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Dumped a month ago, it was my fault -- Trying to decide what's best to do now

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Hi everyone... I've been a lurker on this board for the past month, since my breakup. The posts and comments here have helped me through some rough times (wanting to break NC, feeling down about myself). I realized last night that I'm at a point where instead of desperately wanting my ex back (I've been reading aaaaall of the breakup experts' websites, gah) I'm weighing whether to just move on and make NC permanent versus eventually reaching out. Part of it stems from feeling disheartened that he hasn't reached out to reconcile, and while I know it's barely been any time since the breakup (why does a month feel like forever?!?!) I wanted your advice because I feel like I'm at a crossroads with a clear head and better control of my emotions post-breakup.


The cliffnotes version:


-I'm in my early 30s, he's in his late 20s (six year difference); I'm not his first relationship but definitely his first "really serious" one; I'm close to his parents etc

-We met because we work together and still do (!) although thankfully his group relocated to a different part of the building (our offices were next door to each other when we started dating) a month before the breakup, so at least we rarely have to see each other.

-We were together ~8-9 months, since last spring/summer. We were friends first, and he was actually my first friend when I moved to his city to start at his company

-He dumped me. Out of left field. In front of his mom. Right after we had a lunch date with his parents. She cried. I cried. I was heartbroken and stormed off crying. My one big mistake was to go over to his place at 4 in the morning that night (we had keys to each other's places) and climb into bed with him and cry and ask to be held. He was utterly stone cold and cruel to me that night, and texted the next day asking for his keys back. I left 'em on his desk at work that Monday (breakup was over a weekend) before he had even gotten in)

-We've interacted twice or three times in person since then (broke up March 11th). A couple weeks after the breakup (and I unintentionally was doing NC) we bumped into each other as we were leaving work, went back to his place and had dinner, and had ex sex (he initiated, cuddled me, said it was a mistake afterward... but told me how much he loved me and how he now felt platonic about me and wanted to be alone and figure out his own stuff yada yada the usual BS). The second time we hung out was a week and a half later for a friend's event (I didn't go with him; the only reason I went was that it was a graduation event). We were civil and very friendly, he was almost flirtatious -- I stayed for an hour, had a drink or two, kept up the best "I'm great!" poker face, and headed out without saying goodbye to him etc. He did text me the next morning, asking if I'd gotten home okay.

-Since then? Total text silence. He came up to me in the lobby of our building (where I was studying) one afternoon last week when he saw me from across the room, and chitchatted about work for a few minutes before he was like, "Okay, I'm heading out to drink with [mutual friends of ours]."


The postmortem:


I KNOW he broke up with me because I was being clingy, needy, insecure and controlling. When we started dating, he knew I had residual trauma from an abusive marriage to a guy who cheated on me, and he was my first post-divorce relationship that I wasn't expecting. My behavior got worse the more serious we became because I had learned behaviors from getting hurt so badly in my last serious relationship. I take the blame for the bulk of this breakup -- I was pretty anxious and awful sometimes. But he used to tell me during our entire relationship that he wasn't going anywhere and would be there for me until I got over my issues. I get the real reasons why he dumped me because we have SO many friends in common (and they've all remained my friends), and one of his close male friends reached out to me a couple weeks ago to see how I was and to fill me in on what was going on in my ex's head. The things he pointed out to me, that I've been mulling over are:

-my ex told his guy friends that I was the love of his life, and he'd never been this serious about a girl. This was even reasonably close to the B/U point -- not like he'd been thinking about dumping me for months.

-my ex is an "all or nothing" kind of guy, stemming from his own parents' terrible, rocky marriage. His dad left his mom after a string of affairs so he's never learned to put in work or commitment to something and assumes relshps should be easy. We did fight and argue sometimes, but (I've had more LTRs than he has) what felt like an ordinary amount for a relationship, and we had a lot of really, really good times. Hell, we had dinner with friends the night before he dumped me, and I remember him holding me in bed telling me how much he loved me that night.

-We had one huge fight (our first explosive one) the week before he dumped me, and he did say he wanted to break up then, I talked him out of it an hour later, and the week "interim" was pretty normal (no crazy fights) before the big ending. Was he thinking of breaking up during that whole week? I don't know. Maybe, but probably not all the time because he was relatively normal/affectionate in a way I don't think people can fake, but I'm not a mind reader.


Behaviors which I'm trying to weigh in the pro/con lists (i.e., what are the chances he'll want to reconcile?):


-He packed away all of my stuff in his apartment and put it in boxes in his closet, but hasn't given my stuff back in the past month. Ditto photos of me that he had up on walls/fridge -- he took them down and the friend mentioned my ex had stacked them on a bookshelf in the corner of his living room. Other than my tossing his keys on his desk, we've had no exchange of stuff

-Since the breakup, my ex has been out drinking and partying 4-5 nights a week. He was kind of a party animal before I dated him and he (admittedly for me) toned down a lot while we were together to do things like watch tv and cook and go for hikes together. He also installed Tinder like... four days after dumping me and has been trying hard to meet new girls (that one stung to hear!!!) but hasn't actually dated anybody yet. He's had pretty low success getting women to date him before me, and often claimed that he was shocked I agreed to go out with him after he pursued me and how many of his friends told him how lucky he was. (This isn't to sound egotistical -- I'm not a great girlfriend. Just to point out that he valued me highly for most of our relationship, and acknowledged that he'd never had a woman who treated him well and loved him so much).

-In the 4 weeks since the breakup, he's been.... hot and cold, mostly cold? with his behavior. 2 weeks of silence, "The DO NOT HAVE THIS CONVO conversation / hookup," with him aaactively avoiding me in the hallways at work before and after that. He randomly liked posts/photos on my Facebook and Instagram (we did not unfriend/block/unfollow each other), and he's sent me a few Snapchats but they appeared to be more of the general / group snap variety. Oh -- I also got 2 texts the morning of a big event I had the week after the B/U, wishing me luck and asking how I did. NO drunk dials (amazing given how much he drinks lately), no "I miss you" texts, nothing.

-On my end... I've been practicing NC / pretty much NC. I've NOT initiated a single text, call, message, smoke signal or mail pigeon since the day after our "conversation hookup night." I have not liked or commented on a single thing he's posted on social media. I do chime in and comment infrequently on a couple of group texts friends have sent that included both of us (ie, 6 or 7 people in a text thread and I'll reply to the friend who asked a question). I have not posted anything sad or weepy, and have been careful to keep my social media upbeat and as if I'm totally unaffected by the breakup. He has not taken down posts or pictures of us/me, though he did remove his relationship status (he never had one up before me, so it said "in a relationship" while we were together and now he doesn't have a status at all). Other than a couple close friends whom I know are discreet (the one male friend who filled me in above told me he -- of his own volition because he likes me more than any of my ex's previous girlfriends!! -- tried to get my ex to talk to me and patch things up because he feels we have so much potential and broke up over an immature reason).

-I had started therapy (CBT) over my ex-husband's abusive behaviors the week before we broke up, although I wish I'd done this a year ago. Too little too late to save this relationship, but I've continued with it through the breakup and (hindsight being 20/20) see how MUCH I pushed my ex, and how I really had nothing to worry about in this relationship. I'm in therapy for me, for my own happiness and to keep this from happening in any and all future relationships... but if we reconciled I'd definitely stay in therapy as well. I feel more like myself, like the girl he first met (and the girl from years ago, before my bad marriage).




Sorry if that was so long! My questions to people in this forum are:


1. Objectively, how poor/good are our chances to reconcile? After hearing that he's actively been trying to meet women on Tinder, I felt like I should give up contemplating making up as an option, because he's obviously not sitting at home pining after me. If he really missed me, he'd be reaching out to me beyond a few Instagram and Facebook photo likes.


2. Does my behavior change (i.e., deviate from NC with polite responses if we bump into each other) if I decide I want to attempt getting back together vs getting over him? The relationship guides mention reaching out after a certain period of NC. While we've been broken up a month, it's really only been 2 weeks of strict NC (sans HIM approaching me to make small talk last week) because we went out with friends two weeks ago. Do I need to give him more time to miss me? I'm at the point where I know I don't need him in my life and will be fine without him... but we were very compatible, close, and I miss many things about him that I did not have with any of my other relationships. If we had never dated, he would have been my best friend regardless -- I can't be "just friends" with him after our relationship, so it's going to be reconcile or cut the ties, unfortunately.


3. For any of you who had been in similar(ish) situations -- what helped your ex (the dumper) come around? I smothered him toward the end of our relationship so I'm giving him the gift of my absence in heaps. Not sure what else to do.


Any other advice welcome! Although due to the nature of this forum, I'm slightly biased toward hearing advice about getting back together. I miss this guy. I miss our friends, his family, the many little things we shared. Thank you all so much. This place has been really good to me as a lurker.

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This is Way Too Much drama for dating only 8 mos. Go completely and permanently no contact and delete and block him from social media and messaging contacts. At work be polite, professional and avoid him if possible. he was too immature for you.


Get on some dating apps with a good profile and pics and start talking to and meeting men. Don't date coworkers and date in your own age group/life stage.

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