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question re: email to apologize/express forgiveness

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Hi everyone,


I have a question - so here's my situation. I was in a pretty serious relationship for about 8 months. We had a bad breakup. So bad, in fact, that I went through depression and repeatedly tried to email/call her to explain my perspective. She viewed me as a stalker (even though in my opinion, i wasn't) and got really angry at me for my inability to let go.


9 months later, I think we're both in better places. I feel much healthier now. We have lots of the same mutual friends, and it is often very awkward and full of tension when we are both at the same gatherings. I really want to simply make peace with her, and for both of us to get rid of any bitterness that will simply end up hurting ourselves, and I want to be friends with her in the future again.


I broke NC yesterday and sent her the following email:


"I want you to know that I forgive you for everything that has happened between us. I hope you will forgive me for the things I did wrong to you. I have forgiven myself as well.


I think I understand boundaries and separateness now. I know I can't worry about what you think of me, and I can't ever make you do anything. I never meant to hurt or wrong you, and I know you didn't mean to hurt or wrong me either. Breakups are always really hard and there are no easy solutions. I am sorry for things that I did that made life difficult for you.


I hope you won't harbor any bitterness against me. Past bitterness affects future relationships/marriage. When my ex-girlfriend cheated on me behind my back eight years ago, I broke up with her, and we never talked ever again. I forgave her in my heart, but I am sure the wound affected issues of control, trust, and insecurity in my next two relationships and led to failure and problems. I really don't want what happened to us to affect your future relationships in a similar way.


I would like to make peace with you, and I want you to be free before you leave for summer. You are totally forgiven and free!


Was this a mistake to break no contact, even for a genuine no-strings-attached apology? I really care for her and wanted her to know she's forgiven, hopefully so that we can both get on with our lives, so we both can be free of bitterness, and hopefully to lay the groundwork for a restored friendship someday. What do you think?

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I think it's a nice gesture. You seem to be very sincere about it, just don't be dissapointed if she doesn't respond.


I have been toying with this very same idea for a while with an ex of mine, very nasty breakup, lots of harsh words, fights, etc. You have given me something to think about here, maybe I will stop procrastinating and just do it.

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while i do think it is a nice letter, it may not be taken by the reader that way. i'm not sure what kind of personality you're dealing with, but some people who are angry at you would take offense to an email telling them "i forgive you". do you see what i'm saying? i think that since you are the one seeking forgiveness, asking for her to forgive you should have been pretty much it. i hope you understand what i'm saying. i get what you are trying to do - let her know that you hold no hard feelings, but i have found that this can go horribly wrong when a person thinks they are either not in the wrong, or somehow are less at fault than you are. but who knows...it may be taken well. i don't know the lady. good luck. glad you were able to forgive her.


obviously it all depends on what type of person you're dealing with. one of my exes was like "humph! YOU forgive me for what?!" he was a jerk anyway though.

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I think it's okay and if it's truly what it says - not some sly last ditch to get her to see you in good light so she migth come back... go for it.


My only suggestion I would have made is to reword how you worded "you are forgiven". And the last bit "you are forgiven and free", which by the smilie I assume is said kind of playfullly .. but it really sounds possessive. She doesn't need you to give her anything I guess I'm trying to say.


She may take it wrong, you don't know where she is with life or the breakup, but hopefully she understands and accepts it.

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i know the mantra for most of us on ENA is NC, NC, NC! And I'm surprised to hear some relatively positive responses to this letter. I would have thought everyone would have been like, "BIG MISTAKE! NEVER BREAK NC!"


the way I saw it, I've ruined all chances and everything was a mess. I know time heals all wounds, but I didn't like the idea of a big mess gradually fading away into apathy, leaving behind major scars for the both of us. I felt like I had nothing to lose, and I really do want peace and mutual forgiveness. Maybe 1% of me still wants reconciliation or getting back together, but I'm realistic now as she's made it obvious that she doesn't want to be part of my life. I wanted to show her i have no hard feelings and I don't hate her. Thinking that she might hate me is kind of painful, so I wanted to do my part in offering peace.


I wonder if that helps or delays healing for the both of us. All I know is that when I run into her and see her, and she still treats me like i'm invisible, it sort of prolongs my bitterness a bit. I want both of us to be bitterness-free and to move on, and I hope this email helped, not hurt.

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It's not a mistake I did the same with my ex. I sent her


"I just wanted to let you know that not everything I said was true. ------, you weren't a waste of my time. I learned a lot from you and I really do thank you for that. I wish you the best in everything you do and I hope true happiness finds you. I know that time apart and little contact is good for the both of us. You know, maybe one day we can talk. I did believe you but you've got to understand that it did look fishy. I'd hate for us to end on a sour note and I'm sorry I logged into your myspace, it's really none of my business. I do care about you and I really wish nothing but the best for you.






She wrote me back, twice, about an hour later saying,

"i just don't want to have any mean energy between us.

it makes me feel really sad.

i'll always care about you.

good luck to the both of us on the next stages of our lives."


and the other message said,


"thank you -----.

that brings me peace.


i hope the very same for you, true happiness.

that really means a lot to me."

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I think the best advice that's been said so far in responses to this was from Flywest29, who said it seemed like a nice gesture, but don't be disappointed if she doesn't respond.


If you did it for yourself, more power to you - letting go is hard to do, and this could be an important step for you. And ultimately that's what you're most responsible for: your own choices, actions, and reactions. But remember that it was for you, and not to elicit a reaction; find peace in having spoken your mind and moving on.


I wish you well and hope that it all works out however is best for both of you.


Light and laughter,


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