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When do you stop thinking about someone?

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Hey everybody,


I was reading through these threads the last few days and I had a question.


How do you deal with thinking of the ex-partner all the time? I mean, he just drifts through my thoughts constantly. It's been four months since we had contact and I think I have grieved pretty hard and also tried to do a real recovery kind of thing on this relationship. I have been seeing a counselor, reading books about healing our old losses and generally trying to work hard to work through this relationship. I have had some old relationships that were unmourned and so this time I felt like I was catching up with my tears, if that makes sense.


Anyway, I am not angry or revengeful. Mostly, I just feel sad and think of the the things I liked about him. It was a relationship of a few months and I thought he really liked me quite deeply and he was very sincere and kind but then - pouf! he disappeared. Did I chase him down and make him tell me what was going on? No, I just let the silence grow. Recently I let him know how I felt, that I liked him and felt glad to have meet him and also some changes in my life (a move) on an email.


I guess it's just one of those things, and I am feeling more resolved and like I am coming out the other side a better person. I suppose eventually I will stop thinking about him all the time. Sometimes, I wonder if people who do this ever think of the person they are doing it to. I mean, when you fade do you just walk away and stop thinking about the other person. Do you feel relief?


How do other people deal with the constant stream of thoughts of the other person? Because it was a 'fade' it also makes it hard to realise: whoa! this person is gone for good and they are not here because they don't want to be with you. (ouch ) I have to constantly watch myself on that. Not here = not coming back.

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Just have to fight it.


Its tough, but you can do it.


It took 2 years to stop thinking about an ex almost daily.


Like everyone says, just keep busy and keep your mind occupied.


You may never forget the person, but you wont feel sad when you do think of them.

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All I know to do is let time pass, and try not to let your work suffer.


As for when do you stop thinking about them? I still think about the one that broke my heart 9 years ago. But probably because I got no closure. She just stopped talking to me for no reason. Or at least none that she felt like sharing. So it's probably different for most people.

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It took me about a year to stop thinking about my ex daily (we dated for 4 and I ended the relationship)... and I completely felt the way you did. When is it going to stop?! What can I do?!


Things that helped me... I was actually able to have a conversation with him, which brought me great clarity. After that, it almost immediately stopped. But what I learned from the conversation (bc I don't recommend that to everyone) is that I was placing him and our past relationship on a pedestal that it should have never been on. I didn't even realize I was doing it until we talked. But once I realized that I was, it made it really easy for me to let him and the old "us" go. I'm not sure if this helps, but I would recommend (1) letting the process take its course and (2) take your thoughts of him and your relationship off any pedestals you might have.


It will stop eventually. I promise. It takes a little time. But it does eventually stop. Wanting it to stop helps because you're open to it. Slowly it will fade.

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If there was a cure for thinking about the ex too much, the person who found it would be a billionaire. It's not a pleasant situation to be in at all! It takes A LOT of patience (letting time do it's work) and self-control (avoiding thinking about the ex like it's the plague)!


Obviously, keep busy. If your mind is active with other things, there's less time for the ex to cross your mind. I'd especially stay away from activities that make you think of him however. Oh, and hide away reminders of your him, of course--it's impossible to get an ex out of your mind if his picture is staring at you all day.


On a side note, I find the subconscious somewhat interesting because often times I would fall asleep heartbroken, and waking up with a little more clarity. That was during a particularly rough breakup which involved me being the "clingy, maniacal nutcase." But everyday, I woke up feeling a little better, and after months I woke up one day feeling fine. Of course, sleeping away life 24/7 is not healthy, but sometimes the brain works through things better in sleep than ever. Adequate sleep is important. Just an observation.

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Thanks for the kind thoughts everybody. They are awesome.


I also agree about the sleep idea. I know we are not supposed to sleep to much and all, but in the past few months I feel like I have been enjoying my naps and sleeping in late. I am trying to process alot of old grief and feelings, and also to re-work old issues and behaviors and so when I sleep I do wake up feeling rested and somehow - a few steps ahead. This is especially true when I have been reading a book about "Fear of intimacy" (Robert Firestone), or something like that; when I drift off I am thinking about what I read and when I wake up - it is somehow more integrated into me.


When I was in graduate school I had a great professor who advised me to take small naps when I studied. He said that the neurons grew best when you're asleep, and when we are learning alot of new things (= growing new neronal connections), then this is most crucial. In other words, sleep really does help to cement new brain connections. We wake up with the new knowledge more integrated.


I wake up from sleep with a new insight, a new sense of understanding. So, yes! I totally agree about the gentle naps.

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I posted a thread about a week ago that was along similar lines to yours and somebody gave me some advice that really stuck out in my mind. And it essentially was that when you are trying to get over someone indifference should not be the ultimate goal. It is perfectly natural to think about / have an emotional response to someone, and indifference is simply a defense mechanism. The best advice is just to stay busy and feel your feelings, don't try to block them out because that will just bottle them up where they will probably grow even stronger. Deal with them and over time you will feel much better.

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All good advice here....and be grateful if you are able to sleep well, as many of us have issues with that for many months after the breakup. I think for me, keeping busy definetly helps. Running or some sort of vigorous exercise that forces us to get out of our heads. Being with friends, taking on projects or things that we neglected while we where in the relationship helps one to feel productive I think as well.


Writing really helps...writing to the ex (but not sending it, as in a journal or draft entry). It's like a toxin that keeps seaping out of us...we can't keep it in and we shouldn't. The thoughts are all part of the grieving. Don't fight it. Eventually, I know I got sick of it. I was just tired of giving her so much power and attention in my mind. That took many months. Some days were easier than others. Know you aren't alone, as I'm back on here after 2 years dealing with a recent breakup. And trying to not have those thoughts...

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