Saving Face

tangledThe tables had turned, and the shoe was now on the other foot. Whatever cliché she wanted to throw at it, the situation had changed to her satisfaction. Finally. After all those years, she finally felt some closure about the way he had treated her.

Of course, she hadn’t known it at the time. He was the kind of guy who did things behind her back, unfortunately setting the tone for future relationships. She took people at face value and trusted them, especially being such a young woman, but not everyone deserves that respect. Tricksters like him needed to earn that loyalty, a hard lesson learned by dating him.

Life can kick a girl in the ass to wake her up and teach her a hard lesson. And, so early on, this was one of those times.

The lies. Her incredible naiveté. Only a girl who already had intimacy issues would believe the whoppers he told. Even though she felt so grown up dating much older boys, those who’d already graduated.

A few friends knew of his misgivings, about the other girls he dated behind her back. They didn’t tell her, though. One of the many ways women let each other down. Trusting that pig was easier than believing something she didn’t want to hear.

What teenage girl doesn’t want to believe her boyfriend thinks she is beautiful and will love only her? He wouldn’t dare leave town to visit his parents but actually have another girl in the car instead. Surely that girl had forced herself on him and planted the hickey on his neck just to piss her off. That’s what he claimed.

She wondered what kind of slut does that.

Good guys didn’t do things like that. It was the girl’s fault. Nice boyfriends swayed opinions, they called her parents “Mom” and “Dad” to force a good impression. Those nice fellas talked about going on a couple’s cruise one day, getting married and putting a ring on a girl’s finger to assure the promise.

Those guys don’t ask her friends to come see a new puppy but not mention it to his girlfriend. There would never be a girl leaving his house at the same moment his girlfriend arrived and claim she’d dropped off a lost baseball glove. And those guys would certainly never pass along a nasty little sexually transmitted infection.

They don’t set such an ugly precedent for that girl’s future. Not a great guy like him.

Time and trouble bring a greater wisdom, though.

The inevitable split was less than amicable, and he’d told his friends it was her doing. That she’d left a surprise party he hosted for her, with another guy no less. Yet one more lie. Funny. It was March, and her birthday was in August.

He was so full of shit.

He had the nerve to call years later saying he needed a friend who would listen. The tears in his voice only fueled her scorn, but she was glad to not see him cry in person. He’s an ugly crier. Scoffing at someone over the phone is a lot easier than face-to-face.

To squeeze in a final cliché, she who laughs last laughs loudest. In response to his request for a shoulder to cry on, she replied that he was “the most worthless-piece-of-crap-poor-excuse-for-a-human-being she’d ever met in her life” and to, in no uncertain terms, never call her again. “Forget you ever had this number,” she blasted as she slammed down the receiver.

Satisfaction leached from her pores for such ugly words. The long overdue message’s release broke the silence of her soul. A great resolve filled the space resentment had once occupied. She promised herself to never fall for a liar ever, ever again.

Until the next time.

*This post was prompted by the line he’s an ugly crier by LM Leffew.



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