Ashley Finley


What To Do When You Get a Call From Your Boyfriend's Fiancée

 

1. Remain calm.
Though every fiber of your being wants to drop the phone, drive to his house and reenact that famous scene from "Waiting To Exhale"... You know, the one where a badass and furious Angela Bassett sets all her man's shit on fire in the middle of the driveway, resist.

Instead, take a deep breath.
Try to steady your racing thoughts. 
Be prepared to hear some stuff that will be hard to hear. 

2. When she tells you she is 4 months pregnant with his child:
Try not to act shocked.
You already prepared for the worst, remember? 

You have been prepared for the moment since you were 8 years old, sitting on the kitchen floor while Mama had this same conversation with your father's lover. 

3. Put yourself in Mama's shoes.
This will help you empathize with the fiancé 
(Whose name happens to be the same as yours.) 

Remember what Mama told you:
"Baby, when you are older, you may like a man. He may like you too, call you pretty names, kiss you sweetly, treat you like a queen. But remember, it's possible that when your back is turned, he may call another girl pretty names, kiss her sweetly, treat her like a queen. When you find out, try to sympathize with her. Talk to her straight up. Woman to woman. Let her know that you are not her enemy. You two be one in the same. You two be women."

4. Remember that this is not about you, it's about her.
Or...maybe it's equally about the both of you.
Either way, be humble. 
Don't let your ego speak for you.
She is just as embarrassed as you are.

Listen to her.
She is being vulnerable.
You be vulnerable too.
This is not the time to withhold feelings.

Be honest.

She will appreciate it. 

5. When she asks you the intimate details of what happened, tell her what she wants to know. 

She deserves that much. 

After all,
You are the other woman, whether or not you were aware of the fact. 

She's starting to let it all settle in now. 
She's realizing that this is actually happening.
This is not a bad dream. 

You're becoming aware of this as well. 

6. Tell her you have never been in this situation before.
She'll tell you the same. 

Tell her you're so sorry.
Tell her you had no idea.
Tell her...
She doesn't deserve this.
And she'll tell you the same. 

7. Be silent for a while.

Take a deep breath.

Steady your racing thoughts.

Acknowledge your vulnerability at this moment.

Acknowledge your vulnerability.

Feel like shattered glass.

Feel stupid.

Then get it together.

8. Know that this is not your fault.

9. Know that this is not her fault.

10. Know that this is not just about her.
This is equally about the both of you. 

You are not her enemy.
You are her sister.

You are both named Ashley.
You two be one in the same.
You two be women. 


Ashley Finley is a California native, living in Salt Lake City, UT. Ashley has always deemed writing poetry as a way to understand her life experiences and as catharsis. She started sharing her work ,while in college, as a performance poet and also as a slam poet. Currently, she uses her passion for writing as a way to incite movement and community involvement in the youth. She holds several monthly writing workshops for children and adolescents, because she wants young people from all walks of life to understand that their story matters.