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Premiere Of HBO's 'Insecure' - Red Carpet

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The completion of any relationship leaves behind an uncomfortable gaping space that echoes against its own empty caverns until it’s filled again. Our significant others become our routine–our days, hours, lunches, mornings, and one day, after many bad days, that partner becomes a habit we must force ourselves to break.

The familiarity of this painful cycle was perfectly captured in the season 2 finale of HBO’s hit show ‘Insecure.’ We were willing companions on the Issa & Lawrence relationship ride and then, abruptly, the gears of the rollercoaster track stopped mid-way uphill. Apologies and fantasy sequences wrapped up their fictional romance with a bow, yet somehow, we want more from their union.

Show creator Issa Rae’s decision to not bring Lawrence along for season 3 is a profound and necessary character development choice. Issa literally set her past on fire (RIP to that apartment) and is actively making moves to incorporate Daniel (Y’Lan Noel) into her permanent ho-tation. Despite the audience’s devout worship of #LawrenceHive, where would his character fit into Issa’s refreshed life plot?

And lest us not forget, Issa is the focal point of this show. No matter how wrapped up we get in the storylines of Molly, Dro, etc, they are all orbiting planets in the Issa universe. I respect the creative decision to keep the focus on Issa as a woman versus her ancillary (and rotating) male counterparts. Lawrence was not a co-star in this story, and we ultimately have to respect Issa’s fictional ex fading into the periphery just like our own exes would (or should!)

“We want to stay as true to life as possible. They had a great conversation at the end of season two and it was just about like, hey, she’s moving on Daniel, sometimes we have those conversations,” Rae told Vulture.

“You never see the exes again. And it’s okay! You gotta explore life without Lawrence.”

And maybe we would all benefit from going no contact with ‘our Lawrence.’ Characters existing beyond their expiration date tend to be toxic on and off screen.

Research shows that frequent contact wth an ex is associated with decreased satisfaction with your current partner over time. Studies even correlate people who stay in contact with their exes with psychopathic personality disorders such as narcissism. Psychology aside, two things literally cannot occupy the same space at the same time, that includes the past and present.

Even though most exes do the ‘make up to break up’ dance for years, maybe there is a lesson to be gleaned from Issa’s decisiveness.



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Issa Rae’s ‘Insecure’ Character Is Moving On From Lawrence, Why Can’t We?  was originally published on