I've never been the type to date and not care. If I'm going to spend my time with someone, he's going to be a quality guy who I respect and admire, and I'm going to care about him. So when a relationship doesn't work out, it's hard for me to get over. I'll think about it often, and I'll be sad about the loss.
So what happens when a woman like me breaks Barney Stinson's Platinum Rule and dates someone in her karate class? He seemed smart, fun, interesting, sexy, and kind. But over the six weeks we dated, I saw some red flags. His confidence sometimes turned to cockiness. He would make plans and not follow through. He'd act as if he didn't have to care about my feelings at all, since we weren't yet serious. And it made me feel like shit. So I ended things. And I was very disappointed. The more I got to know him, the more I cared about him. But he didn't care at all.
How was I going to get over this one? I'd have to see him a few times a week at karate. How would I feel? This was new territory for me. And it wasn't fun, but I eventually got over it.
Here's the progression that worked for me; maybe it'll work for you too.
- For the first three weeks after the breakup, cry every day before and after going to karate class. Sometimes cry on the other days too. Friends will tell you to switch schools, but you love the sensei and have friends at the school, so you keep going, and keep crying.
- Try not to punch him. When you see him and he gives you the fake “Have a nice weekend” he says to everyone as he leaves, keep composure. If necessary, make use of the heavy bags hanging around the school. Hope your sensei will pair you up so you can beat the crap out of him.
- Be forced to have the awkward “I've been trying to avoid talking to you, so please leave me alone” conversation when he tries to be friendly. He has nothing of substance to say; he just thinks everything is cool. He needs to get a clue.
- Try to avoid him. Go to the early class, go to the late class, skip a class, go to any class you think he won't be in. Get frustrated when you realize you no longer have any idea what his schedule is like, and you end up in class together anyway.
- Go on a few dates. Come home sad each time, missing him.
- Feeling empowered after class one day, tell him how you feel. You're still upset, he made you feel like shit, and you want him to fix it. He apologizes, seems genuine.
- Be friendly again, and continue to miss him.
- Get totally mind-fucked by him as he gives you huge smiles when he sees you, always asks how you're doing, and stares at you with googly eyes from across the room. But wait… doesn't he have a new girlfriend?
- Try to have a conversation with him away from the karate school to figure out what's going on. Ask him to meet for a beer. Ask him to talk in the park. Ask several times; get ignored several times.
Tell him off, and give up any desire to even be friendly with him. Completely ignore each other at the school.
Freeze your karate school membership. Go on vacation, and make out with a Swedish boy. After vacation, get a trial month at another karate school. Miss your sensei and your karate friends.
Go back to your routine from before you dated. Go to your favorite classes, whenever the time, whether or not he's there. Look hot, and hope you won't be tempted to punch him.