Loving Someone You Can’t Have: 15 Ways to Handle the Pain

There are only a few things more agonizing than being in love with someone you can’t have. How can you deal with this kind of pain? Here are 15 ways.

Whether the person you secretly love is your best friend’s fiancée, your boss’s crush, or your close friend who’s clearly in love with someone else, there’s no escaping the pain of being with them and knowing that you can never have them. Whenever they’re around, you get consumed by your efforts to conceal your emotions, hoping that the way you stare at them won’t give away your real feelings. There are times when you ask yourself why you’re subjecting yourself to this kind of torture. And the answer is quite simple: they bring you joy.

How to handle the pain of loving someone you can’t have

Maybe you’ve decided that it’s better to be with someone you really love, even if you can never have them, than not have them in your life in any way. If that’s your decision, then there’s nothing much you can do, except handle the pain that goes with it. Here are some tips on coping with the pain of loving someone you can’t have.

Be cool

If you are still hanging around because you hope that the two of you will be together one day, or you’re still enjoying the happiness the person brings, even with all the pain, here are the things you can do to cope.

#1 Enjoy your time together, but don’t ask for anything more. Condition your mind to only focus on the good times and forget the rest. Don’t demand anything more than what’s given to you, because it’s likely that they’ll say no. If you’re going out to grab some coffee, enjoy those moments. Who cares if they’re going to be with their partner afterward? Not you! Acknowledge the pain, but focus on the good times.

#2 Do not ask questions that could hurt you. Asking questions that run along the lines of “Did you ever love me?” and “Am I not good enough?” will just hurt you, or cause tension in your relationship. The goal is to avoid pain, so it’s counterproductive to seek answers to these questions.

#3 Divert your attention to hobbies. Spending too much time analyzing your feelings? Roll your sleeves up and get a new hobby—right now. Just get out of bed, go to a craft shop—or wherever else you can—and get your hands movin’. Not only will this temporarily help you ease the pain, it will also make you more creative—and creativity is always a good thing. Imagine how many paintings or hats you’d make by the end of the year, if you just use the time you spend on self-pity wisely?

#4 Be a real friend, but protect your feelings. Of course, you want to be their crying shoulder. But when it comes to unrequited love, and you’re on the losing end, don’t give your all. Make sure that you’re comforting them without crushing your heart. It’s okay to listen to them talk about their frustrations with the person they love, but it’s another thing if that’s all you talk about and you’re even helping them plot the perfect surprise party for their beloved.

#5 Be surrounded by friends. During times of emotional turmoil, you need the loving arms, sound advice, and truckloads of craziness of your best buds. There’s nothing like pondering and laughing about your situation over a couple of beers. I am sure they’ve all had similar experiences, and would be very much willing to share some tips. Say “cheers” and laugh it off, at least for one night!

#6 Stay away from hurtful situations. If you know that they’re going to be with their partner at a party, don’t show up. Why would you? It’s like committing suicide. Simply decline their invitation and be at peace. Sleeping all day or binge watching your favorite TV show are so much better than seeing the person you love with somebody else

#7 Learn to compartmentalize. To cope with emotional turmoil, you have to learn how to compartmentalize. When you’re with the person you adore, be with them 100%. But make sure that when you’re working or doing something else, your mind is not wrapped around them. It takes a lot of practice, but it can be done.

#8 Devote 30 minutes every day to sulk. Set a specific time in your day to just be sentimental about your one-sided love affair. Don’t let thoughts about your beloved consume you all the time; when the thought pops in your head, tell yourself that you can only think about it from 6:00-6:30. It sounds like a crazy idea, but it’s effective!

Cool isn’t an option

Perhaps some time has passed, yet you’re still stuck in the same situation. You want things to change, or you’d rather be left alone. Here are some things you can do to eliminate and even totally get rid of the pain.

#9 Stop pretending you’re okay. If you’re really in pain, you don’t have to pretend you’re okay. Not anymore. You’ve been dealing with this for months *or years* and it is exhausting to put on a fake smile all the time.

Tell them you can’t be with them while they shop for their lover’s gift because it hurts you. Don’t laugh or smile if you really don’t feel like doing those things, either. You are entitled to express your real feelings, just like they’re entitled to theirs.

#10 Limit contact as much as possible. Yes, even if seeing them makes you “happy” on the surface. You must learn to turn away from something that only gives you temporary happiness and be okay with missing out, because here’s something you should know: if it causes you distress, you’re not missing anything! Do yourself a favor and protect your emotions.

#11 Date other people. Why not? Don’t be scared that you’ll lose the tiniest chance of having the person you can’t have. You’re the only one being sentimental about it. Trust me, they’ll even be genuinely happy for you. If they actually like you, but have been too afraid to make a move, this may give them a push to finally do so.

#12 Hide them from your feeds. You always want to see them and find out what they’re doing—that’s why you added them on Facebook. But then you also see them cuddling with their sweetheart. Ah, those photos can make you bleed! Once and for all, hide them from your timeline. They’re like an addiction. You have to cut them out of your life, by all means.

#13 Write about your feelings. Writing about our feelings can give us a clearer view of what we’re going through. This is a well-known therapy technique that won’t cost you a dime. This has the same effect as a prayer. What makes this better is that you can actually re-read what you’ve written, so you can assess yourself better. This serves as a great proof of just how crazy you are being!

#14 Write a letter to yourself. After writing about your feelings, it’s time to write a letter to yourself. Yes, it may sound cheesy, but it’s one effective way to regain your self-esteem and forgive yourself. It can help you reconnect with yourself, so you can face reality, and make new plans for your life.

#15 Finally, tell them what you feel without expecting anything. It will relieve you of all the self-inflicted tension you’ve built up over time. Simply inform them that you like them, but know you can’t have them. This will liberate you, as long as you ensure that you’re not doing this to get sympathy or love.

Be advised: if confessing your feelings would put you and your beloved in danger *i.e. if you’re in love with your future sister-in-law*, forget it. It’s not worth the trouble. Just deal with it on your own.

It’s painful to love someone you can’t have, but don’t let it take over your life. Sure, allow yourself to sulk for a time, but after that, dust off your sorrows and toughen up a little *or a lot*. When all is said and done, you’ll be glad you took care of your heart and sanity using these tips, even when in love, because those are the things that only you can protect.

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16 Quotes About Unrequited Love That Are SO Accurate, It Hurts

The French expression “la douleur exquise” literally translates to “the exquisite pain,” and refers to the pain of wanting someone you can’t have. TBH, I don’t think there’s a more eloquent, accurate way to describe the experience of a one-sided romance. But there are also numerous quotes about unrequited love that perfectly capture the agony involved.

If you caught feels for someone who doesn’t reciprocate said feels, take comfort in this: Unrequited love is so common that you can read about it in countless classic novels, hear multiple multi-platinum pop stars sing about it in current hit songs, and even watch contestants on The Bachelor and The Bachelorette deal with it IRL. In fact, a 2014 study published in the journal SAGE Open, which analyzed music over the last 40 years, found that a sizable portion of the lyrics in popular songs referred to unrequited love and romantic rejection.

When you love someone who doesn’t love you back, you may find yourself teetering between optimism that your crush will eventually feel the same way, and despair that they don’t. Longing for the unattainable can leave you feeling confused, lost, vulnerable, disheartened, and everything in between. But each and every experience with love — even, and especially, the ones that don’t end with a happily ever after — presents a learning opportunity. So, the best thing you can do is allow yourself to feel the complete spectrum of your emotions, and trust that eventually you’ll be able to glean some shred of wisdom from your one-sided romance.

Quotes about unrequited love can be hopeful — or capture the despair and the heartache.

Shutterstock

Knowing that you’re not alone in your heartache obviously won’t take away the pain that comes with unrequited love, but it can help to ease it somewhat. So, whether you’ve found yourself in the dreaded friend zone, or the object of your affection is inconveniently in a relationship with someone else, refer to these quotes for a quick hit of much-needed commiseration, reassurance, and hope.

1. “In the arithmetic of love, one plus one equals everything, and two minus one equals nothing.” — Mignon McLaughlin

2. “Love is never lost. If not reciprocated, it will flow back and soften and purify the heart.” — Washington Irving

3. “To burn with desire and keep quiet about it is the greatest punishment we can bring on ourselves.” — Federico García Lorca

4. “When you loved someone and had to let them go, there will always be that small part of yourself that whispers, “What was it that you wanted and why didn’t you fight for it?”― Shannon L. Alder

5. “It’s wicked to throw away so many good gifts because you can’t have the one you want.” ― Louisa May Alcott

6. “The worst feeling is falling for someone and knowing that they won’t be there to catch you.” — Rashida Rowe

7. “Living with someone you love can be lonelier than living entirely alone, if the one that you love doesn’t love you.” ― Tennessee Williams

8. “Too many of us are hung up on what we don’t have, can’t have, or won’t ever have.” ― Terry McMillan

Reading quotes about unrequited love may offer some much-needed reassurance and commiseration.

Shutterstock

9. “When you love something, you have to make sure it loves you back, or you’ll bring about no end of trouble chasing it.” — Patrick Rothfuss

10. “An unrequited love is so much better than a real one … As long as something is never even started, you never have to worry about it ending.” — Sarah Dessen

11. “A person doesn’t know true hurt and suffering until they’ve felt the pain of falling in love with someone whose affections lie elsewhere.” ― Rose Gordon

12. “Because, if you could love someone, and keep loving them, without being loved back … then that love had to be real. It hurt too much to be anything else.” — Sarah Cross

13. “The heart is stubborn. It holds onto love despite what sense and emotion tells it. And it is often, in the battle of those three, the most brilliant of all.” — Alessandra Torre

14. “Sometimes no matter how many eyelashes or dandelion seeds you blow, no matter how much of your heart you tear out and slap on your sleeve, it just ain’t gonna happen.” ― Melissa Jensen

15. “There comes a time in your life when you have to choose to turn the page, write another book or simply close it.”― Shannon L. Alder

16. “Let no one who loves be called unhappy. Even love unreturned has its rainbow.” — James Matthew Barrison

 

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How To Deal With Sadness Around The Holidays, According To Experts

“Hey, We’re all here for you.”

If there were ever a time of year that energy hangs heaviest and most potently on humanity, it would probably be the holiday season. If you feel sad during the holidays, even knowing that it’s a common experience doesn’t always make the ache dissipate. But there are simple things you can do to cope that might make the twinkling lights and constant carols easier to bear if you’re in the midst of a rough time internally.

“Holidays may serve as a strong reminder that things in our life are not quite where we want or expect them to be,” Dr Victoria Chialy Smith, a licensed clinical psychologist in private practice, tells Bustle. “We may feel a wide variety of emotions including longing, regret, anger, sadness, and depression.”

Smith says the unresolved feelings the holidays can evoke are understandable. Perhaps you’ve experienced loss that feels particularly hard this time of year, or the financial expectations of the season leave you feeling you stressed and self-critical. Smith says to first and foremost give yourself permission to feel the sadness and heavy feelings. There is no need to get on your own case about not being full of cheer and serenity.

“Meet all of these difficult emotions with compassion,” Smith says, and think about doing that by staying grounded in the present when you start getting a wave of old memories, regrets, longings, or difficult emotions. “Try to stay connected to the peace of the present moment by tuning into your breath or what is immediately going on around you,” she says.

Dr. Jo Eckler, a chronic illness coach, clinical psychologist, and author of I Can’t Fix You Because You’re Not Broken: The Eight Keys to Freeing Yourself from Painful Thoughts and Feelings tells Bustle something similar. Don’t squash down the feelings you’re having, and don’t feel the need to act like your blood is made of glitter when you’re actually feeling bummed. You don’t have to pretend.

Eckler also points out that this time of year is “a ripe time for the comparison trap.” Disengage from compare and despair behaviors, though, friends, be it on social media, in conversation, or just in your own head as you walk through the holiday markets, feeling a bit glum.

“We see images of families laughing together in handmade matching PJ’s and frolicking, or super lovey-dovey couples,” Eckler says. “And even though we might have good families or partners ourselves, it’s hard to live up to a posed picture.”

 

As for the expectation to get on board the holiday activity train? Well, especially if parties, gatherings, and celebrations feel triggering, there is certainly no need for you to be the belle of each holiday ball. But that said, isolation is something you want to avoid when you’re dealing with sadness or symptoms of depression, Dr. Rebecca Cowan, of Anchor Counseling & Wellness, LLC, tells Bustle.

“When people become sad and depressed, they tend to want to isolate, and this only worsens these symptoms,” Cowan says. “Balance is key, and so is implementing a self-care plan.”

That means things like sleeping, eating enough, sharing with friends, doing things that make you feel relaxed and happy, and Cowan says, getting some sunlight. At least 30 minutes a day.

Counselor Jessica Eiseman, based out of Texas, tells Bustle that it can also be helpful to begin to create your own traditions, to make the holidays something you can enjoy. She brings up the term “un-holidays.”

“Maybe you don’t fit into traditional standards or expectations for the season,” Eiseman says. “Maybe you don’t celebrate at all or you take a trip by yourself. The most important piece being that you create some meaning based on what you enjoy and brings a little peace, if not happiness.”

Eiseman also says that if you aren’t already, visiting a therapist can be really helpful. And if the feelings seem to be worsening, or they are affecting things like your appetite and ability to sleep, do reach out for professional help as soon as possible.

And remember, it’s really OK to feel the heaviness this time of year. It’s palpable, and we are sensitive creatures! Just do what you can to take care of you. Consider it a holiday gift to yourself.

 

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Prova – Boycott

I wasn’t going to run this, but fuck you, Prova.

Boycott

[ˈboiˌkät]

VERB

1.withdraw from commercial or social relations with (a country, organization, or person) as a punishment or protest.

synonyms: spurn · snub · shun · avoid · abstain from · wash one’s hands of

NOUN

1.a punitive ban that forbids relations with certain groups, cooperation with a policy, or the handling of goods.

synonyms: ban · veto · embargo · prohibition · sanction · restriction · avoidance

 

Anytime I end up covering a Saturday for Summer at the salon I usually walk around the corner to see Prova at the bar where she works.

I specifically go there to see her. We’ve both been working a lot and busy with our lives. I haven’t hung out with her in a few months. The last time we were actually out together was at the Angel’s Envy event at the Red Owl in the Hotel Monaco.

I sit at the end of the bar and chat with her and the other bartender, Lizzie. I order a glass of chardonnay with a side of ice. I ask them if I can run over to Dunkin’ Donuts and get them coffee and donuts. They leap at that opportunity and I tell them I’m going out for a smoke and then I’ll go to the store.

Later I come back with exactly what they wanted. Two medium coffees, cream and sugar. A blueberry and a chocolate frosted for Prova, and a frosted for Lizzie.

The girls are happy and Lizzie even high fives me to give thanks to the bounty I have provided.

I’m there for a couple of hours and in that time I’m talking to Prova. She tells me she’s leaving her other job at the rooftop lounge. She hasn’t told them she’s leaving yet but she’s looking. I remember I was there the week before and she had mentioned that. With the success I’ve had getting her this job, and the other one down at the beer garden two years ago, I put the word out.

I even asked my buddy Zack over at City Tap House if they needed bartenders. He said he’d let me know by the end of the week.

Prova tells me she has more days off than ever this upcoming week. I ask her if she’d like to meet me at Square 1682 on Monday for Happy Hour. She smiles and thinks that would be a wonderful idea. I’m looking forward to seeing her outside of this bar again and having a few drinks and chatting uninterrupted for a bit.

I make a mental note but also put it in the calendar. I won’t forget because Prova is my friend, but I do it anyway. I put everything in my calendar. I’m from the business world. (and so is she before she decided to bail on her finance job and work as a bartender in the service industry) You’ve got to stay organized. That way once it’s in there and I can think about other things.

I get my bill and I’m a little perplexed. It’s $27 for 3 glasses of wine. Hmm…

I pay it, and tip accordingly and leave.

“See you Monday, Prova!”

That Monday I’m at Cavanaugh’s doing my thing. You know my thing right? I go there every Monday. I get treated like royalty by Karina. A girl I barely know. My cheese steak that I don’t even have to order, because Karina knows exactly how I want it, and makes that happen. And how I want my soft drink to come out with the food, not before. It’s half off on Mondays, so a cheese steak, fries and endless cokes is $5. Then at 3pm she brings me a Bulliet Manhattan and another one around 4pm. My entire bill is $15.  I go large on her tip because of how well I’m treated. I pay cash because cash is king. THAT’S Hospitality. I can drink at home.

I come out to be served, and served I am at Cavanaugh’s Rittenhouse.

Around 12:30pm I text Prova to confirm a time for tonight.

“What time do you want to meet at Square 1682?”

“Hey sorry totally forgot about today. Can’t meet. Taking care of some work related stuff. can we meet tomorrow?”

“Nope. I’ll be working.”

“Oh, ok I’m sorry. (sad-faced emoji)”

“It’s okay Prova.”

 

But it’s not okay, dear readers.

First of all, I got her that job at that bar. Sure, I know, anybody can get you a job but you’re the one who has to keep it. I get that. But I hooked that shit up for her. I’m a regular there. I know the owner. He’s the Uncle of my partner at the salon, for goodness sakes.

I bring you coffee and donuts because I care about you and like making you happy. You in turn charge me $9 for every glass of wine I had that day. Are you that desperate for tips, Prova? No industry discount, not a “This one’s on us.”

Nothing.

I know every bartender in the city has a certain number of drinks they can give away for free.

But you know what the worst part of this story is?

I made a plan with Prova to meet up and have some social time with her. I value her and my time. I only surround myself with good people now. It’s been a great relief to cut all of the detritus from my life. I care about Prova and like her very much.

She didn’t even have the decency to cancel with me on Monday. She could have even lied if she just didn’t feel like going out that night. I wouldn’t have cared. If I hadn’t reached out she would have just went on with whatever the fuck she did that day and never given me a thought.

But the fact that she ‘totally forgot’ about our meeting hurt my feelings. I remembered I was meeting with her that night. I didn’t have to put it in my calendar, but I did because she’s important to me. I really care about her and our friendship. I remember what kind of coffee she likes and the exact kind of donuts she likes. I remember all of that. I remembered to give her a free tanning session last year. I remembered that she needed to find a job and I found her not one, but two jobs in the same week.

But less than 48 hours after making a plan with me. Charles. You simply forgot. Work related stuff? What the fuck does that even mean?

You can tell I’m angry, disappointed, and most of all hurt. Prova, you simply forgot about me. I don’t mean shit to you. I don’t like the way that makes me feel when you smite me.

It’s rude and I won’t tolerate it. So, I’m going to stop going to the bar where you work. I’m also not going to recommend the place to anyone. I’m not going to text you or make any effort to contact you in any way.

I’m also putting a curse on you.

The curse is that when you reach the age of 35, you’re working behind the bar of some tavern. You have no man in your life who loves you or is courting you for marriage. And you still have to live with a roommate to make ends meet.

Oh wait… That one’s already been taken.

The only way to break the curse is to realize I am no longer in your life before this post publishes. You’ll reach out to me and apologize to me for your infraction. I, of course will forgive you because I truly care for you and always forgive. Everything will go back to exactly how it was before you fucked it up by carelessly discarding a valuable person in your life.

I wonder if you’ll ever wake up and realize that you can’t do that to people who care about you. I’m a person. With a heart. You hurt me Prova. I’m sad. Fix it before this comes out and we’re good. If not?

We’re already done.

I conveyed this story to my buddy Jake and he said to simply let go of the infraction.

 

So I decided to take the high road and let it go. Why should  idrink the poison hoping someone else dies? It’s a waste of valuable energy.

 

UPDATE: I went into the bar she works in bearing coffee and donuts. She was very grateful and said it was just what she needed. I forgive her, but realize we really have nothing in common now that she’s fallen into the black hole of bar hospitality and nightlife at 35 years old.

 

UPDATE: 6/18/18 I set up a lunch with Prova and she was 30 minutes late. I held a special table at one of my favorite lunch spots. When she arrived, she ignored my reservation, and wanted to sit at the bar so she could she could see her friend, the bartender who she knew. This was a recently fired employee from a place where Provo currently works. The friend jokes how Prova puked on her carpet. Nice job. I’m sure your family is so proud of their daughter who is now working in a tap room and pushing 40.

 

Let me describe the scene. I’m waiting at my reserved table for Prova. She’s 30 minutes late. The music at Misconduct is too loud for the lunch crowd but the staff is too dumb to realize that. Prova rolls in and makes a bee line for the bar to see her friend.

She forces me to relinquish my reserved table and sit with her at the bar, because it is no longer about our meeting, but her hanging with her bartender friend.

We eat, and Prova plows wine and shots before her shift at Bar 1518 and I realize that someone I liked has fallen into the black hole.

I have no use for Prova anymore.

I watch as she and her bartender friend do shots in the middle of the day and realize I have no more use for Prova.

She’s a lost soul. and everything I’ve documented in this post stands true.

Good luck, Prova.

You called me for help. I helped you. I liked you. You squandered our friendship.

You’re a morally bankrupt person.

Here’s your theme.

 

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1967 Pontiac GTO – Today

“Paint job’s ok, but there’s rust, and the chrome is nowhere near what it once was. No way. Pieces fall away every year, now more than ever. But the car still runs, and when I drop the clutch and go, the car sings a symphony better than any new hybrid I’ve ever met in the last 10 years.”

“Write drunk and edit sober.”Ernest Hemingway

I feel like I’m midnight blue ’67 Pontiac GTO All original parts, some missing.

The car looks decent despite it’s age.

The engine and spirit of the car are great and it can still get up and roar against any new car off the lot, but its an old machine.

It’s falling apart but “the Goat” is still very valuable and has a lot of great history and memories in it. The upholstery is fraying. There’s a bit of rust. The struts are going’ the transmissions fucked.

The oil sometimes leaks.

The car is old.

The car is slowly falling apart.

I feel it.

But as a machine it’s still a badass ’67 GTO.

People love it. Girls love it, but if they looked under the hood they’d see that the beast is starting to fail.

It looks like a worn car form 40 years ago but it still runs great on the track based on its current performance, but inside it’s going.

It’s just time and gravity.

The power plant can somehow burn it up like when it was born but in the day-to-day, if you spend any time with the car you’ll learn that it’s seen a lot of miles and is now missing some parts. There has been no restoration. It still runs but with fewer parts than when it arrived off the assembly line.

The car was driven hard and saw some glory days and won a lot of races, but it lost a lot too, and suffers the scars of going through the guard rail and flipping over.

There’s been a little restoration on the mind of the car and that’s what held it together all these years but its had some really shitty owners and drivers that took this lovely car and ran it into the ground.

But it still runs.

The engine still has a lot of get up and go because that’s what it was built for. But it will probably get harder (or softer) every year because the car isn’t getting any younger.

Paint job’s ok, but there’s rust, and the chrome is nowhere near what it once was. No way. Pieces fall away every year, now more than ever. But the car still runs, and when I drop the clutch and go, the car sings a symphony better than any new hybrid I’ve ever met in the last 10 years.

So the old horse still has it. Because that was a well-built car in the 60’s, by people who knew how to make a good product, not by their design, just the vehicle that came through them from their ancestors. I like them better. The assembly line technicians that raised me sort of hated working with each other but they put out some good cars. I have three sisters to prove it. We have a solid line.

But this old classic is losing some of its shine, and I can fix that, if I can just get the things going now that I want to now. If new business takes off, the GTO will sing like it did in the sixties, but in today’s world. Better than ever. An old muscle car that can outrun the fastest production car you have coming off the line straight out of college.

Maybe like every guy my age I’m clinging to my youth, but I know I’m not. I like being the age I am. I don’t want to be the fool I once was. There is a whole world ahead of me and for us all, gentlemen. It doesn’t have to be us drowning in our past and drinking the poison hoping all of the people who broke our hearts die. That’s bullshit. you can’t evolve through that. You have to forgive and evolve beyond that. My father once said, “every man dies, not every man lives.” I live by that shit, man.

Forgive everyone. Don’t drink the poison, let go of the bars of your prison and walk the fuck out, gentleman. Doesn’t matter what direction… just take a step.

We’re a bunch of old cars trying to navigate the traffic of today’s world and love again. There are a lot of crazy old cars out there and even more wacky new models, but I believe there are some classics out there still on the road, that would love to pull up along side you and maybe meet up at the drive through for a movie and a milkshake.

Keep driving. She’s out there looking for your too.

 

 

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Annabelle – Chapter 14 – I Can’t Quit You Baby

Adults speak to one another and close the relationship. It’s wrong to put a person on a shelf like they are some sort of toy, and then think you can take them down and play with them whenever you’re confused or lonely. It’s just shitty behavior. The person you’re doing that to is a human being with feelings. You’re a rotten person if you think that sort of behavior is okay.

This is the most painful chapter I have ever written on phicklphilly. The pain and sadness Annabelle has caused me is immeasurable. But the saddest thing is she doesn’t even know it because she is so lost as a person. Just a fool running errands for others that are making fools art.

Annabelle had officially dumped me on Thursday, April 17th, 2014. She texted me a day after that, and we made arrangements for me to get what little stuff I had at her apartment. She was nice enough to tell me that she’d bring it down to me. It was just shirts and stuff so I was fine with it. I was happy I didn’t have to drag myself out to Northern Liberties to go get my shit because I hated going out there.

It was a sunny Saturday morning when she showed up and handed me a bag.  I thanked her and asked her how she was doing. She said a little sad and depressed. I told her I was too. (A bold-faced lie)

She asked me if I was hungry. I told her I was. She asked if I wanted to get something to eat. I told her I did.

It was an odd moment. She had broken up with me a few days ago and now here she was wanting to hang out with me. I didn’t mind. I eventually had a friendship with my ex before her and remain friends to this day. (See: Michelle – 2007 – Present – A Brand New Day)

It was a nice day in Spring so we walked up to DiBruno Brothers on 18th and Chestnut Streets. It’s a really nice food market and eatery. We both got some sort of salads and went upstairs to the dining room. There weren’t many people up there. Maybe just two other couples. I don’t remember what we talked about, but it was probably whatever shoot she was going on or what play she was working on.

When we were finished eating, she moved to the chair closest to me at the table. She started to kiss up on me. It was really nice. Normally we never did public displays of affection. But it was sexy and hot. It’s weird. Something’s not right about that.

But it felt good, and a day later we were eating at an Indian restaurant near my hospital and then went back to my apartment and made love. The sex was good like always and I actually said to her: “If this is what you breaking up with me feels like, you should break up with me every week!”

Be careful what you wish for. We’ve all heard that old adage. But I liked the new Annabelle. It was all the stuff I liked about her. Food, sex and spending a little time with a pretty young woman. But at that time back in the Spring of 2014, I didn’t know that I didn’t love Annabelle. I didn’t even like her. I just was in love with the idea of being in love with her. I had no idea what was happening to me at the time. Now I had the drug almost on my terms. I wouldn’t have to “put my time in at her shitty apartment”, or put up with the grinding frustration and disappointment of being in a relationship with her. All the responsibility was gone.

But if you go into a new love, (It had been 2 years since Michelle) you must go into that new relationship for the right reason. That’s why I always warn people not to “have sex on the 3rd date” and ask themselves, do they really have much in common with their partner. Like the same things, activities, shared some of the same friends, work and religious values can also come into play.

But your old pal Phicklephilly, plowed right into this relationship with this woman  25 years his junior, not thinking any of this through. All I wanted was to be romantic with a young woman and feel the rush of new love. I didn’t realize it but I had gotten hooked on a drug I had nothing in common with. The only thing Annabelle and I had was a common attraction to each other. She’d never been in love before and didn’t know how to love or what to do with her feelings. Me, I meet a friendly, tall, young blond bartender and I’m ready to go head over heels.

What a fool I was.

A week or so later, I met her at a bus station near 30th Street just to give her moral support for trip to New York to buy some lenses for camera she owned. I just wanted to make her feel calm before her trip, and it worked. You might think why wouldn’t you go with her, and spend the day?

Here’s the thing, if we could have just hooked up sexually and I didn’t have to do any grinding boring stuff I had zero interest in, the relationship could have worked. So there’s no way I wanted to go anywhere with her.

On another occasion, I met her at 30th Street Station for a quick-lunch, and I put her on a train to somewhere for a shoot. I remember her saying, “Let’s have sex tonight!”

I was fine with that at the time. We had dinner that night. It was like being back at the beginning when things were good. Then back to my apartment for passionate fun.

Here’s the problem with that. I was getting exactly what I wanted from her. I was getting the thing I liked about our relationship so for me it was perfect. I didn’t have to see her all the time and I was still being delivered the euphoric dopamine that I so craved. I had no idea how damaging this is to one’s psyche.

Then it started to become less and less. That’s when the withdrawal kicks in. I went from someone who was relieved when she ended it, and now I was really missing her. I was losing her for real now. But it wasn’t her I was losing, I just wasn’t getting my “fix” anymore. Normally I’m not like that, and I vow to never let that happen again. But I never realized the relationship was sick from the start and doomed from day one.

A month went by, and I was on that tour boat on the Delaware river with my colleague when she texted me that she wanted to meet up for dinner. I really wanted to see her, but had to do that, “don’t get right back to her” move. But when I did she got right back to me and we set it up. She wanted to go to dinner and then stop and Chris’ Jazz club after. I was down for that. Of course I wanted to see her.

We planned to meet over at Pennsylvania 6, which was a French and Southern fusion type place. I knew she’d like it.

I was actually sipping a Ketel One vodka martini straight up with a twist as I waited for her at the bar. My hands were shaking I was so nervous. Yes, this was happening to the experienced old lion. She came in and noticed it. I don’t know what I said to cover.

We had a lovely dinner and were very sweet to one another. When the meal was over, I asked her if she was still down for Chris’ Jazz. She stated that she was tired from the wine and could we just go back to my place and relax on the couch and chill in the AC. I was fine with that because I didn’t feel like hanging out at the Chris’ Jazz anyway.

We went straight to my bedroom and had sex, and she spent the night.

The dopamine drops again. We took a selfie in bed together the next morning. We went to breakfast and then I put her in a cab and off she went. She asked that I send her the selfies from earlier and I did. (It was just our two faces on the pillow. Nothing racy)

A few weeks went by.

Her Uncle came to visit one week and they were at Chris’ Jazz and I was at some food and booze festival half in the bag and she texted that she was missing me. I jumped in an UBER and hung out with them for a bit, then he left and I went back to her place. The usual acts ensued. I was so drunk that night, if she had asked me to come rob a bank with her I would have gone.

This sort of nonsense went on through the summer. But the in between times were the worst. Because she stopped planning things with me that led to sex, it was just random, drunken hook ups. The relationship was slowly being picked apart. It was like I’d get a little better hang with another chick, and then Annabelle could just swoop in whenever the mood struck her and she’d rip open the sutures of my healing love junkie heart.

All of my friends were telling me it was wrong and that I should cut her off. But I just couldn’t get off the smack.

One time I ended up drunk with her in Northern Liberties and we ended up taking a selfie of just our shadows on the ground. Ironic now how that was really all that was left of us. We both just fell into her bed and went to sleep.

The next morning I wanted to get frisky with her and when I tried to she said, “I can’t. I’ve been with someone, and I found out they were having sex with someone else. So if I have something I don’t want to give it to you.”

Well that was nice of her, but I still wish I could have had sex with her that morning as hungover as I was. I love morning sex. It just makes the rest of your day better. But you can see how reckless her life decisions are.

So I was a safe rebound after whoever she had been seeing cheated on her. I left and did the long walk of shame back to Rittenhouse.

We did meet for a really nice seafood dinner out at Doc MacGrogan’s in University City that September. I took a bus down to Old City, and then called an UBER and went to her apartment in Northern Libs. Picked her up and then had the UBER take us to the restaurant. She was once again exposed to what it’s like to be treated like a lady by a gentleman.

The dinner was nice and they were my client at the time, so I got the hookup. During dinner we talked about us. She said she missed me. I asked her if she wanted to try again. She said that she did but wanted to go slowly. I would have been okay with that with how turned around in my head I was at the time. But after I wrote it all down in these 15 chapters did I realize how wrong all of this behavior was. Adults don’t do that to each other.

I thought after dinner it would be back to the batcave for some frolicking and frivolity. I didn’t even get to ask if she wanted to come over. She feigned a headache and I got dropped off at my apartment and she went on home. She always pulled the “fake headache” move whenever she decided she didn’t want to do something. Lame, juvenile behavior.

After that she simply “ghosted” me. For those of you reading this that don’t know what that means, it’s when someone in your life simply vanishes. They don’t call or text. It all suddenly stops. Nothing. Just gone. This went on for months. I wasn’t going to contact her. She did this. I needed to heal. Adults speak to one another and close the relationship. It’s wrong to put a person on a shelf like they are just some sort of toy, and then think you can take them down and play with them whenever you’re confused or lonely. It’s just shitty behavior. The person you’re doing that to is a human being with feelings.  You’re a rotten person if you think that sort of behavior is okay.

It was a lonely, vacuous, depressing time for me, heading into winter. The darkness of depression closed around me like a black cloak.

Months passed, and I was at a toy drive to help kids in the hospital during the holidays. Me and my buddy Church do it every year for Children’s Hospital.

I get a text from Annabelle out of the blue. It sent a shock wave of anxiety searing throughout my mind and body.

After months of silence, I get this text:

“Hey! I’m in New Orleans and I’ve been thinking about you everyday. I even had a dream about you!”

Searing pain and fear. I’m trying to move on with my life.

“I’m working a Toy Drive for the holidays. Can I call you when I get home?”

“Sure!”

I proceeded to try to numb the pain of this reopening of the wound by plowing Cutty Sark Prohibition based cocktails down my gullet. Church calls it “The Babymaker” because it’s 100 proof and makes you do crazy shit.

Maybe it was just the fuel I needed that cold winter’s eve.

Later when I got home, I called her I chatted as nicely as I could and then told her that I couldn’t keep doing this. I couldn’t live like this.

“So we’re not dating anymore?”

“No, Annabelle. We’re done. We’re done. I can’t keep talking about this. It’s all too painful to go on.”

I wrapped up the conversation quietly, and hung up. Then I proceeded to unfriend and block her on my Facebook, Instagram and finally block this selfish person in my phone.

That was the end of it.

 

You too, Michelle….

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish Monday through Friday at 8am EST.

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Tales of Rock: Chris Cornell, Soundgarden and Audioslave Frontman, Dies at 52

So sad…

I was going to publish a piece today about Sly Stone ending up living in a van.

But not now.

Wednesday I was home, writing the epilogue of another lost girlfriend, and listening to Soundgarden and the solo work of Chris Cornell. I never do that. I was actually listening to Badmotorfinger, the full album on You Tube, while I wrote my blog. The irony has struck me hard, and I am still trying to understand what is happening. I love the song “You Know My Name” from the James Bond film, Casino Royale. I always think of it as my theme song.

I woke up Thursday to a text from my buddy, Church that Chris had passed. I was shocked and saddened. It comes with a heavy heart that I publish today’s blog.

Chris Cornell, the powerful, dynamic singer whose band Soundgarden was one of the architects of grunge music, has died at 52.

The death of Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell has been ruled a suicide by the Wayne County Medical Examiner’s Office.

“The Medical Examiner has completed the autopsy on 52-year-old Chris Cornell, the Soundgarden musician who died last night in Detroit. The cause of death has been determined as hanging by suicide. A full autopsy report has not yet been completed. There is no additional information at this time.”

Spokesman Brian Bumbery told the Associated Press that Cornell was found in his hotel room at the MGM Grand Detroit following a tour date at Detroit’s Fox Theatre with the reunited Soundgarden, the band he’d fronted for over 30 years

Dontae Freeman, media relations manager for the Detroit Police Department, later told the newspaper, “He was found in his room with a band around his neck, but (the report) doesn’t say if it was attempted suicide or not.”

Cornell had appeared to be in good spirits Wednesday when he tweeted, “Finally back to Rock City” before the show. However, Freeman noted that the singer’s wife, Vicky Karayiannis, asked a family friend and asked him to check on Cornell after the show later that evening. The friend forced open his hotel room door and found Cornell unresponsive on the bathroom floor.

Bumbery called Cornell’s death “sudden and unexpected” and said his wife and family are in shock. The statement said the family would be working closely with the Wayne County medical examiner to determine the cause and have asked for privacy.

Chris was born in 1964 in Seattle and helped form Soundgarden 20 years later. Sub Pop, then a fledgling record label, released the group’s first single, “Hunted Down,” in 1987, as well as two subsequent EPs. The group’s debut album, “Ultramega OK,” came a year later.

“Badmotorfinger,” released in 1991, benefited from the swell of attention that was beginning to surround the Seattle scene, where Soundgarden, along with Nirvana and Pearl Jam, were playing a high-octane, high-angst brand of rock ’n’ roll. Soundgarden’s musical journeys tended toward the knotty and dark, plunging into off-kilter meters and punctuated by Mr. Cornell’s voice, which could quickly shift from a soulful howl to a gritty growl.

Three of Soundgarden’s studio albums have been certified platinum, including “Superunknown,” from 1994, which featured “Black Hole Sun,” “Fell on Black Days,” “Spoonman” and “My Wave.”

The group — which includes the guitarist Kim Thayil, the bassist Ben Shepherd and the drummer Matt Cameron — disbanded in 1997, but it reunited in 2010 and performed regularly since then. In a review of a 2011 concert at the Prudential Center in Newark, The New York Times chief pop critic Jon Pareles called Soundgarden “one reunited band that can pick up right where it left off.” In 2012, it released “King Animal,” its first album in 16 years, which Mr. Pareles said “sounds like four musicians live in a room, making music that clenches and unclenches like a fist.”

The group played at the Fox Theater in Detroit on Wednesday night, and it had been scheduled to perform in Columbus, Ohio, on Friday at the Rock on the Range festival.

Chris appeared to be active on social media in the hours before his death. A post on his Twitter account on Wednesday announced that the group had arrived in Detroit, and a clip of the group’s 2012 release “By Crooked Steps” was posted to his official Facebook page hours before his death.

Chris had admitted in interviews to struggling with drug use throughout his life. In a 1994 Rolling Stone article, he described himself as a “daily drug user at 13,” who had quit by the time he turned 14.

After Soundgarden disbanded in 1997, Mr. Cornell returned to heavy drug use, he told The Guardian in a 2009 interview, describing himself as a “pioneer” in the abuse of the opiate OxyContin, and saying that he had gone to rehab.

Chris released five solo albums during and after his time with Soundgarden, starting with the 1999 LP “Euphoria Morning.” His 2007 album “Carry On” featured an acoustic cover of Michael Jackson’s “Billie Jean” that served as the inspiration for a well-received version of the song on “American Idol.” He contributed the song “Seasons” to the soundtrack of “Singles,” Cameron Crowe’s love letter to the Seattle music scene, and performed alongside other members of Soundgarden in the film.

In 2001, after Rage Against the Machine’s lead singer, Zack de la Rocha, left the group, Mr. Cornell and members of the band formed Audioslave. The group released three albums before announcing its split in 2007.

In November 2016, Chris hit the road for the first time with another supergroup of sorts, Temple of the Dog, which features a blend of members of Soundgarden and Pearl Jam. The group was formed a quarter-century ago as a tribute to Andrew Wood, the lead singer of the Seattle bands Malfunkshun and Mother Love Bone, who died in March 1990 of a heroin overdose.

Speaking to The New York Times, Chris said the group had decided to finally bring its songs to life to honor Mr. Wood. “I thought, well, this is one thing that I can do to remind myself and maybe other people of who this guy is and was and keep his story and in a way his life with us,” he said.

Incidentally, in a final footnote, I just learned that Chris was taking Antivan for depression. Two of the side effects of that drug can be “More Depression” and “Suicidal Thoughts.”

And in a final grim note, the final song of the show he played in Detroit that night. The final song Chris would ever play, was Led Zeppelin’s “In My Time of Dying.”

Thanks to everyone for following phicklephilly right up to my 100th blog post. It just sucks that it had to be about this. The Cornell family are in our thoughts and prayers.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday at 9am EST.