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Memories of my ex-girlfriend Memories of my ex-girlfriend
by Joseph Gatt
2019-04-10 09:25:29
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My ex-girlfriend and I met for the first time in April 2006 and talked for the first time in July 2006. Back then, she had been in a casual relationship with her ex-boyfriend. She and her ex-boyfriend never really broke up, but had casually been seeing each other. She of course, was hoping they could go back to date full-time.

While her casual boyfriend was seeing another girl, my ex-girlfriend decided to make a move on me in July 2006. That meeting was a party with several people invited. My ex-girlfriend held my hand, kept hugging me, and kept whispering to my ear. Still, when I got home that night and checked the school year book to find her name, I found out that she was 9 years older than me, and that put ma aback for a bit. Back then I also had my eyes on a Russian girl who my friend told me was soon coming to Korea, was single, and was “incredibly pretty.”

ex01A combination of the 9 year difference and of waiting for the Russian girl meant I didn't call my ex-girlfriend back to ask her out on a date. The Russian girl came to school in August 2006. The Russian girl wasn't as pretty as my friend claimed she was. I went out on several dates with the Russian girl, but she turned out not being my type. The Russian girl was kind, the curious type, but lacked honesty and straightforwardness.

I forgot about my ex-girlfriend until a party in December 2006 where she was not present but was the focus on the conversation. I found out that she spent several years in the Korean police force, that she was a tough woman, the kind who always stood up for her rights. You don't meet a lot of tough Korean women.

That's when I decided to ask my ex-girlfriend out on a date, and we went on our first date in January 2007. My ex-girlfriend had still been seeing her casual boyfriend and she mentioned him during the date, which should have been a warning sign for me. I just didn't know she was trying to win him back. She also said she wanted to be a researcher and a high-profile politician, which I found very attractive.

We went out on several subsequent dates and our love grew passionate. But she was also very secretive, and that meant I was spending a lot of time alone. I took advantage of the time I had to spend alone to catch up with classic movies and a few books, and of course during the time I was spending alone, she was seeing her casual boyfriend.

The relationship was passionate throughout 2007, but took a step back in 2008. Her casual boyfriend got engaged with another woman, and that caused my ex-girlfriend to have a bout of depression. Nothing tasted good to her, she was constantly negative, nothing in her life seemed to be going smoothly. Once a determined woman with clear life plans, she no longer had life plans.

In late 2008 my ex-girlfriend quit her job, and decided to start studying toward a Ph.D. She was not focused in her pursuit for the Ph.D. but took distances from me. I had to keep chasing her, trying to cheer her up, promising her things would be better in the future. I was learning Korean, hoping that my Korean would soon be good enough to cheer her up in her native language.

She ended up not applying for her Ph.D. and her depression grew deeper. I did not know she was depressed because her casual boyfriend was about to get married. Her casual boyfriend got married in 2009 and her depression grew deeper. Nothing could cheer her up, not even speaking Korean with her.

In 2009 my Korean visa was about to expire and my ex-girlfriend refused to discuss future plans. It's not that she was evading the topic, it's that she would avoid conversation altogether. I had to figure out a future on my own.

In 2010 I had to leave Korea and she decided to try her luck with the diplomatic examination. I cheered her up during the diplomatic examination from Algeria, waking her up every morning and wishing her a good night before she went to bed. Oddly enough, in 2010, she resumed her relationship with her casual boyfriend and she brightened up again.

In 2011 I had plans to go back to Korea. While you would expect my ex-girlfriend to welcome the news, she was anxious about the news and told me not to come to Korea. I was confused, went to Korea anyway. I was so confused about our relationship that I got drunk at Frankfurt airport twice, missing my flight twice. That's how anxious I was to meet her again.

In 2012, my ex-girlfriend passed her diplomatic examination. While we never discussed the future at length, she often said “once I pass my diplomatic examination we will get married and discuss our future at length.” To give you an idea of how little we dated, I never formally proposed to her, because she kept standing me up at dates.

When she passed her diplomatic examination, she was now seriously considering winning back her casual boyfriend, getting him to divorce so he could marry her. He was a wealthy doctor after all, and she wanted his money and his status, more importantly she was in love with him.

In 2013 I lost my job and my ex-girlfriend gradually developed a gambling addiction. The signs for that were that she was always broke, never paid for anything, and disappeared on weekends. She was either with her casual boyfriend or on escapades in the casino.

I was hoping to marry my ex-girlfriend because we had been dating long enough, and because by marrying her I would be hired by the Korean Defense Language Institute as an instructor, which provides free housing and access to a tax-free supermarket for instructors. The workplace was also really nice and I had many friends there, but I had to marry her to get the job. I intended to spend my entire career teaching there back then. 

My ex-girlfriend told me I could only marry her if I got a job, things took a toll for the worse for me, and I ended up in a concentration camp in 2015. My ex-girlfriend, as usual, showed no empathy for my woes, and broke up with me in June 2015, shortly after my liberation from the concentration camp.

We haven't spoken since, but oddly enough she did not delete our pictures from her Facebook profile. The irony is my ex-girlfriend all along kept saying that she would kill me if I cheated on her and that she placed a high premium on fidelity. How did I find out she was seeing another man all along? By snooping on her Facebook profile after we broke up, I found several messages she left on her casual boyfriend's page. That, together with stories she would tell me about other men, coupled with the man's Facebook profile, helped me solve the puzzle. I wasted 10 years of my life.

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