Is Revenge a Bad Thing?
It may feel good to get back at someone who hurt you, but does it really help? Readers share their tales of how they got even with their exes.
-Kathryn H. Cusimano
When you’ve been wronged by an ex, it’s only natural to want to get back at him. Yet revenge is a tricky topic. It may feel good to get back at someone who’s hurt you, but things don’t always go the way you think they will – and is it really the best way to move on and get over the fool who did you wrong? Still, there is something pretty satisfying about feeling as if you’ve settled the score, at least a little bit. Here, a few of our readers tell how they exacted their revenge.
When Tanerah was living in Santa Cruz, CA, and found out that her boyfriend was cheating on her, she took cues from her favorite television show. “I used to be addicted to Sex and the City,” she says. “When I discovered that my then-boyfriend was cheating, and it turned out that I was actually – unknowingly – the ‘other woman,’ I took a lesson from Samantha and plastered signs all over town with his photo and the word ‘cheater’ above it.” While Tanerah may have taken some satisfaction from that action, she admits that not everyone was so pleased. “The other woman blamed me for the situation instead of the guy who’d duped us both,” she says.
When it comes to getting even there’s always a risk that things might not work out the way you’d planned – but if you have to go there, a little creativity can go a long way. Brettan, from San Diego, CA, actually found a way to get revenge on her ex while simultaneously deflecting unwanted male attention. “One of my favorite things to do to my ex is to give guys I meet his phone number and pretend it’s mine. Then he has to hear about it every time a guy calls to ask me out.” This worked fine for Brettan, but her ex got a little fed up. “At one point he finally broke down and emailed me to say that it made him feel bad. Well yeah, but it’s about 1/100th of how bad he made me feel,” she says.
Susan, from Boston, MA, has a revenge story made for the movies. She says things were going swimmingly with her “perfect” boyfriend – and then she got a series of text messages from a woman who said she’d been living with Susan’s boyfriend for six weeks. What was Susan’s response? “Not on my watch.” Susan invited her guy over for champagne and kept her phone nearby. “I called the ‘other woman’ and said, ‘Sit tight. You’ll be getting a call from him within the hour.’ Then he came in, full of tears and remorse.” He told Susan he wanted stay with her, but he didn’t notice that there was only one champagne glass on the table. “I let him know there was only one way that would happen and that was for him to call her in front of me, tell her he never loved her, that he used her and that I was the one he wanted to be with. Easy enough, right?” It seemed so – he grabbed the phone, called the other woman and said all the right things. Then Susan got on the line with the woman. As she explains, “The conversation went a bit like this, ‘You heard from his mouth who he wants to be with, that you were second-best and that he doesn’t want to be with you. So after I kick his pathetic ass out of my house in about 30 seconds and he comes crawling back to you, remember this conversation.’ Then I opened the champagne, poured myself a glass and held it up in a toast to ‘taking out the trash.’ Who says women can’t think clearly when emotions come into play?”