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Moving to same city as ex. Should I let him know?


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No.

Why do you feel any need to contact him?

He has moved on well.. and so have you.

 

IF you ever run into him.. maybe say HI and move on. No more expectations.

 

I am sure in time your Ex;s sister may say something to him anyways... since you are in contact.

Either way.. if she does or doesn't. I see you have been told much the same. Leave it all alone..

YOU are in your own relationship... Let sleeping dogs lie.

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I genuinely thought alerting him of my move would be a courtesy; now I realize it’s just deeply inappropriate. I appreciate you all for pointing that out.

 

I don't mean to sound unkind, but I think you're over-estimating your importance to him. It's safe to assume that if he has ceased all contact with you, he would be indifferent to you moving there and thus have no need to be informed.

 

So yes, it's best not to. You have some unresolved emotions about this man and your break-up, so reaching out is just not wise. He seems to have long moved on so it's best you really do so, too.

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I'd reach out. You're over him, I assume he's over you. The only way I wouldn't is if feelings might still be involved (do you think they might still be present on his end? That might explain the silence after he got married). It's up to him if he wants to respond of course.

 

Maybe simplistic but if I want to do something I do it. If I don't, then I don't.

 

(of course, I'm single too. If I was still married maybe I'd feel differently??)

 

To do this would be messing with other people's lives in ways that could be really harmful. My guess is that when he married, he and his wife likely discussed relationship boundaries, and decided that communicating with exes was not going to be good for their union.

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This has been a good lesson for me, so thank you guys. I didn’t realize how ego-driven all of this has been for me. I think I’m just smarting from being written off and crave validation; it’s a trend of mine that extends far beyond this particular ex. I’m a people pleaser. I have placed more importance on my moving near him than is actually warranted; people, after all, break up all the time and move on while staying in the same city the whole time. It’s dumb to think this would be any different. I appreciate some of you for helping me see that. Even though it’s a bit of a bitter pill to swallow: that I’m just egotistical and not that important at all (to him, anyway). But why does that even matter? It doesn’t.

 

I do have other stressors in life that are substantially more pressing than this; this whole ex thing is just a welcome distraction to avoid focusing on the other things that I have no control over. Mental masturbation? Ugh, it’s no fun to look in the mirror sometimes.

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I genuinely thought alerting him of my move would be a courtesy

 

This is an eyebrow-raising turn of phrase that should cause you to examine your motives.

 

'Alerting' someone as a 'courtesy' is like saying that the playing field is now level because they've been warned.

 

That's what "alert" means: a warning: "There is a potential threat to your marriage nearby. You've been warned. If you don't heed the warning, whatever happens next is on you."

 

No need to alert someone if there is no imminent danger to avoid.

 

Common courtesy is to say a brief "hello" and move on from potential chance encounters.

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Even though it’s a bit of a bitter pill to swallow: that I’m just egotistical and not that important at all (to him, anyway). But why does that even matter? It doesn’t.

 

That's a question that is worth examining.

 

Why does this man still matter so much to you?

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That's a question that is worth examining.

 

Why does this man still matter so much to you?

 

He doesn't matter, not really? I'd never want to be in a relationship with him, or even some sort of sordid affair. I have wished we could remain friendly, but that's the extent of it. And I'm realizing, FINALLY, how misguided even that is.

 

Truth is, I'm still pretty angry at MYSELF for focusing a huge chunk of my 20s on him, derailing my career for years. One example: I once turned down a great job offer in a different city because of my attachment to him, and took a lousy job that was ill-suited (during a recession, no less) for me locally just because I was desperate to make it work. I won't take complete blame. He emerged from the woodwork just as I went out of town for the interview, and he told me he wanted to marry me, blah blah. So I turned it down and stayed in the original city for him — just to have him change his mind for the millionth time.

 

That was just one instance of being wanted and then rejected; I fell for it over and over until I finally did just up and move across the country. That was the best thing I've ever done for myself. But clearly I still haven’t shaken the habit I had of constantly going back. I’ve been chasing a feeling of validation and a feeling of closure from him, but intellectually know it’s got to come from within. That's the hard part.

 

I don't blame my ex for not wanting to be with me, though. As I said earlier in this thread — we were very mismatched, in terms of personalities, priorities, and lifestyles. But I was addicted to the physical and emotional chemistry of the situation (I think he had to have been, too… why else would he allow for such damaging recidivism? Or maybe thinking that is part of the problem), and if I'm being honest, it's a high I still miss.

 

I love my husband tremendously, but the routine and stability of marriage — and the stress and heavy responsibility of it all — just doesn't always compare to the exquisite pain and pleasure of making up and breaking up. It's unhealthy, I know it. But there was a simplicity back then that I am nostalgic about, I guess. That said, I swear I'm self-aware enough to never go down that rabbit hole again, even if my ex were on board (but he’s not like that). It would be a disaster and a disappointment. I’m just trying to be honest about my mental process — writing this out is pretty therapeutic for me, even if it’s irritating to y’all, haha. I do mean it that I'm happy for my ex — he did find a great partner for himself, and I think he deserves that happiness. I don't want to mess with that, and haven’t reached out in years. But our impending move to the city where he lives has stirred up some stuff, I guess.

 

There’s clearly some lingering bitterness that I made the stupid decision to hold back my life for a man who yanked me around but didn't actually want me. And that I let myself fall into that damaging pattern. That’s the bigger problem. Maybe the ex "matters" because... I want to ascribe some sort of meaning to the relationship I had with him. That it wasn't just a huge waste of time. That salvaging a friendship would make all those years worth it. Of course, had I not gone through what I did with him, the stars may not have aligned to give me what I would have now.

 

I mean, I have a brilliant and hilarious and caring husband, an amazing toddler that I love more than anything, a dog, cat, goldfish, and a fulfilling job. I still put my career on the back-burner, though, moving to several different cities to help along my husband's higher-paying one. So there are echoes of my past behavior here — I guess I am who I am. It's fine, because I do have that built-in flexibility with my job now, and have managed to achieve some success. But in the process, I haven't had a chance to forge new friendships, and tend to focus on past ones instead. Mostly I dedicate my time to my family, which is the most important thing.

 

On that: Things are really tough in a completely different way now. For example, my son is going to need several intensive surgeries throughout his childhood, and it’s a major stressor for us. There are other things happening that are also quite difficult. Maybe that's why I'm trying to focus on something more superficial now -- instead of fretting over some very real, very painful realities that have no easy solutions.

 

Still, I need to just shut up and practice some gratitude, particularly in a time when things are uncertain for so many people in this world.

 

And just let that ex go.

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This is an eyebrow-raising turn of phrase that should cause you to examine your motives.

 

'Alerting' someone as a 'courtesy' is like saying that the playing field is now level because they've been warned.

 

That's what "alert" means: a warning: "There is a potential threat to your marriage nearby. You've been warned. If you don't heed the warning, whatever happens next is on you."

 

No need to alert someone if there is no imminent danger to avoid.

 

Common courtesy is to say a brief "hello" and move on from potential chance encounters.

 

I didn't read it the same way, as a warning... But more of an attempt to connect. Like if I travel somewhere and let a person that lives there know. It's basically saying I'm gonna be there, are you available to get together?

 

If I didn't have time to meet the person,I probably wouldn't bother letting them know. Seriously,what is there to say? Unless of course it's someone I'm super close with and I'd tell them anyway.

 

I think the ex would be confused why you told him and his conclusion would be negative. Like yeah.she wants me.lol

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He doesn't matter, not really? I'd never want to be in a relationship with him, or even some sort of sordid affair. I have wished we could remain friendly, but that's the extent of it. And I'm realizing, FINALLY, how misguided even that is.

 

Truth is, I'm still pretty angry at MYSELF for focusing a huge chunk of my 20s on him, derailing my career for years. One example: I once turned down a great job offer in a different city because of my attachment to him, and took a lousy job that was ill-suited (during a recession, no less) for me locally just because I was desperate to make it work. I won't take complete blame. He emerged from the woodwork just as I went out of town for the interview, and he told me he wanted to marry me, blah blah. So I turned it down and stayed in the original city for him — just to have him change his mind for the millionth time.

 

That was just one instance of being wanted and then rejected; I fell for it over and over until I finally did just up and move across the country. That was the best thing I've ever done for myself. But clearly I still haven’t shaken the habit I had of constantly going back. I’ve been chasing a feeling of validation and a feeling of closure from him, but intellectually know it’s got to come from within. That's the hard part.

 

I don't blame my ex for not wanting to be with me, though. As I said earlier in this thread — we were very mismatched, in terms of personalities, priorities, and lifestyles. But I was addicted to the physical and emotional chemistry of the situation (I think he had to have been, too… why else would he allow for such damaging recidivism? Or maybe thinking that is part of the problem), and if I'm being honest, it's a high I still miss.

 

I love my husband tremendously, but the routine and stability of marriage — and the stress and heavy responsibility of it all — just doesn't always compare to the exquisite pain and pleasure of making up and breaking up. It's unhealthy, I know it. But there was a simplicity back then that I am nostalgic about, I guess. That said, I swear I'm self-aware enough to never go down that rabbit hole again, even if my ex were on board (but he’s not like that). It would be a disaster and a disappointment. I’m just trying to be honest about my mental process — writing this out is pretty therapeutic for me, even if it’s irritating to y’all, haha. I do mean it that I'm happy for my ex — he did find a great partner for himself, and I think he deserves that happiness. I don't want to mess with that, and haven’t reached out in years. But our impending move to the city where he lives has stirred up some stuff, I guess.

 

There’s clearly some lingering bitterness that I made the stupid decision to hold back my life for a man who yanked me around but didn't actually want me. And that I let myself fall into that damaging pattern. That’s the bigger problem. Maybe the ex "matters" because... I want to ascribe some sort of meaning to the relationship I had with him. That it wasn't just a huge waste of time. That salvaging a friendship would make all those years worth it. Of course, had I not gone through what I did with him, the stars may not have aligned to give me what I would have now.

 

I mean, I have a brilliant and hilarious and caring husband, an amazing toddler that I love more than anything, a dog, cat, goldfish, and a fulfilling job. I still put my career on the back-burner, though, moving to several different cities to help along my husband's higher-paying one. So there are echoes of my past behavior here — I guess I am who I am. It's fine, because I do have that built-in flexibility with my job now, and have managed to achieve some success. But in the process, I haven't had a chance to forge new friendships, and tend to focus on past ones instead. Mostly I dedicate my time to my family, which is the most important thing.

 

On that: Things are really tough in a completely different way now. For example, my son is going to need several intensive surgeries throughout his childhood, and it’s a major stressor for us. There are other things happening that are also quite difficult. Maybe that's why I'm trying to focus on something more superficial now -- instead of fretting over some very real, very painful realities that have no easy solutions.

 

Still, I need to just shut up and practice some gratitude, particularly in a time when things are uncertain for so many people in this world.

 

And just let that ex go.

 

Aww. I'm.sorry. I get it. Try to forgive yourself. Give yourself closure. In our 20s we all did the kinds of things you're explaining!

 

We love hard, get jerked around, contribute to the jerking. I bet if you polled a million people, most could say, "yep. That was my 20s". I know it was mine. Settling for chaos because we're young and we have no idea.

 

As for the jobs etc... Forget the opportunities that you didn't take. Every step you did take, brought you to your life now. And as you say, it's great. Be thankful you did what you did. You must have done something right.

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Truth is, I'm still pretty angry at MYSELF for focusing a huge chunk of my 20s on him, derailing my career for years. One example: I once turned down a great job offer in a different city because of my attachment to him, and took a lousy job that was ill-suited (during a recession, no less) for me locally just because I was desperate to make it work. I won't take complete blame. He emerged from the woodwork just as I went out of town for the interview, and he told me he wanted to marry me, blah blah. So I turned it down and stayed in the original city for him — just to have him change his mind for the millionth time.

 

I would phrase all this differently, as a step toward demagnetizing wherever he symbolizes in your life. The idea, for instance, that you stayed in the original city "for him." Well, no. You stayed for yourself, as a way to pursue your needs, best you understood them at that time. You were doing the same thing back then that you are doing now, and will do forever, which is exerting your free will.

 

Guess what I'm saying is that it seems like you have a story in your mind about how "powerful" he is, in terms of your own life story, and you've found a jagged sort of comfort in that self-generated saga, one the requires a "weakness" in you to remain "true." The time with him in your 20s and the choice to eventually fling yourself across the country: it all spins around him, to the point where your marriage and husband, in part, are defined as "sensible" where that was "senseless." Were I in an English class talking about a novel, I would say that is a rudimentary reading of the plot that fails to celebrate the full spectrum of humanity by leeching the protagonist the credit she deserves.

 

So what about the idea that you were, and are, just on a path to finding yourself? Getting lost here, found there. Best I can see things from my own experience is that that's all we're really ever doing. Trick is to be able to check ourselves here and there—to look in the mirror, so we're not using others as mirrors—and ask ourselves what habits we want to keep indulging in and which we want to let go of.

 

You can put things poetically, or tragically, as in describing the "high" of the "exquisite pain and pleasure" you felt during that juncture in your life. Or you can put them more pragmatically, and accept that, right now, you are missing something in your own life—something that provides that high, so to speak, without the hangover. Not sure what that would be for you, but I'd try to carve it out so you're not stuck in some loop of trying to "practice gratitude" for what you have while not-so-secretly yearning for something more.

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On that: Things are really tough in a completely different way now. For example, my son is going to need several intensive surgeries throughout his childhood, and it’s a major stressor for us. There are other things happening that are also quite difficult. Maybe that's why I'm trying to focus on something more superficial now -- instead of fretting over some very real, very painful realities that have no easy solutions.

 

This part stood out to me. I can relate. I hope your son is ok and the surgeries go smoothly. We all do this to some level, by the way. Stick with your family and the ones who love you and care for you.

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I didn't read it the same way, as a warning... But more of an attempt to connect. Like if I travel somewhere and let a person that lives there know. It's basically saying I'm gonna be there, are you available to get together?

 

If I didn't have time to meet the person,I probably wouldn't bother letting them know. Seriously,what is there to say? Unless of course it's someone I'm super close with and I'd tell them anyway.

 

I think the word choice is interesting, worth her examining it before dismissing it.

 

I agree that this is how her ex would probably interpret it:

 

I think the ex would be confused why you told him and his conclusion would be negative. Like yeah.she wants me.lol
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But I was addicted to the physical and emotional chemistry of the situation (I think he had to have been, too… why else would he allow for such damaging recidivism? Or maybe thinking that is part of the problem), and if I'm being honest, it's a high I still miss.

 

I love my husband tremendously, but the routine and stability of marriage — and the stress and heavy responsibility of it all — just doesn't always compare to the exquisite pain and pleasure of making up and breaking up.

 

Maybe it is a desire to feel wanted?

 

I assume that part of the thrill of the on-off relationship with your ex were those moments when he "came back", so to speak, and made you feel wanted, desired and validated. If you two were breaking up and making up, there would've been a somewhat consistent display of desire for you (on his part)

 

Long-term relationships and marriages don't generally come with the same "chase", because it's inherently understood after a certain point (hopefully) that your partner wants you. There isn't the same drive to win you over/back that likely would have been experiencing more frequently with this ex. How's the romance between you and your husband lately? Could it be improved upon in some way?

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OP, you sound really lonely.... Yes, I know you have a family, a great husband, etc., but it seems like you are lacking just some easy going friendships, some moments where you let your hair down, chat about nothing much with other ladies, laugh, and walk away feeling refreshed.

 

My suggestion is don't bottle it up and force yourself to be grateful for what you already have, but rather seek out some friendships, fresh faces, make a point of going out once or twice a month just for your own sake, to refresh quite literally. Being wife and mom and dealing with the stress that you are facing will wear down anyone. You have to find some outlets - be it socializing or a hobby or something where you unplug a little on a regular basis, blow off some of that pent up steam. It will help you cope so much better.

 

I know right now it's hard with covid, but it won't be here forever. Check out some meetup groups, outdoor hobbies/sports. You might find something that sticks for you and then all this ex stuff will fade into oblivion where it belongs.

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I pray that everything goes well with your son's surgeries. Hopefully, next year when social distancing could be a thing of the past, you can look into Mommy and Me groups. It's a great way meet other mothers who have children in your child's age group to have fun activities with as well as to form new connections. I did that when in my first marriage. My husband was away in the Navy. We went to Sea World once, and had a pediatrician visit for an informative talk. You might even find someone who you could trade babysitting hours with for critical couples time with your husband. Take care.

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This has been a good lesson for me, so thank you guys. I didn’t realize how ego-driven all of this has been for me. I think I’m just smarting from being written off and crave validation; it’s a trend of mine that extends far beyond this particular ex. I’m a people pleaser. I have placed more importance on my moving near him than is actually warranted; people, after all, break up all the time and move on while staying in the same city the whole time. It’s dumb to think this would be any different. I appreciate some of you for helping me see that. Even though it’s a bit of a bitter pill to swallow: that I’m just egotistical and not that important at all (to him, anyway). But why does that even matter? It doesn’t.

 

I do have other stressors in life that are substantially more pressing than this; this whole ex thing is just a welcome distraction to avoid focusing on the other things that I have no control over. Mental masturbation? Ugh, it’s no fun to look in the mirror sometimes.

 

You were not written off.

In marriage, you forsake all others.

Wife comes from on again of again girlfriend from a few years ago.

the "how are things" messages were in no way a deep connection. Maybe curiosity or obligation,

He does NOT wonder how you are doing anymore because he is smitten with his wife.

Follow his lead

 

I moved back to my home town. A ex of mine lived 15 minutes away from my parents house and years ago last i knew he lived 3 miles from my Grandma. I have never run into him EVER. And i have not thought about him until this thread made me think of the proximity. Its been over 10 years now - i still have never run into him. I could have passed him on opposite sides of the street but i never noticed if i did.

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