On a treacherous condescending bitch

Dear Coquette,

I dated a man in my circle of friends for two years. I thought we were in a happy, committed relationship but he cheated. Three years later, he’s still with the woman and she’s become close with some of my girlfriends and is present for happy hour, girls’ night, etc.

She’s a fun, life-of-the-party kind of girl so I see why everyone enjoys her company. But I really don’t like being around her. Whenever she talks about him, she makes some sort of apology to me, like, “Oh, my boyfriend said the funniest thing … Oh, sorry, honey.” I hate it. It’s like she’s constantly trying to say that I got kicked to curb so he could trade up.

I try to be friendly with her, and I don’t let how I really feel about her show. I don’t talk sh** behind her back (except to my sister) but I feel so fake for hanging out with a woman I can’t stand. I don’t want the guy back, and I’m happier now than when I was with him. I just don’t like the bitch.

It’s been three years and I want to move on. I hate this negativity. I just don’t know what to do to shake it. I want to avoid her, but I’m afraid that if I do that, or if I let people know that I don’t like being around her, it will seem petty. It seems petty to me as I type it. And maybe it is. That’s why I need you.

You always seem to have such insight into people’s emotions. I guess I need someone who is outside of it to give me some advice. What should I do, Coquette? Do I avoid her, get her out of my life? Or do I just continue to brush off her comments?

Don’t make this about her. This is about you. You’ve been holding onto this negativity for three years because you think she’s the one you can’t stand, but the brutal truth is that you hate yourself, and you’re just projecting your own self-loathing onto an easy target.

Not that she doesn’t deserve to be a target, because she sounds like a treacherous, condescending bitch. Go ahead, say it out loud: She is a treacherous, condescending bitch. Scream it if you want, because it’s the damn truth, and you’ve been too much of a pathetic little doormat to let the world know how you feel.

Let it out, girl. Quit worrying what other people might think is petty. All you’re doing is invalidating your own emotions, and that’s the underlying reason you’re filled with so much self-loathing in the first place. Openly acknowledge that you can’t stand being in the same room as that duplicitous ho-bag, and don’t make any apologies for feeling that way. Once you do that, I promise you won’t feel fake for hanging out with her.

In fact, you probably won’t mind so much, because you’ll stop feeling the need to be friendly with her. After all, she isn’t your friend. She is and always has been the enemy, and up until now, you haven’t been a worthy adversary. Of course you should still maintain decorum, but being polite isn’t the same thing as being friendly. (Do you think she’s being friendly when she says, “Sorry, honey?” Hell no. She’s just being cordial while rubbing your nose in the fact that she stole your man.)

Ultimately, it doesn’t matter whether you avoid this woman, cut her our of your life or continue brushing her off. She is of no consequence. What’s important is that you give yourself permission to feel your emotions, stop being a doormat, and eventually forgive yourself for putting up with this kind of crap for three long years.


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