An old friend came to visit me in Italy for a few weeks. We’ve just finished an absolute tear of a trip through Rome, Florence, Lucca, Cinque Terre, Bologna, Venice and Milan. But as much fun as it was, it had to end with me telling her to forget about me forever and get on with her life.
This girl was more than just a hook-up. For over a year before I left the country, she was the main squeeze. She was my friend-girl. She was a best friend with benefits. She was my statistically significant other. However many girls I was dealing with on the side while dating her, she was always something special to me. I am as pro-game and anti-marriage as any guy you’ll ever meet, but that doesn’t mean I’m anti-love. Remember, The Cynics Are Deluded Too.
“But for a man with the confidence and understanding of female psychology that Game provides, relationships can be awesome. A woman in love is a joy to be around. She is pleasant, giving, sweet, fun, and a source of energy and inspiration in your life. She works hard to bring happiness and value to your life, takes pride in her appearance, and looks at you with wide, admiring eyes. A happy relationship takes zero effort on your part, and allows you to spend your energy pursuing other goals, while returning to your woman to recharge, vent your daily victories and setbacks, and bask in the energizing presence of someone who genuinely believes in you, your mission, and your ability to achieve it. A weak, unskilled man will never inspire this sort of love, and so will never reap these rewards.“
Our relationship was always complicated by our difference of opinions on the monogamy question, but we could always pull off a fine impression of a disgustingly cute and passionately in love couple lounging in bed on a Sunday morning. It was fun, it was easy, and I will always treasure the experience of having fallen in love with this beautiful, smart, sweet, sensitive girl.
But seven months ago, I left her in North America along with the rest of my life, so I could fly to Bangkok and start chasing… something. We mostly broke off contact while I was in Southeast Asia and India, but she asked to meet up for a few weeks and I was happy to say yes.
Our time in Italy was one last hurrah, one final roll through the mud of love. Sometimes it was bittersweet. Mostly it was just sweet. But it ended the way it always had to, with me telling her that we didn’t want the same things in life, and that it’s in her best interest to start getting over me. She’s twenty-seven and wants to have a family. I’m twenty-seven and I have other plans for the next decade. I’m pretty sure I could have convinced her to continue waiting for me to, in her words, just be a good man, but that’s not in either of our best interests.
We parted ways at Stazione Centrale in Milano, as she waited to board the 3:00pm express to Rome. She had held it together pretty well until a half an hour before boarding, at which point the waterworks began in earnest:
“I’m just so frustrated. We could have been so good. We could have been so happy. I know you want the same things I want. I know you value the same things I do. I can picture our lives together so easily, and it hurts so much that you don’t want it.”
I pulled her head back from my shoulder and smirked back at her tear-streaked face: “You know, you’re right. I think I’m going to move back in August for good, and we can start shopping for a nice three or four bedroom in Hintonburg.We’ll host lots of awesome dinner parties, our team will win the city Ultimate championship, we’ll spend our nights at the best restaurants and bars in the city, and then we’ll have four kids over the next ten years, one daughter and three sons. They’ll all be just as tall, brilliant, good-looking and cool as us, if not more, and the combination of my sociopathy and your mushy empathy will produce healthy, well-adjusted personalities. ”
She broke into a sad smile and buried her head back on my chest: “Stop it. You’re just making me cry harder.”
I said, “I think you’re doomed to cry right now no matter what. Hell, even I might be getting a little misty. Either that or I have to sneeze.”
“You’ve never cried over us, have you?”
“I’m not much for crying, woman. You know that. But you also know that I love you, and that I’m going to miss you.”
“Oh God, I love you so much. I just wish we had been born some other time, and this could have worked. We could have been so good, Frost, So good.
* * *
And she’s absolutely right. In a monogamous world, we could have had a nice little life together. This girl really was the whole package. She coulda been a contender. But in the world we live in, I’m off to chase sloots in France and Spain, while she’s going home to build an E-harmony profile. I hope it works out well for her, but reality is what it is, and reality is not kind to women in their late 20s who’ve had a taste of real masculine polarity in a relationship.
As for me, though it hurts to close the door on this girl, I’m damn excited for what comes next. As free as I’ve been, there’s always been a part of me that held back from new girls, emotionally if not physically.
So, a moment of silence please, while I play our song:
(Dear keyboard warriors, I had a great relationship with an incredible girl. I experienced one of the life’s greatest pleasures, passionate and requited love, the praises of which mankind’s poets can’t stop singing: Was that beta?)
Anyways. As beautiful as the past was, it is now the past. On to business.
What am I going to do?
Well, I just so happen to know of a blog that’s chock-full of pearls of wisdom, such as this fine post on How To Deal With A Breakup:
1) Hit the gym
A funny thing happens to a man’s body when he’s in a relationship. His testosterone levels drop, all the better to make him into a sensitive, Grey’s Anatomy-watching cuddle-buddy who will keep a pair bond stable and dull. You need to metaphorically inject yourself with a dose of the manly molecule ASAP, before the combination of low-T and loneliness send you spiraling into wussiness. Get your ass under a squat rack, lift heavy regularly, and you’ll feel like a grizzly rather than a teddy bear.
Check. Just got back from a heavy hour of pushups, pullups, handstand pushups, jump squats, shadow boxing, and three sprints up a 200 metre, 45 degree incline hill outside the Auberge De Jeunesse in Lyon. Grrrr.
2) Get in shape
Partially covered above, but relationships have a tendency to catalyze the growth of spare tires around the midsections of ensnared men. Put yourself on a healthy diet, incorporate sports and light physical activity into your lifestyle, and if you must torment your body with liquor, drink like a paleolithic alcoholic.
Work in progress. After three months of hard sparring in Thailand, I was a beast. After a month of vegetarian food and yoga in Rishikesh, I was lean, flexible and quiet-minded as fuck. Now, after a month of wine, gigantic meals, and almost zero exercise, I am the definition of skinny-fat. I suppose I don’t look all that different with a shirt on then I used to, but I miss being a lean, mean killing machine. Solution: Leave the bread and pasta on the table and hit the surf hard. Mix in yoga, convict conditioning, and find some weights to throw around in Hossegor.
3) Make a budget
Unless this is your first time here, you know better than to consistently pay for a girl in a relationship. But the transition to being single will throw a wrench into your best-laid financial plans. Bar tabs, condoms, drink dates, sexual health clinic visits, and all sorts of costs incidental to the single life enter your income statement. Maybe you’re even shopping for a new apartment.
Whatever the case, your financial situation is now different. Take this opportunity to consider what expenses you can do without. Make a financial plan that keeps you happy, and lets you sock a few bucks away for when you want to quit your job and travel the world.
Fuck a budget in the ear. As always, I’m going to try to avoid dropping coin on stupid shit. But will I ever turn down a potentially great experience because it costs a few Euros? Nahh.
4) Fuck everything that walks…
…And then find some wheelchair-bound sloots to top it all off. Go to the bar. Go to the coffee shop. Introduce yourself to girls. Have sex with them. Get their phone numbers. Have sex with them. Go on (cheap) dates. Have sex with them.
If you were in a moderately serious relationship, you probably spent 5-20 hours a week with the girl. So now you have a lot of free time. Are you going to fill that time with a) Tears, b) Video games, or c) Sluts? Door number three is the correct answer, gentlemen. It is very, very hard to feel sorry for yourself when you’re consistently getting laid with girls who are at least as attractive as your ex.
Fait attention, mes petites dévergondées françaises!
5) Learn game
Yeah, I know. You already have game. You’ve banged XX girls, or even XXX. Well, I hate to break it to you friend, but you’ve gotten soft. Lay a saucer of milk out every night for the hardest cat on the block, and he’ll be doing a Garfield impression on your stoop before the year’s out.
You’re only as good as your last set. And your last set was a while ago. Review some classic material, and start racking up approaches. Your mind has forgotten a lot of what it knew about the dynamics of conversations with new women. You need to re-learn that unconscious competence.
One would think that I’d be rusty, after two barren months in India and a month of domestication in Italy (albeit with one week on the prowl in between). But I feel dangerous. I don’t have enough data to confirm this yet, but I think a month of meditation did… something.
6) Re-evaluate your life
Breakups suck, but they can also serve as catalysts for all sorts of necessary changes in your life. When two people are in an intimate relationship, part of who they are becomes consumed by the dual identity they’ve forged with their partner. The sickeningly close couples who do everything together and finish each other’s sentences are an extreme example, but even two people in a non-co-dependent relationship will lose a piece of themselves. It’s not even necessarily a bad thing.
But now that you’re single, you have a rare opportunity to cast aside the assumptions you’ve been trapped in. Change and personal growth often feeds back on itself, building up momentum. When you make small changes, bigger ones start to seem possible. If your girlfriend broke up with you, use the chaos in your life to completely reinvent yourself as whoever yo want to be.
Meh. My life is great, and the past six months has been a period of constant introspection and re-evaluation. I expect that to be ongoing, but it’s unrelated to any one girl.
7) Become too good for her
The end of a relationship is a scary time, because each person must immediately (and subconsciously) conduct a bottom-up reassessment of their sexual marketplace value. Once upon a time, you and the lady made the mutual decision that you were a fairly close match.
If she ended it, it’s likely because she subconsciously made the decision that she is now too good for you.
So what’s happened in two years? Have you gotten fat? Has your career stalled, and dragged your confidence down with it? Most importantly, have you lost the passion and drive that attracted her to you in the first place?
If so, it is completely within your power to become a better man, and become so much better that the girl you’re currently fighting back tears over, wouldn’t even earn a second glance from you. It’s not healthy to be obsessing over “winning” the breakup, years after the fact. But if you’re in a fragile state, take strength and motivation from whatever sources you can.
I’m not dwelling on becoming too good for this particular girl, because I wish her all the best. Instead, I am going to focus on becoming too good for any girl. I will become so good, that even if I amass a harem of all four billion of the world’s women, I’ll still feel like I’m settling. My friends will say things like, “Frost, we like your four billion woman harem, really, we do. But don’t you think… well, it’s just that you’ve got a lot to offer… and maybe, you know, actually never mind.”
Next week, I’m settling into Soorts-Hossegor for a month of French waves, French wine and French women.
I will resume my daily meditation practice.
I will find a gym and throw some weights around.
Most importantly for you, dear reader, I have notebooks upon notebooks of blog posts and a new book sketched out, and I will be spraying my writing out into the world in an epic literary bukkake, the likes of which the world has never before witnessed.