Why Can't I Forget

When I was fifteen, I was young, innocent, and knew very little about the opposite sex.
I fell in love with this young man, Arthur.
We'd have lunch together, he'd walk me to class, and every now and then hold my hand and steal a sweet, youthful kiss. He took me to prom, I was a freshman and he was a junior, and it was, to this day, the best date I've ever had. I've never felt more beautiful, and I've never had more fun dancing. He took me home and asked me to be his girlfriend and gave me a kiss on my front porch.
We dated for a summer, nothing serious besides my feelings and budding sexuality. I was terrified of sex, but I'd never had these kinds of feelings before. At the end of the summer, Art broke up with me, but I never forgot. I am still broken-hearted. I've been with other men, and I've grown into a confident, educated, and independent woman. I'm married, have a child, and it's been 7 years since then. I love my husband... but never in the way I loved Art.
Throughout high school and in-between boyfriends, Arthur and I spent a little time together. We made love.... or at least I made love in the most literal sense of the phrase.... It's incomprehensible how much feeling I felt in our time together in comparison to other men. He is such a beautiful person. I never had real enough courage to tell him how much I loved him... but I think he knew it. He was guilty, and it more than likely tore him to pieces every time I asked to be his and he said no. I don't understand why he never cared for me the way I did for him. I know I am a good woman- I'm pretty, intelligent, and generally a good person.
I don't know much about what he's doing with his life... but as far as I know it doesn't look like he's had many committed relationships. I could be wrong. But if I'm right, why? Is he gay? Did he love me? What's the reason? There's women that are friends of his... who I can certainly tell have had feelings for him as well. I can see it in the way they look at him... and it's no wonder, even now.
A few months ago, Art was in an accident that left him a paraplegic. It's been driving me crazy how much I just wish I could see him, comfort him, simply offer him... anything. It's profound to me how positive his response has been (all observed from the sidelines with no direct contact). In the past three years, I've rarely seen him, much less spoken to him. I've met my husband, and we are committed to our lives together, although he will probably never know the depth of these feelings.
Recently, I saw Arthur at a funeral, and just like every time I happen to see him, just being near him sends me into a swirling depression, and I'm just suffering thinking about him. I barely knew the girl who died, the awful reason I went was because I desperately wanted to see him and I knew he'd be there...
After the funeral, my heart beat so hard at saying hello to him, I ran to my car and hyperventilated thinking about how the right thing to do would be just to return home and concentrate on forgetting. Instead, I returned to make small talk with his friends (not a word to him), with fake smiles and glances. I wish I knew what he thought of me now. My only words to him were so stupid... I don't even know why I said them. They simply came out with me patting his arm, "Still handsome, Art." Stupid. ....Stupid.
These feelings belittle my relationship with the husband, and are ubsurdly selfish thinking about how Art's been dealing with his new life and experiences. He probably doesn't think of me at all... but for the past seven years every relationship and kiss has been the second choice. Therapy hasn't worked, and life continues on in it's way. I don't know why feel... unresolved... like there's a door left open somewhere. I feel so guilty, thinking of my husband. I know in my heart that it's all a fantasy, I created this perfect individual in an imperfect relationship. I fantasize about taking the forgetting-procedure in the movie, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. I desperately wish these feelings would go away, don't understand why I can't get over this silly, one-sided, and childish first love. ....Why can't I just FORGET?
stillthinkingofyou stillthinkingofyou
22-25, F
3 Responses Nov 26, 2012

Oh my, you're are an incredibly strong woman. Right now you are probably around 22, if I calculated correctly. To think something as one person can change someone whole future. Since I the same age as you were, I have little experience with love. I honestly am a little jealous of the time you lived. But I think It would be better to look at the situation in a different point of view.. I would cherish the happiness they gave to me and forever have space for them in my heart. Accepting that it was in the past it hard, and seeing them brings all the moments you don't want to see again because it breaks your heart to let go. Love us wonderful.. I hope one day the warmth and compassion you have for him will become strength for you and your family. I admire your ability to not let go, but when you realize they are living under the same sky you are, you know that my a chance in life and in your heart, you're connected.

Thank you for reading and replying to my story.
There's so many forms of love in this world, but that first one... I don't know why things are the way they are. Letting go is one of the hardest things for me, I don't understand it.

Anything to help! All I can do is support you from another world. But you have to start. We are all humans and get emotionally attached to many things. Just accept him and close your eyes. Think of the wonderful memories you can tell your kids about your first love. How you learned from them. Everything will be okay. You'll be fine. I trust you.

I have good news and bad news.

The bad news is that no one is capable of forgetting their first love. It's an unfortunate burden that we need to carry for the rest of our lives.

The good news is that you can at least shrink the feeling, and get your mind to not focus on it anymore.

One and only rule: Completely force yourself to forget about it. Do not try to make contact with him. Do not talk about him. Do not watch him, not even on the sidelines. Don't even think about him. Banish him from your thoughts. Basically, keep away from him and anything that reminds you of him. You will develop a thin web of protection from bad feelings, that can be easily broken.

It sounds bad, but sadly, it's the best you can do.

i kinda get wat u mean.