My phone buzzed with a text from my roommate, instructing me,
in no uncertain terms, to check my email.
Quickly logging in, I flipped open the room-draw email and scanned the lengthy text—and then I saw it.
I had gotten the room I wanted, but so had he. My mind
raced. The emotions and memories quickly flooded into my mind, a nauseating pit
forming in my stomach. I shut my eyes, took two deep breaths and sighed: “I don’t
think I can do this.”
But I had to. In two short months, I would be living just two
doors down from the guy with whom, try as I might, I can’t define my relationship.
A first-year in every sense, I’d danced into that first party
and instantly connected with him. From there, we’d hooked up off and on until after the beginning of second
semester, when we finally had ‘the talk,’ and realized we wanted irreconcilably
different things from each other. I had worked so hard to get him out of my life, yet he here was. I
truly couldn’t escape him.
A consortium of 7,000 people seems like a lot, until you
hook up with one of those 7,000 people. You might never have crossed paths with
that one person until the night you met, but once you’ve seen their plaid boxers, they’re
everywhere: the dining halls, North Quad, the Village, the random Scripps dorm of your best friend—or, as in my case, you suddenly have 100 mutual friends.
why it is essential to master the art of nonchalance—not looking frazzled, awkward or like you’ve spent an hour getting ready to see him/her. When things are
glistening and the magic is happening between the two of you, the chance run-in is great. But in those other times, when all you want is to duck into the Hub and wait it out, it’s like pouring salt on a wound.
I became sick of making myself agonize over seeing him, so I
told myself to get over it. I knew that coming to a liberal arts college would give me a well-rounded education, but I had no idea how much it would teach me about the process of transforming an intimate partner to a platonic friend. Here’s how to do it:
1. Do not stalk his/her Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or any other weird social media platform that’s out there.
We all know some stalking occurs the
minute that friend request is accepted by either party.
You sit there and agonize over what that person was doing this weekend if they weren’t with
you. Who is the girl that was tagged in his picture? What does the joke that his friend wrote on his wall mean? It’s creepy, but we all do it. You just have to tell yourself to stop, cold turkey.
Unfollow them on Facebook if needed, but don’t de-friend—that’s too dramatic and obvious. When you see yourself typing their name, don’t.
2. Don’t talk about him/her.
When you like someone, it
seems like everything can relate to him or her in some way. Stop bringing them
up in conversations with your friends. Don’t let yourself make it a big deal in your
head when you see them. If you ease yourself out of worshipping the ground on which they
walk, you’ll realize they’re not that important and definitely not worthy of
your undivided attention.
3. Distract yourself.
Whether this means focusing
on your schoolwork, spending more time with your friends or hooking up with
someone else, do what works best for you. Make yourself comfortably busy so that you don’t have ample time to think about your former relationship.
Once you’ve filled up your schedule with other productive things, you might realize how much more you can
do without them.
The biggest thing for me was getting away
from our former relationship for an extended amount of time. I went from thinking about him every
day to not thinking about him until an Instagram post popped up once every three weeks. I went from ignoring those pictures to even
throwing him a genuine ‘like’ every once in a while. Time allowed me to grow on my own
and realize how irrelevant our one semester of intimacy was in the greater context of my life.
As confident as I was in myself and my ability to move on, I arrived on campus this year with my heart racing, waiting for the moment in which we’d lock eyes. Would all my feelings suddenly
rush back? Would I start crying every time I saw his now-serious
girlfriend walk up the stairs? Would I be able to even talk to him without seeming
like an idiot? Would he think I was stalking him because I lived next door?
And then it happened. I walked into my friend’s apartment, and
there he was. Sitting in a chair, talking earnestly about his summer
escapades. His face turned, he smiled wide, got up and hugged me tight. We
talked about our summers and caught up for about an hour, and I walked away
with relief. I remembered all the
reasons why I had that first connection with him. When I looked beyond the
intimacy we had, I saw the intellectual, caring and funny guy that was to be
So next time you’re walking through North Quad and you see
that special person or even that person from last night, look beyond that, and don’t wait for them to say “hi” first. You do it—even if you just rolled out of bed, are late to
class and haven’t brushed your teeth. Define yourself not just as that person with whom he/she has their most vulnerable moments.
Seven thousand is just a number. It can seem like 15 when you’re sad and avoiding someone, but it becomes a whole lot bigger once you realize
that we all have sex, and we all want to be friends.
Krazy K is undecided with regards to her major and has broken every finger except for her thumb.