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Why Not To Contact Your Ex

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  • Why Not To Contact Your Ex

    The content stickys of this forum noted this, but didn't go into the details required to truly understand its importance. I have seen a large number of threads in this forum pointing out either partner, or both, wanting to 'be friends' after a breakup. I decided to do some research on this topic, and post it here for all those encountering the dilemma to review and understand. I will break down many common reasons why we tend to believe being friends or communicating with your ex after a breakup is healthy or normal. I hope everyone finds this useful!

    The Big Question: Why? Why does my ex want to be friends? Why do I want to be friends with my ex?
    Answer: After a breakup, there is a huge hole in your life. You likely went from spending many hours a week together to none. Humans are creature of habit, and when a habit breaks we seek to restore or compensate for it. Imagine if you had another man/woman you could to crawl into bed with after a breakup. You probably would, wouldn't you? That is you filling the void; and a reason why its not your 'ex' that you want to stay in touch with, but anyone who will fill the gap that was your ex.

    Reason 1: I actually have a lot of good reasons to stay in touch...
    Truth: No. You have a lot of excuses, not reasons.

    Reason 2: This person was really important in my life, why wouldn't we stay friends? We mean a lot to each other.
    Truth: They were really important. If your ex is the one trying to be friends, it's not that they actually want you back, its that they are having a hard time getting over the relationship. The same for vise versa. And don't kid yourself, if you stayed friends you wouldn't have the same standards you keep as with any other friend. You are subconsciously seeing yourself as with this person still.

    Reason 3: I need closure, I need to stay in touch to get over him/her.
    Truth: Nope, closure isn't provided by your ex, it is provided by you, through grieving and accepting your loss.

    Reason 4: I need to find out why he/she dumped me, -Or- I need to let him/her know why I dumped them.
    Truth: What does it matter? You can't change your ex's way of thinking. There was something incompatible about you two and it's not going to change overnight. Hearing or giving a laundry list of reasons for being dumped or dumping them is not going to get you two back together. It will only make you become more insecure.

    Reason 5: If we stay friends we may get back together again.
    Truth: It could happen, but it will fail again. Without time alone to grieve, you are both bound for the same fate. You are each continuing to pick the scabs of the relationship, never letting them completely heal. You are also likely to be self destructive during this time; you are probably trying to 'fix' everything thing that was wrong to make your ex happy. This type of behavior leads to resentment. With resentment, you are incapable of loving. You are not yourself.

    Reason 6: I need to return some items or retrieve some.
    Truth: Like what? Your soap? These exchanges should occur within the first day or two. Anything that you 'need' after that time probably wasn't really 'needed', and is rather an excuse to see your ex. Any gifts you received or gave should remain with the recipient. A gift does not belong to the giver, but the receiver. This type of behavior could further damage yourself. What if they have already moved on and you run into their new mate? See what I mean?

    Reason 7: We had great sex, and want to be friends with benefits now.
    Truth: Again, not accepting your loss. You are probably assuming it is still exclusive, which really means you still see it as a relationship; which it is not. This behavior is likely to lead to confusion, insecurity (over pondering what they are doing when you are not together), and believe it will lead back to a relationship. Also, it prevents you from moving on. You aren't going to find your next partner while still sleeping with your ex.

    Reason 8: We work at the same place, live in the same neighborhood, go to the same school, we have children, etc.
    Truth: This may be, but it does not imply you need to have consistent generic communication. If you work at the same place, keep conversation brief and work related. If same school, its ok to say hi passing each other in the hallway. Have kids together? Keep the conversation in relation to them. Anything outside of these boundaries is an excuse to keep in contact with your ex, and again, preventing you from grieving and moving on.

    Conclusion: Play out any of these in your head. How do honestly picture them going? That's right, not well, in fact it may even make it worse. Do you really believe your ex will magically become 'the one' by staying friends with them? Will they magically get that sex drive back? Trust you around your friends? Be more open about their feelings? Spend more time with you? The answer is no, and if so, only temporarily until they become comfortable again. If it hurts when you do that, don't do it.

    Closing Statement: Its hard, but is necessary. DO NOT CONTACT OR RESPOND TO YOUR EX!!!

    Some information gathered from: Getting Past Your Breakup by Susan J. Elliot
    Last edited by Dagwood; April 14th, 2012, 11:06 PM.

  • #2
    Re: Why Not To Contact Your Ex

    Dagwood. You are new here but are already a respected poster, excellent thread.
    "The power in a relationship lies with whoever cares less"

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Why Not To Contact Your Ex

      Indeed I concur
      There is overwhelming evidence that the higher the level of self-esteem, the more likely one will treat others with respect, kindness, and generosity. People who do not experience self-love have little or no capacity to love others.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Why Not To Contact Your Ex

        Great insight! It is essential to take some time to clear your head and truly determine the direction you want to go in a relationship in addition to creating curiosity with your ex.

        Thanks,

        Josh

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        • #5
          Re: Why Not To Contact Your Ex

          This post is exactly the thing I should be reading right now...thank you Dagwood

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Why Not To Contact Your Ex

            I wish I read this a few days ago...now im blocked on facebook.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Why Not To Contact Your Ex

              Originally posted by Snokone3000 View Post
              I wish I read this a few days ago...now im blocked on facebook.
              The best thing that could happen to you!!
              There is overwhelming evidence that the higher the level of self-esteem, the more likely one will treat others with respect, kindness, and generosity. People who do not experience self-love have little or no capacity to love others.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Why Not To Contact Your Ex

                This thread is very relevant to me right now. My girlfriend and I recently broke up, and she gave the "I'd still really like to be friends" line, to which I think I unintentionally rejected her request for remaining friends, by basically telling her it will be hard for me to be "just a friend" because I will still be seeing her as my "girlfriend". I'd been contemplating getting in touch with her, just to reach out and show that I didn't mean to reject her like that - we had an amiable breakup (amiable? amicable? Not sure the word I'm looking for - we broke up on good terms), but at the same time, I know that my purpose for wanting to stay friends with her would be a hope that we would get back together.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Why Not To Contact Your Ex

                  Thanks for the post!! It was very much needed >< Was being torn apart with my ex saying "Let's be friends..." and still seeing her at uni because we study the same course! But I know that I can't at the moment..

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Why Not To Contact Your Ex

                    Yup I agree, do not contact or response to your Ex... and its funny I read this because two days ago after not hearing from my ex for 4 months she send me a message just to see how I am???

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                    • #11
                      Re: Why Not To Contact Your Ex

                      As a relationship columnist, I agree with your points, but I'll add that I think exes CAN be friends IF they breakup was amicable and enough time has passed for each person to process the breakup and move on. This works best if both people are dating again. How do you know if you're ready to reach out to an ex for a friendly meetup or phone chat? When you don't get a flutter in the pit of your stomach thinking about him or her.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Why Not To Contact Your Ex

                        What if your ex contacts you after he broke up with you a month ago when he knows you're moving on and says, "For what it's worth, I feel bad about the situation, and I'm sorry."?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Why Not To Contact Your Ex

                          Originally posted by moviegurl View Post
                          What if your ex contacts you after he broke up with you a month ago when he knows you're moving on and says, "For what it's worth, I feel bad about the situation, and I'm sorry."?
                          Who gives a flying rats ass?

                          Go get your shit and slam the door.
                          There is overwhelming evidence that the higher the level of self-esteem, the more likely one will treat others with respect, kindness, and generosity. People who do not experience self-love have little or no capacity to love others.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Why Not To Contact Your Ex

                            Wow, I have never seen this explained so well. I just broke up with someone who has a habit of remaining friends with their ex's... After a couple of months, I have also received an e-mail asking how I am. I will never understand that. Wanting to go from a heated relationship to a lukewarm one as friends not realizing that hope will always be on my mind? I prefer to just end it and find someone else that wants my time.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Why Not To Contact Your Ex

                              Hey.

                              I just wanted to say a MASSIVE thank you for writing this last email. I have another point to add to your list, which is something that I have personally experienced over the last week. Me and my girlfriend just had a really bad break up - I was struggling with my own emotions, in that i found it really hard to show her how much I loved her. She was absoloutley stunning with good looks, she was a Danish blonde, only 19, intelligent - starting history at uni next year. We met in a club in England and I ended up moving over to Denmark with her. we moved into a house in England within a month of meeting, then over to Denmark after months. 2 Months later I am back in England.

                              My new one for the list is:

                              If your ex asks you for time and space, for the love of god.. GIVE THEM IT.

                              I have just completley screwed up any chances I may have had of getting back with her, by practically harassing her - asking what I did wrong, asking how I could change, telling her I still love her. I even hacked into her facebook to see if she was receiving my messages (I know - the stupidist thing I have ever done). She has threatened to go to the police if I contact her again in the future. She has never hated me, she just fell out of love with me. I went on skype with her for the very kast time tonight, and I just sat there, all cold and emotionless whilst she cried. Im such a bas****.

                              I have now completley messed everything up. I have a huge personal debt now, no money, no job, no friends left back in the UK, and I am stuck with my parents who get stressed about everything all the time.

                              I have always tried to be a positive person. I have reflected on all the good times, and I have come back with some life experience, and the best bit:

                              My ex looked me in the eye one day (whilst we were still together) and said "I believe in you mike, you can do anything if you put your mind too it". These words are going to stay with me for the rest of my life.

                              I f*****ng miss her

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