• Fri, Jan 17 - 1:57 pm ET

An Open Letter To My Ex Who Just Called Me A Slut

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Photo: Shutterstock

To the boy I once loved,

I remember the moment I first met you. When I called my mother I referred to you as the gorgeous cowboy with green eyes who winked at me when I laughed. We spent Monday’s falling in love, faster than the spring snow could melt and made plans to travel the world together. You would roll down the window to smoke a cigarette, or two, and I would sip my diet coke through a straw; we accepted each others vices while simultaneously discussing politics, literature, the future.

We grew apart silently, slowly; an aimless process that prolonged like an Indian summer. Maybe, we were just too stubborn to admit that our dreams had altered, or perhaps we were afraid. The truth is I don’t know you anymore. And I’m okay with that.

Recently, I composed a list titled, “10 Things I Must Do Before Opting To Get Knocked Up“ and I’m not sorry it doesn’t include you. I won’t apologize for envisioning a future without your last name as an anchor, or for hoping to establish a career and rock-hard abs. I’m not remorseful that I aim to complete travel goals without you, or that I won’t need dual custody to own my first dog; for saying “I,” and “me,” not “we.” I especially won’t retract or make amends for number six: ”Sex. Have lots of it.”

But, you should. In reference to your recent accusations that I’m “sleeping around with everyone in NYC,” I am not a slut.

How dare you? I am not a slut. And although I owe you no justification or explanation, to clarify: I am not sleeping with every man in New York City. Because let’s be honest, who actually has the time/energy for that?

To the same boy who cheated on me with an “old friend,” I refrained from expressing to you the words I should have said, the ones that echoed in my brain at three am. The words that resurfaced whenever I closed my eyes, or went running, or glared at my suitcases in the laundry room; the poetic refrain of her name that lingered every time we seemed happy, because I still loved you, anyway.

I am not a slut.

Ideally, you would apologize. Atone for slut-shaming me, for making hyperbolic assumptions that no longer involve you, for effectively ending a three-year friendship. Did you want to become a cliche? Just another hot-tempered ex who succumbed to using offensive terms like “slut” and “whore” to insult women. A woman you once picked out baby names with when imagining the future; whose phone you’ve now deluged with shameful text messages over a mutual breakup that occurred eight months ago.

You are right about one thing, though: the ‘Big Apple’ has changed me. And I am very sorry that you don’t recognize what’s different. That liberating sound? Yeah, it’s called my voice.

Mondays no longer belong to us, cowboy; they belong to the 33 blocks my feet graze on my walk to work; they belong to the first person I smile at in the morning: the coffee barista; they belong to the steam from the subway grates that momentarily make me feel warm and filthy. They belong to New York City.

They belong to me.

Best of luck to you and your new girlfriend.
Love,
The slut, the girl you once called Lu.

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  • CMJ

    Beep. Beep. Back up the truck….he cheated on you and you’re a slut for writing about wanting to have sex?
    http://25.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_m4wq14toy91rqfhi2o1_400.gif

    • Lindsey Conklin

      HAHAHA you made my day

    • Bunny Lucia

      Oh that’s not terribly unusual. I dated a guy for two years, he cheated on me more times than I care to count, I finally wised up and broke up with him. It took me months to move on but once I did he called me a slut and had the audacity to try to make it seem like a mutual friend of ours was the one calling me a slut.

  • Amanda Lee

    Bravo, Lindsey! That was beautifully written.

    • Lindsey Conklin

      thank you :)

  • B

    Beautifully written Lindsey!!! You are so talented

  • Joanna Rafael

    THANK YOU for writing this. Thank you times a million.

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  • Samantha Escobar

    You’re wonderful and, not that you need to hear it again, he fucking sucks.

  • Krusticle

    Ah, so the guy is butt-hurt that you were able to move on from his magnificence. So sad for him.

  • Laura Bennett

    Such an ass! You deserve the best my dear and he…well he has a whole life of missery coming to him!

  • guestb

    Men are funny creatures. Breaking up with them is not that easy. And I’m reminded of this line that I love from GA, sorry if it’s silly but it rings true…I find men love to judge after a break-up. Turns out, in my experience, they are less adept at handling break-ups than we are. Even if they are the ones who behaved badly. They verbally attack where it hurts because they don’t get their own way – cake and eat it too. When someone hurts another person, you should never judge how they decide to heal. I know you’re not a slut, obviously, but even if you were. Why is that any of his business. MEREDITH: “You don’t get to call me a whore. When I met you, I thought I had found the person that I was going to spend the rest of my life with. I was done! All the boys and all the bars and all the obvious daddy issues, who cares? I was done. You left me. You chose Addison. I’m all glued back together now. I make no apologies for how I chose to repair what you broke. You don’t get to call me a whore.”

  • kj

    I would have liked this more if it had been less about “I am not a slut.” How about, “it’s none of your goddamn business what I do with my body?”

    It just rings false to decry “slut shaming,” while in the next breath protesting the use of the word. Like, sluts are ok, but I AM NOT A SLUT.

    I mean, his comment is insulting because he’s clearly a hypocritical dumbass and your feelings are perfectly legitimate… but IMHO it should be about criticizing his choice of words/hypocritical dumbassness, not defending yourself against his accusation.

    When you assert so strongly that you are not a slut, it’s reinforcing the legitimacy of that word as an insult, which I do not agree with. So what if I’m a big, big, slut and I have indeed slept with the entire State of New York? It’s none of your business and go to hell.