Always wanted to read the articles Jane writes for Scarlet, the fictional magazine inspired by Cosmopolitan featured on The Bold Type? We have too. Luckily, sexologist Shannon Boodram has channeled the voice of Jane and done just that. Read the first piece Jane ever wrote for Scarlet in the pilot then watch the episode again right here on Freeform.
How do you find the man you love when you can’t see through your own tears? This is the question that ran through my mind like ticker tape as I stood alone on my birthday in Grand Central Station.
I waited for more hours on that spot and in that station than my psyche will allow me to admit. I waited to wake up, I waited to regain some feeling in my legs but mostly I waited for my now-ex to reappear in the thick of the crowd and yell, “Just joking, don’t be crazy, I’m crazy about you!”
Obviously he didn’t.
So yes, I was dumped on my birthday and if you don’t believe me, just ask half of Manhattan. We were supposed to go away for the weekend and just before we boarded our train he turned and declared that he didn’t want to do this. Not the train, not the trip, the relationship.
It is said that all is fair in love and heartbreak because most people have a fairly equal track record of those who have rejected them to those they have rejected. But reminding yourself of the kid in grade school who handed you a suspiciously-damp-love letter that you later threw in the garbage, doesn’t change the fact that you are torn in two when the tables turn.
Heartbreak can become an actual medical condition. I know this because being the left brain that I am, I spent the first few weeks of turmoil trying to explain the feeling away instead of truly processing it. I also learned that romantic love is not a feeling, it is a compulsion and basic need similar to hunger (we always want to eat but nothing makes us hungrier than knowing we can’t). In addition love is an addiction one that Dr. Helen Fisher described as mirroring the high of cocaine. Although in hindsight I wish I gave myself some space to grieve I also acknowledge that my obsession with understanding was fueled by the fact that I simply could not. He never spoke to me again so I never got direct closure and to boot he doesn’t have social media so I couldn’t even piece together a few captions to infer the kind of explanation I was robbed of.
So I guess at this point you might be thinking it sounds kind of like I am not over the love that left me. I guess there is some truth to that, when I see a Brooklyn brownstone in passing or in person I remember us sitting and sharing on those very steps. When I hear a guitar I think of how the same notes vibrated against his fingers. But on the flipside when I see my future self: happy, accomplished and loved, I can not picture him within 100 miles of it. And that is how you get over your ex who hurt you and no longer deserves you, you acknowledge their place and purpose in your past but deny them access to your future. Like any addiction you get over it with time, an ironclad-support team, healthy distractions and closure on your terms not theirs.
Denial, anger, bargaining, depression then finally acceptance - getting over love is not an errand it is a massive undertaking. When I first began writing this piece it was under the title “How to Stalk Your Unstalkable Ex” but after a week of trying and testing this method I realized you can’t understand the past by obsessing over the present and maybe the greatest gift my ex gave me was ghosting on me. I can’t hold onto a man I can’t see which is great since you should never hold on to anyone who can’t see your worth. Granted a vacation on my birthday would have been cool too but I think this gift suits me much better in the long run.
Written for Freeform by Shannon Boodram
Follow Jane as she builds her confidence and writing skills at one of New York's top women's magazines, Scarlet.