The ‘Peaky Blinders’ Guide to Dealing With a Crazy Ex
Anyone who’s caught up on the period gangster drama Peaky Blinders knows that its protagonist, Tommy Shelby, is having a rough time. (Warning: spoilers ahead!) He lost his wife a couple of seasons ago and he’s starting to become a little unhinged. The fifth season of the show recently aired on BBC and is set to be bingeable on Netflix this month. One of the ongoing themes this season is Shelby’s deteriorating mental health; this is manifested in his increased paranoia, lack of sleep, and reoccurring visions of his dead wife, Grace (who’s a horrible adviser). While we can’t relate to seeing dead loved ones everywhere, we can relate to seeing exes everywhere…especially the crazy ones who won’t leave us alone. With that in mind, here’s the Peaky Blinders guide to dealing with a crazy ex—from relationship to breakup.
Cover Photo: British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC)
Everything will seem great at first.
They'll appear to be "the one." You'll be excited about a potential future with this person as you tiptoe through tulips and whistle your way to work (basically you'll be on such a dopamine high you'll miss any and all warning signs).
Things will start to take a turn.
They'll start to show up uninvited, lie (compulsively), steal, read into everything you do and say, guilt trip you, and run around the house half-naked challenging you to a game of Russian roulette.
Then suddenly it will click.
You've made a mistake.
It's important not to panic.
Realize what you're dealing with.
Don't expect an apology.
However they may have wronged you, get over it. You can't rationalize with the irrational.
Break up with them.
Do it gently and with tact.
Make your allegiances clear.
Emphasize that there's no one else, you just feel like hanging with your friends and doing you. Drop the "it's not you, it's me" line if necessary.
Everything will seem dark in retrospect.
Once you're no longer remotely interested in your ex, objectivity settles in. You'll look back and see all the warning signs you were blind to: that weirdly divulgent story they told you when you first met, the 3-month-old meatloaf you found in their oven (and the generally chaotic state of their apartment), or the dog they said they had but you never actually saw.
Don't be hard on yourself.
No, you will never be God. You're only human, and human beings make mistakes. No one wants to be alone. Who's not going to welcome a friendly face and a roll in the hay?
Seek help from friends and family.
It's not going to be easy. Your ex will do whatever they can to keep themselves in your life (assuming they were a stage 5 clinger to begin with). Their unique set of stalker skills will make them a nightmare for people like you. Surround yourself with people you trust emotionally (and who you can use as human shields when the worst happens).
Sever all contact.
Delete, block, ignore. No texts, phone calls, or emails. Never reach out to your ex for any reason whatsoever. Time to start a new life.
Keep an eye out.
Insanity can surprise you, for it is cunning.
Lock your car.
Oh, so you turned around one day and there she was in your backseat? Why aren't you locking your car? And your house or apartment for that matter. If it gets to this point of paranoia, just get security cameras. If that doesn't work...
Call the police.
Get a restraining order.
If your ex will not stop harassing you (or even threatening you with violence), and you find yourself in a pit of despair, contact a lawyer and file for a "get the fuck away from me order" aka an anti-harassment order.
You've earned it. Coming out the other side of a bad situation is something to be proud of. You have the rest of your life to make better decisions. Wake up in the morning and sing in the shower.
If they ever come back, and all else has failed...