This is the umpteenth time I’m exploring my incredulous lack of curiosity following the unexpected collapse of a budding love affair. And before someone comes across my intimate rampage of feeling things rather deeply, labeling it as plain ‘sexist’, let me tell you more about how and why the boys I have dated. They eventually came running back their guns around a year or two (even a decade) later, as they now finally decide to come from a place of emotionally focused therapy where they once imposed their egos upon the universe. Men, in particular, are not in-tune with their emotions very well, partly because most cultures don’t push for them to develop these skills. And rest aside, things would be much different if they just ‘istened’. But men are taught to ‘toughen up’ in our society, not really express themselves constructively.The unfortunate effect of their most constructive emotions is then most often this: Acting like ‘bulls-in-a-China-shop’ when it comes to dealing with relationships. They end up being overly critical, getting angry (the most insignificant of emotions), thinking of themselves as better, saying mean things, and not understanding the consequences or damage that all of this might be having. Hurting another person with their experiences based on negligence: that is what I call it.Promises are meant to be broken, and I should’ve been more careful before dragging you down into an investment such as myselfIn the thick of the desires of a ‘dating’ life, the occasional emotional upheaval of an unmarried couple, and the numerous stresses and duties that need a team approach to work a committed partnership, one finds themselves wishing for there to be just one clue as to whether they are with the right person or are, in fact, dating the same guy in different packaging. At the end, when it’s all over, you’ll find that acting upon the wisdom of curiosity present in you as early as the first date shouldn’t have ‘killed the cat’, but saved the relationship.Here is a list of things your ex didn’t say to you but should have, and probably will if he’s ever hoping to get some closure. Here is to washing down a little bit of your pain away and making you feel a little less disoriented, to elevating your self-worth to a just a higher place of healing. 1) Thank you for the mug you gifted me on my birthday (and everything else that went along with it). Your display of commitment was more loyal and understanding than I could ever be.It was with me in my bad times along with every other time I would take a good read at the words penned across its shiny ceramic, that it took you hours to find, hours to judge the perfect combination of words that you believed fit our picture of us. It also helped with the smallest of things, like keeping memory cards, coins, and sim card pins safe and sound.I’m sorry for not helping each other stay together for longer. I’m sorry for not appreciating you like you deserved to. I’m sorry I was such a prick, you deserved better from me.2) Thank you for letting me in your life, for being there for me when I needed it, even when I couldn’t do the same. The past me would have raised my voice at you, blocked every attempt of yours at making you feel heard, readily rejected you in every fight while I picked out things to argue about from the very loop of the constant and mundane.I’m sorry for being a thankless man who would always feel the need of caving into the respite of his own head, rather than his into feelings for the only one woman who he said mattered. I’m sorry for lying.3) Thank you for talking to me every minute of the day, for letting me know how much I meant to you, for letting me see how much of your precious time was all mine. We would talk about a trip to the mountains, about our plans to take a break from the country, about seeing things in one coherent perspective, about the current political turmoil in the wakes of a morning and the protests that would happen around, about our exchanges in a few news articles and jokes.I’m sorry I made you feel like a best friend, and then all of a sudden, you were not. I’m sorry I let it all go in the heat of a moment. I’m sorry I was too self-absorbed of a person, for when I said that you weren’t worth it, I blocked out every piece of you that you had ever given to me. I’m sorry it was all about myself.4) What you put me through was hell, but I’m sure I played an equal part. Thank you for making me learn the essence of how love does not exist or develop in such futile time; I realise love is merely a word I used for you to keep you afloat in the abyss of your imagination. Promises are meant to be broken, and I should’ve been more careful before dragging you down into an investment such as myself.I’m sorry for all those times I said I cared about you more than anything in this world. I’m sorry I was confused and frustrated and a mess of a person. I’m sorry for not working through your flaws along with mine, I’m sorry because I didn’t know what I wanted myself back then.5) Thank you for being good to me. You put me on a pedestal so high that I seemed to lose sight of who you actually were.Published in Daily Times, April 17th 2018.