New Friendships and Bad Relationships
I’d started hanging around with a group of people who were in the year above me at school. Some of them lived down the same road as me so I knew them quite well anyway as we walked to school together. Rhoda Draper, Kirsty Marshall and Matt Campbell were different to the ones I was used to being around. I wasn’t with that group for long in my school days as it was very close to the end of my school life but I carried on being friends with Rhoda and Kirsty outside. It was then, when I was 15, I was introduced to the “Boys From Sevenoaks.” Well, I say boys… It started off with Phil Hambidge (then 26) and Jon Young (then 22). Phil was dating Cheryl, Kirsty’s younger sister, and Jon was with Rhoda. Kirsty went mental one day at Cheryl and ended up stabbing her through the hand with a pen after she found out she was seeing her then boyfriend, Rob (also from Sevenoaks), behind her back. Phil split up with Cheryl and found comfort in the arms of Kirsty, while Cheryl was moved to Merstham, away from her sister. Are you still with me? Phil then found out Kirsty was cheating on him with Rob and split up from her. We started seeing each other for about a week but he was still on the rebound from Kirsty so we agreed to just be friends. Phew! Right, for two and a half years Rhoda and Jon were in a steady relationship. Phil was off seeing someone else called Claire by this stage so we were introduced to another “Boy From Sevenoaks” by the name of Andy Nicholson (then 24). What I didn’t know was that Jon and Rhoda had been trying to set me up with him. I met him for the first time one night back in 1999 and he seemed like an okay kind of guy. We hit it off straight away and for the first time I felt comfortable talking to a guy who could potentially be more than a friend. A few nights later they were back again. I’d just got back from visiting my Dad and popped in to let my Mum know I was home, before heading straight back out again. Andy threw his arms around me the instant I got up there. I thought this a little strange at first considering I only met him the once a few days earlier but I went with the flow none the less. He told me he hadn’t stopped thinking about me since the other night and couldn’t wait to get back down there again to see me. We spent most of the evening hugging and chatting, at this stage we were no more than friends and barely knew each other. It was getting late and I said I should get going; he stopped me and said he’d been trying to ask me out all evening but couldn’t find the right words to say it. We had been seeing each for around two weeks and were over Jon’s parents’ house when things went drastically wrong. Rhoda and Jon had a massive argument over something and she stormed out the house, Andy went after her and they didn’t return for at least half an hour. I had my suspicions that something happened between them but couldn’t prove it, as on the way home you could cut the atmosphere with a knife. Anyway the following day he made the excuse that he couldn’t come down and Rhoda made up a bullshit story she had a headache, therefore didn’t want to go shopping. I spent the day round my Aunt Franky’s instead, who lived next door to the Drapers. As I was leaving I heard a couple of people talking on the doorstep, at first I thought it was her sister Carey and Phil, who she was now going out with (he got around a bit). They disappeared quickly though as I went past to go home, so I decided to stand on my doorstep just to put my mind at ease. It didn’t however as my suspicions were proved right when I saw Andy go running up the steps, back up to his car. I went back indoors and broke down in tears. And for the first time, my Mum was comforting towards me and consoled me, trying to help me through it. I had never experienced that before. She had never showed any kind of love like that and although it helped a little, it didn’t stop me from taking things out on myself when I got back upstairs to my room. It was at that point I was angry. I went past being upset. I had been cheated on. For the first time I had been in a relationship, or something that felt like that at the time, I wanted to hurt someone. And the person in the firing line was me. I looked around the room to see what I could find to use to hurt myself with. Forgetting I tried to hide most of my sharp objects like scissors and compasses, I resorted to snapping a plastic ruler in half and using the sharp edge of that. Ah, that felt good. As I felt my skin tear and saw the blood start to flow from the cuts I had made, I knew I had accomplished what I wanted to do and it made me feel a lot better. I forgot all about the reasons that made me feel like that in the first place. A few weeks went past and I didn’t see or hear from either of them. He didn’t even find the common courtesy to say it was over and that he was seeing her now. They just avoided me. Every time I went to Rhoda’s house I would be told that she was either out or too unwell to come to the door. I knew differently though. I was past caring about it by that stage; I think I was probably just more pissed off that neither of them would admit it. One day though the shit really hit the fan when I was accused of vandalising his car. Someone had poured a bottle of nail polish over the bonnet which acted like paint stripper, not only that but they had done a number on the paintwork of the passenger side door. As much as I tried to plead my innocence he told me I was seen by some people that said I did it. I denied it of course, the fact is I don’t even wear nail polish therefore have no use for nail polish remover, plus I wasn’t petty enough to take my anger out on his precious car. You’ll probably find it was Jon, after all you did steal his girlfriend of two and a half years, and he therefore had a bigger grudge than I ever would have done. I only take solace that I didn’t sleep with you like you tried to do that night. I just wonder why I ever went with you in the first place. I certainly know how to pick them really; you were the first in a line of losers. You were someone who had previously been arrested for underage sex and when her parents found out what she was doing, she decided to cry rape. Fair enough that may or may not have been true. There are only two people that know the truth there, either way it doesn’t make you any less of a bad egg for me. A few months later Jon and I started getting a little closer. Perhaps he was on the rebound or looking for revenge against his former love. I wasn’t looking for anything but agreed to start seeing him on a little more-friendlier basis. It only lasted a few months before I decided to call it off because he was getting too much for me. He would constantly be texting me or checking up on me to see where I was or who I was with. I felt like I wasn’t allowed to go out with my friends or anything like that. I couldn’t face him when I ended things so I decided to do it by letter, a Dear John to Jon, how ironic. I felt really guilty afterwards though and instantly went round his sister’s house where he was housesitting to try and explain myself. We agreed to still be friends which was fine for a while until a few years later he sent me a text message out of the blue, telling me he still loved me and wanted me back. This was four years later and I hadn’t seen him for about that long either. I told him that I wasn’t interested but he turned up on my doorstep a few days later and started stalking me. Again, I’m glad I never agreed to sleep with him when I was dating him. He invited me to his 30th birthday party, in the hope of some sort of reconciliation. I agreed but said I would be bringing a date with me and hoped he didn’t mind, he was a little disheartened but didn’t say no. I told my mate, Hooky (Dave Hook) all about the situation with him and he agreed to come along and act as my date. We were very convincing, and it helped that Hooky and I had hooked up a few times before after our drunken Reflex night’s outs making it seem that little bit more real. The party was a very cheesy affair; Alcopops and Aqua on the stereo. But the job was done and we made him believe we were an item and he didn’t stand a chance. The stalking stopped and I didn’t hear from him again.