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Communication after a break-up

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HI! This is my first time writing on these things after spending many years reading them for advice. I need some really good input here because I am at a loss here.


A quick background on the scenario: I am a 24 year old girl my ex is a 25 yr old male. We began dating when I was 20 and he was 21. Our relationship has been on and off since then. We broke up 3 times and go back together.


We have always had communication in between us dating and it was obvious he always tried for us to work out again. I had another boyfriend in between for a few months but recognized it was a rebound and ended it shortly after.


This past go around of us dating for 5 months he flat out told me he didnt know what he wanted and wasn't sure if he loved me. I saw the signs of him not being as into as he was and felt hurt and ended it this past Dec. He begged and begged saying he loved me and was just nervous I didnt love him and now he knows that I do, He wants it to work and will do anything.


Well long story short I felt anxiety ridden and like he wasn't into me either ( he would still have contact with his ex all the time, he said talking on the phone daily wasnt for him)



I finally faced it and asked him what he wanted he said I sounded like I wanted to break up. I cried and said fine, because I didnt feel happy and knew it wasnt what he wanted.




Since we broke up feb 23rd 2009 He has emailed me twice asking how I am and texted me asking how I was. I didnt write back because I feel as though A. I have nothing to say to him. B. I am working so hard to get over him and get back to myself and feel good about me C. Pist off over the pain I went through to get over him the 3rd time around.


This morning I woke up to a letter from him: UGH! He basically wrote me a closure letter I guess..speaking of memories of us in love at 21 and what a feeling it was, telling me he has no ill feelings toward me and then saying he realizes we were both exhausted and frustrated in the relationship but very happy we have shared these memories. It went on a little but was for the most part very mature.


I have no idea how to feel or what to do. My one roomate says I owe to him to write back because I look kind of * * * * * y if I dont. My other roomate just says do what I feel.


I do not know whether to continue feeling pretty good and get over him, but do not want him to hate me for not communicating with him.


Do I write him back saying I received your letter thank you and agree it was nice what we had...if I do that I am nervous he will continue communication and that will * * * * with my head and illude me to thinks that arent there.



I know we dont work why can't he know that too but not pop up every so often. I love and care about him but he muddles my mind.



I know this is long I apologize, but any advice whether or not I am coldhearted or doing the right thing?



he also wrote he does not have an emotional on/off switch..which he sees me to have i guess...but that is also the reason why he is unable to get his ex gf out of his life, which always hurt me.


Bottom line it is a bad match, but I do care about as a person and do not want to regret ignoring him.



Any suggestions?


If you read this whole thing and wrote back...THANK THANK YOU.

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I dont see anything wrong with replying "thank you, I agree we had a great relationship, but its time to move on" or something to that effect. I, myself would have a hard time just ignorning an ex completely UNLESS the relationship was abusive or he was a cheater etc..he might just want some kind of closure.


If you know 100% you guys aren't good for eachother, reply acknowledge you got the email - but end it at that. If he sends you anything after - ignore it. That's my 2 cents.

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I agree with Ac, I would also have a hard time just ignoring someone too.


On the other hand, if you really don't feel like writing back or having any further contact with him then don't feel like you have to. You can always give yourself some time to get over this first and write to him further down the line.

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I would have the same dilemma and hope to gain perspective from the answers folks give you here.


Which choice makes you feel stronger? That's your first priority, put your own needs first, not out of greed, but out of need for self-care. (Ok, that will be my advice to myself, too.) Be kind to yourself, whatever you do.


I understand when the other is being nice, and you both want to be mature about it, it seems like the thing to do is to be nice back, as if everything were normal. But I am learning that even though the exchange can feel fine and friendly, the after-effect can be unwanted emotional turmoil.

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I would not ignore it if i were you...it is good to give it some closure. Thank him for the message and for what was good in the relationship..and if you are afraid he will see this as a start for further communication. Then just tell him open and honestly that your response is not in any way an invitation for further contact, that you need to be by yourself and heal from the pain and confusion your relationship has caused you. Maybe someday you will be able to be friends again, but for now it is best to go with love and your separate ways..and you hope that this time he will respect this.


Should he still respond THEN you go completely NC..you dont have to respond to him anymore.


However..if you hope to reconcile with him at one point. It is best to make it clear also what needs to happen for you in order to have a relationship. As long as that does not happen...you are in NC.

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Thank you for all the advice. I am surprised how many people are going for the "write him back" way.


For some reason the only way for me to feel better, stronger and get over someone- is go cold turkey..no contact..no text..no nothing. Its weird because I am a pretty emotional person but NC works best for me.


I read "Its a breakup because its broken" which I totally recommend (The author came to my school and gave excellent advice.


I am following this "NC for 60 days" commandment in the book! I am at day 45 and think when I am at day 60 I will then see how i feel and write a letter of closure back to him and send it to him apt in Albany. I will send it to him because it me sending my feelings and asking nothing back. I dont want to talk to him and I dont want him associated with my email account.



I suppose I am a little bitter, which stinks. I suppose I am disappointed in the love dying. And the idea of him and I..that I had for so long.



Thank you again for all the helppul and insightful advice.


Hopefully one day I meet someone who is right for moi

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broken- Yes that is in my plan. If I write this letter and then mail it...that is my thank you and closure- if he weites me back, no need to write back or feel bad about no contact.


I reallly realllly want to have my own life and feel in control of me and my life.


I didnt feel great about myself when i wa swith him the last 6 months bc i was so focused on what he wasnt doing right in the relationship and why him and I werent working



I think I need this time to find myself again. Be happy because I have inner happiness not love from someone else. And then maybe love someone again.



I dont know HOW people go through divorces. I am not very good at this relationship thing...


I often wonder if it is my fault and I will never have a successful relationship, but hope it is because it isn't the right match

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Ac - I think you are correct...no harm done in saying thank you, and showing im not that cold hearted. Do you think waiting 15 days to do it is too long?


Too long? I dont think so...but that depends on you & how you feel about the whole situation. If you want to complete the 60 day NC challenge & then send a reply, go ahead. But Im wondering what's the difference if you do it now or in 15 days?


Do you ever want to get back together? Or are you 100% thru with this relationship?

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It is hard when a relationship goes back and forth and back and forth to truly feel it is over forever. Ive said it is over forever and it has not been.

I want it to be over because I dont want to feel the hurt and pain frustration and exhaustion we bring each other.

When he pops in my life i still hope he wants to be with me, which isnt good. Because deep down I know him and I will not work and are not made for each other.


Waiting the 60 days is about doing something I said I would do, to prove it to myself, and then sending the email is about giving him and I closure.


but in all honesty I think I need a long time to go to really get over him. I think the best way for me is absolutely no contact.



Why can he be in contact with me and feel okay with it?

Is it rude if I dont contact him until I feel over it?

I have never felt so confused about what the right option is...


I feel like all these thoughts are making me backslide..

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Why can he be in contact with me and feel okay with it? - He probably thinks its truly not over because of all the back and forth which in all honesty is very unhealthy & emotionally draining!

Is it rude if I dont contact him until I feel over it? no of course not, do what is best for YOU.

I have never felt so confused about what the right option is...


I feel like all these thoughts are making me backslide..


See above....


After reading your last post, it seems like you are not ready to reply & that's ok. Logically you know you two shouldn't be together, but you aren't emotionally strong enough yet to not fall back into this cycle. If that's the case, I would hold off contacting him UNTIL you are 100% ready to let go. Its not rude not to reply especially if you know it will hurt you I.E go back and forth yet again. Do what's best for you dont worry about what he feels or anyone else.

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Hey Ac.


I really admire you. I admire you for different reasons. one because you are a great listener, that is something I am working on. I also admire you because although you are happy and on your way to getting married you realize what is necessary when one is not happy. Thank you so much for looking at my situation many times and extending such helpful advice. I am home on college break. I guess its important to know that my ex and I have always been a long distance relationship. I was home visiting and he imed me last night saying hope you have a good holiday i sent you a letter a few days ago.I blovked his sn and did not answer. I not longer feel bad about NC or replying. Eventhough some say the not replying is selfish and * * * * * y. I look it as i have to do me. Ive stayed contact with him for the last 3 years broken up on and off. I, looking back Ive havent REALLY been living. I been half living, No any activity I do whether its conversing with a friend or parent or playing w my sister or brother, i am fullheartedly doing it. it feels full, not like my mind id half there..half attactached to my ex. I just know its the right decision to not speak to him. He knows deep down I dont hate him and that this is what we need. He need to get over this too- and he will but we cant move on together.


and as for people who say i need to give him closure or it, as he did with this letter. I dont need closure. My closure comes from within and its getting there. I cant worry about if he needs closure by me saying thanks for the letter, please dont talk to me anymore ect. Him iming me shows me he doesnt want closure, he wants random communication. you were right...He expects us to go back and forth because it is what we always did.



Sorry this is exhaustingly long. I was spitting my thoughts out. It feels cleansing.



I am so happy you are happy. Thank you thank you thank you.


Your words are inspiring!

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Thanks katalinak! I was in your situation before, not exactly the same, but close to it. I had an ex I was back & forth with. It was an emotional roller coaster for me, the first few times we broke up all I wanted was for us to get back together....that's ALL I lived for. The very last time I felt like you I didn't want him to reach out to me and/or I didn't want to contact him because I knew we weren't good for one another YET I knew I wasn't strong enough to say "enough is enough". Im not sure if you're ex will contact you again, but mine did until I broke & had to reply to him. One thing I remember is I felt like crap for giving in again. It took a lot of strength, but eventually I did move on & I did ignore him. Like I said before, do whatever it takes to make yourself feel good. Forget about him, he's not your BF anymore - you dont have to make him feel good.

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