Authors Note: This is about the end of a relationship explained from the point of view of both parties, set to the Guns n Roses song Don't Cry. There are two versions of the song, both of which are re-produced here without permission from the band. Although I hope Axl Rose won't get too upset over it, as I think that is the reason for the two versions anyway!

After each verse the perspective changes to the other person, and after the chorus it is just general commentary on relationships and is not meant to be from the perspective of either person, which may be confusing to some, but hopefully works well for most people.

Talk to me softly
There is something in your eyes
Don't hang your head in sorrow
And please don't cry
I know how you feel inside I've
I've been there before
Somethin is changin' inside you
And don't you know

Deep down, I probably knew that this time would be the last time he would accept me behaving in the way I did. After all, how many times can you tell a guy you love him and then go around sleeping with other men before he gets fed up of you and chooses to walk away?

I can try and defend myself by saying that I was always honest about what kind of person I am, and reminded him constantly that we were never even actually in a relationship, but deep down I know that it doesn't work that way in real life. When he told me he had feelings for me I should have told him straight that while I valued his friendship I was not and never would be interested in us being anything more than friends.

Instead, I chose to lead him on, even slept with him a few times, and told him constantly how much I loved him. So I guess he has every right to be mad at me. As much as I have always valued my independence, and no matter how much I feel like I should be allowed to do what I want with my life, I should have considered his feelings.

After all, it's not like I can say I didn't know how he felt about me. He made that perfectly clear, and he did so many things for me, never asking for anything else in return, except respect. And I couldn't even give him that.

If we could see tomorrow
What of your plans
No one can live in sorrow
Ask all your friends
Times that you took in stride
They're back in demand
I was the one who's washing
Blood off your hands

I was never interested in relationships. People would tell me when I was younger that one day I would meet a girl who would make me change my mind, and I used to laugh at them. And then I met her, and every person that I had ever scoffed at in the past was proven right. Sort of.

See, the thing is, when they said those things, I am fairly certain that they were thinking that the girl I met would feel the same way about me that I did about her. And again, they were sort of right. At least, I like to think so. For a little while anyway. But it was never going to be enough, and as much as I tried to respect the fact that she wanted her independence and needed to do her own thing, it hurt me so much to hear her say she loved me and then watch her go off with any guy she could find except the one she claimed to love.

Don't get me wrong, I knew that there were plenty of reasons that things might not work out between us. The age difference was one, although I don't think that was ever really as serious an issue as it might have been for other people. Bureaucracy was always going to be a huge obstacle to anything long term happening between us, as her legal status to stay in the country was reliant on her getting a visa, which was by no means certain.

The fact that we both intended to travel elsewhere at some point, and not necessarily to the same countries at the same time, would also have an impact on how things turned out further down the line. But in the meantime, I was willing to try, and that in itself was something I would never have believed possible until it happened.

Don't you cry tonight
I still love you baby
Don't you cry tonight
Don't you cry tonight
There's a heaven above you baby
And don't you cry tonight

What exactly defines a relationship? At what moment do people stop being just friends and start being 'in a relationship?' I think this is a difficult thing to judge. I guess usually it is at the point where a conscious decision is made by both parties to define what their aims and goals are together. But I also think that sometimes people enter into a relationship of sorts without ever officially being a couple.

For example, if you live with someone and hook up occasionally, and then both profess your love for one another, surely you are then in a relationship. Okay, you may not have said the words that officially make you a couple, but things can only progress so far in a certain direction between you without it becoming clear to everyone that you are now more than just friends.

And maybe there are valid reasons for not making things 'official', or reasons that seem valid at the time, but at the end of the day in such a situation you are inevitably dealing with the feelings of two people who say they love one another, and so if you don't have clearly defined rules one of those people for sure, but probably both in the end, is going to get hurt in some way.

Give me a whisper
And give me a sign
Give me a kiss before you
tell me goodbye
Don't you take it so hard now
And please don't take it so bad
I'll still be thinkin' of you
And the times we had...baby

I think one day I am going to look back on this whole episode and realize what a mistake I made. For the first time I found somebody who knew the kind of person I was, who was never under any illusions about my faults and insecurities. Someone who listened to me talk about all the mistakes I have made and all the stupid things I had done in my life, many of which I would inevitably do again. And he loved me anyway.

My response to finding a guy who loved me unconditionally was not to accept it and be happy, but to constantly push the boundaries to see just how much he would accept before he finally gave up on me.

I didn't just hook up with other guys, I did it regularly in front of him to make sure he knew what I was doing. I told him I loved him, and then went off for six weeks with another guy and completely ignored the existence of the guy I claimed to love. And always he was there for me, waiting patiently, hoping that one day I would see what was staring me in the face every time I looked in his direction.

The one guy in my life who would always be there for me, never offering any judgment on the way I behaved, and constantly there to listen to me about my problems.

I know the things you wanted
They're not what you have
With all the people talkin'
It's drivin' you mad
If I was standin' by you
How would you feel
Knowing your love's decided
And all love is real

I tried so hard to put up with the way she behaved, to not judge her or get mad at her. Maybe that was part of the problem. By being so passive, by accepting that this was a part of who she was, and hoping that she would eventually realize that she didn't need to go off with every guy who offered to buy her a drink in order to feel like someone cared, I guess she could never really believe that I cared as much as I did.

After all, if I loved her so much, why would I not get mad when she made out with other guys in front of me? What she never realized though was that inside I was raging, infuriated with her for not caring enough about me to at least do things somewhere that I couldn't see, and with people I didn't know.

I think that was one of the things that hurt the most. I was willing to give her the freedom to do what she wanted and get things out of her system, but her deliberately hooking up with guys I knew, guys who knew there was something between the two of us, even if they didn't know exactly what it was, that really wound me up. Because that felt like I was then getting taken for a fool by both of them.

I have to confess, I have never held a particularly high opinion of myself. I know there are some things I do well, and other things I do badly, just like everyone. Deep down I know I am a decent guy, and I know that there are plenty of people who respect me. But when a guy I know sleeps with a girl that it is clear I am more than just friends with, it feels to me like he is laughing at me because I am not good enough to get her. And she makes it quite clear that she feels the same way about me.

Why else would she do it otherwise? Clearly, despite her professions of love, she actually thinks I am nothing more than a fool.

And don't you cry tonight
Don't you cry tonight
Don't you cry tonight
There's a heaven above you baby
And don't you cry tonight

It's a question that men have been asking for generations, probably even centuries, but what is it exactly that women want? Guys are told that they want to be treated with respect and kindness, and this makes sense. After all, who in their right mind would want anything other than their partner to respect them and be kind?

In reality though, this doesn't actually seem to be the case. As a self-professed nice guy, I have lost count of the number of women I have met over the years who constantly complain about their boyfriends and partners treating them badly, and yet never do anything to change their situation. Personally, if I was with somebody who didn't respect me, I would walk away and find someone who did.

Yet women everywhere put up with guys treating them like shit, and constantly complain to the nice guy, who is their friend, and usually single, about their partners. How do you women actually think this makes the nice guys feel? Most of the time he is just waiting for you to realize that you don't have to put up with being treated poorly all the time when there is a perfectly decent guy just waiting for a chance to treat you the way you deserve.

And yet you continue to bitch about your situation, and even if you leave one guy that doesn't show you the respect you deserve, you invariably replace him with a clone, and us nice guys sit here wondering what it is exactly that we're doing wrong all the time.

And please remember that I never lied
And please remember
how I felt inside now honey
You gotta make it your own way
But you'll be alright now sugar
You'll feel better tomorrow
Come the morning light now baby

I have always been an independent person, wanting to do my own thing as and when I wanted to, and never really wanted to get tied down to somebody else. Which is why I behaved the way I did, I was too afraid of commitment, and part of me was worried about getting too close to somebody, only to have my visa denied and be forced to leave him behind.

I was being selfish in a way, and trying to protect myself from getting hurt in the long run. The ironic thing, as I am starting to realize, is that by being so selfish I actually ended up losing one of the best friends I have ever made. And I didn't even realize it when it happened, because I was too focused on my goal at the time, which was getting drunk and stoned and then getting down and dirty with a guy I had only just met.

Who was also the boss of the guy I was supposed to be spending time with before I was forced to go home, and who I had spent the last six months informing of my love for him at one moment, only to immediately push away and reject the rest of the time.

Just before he left that night, he gave me a big hug and told me once again how much he loved me. I thought nothing of it at the time, because he often did things like that, but looking back on it I know he was aware of my intentions for the rest of the night, aware that I was once more going to let him down the next day when we were supposed to do things together, and had made the decision already that it was one time too many. That hug was his way of saying goodbye, and I didn't even realize.

I thought I could live in your world
As years all went by
With all the voices I've heard
Something has died
And when you're in need of someone
My heart won't deny you
So many seem so lonely
With no one left to cry to baby

My boss was the final straw. She didn't even know the guy, and he was homeless at the time having been kicked out by his girlfriend a couple of days earlier, and she was choosing to spend the night with him rather than me, the guy she supposedly loved. It probably never even occurred to her how much it might hurt me to have to face the fact that every time I went to work in future it would be hell for me, knowing that the woman I loved chose to fuck my boss rather than spend time with me.

It was one let down too many for me. In the time we had known each other there had been so many times where we made arrangements to do things together, and every single time she had let me down, and even now, a few days before she would have to leave the country for good, knowing that we might never see each other again, she was choosing another guy over me.

And not just any other guy, but my boss.

We had been supposed to be going out together that night, but I got called into work at the last minute to help out for a couple of hours, and so she came to the bar to meet me. Literally two hours later I had finished work, and she had made the decision that she was going to stay and wait for the bar to close so she could sleep with my boss.

This not only meant that our plans to go out together for the night were clearly over, but it also meant that she was not going to turn up the following day to a football tournament I was playing in to show her support. So she was effectively cancelling not one but two pre-arranged dates with someone she claimed to love in order to have sex with a stranger.

It was one time too many for me, and so I gave her a hug before I left the bar and told her I loved her, and then when she wasn't there the next morning I sent her a message to tell her it was over. I was not prepared to put up with any more of her shit. I was done with loving someone who was a selfish bitch.

My entire life I avoided relationships, avoided getting close to another person. And the one time I was willing to take a chance on someone, she just made it clear that I had actually been right all along. It just isn't worth the trouble putting faith in someone else, as they will hurt you in every way imaginable.

And don't you cry tonight
And don't you cry tonight
And don't you cry tonight
There's a heaven above you baby
And don't you cry
Don't you ever cry
Don't you cry tonight
Baby maybe someday
Don't you cry
Don't you ever cry
Don't you cry
Tonight

I guess people can never really know what kind of person they are going to fall in love with, and the thing that makes it clear it is actually love, and not just some silly infatuation that will pass with time, is the fact that when it happens you will put up with whatever the other person does to you and still hang in there, hoping that one day they might change and become the person you know deep down they are capable of being.

In reality though, once people get to a certain age they rarely change, and all you are doing by staying with them is wasting your time. You are better off just walking away as soon as you realize what they are like. That way, you don't get hurt as much, and have a chance to find someone else that maybe won't be such a huge let down.

The only thing we can do as we go through life is try to be good people, try not to intentionally cause other people pain. The problem is, there are people out there who don't care if they cause pain to others, as long as they get what they want. And they seem to like to use the good people that are out there to get their kicks.

It's almost like some women have a goal in life to turn the nice guys into dickheads, as in this way they can become justified in their opinion that all men like to treat women like shit. Well, speaking as a nice guy, I have to say that I won't ever let that happen to me. I will always treat women with the respect they deserve, and those that don't deserve any respect will be given it anyway.

Because that is MY goal in life is to try to turn the world into a better place in the only way I know how. One day at a time, showing people respect whether they deserve it or not, and hoping that in this way they may one day learn to behave in a similar manner to people.