Sunday, March 22, 2009

The Reason, The Conclusion

When we started 12th grade, Chanel and B.J. had been dating for four years. As crazy as it sounds, they had been a couple since 8th grade. I was often the third wheel or along as a double date (I had girlfriends throughout high school and college).

I realized in 12th grade that I loved B.J. in an inappropriate way and that I was making myself miserable by pining over him. He was spending more and more time with Chanel, leaving me alone and jealous. And that’s when I meet Michael ( As Michael and I started spending time together, I noticed B.J. was the one getting jealous. He did not understand why I was spending so much time with a freshman.

We drifted apart. We graduated. Before we all left for college, a group of us got together and went out. There, at our last time together before going our separate ways, B.J. punched me in the face and gave me a black-eye. He had been picking a fight with me the entire outing and it ended with me punched in the face. I did not hit him back. I remember sitting in our friend’s Sasha’s car, holding my eye, looking out of the window, crying tears that hurt my face and my heart. I promised myself that I would never speak to him again.

And I kept my promise. I started college with a black eye that lasted weeks. I was embarrassed and hurt.

B.J. and Chanel went to college at one of our state’s HBCU’s and I went to our state’s biggest university. We rarely ever saw each other. He never came home (he and his aunt also had some problems) and when he did, I avoided him.

When B.J. was a sophomore in college, he had a mental breakdown. He was actually diagnosed as being bi-polar. I was sad for him. I was hurt when I found out, but in some ways, it made sense considering his behavior during our junior and senior year of high school.

He was institutionalized for six months and during this time, he wrote me several letters. He apologized and asked me to be in his life, to be his friend again. He told me that I had helped his faith and that God had placed us in each other’s lives for life. I did not respond to his letter. I ignored him.

This is hard to admit and this is hard to write.

Chanel asked me to forgive him, to visit him. I told her I would. She and I had remained friends, but I did not keep my word to her. My promise to myself meant more to me then.

B.J. was released and returned to school. He had several other episodes and did not finish college. He did finish barber school. He married Chanel and they have two beautiful children.

And this takes us to the reason for the entries. B.J. and Chanel’s divorce became final on Friday and B.J. called my mother to tell her about the divorce. He cheated and has two other children. They talked about everything and in the course of their conversation he told her why he hit me. He had heard that I was gay and was dating Michael. He told her that the thought of me being gay all those years had made him really mad.

Why he was telling my mother this is beyond me and really made us both angry. My mother knows I am gay and she supports me and my relationship with Parker. We both wonder who else he has told this too. Michael is married now with kids of his own, after all.

I thought about what could motivate him to call my mother and tell her this and I think it is because he needs a friend now. I am sure losing Chanel is hard for him. And I want so badly to make amends for not being there for him years ago when he asked for my forgiveness but I know I will never call him or speak to him. And while it might be the right thing to do, it is not the thing I am going to do and I have to live with this (the fact that I am this kind of person) for the rest of my life.


Dusty Boot said...

Wow (yes, what a surprising ending). It is rather amusing that he chose to call your mother. Hrmm..... hmmmm.... give him a chance? I dunno. I gave a buddy of mine another chance, but he cut me again, so then I said fuck it, for good. On the other hand, it could be disruptive to your world to have him back in your life. What's Parker's opinion of all of this, after all he's your other half these days. And speaking of Parker, hope y'all are doing well!

4GOTTEN1 said...

I think he called your mother of all people because when he was younger and no one liked him your mother saw potential in him and sort of befriended him. Also he was pretty sure your mother would relay everything he said back to you. I know you don't want to but maybe you should talk to him for closure if nothing else. It's been years and you are such different people now not sure you could be friends. Yo and honestly sometimes people just need a second chance. We all fuck up in real bad ways sometime.

Q said...

I agree with 4GOTTEN1. If anything call him for closure. If not for you, for

Crazy Diamond said...

I don't think there's a right or wrong answer, or that how you respond makes you "that kind of person." He violated you in a very intense way, and you are well within your right to say he is no longer allowed to be apart of your life.

But I think he told your mother because he cherished your friendship as much as you did, and explaining to her why he acted the way that he did was part of his growing process. Him coming to terms with you being gay was likely to traumatic to him: all those times you all were close and intimate, all the times he felt so good being your presence — does that make him gay? For a young straight man to be confronted with those questions can be really intimidating.

That in no way excuses the violence that he directed toward you, but maybe there's a chance he's worked through those feelings and is yearning to have a bond with you similar to the one you all had as kids. I doubt you all will ever recapture that closeness, but it's up to you whether you want to have anything to do with him at all.

Great series :)

Anonymous said...

Well I believe you will never forgive him until you talk to him. I believe this may bring some type of closure for the both of you. He may not even want a friendship but to just know that he was forgiven. A letter will do, you dont have to make a phone call, but just know that sometimes your words to a person that is ailing could prevent him from doing other things that may cause harm to himself or others...if not for that then do it because the Bible tells you so............mean arse

Losojosnuevos said...

Could I forgive someone who punched me in the face without provocation? Probably not. The friendship you two had is gone. I think it's important to differentiate between forgiveness and reconciliation. Forgiveness is for you, Corey. It's a waste of time to travel though life with bitterness and resentment in your heart, as you only harm yourself.

He's got his own issues to deal with. If the event was as traumatic as you described, it might be a good idea to leave the situation alone. He's definitely in need of support. Maybe a periodic chat with your mama is all he needs. Thanks for sharing.

deonte' k said...

This is a hard one, but you have to do what ever it is that u feel. And if that's not calling or talking to him then so be it. I think ur soo much stronger than me, because I'm normally quick to forgive folks, then in the end still end up in the same situation. So I totally understand, and respect ur decision.

ThisMightBeMe said...

what an interesting twist to the story? at the end of the day, you've got to do what's best for you.

LongOverdo said...

sad ending...almost unbearable

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