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Failing to get back together: the end of my story...


cl76

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I want to dedicate this post to a few cool people I've met here: Friendnorfoe, Brownstone, Siberia, Aglaia, Imabadman, Canali

 

Thanks guys, it's been a great journey.

 

As some of you will know, I've been championing the cause for winning ex's back. Truth is (most people who have recently broken up won't like this) that if you were in a long term relationship that suffered a "slow death" from a cancerous like emotional issue (neglect/neediness or loss of attraction), then your chances of winning back your ex are virtually zero in the short term. (Edit: it's different if you broke up because of something spontaneous like cheating).

 

I speak from experience here. I was with my ex for 1.5 years, we lived together and at one point had dreams of being married, buying a house and having children (I'm 32, she's 29 - it was a serious long term viable relationship). About six months ago things started to deteriorate but we kept trying. We became disconnected, our differences were just driving us apart slowly but surely and emotionally we just were playing charades. We broke up in mid March. I was particularly devastated.

 

I spent that time from then to now implementing a plan. This plan was one of massive self improvement that would maximise my chances of winning her back in 6-8 weeks. Yep I did all the research and worked diligently that whole time, maintained NC and did a tonne of stuff to heal and yes I became a new improved version of myself. I felt awesome and happy about myself! My confidence, self esteem and mojo all came back within 4-5 weeks.

 

I realised two things during this time: that NC is all about improving yourself (the dumpee) - not winning your ex back, and that happiness is the cure for all wounds NOT TIME. Thus, the need to get out there and live again.

 

This week I called my ex with the intention of arranging a quick meeting like a coffee. She sounded good, back to her strong self emotionally and over the break up guilt/pain. She was quite defensive also, not a good sign. Long story short - she told me that in no uncertain terms, she was not going back, that she was happy on her own and felt so much better about her life since the break up .

 

Now, no amount of bargaining, reasoning or pleading was ever going to change her mind. So after the phone call I felt extremely disappointed, yes for about 10 minutes afterwards I was inconsolable. But this isn't actually where the story ends. You see, during that time apart, like I mentioned before, I had been doing heaps of things to become happy again. One of those things was dating other people.

 

With the final word handed down - that reconciling was impossible, I was finally able to move on for good, the final chapter of the book had closed. With this knowledge I was able to finally put my efforts 100% into myself and finding a new love interest. Because of all the work I had done on myself my resilience was sky high and the sting of rejection was short lived. I can't stress enough how important it is to improve yourself during the initial NC period.

 

I did write her one final email though. Just to say that I accepted and respected her and her decision, that I was ok with it, to wish her the best and let her know that I have moved on and was looking forward to the future.

 

I guess what I'm trying to say (and what other's are probably implying) is that if you are in a long term relationship that fails, don't expect short term gains by doing NC. It will take a very long time for the damage to heal (to the dumper even a few months won't seem like any time has passed). In my personal opinion, reconciling should never be thought of as something that can be forced. That in fact, reconciling happens by chance, randomly, most of the time not ever, but if it does happen it's often years later.

 

Look despite the disappointment that being hit with a large reality stick might incur, it's actually not all bad. Seriously, you can find love again, and have all those special feelings for someone else like you had with your ex. I'm already starting to feel this with someone new and it's exciting! By doing a lot of work on yourself you should be in a very good position to move on - and you will love this new you, the new opportunity and freedom you will attain again once you learn to love yourself again.

 

The important thing is to take what you have learnt from your break up experience and use it to improve yourself and apply those improvements to your next relationship. Don't ever repeat your mistakes, learn from them, accept them, let them go, use them to become a stronger person. Don't feel that mistakes and losses hold you back, because they don't, they are actually necessary in your development in life (no matter what the arena is).

 

So, that's it from me, I'm signing off this forum. Will probably still lurk around from time to time but I think I will hang around the "Dating" forum instead! Much more interesting and fun stuff there - no more doom and gloom for me, I'm making a choice to be happy in life.

 

Best of luck to you all!!!!!

 

cl76

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Best of luck to you, man. I called my ex the other day too, and if she had reacted to me "in no uncertain terms" as she did to you, I'd be doing the same thing as you -- calling the relationship quits, at least for now. I'm a realist.

 

But all she said was that it's "too soon," which means that I have to stay in emotionally for the long haul. And you're right, it's gonna be a long haul. (But she and I have 19 years in, not 1.5 ... I'm not about to walk away from that.)

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Yeah, I completely agree with you. I've been the dumper and the dumpee and when I was the dumper, I never went back to any guy. Most of the time, when women are done, they're done. People sell a lot of hope here, and that's not bad, but people seldom get back together and when they do, it doesn't last very long most of the time. I know there are exceptions, but let's say people do not get back together 99% fo the time. Just enjoy the new person and move on. I like that you worked on yourself, that is a positive thing to do.

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Agreed. Mine failed too. Total of nearly 5 years invested. He has way too many issues that he simply won't work on, even when it starts to sink in that it might just be his problem. He'll say it, think about it, and then turn around and make it my fault.

 

No, if there's serious issues that are deeper than just an argument or disagreement with a potential resolution, I don't think it works either.

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Nice honest post, thanks.

 

I think eventually the dumpee doesn't want to go back. When you lose the shackles of a relationship and get used to being single again, life actually isn't that bad and in many ways it is far better, so no i won't step back into the past even if she begged. I'm grateful for what we had and am looking ahead with a glint in my eye.

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hey cl76, Glad that you took so much care of yourself during NC. What I've learnt most from NC is that it is the only way to learn to be happy by yourself again. The possibilities of what you can do is limitless--date, take classes, set goals, travel, become a better person, increase your emotional intelligence, learn a lot from past relationship. Ultimately, after a period of susbtantial NC, life becomes a better place to be in than after the break-up. We know that there is no method in the world to control someone's mind, least alone oyr ex's. We want them to be happy too. It will be awful if our ex were to come back to us and continue being unhappy. That will be a terrible waste of our life and their life. In fact, even if there was a magic pill that could make them change their mind, I'd much rather have them come back on their own volition, in their own sweet time, out of pure love, than through mind control. I do believe reconciliation happens, and people come back together, but only if the break-up has been complete and total and both parties have moved on completely without remaining in touch. Love is something you have to believe in. It has power and force beyond logic. But there is no short-cut to getting someone back.

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great post siberia. i agree with you. love is something you have to believe in. i make wishes on the stars at night that i will experience love again. i really hope i do. its definilty something you can not force. if our exes are coming back it has to be something they initiate on their own.

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I too have given up reconciling and am looking forward to THE REST OF MY LIFE waiting for me out there... the relationship and my ex are in the past and I will look back with fond memories but they are no longer a part of my life.

 

My plans and dreams may have changed but things are moving along swimmingly and I'm happy... In the three months plus since my split I have achieved far more than I ever did in the last two years. If I look back on those early days when things seemed so bleak, I can honestly say I'm at a much more peaceful place now.

 

Good on you cl76 for all the improvements you've made in your life and for the inspiration you've been to many of us...

 

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umm... good for you. I guess you haven't experienced the true "push pull" relationship where you even when you feel somewhat content with moving on you can't get over your exes. and you feel this vulnerability to them.

 

it doesn't have to do with a lack of self confidence, i think some of us just emotionally invest more than others. i wish i had what you had, allowing me to just "work on myself" and get over her. that doesn't work, because i've been "working on myself" since i was 16, and it doesn't work (at least it doesn't make her more attracted to me, yea it works for other girls, but what if that's not what i want?) i mean, i could have done nothing and still gotten chicks attracted to me since me and my GF broke up, and that's what's so frustrating. the reason people do NC/LC and do this program where they work on their selves is so they can impress their exes, not for others.

 

i know at least some of us have always felt confident alround the opposite sex, it's just when we get rejected we feel really bummed out by it and dont know what to do. building up the confidence to date other people is a lot different than building up the confidence to accept the fact that the women that deserves you doesn't want you anymore

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Yeah, I completely agree with you. I've been the dumper and the dumpee and when I was the dumper, I never went back to any guy. Most of the time, when women are done, they're done. People sell a lot of hope here, and that's not bad, but people seldom get back together and when they do, it doesn't last very long most of the time. I know there are exceptions, but let's say people do not get back together 99% fo the time. Just enjoy the new person and move on. I like that you worked on yourself, that is a positive thing to do.

 

Again another wild claim about the 'rarity' of people getting back together with no evidence or statistics to back it up.

 

Also the claim about when "women are done, theyre done" is another load of tosh. I've taken exs back.

 

Another piece of advice to be treated with caution. I've no statistics, but there's many a thread on these forums that cite people getting back together all the time if you take the time to search.

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Hi insecurefool,

 

I worked my butt off because I wanted my ex to see me changed in a different light - confident, feeling good, looking great/fit/healthy, better than anytime when we were together. Unfortunately it just didn't work. She didn't even want to see me so I could get a chance to work that angle.

 

I wanted to get her back, I seriously would give all my life situation as I know it and leave this town to start a new life with her someplace else. I wanted to have a life together with her, the works.. I tried to totally rework myself so she would see me as attractive again like when we first met - this was the whole strategy.

 

And yes even though I am more attractive to others through my efforts on improving myself, it did not make a slight difference what so ever to my ex. My ex repeatedly told me that there was too much bad history to want to go back there. No matter how much stuff I'd done to improve myself - she was completely unresponsive to my reasoning. This is because she is emotionally exhausted with me, there's just no way to make someone attracted to you when they have completely made up their mind to call it quits. It's simply impossible to force attraction and love.

 

"the reason people do NC/LC and do this program where they work on their selves is so they can impress their exes, not for others."

 

Unfortunately, I don't agree with this. NC/LC is about you healing yourself, not trying to win back your ex. It is through healing yourself that you can sway the ex to come to back to you if they sense you are changed and better than before (using PULL strategy). In which case, they were only borderline serious in breaking up with you. For some of us, especially when it's a woman leaving a man (because women leave men for different reasons that men leave women), the end is usually the end and that's all there is. Once their mind is made up and they feel better about their lives without you, it doesn't matter what you do, anything and everything you do to reconnect with them is percieved as a PUSH move. Better to respect their wishes, tell them you accept the break up, wish them the best and simply walk away, keeping your dignity. This will leave a good impression on them of your character.

 

Losses and mistakes are a part of life. You can brood over it or you can use the experience to strengthen yourself and make the next relationship more rewarding. As painful as it is, letting go and accepting the facts are incredibly difficult things to do. But until you do this, you won't ever get over the ex and this will be holding yourself back from enjoying some other things in life and possibly meeting someone else as good or better than your ex.

 

This is probably cold comfort to you. If you're still focussed on getting your ex back then nothing I say will help. I know it's hard, it hurts, but sometimes it just doesn't work out and you simply can't do anything to change it.

 

Take care of yourself.

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insecurefool,

 

I know what you mean. I have been in great shape, working toward great aspirations. Therefore, I felt like there wasn't much I could do for working on myself. I have had a lot of other girls show interest. They aren't my ex though. They don't have the sweetness and inner/outer beauty that she had. However, I realized that there were other aspects of myself that still needed work. For example, I had not been a very giving person. So now I'm joining charities. There's always some part of you that needs work. Unfortunately, these sorts of changes aren't easily visible to an ex, even if the lack of the change is part of the reason they broke up with you in the first place. This brings me back to the OP. If you slowly allow the realtionship to decay, w/o out consciously realizing it, then it does, I think, take a long time to get your ex back. The changes they need to see in you usually aren't easily visible. It makes me feel slightly hopeless regarding reconciliation in these cases.

 

I think cl76 makes some very good observations about women dumpers. Not to stereotype, but I feel like they are much more likely to stick their guns about a breakup. I think that partly stems from the nature of a woman's attraction to a man. Usually, the real attraction comes from getting to know the guy, trusting the guy, and then loving the guy on an emotional level. I think guys expect a lot less out of the emotional side... not saying we're superficial, but I think the emotional/inside attraction to a girl is easier to come by. So I think when girls break up with a guy it's because they lose that emotional connection and I think it is hard to get that back with a girl. I think it takes more than just trying a quick reconnection. I think it takes a renewed friendship before a full reconnection. I don't even think this is possible until long after the break.

 

Of course all of these the thoughts and obvservations would depend on the situation. Breaks because of a fight are a different story. However, I think like the OP, there are quite a few of us who slowly caused the break to happen. I think you have to pretty much lose hope in these cases and then if you can really become friends with an ex than maybe coincidently feelings on both sides will start to come back. These are just one man's thoughts.

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I think eight weeks is too soon for her to get over whatever hurts she feels arising from the relationship. However, I understand your wish not to wait around for her in case something better passes you by. Wishing you all the best for the future.

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Nice honest post, thanks.

 

 

But also painful for some of us.

 

It is very early days for me so I can't see that light at the end of the tunnel yet. Its quite ironic really as I stumbled accross ENA after breaking up with my ex-boyfriend which has left me devastated. However, when I met him I was 6 months out of a 12 year marriage and heartbroken. If he turned my life around then I should be confident that someone else can ... but for some reason I'm just not seeing it.

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"This week I called my ex with the intention of arranging a quick meeting like a coffee. She sounded good, back to her strong self emotionally and over the break up guilt/pain. She was quite defensive also, not a good sign. Long story short - she told me that in no uncertain terms, she was not going back, that she was happy on her own and felt so much better about her life since the break up "

 

Thats exactly what im afraid of, and it looks like that will be the outcome. She wasnt a relationship person really before me. we just fell in love and she always wanted to put school career first then relationship. Well now were done, and i think shes gonna enjoy this new found freedom, single like..indepenent more ...sucks bad. i hope not

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the reason people do NC/LC and do this program where they work on their selves is so they can impress their exes, not for others.

 

 

I don't think this is strictly true. I don't think it is about impressing anyone at all. What I do believe tho is that, when we first decide on NC, we hope that it will have an affect on our ex's ... that they are going to realise that we aren't actually there for them anymore and start to miss us and eventually want to come back. We bank on it. We imagine it. I think, as the dumpee, its only natural to feel this way as we weren't ready to let go. However, I think as we travel further into NC our opinions start to change. It becomes a journey of learning to let go. Its not all about getting them back anymore. It becomes about ourselves and finally we can start to look towards a future without them. At least I hope that is the case.

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I don't think this is strictly true. I don't think it is about impressing anyone at all. What I do believe tho is that, when we first decide on NC, we hope that it will have an affect on our ex's ... that they are going to realise that we aren't actually there for them anymore and start to miss us and eventually want to come back. We bank on it. We imagine it. I think, as the dumpee, its only natural to feel this way as we weren't ready to let go. However, I think as we travel further into NC our opinions start to change. It becomes a journey of learning to let go. Its not all about getting them back anymore. It becomes about ourselves and finally we can start to look towards a future without them. At least I hope that is the case.

 

Yes jellybaby41, this is exactly what happened to me.

 

I've been through all the pain, start to finish, don't think that I haven't suffered like anybody else here, I did... but my self improvement, which initially was aimed at making myself attractive to my ex and other women had the unexpected effect of healing me by making me happy with my accomplishments. Once you heal and love yourself again, the World becomes your oyster as they say. It's a great feeling

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thank you for this wonderful, inspirational post cl76.

 

It is just what I needed to read. All the things you said, I hope I will experience and feel too, soon. I have a lot left to learn and improve and I still want to keep growing as a person, but all of what you have said is exactly where I want to be. A better person, happy with myself, yet happy to take knocks on the chin every now and then to ensure I keep growing as a person and not stagnating and wallowing in limbo. You give every one of us here hope.

 

I admire you. Best of luck with love and life!

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Good luck for the future cl76, we all get there in the end one way or another.

 

I am liberated from negative feelings for previous exes and so will I be from my recent ex. I think it takes time and happiness for this to happen. I actually don't see the point in trying to ask her out once she returns from holiday, I want to but what's the point?

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Yes jellybaby41, this is exactly what happened to me.

 

I've been through all the pain, start to finish, don't think that I haven't suffered like anybody else here, I did... but my self improvement, which initially was aimed at making myself attractive to my ex and other women had the unexpected effect of healing me by making me happy with my accomplishments. Once you heal and love yourself again, the World becomes your oyster as they say. It's a great feeling

 

Good on you!! That is inspiration for us all

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great posts in here everyone. my initial post was a little presumptuous and my apologies for that, i was a little under the influence and upset. but I think everyone has made great comments. we're all learning here. good luck.

 

 

I think we can all understand what that feels like!! And yes we are all learning and, in turn, helping others to learn. Go ENA!!

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Cl76,

 

Thank you for this post. It's great, and I enjoyed reading it. I'm glad you're on the right track, and I think you're making the best decision to just leave that relationship behind completely.

 

I'm sort of in the same situation. Two weeks into the breakup, my ex told me he was happier and better off alone, and that he would never come back to me--unless he was 30 years old and wanted to have a serious relationship. That's when I knew it was done, and I couldn't waste anymore time (though, I did for another week or two, but still...)

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