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Thread: My boyfriend feels guilty about breakup with ex

  1. #1

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    My boyfriend feels guilty about breakup with ex

    Well, he feels guilty about how he broke up with her and that it hurt her feelings. Apologies in advance for the long post, but some background:

    He has been with his ex for 4 years, and for most of that time, based on what he and his friends tell me, she manipulated and scarred him mentally, would always put him down when he was enthusiastic about something in his life that did not involve her. She would cut herself and sometimes use that as leverage to get him to do what she wanted. When he finally broke up with her, he did so directly, stone faced, with very little eye contact as she begged for another chance. He says this is what haunts him the most.

    Then he met me after about 2 months after the breakup. Since then we have had nothing but good times. We are very much compatible, we have spent every weekend together despite mild location distance between us, and we text each other every day, and he has had my by his side at every event even intimate family gatherings. His friends absolutely love me and say that we belong together (it seems most of his friends and family did not like her) He is very open about his past relationship, and I see the bitterness and emotional scars show when he talks about her. I even asked if he can recall any good times with her, and he seemingly can't think of too many.

    It's been about 5 months and up until recently, he was apprehensive about using the term "girlfriend" in front of certain people. I understood that he didnt want to rush into things. But he surprised me earlier this year and made it official to all of his friends and family. We even shared a kiss in front of everyone during a family party!

    He says that he feels that I am the one, and his friends and family seems to agree that I am an upgrade from his last. He tells me that he loves me and loves who he is when he is around me. and that he can see his brightest future with me.

    Recently he has brought it to my attention that he wanted to have a sit down with his ex to clear the air because he feels that he is responsible for breaking her heart. I told him that she broke his first, and we are all responsible for our own happiness. But he feels guilty for pursuing his own happiness. He reassures me that there is no romantic feelings left, only the guilt.

    I am not sure exactly how he will handle the situation, and part of me feels that he is setting it up to allow her to yell at him or something to hopefully make her feel better.

    He tells me he is writing down and revising what he is going to say to her, and he even has some of her stuff to give back to her. I told him that he should talk to her, and I am hoping that after this he can fully move forward past all of this, and hopefully break free of this emotional grip his ex has on him.

    My concern: I am NOT worried about him, i am worried about his ex and her manipulative actions. I don't want her to start manipulating his feelings, or even threatening to cut herself as a way of getting him back. I know that he wont go back, but I am worried that her manipulation will shut him down and effect our relationship.

    Or I could be speculating too much. There could be a chance that she is getting better emotionally and the meet up is a good thing. To help the healing process.

    I am going to try to give him my trust, and hope that he knows what he is doing. I just needed to write down my thoughts somewhere, and I figured this forum might be a good start :)

  2. #2
    Platinum Member SherrySher's Avatar
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    I think you're doing the right thing in supporting him.

    He still has unresolved feelings of guilt over the break up and needs closure. I can't see him having any feelings for her, I think he's being honest with you and telling you the truth.
    It really is just about ending things properly without feeling guilt.

    I hope he finds that and that she doesn't start her antics. Although if anything, it will prove to him even more than he did the right thing in getting away from her.

    When is he planning on seeing her? Couldn't he just message her? I'm not exactly sure why it needs to be in person.

  3. #3
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    I realize you didn't explicitly ask for our input, but since you posted, I am guessing you do want to hear our thoughts. So here goes.

    I don't see why he needs to have this conversation with her now, especially in person. I get that he feels bad for hurting her, but having a "sit down" with her is not the way to go about dealing with guilt. Not when he is in another relationship now. It sure wouldn't sit well with me, anyway. I expect my partners to exercise better judgment and stronger boundaries in situations like this.

    Personally, I think he is about to open a can of worms. She thus isn't the only one you need be to worried about. She can't manipulate her way back into his life if he doesn't clear the way for her to do that, and that's what he is about to do with this misguided plan. He could avoid that risk by letting the past stay in the past, but he's about to bring his past into his present. I would be very uneasy about this whole idea, primarily because he is the one initiating it. That is not good.

  4. #4
    Platinum Member SherrySher's Avatar
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    The reason why I can understand is, I've been in this position.

    Even though my ex was manipulative and emotionally/verbally abusive, I felt guilt when I ended it and knew it hit them hard.

    At the time I didn't care, (he deserved it) but after a long time, I moved on and felt guilty. Is it reasonable? Maybe not. But if your boyfriend has a conscience like mine, then it's a good thing, not a bad thing.

    I wouldn't jump to the conclusion that he is missing her (although you know him better than us).
    I see it more like, he is finally happy, he found love and now he wants to have complete closure without feeling like he was cold and harsh about things. (at least that's how I take it, as I have been there).

    If it clears his mind and he is able to let go and be guilt free, so be it.

    But yeah, I don't understand the part either why it needs to be in person. I sent a message, that in my opinion is more than she deserves and is good enough.

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  6. #5

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    Thank you for the response :) he said sometime this week, he is still organizing his thoughts and speech on paper. I'm not entirely sure on why it needs to be in person, but I feel that I should express my concerns to him. Writing on this forum helped me to organize my thought :)
    Last edited by B7276; 01-26-2019 at 12:44 PM.

  7. #6

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    No worries thank you for the input. I can see where you are coming from, and I think I will find some time to express my concerns

  8. #7
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    He is not over her. You are a rebound. Sorry.

    You guys got involved too soon. He should have had at least 6 months to process the break up. Perhaps more, since it was abusive.

    You are not his therapist and he should not be talking about this with you. I strongly suggest you end this.

  9. #8
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    You ARE worried about him, although you say you are only worried about her actions.

    I think you're worried that she will get emotional and he will react to her. And perhaps feel guilty enough to get back together with her.

    Honestly, do these fears live secretly in the back of your mind? You don't have to tell us the truth as long as you are honest with yourself.

  10. #9
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    He broke up with with her face to face ....what the hell is there left to say and why does he want to say it !

    We don't know the exes side , maybe this will benefit her !!! or maybe he is actually been cruel opening this all up ....

    She can't have been so bad if he wants to meet up with her and rake over it !

    I also think deep down you are worried ..you mentioned more then once how his friends and family like you etc etc ...just seems you are trying to convince yourself in trying to convince us .

  11. #10
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    What if she asks him if he is single ... can you imagine how he is going to worm his way out of this .... this has disaster written all over it ...

    sorry this is not what you asked ..actually I dont know what you did ask lol ..I just get a not so good feeling about it all

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