Dear Almost Lover,


This is a little awkward, because we are still friends, and I know you are subscribed to this blog. I'm sure you know exactly who you are, and what I will try to vaguely talk about, but I want you to know: no hard feelings. If you feel like this isn't something you would want to read, please exit out of this post.

--

We really were just almost lovers. Maybe it was our naivete at the time, and we fancied ourselves like a modern-day Romeo and Juliet. I did, anyways. The more I knew your family disliked me, the more I felt like must have been meant to be. For the longest time, even after we went our separate ways, I re-read all of our saved conversations, looking for any sign to prove otherwise. At the time, I really couldn't find anything. We met, became close friends, fell in love, kept it a secret from each other because Asian people are shy, and needed a million and one people to push us together. Heck, even our teachers shipped us at one point (I'm pretty sure they conspired that year to make us sit next to each other in every class). It seemed so perfect. For the longest time, I kept wondering about what could have been, and I fell into the trap of feeling like you should have been the one. I was so devastated and obsessed with getting you back; I fell into depression over the fact that for the first time in 6 years, we didn't have a single class together. I wanted an explanation, an apology, and I simply wanted you to want me back. I had panic attack after panic attack, being unable to set down this desire to control what was happening. I was miserable, but that was never your fault. That was me being a control freak, and freaking out when I lost control. Now that I'm older and a teensy bit wiser, I know better. We weren't perfect for each other. Maybe it was just in that moment we were incompatible -- if we had met years after, would we have made it? I don't know, but it honestly doesn't matter anymore. You should have been a red flag to begin with. Not because you were horrible or anything like that. You were great. You still are great. Romeo and Juliet just aren't great role models, and I probably shouldn't have run with the mindset that we would be a perfect couple and overcome your family's disapproval like we're in an Asian drama. That's not really how love works in reality.

The bottom line is that I shouldn't have let us go against your parents' wishes. I should have been more active in proving them wrong, rather than let you listen to their complaints about me, and push you to go against their word. I was doing a rotten job at being a supportive friend, much less girlfriend. I was asking you to choose between them and me, and that should have never been something I put you through. And in the end, when you chose your family, I should have understood, instead of blame you for my heartbreak, because I chose to go into the relationship knowing full well the conditions, terms, and risks of getting caught. Growing up in a conservative household where my mother preached that Cinderella is the way to go -- you will find your prince if you work hard and are abused. I did work hard, and I was so headstrong and unafraid of the consequences, because in my mind, I was working towards a day where you could officially be my prince. Obviously not really how it works, and I think we're both in a better situation.

Parental approval is so important to me now. I've been afraid to even let myself admit to liking someone until I have approval from his parents. I thought for a moment that I could grow out of this ridiculous notion, but again, the importance of family approval really hit me hard in my last relationship. I should have learned it well enough the first time with you. While what happened left me with a bit of a bitter aftertaste, I don't regret it for one moment. I still consider you my first love, and the times we shared will always stay with me. I will always treasure those late night talks about everything and nothing, the way you would make me laugh even when the situation was dire, how we would study and figure out school together, and the month of volunteering at daycare together. I'm taking these sweet memories and the lessons learned, but the hurt ends here. I'm glad that we can still be friends, and we aren't completely estranged from one another. Even though our romantic relationship didn't work out, I'm so thankful for your friendship, and I will forever be grateful that you told me to try praying, and pushed me to begin my relationship with Christ. You're truly a one of a kind person, and I know that the person you are with is so, so blessed.