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Thread: Odd way my ex went about wishing me a happy birthday?

  1. #1

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    Odd way my ex went about wishing me a happy birthday?

    After a year, my ex and I ended on good terms about 7 months ago, and she randomly popped up on my birthday, after 6 months, which is fine I guess, but it was just kind of odd how she went about it. I'll try to keep it a brief as possible, but some details and back story are obviously needed.

    We met via a popular dating app in early Feb of 2018, her 31, me 37, hit it off pretty great, and things progressed in a pretty standard fashion between us. At first, she was just looking for something super casual because she was 5 months out of a 9 year relationship with someone, and the last thing she wanted was to jump back into something serious. I think we ended up liking each other a lot more than we expected and started getting more involved. I know that the last year of her previous relationship, she was completely miserable, but kept putting off ending things.

    Her only quirks I noticed, was that she got attached to me pretty quickly and could be a bit clingy at times. We were also very texty with one another. Pretty much all day throughout the work day, and well into the evening on the days we didn't see each other. That was fine because we always had tons of stuff to talk or joke about. Our senses of humor were very similar.

    At our peak, we would see each other twice during the week, and on Saturday evenings, I would be at her place, we'd do whatever for the evening, I'd stay over, and we'd spend all day Sunday together until the evening. There were a few time I'd go over Friday evening and we'd just spend the whole weekend together until Sunday evening. So, yeah, we were spending a pretty decent amount of time together.

    Also, early on between us, she told me how she had been seeing a therapist for a while to better deal with some of her emotional issues. It wasn't something I ever asked her about in too much depth. All I know is that "feelings were gross" as she would say. She got better with it as things went on between us though.

    Just from what I know about her, she seemed to prefer casual relationships, and she'd say how us getting into a full on "romantic" relationship was very unexpected. She would always joke at how I tricked her into falling in love with me. I would assume her preference for casual may have something to do with her emotional struggles. You don't usually get too emotionally invested in a person, and when it ends, it's easier to walk away from because nobody really gets hurt.

    All in all, we got along great, had a few minor tiffs, but nothing major. Took a few road trips together, along with typical "relationship" type stuff. A pretty normal situation for the most part.

    I'm a working artist, and the last 3 months between us, I was getting way too consumed with some things I was working on, and we weren't spending nearly as much time together, and I know it was making her pretty sad. I knew what was happening, but it took me a minute to really step back and fully realize how it was affecting her. I think she was just being patient, waiting and hoping things would get back to normal.

    We were supposed to spend NYE together with one of her friends and exchange our Xmas gifts, but I was really sick, so we waited until the first Saturday of the year. She came by, we did our thing, walked to a little dive bar near my apartment that she liked for a few drinks. It was there that I was starting to explain what was going on and to apologize for being neglectful the past few months and so on etc etc. Didn't get too far into the convo because it was pretty loud in the bar, so after an hour we went back to my place.

    Got inside, and she started crying a little, saying how she just wanted things to be back to the way they had been over the spring and summer. I wanted to continue talking to her, but I think she was pretty upset and felt it best she leave. When she got home 40 mins later, she texts me saying that maybe we need to end things. Don't remember exactly what was said, but then she said maybe we can try again one day when our lives are a bit more in-sync. It wasn't something I took too literally, because we all know, during a break up, emotions and whatnot are all keyed up and sometimes you say things like that.

    I don't think I handled the situation in the best manner, because it was a bit unexpected, and I didn't know how to respond, so I didn't reply. I figured if anything, I'd give it a few days or so for her to cool down, and I would get a hold of her to see if we could talk in person and try to resolve things.

    She actually beat me to it. One week later, late that Saturday evening, she texts me saying that she had this "overwhelming urge to tell me that she misses me". I replied, we talked for a bit and she went to bed. We talked for a bit the next day, and she said that for now, maybe we should just view things as us just "seeing eachother" instead of jumping right back into a full on relationship. She also mentioned that she just didn't have the emotional capacity at the moment to express certain feelings towards me. Essentially no saying "I love you". I was fine with that, and over all, she seemed really happy that we were "together" again. If anything, we'd just work our way through the little bump in the road. She even brought up another possible end of summer road trip.

    Over those next 2.5 weeks, we only saw each other 3 times. The last night I saw her was on a Saturday, and I was planning to see her that next weekend and start staying over again, and to get back to spending more time together...trying to get back up to speed with things. Friday came around and she kind of vanished on me after 2pm. Hadn't heard from her the rest of the evening, but I figured she was out with some of her friends. Even the rest of the weekend, we really didn't talk much until Sunday night. Once Monday came around, she told me I should come over this upcoming Saturday because it was her dogs birthday, and all 3 of us could walk to the pet store together and get her dog some treats, then I'd stay over. Of course I agreed.

    We were talking a bit on Tuesday evening, and I told her that I was obviously still in love with her and she still meant the world to me, despite me getting a bit carried away with my work. I was trying to reassure her. Her respone was less than enthusiastic. Basically she said it was hard for her to feel the same since the last few months those feeling weren't being reciprocated by me and she didn't know if she was still in love with me anymore. We went on a bit and she said that maybe we could start looking into seeing other people while we could still continue what we had been doing. It wasn't something that I felt I'd be ok with, and after going back and forth on it, she finally confessed something to me.

    During the week we were broken up, assuming that it was totally over and we'd most likely never see or speak to each other again and go our separate ways in life, she made a profile on another popular dating app. We both live in Chicago, and she connected with a guy who lives 35 miles away in the south suburbs. Anyone who knows Chicago traffic, knows it can take a minimum of an hour and 15 mins to go those 35 miles. Plus, where she is isn't exactly the easiest part of the city to get to from where he's at. So, who knows what his selling point was to her. And to inject a little humor into the situation, it's sort of an unspoken Chicago rule that you don't date anyone from the burbs if you live in the city. But, whatever, it's her choice.

    I guess during the time we were back together, they had been talking a bit here and there. First via the app, and then some texting. And that Friday I mentioned where she kinda vanished on me. Yup, you guessed it...he came into the city and they met up for a date. In short, she wanted to continue seeing him from time to time, and still be able to have us see each other as well. I think her whole thing with him, was that they'd mainly just hang out once every couple weeks or when they had time. Go out, be social, and hook up. It wasn't something that had any potential of going beyond that and she wouldn't be going out by him. Just something super casual. If I wanted to persue seeing another girl, I could as well. In short, it just wasn't something I was ok with. I felt if we couldn't resolve our issue and she just didn't feel the same about me/us any more, then it was best we just end things and go our separate ways.

    That's what happened. We said our goodbyes and that was that.

    I don't use Facebook, so our only ties via social media was Instagram. I cut those ties shortly after. In the last 6 months, life has gone on as normal, I've dated a couple girls here and there, nothing serious, but that's really it. I assume her and that guy continued seeing each other to some degree. As of this writing, I have no idea if it's still a thing between them, if she's dating someone else or if she's single.

    So, towards the end of July, my birthday is on a Tuesday. I'm at work, a little after 8am, and I hear my phone go off. I look, and I see it's her and she's sent me a Direct Message on Instagram. I was pretty shocked to see it was her. Especially after this amount of time.

    All it was, was a picture of me from this time last year. At the end of August, we took a trip to Oklahoma and Kansas. We were in our Air BnB goofing around and she snapped a few pics of me acting a fool. I replied saying that I couldn't believe she still had that picture and a laughing emoji. An hour goes by, and she sends another from that day. Still not saying anything. I just replied with another laughing emoji, sent that, then started typing a proper "thank you" message, but I wasn't sure how to go about it. Part of me felt I should just say "thank you blah blah blah, take care". But given the somewhat peculiar way she was going about this, I opted to poke at the hornets nest...so to speak. This was my reply;

    "I assume this is your way of wishing me a happy birthday, so thank you. Definitely a surprise to hear from you after all this time, and to be honest, I didn't think you'd be concerned about it at this point since we ended things under the assumption that we'd never talk again, so I do appreciate it. Maybe one of these days we could grab a drink and catch up on life?"

    In short, I never got a reply from her, and I come to find out, she ended up blocking me to prevent further communication. Not sure why that would be necessary. If she didn't want to engage in any conversation, that's fine. It wasn't like I was going to continue trying to talk to her. It's not something I'm reading into too much, but I'm still a bit perplexed by it. She's a pretty blunt and direct person, so even if she had other motives for contacting me, I think she would have just been up front about it. I just think it's a bit odd that she would go about it that way, and like I said, after all this time, why still be concerned with an exes birthday. Regardless of what's going on or not going on in her life romantically.

    However, I do get it. Some people do indeed reach out after the fact to wish an ex a happy birthday, but it's not a very common thing. All my past relationships have ended on good terms, and I've never had an ex do something like that. It's not something I would do regardless of the time frame. Outside of just being nice or thoughtful, I just don't see the point, and what does that other person have to gain from it? Especially when you've moved on, you've dated other people or its been the same person, and just with all the general life stuff that happens in 6 months.

    Funny thing, is that her birthday was 1.5 months after we ended things. I didn't say anything to her. I thought about it for a brief second, but didn't see the point, and felt it just wasn't my place to do so anymore. Like I said...we ended things under the assumption that this was it. Done. Over. As how most relationships end and you move on. I mean, unless you have a reason to stay in touch, but that wasn't the case with us.

    Ironically, a relationship I was in before this one, was 2 years. We ended on good terms, and her birthday did indeed come around 6 months after. By that point, I was seeing someone new, and moved on. The last thing I was concerned with was her, and by that time, I had no idea what was going on in her life, be it personally or romantically. Could you imagine how confused she'd be if I still had goofy pics of her and I was popping up on her Instagram sending them to her on her birthday? Even if I just said a simple HBD. I think she'd be scratching her head a bit. Not to mention, I'd feel pretty silly doing something like that. Maybe I'm just not as sentimental as some people are?

    I don't know...it just seemed a bit weird to me and really caught me off guard.

    I'm just curious to hear what others think.

    I have a co-worker who I'm close with, and we sometimes discuss our dating/relationship trials and tribulations. Even he said he's never had an ex wish him a happy birthday after the fact, and thought it was a bit weird for her to take the appoach she did. If she was so compelled to reach out on my birthday, why not just send the pics and say a simple "Hope you have a happy birthday, hope you've been well. Take care". Or something to that effect.

    Short, sweet, and to the point...not leaving the door open to conversation. In my opinion, the "take care" part is a polite way of saying you're just wishing them a HBD, but not actually wanting to talk. But then again, what the hell do I know?

  2. #2
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    I think she hit a rough patch with her new guy or a dry spell in her dating life, and reached out to see if you might still be interested.

    When things settled for her, with whatever guy she's currently seeing, she backed away from you quickly again.

    That's my read on it. Nothing complicated, but I would bet any money she didn't knock on your door again with a serious intention of reconciling. Sorry, man. I would not over-think this one.

  3. #3
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    She's just looking for attention. I mean, she screamed for attention when you made her the bottom of your priorities. When you broke up, she had to get attention with another app. But that fact that your post is super-duper long, maybe it's cathartic, or you still dig her. Either way, if you want to see her again, ask her out for real. She only broke up with you because you pretty much no longer made her a priority. I mean, you didn't see eachother for Xmas or NYE's (which I think is a sacred couple holiday; those who ring the New Year together, stay together (no including army fams)). So really, I don't seem it being amicable. Maybe you feel you didn't do anything wrong, but she doesn't see it like that.

    But if she doesn't make your heart sing now, chalk it up to attention seeking.

  4. #4
    Platinum Member Rose Mosse's Avatar
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    What an anti-climax. I'm not sure what it was but I'd hardly call that wishing someone a happy birthday. It was a cryptic flashback in visual format. My initial thought was that it's prank by a jealous lover she's currently seeing. In all likelihood, I think she's just playing with you. It's ok to reminisce and wonder. I agree this was probably cathartic for you. Don't be afraid to fall in love again with someone else... this is a gentle reminder that you ought to meet new people and grow out of this part of your life (it is ok to let go of her).

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  6. #5
    Platinum Member Cherylyn's Avatar
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    She sounds very unstable.

    When she sent you the "Happy Birthday" greeting, you should've just replied with a quick "Thank you" and that's it. Your long reply of: "I didn't think you'd be concerned about it at this point and let's grab a drink and catch up on life" was so unnecessary and upon reading your backhanded explanation, she was really done with you. Whenever you thank people, just thank them without being wordy otherwise it will backfire. Don't say nor write too much! Keep it short!

    I've heard of some couples who broke up whether married or not and they still remember each others birthdays. It's strange to be the recipient of a birthday greeting from an ex , however, you or anyone can still always remain polite and gracious. I hear stories of ex's remembering each others birthdays and reply with a quick, well-mannered: "thank you" and no more!

    Of course, the permanent NC route is the norm, however some ex's still remember birthdays. There's nothing wrong with that as long as there is respect, graciousness, brief "thank you" and leaving it at that until next year. It can be handled diplomatically.

    However, it was weird that your ex sent an over the top birthday greeting with emojis and pics of your last trip together. That was too much and really weird. She sounds wacky. Her birthday greeting should've been very brief such as: "Happy Birthday," hit send.

    'Take care' means take good care of yourself / wish you well. Something along those lines of sentiment.

    Don't obsess over this anymore. She's your ex and you've moved on with your life, have a new woman and relationship. Focus on that.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    It's very common to end up in the friendzone when it's over particularly when she has no feelings left and is with someone else. Just ignore it.


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