Jilted

Wandra Chenault, MSW MamaSezWisdom

Mama’s Best Advice:Words of Wisdom Digest

Jilted: when you’re on the receiving end of a mean spirited rejection

Misled, taken advantage of, betrayed, humiliated: words that describe the feelings associated with being jilted.

by Wandra Chenault, MSW MamaSezWisdom™  9/15/2021

What is being jilted? One definition reads, “To deceive or drop (a lover) suddenly or callously.” Merriam Webster defines it this way: to cast off or reject (someone, such as a lover) capriciously or unfeelingly. Jilted is essentially when one person in a relationship derails the relationship without warning, explanation or process. And, the  person, the jilted,  is left wondering what happened—without explanation from the other person. The jilted person feels deceived, misled, abandoned, uniformed. It is a romance trauma since how it is carried out gives no opportunity for discussion or recourse.  

When one partner in the relationship  never arrives for the appointment,  which could be a dinner, a wedding  or a walk in the park and is never heard from again, the other partner feels jilted. The opportunity to be heard or to confront is absent. The  feeling one experiences could be likened to the emptiness of a balloon where all the air has escaped or the balloon which accidentally slipped out of a hand and has now  disappeared.  There is no opportunity to confront or be heard, no chance to even say goodbye.

Rejection is an answer. Rejection is clear. It is a firm “no,”  “no thank you,” or “I don’t think so.”  And, almost anyone and everyone has been rejected in some kind of way. It’s not a good feeling but it’s a normal part of life.  Most of  us get over rejection and some of us eventually see it as a blessing, ending up in a superior situation: a better job, school or relationship.  But,  what about being jilted? Jilted is and feels different. For the person who is jilted, it can be a feeding frenzy for negative emotions, sadness, anger, resentment and possibly wanting retribution.  

The person doing the jilting may consider it harmless or the facts of life–but to the person who is jilted, that is not true, instead it feels as if there was some bit of intentionality, maybe even left feeling that the relationship was a charade, a game. And because the person has walked away from the relationship without an explanation, it could feel quite cold and calculated or indifferent at the least.

The jilted is somehow still waiting, at the restaurant, at home, at an appointment or at the altar while the person who jilts  walks away  but, she or he has not the courage or capacity of emotional commitment to be honest.  Essentially showing a lack  of real  care or concern. Yes, possibly the person who’s jilts may be struggling  with addressing their own needs  and  leaving the other person as  a casualty in  war. However, in war you come back for your partner wherever possible. The cruelest is when the person who jilts the other knew that there was no commitment but went on playing the game for their own advantage.

Although the person who abandons the other party may try to paint jilting as harmless, it is not harmless and, it’s far from a simple rejection. The  person doing the jilting has someone involved, hanging on a string: even if its a long string. Then,  at their discretion,  the string is ripped, broken, unknotted or untied  and someone, the other party is left to fall. How  hard and how steep is the fall?  It depends on the extent of the relationship.

For whom some may consider the victim, it can be quite difficult to deal with the feeling of being jilted. Some have said being jilted feels like  somehow they’ve been misled,  encouraged or invited and subsequently denied with disregard or with callousness. A movie that may demonstrate an understanding of the emotions of the jilted  would  be Carrie, a story of  a shy girl outcast by her peers who uses her telekinetic powers with devastating effects, after falling victim to a cruel prank at her senior prom.

Why is it a mean spirited rejection? Like Russian Roulette, it  can be dangerous and  tragic.  Dr  Fredrick Neuman writes in Psychology Today  (6/5/3013 ) about the story of a young woman  he saw in his practice who threatened to commit suicide because of the humiliation she experienced as a result of being jilted. 

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