b) Other People's Psychotic Breakdowns Can Be Scary!
is obvious so we won't belabor the point. I don't know what your actual
chances of dumping an Obsessive Psycho Stalker or a Fatal Attraction-type
Person are but it does happen. Let's just hope it doesn't happen to
Even when the
person you are dumping is not ordinarily psychotic, getting dumped
by someone who doesn't even acknowledge their existence usually leads
to a certain amount of temporary psychosis in anyone. It makes people
feel invisible. It also often leads them to wonder if you didn't have
human feelings for them because they aren't actually human. And maybe
everyone else who treats them like they are human is just pretending
and they are actually all alone in this world as a
horrible alien freak that everyone hates and plots against,
precisely so they will have this kind of horrible dumping experience,
which undoubtedly will be repeated over and over again throughout
their horrible miserable alien freak lifetime.
This kind of subconscious
thinking tends to upset people.
Often it leads
to a sudden outbreak of panic. And this is all fairly natural. Most
people have a little evolutionary nodule in their brain stem that
functions as a 'I'm Invisible and People Aren't Going to Acknowledge
Me as Human Because I'm a Horrible Alien Freak!' receptor site.
This is because
being treated as a human being with human feelings by Other People
is actually a fairly fragile state of affairs. The fragile web of
decency we all prefer is often broken by prejudice, ignorance, stupidity,
malice, meanness, and the general tendency of human societies to pick
on some people really really really badly. People routinely get turned
into slaves, and gladiators, and are made to wear burkas, or get burned
at the stake as witches, or get classified as untouchables or get
lynched and so on, all by Other People. They get beaten to death for
who they sleep with, or what they wear, or their hair, their religion,
their skin color, and sometimes just because. And all of this in spite
of the fact that all of the Other People we human beings have slaughtered
and tortured to death over the years, have in fact been human people
with human feelings and not the Horrible Alien Freaks we have treated
them like. Our mistake. Their misfortune.
Now, the person
you have dumped may not know much about history but their evolutionary
brain stem does and it knows for goddamn sure that being treated like
you are invisible and have no human feelings is a very very bad sign.
And the brain stem doesn't like it one bit. So it tends to freak.
Now some people
won't panic very much at your atrocious behavior because they will
quickly realize that you are, after all, a little shit and what you
think isn't important. Of course the people who are most likely
to panic and get really really weird are the ones you are most
likely to want to use this dumping technique on because they are
in fact the ones who do most resemble horrible alien
freaks. Which is why we are again going to hope the Fatal Attraction
type scenario doesn't happen to you and we are also going to take
this opportunity to gently suggest that you don't sleep with people
who resemble horrible alien freaks. Just a thought.
The best outcome
you can hope for, and after all why not hope for it, is that the person
you slept with who resembles a horrible alien freak didn't like
you either. In which case they will be just as glad not to hear
from your sorry ass ever again. This happens. And when it does, you
can heave a hearty sigh of relief.
If, however, the
person you are dumping isn't usually treated like a horrible alien freak,
they will often try to resist being treated like one now, as well as
the inevitable implication that they actually are one. This will make
them call you up and try to figure out what's going on. This is often
followed by flattery, begging, apologies or other attempts to force
you to admit they are not an alien freak by pretending to be nice to
When this doesn't
work, they will need to express pain and frustration in their unanswered
messages as they fight off the horrible and growing spectre of alien
freakness. Next, they will need to express anger and hatred as the battle
against alien freakness intensifies. Then they will need to move into
contempt, disgust and dismissal as they classify you as a little shit
and thereby vanquish the implication that there's something wrong with
them instead of you.
During this stage,
they will often want to explain to you exactly why you are a little
shit who means nothing to anyone. Sometimes this is accompanied by a
lengthy explanation of why they themselves are a Good Person and a listing
of many reasons why they are not an alien freak. This is the natural
and inevitable I Know You Dumped Me but I'm Not a Goddamn Horrible
Alien Freak Cycle.
In this case, because
you dumped them in a brutal way, they will have to do all of this without
actually being able to get ahold of you. If they are unable to express
these feelings on your answering machine, in your email, or by letter,
rest assured they are expressing them to someone else.
All of this will
be somewhat scary to you or should be, because Other People's pain and
rage is supposed to be scary and make you feel bad. It is often a little
frightening as well to get a look inside someone else's horribly insecure
and apparently psychotic mind. Which is what will happen because the
poor person you have dumped is forced by your silence and avoidance
to engage in a lengthy and bitter conversation with themselves which
they are going to want to force you to overhear.
Now, your goal while
you are being alarmed and feeling bad about the Other Person's I'm Not
A Horrible Alien Freak Cycle is to root for the cycle to come to a successful
conclusion in which they develop contempt for you. It's somewhat against
your interests to root for Other People to have contempt for you, which
is another reason why you shouldn't use this Dumping Technique too often,
but it will be your natural self-preservative instinct.
Contempt and dismissal
are what's going to make them go away and stop trying to get in touch
with you and babble about closure and so on. Again, do this too often
and you will truly begin to believe that you deserve Other People's
contempt and then you will have to pretend you don't care about that
although really you do and you will be Pretty Fucked Up once again.
But in the meantime, when you are listening to an answering machine
message from the person you dumped who is having a Psychotic Breakdown
(because you can't help listening, now can you?), you should chant 'hate
me, despise me, dismiss me, and go away.' 'Hate me, despise me, dismiss
me, and go away.' When their messages take steps in this direction silently
praise them - 'ah thank God, sounds like you are moving toward contempt
and dismissal and soon I will be free, free, free. Thank you god.' Do
this until they are gone.
Okay, very good.
Congratulations! You have survived the very dangerous dumping by avoidance
experience. You rock! Now, remind yourself of what a harrowing experience
that was and promise yourself you'll never do that again.
Now that we have
convinced you to avoid Option #1, let's move on to Option #2.
#2: Dumping By Talking.
This is the one
you were anticipating and dreading, right? Because you could figure
out avoidance all on your own, but talking, now that seems
complicated. Of course, it is and it isn't. But here at prettyfedup.com
we are going to make it seem so complicated that by the time
you are finished reading all the instructions, the actual dumping
process will be a comparative breeze.
Don't worry, you
will complete your first major Dumping Someone exercise with both
confidence and style and a miminum of fuss and pain. That is because
we are going to put you through all the fuss and pain before
you actually have to deal with Other Person you are going to dump.
This is very handy for avoiding embarrassment, panic, and miscues.
So strap on your seatbelt and let's go.
First, we are
going to have you blow off a little steam and get rid of some nervousness
by engaging in Fantasy Exercise No. 1.
No. 1: Think of some really really horrible things to say to someone
you are breaking up with and pretend you are saying them.
Imagine placing a large banner in your living room that says "I
don't love you and I never want to see you again!" Or taking
the Other Person to a restaurant and loudly announcing 'Someone
in this room may like you but it sure isn't me!' Or 'You may have
thought I cared about you, but boy were you ever wrong!' And so
The point of this
exercise is that on some level when you dump someone you are going
to feel like you are saying something really really horrible to them
even if that's not exactly what you want to do. Or even if it is exactly
what you want to do. And that's going to make you feel bad and you're
going to want to repress it, and repressing it is going to make you
nervous. So we want to flush these horrible things from your system
What we want to
avoid here is the accidental Really Horrible Things Saying experience
or the Vicious Ugly Breakup. Because these things really do happen.
You think you are going to have a Civilized Break-up and all of a
sudden the two of you are hurling Vicious Accusations at each other
and someone is crying and sobbing in a public place and people are
getting hurt and one of them is you.
You don't want
these things to come leaping out of your mouth when you're not prepared
for the consequences. So say them beforehand until you are done saying
them. Make them extreme, so every last Horrible Saying impulse is
flushed out. If you make them extreme enough you will get to actually
hear them and realize they're not all true. This will save you a lot
of time and trauma down the road because otherwise part of you is
going to believe they really are true.
This has to do
with the Horrible Alien Freak theory. On some level, you know the
implication of a break-up is that you are saying the Other Person
is a horrible alien freak and of course you don't want to deal with
the consequences of that and the 'I Know You Dumped Me, But I'm Not
a Goddamn Alien Freak' Cycle. You can't avoid this entirely, but you
can be prepared and be clear in your own mind about how much You Are
A Horrible Alien Freak accusation actually underlies your Dumping
Impulse. And then plan accordingly.
If you'd like
to make things more complicated for yourself and delay actually having
to confront the person a while longer, feel free to analyze your situation
and place it into one of these four categories:
No. 1: You don't love them and they don't love you. (You lucky
bastard, this is the easiest breakup.)
No. 2: You don't love them and they do love you. (This is what
you secretly believe and why you are dreading things so much and
fearing the I'm Not a Goddamn Alien Freak Cycle.)
No. 3: You do love them and they don't love you. (This is the
self-preservation break-up and it's hard.)
No. 4: You do love them and they love you but for some stupid
reason you think you have to break up. Special category. This includes
things like you think they aren't the right religion or whatever.
I can't really do anything about the fact that you want to walk
away from love when millions of people all over the world are desperate
to find it, but you can still use the techniques.
If you're in Category
No. 2, you're going to want to flush out phrases like 'You're a Horrible
Alien Freak!' And if it's No. 3, you're going to want to flush out
phrases like 'You've always treated me like shit!' And so on.
Just keep thinking of all the horrible things that are in the back
of your mind and say them out loud to yourself. Or silently to yourself.
It's not like I care. Just get rid of all the stuff you are afraid
the Other Person is going to think or feel or say or that You might
think or feel or say. Have fun with them. Make them extreme. The point
here is not to freak yourself out by thinking all these things are
going to happen and are real, the point is to push them all the way
into outrageous fantasy-land where they can't hurt you. Absurdity.
Over the topness. Vicious Accusations. All the terrible, fun, wonderful
things you'd say if you didn't have to be a responsible person and
you could say anything you wanted to. Remember to say them loudly
to yourself so you can hear them. Wear yourself out.
Okay, five minute
break while you say some incredibly socially irresponsible terrible
things and get away with it. You clever bastard you!