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Feeling strange and uneasy about a recent discovery


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About a month after my ex broke up with me, he came by to pick up his stuff. One of the boxes included all of our dishes, pots and pans, and kitchen items from our old apartment. I figured he would just end up throwing them out anyway, but I wanted to give him the chance to go through it incase there was anything he wanted or needed. There was also a box of personal stuff that I was pretty sure he would want to keep.. his books,movies,dvds,some clothes etc etc. In that box was also a mug that I gave him. It was part of a set and I had the other half and we always used to drink out of them together. It was his favorite mug and I thought he'd want to at least keep that one so I took it out of the other box that I was pretty sure he'd just throw away and put it in the keep box.

 

I recently found out that after he picked up that stuff, he dropped off the box of pots and pans at our old roommates place so she could go through it and see if she wanted anything. For 3 months it just sat at her apartment before she went through it. I was over there the other day, and opened her cabinet and saw some of my old cups, plates and bowls... and that special mug that was seperated from all the rest... in an entirely different box.

 

Opening that cabinet felt like a punch in the gut.

 

I know that you're all gonna say. That it was just a material thing... that he probably didnt want anything that reminded me of him... that it doesnt matter... it's just a cup... That I shouldnt make a big deal about it. That I shouldnt have gotten upset over something like this... that I'm being ridiculous

 

But it hurts. It made me realize that he was done with me when he came and got his stuff. He didnt want anything to do with me after that month. That he didnt want to be reminded of me, or have any piece of me in his life. That he could just throw away something that meant so much.

 

To me that cup symbolizes how he chose to end our relationship.

 

I dont really know why I'm posting this. It probably will seem so insignificant to most of you. I dont really need advice. I guess I just needed someone to listen.

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I'm sorry... i know it is so painful...

 

but some people really want to cut out ALL reminders of their former relationship, because it is painful to them to think about it. So they just throw away or give away everything that is a reminder, because that is the only way they can deal with it emotionally.

 

So it doesn't mean you didn't once mean something to him, and more likely means he didn't want any painful reminders that you were over with.

 

I had a similar experience to this, where when i was dating my ex-husband, i wrote him all these love letters because we lived apart... they were very private, personal, and sexy, and I later found out he was reading them to his brothers and sisters like they were the newspaper or something rather than somethign private between us. Also, once he's read them, he just threw them away! I was really upset by both his sharing our intimate communication AND tossing them like they meant nothing to him.

 

But really, if someone truly loved you enough to stay with you, they would keep such things. It's sad, but another indication that the breakup was the right thing. I eventually came to the conclusion that my ex and i were quite different if he didn't even realize how private those letters should have been rather than fodder for his whole family, and that he also didn't want to keep them. I was casting my pearls before swine so to speak.

 

It could be very healing for you to just take that mug, and take it somewhere and say your private goodbye to him, then toss it in the river or smash it as a freeing gesture for yourself. I know many divorced people who do eventually burn their old love letters or get rid of all reminders, just so they can let go and move on. Perhaps it would be something to consider for you, to take back your love, and be ready to give it to someone new who would really appreciate it.

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Actually, I can really relate to what you say here. That 'jolt' as the reality hits home, and the implication that he's left you and everything associated with you, very firmly in the past. Of course it's not about a mug. It's about what the mug represented, it's about feeling devalued and as though you can just be given away.

 

Who knows what's going on for him? Possibly he may not have been that attached to the object in the first place, and giving it away may not have been as deeply symbolic as you have taken it.

 

Whatever, remember that this does not in any way negate the relationship you actually had back then, or devalue it - hold on to that thought.

 

That said, I think I'd have felt the same in your shoes. I can understand totally why you wanted to share.

 

(((HUGS)))

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You didn't pick through what you wanted and gave it all to him, so you can't control what he did with the stuff. You perhaps should have given his personal items and either chose what else to give him or asked what else he wanted. It is up to you if you want to ask the roommate for stuff back.

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I dont really know why I'm posting this. It probably will seem so insignificant to most of you. I dont really need advice. I guess I just needed someone to listen.

 

Not at all, I totally get what you are feeling. I'd feel the same way if I found out this happened. I dread ever knowing something like this. The symbolism of the mug really hits home, probably for most of us. Hope you are doing okay.

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You didn't pick through what you wanted and gave it all to him, so you can't control what he did with the stuff. You perhaps should have given his personal items and either chose what else to give him or asked what else he wanted. It is up to you if you want to ask the roommate for stuff back.

 

i think you misunderstood. I didnt want any of those things and I dont care that he gave them to our former roommate... I wasn't gonna use them and he wasn't gonna use them, so id rather her have them then have it all go in the garbage. When I gave it to him, I thought he would probably just throw it all out. I knew he probably wasn't gonna go through it anyways so I took the one thing from that box that I thought he would want to have and put it in a separate box with the stuff I knew he would be keeping.

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Milk, this is the first thing the book Uncoupling teaches you. Every uncoupling begins with a secret. The secret is the initiator is unhappy. From that moment on, the momentum of goodbye begins and usually, long before the person being left behind knows there's even an issue, the initiator has detached completely. He was gone before he ever picked up those boxes.

 

You put significance on those mugs and the simple joys of being with him. He put more significance on himself than anything. That is the cold, hard truth.

 

Now, girl, plan how you're going to live a full, abundant life without him and take that first step tonight. Make him look back and think of you as the girl who got away. That can be your revenge.

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My friend told me that she uses that mug all the time now and it's her new favorite, so I'm just gonna let her hold on to it I guess. I didnt ask for it back.

 

I think it's hard for me because I have pretty much gotten rid of everything that reminds me of him and have put almost everythign away in storage. If you look around my room, theres only 2 things from my former relationship sitting around.... a sleeping bag he gave me and the other mug that goes in the set. I should really put it away. It's just sitting on my dresser, staring at me.

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I understand why this would hurt. It's almost feels like a validation that they don't care anymore that they don't want to hang on to the memories of those good times together. Like they have no regrets moving forward, and don't want to be burdened by the past. No real words of wisdom for you. I feel like my ex tossed out everything from our life together by moving 15 hours away, so I understand how it feels to feel all your memories and good times have been discarded. Kind of makes you feel like you are that mug he gave away, huh?

 

Honestly though, you may be attaching to much meaning to a material object that may not have ever had that much emotional meaning to him anyway.

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I am sorry you are going through this. I know it feels like a stab in the back in some ways and realization that he didn't care, sometimes it's better that we not know where things are.

I actually came accross a ring my ex got me for my birthday and it just felt like a major stab in the heart, I just couldn't put it on. I sat staring at it for a good hour until I decided it was time to put it away where I couldn't see it.

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Honestly though, you may be attaching to much meaning to a material object that may not have ever had that much emotional meaning to him anyway.

 

more than likely, that's probably the case. My ex rarely attached meanings to phsyical objects and he never really had a problem throwing out things. There a few items that he would never dream of throwing out or giving up, but i guess that mug just wasn't one of them.

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Yes I do understand how you feel. My ex had an email address that he gave me the password to. At some point after the breakup I went into the email. He had a folder in there with all the emails/pictures I had sent him. There were tons of meaningful emails in there. He had deleted the entire folder. I was crushed.

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I met up with my ex just after Christmas for the first time since we split in July. He suddenly noticed that I still had the phone he had given me as I had given him my upgrade so that he could get a touchscreen. He seemed shocked to see it and blurted out "Oh, you still have that phone?" I noticed he had gone back to using his old Nokia and since then I have been trying really hard not to think about what he did with my engagement ring and the other rings I gave back to him if it was genuinely shocking to HIM that an ex would keep anything that the other had given to them

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