I have been divorced for 10 years. I have recovered from the abuse I endured and ready to start a new relationship. I started looking for a new partner from among my previous boyfriends instead of seeking new horizons. I bumped into a childhood boyfriend who was crazy about me. He was unattached and so was I. We met briefly in the airport on a trip back home in Tobago. We exchanged numbers and started a flurry of email and phone calls for about a year before I summoned the courage to tell him I would like to visit him in New York. He made a lot of excuses which appeared plausible because he said his job involved a lot of travel. Anyway, we agreed on a date and I was so excited to see him and get reacquainted for real because I was conjuring up all kinds of romantic ideals about him based on my knowledge of him. I could hardly contain my runaway imagination. To my horror, when I arrived at his place I saw a man who was obviously a mentally ill person. The place was upside down, the sink was high with dirty dishes and he was dishevelled and smelly. I ran out of the house and he did not even try to stop me and got the first plane back to Toronto. I do not know how I could have missed all the signs in the emails and phone calls. There were signs of disconnect but I chose not see them because I wanted a relationship so badly. I would like to warn other women and mento tread cautiously with people and to try and read between the lines of conversations and emails for inconsistencies. There are always signs to be seen but which we choose to ignore at our own peril. I feel badly about running out the apartment the way I did. I feel I should have shown more compassion but I could not because he was not my prince chrming, you see.
It happens to the best of us. We see and turn away in the hope that the bad scene will all disappear. People change sometimes for the better and sometimes for the worse. As we get older we collect illnesses as well other disabilities, most of which are no fault of our own. Your boyfriend is not responsible for your imagination. Perhaps he stopped taking his medication a week before you arrived so as to be fully himself and gave his mental illness the opportunity to flourish. Imagination is great but must be tempered with a dose of reality. Perhaps he should have been honest with you and tell you that he suffers from a mental illness but we all know that taboo. Once he had told you you probably would have gone running in the other direction just as you did. Thanks for sharing your story. I hope others learn from it and I hope you find the man – forget about prince charming – that suits you.