)

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