I dumped my boyfriend on Valentine’s Day
It was awful
When just a naive undergraduate I dated a very lovely guy, who happened to be closeted to his family. Most people within the LGBT* community will have the experience of dating somebody who cannot come out because of their family and their religion.
Initially I didn’t see a problem with having a boyfriend who was out to a select few. But this is exactly what led me to breaking up with him on the most romantic day of the year.
We were three months into our relationship and went to the Valentine’s social at our favourite gay club on the 13th February. After a ridiculous number of trebles and shots of tequila, we ended up kissing on the dancefloor.
Not an issue in a gay club at all. That was until the club photographer took a photo of us necking-on. My boyfriend went ballistic and charged off to find the photographer, leaving me stood on my own looking like a mug.
I took myself off to the bar to order another drink and to try and figure out what had just happened. My boyfriend came back, with a relieved look on his face – he’d convinced the photographer to delete the picture.
Rather than handling this with grace and decorum, I flipped and we had a huge row and I stormed off to the smoking area. My boyfriend came to find me half an hour later, to say he was going home. I didn’t even bother to say goodbye. In hindsight I blew the whole thing out of proportion.
The next day I didn’t wake up to the apology text I wanted but did have a stinking hangover.
We’d planned to have dinner together at his place that evening, but I had no intention of being the one to text first. This resolve broke about 4pm when I was starving and needed to know whether I should get ready or not. He told me to come to his for 6pm.
I arrived at his house and greeted him quite frostily. No sooner had I sat down that he started to explain what happened. He needed me to understand that we couldn’t have a relationship that could be plastered all over Facebook, or one where we could hold hands in the street – we would have to be closeted.
As someone who has spent the majority of his life in the closet only to realise that being out and proud is a great sensation, I wasn’t prepared to live like this. In a moment of verbal diarrhoea, before I could even really process what I wanted to say, I said “I can’t do this anymore”.
My reasoning was simple, as much as I felt for him, I loved me more. I didn’t want to have a secret relationship, I wanted to celebrate. I couldn’t handle being with someone who had to do that, I wasn’t strong enough, and he deserved somebody who could support him.
Perhaps it would have been kinder to have broken up with him on another day. But leaving him on any other day I’d have been a hypocrite – to pretend we were fine when we weren’t all for the sake of a date in the calendar, would have been a lie.
I wanted to leave but he insisted I stay. He then proceeded to present me with a three course dinner, featuring all my favourite foods, which we ate in relative silence. He was dignified and didn’t shed a tear. I on the other hand when I’ve been dumped have balled like a baby.
It’s been turned into a big song and dance by my friends rather than being seen as a dignified ending. When people hear the story, they usually judge me as a selfish little bitch. Maybe I was, but I think most 19-year-olds are.
We promised we’d stay friends and we’re better friends now than we were when we were boyfriends. Hopefully that’ll stay the same if he reads this article.