The last time I had seen Labi was in my flat”, recalled Fade. “We’d been going out for close to a year, and he was as loving as ever”. But I’d fallen out of love with him. He was hinting at us living together and I realized I didn’t want to live the rest of my life wit him. He was sad when told him this. At first he tried to make me change my mind but when he saw I was adamant, he turned nasty. He was abusive and left assuring me I would regret my decision. A few months later I was at a friend’s party alone and having a good time when Labi walked in with a girlfriend. After the initial shock, he said hello. He then looked me up and down and smirked, `Hmm, looks like you’ve put on a bit of weight…” The girl sticking to his side was tall, slim and well-turned out! I was dumbstruck by his hostility and just stood there with my mouth hanging open. Afterwards, I thought of all these witty replies I should have given … But what good were they after the event?”
We all must have experienced Fade’s dilemma one time or the other. You’re sure you’re over your lover. You’ve got a new love now – a new life and you’re having fun. So, why is bumping into an ex again such mind shuddering thought? “It is because you know that’ll be exactly when you switch from being your usual outgoing, gorgeous self into an insecure, gibbering stranger”, said Fade. “Something like what happened to me happened to another friend a few weeks later. She has always been known to be a bad-mouth. No insult passes her by without her giving as much as she got – if not more.
She was on the dance floor at a ‘sowambe’ party when she was rudely jostled. She turned around and gave the person a mouthful before she realised it was her ex. She was mortified. According to her: “It is that initial cringe that’s the worst. That tiny second when you clap eyes on each other and realise you’re going to be civil by having some sort of conversation. The shame is that, despite all the intimate things you’ve been through together and have done to each other, you can’t think of a single thing to say …” Rita, a well-publicised socialite, walked into a formal dinner once and, according to her, “I didn’t have just one or even two boyfriends to face.
“When I looked around the gathering, the grand total of men I had slept with at one time or the other were about four! Everywhere I looked, I could see someone I’d slept with. It was horrible! I held my head high of course as all four of them weren’t aware of each other’s existence. Luckily, I was on the high table and that was the face-saver. As soon as I decently could, I sneaked off!’ Things you do in the throes of passion have ways of hunting you at times! Instead of moping, how do you cope when you come face to face with your ex? Tips picked up over the years advise you try to find out if your ex is going to be at the same event as you in advance. Forewarned is forearmed. Remember to be subtle about this, asking about him will only give friends the impression you’re still hung up on him.
Don’t threaten your friends with a no-show if he is going to the same party. Just make sure you look gorgeous. Go the whole hog and treat yourself to a good hair-do, a manicure and hot new outfit; you are worth it and it’ll boost your confidence. Act like an adult, acknowledge your ex and attempt to be pleasant. If you can’t do that, then just steer clear. Making an effort does not mean trying too hard, and if you were he one who was dumped, it is up to him to make the first moves.
Don’t try to make yourself feel better by mocking his new pot-belly, bald patch, or girlfriend. Just give him a look which lets him know you are not impressed by what you see. Walk away if he’s rude or upsetting, and leave if things get really bad. Try to make a slow exit over a drink or two. It is important not to let him know that he’s getting to you. It may be unpleasant but it has to be done – like going to the dentist. Don’t make a scene or ‘get too drunk’. If he dumped you, flirt with the tallest, most handsome man in the room. Of course, it could be a chore, but a girl’s gotta do what a girl’\s gotta do! Be polite say, “It’s been nice seeing you, I’m glad you’re ok”, not “So long sucker, giving you the elbow was the best thing I ever did!”.