Feedback on "How My Best Friend Ruined My Sweatshirt"

"How My Best Friend Ruined My Sweatshirt" is a light title for a heavy piece by "Ryla." Ryla opens her piece with her washing a sweatshirt to "get her scent to fade." Not Ryla's scent-her best friend's. Then she tells us the story from the beginning. It started as a friendship. But Ryla developed feelings for her best friend-whom she never names. Her best friend controlled her. Ryla describes how her best friend knew that she liked her and would tease her saying "maybe one night, if it was late and she was careless she'd give [Ryla] what [she] really wanted." Ryla's best friend would do little things like sit too close or let a touch linger. But then she broke Ryla's heart. Her best friend was with someone. "Romantically." Slowly, Ryla's love for her turned into anger and hatred. She cut all ties with this girl. And her best friend let her just walk away like that. "And that was confirmation that she never loved me as I loved her." Ryla did everything to avoid this girl. And then her best friend announced that she was transferring to a different school. They're last moment together was a hug that they shared. Neither girl let go. "Until one of [them] did." Ryla ends her piece as she starts it: with the scene of her washing the sweatshirt.

My friend told me to read this piece. He said "Read it, Juliet. It's practically your life." But I never had a friend who controlled me so much that I couldn't escape it. Correction: I've never loved anyone enough to let them control me. Correction: I totally have. But the situation was very different. We loved each other in the same way. I even planned on going to the same high school as him just to be with him. Until I suddenly decided I didn't want him anymore. I treated him like he was just "another boy" in my long list of lost lovers. But he is not just another boy. He never was and he never will be. He means everything to me and he'll never know. He didn't hurt me in the way Ryla's best friend hurt her. It was the other way around. I hurt him. Too many times to count. But I do care. That's the difference between me and unnamed best friend of Ryla. And I hope he isn't washing his sweatshirt: the sweatshirt that I wore with pride as I walked across a stage in front of my whole grade: the sweatshirt that smells like him which makes me feel safe: the sweatshirt that marked me as his. And the sweatshirt I ruined for him.





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