Writing a Letter to An Ex? Consider This…

Go Slow - Sign on RoadFor those of you who have been through a breakup, were you ever tempted to write your ex to pour out your emotions? Many of us have been there. I know I have…

When we’re dumped, we can be left with a whole host of feelings and thoughts that remain unsaid, and all we crave is to just say it, all of it, once and for all. Been there?

This is sort of a follow up/reiteration to a previous blog on the subject (5 Things to Consider). The inspiration for this blog post came about because of a young gentleman, a few years out of a break up (of sorts) shared his story with me, and a letter to his ex, the other day…

“Oh boy!” – I thought to myself as I read his intensely-heavy email to a woman he’s not even had contact with for more than a year!

While I respected his right to write, I suggested he might wish to change the stance, just a little bit…You see, I pride myself into putting myself into other people’s shoes. As such, I could just imagine how she might take such a heavy, intense, heart-wrenching email (not to mention after more than a year of silence…!)

NO SUCH THING AS “MISTAKES” BUT…

While I don’t tend to be a believer in “mistakes” or having “regrets”, I thought I’d share some things I have learned from my writing my own letters to my ex(es)and from 12+ years of dumpees here doing the same!

I will use “mistakes” in this instance, but only because I couldn’t think of a better way to write this piece. So if you’re considering writing a letter (or email) to your ex, you might wish to consider some of these following points (or not – the choice is entirely yours), before you do!

MISTAKE #1 WRITING TOO SOON

First of all – our feelings do change over time – (in spite ourselves). As soon as it happens, in the early days and weeks, a lot of people want to beg them to reconsider, rant to them, threaten to hurt them (or themselves), guilt them, or a whole host of other emotional reactions.

My thought is – go ahead it and get all out of your head – onto the sheet or screen. Vent every single, solitary thing you want to say to your ex…but sit on it for a while.

Or if you need to say it then say it on a site like lettertomyex.com – instead. Just please don’t send it to your ex (yet). I’m telling you, that in my experience of more than a dozen years around here, things can change in a matter of weeks.

I have seen so many people regret acting impulsively when they felt like this. In some cases, it meant it cost them any sort of friendship or relationship later on, because it served to push the ex further away and reinforced the reason for the break-up to begin with!

I understand the impulse to pour your heart out, and say every last thing you’re feeling, I do, but the fact is, more often than not, how you feel in the early days/weeks/months – can and will likely change over time. With a bit of healing our perspective often alters dramatically.

Boy I remember (pretty vividly) writing the most raw, hand-written letter to the “so-called love of my life” just after he left me for his work colleague.

I was so hurt, betrayed, indignant, bitter and so forth. I poured every ounce of bitterness, bile, venom, anger, hurt, frustration, sadness, etc into that letter.

But months later, I thankfully hadn’t sent it. When I re-read it, I knew I didn’t really feel that same way as I had in the early days. A bit of healing toned down much of that rawness. Between you and me,…I still sent it, but at least I added a new page explaining I had felt that way “then”, but that I no longer saw it all the same way. I ended the letter with actual forgiveness and wishing him well (as I recall)….

He never responded (they seldom do) – but it didn’t matter because I sent it for me – not for any response from him. Why would he want to go back to address things or apologise for not loving me anymore and for loving someone else? I reckon he knew that he broke my heart, but at that point, it didn’t matter to him – he’d moved on!

That’s really so often the case. It really is.

Knowing what I know now – I’d probably just write it in a journal, and not bother sending that proverbial letter to my ex…But that’s just me!

MISTAKE # 2 – Blaming the Ex for Everything

Another common mistake is going through all of the ex’s perceived crimes. Reeling off things that were said and done – one by one – will simply put the ex on the defensive, and they won’t be able to actually hear what you’re trying to say.

A better tactic is to use the ole chestnuts “I feel” or “I felt” instead of you “you did” this, that and the other.

So instead of blaming your ex for any pain you’re currently feeling – try coming it from a place of “I’m taking responsibility for my own happiness”.

I believe on some level we are responsible for our relationships and our break ups. It’s never really ONE PERSON’S FAULT for a break up. Just as relationships take two – so do break ups. It’s not all your ex’s fault – nor is it all yours.

Yeah, I know many of you won’t like that statement, and will probably disagree. That’s totally your prerogative…I am just speaking from the perspective of the life and relationships I’ve learned over the last several decades…

I was able to investigate internally, and find in all my relationships and break ups, that I had contributed in some way. Maybe I’d been too much of a nag, been controlling, been too independent, or too needy, or just hard to be around sometimes.

Finding examples of my own short-comings or imperfections helped me to be more empathetic to my exes (even the one who cheated on me!) and to less likely to cast any blame.

Blame, to me is utterly pointless. You may not have had any say in the way things transpired (read: ended), but you are the one who has every say in what you choose to do with the experience now.

That’s an incredibly empowering shift.

MISTAKE # 3: Begging Your Ex

If you’re writing a note that is trying to cajole, convince, coerce your ex into being with you, I am telling you now it won’t work. It will only serve to make you look desperate, and frankly you shouldn’t want to be with anyone that you need to persuade to be with you. They should want to be with you, unquestioningly.

Begging anyone to be with you, reconcile with you, or stay with you is quite frankly demeaning. It is a way of external validation, and it puts your self worth in some else’s hands. That should never be the case.

If someone is really intent on leaving – let them go. Don’t try to write the perfect letter to “win” them back, because more often than not, even if you did, it would be short lived.

I’ve seen more success by the people who say “Ok, I love you, I will miss you but if you’re going – then go. I’ll miss you” — then those who say “Please don’t go. I’ll do anything. I love you. Please, we can make it work”.

Be honest, which would would you respect more? Which one is more attractive to you?

Begging is more likely just going to reinforce someone’s decision to walk away. The person who is always more appealing is the one who goes – “You’re leaving?…Ok, I won’t stop you” and then they start getting on with their life – and with the business of healing.

CONCLUSION:

So go ahead and write it all out. Use the aforementioned Letter to My Ex site – or a journal – or what have you. Write it all out but just think twice about actually sending it to your ex.

Only send it if:

1) you truly have no expectation of a reply (and won’t be hurt if you don’t get one)

2) you’re not trying to “convince” them to meet up, get back together, love you etc.

3) you don’t have an expectation of miraculous “closure” by sending it (it doesn’t always work that way. In fact it seldom does…)

4) you can come across in a non-heavy, accusatory way. Start light and work up to the big dialogue!

5) as tough as it is to do – you actually forgive them. (I know, many of you will think “I’ll never forgive my ex Thea”. That’s your folly though…forgiveness is FREEDOM, for yourself, not for them.)

In all honesty, from what I’ve seen personally and professionally, the letter to the ex doesn’t tend to “make or break” things. I have had it re-unite me with one guy – but even that was short lived. [Often a break up has happened for a reason. Unless that reason has been addressed - it's likely to happen again and again.]

If you do have some heavy dialogue to discuss – don’t let it be in your first letter or email to them. Consider sending a lighter, toe-in-the-water email first. Then perhaps you can arrange to meet up face to face to discuss some of these things in your letter.

Finally, one challenge with letters is that it’s there in black and white FOREVER, and once again, things change over time. Feelings. Perspectives. Attitudes. We’re not constant. We’re emotional beings. We’re always evolving.

So again – write it out if you must but truly think about this decision to send it.

Adopt Serena’s “48 hour rule” – before sending it. If you make any changes after the 48 hours – the the clock resets. Continue this until either you decide you don’t feel like sending it anymore, or it says exactly what you want to say, and that’s it.

Send it then, and only then.

Good luck!

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64 Comments

  1. Hi Thea,

    Thanks for a WONDERFUL site. Your 12 stages video is brilliant and you should be very proud of yourself. As a filmmaker (who just had a film at Cannes!), I can say that your production value is AMAZING. More than that, the content is flawless. Well done.

    That being said, I’m wondering if you can offer some thoughts on the last message I sent to my long-distance ex, who dumped me after I unfortunately neglected her for about 4 weeks because I got busy with the movie, and work, and was hanging out with other girls. My problem was that I failed to make our relationship exclusive (idiot) and she ended up going back to her ex boyfriend (who left her 18 months ago to chase after her best friend)–and she still went back to him. I have terrible guilt over my behavior, but this was my first relationship EVER and so I didn’t realize how I should have treated her. I hate myself every day.

    Anyway, we had a phone call two weeks ago that basically was her telling me to move on and that she doesn’t think it would ever be the same again with us. Here is what I wrote to her the next day:

    “I never thought you would hurt me so much to the point where I don’t even know who you are anymore. You’re certainly not the girl I met last summer. After all the good things we shared together and all the special moments, I really thought you cared about me. But now I realize it was all in my mind. I was playing both roles and just imagining that you had true feelings for me. It brought a smile to my face when you said you were excited that someone sent you flowers. It crushed me when you said you were disappointed they were from me. You’re right: it’s over. I have better things to do with my time that shed any more tears over a girl who doesn’t recognize my value. I have better things to do than wait for you to realize what a mistake you are making. I love you HER NAME. But not to the point that I forget myself and who I am. I have given you everything my heart has to offer–more than I’ve given any woman in my life–and wow, you threw it away. Okay I finally got it! P.S. – I feel sorry for you.”

    I regret the P.S. I am also grieving terribly, and am just trying to figure out what to do. How to feel great about myself again: either with her or without her. But right now, I feel horrible, and the breakup has been ‘happening’ for over three months. She initiated it three months ago and I’ve been trying to get her back ever since–even flying overseas in May to show her how much she meant to me. Didn’t go well. Nor did the 25-page hand written letter I sent thereafter. I’ve been foolishly trying to get her back ever since. And this has truly been the absolutely worst summer of my life, because she led me on twice into thinking she was going to visit me for two weeks this summer. She didn’t.

    I finally sent this message where I thought that I decided I need to move on. But I can’t move on. I am struggling desperately. But on the bright side, I have managed to not contact her in over two weeks. It’s about 2.5 weeks now. But I’m not feeling any better: i wake up EVERY morning in sheer agony, wishing I were dead.

    Any thoughts? Should I just leave it alone? Should I apologize to her? I am having such a hard time getting over her. She was the greatest thing that ever happened to me. (“Then why did you neglect her and date other girls?”) Because I don’t have experience with relationships; I was scared of commitment; and quite frankly, I was an idiot who didn’t know how to properly treat the girl you love. I will never make that mistake again. I just wish I could apply this lesson… to her. :(

    Thanks much for any thoughts!
    -SuperSad

  2. Hmmm, I have quite a few responses to make on the blog comments here that should have been before yours (from a few days ago) but yours struck me between the eyes. LOL. So I thought I’d start with yours first!

    Ok first off, let me thank you for the comments. That’s great you liked the video and the “production values” – as a film maker yourself, you might enjoy the other videos on the 2nd videos page, in particular you’ll see the more “documentary” style film trailer that I’d love to finish one day. “Meet the Stars (So Far). Going since 2006, it’s at the “rough cut” stage and sometimes I want to finish it so I can full move on, and others abandon it.

    I oscillate between the two!

    That’s done. My plug.

    To you it will be “tough love” and a bit brutal – not because I am being a bitch, but because I have seen most of it all before and have learned a thing or two over the dozen years here. So sorry in advance.

    I read your paragraph posted (of your note to her, I mean) and rolled my eyes. It was completely HUMAN what you wrote. All of it. But it was completely RAW. It’s why I wrote the last blog about the things to consider before writing to your ex.

    You wrote from a hurt place, and spoke your truth, but from a bit more distance I suspect that won’t be your truth.

    If I read it as if it were written to (at) me, I’d have gone “pah, dick” and then got all defensive, as she most likely have done. I’d have also thought “geez I see why I dumped him”.

    Here’s why…

    “I never thought you would hurt me so much to the point where I don’t even know who you are anymore. You’re certainly not the girl I met last summer.”

    I am sure that’s both true and false. I’d say anything you say about HER you’re saying about yourself – because we’re all mirrors of each other. Of course she’s not the same – we’re all growing and evolving and changing and learning etc…You aren’t the same as you were a year ago.

    On the other hand, she will still very much be the woman you fell in love with and so clearly STILL love.

    “After all the good things we shared together and all the special moments, I really thought you cared about me. But now I realize it was all in my mind.”

    Yawn + eye roll. Yadda yadda yadda. Frankly SHE DOES CARE ABOUT YOU. There is no way to have had a relationship with someone for any length of time and then stop caring. On some level just as you’re saying YOU deserved better – so did she. [*by your own admission...]

    It wasn’t in your mind, she did [and does still] on some level. The trouble is it might simply not be enough for a relationship. She may like you, love you and yet no longer feel it’s enough to be with you in a relationship sense.

    The rest of the note is just a bunch of indignant EGO waffle. “Well I won’t sit around here waiting for someone like you I deserve better and I am off to find someone who appreciates me blah blah blah”.

    That’s not what you necessarily wrote but that’s how EGO comes across (the bastard). Egos are a pain in the ass. They are so conditional. “I love you as long as you love me. As long as you behave the way I think you should. As long as you don’t do anything I don’t want you to do or say anything I don’t want you to say”….

    If you really do love this girl let her go. Should you apologise? Yes – maybe not right away but I reckon you should write a sentence or two – (a 25 page letter? Yawn! You don’t seem to do stuff in 1/2 measures and you may think you’re making grand Hollywood gestures but on the wrong girl you’ll just push her further away which is what I suspect you have done. OTT)

    So something along the lines of:

    “Hey I am sorry about that last correspondence. As I am sure you can appreciate, I was speaking from a very raw place. I am grateful for the time we’ve had together. I’m sad it had to end, but I respect your decision to do so. You meant a lot to me and will always hold a special place in my heart. Take care”.

    No much more than that – but choose your own wording accordingly. OK?

    Send it and let it all go.

    An attitude of GRATITUDE will always work better than what you did. Because when you start telling somehow how awful their behavior is, how much they changed, how much they hurt you – all their perceived “crimes” – you put them on the defensive, and they can’t even hear or take in what you’re saying.

    It just activates their defensive mode and makes them come up with reasons to justify their behavior.

    I am not saying write a letter that lies to someone. I am saying wait until the pain has dissipated and the true feelings shine through. When you wrote, you were clouded in negativity, hurt, indignation, hurt, defensiveness, bitterness etc.

    That’s what shone through.

    How would YOU Have felt reading your letter if it were from her?????

    You know?

    So for now – hang in there. Keep getting up everyday and finding things to occupy yourself with. Start working on ideas for the next film! I often do some of my best “work” when I am in the stage you’re in because it’s RAW and it’s REAL – it’s HUMAN. Most of us have been there. So don’t try to ignore it, but try to USE it. Channel it.

    This break up can be the absolute MAKING of you.

    Though your note was mean spirited – some of it’s actually right. You WILL go on to find someone who does love and appreciate you. My hope is that you won’t be quite as intense and OTT with her. Sometimes holding back a bit is a good thing.

    You’re going to be ok. It’s shitty now but it won’t always be. Truly it won’t.

    I think also the MIND is a tricky thing. You did the best you could at the time with the skills you had on offer. As you grow and learn more you’ll do better. You behaved the way you did because on some level maybe you actually knew she wasn’t the one. Your mind is tricking you into believe you LOVE her. I am not so sure. Time will tell. If it’s REAL LOVE – it keeps on loving no matter where you are or where she is with – and not matter WHO she is with. Love is about wanting the absolute best for someone else – their highest good – even if they’re with someone else. That’s love.

    What you may have is more likely ATTACHMENT and Conditional Love or even Lust. But if it’s REAL LOVE it won’t stop – even if you never see her again. Can you honestly say that’s what you have. Whether she’s with that ex. Marrying him. Having a baby with him. All that “good stuff” – and you’re HAPPY for her? How does that feel?

    Anyway you’ll be fine. Keep me posted. Contact me via our soyouvebeendumped FB page (message me) – and tell me your film info. I was in Cannes in Oct for MIPCOM and it was among the greatest experiences of my life. :)

    Hang on in there tiger. You doing fine. Moment to moment. x

  3. Hello, I also said many things I regret now from a very raw place. In e-mails even and text messages. OH GREAT! Wish I had seen Thea’s suggestions before doing that! Although my ex was already seeing someone else I still regret saying things in anger. Horrible feeling. Don’t even remember half of it. Hope someday to apologize somehow as suggested maybe but I really don’t want to talk to him that much anyway and at the same time miss him so much. So confusing. I wonder if the new girl saw the things I said? hmmm…. (no wonder you dumped her!)

  4. Ha ha ha – oops HINDSIGHT IS ALWAYS 20/20. Don’t sweat it. Sure apologise one day if you feel the need to do so. He’s probably smart enough to get how pissed you were. There’s nothing wrong if in passing one day (when he’s on his own) you say “Hey I just wanted to take a moment to apologise for some of my erratic texts/emails – hope you can appreciate I was just in that ‘raw’ stage but I am over it now, sorry”. Smile and saunter off :)

    >> I wonder if the new girl saw the things I said? hmmm…. (no wonder you dumped her!)

    Precisely! Well hopefully you won’t do that again right? :-)

    Take care toots!

  5. I’ve seriously been considering doing this, but of course there’s hesitation. Oddly enough, I am not the “dumpee” but the “dumper”. Here’s a rundown of my situation, I hope someone can help.

    A year ago this past July, my boyfriend and I moved out of our small town and into a big city together. Sure we had a few friends here, but our schedules were so crazy that we seldom had time for outings with them. We pretty much just had each other, and that was fine with us. We were excited to be here, however at times I was homesick, missing my close friends and family (naturally). I’m an artist, but I was working in retail, and didn’t have the time nor energy to create anything at times. I was slowly getting very discouraged about this… in addition to being away from family and friends it was getting me kinda down. After a while I started to feel like something was missing. I pinned my depression about everything else on “not having passion/fire” in our relationship. He was stunned that I felt like this, and said we should give this a few months, and that maybe I’d get over it.

    Well about a month later an ex sent me a message. I don’t want to pin this on being vulnerable, but I guess that’s what you would call it. I liked the attention. Horrible. I started messaging him here and there, becoming more and more distant with my boyfriend. A few months passed, and he asked once more if I was still feeling the same, and I said yes. We decided to break it off in June. Being that our lease does not end until November, we’re still living together, and said that we’d still be there for each other. Although things seemed amicable, I knew at some point we’d both start dating. He started first. Now he’s talking to this new girl, and I just can’t stand to see it. I’ve broken down in front of him a few times, saying that I made a mistake, but he’s told me that he gave me 5 months of chances and I didn’t take them. He’s right. I just know that I regret doing the things I’ve done to the best man I’ve ever known. He’s my best friend, the only person I can trust anything with. But now because of my stupid, inconsiderate mistakes, he’s moved on. But he has that right.

    So here I am, still living with him. Seeing him talk to her, seeing him walk out the door to go meet her. It hurts. I’m really considering leaving before the lease ends, because I just can’t take it. I was going to write a letter, apologizing, and telling him that I really do care. Obviously it’s hard to believe due to my actions, but I really am genuine. I’m not sure how to go about this, or if I even have the right to do so, being that I’m the one that did the hurting. I just can’t forgive myself, he’s such a good person. Help! Any suggestions?

  6. Well that’s a tough one to be sure. Frankly it sounds like he’s having a total “rebound” fling for his own ego and I cringe for the new girl. He no doubt still has feelings for you (even if he doesn’t show them) and it sure as hell will be hard if he starts to see you getting out there and on with things – having fun…

    I’d forgo the letter for a while and just try to be his “friend” (avoid talking about the new girl that will only hurt). If/when you do move out, then by all means write that letter.

    To be honest and blunt with you – (sorry) – it sounds like you only want him because someone else wants him now. He’s suddenly become more attractive to you but for MONTHS you weren’t interested. I don’t think you really are – even though he’s a great guy or you’d have been showing that and feeling it all along. It’s a case of “forbidden fruit”. If you really love and care for this guy then you’ll want him to be 100% happy even if that’s not with you!!

    As hard as it is to “let go” especially when under the same roof. I am guessing that’s what needs to happen for now.

    Not forever. Not saying it won’t work out in time between you two – who knows…but for now you need to step back and get on with healing. I feel like it’s a case of jealousy and if you had someone you are interested in and was interested in you – you’d probably not care quite so much.

    It’s probably more a case of him “moving on” (by appearances anyway – I don’t personally think he’s wise dating someone already AT ALL) and you wishing you were too.

    I know it’s hard to “detach from the outcome” but that is my best advice for now.

    Give it some time. Really dig deep beyond your EGO’s reaction to him and her…and ask yourself really what you’re feeling underneath. It’s not about them it’s about you.

    Be honest with him – face to face – how grateful you are for the time shared. Apologies for not being the easiest to live with and tell him your greatest hope is for his happiness – even with someone else (as much as it pains you to say and to actually feel).

    You two may really end up being (or remaining) the best of friends and possibly even more…

    But sounds like you’ve a lot on your plate…”day job”, and homesickness, etc…Doesn’t sound you’re in the best of places even without a break up on there too!

    So work on getting back to that happy, healthy, productive woman you most definitely are…and you’ll be amazed what starts to transpire as you do.

    You really are going to be ok…Keep writing the letter now if it helps you process your feelings. It can’t hurt but make it a letter of gratitude rather than “I’m so sorry I done ya wrong” type thing. You know? Don’t go for all those “If only you give me another chance,….” type pleads.

    This is just is what is meant to be for now. Not necessarily forever. Work on you because frankly that’s the only thing you have ANY control over…What you do, think, feel, eat, drink, how you spend your time, are you using it wisely? Worry less about what you can/can’t control.

    I know I said it before but I really do feel for little Miss New…I would NOT want to be in a situation like this – with a guy who’s clearly not “over” his ex, still living with her etc. It’s a confusing and challenging time (even if he doesn’t show that). He may be wrapped up in the newness of this and the whole EGO boost of it all (just as you once were) but it’s not really the recipe for a budding romance.

    You hang in there…Write but don’t send, *yet* anyway.

    Thea

  7. I get what you’re saying. I know how it looks… He even put it in perspective for me one night after I broke down, and was begging like an idiot. He said it’s like I was his toy, and I played with it and one day became bored and now it was my “old” toy. And then someone new comes along, sees this “old” toy and its like new to them, making the toy feel valued. This made me feel like dirt. I didn’t ever want to make him feel like he wasn’t cherished or valuable to me. I know my actions said otherwise… I know. But he really is worth more to me than that.

    It’s just so hard to not over analyze it all. Just a few weeks ago he tried to be intimate with me, and while I wanted to, part of me thought he was just being a typical guy, I don’t know. I was unsure. He then told me afterwards that it was my “last chance” to try to reconcile. How does one go from that to this in a couple of weeks? It just doesn’t make sense to me. He’s told me to my face several times since then, that he’s done with me and that we’re never getting back together. It just seems like a game is all. I don’t think you can turn it on/off that quickly can you?

    And also, living together has been challenging. He still wants to hang out, and asks where I’m going. I try not to do that much with him because I’m trying to detach myself from him. I don’t know. A part of me feels like I can fix this before the lease is up, but that probably wouldn’t be wise. There’s probably too much damage done to our foundation and would probably start to crumble. I know the answer is to leave, and let time pass. It’s just so hard.

  8. I was searching for some kind of relief/help…and I found this site. After 4 years in a relationship with someone I thought would love me forever…he recently told me he loves me….but is not “in love with me anymore”. The relationship for sure had it’s problems…but never did I eVer expect him to feel that way about me. I was totally blind sighted. I broke down during him telling me this…was emotionally hysterical….did the begging…the whole nine yards…then finally left his apartment. It has been 12 days since then…and the pain I am enduring is eXcruciating. I have moments where I doubt I will be able to survive this. I have no intention of writing letters…calling him…or anything of the kind. One bout of desperate begging and crying has made me feel fool enough. All I REALLY want to do is get RID of the pain. I never want to be with someone who does not love me…never…but I just resent having this bomb dropped on me and turning my inner joy into grueling agony. I am trying the best I can to stay busy…and to think positive…but the avalanche of pain strikes me every day…my energy is low…my depression is persistent…and I don’t want to live like this. I think this is the worst pain someone can go thru next to the loss of someone they love thru death. Only when someone dies…you know it was not their choice to leave you…but in this case it was. I will never understand how his love for me died. I am devastated.

  9. Sorry for the delay. The site was off for several days now…

    How are you doing now? The pain takes a while to go. It ebbs and flows in cases like this. Your inner joy will return it just takes a while and lots of effort to re-discover it again.

    I don’t know if REAL LOVE ever truly dies. i don’t think it does. Either he didn’t ever truly love you or he still does – but just not in the same way or in a way that sees him wanting to continue the relationship.

    You’re going to be ok it really just takes some time / effort / goal setting and working toward the joy once more.

    It’s about asking the right questions about this and not the wrong ones (like “what did i do to deserve this?” and “was i not good enough”)…

    Work on taking away what you can about yourself, your relationship, your break up and apply it to future interactions.

    Hope you’re hanging in there x.

  10. It took me awhile to find your response Thea….but I finally found it tonight….so thank you. I am doing pretty much the same. Fighting as hard as I can to stay functioning…but still in pain and disbelief. I find myself saying…”this can’t be real”…it is just so unfathomable to me that he could not want to be with me anymore. I still love him with all my heart. He has since sent me a letter…saying “he prays I am okay”…and that he “never meant to hurt me or mislead me”. That comment “mislead me” was like salt on the wound. This is a man who told me for 4 years that he loved me. I would say that was a little bit misleading. The only conclusion I can draw…is that I must have loved him more then he loved me….and I just did not know it. He also tried to call me once….after the letter…but his number is blocked….so all he got was a ringing phone with no answering machine. I am positive that his attempts to reach me are about guilt and worry and not love. Cause if he loved me … none of this would be happening. I can not emphasize enough how much this course of events NEVER crossed my mind. It all feels so wrong. Like there must be some kind of mistake. But apparently…it is real…and I dread living with this. I feel like I am in a nightmare that I can not wake up from. Of course I want to work on myself and my own life…but it’s not much fun when you are suffering so badly. I know he’s not coming back…and I just can’t believe it. I would do anything to not be living this nightmare of pain.

    p.s. Reading all the stories of these broken hearts is making me never want to be in a relationship ever again. It is terrible what people have to go through. Why find the joy of love if the price you have to pay is sheer agony.

  11. What a fabulous site. I already feel stronger and more positive from reading it. Thank you so much Thea-you’re a bit of a saviour in people’s time of need.
    I’ve written two letters to exs in my life-neither replied. The first one I was devastated immediately that I didn’t receive a reply-how could she hear my heart’s emotions and not acknowledge them? I am totally over her, despite at the time thinking that it wasn’t possible to love anyone that much again.

    I didn’t learn my lesson though and 4 months ago wrote a letter to someone who seemingly fell out of love with me and in love with someone else in 3 weeks-my fault for not communicating how i felt about her. Still beating myself up about that.

    I initially didn’t expect a response – I’d done it to say everything I hadn’t had the opportunity to say – however over time the same thing has eaten me up. How can someone who cares so much for you hear all of that and not even acknowledge it with an ‘I understand’ or ‘I’m sorry it didn’t work out’?

    My letter was far from perfect but didn’t blame her in any way, wasn’t abusive, didn’t beg or plead, had some gratitude in it. Was probably a bit too much on the pathetic ‘it’s all my fault’ lines, was certainly too long and was very raw (sent one week after the break up but had 24hours time out before sending it).

    Thing is I would probably send another if I broke up with someone else and didn’t feel I’d said everything. I would just have to accept that I won’t get anything back and accept that it’s a trade off between feeling that sadness of another rejection when they don’t respond but not having the regret of not saying everything. I’d try to follow the advice here a bit more though for the content.

    For anyone who is at the one week stage – I feel for your unbearable agony and it does get better.

  12. Hello again Thea. I have not heard back from you yet…but I realize you have alot of broken hearts coming at you…as well as your OWN life to deal with. When ever I feel that suffering coming on…I just sit on your site and read other people’s stories and your comments to them. It makes me feel not quite so alone…and I get insight from things you say. I thank God for this site…cause I have chosen not to talk about my pain with most people in my life. From past experience…I have learned it is not a good idea. I do not have a good support system. Many times I do not get the response or understanding that I need…and just end up with another thing to be upset about. Anyway…I have had some good days…or rather moments…where I have felt no pain…and felt hopeful…but it just dosen’t last. I have had to fight my way out of many an emotional break down. What bothers me the most…is him telling me he is “not in love with me anymore”. If he had said…I need time…I need space…or we are better off apart…I would have still been sad…but I think I could have handled that alot better. Many times people still love each other but can’t be together. But the method he used to break us up…by using THOSE WORDS…was the cruelest…most devastating thing he could have done to me. I want him to want me. And it is wrecking me that he does not. I can’t comprehend it. Don’t think I ever will. Even if he came back to me…I would never be with him again…because he used those hurtful words. There is no “ooops…I didn’t mean it” that I could ever accept. So one way or the other…I know it is truly over. My mind is going crazy wondering if there is another girl. I dread finding that out. More pain is just not something I want to deal with. Oh Thea….I hurt so much !

  13. Hi Tracy….I am SO sorry for what you’re going through….I SO feel your pain – and I know first hand how agonizing it is to lose a man you love – epsecially when he said that he wasn’t in love with you anymore. It makes me want to say, “why don’t you just rip my heart out instead?!”

    My ex and I broke up at the end of May. I was left devastated. My situation was similiar to yours – he told me that he didn’t “feel the same way about me.” It felt as though he had taken a baseball bat to my head. I thought I was going to faint. We were talking about getting married right before the breakup…and then….out of nowhere….he dumped me. But my boy is a major commitmentphobe….so….it was to be expected.

    He sent me a card a week after the breakup saying how sorry he was for causing me so much pain, and that he was very concerned for me. We’ve exchanged sporadic emails since, and we saw each other 3 weeks ago (I initiated the meeting). It was so wonderful to see him, and we got along so well….the conversation was fantastic (light, humorous, fun). I interjected relationship stuff into the conversation, never accusing him of anything, but only taking responsibility for what I did for causing its demise. He was very gracious, and thought that it was actually his fault. But we didn’t dwell on it too much. We hung out for 3 hours. He walked me to my car afterwards, gave me a long warm hug and planted a tender kiss on my mouth. A tear ran down my cheek, and I told him to reconsider giving our relationship a second shot. He said that he would, but I haven’t heard from him since.

    His mom has been in touch with me….when he went to visit her a couple of days later, she reported that he seemed very relaxed and happy….that she hadn’t seen him look so relaxed in a long time.

    The point I’m trying to make here Tracy is, don’t take your ex at his word when he says that he’s not in love with you anymore. Any number of things could be going on in his mind. Being “in love” comes….it goes…it waxes….in wanes. Both parties in a relationship have to work on staying in love.

    Here’s the thing….if my ex hung out with me for 3 hours, and more significantly, kissed me so tenderly several months after our breakup, it indicates to me that he still has strong feelings for me. Whether we get back together or not isn’t the issue. You said in your post that his words tore you apart…well….I say, give it some time….don’t contact him at all….let him get his bearings….calm down a bit.

    I’ll bet you 10 to 1 that he still has very strong feelings for you. Again, this has nothing to do with whether you’ll get back together or not. After my boy kissed me, I knew that he still had strong feelings for me. It was very healing, and has been helping me move on. Though I do miss him still, I know that he still harbors feelings for me. So, please hang in there Tracy. I SO empathize with you. Words can cut like a knife. I don’t think it would be a bad idea to contact him after a few weeks of no-contact. Ask to see him and talk about good memories. Look hot and fabulous….smile….have fun….be brief if you want to mention something about the relationship….and whatever you do…..BE RESPECTFUL….pretend you’re talking to your boss!!

    Be professional….no melodrama. I know it’s a pipe dream now, but I guarantee you that the pain will subside even though you may continue to harbor affection for him in your heart. Please stay encouraged. My heart aches alongside yours :o( Mimi

  14. Sorry for the delay in getting back to you on this. I guess I have a few comments from you to reply to.

    Will do so one-by one…

    >> ”this can’t be real”…

    Oh yes I know that well. I’ve been there and suspect everyone here has too. That disbelief.

    I do feel as though you’re thinking of it all wrong (understandably so)…

    But I believe he meant what he said when he said. He did feel he loved you when he said it for all those years. I don’t think he LIED or anything. I thought I’ve loved many people in my life but eventually I felt what was “TRUE love” and to be honest with you I’ve only had that ONE time. I loved, on some levels, the other guys but with the one gentleman in question – it was different. It felt mutual. It felt pretty unconditional. We respected each other and were kind to one another. We were “in love” – I believe (at least I was)

    Now, when it came to the end, I was dumped from a pretty great height (for his work colleague) but it doesn’t take away from the relationship as it stood. Not to me in my mind (am years on down the road).

    This guy no doubt loved and cared for you on some level and likely probably always will.

    If it is real love you felt for him – that won’t change either. Regardless of where he is and who he is with.

    It’s just that around here 9 x out of 10 – it’s not real love people speak of. It’s conditional love “I will love you as long as you love me back” or “I love you as long as you behave the way I think you should or say what I think you should”.

    Real love is not like that – it keeps on loving regardless.

    I will always love on some level that one gentleman I spoke of – even though we’ve not spoken in more than a dozen years.

    This goes for the other guys. The last one I was involved with I still love and we’ve not spoken in quite some time. But I wish him and hope he is happy. I send him “love” every now and again.

    It’s just that we all have different interpretations of “LOVE” really. How you define it may not be how he does.

    I hope you work toward forgiving him for any perceived wrongs you think he’s done and focus on the gratitude that you even had a relationship for 4 years! Presumably some great times, great sex, nice meals, lots of fun.

    No one said it would last forever. But again you may have had more than some people EVER get in their lives.

    The “nightmare of pain” does fade. I am LIVING PROOF of that. It really does. Accepting. Healing. Forgiving. It’s all part of the process. x

  15. >> Thank you so much Thea-you’re a bit of a saviour in people’s time of need.

    You’re welcome and thanks for the gratitude.

    I am sorry you’re going through this recent pain.

    I think as I probably said in the blog one of the reasons people DON’T reply is that they just don’t know what to say. So instead of making an attempt – they say nothing. It doesn’t mean s/he didn’t care or doesn’t miss you – but I guess in the recent case they’ve moved on to someone new and so that is taking up all their energies. You know?

    You’re gonna be OK it’s a bit raw but it’s a chance to learn a lot about yourself and your actions. You can vow to be more open / expressive in the future while in the relationship :)

    Do take care m’dear x

  16. >> When ever I feel that suffering coming on…I just sit on your site and read other people’s stories and your comments to them. It makes me feel not quite so alone…and I get insight from things you say. I thank God for this site…

    Good to hear it’s proving helpful reading all the stories and comments. I think I saw one from someone today direct at you (not gotten there yet as am working from oldest to newest)…

    >> I have had some good days…or rather moments…where I have felt no pain…and felt hopeful…but it just doesn’t last.

    Par for the course, sugar. It ebbs and flows, no doubt.

    Well honey in terms of what he said – “I’m not in love with you anymore” – yes it stings but he was honest, and that was a really hard thing to do. Maybe he should have cushioned the blow – sure.

    Frankly one thing I’ve learned is that it doesn’t really matter how he did it or what he said to end it. You would have PAIN no matter what method or what words. You really would.

    People get hung up on the delivery – but really it doesn’t change a thing. You need to give up wishing for a better ending. It ended. And you fixating on how / what / whatever – is arguing with reality.

    Get to the point you’re mentally thanking him for his honesty. He spoke his truth. Thank him for freeing you up to find someone who IS in love with you. Who will love you. Better that he did end it rather than continue on with you NOT loving you – possibly cheating on you.

    There is good here but as long as you fixate on the bad you can’t see it.

    Find the good. Keep digging. It’s there. I know it hurts. I’ve said before I went through this too. My relationship was about the same length. I thought I’d be with that guy til the end of my days (or his) but life had a different plan for me. I guess it does you too. :)

    Take care x

  17. Dear Mimi…thank you SO MUCH for reaching out to me and telling me your story…and for empathizing with my pain. That was very kind of you…and I appreciate it greatly. I have been doing exactly what you said. It’s been 3 weeks since it happened…and I have made no contact…nor have I responded to his letter. I am wayyyy too delicate right now to do so. I could never fake (at this point) that I am okay…and my heart can not bare to take the chance of hearing another hurtful word. By the time I would be able to handle speaking to him…I probably won’t want to. I also agree that his words of “I’m not in love with you anymore” may have come from a temporary state of frustration with our situation. I do know he still loves me…or at least cares about me…but for now…he does not love me enough to want to be with me. That much is clear. I realized today…that I really have to pull myself together…and I am trying with all my might. But the pain seems to have a life of it’s own…despite my desire to banish it. Intellectually I can talk my way out of this…but my body seems to have a reaction of it’s own. I feel quite sick very often. I hope we both go on to find the right love for us…we both deserve to be loved the way…(as Thea perfectly put it) …unquestionably! Thanks again…and maybe I will talk to you sometime down the road…xxoo…Tracy

  18. Thea…thank you for your response. I do agree that I have loved some men in my life more then others (even though I thought I loved them all at the time)….but I would classify this past relationship as “true love”…at least on my end. I know I will always love him no matter how much time passes. But right now…I am disgusted by how badly he hurt me. I know you say it would have hurt no matter how he went about the break up….but…to know that he put “no thought” into my well being with his choice of action…well…that made it twice as devastating. In addition to saying “he was not in love”…he hurled a bunch of other hurtful words at me too. When you care about someone…you try to soften the blow. Can’t help but feel that the way he went about it was extremely cruel. I can’t feel gratitude toward him right now or for the time we spent together…but maybe someday I will. I don’t know.
    You truly are living proof that even the most devastating break up can be overcome. Your story is a rough one…and it gives me hope.
    Like you…I thought I would spend the remainder of my days with him. So the pain is not just due to the loss of him…but also to the loss of my dream of a life with him. He started out as such a wonderful boyfriend….a dream come true. But none of the traits that I fell in love with exist in him today. Thanks for your help and your insight. I will keep on doing the best I can. I still have dreams…and God Willing…I will continue to work toward them. Much appreciation…

    One final word…The way I am trying to cope with this now…is to remind myself of all the ways in which he constantly hurt me…even BEFORE he fell out of love with me. I am giving myself a reality check on the way he was. Aside from the first year and a half…I have loved him in spite of him…not because of him. If I really look at the situation with out my heart involved…I am really losing nothing but a non stop hurting machine. And I know that no matter how much this is killing me now…the farther away I get…the more I will realize that he was never worthy of me. I will always love him…why I can not explain…but Lord knows…he did not treat me right. I def deserve better.

  19. Mimi

    Thanks for taking the time to post on here for Tracy. It’s nice to have other people’s input on here now and again :)

    I agree too – he may not have the same feelings as he used to but doesn’t mean he doesn’t still love / care still. Just as your guy does.

    You’re in pain Mimi but you’re sounding pretty good at this point. You’ve got a good attitude about it all I can tell.

    Hope you’re doing great now – in spite of the heartache! x

  20. Thank you for your response Thea…you’re very kind :o) I do think it’s important to let them go….as hard as it is….as counter-intuitive as it is – it has to be done. It’s amazing how liberating it is to finally let him go. I certainly feel sad – very sad – but I’m also starting to feel peaceful about the whole thing. I am definitely not ready to date another guy right now because it would mean that I’d really have to let him go….and that makes my heart ache so badly. I don’t understand how a man who spent so much time with me, who was so intimately involved in my life (as I was in his) could just walk away without the slightest problem. We shared so much – we loved each other so much – I was always careful to be respectful and kind. From my perspective, we really didn’t have any significant issues, and yet he ran scared. It’s inexplicable. I guess that’s why I’m so devasted. We were talking about marriage and buying a house together….and then the bottom fell out. I felt sick to my stomach. Good grief!! I am much better now, but I still can’t come to terms with how a man could just up and leave when there’s no tangible problem. I always gave him his space, was respectful, treated him like a friend, made myself vulnerable by sharing my fears, dreams, etc., but he NEVER talked to me about anything that would make him look weak….he was always elusive….never communicated anything….good, bad, or otherwise. Anyway….I’m sure it was for the best. I know that I’ll look back on this and be grateful that it ended. Again Thea, thank you for this blog. It really helps to connect with people who can understand. I am sorry for all the pain you’ve been through as well. Thank you for your encouragement. Mimi.

  21. Dear Tracy….

    I hope you’re feeling better today. It’s been 4 months since Scott and I broke up, but I can report to you that, instead of feeling despondent (as I did at first), a new “me” is emerging from the ashes. It’s bitter-sweet. I still long for him and miss him like crazy….but I have learned SO much in the past several months…and I’m starting enjoy life again. Tracy, just know that you will be fine again – promise. All the best to you….:o) Mimi.

  22. Hi Mimi….I am doing a little better…have been working real hard at trying to be less upset. I also received another phone call from him the other day. He left a message on my cell phone…but I have not listened to the message out of fear. Anything short of him saying…”I love you and I miss you”…is just going to add to my pain….so I am staying away from it. I am happy for you that you are doing well. I hope to follow in your footsteps…xo…ALL BEST…Tracy

  23. Hi Tracy, I can understand why you don’t want to listen to his voicemail….you’re trying to protect yourself from more pain. He’s probably very conflicted….trying to deal with all the emotions that are emerging. This is a very trying time for both of you – especially for you. Hang in there Tracy. In my opinion, you’re doing the right thing by not contacting him just yet. I think it’s too soon. I made the mistake of responding to my guy because I thought the break up was entirely my fault. I apologized up a storm – huge mistake on my part. I should’ve waited until I calmed down – had better perspective. I paniced. As it turns out, a lot of it was his fault. In one of your previous posts you said that you loved him DESPITE his faults – HEAR! HEAR! Me too!! That’s why I was so devastated when he broke up with me. That’s real LOVE – when you choose to stay despite their fauts. You invest. It’s a kick in the teeth when you put all that effort into the relationship and they don’t. I did explain that to him in a long email. I told him (very respectfully) that I loved him DESPITE his faults – that though his faults made me sick to my stomach and made me want to run for the hills, I stuck it out. What I felt for him after deciding to commit myself to the relationship was a deep unwavering affection – real LOVE. I couldn’t believe that he didn’t do the same for me. That’s what hurt me the most, that after two years of fighting to overcome my own desire to “abandon ship”, he didn’t reciprocate. Reading your experience reminds me so much of my own. My brother told me that I’m the one who is capable of being in a commited relationship – he’s not. The break up is a poor reflection of him, but a good one of me. I would argue the same thing for you Tracy. YOU were willing to stick it out – no matter what. Good for you. Let’s see what transpires now. Hold your head up high and know that you’ve got the chops to be in a commited relationship. I hope you’re surrounded by supportive people. All the best to you – Mimi.

  24. omg Mimi !! Your email is so RIGHT ON. That is exactly how I feel ! So many times…he’d anger me enough…that I would start to pull away…thinking that (even though I did not want to)…I should end the relationship. But he’d always call and call and call and call…till I would finally give in…talk to him…and end up right back in the saddle! I never gave up on him….cause I loved him so much. He even said to me (about 9 months ago)…to “never leave him…that he’d be half a man without me”. Then WHAMO…he turns around and leaves me??? omg…smack in the face. You sound like one awesome person…and I truly believe that your ex lost someon really special !! I think both our ex’s were commitment phobes. I am feeling sad again tonight…I hate this whole thing so much ! I am sure you have gone thru and still go thru the same. It sucks ! Plain and simple. I really do not have alot of support Mimi…I have not even told alot of people what’s going on. Too many bad experiences in the past. People are really just to busy to be there. I know I have what it takes to be in a commited relationship…because that is what I truly want. The problem is finding another person who wants the same…and someone that you truly love…ughhh…not easy. All I have left is my dignity as far as not talking to him at all. As much as it hurts…I am giving him what he asked for. I am still in shock…still really can not believe this could possibly be true !! I hate it Mimi…I just just hate it. All this unnescessary pain to deal with when we could have just had a happy life together ! arghhhhhh….lol…thanks for talking to me Mimi…it is really nice to have someone who understands !

  25. Hi Tracy….ugh!!! I HEAR YOU LOUD AND CLEAR!! Oh my goodness!! It’s as if I’m looking in the mirror! You sound exactly like me. You’re so right when you say that our men could have had it so good….so, so, so good. They are the ones who are complicating things – not us. That’s one of the things that hurts so much. Also, you say that you’re so afraid to go back out there again! Ditto!! Me too…so terrified! First of all, I’m still so enamoured by Scott that no one else will do. Second, I am so scared of getting close to yet another guy and having the same thing happen again. I’m in a rut. The best thing we both can do is to be very careful the next time around. First of all. We both need to write a list of all our assets. It sounds like we’re both mature, confident, independent women. I’m sure you’ve got a lot of other fantastic attributes – list them on a piece of paper and look at them EVERY DAY (I need to do it too!). Then we both need to list all the red flags that we observed but chose to ignore in our men. Then, we need to say that we truly are capable of having a lasting and meaningful relationship. Then (and here’s a very challenging one) we have to be VERY careful when we start dating another guy. Here’s my new rule of thumb: Until or unless he has made a commitment, I REFUSE to give my heart to him! END OF STORY!! I will not make an emotional investment, nor will I respect him until I am absolutely convinced that he’s in it for the long haul! We have to be strong. I will not suffer this kind of agony ever again! I don’t know if you’d take him back or not, but if you do, he would have to be a CHANGED man. I personally won’t take Scott back unless he proposes. He’s known me long enough. He’s just scared. Well….in the words of his own mother: MAN UP!!! His entire family is so mad at him. He’s done this to so many girls. I’m so glad that they’re so supportive of me.

    I also know EXACTLY how you feel when you say that no one is being supportive – that everyone is too busy – same thing has been happening to me. My mom and Scott’s mom have really been there to pick up the pieces, but my friends have all but vanished. They can’t handle my pain.

    I’m here for you Tracy. It’s amazing how our experiences are so unbelievably similar.

    You DO deserve to be treated better than that – so do I. I pulled out all the stops to make the relationship work – even after it was over. But now I am moving on. Onwards and Upwards. Though I still ache for him, I need to move on.

    Thank you for the compliments….you’re too kind!! YES….WE BOTH ARE TOO GOOD FOR THEM!!! Though we’re the ones who feel the loss, they’re the ones who have lost out I’m afraid. OH WELL. Be sure that one day, they’ll feel it….when it’s too late.

    Please take care of yourself Tracy, and know that I’ll be here to support you.

    Mimi

  26. Thanks so much for your support Mimi…xo…I just hope Thea does not mind us hijacking her site. (If you do Thea…please let us know).
    As far as going back out to date…that will probably not happen for me any time soon. I have alot of healing to do. All your suggestions about being more careful next time are great….but I really had no doubts “this time” about my ex’s love for me at all ! SO…if he could leave me…anybody can.
    I think even more important then writing a list of our best assets… is your suggestion to write all the red flags about our ex’s that we ignored. We need to think about why we did not stop the madness when we should have. That is probably the most important lesson for the next time. We let our love for them get in the way of making wise decisions . And now we are paying the price. I also do not want to suffer this agony ever again. I wish there was a guarantee…but there is not.
    I doubt I will be taking my ex back…as he has made no effort to show me he even wants me back ! Even if he did…I would pray to God that I would not go back to him…cause I know the same thing will just happen all over again. I don’t think they ever really change. Maybe in the beginning of the reunion they would be on their best behavior…but with time…I am sure their same prior tendencies will rear their ugly head. Your case may be different…as your man is just probably running scared from marriage. So if he ever decides he does want to marry…maybe you guys would have another chance. I don’t know. But it is definitely best for neither one of us to wait around on them. I think that is the worst thing we could do. And yes…I have seen friends vanish every time there is a situation that requires long term loyal support. It sucks and just makes ya feel worse which is why I am not even talking about this to anyone. I am glad you have some support from both moms at least. It is so important.
    I still have not listened to his phone message…nor has he tried to call me again. I can’t help but feel that his calls are just him doing what he thinks is “his duty” to not look like the bad guy. If he had any regrets about what he did…I think he would be calling me constantly until he got ahold of me. So…I just have to keep on living with this reality that I hate so much.
    I know you still have alot of pain Mimi….but how long did it take you to get past the really devastating part? It has been almost a month for me….and I am still suffering greatly.
    Hope to hear from you….Tracy

  27. Dear Tracy,

    I too hope that Thea doesn’t mind that we’ve hijacked her site :o) Well, it took me about 3 months to stabalize. But I think you’re doing a lot better than me because I continued to HOPE that we’d get back together – I guess I was in denial that it was over. You are way ahead of where I was. I genuinely thought the breakup was my fault – HUGE mistake on my part. Then we met a month ago (after a 3 month hiatus). Like I mentioned in one of my previous posts, he was amazing – it was as if no time had lapsed, and we were the same couple we used to be. We hung out for 3 hours. He was very kind and attentive…bought me tea and cake (I had a bad cold). Then we went for a walk. Finally, he walked me to my car and kissed me (on the mouth) goodbye. I asked him to reconsider getting back together, and he said that he would. It’s been a month (this Saturday) since, and I haven’t heard a thing. All I can say is that he’s a confused man who doesn’t know what he wants. BUT, the meeting helped me a lot. I knew that he still had feelings for me. Afterall, why would a man hang out with his ex for 3 hours, treat her like a queen and then give her a passionate kiss? I wouldn’t – would you? If I was over someone, I wouldn’t touch them with a ten foot pole, let alone spend 3 hours with them and then kiss them.

    I highly doubt that we’ll get back together again, let alone get married. That’s okay.

    I know exactly how you feel about dating another man. I feel the same way – I’m still too hurt to go out there again, and I continue to harbor a lot of affection for Scott. I can’t even conceive of being attracted to another guy. That said, I’m not going to give him that much control – that’s the key.

    I know what you mean when you say that a certain amount of risk is involved in dating. But I think you can reduce it by reminding yourself of how valuable you are – YOU are the treasure. You have to believe that first. That has to be your attitude. If you consider yourself a valuable asset, YOU will be the one to decide whether he’s right for you or not, or to call him out on his bad behavior. It’s all about how much you value yourself. Again Tracy, YOU ARE THE TREASURE – any man should be HONORED to commit to you. The reason why you and I “put up” with their garbage is because we didn’t consider ourselves as highly valuable, and deserving of respect and love. THAT’S THE KEY. You and I have to BELIEVE that we are highly valuable. Does that make sense? And for us to not date ever again amounts to giving these guys WAY too much power!!! We have a dream, and we’re going to get it!!! BELIEVE IT TRACY!!! We will no longer tolerate bad behavior. We will project confidence, and will NOT take anything less than a man who will treat us like a queen!! Otherwise, they’re out!!! That’s what I think we were afraid of….kicking them to the curb when they behaved badly. I think you’re doing the right thing by not contacting him – good for you.

    I know first hand how much pain you’re in, but believe me when I say to you that you’ll bounce back. Make sure you stay focused on how valuable you are for right now. This excercise will eventually give you your power back. I’ve written a list of everything God has given me – all my positive attributes – I’m not overdoing it of course – I am being honest.

    Tracy, I promise you….YOU WILL RECOVER….YOU WILL BE STRONGER….YOU WILL MEET AN AWESOME GUY…..

    Mimi :o)

    I encourage you to talk to your family members about this – it really will help you get a more objective perspective in the long run. Right now, nothing seems to help – but I promise you, you will bounce back – and you’ll be the stronger for it.

    Just like you, my dream was to be married to a wonderful man. And just like you, I really thought Scott was that guy.

  28. Hi Mimi…
    It is always great to find an email from you ! But anytime you decide you do not want to talk about this anymore…I will totally understand and respect that. I know you are trying to move on…and I do not want my struggle to keep bringing up pain for you. You do not have to respond to me unless you are truly okay with it.

    I really am not that much ahead of you Mimi….because “my heart” does still hope…even though “my head” says NO WAY will I ever let this slide…should he suddenly change his mind. I am pretty convinced he is not going to change his mind anyway. Once someone can say that to you (the dreaded words)…and then proceed to live without you for this long…I think it’s pretty much a done deal.

    My biggest obstacle seems to be digesting that he is not “in love” with me anymore and does not want to be with me. For my mind and heart…that thought is like trying to fit a round peg into a square hole ! It just dosen’t fit !! And yet it is !! The day I can wrap my head around that…will be a big step. We thought for soooo long that they were “the guy” we’d be with forever…(I was sure of it)…that it feels next to impossible to suddenly have to accept that they are not. Just seems soooo wrong. I can not say that enough !

    I feel very much the way you do. Every guy after this is going to be compared to the way I felt about my ex. And that is gonna suck. This all takes time…feelings take time to shift…and I am sooo not into the process and yet it has been dumped on my lap. What I wouldn’t do to fast forward 5 years…so that I would not have to feel any of this ! Imagine that…that I am in so much pain…I would actually wish away 5 years of my precious life…just to not have to suffer this. Terrible !

    I am wondering why you initially thought the break up was all your fault. I do not feel that way. Not that I was perfect…but I know I loved him with everything I had…so my concious is clear. It really IS amazing how your ex spent that time with you…was as warm as ever…showed you so much affection…and yet still went on his merry way afterwards. I can not figure them out. I could actually see my ex doing the same thing if I was to contact him. I think maybe…they still love/care about us…as people…as friends…but the romantic aspect is gone? My ex would probably do anything I asked of him right now…but that does not mean he would want the relationship back. Like I said before…it is next to impossible to accept that their love has faded when ours is still so strong. That is the nightmare of all of this.

    I honestly did think I was a treasure ! But apparently…and eventually…he did not. I always thought I held myself in high regard…I have always loved who I am. And I ALWAYS called him out on his bad behavior…which is why our relationship was so rocky. BUT…I kept going back to him…because I loved him so much…I needed him…and I wanted him…and I was a sucker for his apologies. Talk about a HUGE mistake. I should have been stronger…and wiser…and more respectful of myself. I tend to have too kind of a heart and it gets me into alot of trouble. He did treat me very much like a queen for the first 2 years. Then little by little…that treatment started to fade…until I was left with nothing.

    I do still have my dreams Mimi…and I will never give up on them. I just wish I could have my joy back so that I could make the most of each day instead of wasting energy fighting off this pain. I am so resentful of it.

    I wish so much the best for both of us ! With or with out men ! And I still say your ex is an ASS for giving up someone as wonderful as YOU. I think that deep down…THEY are the ones who do not feel valuable. Because they do not know how to handle someone really loving them. It’s as if they feel they do not deserve it …so they have to ruin it…or run from it ! arghhhh…frustrating creatures ! lol

    Anyway…with that said…THANK YOU so much…xo

  29. Dear Tracy,

    Don’t worry….I’ll support you as long as you need me to. I know too well how much pain you’re in. I wish I had an understanding person in my camp when I was struggling….but my friends were nasty and thought that I was overreacting – that’s because most of them are married and they’ve forgotten how horrible a break up feels. They’re so out of touch. It’s ok – what you’re experiencing is very natural – very human. My best friend told me to go on anti-depressants – NO WAY!!! By the way, she is no longer my friend – she stopped calling me because I refused to go on anti-depressants! Can you believe it??!! She just couldn’t handle the pain I was in. She even called me a “brat!” So, I’m here for you, and I completely understand what you’re going through.

    Yes, it is absolutely UNBELIEVABLE that our guys can walk away and be fine. A lot of it has to do with the fact that guys bottle their emotions up – they don’t talk about them. What you and I are doing is healthy – talking it out – grieving. I can guarantee you that they are struggling too – but not as much as we are.

    It’s obvious to me that your guy doesn’t appreciate being called out when he behaves badly. I know mine didn’t. I was always very respectful when I did call him out – very adult. I didn’t make a fuss, didn’t raise my voice – just said things like “I’d really like it if you could be on time.” He was ALWAYS late. So, I did whatever I could to make the relationship work. I think one of the major reasons we’re hurting so much is because we put SO MUCH effort into making our relationships work, and we’re stunned that they didn’t – and to make matters worse, they dumped us. It’s as if they are punishing us for our hard work!! WHAT??!! I think that’s why we’re upset. We invested too much. What we should have done is walk away when things started to get bad. We should’ve held our heads up high and said, “OK…I’m done here.” But, we got sucked back in.

    Thank you for your compliments – I finally realized that it wasn’t my fault, thanks to his mom and mine. Yes, like you, I made my share of mistakes, but I was always willing to own them and to change.

    Tracy, you must take your time in the healing process. If you want to be alone right now, then be alone. If you want to cry, cry. Do whatever you’re comfortable doing.

    The first month for me was utter hell. I barely moved out of the house. I would go to the local grocery store and get food, but that was about it. If my healing process is any indication to you, you will be better in a month from now, and better still in a couple of months. It will not take 5 years!! NO WAY!! In a year from now you’ll be fine, and I’ll bet you’ll look back and say “what was I thinking??!!” Also know that, once the pain is gone, you’ll be stronger for it. Your next relationship (whenever it happens) will be all the better for it. What I’ve been doing, as hard as it is, is learning from my mistakes (let’s face it, we both made them). I want to make sure I don’t repeat the same stuff in the next one. For me, I have vowed that I’ll never compromise my core values and principles for a man. If they don’t like it, they can walk – but I will not let my guard down ever again. I lost a lot of power when I compromised. The right man will not only share my principles, but will uphold and respect them. NO MORE COMPROMISES – I made A LOT of compromises for him….I think that’s why he lost respect for me. We think that because we give in to their whims, we are being accomodating or kind….NO!!!

    As to whether they have romantic feelings for us – I believe that they do. But I think they value their freedom more than they value a stable and healthy relationship.

    I am SO glad that your conscience is clear – that you did nothing cataclysmically wrong – good for you. That’s why I think you’re a step ahead of me. You’re a lot stronger than I was. I beat myself up so bad, doing the “coulda-woulda-shoulda’s.” I drove myself nuts!! You, on the other hand, refuse to give in to his garbage.

    Tracy, I am here….don’t worry….give yourself permission to be were you are right now….grieve. You’ve lost a relationship that you invested in – you have every right to be sad because you lost a very big piece of your self-identity.

    Try to get some rest too. I couldn’t have made it had I not slept a lot.

    Again….I am here for you Tracy :o)

    Mimi

  30. Hi Mimi….
    I had a half way decent day today…but I feel that sick feeling coming over me again….that KNOT…that sadness…and the horrifying disbelief. It is so strange how sometimes I can be okay for a bit…and then suddenly crash into such pain and heartache…which usually lasts longer then the good spells. Anyway…thanks so much for talking to me.

    I am not surprised by your friends reactions…”anti depressant comment” and all ! I have been thru alot of that in my life with people whenever something would go horribly wrong in my life. People made me feel so much worse…with their lack of understanding and stupid comments. Thus my decision to keep quite this time. You are lucky you have a supportive mom. My mom is not good like that. I have one sister who knows the truth…but she is so swamp busy with her own problems…she really can’t be there for me. But she is kind at least…when I do talk to her about it.

    You are right…my guy did not like it when I called him out on stuff and most of the time he didn’t even think he did anything wrong !
    But trust me when I say…he definitely did ! I have a high standard of treatment that I expect…so I’d always let him know whenever he was treating me less then I deserved or doing something hurtful. He would apologize…but then just continued to do the same…which is why I should have left him…but didn’t. So ultimately…I did end up compromising my standards.

    I really think you are so right about them wanting their freedom more then a relationship. I think that is what it really boils down to.
    Relationships require some responsibility…and they don’t want any.

    For me…it is not so much the “effort” I put into the relationship that hurts so much…it is more the “belief” that I had invested in him and in the relationship. I never in a million years thought he would ever leave me…or would ever be capable of not being in love with me anymore. The fact that the unthinkable has happened…is what has crushed me. I realized today…that what I believed in my head…was on my end and not nescessarily on his…although I thought it was. He did many things to support my belief…but also many things that I can think of now…that would NOT support that belief. But I was too blind to see…or saw sometimes…but brushed it off as one of his moods.

    Your first month sounds incredibly rough !! I have been able to function just a bit more then that…but only because I HAVE to. But sometimes I only make it through half a day before I start to turn into a complete useless sick wreck.

    I may look back one day and say “what was I thinking” but I can not ever imagine myself not still loving him. I hope I am wrong…I reallllly do ! Cause he does not deserve for me to love him anymore…and it kills me that I still do.

    You really have learned alot…and I believe you when you say the next guy will not be getting away with any shit. That is the way it should be…but once you are in love it gets so much harder to keep that foot down.

    I finally listened to his phone message. It kept bugging me that it was there…and I had other messages…so I finally heard it. He did not sound that great…he said he “was calling to see how I was holding up…he hopes I am doing well (yeah right..as if)…and hopefully we will talk soon”.
    What does he possibly think I have to talk to him about? That message was pretty much the same thing he would say thru out our entire relationship whenever we had a spat. Only this time…I know it means absoloutely nothing. He left that message a week ago…and has not called me since…so doubtful that he is really that interested in talking to me. He is just doing his duty with that message…that’s all.

    I know you say this gets better…and you are certainly living proof of that…but when you are in it…it is so hard to believe. I am trying like hell though. But when that pain and devastation comes over me…it is SO intense…SO horrible….as you well know.

    Today I think I missed him more then any other day so far. I kept having memories…the good ones…and I felt such longing for him. So sad…of course it made me cry…but I pushed on and reminded myself not to think of those things. I try to think about the bad stuff most of the time…to help me cope with the loss. And I try to keep myself busy and distracted. That seems to be the only way to not dwell on it constantly.

    All I can do right now…is live one day at a time…and hope that I end up with more good moments then bad. You are right about the sleep…I have been doing alot of that…especially after a break down. I have to go to sleep and then get up and try again to do better.

    I hate to sound like a broken record…but I wish so much this was not happening. I wish that more then anything.

    You are so kind to be there for me Mimi…you are like a little gift from God….xo…Sincerely Tracy

  31. I have to reiterate one thing you said in your last email that keeps striking me today….”Yes, it is absolutely UNBELIEVABLE that our guys can walk and be just fine”.
    I keep thinking to myself….HOLY CHIT…he has left my life as if I had never existed. Mind Blowing.
    Other then that…I am hanging in there. I think I am getting just a wee bit stronger.
    Hope all is well…xo

  32. UPDATE:

    HOLY CHIT AGAIN….lol…a few minutes after I wrote my last comment…I saw that he tried to call me ! How ironic ! ok…so maybe he has not completely forgotten about me…BUT….I am sure it means nothing.

  33. Tracy have you checked emails only you never replied to the one I wrote to you and Mimi last week? Suggesting you be off line break up buddies?

    In any event I saw that comment the other day and it of course sounded familiar – I hear it a lot but frankly they DO NOT forget about us. They may be DISTRACTED by budding new romances, new friends, new jobs, whatever – but it just SEEMS like it’s “out of sight out of mind” it’s not. Or at least it won’t be for long.

    He’s NOT forgotten about you. There will be songs, shows, places, cars, or whatever that reminds him of you – even if he’s playing with a new toy (can’t remember if he has moved on or not?)

    It’s honestly one of dumpees most common misconceptions or assumptions. Really it is not the case, it only FEELS like it is!

    You wait…

    Wonder what he wanted when he rang!

  34. Hi Thea !! No….I never saw a comment from you suggesting Mimi and I go off site. SO SORRY ! I was in fact going to ask Mimi if she has a facebook account or email that we could use. I also think it is time to take this off site. I will wait for Mimi to respond to me. I appreciate you allowing us to talk this long ! She has been a wonderful support to me.
    I do not know what he wanted when he rang. I have not listened to the message yet. I always get unnerved to do so as I am very fragile when it comes to anything he may say. But you are right….there will be alot of reminders for him…as there are for me.
    Let’s hope all ends well…in terms of me becoming stronger…
    Thanks again Thea for this site !! And God Bless all the future dumpees…may we ALL go on to bigger and better and more wonderful loves and lives !! xxoo

  35. Well Thea…I listened to his phone message…and now I wish I hadn’t. THIS is why I fear them…cause I went from feeling fairly strong to being in a very painful state after hearing it. It was so generic…so meaningless…it broke my heart all over again ! All he said was that “he hopes I’m doing better” … that’s it ! Over a month apart…and that was all he felt to say! Devastating !! Just another confirmation that he really meant what he said when he said he was not in love with me anymore and that our relationship is done. GOD I WISH I HAD NEVER LISTENED TO THAT MESSAGE….this is why I can no longer expose myself to him. I wish I could change my cell phone number…since that is the only phone he still has access to. But I can’t. Feeling like I have to start all over again now…with a new knife in my heart :(

  36. Breathe

    You’re not any further back than you were yesterday or day before – you only THINK you are.

    If you get a GRIP on your thoughts you really will start to feel better.

    >> GOD I WISH I HAD NEVER LISTENED TO THAT MESSAGE

    Really? I mean really? I mean you’d rather be in total denial? Limbo?

    I see his calling as kind. It shows he cares for you. Maybe not in the way YOU want him to but just like you he is doing the best he can with the skills / tools he’s got. No better or worse than any of us.

    You are experiencing a set back and that is all. But this little call and his candor can actually cause you to heal faster because he’s cut that rope.

    It’s time to buck up, face it and accept and move on.

    You CAN expose yourself to him. It hurts yes but you’re surviving.

    You’ll keep on doing so.

    I wrote to you and Mimi both so somewhere you will have an email from me with her CC’d. If you’re receiving my alerts there is no real reason you shouldn’t have gotten the email direct from me?!

    Be good if you can be some break up buddies and maybe start to help some other people here on the blog!

    Cheers – bed time!

    PS You’re doing fine. Repeat after me “I can handle it”. And you are!

  37. Hi Thea…thanks so much for your response.
    Let me just explain. It is certainly not that I want to stay in denial…(that would only prolong the grieving and healing process). It is that I do not want to keep RE-injuring myself as I am trying to heal. It was bad enough I had to hear it once…but to hear it over and over and over again in his phone messages…NO THANKS ! It hurts tooooo much. I already got the point…he’s done with me. I don’t need to keep kicking up the pain by listening to him. I understand he is trying to be kind. I get that. But HE does not understand just how badly he has hurt me! I do not owe him a response…or even to listen to what he has to say. I only owe myself whatever I need to be okay. His phone calls are to ease his guilt….but….they hurt me. So no…I will most definitely NOT be exposing myself to him. It is up to me to protect myself now…and that is what I plan to do. I will never interact with him until and if there will be NO pain involved for me. I have to do what’s best for me. He will not hear from me…see me…or know anything about me. HE made that choice…not me.
    With that said…I would love to help others…and will check the site periodically to see if I can lend a heart and a hand to anyone going through this most horrible experience.
    I am handling it…you are right…but it is not easy…it is torment. But I will survive…and God willing…I will THRIVE ! …xo !

  38. p.s.s. It’s about a half hour later…and I have to say…your message is having a terrible affect on me. I have never had a stronger urge to call him up and cry my eyes out to him as I have tonight. Only I won’t…because what good would it do? I am trying so hard to keep myself together thru this daily pain…was feeling half way decent tonight (which is the best I usually get)…and now I feel devastated.
    Buck up, Accept, and Move on…and…”he has cut that rope”…was a little too more then I could handle to hear. I guess I was trying to accept it in little bites so as not to send myself totally over the deep end as I feel now.

  39. Well Tracy I am sorry my tough love set you back, not my intention of course. Not at all…

    But you’re creating the vast majority of your misery about this now – down to your thinking. It may not be the solution for you but a few years ago a friend turned me on to Byron Katie’s works and she’s revolutionized the way I think about things. I am forever grateful for it too.

    Even the words you use to vent on here I can see is actually CAUSING more pain. e.g. phrases like this: “with a new knife in my heart”

    Man the words and descriptions are traumatic. I realise you’re in pain of course I do…but constantly repeating things like this over and over in your head – averse to say “I can handle it” when you start stressing out – would make a difference.

    You’re hurt. You feel betrayed or whatever – that’s understandable when you lose a love but start talking to yourself like your best friend would or how you’d talk to your best friend.

    You will bounce back from this, if you want to. You will be happy again. You will love again – should you chose to do so. Heck maybe even with him, but who knows? All you need to do is heal from this to benefit from it, for yourself – in whatever way that is.

    IGNORE THIS BIT: :)
    As for the email – everyone who posts on this site HAS TO put in an email to post on here. If you send me an email to info at soyouvebeendumped dot com – I’ll forward on your address to Mimi who has written me back once or twice so I know hers is a valid email.

    By all means keep posting – I wasn’t stopping you guys from that – but it seemed you guys were bonding quite well (will forward on the email I sent last week) and it’s nice to be able to speak more privately and intimately. It wasn’t because I didn’t want you posting on here!

    If you had put in a valid email (the one here is a Yahoo address) – then you’d get notifications whenever I reply…Anyway hope your setback has past. I find that it helps to even say to myself “ok I feel shitty now but this is a setback and it will pass because everything does – the good and the less than good!

    I certainly never use knife in heart analogies anymore…or any super intense words.

    Words are very powerful and when we keep repeating things we make affirmations of them, so please be careful, and check out some Byron Katie on YouTube. She’s helped me more than anyone ever has done I think in terms of a mental shift. She’ll maybe help you too…?

    Take care. x

  40. Ha! One correction Thea…HE has caused the vast majority of the misery I am experiencing…I on the other hand…am just in charge of damage control…trying to survive what has happened.
    I do not repeat mean things to myself….most definitely not. I do quite the opposite on a daily basis. I do, however, express my true and painful emotions when I post on here. Otherwise…what would be the point of even coming on?
    Thank you for deleting my email address…I did not realize I would be putting my self in jeapardy when I did that…so I appreciate it. And thanks for the email…I did get it ! Don’t know why I did not receive anything prior.
    I have listened to some of Byron Katie…and although I appreciate the concept…and feel it is useful…it is some times hard for me to sugar lolipop up what has happened. With that said…it is always my goal to remind myself of what a wonderful person I am. How rare…how precious…my personality traits are. I am also focusing on switching things up now…making some changes that will hopefull make my life feel different…and not stay in the same rut.
    I have not heard from Mimi…I hope she is okay. Maybe all this was getting to her…which I would certainly understand.
    Praying for recovery….and thanks…Tracy

  41. You’re welcome to come on to vent anything at all hon. Of course you are.

    We’re just at different stages and with different thought processes.

    Also 12+ years of seeing this sort of emotion on the screen and 3 break ups of my own I do feel I’ve learned a thing or three about break ups. I don’t have the emotional thoughts as someone like you’re does so I can view it very differently now (not saying I didn’t feel / say ALL that you’re doing now when I went through mine)…Oh nelly.

    It’s often said that 80 or 90% of our thoughts are negative and habitual so I would assume you were like the reset of in terms of having some of those!

    It feels to me as though you take a lot of what I say defensively. You are certainly not the first to get irritated with my ways I can be sure you won’t be the last…but please know my hope for you (and everyone who comes on here) is to bounce back. To find a way to learn and grow from the experience and view it in the most positively light as humanly possible. EVENTUALLY.

    That’s it in a nutshell. My wish for everyone here…that Pain Into Gain thing – in whatever it may mean to you. You’re just going through the process – like everyone else is here. No more or less. I get it.

    While you had no say in how / when / where – the relationship ended, it has ended and now it’s up to you with what to do with that experience. So he’s no longer causing you pain in sense, just the thoughts about the situation are! Again, I realise this is not helping you now so for that I am sorry!

    You’re healing a little bit more every day…since you don’t want to “re-inure” yourself with respect to him, you might consider sending him a wee note saying “thanks for that call, but really it’s too hard to hear from you now, so please do not contact me. When I feel I can handle contact, I’ll be in touch”. In your own words of course….

    You’re doing grand. Just keep riding out the peaks and valleys. It’s all part of the process. Have a great weekend. x

  42. OH NELLY….lol….I appreciate that Thea ! Yes…it is true…when we are so fresh in it…and the pain is so great…it is only normal to go through all those painful thoughts…emotions…and words. The reason I have felt a bit defensive…is because it is very hard when a person you loved and TRUSTED…drops a painful bomb on you…and then someone tells you that you are causing your own pain. Especially when…I am working my hardest to endure it…control it…and minimize it. I have only been at this for one month after all…not a year. At the same time…I do realize you are in a totally different place…with so much experience under your belt…and so much healing completed. That is where I want to be for sure ! And I think for the first time today…I started to see things in a tiny bit of a different light. Is the pain over…probably not…but I am begining to get far enough away from the forest to see the trees. I am also finding…that with every emotional break down…(when those intense waves of pain strike)…that
    I am waking up the next day just a little bit stronger.
    I appreciate your suggestion to drop him a note…but believe it or not…I can not even do that right now. I will know when the time is right for me…and I won’t force anything before that. He did what was right for him…and now I have to do was is right for me. I am sure the day will come…it is just not now.
    I truly do plan to gain as much from this break up as I possibly can. It is for sure a motivater to start paying better attention to my life and where I would like to head. Today I was even thinking that I should view it as a new adventure…
    Well here’s hoping !! Think I’ll go cry now…(lol…just kidding…but maybe not…I never know what I will experience from one hour to the next !)….XO…Thanks Thea !

  43. Hi Thea. It’s been awhile…so I just thought I would update you. I finally…after 2 months of no contact…(and after receiving many phone messages and notes from my ex)….broke down and called him. Unfortunatly…I did so…on a day I was in in terrible pain…and broke my own rule. I was an emotional wreck on the phone…told him how much pain I was in…but regardless…he proceeded to tell me all the (many insulting) reasons why he did not want to be with me. He was again…very cruel.

    He still claims to love me…but not in love with me. Anyway…as much as I regret allowing him to see just how devastated I truly am…I on the other hand…am happy to finally have closure. That call removed any false hope or denial.

    Since then…I have continued to grieve….but now…I do so knowing that this is really the end. His messages and letters really kept me hanging on….but that is no longer the case. So I feel free now…free to finish riding out my emotions…and move on.

    I also realize that his cruel ways are not something I want in my life. He said so many unnecessary hurtful things and many half truths. He has many a warped perception that has more to do with his issues then with me.

    I take full responsibility for allowing the relationship to go on too long…long after he started being unkind. That aspect of it is totally my fault. During the conversation…he talked out of both sides of his mouth and contradicted himself almost constantly. He in many ways made no sense to me. So that’s that.

    Although I still grieve…I am allowing for that…rolling with it…and working thru this little by little. I have my better moments as well. My advice to anyone out there going through this…is to not add the extra burden of being mad at yourself for not getting over it quickly enough. You only grieve as deep as you loved…but I will be happy when I am no longer affected by this. I’m working on it…xo…best of luck to all…

  44. Tracy! Thanks for the update. I am sorry it didn’t go as well as you’d have hoped and that he chose to be cruel. I’ve had those kinds of exes too and thought it hurts in some ways it helps us move on even quicker when it is a harsh severing like that.

    Though you sounds down you sound resolved and good as well.

    He has his perception and you have yours. It’s the same for all of us. We have no control over how anyone else perceives us or our relationship or what have you.

    However your perceive me for instance is right – for you. You know? Someone else will perceive me differently. Heck I probably perceive me differently. As I always say “perspective is a mirror, not a fact”.

    So in my own opinion, and with no disrespect, his perceptions aren’t wrong – just different to yours. All you can do is perhaps take on board what he said (even the stuff you felt inaccurate) and weigh it up yourself or share it with friends and discuss it.

    I don’t really get offended by anything ANYONE says about me. As I’ve often said on here – whatever they say they’re right…but I also know I can find evidence the opposite is also true.

    When someone does share something with me I don’t like – it stings for a bit – but then I can go inside myself, see if I can find it, and more or less thank them for pointing that out to me! I adopt more of a “thank you for sharing that” type attitude rather than try to “defend” myself against it.

    Our EGOS hate hearing things like that though eh? We immediately switch to defensive mode, justify our actions or words, etc…

    I had a sitch with a woman a few months back. I barely knew her but I really liked her. I actually thought we would become fine friends. But we had very different expectations and given one slight misdemeanor which she took very personally she read me the riot act. It hurt me quite a bit to be honest, I discussed it with friends, I processed what she said. Accepted what I could from her viewing of the situation and wrote a chunk of it off too. She was right – from her standpoint. But only that. She made all kinds of accusations of how I must only want “shallow” friends or something. She’d been with me for a matter of hours, didn’t really know me, how could she know what sort of friends I am seeking?

    But people think they’re justified in labeling us, pointing out our faults (which again depend on the person), and criticizing us. And I guess that’s their perogative – we’ve no control over it – all we can do is grow and learn from it. You know?

    Maybe he was all wrong. Maybe he wasn’t. It doesn’t so much matter what HE thinks of you – it matters what YOU THINK OF YOU. You’re the one that has to live with you :)

    I say this as much to myself! I went through a little blip with a guy I’d met and it didn’t work out…and I often blame myself or make other guy’s opinions more valuable than my own. Or the other thing I do is I get so worried about some guy liking me and being bummed if he doesn’t that I don’t actually concentrate on whether or not I even like them.

    We’re all complex creatures. We are all fighting our own dragons on a daily basis. Me. You. Even your ex…

    So we gotta have empathy when we feel people are being “cruel” or not behaving the way we think they should (again I say this to myself!) :)

    We’re all works in progress. Glad to hear your update! {*.*}

  45. Hi Thea :) I was happy to see your response. I agree with so much of what you have said. His perception of me…is just that…his perception. Although I can see some of his points…and in alot of ways “get it”….the points are soooooooo one sided…leave out such important details and reasons for things…are not completely true…and in no way take into consideration his role in things.

    Also…in my humble opinion…alot of his issues with me are such “trivial” things…that in no way should get in the way of true love. So I just have to conclude that he did not love me enough to accept me with my imperfections. There are lots of things about him that were very hard to deal with…but they never caused me to not be in love with him anymore. And never would have.

    In general…I am not a person who is fond of people who choose to be cruel…when there are so many kinder options. I personally…would never go that route. If I had been the one to end things with him…I would have been careful not to make it harder on him then it had to be. The pain of a loss is hard enough…no need to make it worse by being hurtful. But that’s just me.

    You are right…as sad as I still can be…I am on a better road. His harsh words have helped me to see who I am really dealing with…and as much as I still love him and always will….his ways…are just not healthy for me. I wish it was not so….but it is.

    Whatever points he did make that were valid…I can and will take them into consideration. But at the same token…I am me…and I have to live authentically as me. I can not live according to what someone else thinks I “should” be. I have to be with someone who loves me just the way I am…give or take a few fair and reasonable tweakings here and there…lol. I always treated him well…showed him tons of love and appreciation…helped him in any way I could…adorrrrrred him…and all those important things. So I know I did my best.

    In reference to the woman who read you the riot act…I am sorry that happened. Even she could have taken a kinder approach. There are ways of telling people how you feel with out “totally” flipping out on them. Many times…things can be “just” a misunderstanding. I apologize for being so hypersensitive to some of your responses. I was REALLY hurting at the time. I know you understand.

    It does only matter what “I” think of me. Thank goodness I have a strong foundation of healthy love for myself…or my ex’s actions and words would have completely destroyed my self esteem.

    As far as other guys…I have not put myself back out there yet…so I have not had to deal with any of that. I am pretty sure I am not going to be too concerned about what they think of me. As always…I am just going to BE ME. When and if rejection comes…it will hurt…but if I have survived THIS most unexpected…heartwrenching break up…everything else will be small potatoes by comparison…lol.

    Despite everything…I do in fact have empathy for my ex…and the things that he struggles with. I just wish he had more empathy for me. Maybe he does in his heart….but he does not express it as such. Or at least he is not consistent.

    By the way….he called me today (first time since our conversation). I did not answer the phone and I blocked my machine from allowing him to leave any messages. This is what I mean about him…he is so confusing. I am sure…once again…he is just checking on me…but still…which is it? Are you kind and concerned….or mean and cruel? He can’t seem to make up his mind. Either way…I think it’s time for him to leave me alone now.

    Well…off into the wild blue yonder I go Thea…and as always…thank you…xo

  46. Well…so much for leaving me alone. He showed up at more door this morning to check on me after the New York storm. Rang my bell…I opened the door but I was cold as ice. I was like a deer caught in the head lights. It was SO hard to see him after so long. I kept it as breif as possible. That had better be the last time he bothers me…cause he keeps disrupting my healing process.

  47. Curious to know if you have healed yet Tracey?

  48. Hi-
    This past summer I met up with my high school boyfriend (13yrs-17yrs old) at our 30th HS Reunion. I had no intentions of rekindling anything, but he pursued me all weekend, came to see me one state over for 5 weekends in a row and our relationship grew from there. I was over the moon. He was always the one.

    We are both divorced now and his children are older than mine. They are in college and mine are still in school. My youngest is in elementary school and has disabilities caused from a brain tumor when he was very young (benign tumor but has shunt and learning issues related to the tumor). This causes me a great deal of stress as his father is not very involved with his health issues, which is one of the main reasons we divorced. Just recently it was discovered that he has major impairments that are irreversible and I’m trying to fully grasp that he will have these issues for the rest of his life. He is a wonderful boy, and full of life, and I know he will be OK, but the stress of this has caused me a great deal of pain, I haven’t been sleeping and have just not been myself. Very distracted, easily irritated, etc.

    I went to see my boyfriend in November (where he lives) because I had a work trip near his home. I had a hotel room the first night and the second night I was going to stay with him. I got a late start on the first day because of a work crisis (I’m a counselor). I called him to say that I was running late and he truly seemed like he was trying to talk me out of coming…He told me it was going to take me hours because of traffic, he then said the following night (when I was supposed to stay with him) he had to pick up his daughter at college (not asking me to go with him…just said he had to go pick her up) and that there was snow storm coming…etc. My response was, “Well, this day is getting better and better…but I’ll just go home Sat. night since you won’t be around and will beat the storm” He just said “OK, call me when you get here”. I said I would and when we got together, he was very distant and seemed angry. I was not angry when I got there. I had time to think while I was driving and figured it was OK if I just saw him one night…I was really…I am really…in love with this man. But he would not let things go. He got to my hotel room and was saying that I was ‘aggravated’ and ‘had to be annoyed with the traffic’. I was neither. I was hurt that he seemed like he didn’t want to see me and had been trying to talk me out of coming, even though I couldn’t cancel the trip because it was a work thing…We went to dinner…he was very quiet and again, seemed agitated. When I would try and talk to him, it was one word answers and just very cold. We went to a bar after dinner and I said to him, “Why are you being so distant, what is wrong?” He flatly told me, “It’s not me, it’s you. You are the one who is being different. Not me.”
    I honestly don’t think it was me. I honestly was trying to put it behind us and just be OK…but he was intent on being miserable and I told him so. He said he was under a lot of pressure at work and we talked about it for almost an hour. I listened to him, I empathized with him and we left that bar. He drove me back to the hotel and I thought he’d just drop me off…that’s how annoyed he seemed. But he came up to the room anyway and we continued to talk about things. I was exhausted…I hadn’t slept in literally two days and I was literally falling asleep as he sat in a chair and I lied on the bed. We weren’t discussing anything to do with “us” … it was about his family, my family, things that we discussed with each other at great length in the past…it was just our normal discussion…things we talked about all the time and used each other as sounding boards. He eventually got into the bed and I changed in the bathroom and then got into bed. We made love…it was great. We never had sex while we were in high school..even though we had been together for so long…so when we finally had sex when we got together over the summer…it was pretty intense. We had a real connection…or so I thought…? Anyway, we fell asleep and in the morning, he woke me up asking me “when I wanted to get going, etc….” I said that we should get going soon and I told him I was glad he stayed the night because I thought he was going to just drop me off. He actually said, “Yeah, I’m glad I stayed too because this is the most comfortable mattress I’ve ever slept on”. My heart just sank. It did. But I just said, “Yeah, it is really comfortable.” He got up and took a shower. We went out to lunch and then he brought me around to show me places that I needed to see for work.

    It was strained, he was still being distant, but I didn’t say anything to him. I kept trying to get him to come around by being silly, by being funny ( I am pretty funny and always made him laugh) but he wasn’t really coming around. So he dropped me off and gave me a brief hug and I drove home. The storm was starting and it took me 5 hours to get home instead of 2 hours. I texted him when I got home saying I hoped he made it home OK after his trip to get his daughter. He texted back that it was fine and they were just hanging out. I replied that I was glad and I was hanging out with my oldest son too. I texted him in the morning, as we one of usually does and didn’t get a response. I then asked him through another text if he could please call me later so we could talk.

    He called that night and conversation lasted 12 minutes. I asked him how he was and he told me he had to shovel a few driveways (his parents, his ex-wife’s house, his own driveway..etc) and was tired. I listened and then said, “Well, I feel badly because I know this weekend…last night…kind of sucked and I felt bad about it and didn’t like just leaving it unspoken about and was sorry…he replied, “Yeah, it wasn’t great. You are different. You have anger issues and a temper. If things don’t go your way, you act different. I don’t know if this behavior has worked for you in the past when you don’t get your way, but it’s not going to work with me. I was appalled by your behavior and would have left you at the bar but didn’t because you didn’t know where you were. I knew I felt this way at the bar at the end of the night but didn’t say anything.” I replied, “So…you felt this way last night…at the bar…and you still came back to my hotel room and slept with me anyway?? Do you think that was a good idea?” He said, “Yeah, I know. I did and shouldn’t have. It’s over. ” We said a few more things, nothing major…I can’t really remember because I was so shocked, but I remember telling him I didn’t think I was that angry, I was just telling him how I felt and that I didn’t think it was me that was the angry one that night…etc.” He just said, “Whatever, this conversation is over” and we hung up. He then texted me, “Don’t call or text me anymore, OK? Thank you.”
    That was it.

    He actually wrote and sent that text to me.

    I replied, “No worries. And thank you.”

    But I was so frustrated. I then texted him and told him he wasn’t being fair and that I didn’t feel like he wanted me there for the weekend and I was really upset.” He didn’t reply.

    I then texted him about 5 times that week, going into details about why I may have been acting different (although he knew about my son and about the information I just gotten the week before…) and nothing. I haven’t heard anything from him and it’s been 3 weeks.

    I know (especially after writing this out) that it sounds like I’m just being stupid and should forget this man and move on…that he is a jerk and doesn’t understand that communication goes both ways…etc…but I just can’t seem to get over this hurt I’m feeling. I feel so betrayed and let down. I’m just going through the motions in my life right now and missing him so much. We told each other everything…everything. And I miss his friendship. I miss his voice and his laugh. I miss everything that came back to me, that he just cut off so swiftly.

    He is a very intense person. I was always the quieter one in the relationship. He was and is very outspoken and opinionated. I was more reserved and level headed. I think now that we are adults and have grown up, I have a voice and he sometimes doesn’t want to hear it. He just wants me to comply and agree with him. But I can’t. Especially when I feel like I don’t even know what I did to make him so angry and hurt that he’d do such a thing as to ask me to never contact him again? I’m really hurting right now and need advice. Should I try and contact him again or just do my best to move on?

    He is very complex and I guess I am too, and maybe it’s best that we are not together given that he can’t seem to get over a misunderstanding that he made into a bigger deal? Or maybe I did or said something that I don’t realize that hurt him so deeply that he would do this…but he won’t respond so I don’t know if that’s the case. Please let me know what you’re thoughts are…I am really confused and missing this man that I love and need some direction and guidance. Thank you for listening and reading this long, drawn out saga…I know it sounds crazy…but for anyone out there who has loved a man for over 30 years and reads this…maybe you would understand…? Am I crazy? Am I being foolish to think he ever wanted to get back together?

  49. That was a cracken story. Truly. Confusing. Upsetting. Frustrating Sad.

    Stop contacting him completely. Remove him from your phone. Be grateful that you had someone who you could share things with. He’s a symbol that you’ll have that again. Preferably with someone who will be closer and more available in every sense of the word. For whatever reason this one isn’t.

    Take on board his comments – take a hard look at yourself – and if ANY OF IT was justified then vow to work on that in the future. If it wasn’t just chalk it up to his opinion and perspective. Write it off as just that.

    You hang in there. You’ll heal and move on from this and the whole pain will fade. It just wasn’t the fairy tale you might have imagined (I’ve done similar by the way…reconnecting with old flames from many moons gone by) but it doesn’t mean it wasn’t for your highest good.

    If you really love him, wish him well (mentally) and move on to find someone who shares your level of feelings and commitment and who totally appreciates and loves you. OK?

    Make the best of 2014. Eyes forward now, not back. x

  50. Hi Thea,
    I have a long and heart filled story, that i need serious help with.
    My ex Austin an I started dating back in April of 2012. In the month of April is was amazing he was everything i was looking for and plus plus more. I guess its safe too say i was head over heels and still am for him. In April of 2012 we dated for a month and he broke up with me. He and I didnt talk, nor see eachother for 3 months. The end of July 2012 he text me out of thee clear blue, which sent me soring on cloud 9 haha. I was so happy and excited and felt ever wonderful feeling you could imagine. He said ” Hey can we talk,” so i waited for a little bit, because i didnt want to seem that desparate, knowing how i really felt was heck yes i wanna talk haha, but i didnt i waited for a couple of minutes and reviewed myself on what would be best for me. I felt like I could talk to him, but keep a strong shell over me, so he cant try anything to manipulate me. We talked for like 6 hours that night about everything. Telling eachother how we felt and what we want and how we are going to handle the relationship if there is a problem. He was so understanding and heart filled and loving. He didnt begg me to be with him because of the way he worded things and his body language, but i knew he wanted me just by looking into his eyes and how he held my hands. How badly i wanted to say yes i so wanna be with you haha, i didnt i kept my hard shell and i told him he needs to work on it and prove to me he wants me and not just one thing. Well i told myself that id give it a couple of months but of course becuase i missed being his so badly, i told him one night when we came home from Dorney Park Amusement Park, that i would love too be his forever. I will never forget the happiness in his eyes, in his smile, or face. He hugged me so hard i couldnt breathe haha nor tell him too please let go a little haha. He kissed me like it was his first and last kiss. Our relationship was awesome, as i thought it was. Its like after 2 months he like flipped a switch and turned into a monster. The day it happened ive been fighting for us to be together, Iknow i shouldnt of, but he was the only only guy i ever opened up to about my feelings, past, and what i want in the future. He even went out of his way to make sure i graduated college, so he knew atleast one of of us will make it in this crazy world, if one of us lost our job. When the day Hurricane Sandy hit I was admitted into the hospital for a cyst that burst. Austin was there thru it all with me held my hand thru the pain, made sure i had fluids becuase i could eat or drink, he litterally picked me up took me and helped me in the restroom, he was there with thru all the hurtful tests, he came home with too make sure i was ok, and then spent the entire week with me just too make sure i had everything i needed, i was taking my medication for the pain, and also too make sure i was ok. At the time he was doing all these caring things for me, and him knowing i was very thankful for it, he started too become a monster before the hospital situation, so im so confused how he could be so rude too me and then do all the care and loving things for me after i got out of the hospital. I tried to talk to him about it, but it was like talking to a wall. Which i dont understand becuase he always loved too just sit down and talk too me about anything and everything. He rather of done that than spend money on going out. In December 2012 he like completely pushed me away and me i tried my hardest to save us. He was so rude and mean and disrespectful towards me. He tried his hardest too manipulate me, and control me, which is some things i was ok with but most i wasnt and i stuck by myself and didnt change. I found out in December of 2012 i was 4 weeks pregnant to him. He didnt believe me and so we went too the doctors together and he found out for himself i was very much pregnant. The look on his face was like ” Oh shit, damn now what,” but he reacted differently after the doctor told him how far along i was. His reaction was so happy, so excited , so full of life. But soon after that he became a monster again. Its like he didnt want anything to do with me or his child. He started threatening me to the point i grew scared, so i had the police involved. He was charged with harrassment charges and sentenced to probation ofr 9 months as of September 2013. But before that he sent me letters, and called me bawling, his friends calling me saying you r the only one that can save him. My parents showed me how i should b angry for how treated me, because it was only a few weeks after he started threatening me i lost the baby. I listened to my parents about everything on how i should feel and what i should think and what to do to move on, but in the end i didnt listen to my heart. After a year i am still madly in love with him, i still cry myself to sleep and i cry in the morning, i cant stop thinking about him. I feel like a weak person. I would love to talk to him but i cant because of the circumstances with the court. Hes off probation in June of this year, and after that i would be able too talk to him. I just dont know if i should take that step to talk to him, i guess im worried what he would say, or how he would hurt me emotionally. How can i do it with out hurting my parents, and should i consider how my parents feel about me wanting to talk, becuase i dont consider it now and i kind of feel like a bad daughter for it. Over all i just need advice on everything. :(

  51. This blog was very insightful and I agree with all of it. However, I am asking on advise about a different type of letter to an ex (“Dan” in my case). Dan and my relationship ended recently. There was no blame, but rather our timing was off. He was not ready for a serious long-term commitment. As much as I love him, I know this is the fact of the matter. That and the fact that…I am ready for a serious long-term commitment. So anyway, in the time that we have been dating, Dan became my best friend, my closest confidant, and a true role model to a degree. He lost his father 4 years ago, mine 2, and he was the first person I felt comfortable opening up to about this.

    Anyway…I suppose my question is this: would it be wrong for me to send him a letter with zero intention of begging, fixing, complaining, blaming, coercing, manipulating, etc ect. But rather one expressing my deep appreciation for him and the role he’s played in my life this far.

    How often do we have a page full of genuine, heartfelt compliments to look at. I am a nurse, and in all honesty…why wouldn’t I want him to feel good. Even if it pumps up his ego…it should! He is a great guy. I am in no way expecting the letter to bring us back together or expecting a reply. I just think he deserves to hear it.

    I would really appreciate your thoughts.
    All my best,
    Mary

  52. I am all for a letter of gratitude and heart felt emotions being expressed if you’re truly doing them genuinely to say “thank you” and not as some sort of manipulation. Sometimes we say we aren’t expecting a result but deep down we really are. We can lie to ourselves easily. I also think this letter can be done in a way to not simply “pump up his ego” or whatever.

    I would say yes write. Write it anyway and then you can sit on it for the 48 hours and if you still feel inclined to send then send it. Good luck x

  53. This would be my letter. Odd?

    “I know for you everything has already been said and done.
    You assumed all these things…

    My feelings were so painful and confusing. Such feelings leeched and bled into what “relationship” I had. I had to let him go. I don’t think I could ever turn back. All I can do is find a way to put back together these pieces and make them fit.

    I’ll admit I was the crazy one. “

  54. We have not seen each other since the begining of July. I think the last time we were in contact was the begining of August. It is his birthday in a few days and I really want to contact him. Everytime I wrote a letter I felt it too harsh. So I wrote a poem. I wrote this a week ago, have been finessing the poetry not the message, except where I thought it too harsh of course. I am trying to let go. Though I really don’t want to.
    Would love some feedback, yes or no?

    ______________________
    I love you
    I miss you.
    I fell for you
    The night we met
    By that week’s end
    I was your addict.
    Your arms around me
    couldn’t get my fill.
    It was not one way
    We craved each other
    We hated being apart.
    I know it’s true
    We dreamed of travelling
    In our safari suits,
    You planned
    We had fun,
    Me and you.
    Remember 3am?
    We helped each other fly.
    Together nothing could get us down

    As suddenly as you appeared,
    You would disappear
    Each time breaking my heart,
    To ever smaller parts.
    Just as I was healing
    You would come,
    Declare your love,
    Then disappear again.
    I hesitated this time.
    You came with such sincerity.
    You knew what you wanted now
    This would be different
    You would show me how.
    I opened my still fragile heart.
    Then once again,
    You disappeared.
    No explanation.
    Leaving it to my
    Over active imagination.

    I have shed an ocean of tears,
    Written a thousand pages.
    Words in anger,
    Of love
    Concern, despair and hope.
    Through all of this,
    I have loved you.
    Truly, madly, deeply.
    And love you still.
    You are my last thought
    As I fall to sleep.
    The first as I wake.
    I tried to keep channels open
    But each attempt,
    Met with contempt,
    Sorry I took so long.
    To understand your intent
    I was baffled.
    I think I get it now.
    Though I guess
    I will never know the reason why.
    I will heed your wish.
    You know my promise is my word.

    Because I love you,
    Madly, Truly, Deeply,,
    Though this is not my want,
    And it is so very hard to do.
    My gift to you,
    On this,
    Your special day,
    I will do as I surmise you want,
    Despite my deepest wishes
    And so very hard to do.
    I will say goodbye.
    Goodbye,
    My love
    Goodbye,
    Love of my life
    Goodbye,
    The only one I want.
    I wish you sweet life.
    Happy Birthday

    _______________________________
    thanks in advance for you feedback

  55. Hey Gilmourgirl,

    I like the poem, and clearly you put a lot into it, but the main questions are: 1. What will you do if your ex doesn’t reply at all? It won’t feel good, to say the least. 2. What will you do if your ex does? 3. What are you hoping to get out of this? I think if you look back in a year, you very well may regret sending this, especially if the response isn’t what you want.

  56. Thanks for replying Josh.
    What I want and what I expect are two different things. Ofcourse I want to be with him, always have. What I expect, is nothing except knowing that he knows how I feel with no ambiguity. Will it make me feel better? I hope a little feeling of closure but really nothing will help me but time, I know that.
    I wanted feedback because I wanted to make sure it didn’t sound like I was begging, or angry, I want to know if others can read the message. I just want him to understand (should he actually read it ofcourse) and that I have done all I could. If my best aint good enough ce sera.
    Again thanks for your support Josh. It helps, my best girlfriend who helps me through this stuff died last year so I am dealing with this on my own, which doesn’t help ofcourse. It’s good to know people care enough to respond.

  57. Any time! On a blog, I know how much comments and replies mean. Going back over the poem again, I wonder what his reaction to the second and third sections will be. Those do sound like you’re angry and bitter because you don’t like what he’s put you through. If I was the recipient of this poem, I would probably respond with something very short such as “thanks,” or something to that effect, so I would definitely prepare for that. As a general rule, if a guy wants to get in contact with you, he’ll make it happen, somehow, some way. The fact that you two haven’t communicate at all in two months, since early July, is not a good sign. I am really sorry to hear about your best girlfriend. Here’s to hoping for the best.

  58. My two cents GilmoreGirl?

    I say unless you dated a poet who would truly appreciate a poem, keep it to yourself. Start writing a collection of them, for you, but not to send to your EX.

    In my own experience, and again, I don’t know you or your ex, I find that guys don’t typically tend to do great with women’s heart-felt-emotional-outpourings – be they poems, letters, conversations or otherwise!

    Sure, write if you want, even send it if you want but only if you don’t care what he thinks or if he doesn’t reply at all. If you really are to the point you could handle being ignored, or as Josh said “Thanks” then by all means go for it, but again – I say why not create a poetry book of all sorts of your feelings not just an ode to your ex. I’ve seen many site members do so over the years – some even published them…

    That’s my gut. Write but write for yourself just now. To get all of the feelings out of your head and onto the page/screen. It’s cathartic. But do it for YOUR healing. Your sanity. Your growth. Best, Thea

    PS: I reckon Gilmore Girls is one of the best shows ever made. :)

  59. Hi Everyone,

    This blog and everyone’s comments have been very encouraging for me, even though our (breakup)experiences are different. I am in very deep pain & grief now. I am having sleepless nights, will sometimes wake up in the middle of the night, have not eaten for days.
    I broke up with my girlfriend 4 days ago. She asked me to leave her apartment, packed and returned all my stuffs to me. It is all too sudden and a shock for me, knowing that just 1 week ago, we were still together.

    We stayed together sometimes, travel to many places together, had many good times. We were even thinking of getting a house together and get married (we both had Recently she told me that she felt that she was not good enough for me and that she felt we are moving too fast and felt pressure (I regretted not recognising this warning sign then), even though she said I was a good and kind boyfriend for her. She keep feeling sorry and I try to re-assure her that she is a good girlfriend for me and no need to compare herself to others and I asked her not to feel pressure.

    After an arguement we had last Friday (which is my fault), she broke down and cried. She cried till Saturday and told me to leave her apartment, that she want to have a distance from me, needs to be alone. She told me she wants to break up and we cannot be couple anymore.

    Before I left her apartment (I did not want to leave, but I knew that is best at that time), I stayed beside her and tried to hug her as much as I can, kiss her forehead, reassuring her that I am always here for her when she needs me. I also told her I love her and thank her for everything. She told me she cannot tell me now if she love me. I told her ok, no need to worry and not to think so much. All she told me was “Thank you for everything”

    I told her I will wait but she ask me not to say that as it will make her feel pressured. I said “I love you” but she did not reply. After that day, she did not send me any messages.

    When I sometimes email to ask her how she is, or encourage her to have her meals properly etc. told her she can always contact me if she wants to, that I am like her Sunlight, far but feel near. She will only say “thank you”, “take care of yourself”.

    I try to show her that I am ok (so she will not worry), but i am suffering inside I am trying now not to send any messages to her even though deep down inside me I want to. I know I need to give her space. It pains me that she did not message me. Everyday, I am just waiting for her email…

    There are times when I am struggling very badly that I feel that I need to be strong and not give her worries by emailing her msgs like “I miss you”, “lets get back together”, “I need you”, “please do not break up” at least not for now. But will TRY NOT TO contact her as I do not want her to worry or feel bad.

    I am crying every day (but have to put on a smile because of my work).

    I cry myself to sleep everyday, waiting for her contact that never come, in fear of the future that she will never come back or she meet someone new (and many other fears).

    I am having sleepless nights, will sometimes wake up in the middle of the night, have not eaten for days.

    I have never blame or feel anything negative towards her. All I can feel towards her is gratitude and for her happiness (this feeling has remained since first day we met)

    I am now writing a letter to her.

    I will follow the 48 hour rule (even 72 hour rule, smile). If it takes me 2-3 months to write this letter, I will wait. I do not want to rush to send the letter now, because I know that anything that is send in impulse is not good.

    I will compile and write out my thoughts and true feelings, a little at a time, every day. I want to tell her how I really feel and I am grateful to her. I want to tell her she is a good girlfriend. I want to tell her how wonderful she is for me.

    I regretted not telling my true feelings when we were together.

    She do not know how much happiness she brought to my life and the many mountains that she helped me to climb…I want her to know that.

    I am a Buddhist so I keep her photo behind Buddha photo, at least that ease the pain of seeing her photo now and know that she is safe with the Buddha (good idea isn’t it smile)

    Sorry for the long message. I am in pain. Help……

    Thanks everyone for reading…

  60. Hi Howard,

    What follows might be some tough love, but I hope it helps. First, that one argument was not the reason you broke up, so you can’t beat yourself up about it. And if it was the reason you broke up, which I know it isn’t, then it wasn’t a very strong relationship to begin with. This, in all likelihood, has been building for quite some time. She wanted to end it, she didn’t just do it on a whim.

    It’s great that you still care about her and you seem like a great person. I’ll admit it, I still care about my ex more than I’d like to admit, but it’s not nearly as much as in the early days. The early days are going to be painful and you are experiencing the symptoms many of us had post-breakup: trouble sleeping, awkward relationship with food, tough time focusing and finding the joy in life, etc.

    You have to stop contacting her at all. She doesn’t want to be with you and she’s made that clear. At this point, any communication is not sending a good message. When you say that you’re okay or ask her how she is, it isn’t exactly pulling her back in, it’s pushing her away more. If you take the time away from her to review your relationship, you will see the signs and the red flags. There always are. I can see it in your opening paragraphs. Cut off all communication immediately. Don’t stalk her social media, don’t text or email or anything else. If you keep contacting her, you’re just going to be extending both her pain and yours. She doesn’t want to get back together with you. She knows your feelings, and if she wants to contact you or get back together, she’ll let you know. She’s got your contact information. As far as her “worrying” goes: she’s a big girl, she’ll be fine. It’s you that you have to worry about, because she’s doing what’s right for her and you need to do the same.

    If I could go back and change only one thing, and I think everyone will agree with me, it would be to not text her and to communicate with her as little as possible from the get go. I know it is all throughout SYDB, but Thea should probably post a new “Things We All Regret and Wish We Could Change about the early days” or something like that. It’s on here, just scattered and I can’t remember where all of the good tips are, since there are far more than just the “10 Tips to get over it” post on this site. There are tons of gold nuggets.

    In any case, I know how hard it is and how much of a void you now have that she left, but you have to stop trying to reach out to her. It’s that important. I know you can do it. I went from exchanging over 5,000 texts a month with my ex to zero and we lived together for over a month after the break up of our engagement, so I know you have it in you.

    Definitely keep us updated and see what else SYDB has to offer. Best of luck to you!

  61. Hi Josh
    Thanks very much for your reply and advice
    I will try my best not to contact her.
    I agreed with you that by contacting her now, it will only extend her confusion, suffering and pain, and I do not want her to suffer.
    Do you think she still love me? Sorry to ask that but I cannot stop thinking about this…
    One week ago from today was the “last dinner” she cooked for me. It pains me so much.
    I have been through many hurts, so I will try to survive this.
    I been through an attempted suicide when I was 18 yrs old (I am 38 yrs old now), had a divorced 2 years ago, many many hurts and lost.
    My ex girlfriend is the first true love I had after my divorce.
    Looking back, in the few relationships I had in the past I can say now that my ex- wife and my ex- girlfriend (who broke up last Saturday) was the 2 most special and wonderful persons in my life.
    All I can ever feel for them is gratitude.
    I know it might not sound normal, but I have never feel bitter or hate to anyone in my past relationships. (maybe being a Buddhist helps me in this way)
    If anything negative I can feel is that I was an asshole ex-husband and a selfish, bad ex-boyfriend.
    I felt that I hurt too many people in my life (not just the 2 special person I mentioned)
    Since the breakup, I have been writing down my thoughts and feelings every day, like a journal or diary. In a way, I am writing it to and for myself. I would also like to send the letter to her, not to make her feel bad or negative. Just want to tell her my true feelings
    Can I send the letter to her one day? I am not thinking of sending it now or even next week or the week after. I will send it when I am recover and ready, a few months later….and following the 48 hours rule. I know NOW IS NOT the time to send the letter.
    In a way, the letter is a letter of gratitude for her. I am not sending the letter to beg her or to ask her to come back.
    And I know that after sending that, my soul will be at ease….
    Please feel free to share everyone what you think and feel about I have said

    Thanks again
    Howard

  62. Hi Howard,

    Is it fair to say you might be mourning more than one relationship now? It seems like there are quite a few unresolved feelings about the past. While no one, except for her, can know if she still loves you, I can tell you that she still thinks about you. It’s too new for her not to. Now, just because our exes might think about us, doesn’t mean they want to be with us. If they did, they would do it.

    As more time goes by and you can separate yourself from this emotional attachment to the relationship, you’ll start seeing it much more clearly. As far as if you should send the letter eventually, well, that is up to you, but I would say hold on to it for at least a couple of months, ideally more, before you think about sending it. If you’re going along smoothly, you won’t want to send it. Down the line, if you want to send a gratitude letter, then okay, but definitely hold off for a long while.

    It’s great that you’re journaling. It helps. And you can track your progress, as Thea is fond of saying. Keep journaling, look back at it in a month or two, and you’ll see how far you’ve come.

    You say you don’t have anger or bitterness towards anyone, which is great, but re-read what you wrote. It certainly looks as if you are very hard on yourself for what you perceive as wrongdoing. You have to forgive yourself for the past. Beating yourself up about what happened twenty years ago or even five years ago isn’t going to help you now. You’ve got to forgive yourself, learn from the experience, and be okay. You are giving everyone else the benefit of the doubt, it seems, except for yourself. Here you are, comforting your ex and trying to make sure she is okay, while she is the one who should probably be checking on you.

    You just got divorced two years ago, and you got into another serious relationship and you’re only 38! You’re going to be okay, it just doesn’t look like it right now.

  63. Hi Josh
    Thanks again for replying, much appreciated my friend!
    Yes, I need to learn to forgive myself. Many people also told me to take things easy and not carry all burdens by myself
    Yes, I probably have unsolved feelings. Not sure if I am mourning for more than one.
    I still have memory of my suicide 20 years ago, but no more pain for sure. Do I want to go through the same pains again before I attempted suicide 20 years ago, hell no! But if I ask myself if I am grateful for the experiences, I am very grateful because the suicide has helped to mould me to be kinder, more compassionate for people, and have empathy. My outlook of life and people changed because of my suicide, all for the positive.
    I married when I was 22 years old, my ex-wife was also my very first girlfriend in my life. The marriage lasted for 12 years. We both ended it mutually (but honestly the marriage ended because of the wrongs I had committed, not trying to push all blame to myself here, but if you were to know the true reasons behind the divorce, everyone would agree that I was an Axxhole…). We continue to be good friends (we are both practicing Buddhists) and keep in contact even now, so there was not so much pain.
    My ex- girlfriend was my second serious and real relationship in my life
    I did had a few short time relationships in the past with a few people, but they will either not right morally and not healthy (I will not go details here). I would not even want to call those relationships… I do not even feel so much pain in those “relationships”

    Now you can see why I am so hurt and feel so much pain from my ex girlfriend.

    Thanks again for listening.

    Howard

  64. Hi, I was just wondering if I could have some advice. I was thinking of sending my ex of recent, a letter regarding my feelings and I guess to get some closure. We have been separated for a week now, and last night I drafted a letter for him, though I haven’t sent it as I’m still upset and shocked about the whole thing.

    We met a year ago through a mutual friend and we hit it off extremely well. It felt like we had known each other for a lot longer than we did. After a couple of months of being together, he had to go back to start his next year of university 3 hours away from our home city. It was hard as we had only been together for a short period of time, but we both decided to make it work. It was going very well. I would go down and visit him for the weekend and would also spend time with each other when he was able to come back to visit. He studies medicine which is quite an intense course. He came back to our home city in March and felt he couldn’t carry on with the rest of his year. This was due to a particular student, which had been affecting him since the end of his first year. It has become quite bad that this particular student is about to face bad consequences for what has happened and has resulted in him deferring his year until next September.

    This year he is studying at the university in our home city so our relationship would be easier to maintain this year. After this year, he will be going back to study medicine three hours away and has asked me if I would consider moving and going to study down there with him as I will hopefully be starting university next year to study midwifery. I was strongly considering and thinking about moving down there with him. He was also looking at the possibility of studying dentistry in another city , but has decided to carry on with medicine.

    When he broke-up with me, it put me in a state of shock as I didn’t see this coming. He used the excuse of university, next year, to break-up. He felt it was kinder to do it now. He also felt like he was being selfish and pressuring me into moving down there with him and taking me away from my support network. That wasn’t the case at all, and his support network is here too in our home city. He started off with saying ‘we could see how we feel in a few years time’ and that it wasn’t an easy decision for him to make and that he was truly sorry. It was not long before we broke up that he was saying he has been the happiest he has this past year because of me, loved me so much and wanted to look after me for as long as he could because we make a great team. He said these on a few other occasions too and I have replied in the same manor. His parents were very shocked at his decision and his father sent me a lovely message saying they still love me and want to keep in touch and we still go to choir every Thursday together.

    I feel like it is such a shame that it has come to this. He confided in me things about his past and how that’s affected him, regarding bullying and a health matter and I supported him through all of it. He also supported me as he knew my father had not long passed away. He was my best friend as well as my boyfriend. I miss talking to him.

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