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I thought we had something special…until my girlfriend vanished

How I was dumped is a new Yahoo UK column in which anonymous writers share the shocking and heart-wrenching ways their relationship ended.

John*, then 23, was loving his whirlwind romance until suddenly his girlfriend vanished...

Our writer had been seeing his girlfriend most days, until she disappeared without warning. (Yahoo Life UK)
Our writer had been seeing his girlfriend most days, until she disappeared without warning. (Yahoo Life UK)

When you’ve been dumped more times than you care to remember, you begin to develop a sixth sense for when the axe is about to fall yet again – the unanswered calls, the flimsy excuses to get out of a date, the restraining orders. That’s why Eva* was such a mystery.

I first met her in Soho when I was 23. My flatmate Ben* and his friend Emma* persuaded me to go for a drink which is where Emma’s friend Eva was waiting for them. Looking back, it’s pretty clear that they were setting us up but I didn’t care, especially as I’d been single for a year and forever getting under Ben’s feet. Eva was funny, down-to-earth and liked the same music as me. She had only been in London for six months and, luckily for me, she was single too.

Things moved quickly. Soon, we would see each other most days. She would come to my flat in Tooting, South London, or I’d go up to hers in Wood Green. We would travel to work together and then meet up afterwards too. And while she hated her job, she said that being with me made her happy.

We had been seeing each other for about three months when, out of the blue, Eva just vanished. One minute we seemed to be getting on great, the next she had just gone.

It didn’t make sense. I spent a weekend calling her mobile but it must have been turned off. I used up all the space on her landline answer machine too.

Knocking on her door

It didn’t make sense. I spent a weekend calling her mobile but it must have been turned off. I used up all the space on her landline answer machine too. I sent her emails and texts, but all of them remained unopened and unanswered. I even spoke to Emma but she had no idea where she had gone either.

At least that’s what she said.

I decided to make the hour’s journey to her flat in Wood Green just to see if she was there. I knocked at the front door but there was no answer. I looked through the letter box and there was already a pile of mail building up in the hallway.

I waited around for a bit, sitting in the local pub for a couple of hours and trying her phone every few minutes, hoping she might pick up. But still, there was no sign of her.

Mysteriously, his new girlfriend vanished, despite multiple calls to her mobile. Posed by model. (Getty Images/Yahoo Life UK)
Mysteriously, his new girlfriend vanished, despite multiple calls to her mobile. Posed by model. (Getty Images/Yahoo Life UK)

A fateful phonecall

When I got back home, I even started looking up how to report a missing person, right up to the point until my phone rang and up flashed Eva’s number. I wasn’t going to answer it, but curiosity got the better of me.

"Hello, it’s Eva…"

She tried a bit of small talk but, not surprisingly, I wasn’t in the mood for it, so I interrupted her.

"Where the hell have you been?"

"In Devon. I’ve moved back home. I just didn’t like London. And you know how much I hated my job…"

In other words, it’s not you, it’s me.

And I was just collateral damage. It transpired that Eva wasn’t quite the one that got away, as the one who moved over 200 miles away, just so she didn’t have to be with me.

She started crying but when I suggested visiting her, her tone changed markedly. 'No, don’t come down. Please don’t.'

Another punch in the gut

So I asked when she had decided to leave and then why she thought it was OK to go without even saying a word. "My tenancy was up at the flat and it just seemed like the right time," she said. "I didn’t want to stay a moment longer than I had to."

She started crying but when I suggested visiting her, her tone changed markedly. "No, don’t come down. Please don’t."

"Why not?"

"Just don’t, OK?"

There was a long, awkward pause. Then another bombshell. She was back with her old boyfriend from home too. So that explained the silence and the secrecy. In fact, that pretty much explained everything.

The call ended moments later. She did send me a text saying sorry (with a ‘x’) but I never replied. Then, a day later, she sent another apologising again. I didn’t reply.

Fast forward a couple of decades and I’m happily married with three kids, two dogs and a cat who doesn’t much like me. When I was younger, I used to beat myself up endlessly about why girlfriends like Eva came and went but now I can look back at these old relationships not just with embarrassment but fondness too.

It’s mainly embarrassment though.

*Names have been changed for privacy reasons.

Read more: All of Yahoo UK's How I was dumped stories.