~Wednesday, May 02, 2007


The following Friday went by much like most other Friday nights: drinking beer, eating nachos, and singing karaoke while flirting shamelessly with the emcee. Only this time, the circle of friends I managed to create in the past few months since my falling out with E came into the city and partied with me. 10 people drove into the city just to hang out with me. I felt so special that so many people would do something like that just because it makes me happy.

On the way home I called Jack, like I do most Friday nights. He was watching a movie with his roommates, but he said he could spare five minutes to sit with me while make my way home.

He asked what I did that night.

"The same thing I do every Friday."

"I don't know what that is."

"Yes, you do!"

"I don't know your schedule."

"Yes, you do. Every Friday is karaoke!"

He played dumb, but he had to know exactly what was going on. He knows that karaoke is my thing. He's called me in the middle of it and heard me go on and on about how happy it makes me. I ignored this and went on to tell him about my night and how special I felt when he began to get upset.

He wanted to know why he wasn't invited. Why everyone in our group was invited except for him. I responded that I assumed he would know where I was and if he was interested in going, he would have told me. He actually had until 3:30 that afternoon to get my plans for the weekend and he didn't. Over the IM system I typed, "I'm busy for most of the weekend, but do you want to try for something Sunday afternoon?" He agreed and my plans were set.

Jack accused me of deliberately withholding my weekend plans from him to hurt him, but it wasn't about him at all. His name didn't even come up once. All we did was talk about my birthday party on Saturday--the one he already said he wasn't going to. Then Jack accused me of pushing him back until Sunday.

I began to laugh; I didn't think Jack was serious. He's the one who opted out of my birthday party, so it was really his decision to not see me Saturday night. And he knows what I do on Fridays; everyone does. Even my coworkers know. My laughing at Jack and not acknowledging his complaints angered him even more.

"Can I really not just tell you about my night?" I asked.

"No," he huffed. "Go ahead."

I began again with how good I felt about everyone coming out and he again got upset. "I thought you would want to hear about how special I felt!"

"Imagine how not-special I feel knowing that EVERYONE was out and not one person invited me! You know how I am about invites!"

"But you know what I do on Fridays. It was so hard to get you to come out the one time."

"You know the reasons for that. And you keep throwing it in my face that everyone was out."

"No! I thought you would want to be happy for me! I didn't call you to fight with you or to hurt you!"

Finally I conceded and asked why he was upset, but he didn't want to tell me after I cut him off. I asked him one more time and again he was short. Pride keeps me from begging, so I became short too while I tried to hold my temper and I told him I would talk to him tomorrow and hung up.

It was around 2 a.m., but I called Helen anyway, who was equally as shocked that Jack was once again mad at me. I even heard Harvey's husband in the background defend me. Helen agreed he was being a complete girl over the whole thing. That he should know better about where I was. That he likes to twist things and make himself the victim. She was proud of me for refusing to acknowledge his anger and for sticking up for myself the way I did. Alcohol and the previous Friday helped, I'm sure. I was over crying for Jack.

Helen was on the phone with me while both Harvey and her husband shouted consenting opinions in the background when my phone beeped. To my disbelief, Jack was calling back. I waved Helen of the line and then clicked over cheerfully. It took him aback: the tone of my voice. Jack knew he hadn't ruined my mood.

It was Jack's tone that had totally changed. He said he wasn't watching the movie anymore and that he had been thinking. He said he was real jerk to me and he doesn't know why he gives me such a hard time. He's criticized me and made me cry. He still catches himself criticizing me. He said he knew that I didn't call him that night to fight with him or throw anything in his face. Jack said he knew this because I had no idea why he was upset, because my initial response was laughter. He was the one to completely concede and it meant so much to me for him to acknowledge any of these things, much less all of them at once.

And after the really great speech that I wish I had written down word for word, Jack then segued into how he still felt validated for being upset. he said he's big on the invitation--and I know that--and he was really hurt that he didn't get one from me nor the other 10 people that came. While I said I couldn't speak for anyone else, and he has no right to be mad at me for anyone else's action, the reason I didn't invite him was because I was trying to give him his space. I assumed he knew where I was going and he never said anything. I told him I didn't feel comfortable asking him because I didn't want to pressure him.

Jack didn't know why I felt he needed space and I was honest. I told him I heard him back-pedaling on the phone that Thursday. I told him I heard, "I don't want to go to your birthday party, I don't want to see you, and I don't want to talk to you either." Jack admitted he felt claustrophobic that week and that he said things a lot harsher than he should have. I blinked as I got another apology out of him. Then he re-explained things a lot easier to swallow. He said the same thing Helen speculated: there will be the occasional weekend, like Easter, when we'll both be too busy and it should be okay to not see each other. When he said it gently like that, I wholeheartedly agreed.

Jack said he couldn't figure me out and the things I do. And that was exactly my goal. I never set out to hurt him, but I was playing the game, letting him know under no uncertain terms that I will not wait around.

He said in the future, I should always invite him him and let him decide whether he wants to go or not. Again I stood up for myself and said that it doesn't work that way; it's not fair to always have me doing the inviting and he agreed. Jack said he knows he's a difficult person to get along with and he feels like he should apologize for it. He was tender with me for the first time in weeks and I think it's all because I stood up for myself. That's what Jack needs--to be put in his place. To not get away with anything. He changed his tone when someone isn't buying his bullshit.


Anonymous said...

i don't. i actually think you should have invited him. i've been in the situation way too many times when people just assume i wouldn't go or that i'd invite myself and it always hurts my feelings.

Sask Mom said...

You know, he sounds like an ass. I think as soon as he lulls you in, he will start acting the same way again. I don't think he is going to change, and he will just get worse. Good for you for keeping your distance, don't fall for this guy. I don't think it will get any better. I just have a hinky feeling about him and it makes me nervous. Which is weird, since I don't REALLY know him at all! Or you. Strange. Anyway, I just felt like I needed to warn you, or something. Be careful!

Sarah said...

Kate- That's the reason I have comments turned on, to get others' opinions. There were two reasons I didn't: I didn't want to look clingy or needy by inviting him--I was still reacting from his previous phone call--and also because I was playing the game.

Sask Mom- You're right. He's not The One. I'm just biding my time with him. I detached from the idea of him when I cried that Good Friday. I have my eyes open for other distractions in the meantime!

Anonymous said...

if you know he is not the one and you are detached from the idea of him, then why are you still talking to/seeing him? its not like he's any fun so its really not worth it. you need to break it off and look for other guys, not as a distraction, but as real options

Single Girl said...

I have to agree with anonymous. If he's not "The One," why waste your time with him? Better to spend your time on energy on someone else who could have potential or just on yourself. I think he's trying, but in my opinion, it's too late, he's already shown you his really bad side and it's not an easy to handle bad side. In the end, it's up to you though, and you're the one in the situation, not me.

Jen said...

I am happy that he finally admitted that he was/is acting like a jackass. I think you need to get rid of this guy...and fast.

Drama Queen said...

Sorry but I agree with everyone, mainly Mom. I don't think he will change, I think his speech was a reflex action to the distance you created, I don't think he can maintain it nor do I believe you can maintain the game he is forcing you to play.

You should move on. He’s just too much work.

M said...

He sounds a bit immature to tell you the truth. I hope he provides some fun in the meanwhile though cause it sounds like he would be agonising to have an actual relationship with.

HomeImprovementNinja said...

Yeah, if you don't see a future with him, you should cut him loose. Otherwise, you'll meet someone else and not give them a chance because you're involved. It happened to me. I was in break up/get back mode with my ex when I met someone at a party. I didn't get her number because I was dating someone (even though it didn't look like it was working out) and by the time the relationship ended a few months later, it was too late.

Sarah said...

Anonymous- I do things in my own time. I'll move on when I get bored.

Single Girl- I still find the psychology of how he works interesting. How he reacts to things, etc. I'm guessing I'll move on when that starts to bore me.

Jen- It really meant a lot to me to hear him admit that. It proved that I wasn't going crazy or thinking unrealistically.

Drama Queen- I will. I just have to do things in my own time.

M- He is so intelligent and we talk on the phone for hours and hours about books, poetry, and philosophy. I really enjoy that.

HomeImprovementNinja- I already did that with two others when I first met Jack and things were really good. I'm currently in the process of working others back into the mix.

dont eat token said...

*Amen* !! (on last sentence)

I love your new tagline on the header.

Just to be a shit, he didn't invite you to his movie night either. But you already covered that, that you don't need to be the one doing all the inviting, all the time.

Lil Bit said...

Woo hoo to the friends coming into town to hang w/ya!! (that's the really good positive in all of this, I'm thinking)

... and your bday is coming up??
Happy early Birrrrthday, girl!

Have a great celebratory w/e!

*lil bday spank*
LOL! sorry, couldn't resist ;)


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