Ghosts are not the only things that can haunt a person. There are many things that can leave a mark lingering on someone for years. This is a dark tell-all tale of a woman. It is about an unfortunate love lost, but the journey through it, that led to her most powerful discovery.
I can’t believe I am writing this. Three years later. Where so long ago in a faraway place I left the swirling galaxy of Ryan and I behind.
It is with a hope of healing that I tell this tale. A journey over rough waters, that crashed with a devastating force onto the new world I am in today. I have wandered aimlessly through my new world, growing with every step of exploration I take.
It was tucked back into a place in my heart that, for the past couple years has remained a ghost town. A grey image of a time and place that once was, but no longer a part of this physical realm. I don't know what it is about right now in my life, but I can feel faint movements of a ghost in that image. A brief moment of haunting, that is only increasing in its reaches as I draw my breaths to drink it in. And so, I feel as though I must tell our story.
"Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
Sir," said I, "or Madam, truly your forgiveness I implore;
But the fact is I was napping, and so gently you came rapping,
And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door,
That I scarce was sure I heard you"— here I opened wide the door; —
Darkness there, and nothing more."
At this time 3 years ago I was living with my boyfriend Ryan. Someone I was deeply in love with. The first time I ever knew what love could feel like. We were starting our summer out in a sunny small mountain town on the front range of Colorado called Golden.
We were college-sweethearts. The house was a 1 story red brick home, shaded by giant hovering oak trees. It was quiet, and peaceful. Ryan was idealistic with fantasies of the world moving softly behind his blue eyes. He had the most blue eyes I had ever seen, almost surreal.
He was a tall young man towering a little over 6 feet. He had dark brown hair that swept across his forehead, only emphasizing his bright blue eyes. He was very handsome, the type that always had girls taking a second look when he walked by. He was very confident. He would walk into a room like he was walking down a red carpet for his own movie premier, charming everyone in his way.
I moved into his house a month earlier, something we had decided we wanted over Valentine’s Day weekend. We took a trip to the mountains for the weekend. I didn't know it, but Ryan had arranged ahead of time to have our room covered in rose petals. A little corny, you are thinking? Not to people who are stupid in love with each other, for some reason you just can’t help but to view the corny as momentous.
When we checked in downstairs, the front desk clerk gave me a funny smile after I gave him our reservation name. I looked up at Ryan with a concerned look, to see if he noticed it. At the moment I figured the clerk was being rude and found me amusing in some way. Ryan gave me a sly smile, pulled me into his side, and kissed my head. As a silent protest to tell me it was all in my imagination.
He had a way of doing that, making me feel like I was slightly crazy when he didn't see the importance in something. I was surprised he did not say "Yes, Dear" as he kissed my head. That was his favorite way of humorously letting me know I was being dramatic and dismissing the subject at hand. He knew I hated when he did that, but also loved it at the same time.
"Your room is ready, 310 here are your keys you can take the elevator to the third floor" The clerk gestured with his hands over to the elevator doors.
"Great, thanks" Ryan said to the clerk as they gave each other a secret smile while he reached for the key cards.
What the hell was that, did they know something I didn’t? I glanced back and forth between the two of them. Was there something on my face? Do I have a wedgie or is my bra showing or something? Trying to be subtle, I started checking my appearance to make sure nothing was off as we took the elevator and walked to our room.
"Are you ready?" Ryan asked as he sat our bags down outside the door and held up the room key.
"Uhhh, yeah" I laughed. A little confused as to why he was acting kind of odd.
He swung the door open, and I saw a gorgeous hotel room filled with roses in vases and petals all over. It covered everything I could see in the room.
I held my hand up to my mouth, astounded at the site. Entering slowly into the room, I looked around at the crimson of roses creating a notable contrast to the white snow falling behind it through a giant window. I picked a handful of the soft red petals off the bed and smiled as I released them one by one back onto the comforter.
Ryan walked behind me and rested his chin on the top of my head while placing his hands gently over my shoulders. "What do you think?" He quietly asked me.
I had no words that could narrate what I felt in that moment. We didn't have a lot of money, and all these roses must have cost a fortune. It was clearly important to Ryan to make this weekend special for me. The gratitude I felt for him considering my happiness at the occasion was, indescribable.
I turned around and faced him. "You are amazing" was all I could manage to get out. He smiled and gave me a kiss. A gentle, loving one. With his lips placed sweetly on top of mine, he moved his hand slowly down my back and with an appreciative movement pulled me closer to him.
I unlocked our lips and pushed him back a little, "Wait, is that why the guy at the front desk was acting weird with you?"
"Yes, he knew what was up here I am sure, I called earlier this week to arrange it, and made sure this morning before we left that everything was done" He replied in a brash fashion. Very proud of himself.
"You are so sneaky, but I love you" I smiled.
"I love you too" he smiled back before giving me another kiss.
It took us a long time to leave the room after that. We left when we finally decided we needed sustenance. I buttoned up my beige peacoat and placed my navy blue beanie on my head pulling my long hair around to one side. Ryan held his hand out to me. I laced mine into his and we headed out to brave the cold winter night.
We warmed up by a fireplace in a local pub we came across. I looked down at our matching amber ales as they illuminated fiercely by the fire on the table in front of us. I was so fulfilled in that moment. My soul was quite literally warm between Ryan snuggled next to me on the left, and the fire raving on the right.
He was my best friend, the one person who saw me better than anyone. We were kindred spirits at that time in our life. Just two kids trying to figure out our next move. As I absorbed that moment with full sanctity, Ryan placed his hand on mine and started lightly tracing the shadows of my palms.
"So, I’ve been thinking" He stated.
"Have you now? Must be a good change of pace for your brain" I teased him.
"Yes Dear" He said as he rolled his eyes at me. We both laughed a little. "Seriously though"
"OK, what have you been thinking about?" I asked.
"All my room mates are moving out after graduation, and I will have that big house all to myself. I know you aren't completely amused living with your mom, and I was wondering..." he paused "well I was wondering if maybe you would want to move in with me"
"Wow, really, that would honestly be OK with you?" I asked him kind of shocked. I didn't think he would be ready to take the next step with us for a while.
"I am OK with it" he gave me a huge smile and squeezed my hand "I think it would be a really good idea"
I reached down and took a sip of my beer to think for a second. He watched my every movement right down to the breath exhaling from my chest. He would do that sometimes. Become completely immersed with his gaze on me. Whenever he did that I could feel my heart race like it does when you have to get up to make a speech. I sat my drink down, and bit my lip a little. I smiled as I replied "OK I'm in, let’s try it out."
"OK!" He said excitedly, and reached in to kiss me. "I think this is going to be really good"
He continued to have a giddy smile on his face and I watched his eyes trace over the fire and get lost in thought. "What are you thinking about?" I asked with curiosity.
"I was just thinking about what it’s going to be like living with you, it gives me butterflies"
Ryan may have been a cocky college guy to his friends, but with me he was a pile of mush. He never felt afraid to just truly tell me how he felt, even if it came out really lovey-dovey. He was always saying things like that to me.
I bet you're wondering how a scene like that could end up so desolate. This isn't your typical breakup story. I will tell you all the ugly truths that led to the implosion. It is a quantum system of events, one not being able to exist without the other.
Ryan loved me, I knew that, but it was difficult for him to get to a place where he admitted it. Before we became a couple, we were friends. He swore to me and anyone else that wanted to listen that he would never have a girlfriend in college. He claimed it was a "fool’s errand". He was calloused with his treatment of women. I watched him charm them and throw them aside when he was done.
I didn't know it then but Ryan's ambition towards being casual with women stemmed from his Father's influence. The first time I ever had dinner with his parents, his father bragged to the whole table that he had slept with over 100 women in college. All the while with his beautiful loving wife sitting right beside him.
Ryan was his only son, and the first born of his two sisters. I think it meant a lot to Ryan Senior to have his son follow in his disgusting footsteps. So, he built Ryan up every chance he could. And although he liked me, he was disappointed in Ryan for the loving relationship we had.
How messed up is that?
Although idealistic, Ryan was a complicated person with many years of puzzling influence from his Father. He tried very hard to not be his father, yet he loved and admired him at the same time. He sympathized with his mother for his fathers unfaithful treatment of her. And for Ryan, it was an on-going crusade of defining his independence.
It would be capricious for me to say that our horrid breakup was only caused by Ryan's contentions. I have my own dark issues that I will tell you about. Ryan and I just came together at a time in our life where we were the most abstracted versions of ourselves. Before the year that we decided to move in together we had spent the previous summer apart.
This was because of me. I broke up with him as a way to push him aside to avoid my own demise. I was constantly trying to push him away because I was terrified of the deep love for him that had taken over my life.
When I came to college, I was like a typical bird flying free on my own. I could do whatever I wanted and I did not have the stability of my family anymore. So like most 20-somethings, I learned a lot more of who I was.
First you need to know that I have a passive way of dealing with circumstances.
I imagine my soul as an ocean. Vast and deep, and every part affected by the circulating seasons. I have certain areas in my soul that I hold memories and build from new ones. Down in the lowest depth, live my most painful memories. It is very dark, nearly black, with silence so deafening. It remained still for many years until I fell in love with Ryan.
Without stability, and the catalyst of alcohol all around me, cognizance from that dark valley started to come alive and bubble towards my surface.
I am going to cut the metaphors and just tell you what happened. When I was 13 years old I snuck out one night with my friends, and went to a house with a bunch of older guys to a party. My friends were more hardcore than me. None of them were virgins, and they not only drank but did some drugs with these older guys too. I never wanted to do drugs and I was not about to lose my virginity. Especially not to these older guys that made me very nervous at the time.
Side note: these guys were 18-20 and were perfectly aware that we were all in middle school. Fucked up isn't it?
So were at this party and having somewhat of a good time. I started to feel very drunk. I only had one drink so I assumed that the guy who had made it for me had made it extremely strong. He came over to me and while commenting that I looked a little drunk asked if I wanted to go to Taco Bell and make a food run for everyone, insisting that food would be good for me. He did not want to go get food. What I am going to tell you now is the last of what I can remember of the time I lost my virginity. Being 29 now I dont think there was atypical "roofy" in my drink but something very debilitating.
The edges my vision became fuzzy and the world started tilting as we walked to his car. The night became a nauseating ugly black with just a couple specks of streetlights. I felt sick to my stomach, I thought I might literally get sick. I tripped a little and he forcibly picked me up and pushed me onward.
We reached his car and I rested my back against it while he did something in the backseat. I wanted to run but my feet just wouldn't move. Nothing would move. My limbs were so heavy they felt almost numb. My brain was frantically screaming to get them moving but nothing would happen. I was terrified and my heart was racing. I was not sure what was going on but I knew it wasn't good. I opened my mouth to scream but there wasn't enough air in my lungs for anything but faint breaths to come out. In a complete void of desperation, a tear ran down my cheek and I distinctively remember tasting a salty tear drop on my lips.
I remember the first part after he shoved me in the backseat. I had faint breaths of the word no, but he kept telling me it was going to be ok. I looked up to the moonroof at the stars that I could barely notice. I felt pain, physical pain on my front of my shoulders, and my legs. I wasnt sure why I was feeling that pain. I cried silent tears with no breaths behind them. And then I passed out, into a blank cold sleep.
I woke up a little while later, dawn was just barely peaking over the horizon. My pants and shoes were on the floor next to me and no one was around. I noticed I was in a park close to my house. I took a deep breath, while still feeling very deranged, I gathered my clothes, got out of the car and headed home.
I snuck upstairs to the bathroom of our large suburban home and I climbed into the shower with all my clothes on. I ran the hot water and sat there staring down at my shoes, as the warm water drenched my body. I looked down at my hands and formed a lose grip. Until I heard my mom knock on the door and tell me I was going to be late to school.
Fuck. There was no way I could go to school like this. So I got out of the shower, dropped my clothes and wrapped a towel around my body. There were finger print bruises on my upper thigh near my pelvis that were a faint purple. There were some on my collar bone that were even darker. I stared at myself in the mirror and thought, dear god I look shit.
Staring at my broken reflection, I remembered what must have happened. In that moment I felt my stomach drop and my heart split through my chest. I wished so badly that I could die. Please lord let me die before I leave this bathroom. I cried quietly to myself which took all the energy I had left in me. Deep desperation filled up every part of my body, all my nerves, everything. I felt it all over. How... and why..... why. It was supposed to be special, and just like that in a wreck of my being my virginity was gone, never to be reclaimed, completely lost.
I sucked up my tears, put on sweats and a hoody. I headed downstairs to where my mom was making breakfast and told her I was very ill and did not think I could make it to school. She took one look at my face and didnt doubt for a second that I was.
Luckily it was a Friday, so I spent the next 3 days pretending to be sick and sleeping in bed, I didnt even want to watch TV. I sat staring at the window, my mind was so numb. I stared until my eyes were tired enough to fall asleep over and over again.
After that weekend, I never spoke to those friends. I put that memory into the dark depths of my soul and did not think of it again until I was in my 20's.
They say that alcohol lowers your inhibitions. That it takes away any walls you have hiding your secrets. Secrets. They come spilling out. The way you feel about something, or what you know comes out. Just like the transparent liquid vodka being poured so delicately yet rapidly through a speed pour.
My secret was dark, and I was extremely embarrassed. Who could ever love someone so torn, so unfortunately physically torn. I fought so hard for those years to keep that secret to myself. Every time it felt like it was coming up, I would wash it down with more alcohol and retreat to my room alone. When I was alone, I started cutting my arms until I could not feel the pain inside anymore and was so exhausted I would just pass out. I would wake the next morning, throw on a long sleeve shirt, and head to class like nothing was going on. I would smile, laugh, and goof off with my friends like every other person in our school.
Ryan, you came into my life, when that was happening.
So what did I did do? Oh lets see... I was a young 20' something millennial in a college overruled by a male population. I lashed the fuck out. I lashed out on you every time I had enough liquid courage. I lashed out on my friends. I lashed out on my family. You saw so much, so many times you stuck with me late at night trying to calm me down, nursing my self inflicted wounds.
I'm sure you thought you were doing the right thing, but to me it was more of a reason to push you away. I did not want to be dependent on your sweetness, on your love for me. I was so conflicted with trying to keep my misery from you yet being so in love with you I did not want to let you go.
I still remember every second of the night I knew we both fell in love with each other. Way before you saw any of the darker side of me. The first time either of us discovered what love was like. It was a Saturday in December. That amazing Saturday. That night will be with us forever no matter how far our paths in life lead us from each other.
We had planned a game night with our group of friends. We were that stupid couple that everyone was getting sick of because we were always all over each other. We kept sneaking off to the bathroom to make out, and our friends would come knocking on the door imploring with us to stop. But we just thought it was funny, so we ignored them and continued.
We left a little early that night for a Saturday and went back to my apartment. I was putting leftovers away in the fridge when you came over to me in my kitchen. You gently pushed my back against my counter and pressed yourself close to me. You cupped my face in your hand and stared into my eyes for what seemed like forever. You gave me a kiss then rested your forehead against mine. We stayed in that moment of admiration of each other in complete silence for an entire 45 minutes. Gently touching and kissing, but mostly just simply being. Being in each others close presence with appreciation. After that 45 minutes, you picked me up and carried me to my bedroom. We stayed in our beautiful silence the rest of the night as we molded into each other, evermore.
No words needed to be spoken, our wavelengths were completely in sync. You did not tell me you loved me until 2 weeks later right before our Christmas break. We kept it to ourselves for a while. Trust me as a young girl in college it was very hard not to tell my friends that you had told me you loved me. But every time we were with them for the next 3 weeks, you would either lip it to me from across the room or whisper it into my ear.
The first time I can remember irrationally lashing out on you was right after that on New Years Eve. You were having so much fun, being the life of the party as usual. When midnight came around, you came over to me and gave me a quick kiss, hugged me, and went right back to celebrating with everyone.
And for whatever dumb ass reason... that pissed me off. I honestly could not tell you now what my logical thinking for that fight was, because I am quite certain I did not have one. I was just angry I only had your attention for 2 seconds that night at midnight. You gave me plenty of attention day in and day out, why did I care so much about that moment? We were both having a great time until then. I loved that you wanted to be the life of the party, it was one of your characteristics I admired the most.
I got so mad at you though, and I dragged all our friends into it the rest of the night making it a big deal. You tried to reason with me, but feeling that need to retreat again, I fled. I drove home by myself and ignored you the rest of the night. I did even more than that, I broke up with you. I pushed you away so hard. After I realized what a terrible mistake I had made, you were already too mad at me and you did not forgive me until after Valentines day.
But that was just the start of our issues.
February 5th, 2012. In Indianapolis, the New York Giants played the New England Patriots for the 46th Superbowl.
I am not a fan of football. I never was growing up. I went to the games sometimes growing up to socialize but I could never be there for long. To this day I still have to wait miserably for the football season to pass. My negative association with football comes from that dark night when I was 13 years old and a football player robbed me of something that was very precious to me.
February 15th, 2012 we decided to give our relationship another chance. We were both eager to be back in others embraces and it felt like love lost was found. But that peace between us didn't last long did it Ryan?
It lasted until February 22nd, 2012. Which is when we had our next big fight. That day I remember because it was the day I truly stopped trusting you. I never told you that, but I did not trust who you were as a person anymore. It did not matter what sweet things you did, this day would remain in the back of my mind for the next 2 years. Before this day, you were Prince Charming and I was just a messed up commoner with deep issues who did not deserve you. At least that is how I had felt in my mind.
That all changed when I asked you a question. Your answer was something that would hit me like a big slap across my face. It hurt, and I was completely surprised.
On the quiet evening of February 21st, laying on my tiny red love seat in my apartment, Ryan and I were cuddled up watching a movie. It was a calm night in for us. Dinner, movie, bed. The movie ended and while I laid wrapped in his arms he shut the TV off, kissed my forehead. "Lets go to bed babe" he said.
"mmm ok" I said in a hushed quiet tone. I peeled myself off of him and stood up to stretch and let out a giant yawn.
We crawled in bed together, shut the lights off and I nestled back into his arms using his chest as a pillow.
"I love you" I said to him. "I love you too" he softly replied.
"I missed you so much" I continued.
"I missed you a lot too, I know it took a while for me to cool off but I was so hurt, and I was trying to get over you. I thought we were done for good, and that I just lost the first love of my life" he squeezed me into him.
"Its ok, we are here now, and I wont put you through that again. What all did you do while we were apart?" I asked.
"I drank a lot" he replied.
I remembered how Ryan was before him and I dated, how he was a frequent one-night stander of many girls, it was a normal part of his party routine. I took a slight breath in. I wanted to ask him if he had hooked up with anyone while we were not together. We were apart because of me, so I was not going to be mad if he had. A small voice inside advocated that maybe it was best not to know. But I continued the conversation;
"Can I ask you something? You can be totally honest with me, I wont be angry with you at all. We were apart and I cant blame you, but I just want to know."
"You want to know if I slept with someone else." he breathed in and sighed out "Yes I did, but you don't know her"
Ouch. That kind of hurt, but I said I was not going to get upset so I didnt. Still, that did not stop me from plaguing to know more;
"How did you know her? Did you just meet her at a bar? How long ago was it? Was it recent?" I asked as politely as I could to not seem upset.
"Relax babe, what does it matter? It did not mean anything, it was just sex and I was missing you so badly" he replied.
"I know that, but I just would like to know.. please?" I pleaded once more.
"Ok, well it was at my Dad's Superbowl party that he does every year. He invites like 100 people. You were supposed to go with me this year, it is a big deal. So I was sitting in a chair, drinking and being really mopey. She came over and sat on my lap. And one thing led to another and it kind of just happened that night after the party.I never spoke to or saw her again."
Well that didnt seem so bad. "Thank you for telling me" I told him. "Just curious, what was her name?"
"Her name is Joanna"
"hmmm alright" I replied. I did not feel any animosity in that moment.
We drifted off to sleep, breathing in, collectively cuddled in to each other.
The next day we were talking, and again got on a conversation of his Dad's superbowl party. While listening to Ryan tell me the dumb stories of his egotistical father and how he was acting coolly towards his mom during that party, I had a glimpse of panic as I remembered something Ryan had told me before the Holidays.
The night Ryan told me he loved me the first time, we also had some pretty deep conversations about our lives and shared some secrets with each other. He was telling me a lot about his father that night. His father had been in the military when he was younger and then continued on to be an engineer for Lockheed Martin. He told me that when he was 9 years old, his Dad got very angry with him one night for something. And he beat him very badly. Ryan told me it was something he never forgot because it was the most physical pain he has ever felt.
I really don't like Ryan's father.
But there was one more secret Ryan had let slip to me that night. He told me his father had cheated on his mother with a secretary from work. He said she was basically a gross cougar and the office slut. He told me she had slept with many people from his Dad's work, and that his mom did not know about it yet. But his sisters knew, and that is how he knew.
This particular family secret was the one that struck a pain of fear right through my heart. When he was telling me about his father's indiscretion that night, he had mentioned this older woman's name.
Her name was Joanna.
Her. Name. Is. Joanna. Wow. There is no way this is the same woman he was talking about last night. His one-night stand during our break up?
It was enough on it’s own that Ryan willingly slept with a woman he knew his father did. His father had cheated on his mother with this woman.
What was I supposed to do with this information? I felt sick. I sat there still, pretending to listen to Ryan talk. I chose to stay silent for a day to think about how I wanted to handle knowing he had shared a woman with his father. When I did decide to ask Ryan about it, I was in for one more surprise. Ryan had not told me the whole story about that night, and for good reason. But now, I needed to know every little detail.
I sent Ryan a text during my Ecology class. Hey can you come over after my class? I have something I want to talk to you about. A moment later my phone buzzed, sure, is everything ok? I certainly did not want to get into this on text so I sent a passive reply. I have to pay attention, I will just see you there.
K. I received a few moments later. I let out a big sigh, oh man this was not going to be an easy night for me.
Our professor let us out a few minutes early. I gathered my things into my book bag and headed out of the building to walk home. It was a night class, so I was walking home in the dark while the moon shined through the trees on campus. I counted each street lamp I passed on my way trying to keep my mind off of the grenade I knew I was about to unhinge.
Eight. Eight street lamps until I was at the entrance door of my apartment. My apartment was in a very old building right on campus that I could barely afford. I opened up the gigantic creaky wooden door and stepped inside to the grand staircase in the entry room. This building used to be a house when the town was first built and belonged to a very wealthy doctor and his family. Someone over the last 150 years had converted it to apartments. They maintained all the originality so it had a marvelous vintage appeal.
I went into my apartment and set my things down. I poured myself a glass of white wine and sat at the bay windows that overlooked the yard in my living room. I silently awaited Ryans arrival.
About 10 minutes later, Ryan swung open my front door. He never knocked, he just came in. He strolled over to me, his energy was light and happy. Great. I was about to ruin his happy mood.
“Hey babe” He gave me a kiss and sat next to me “How was class?”
“Ecology is my favorite, you know that, so it was good” I said.
“Thaaaat’s great” He scooted closer to me by lifting my legs over him and gave me another kiss. I hesitated the kiss in return, so he backed his head away.
“Ok….. what is it?” He asked sarcastically.
I exhaled another big sigh, “Well, I wanted to talk to you about what happened at your Dad’s superbowl party…. more particularly the girl you said you slept with”
“I thought you said you weren’t upset about that, and was happy I was being honest with you” he said with a stern tone.
Great, here we go. “I wasn’t until I remembered where I heard that name Ryan.” I snarled back at him. “You were not completely honest with me, it was not a girl you slept with it was a woman, and it is the same woman your Dad slept with last year!” At this point I realized I had raised my voice, so I took sip of wine and tried to calm down. I did not realize how mad I was about this until now. I was not just hurt, I was mad.
“Wow… why does it matter, it was just sex. And we were not together” he said.
“Oh my god, you seriously do not see how gross it is that you slept with a woman you know your father slept with?” I was utterly confused. How did he not understand this? How did he not see what I am seeing in this situation?
Ryan remained silent.
“How did this even happen, Ryan, honestly, like where in your mind did you think it was ok to let that woman sit on your lap at your family’s house, and then take her back to your room and sleep with her?”
My need to know everything has gotten me into some tough situations throughout my life. I wish I could have just shutup and stopped asking him questions about it. It just did not seem like something Ryan would do. Yes, he was a man-hoe before, but with young college girls at our school. It did not seem to me that this would be something in his character that he would think of on his own. What I learned that night after much probing was an insight to how disturbing a fathers influence can be.
Apparently, Ryan had been so depressed during our breakup that his father had an idea to cheer him up at the Superbowl party. That idea, was named Joanna. His father had instigated the entire thing. He told her to go sit on his lap, he joked about them sexually doing things together to them. He took Ryan aside and suggested that he sleep with Joanna as a way of helping to get over me.
The story just kept getting more twisted the more I found out. The entire time, Ryan remained contingent to his innocence. He just did not understand how I thought it was such a big deal. To him it was not a big deal.
To me it was a moral depiction of his character. I don’t know what to call a character who would let his Dad convince him to sleep with a woman he cheated on his mother with. I just know it was not good, and a moral boundary for me.
This incident was a hot topic to our conversations for a couple weeks. I had a very hard time letting it go. I was starting to feel like a righteous asshole, and I eventually ended up convincing myself that even though it was a moral boundary for me, did not mean it had to be for Ryan.
I told him I would let it go. I never truly let it go, but I did not let it be a part of our relationship anymore. As disgusted as I was by this, I loved him enough to try and work past it.