Life, the Universe and Everything: Regrets

I know that you shouldn’t regret anything in life. We all make mistakes from time to time, but then we learn from them which is how we grow emotionally. If that one awful thing hadn’t happened, it wouldn’t have led to those other much better things. If it hadn’t been for some of those decisions and actions I regret, I wouldn’t have become the person I am today.

However, sometimes there’s a nagging feeling that, in a particular situation, it would have genuinely been better to do things differently. It’s the times when my actions have affected others and I could have, should have, done or said things differently to avoid hurt. Those times when I realise now that I was completely focused on my own feelings, and not those of others. These are regrets that I freely admit to.

I’d like to apologise to the girlfriend I stopped loving for not fully appreciating how she must have then felt when I fell for a mutual friend. The end of our relationship was difficult, but I was as honest as I could be and think that was handled as well as I could have at the time. However, when I moved on, I was extremely inconsiderate of her feelings and I should have handled it very differently indeed. I’m so sorry sweetie.

Image via César Astudillo's Flickr photostreamI regret the way I acted around a guy I was seeing casually, who I became completely over invested in and ended up arguing with over email. I didn’t see how ridiculously I was behaving – emotion had completely and utterly clouded my judgement and I was not, as I thought, being calm detached and casual about the whole thing. You were right and I was so very wrong. I’m sorry for behaving like a twat.

I’d also like to say sorry to the lovely people who I’ve been on dates with in recent years but, even though things went well, I didn’t feel able to say to them afterwards “although I’m poly and we get on really well, I just don’t think I’m in the headspace for another relationship right now.” Instead of speaking the truth and risking the awful cliche of “it’s not you, it’s me” tumbling out of my mouth, I simply dropped off the radar as I was too scared to have that conversation. It’s an immature thing to do and I regret every time I’ve done it.

I’m still Facebook friends with the people mentioned above, so perhaps they’ll read this and recognise themselves. Understand that, yes, what I did was awful and I know it. Maybe one day I’ll pluck up the courage to apologise directly to them. Until then, not having apologised properly will just have to go on my list of regrets.

Image via Koppenbadger and César Astudillo‘s Flickr photostreams.

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