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Pictures, love letters, gifts... What to do with them?

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Do I box up everything that has to do with my ex and throw it away? Or do I simply store them for future memories? I have tons of pictures with her, clothes from her, and a drawer full of love letters. I am afraid to open that drawer up and read anything because I know I will get depressed. I am on the 3rd day of NC and I thank eNotAlone for helping me stay strong. Each morning I wake up and read stories that are similar to mine. Knowing others out there hurt the way I do gives me comfort. We are in this together. I just want to do this right.






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That's a tough one, I took all the things that I had from the relationship, pics etc and boxed em up. Clothing and other items I still wear but they don't really bother me that much. It is really a personal decision, I found that after time it gets easier and those things will bring up memories, but those memories will fade faster. I still have that box buried in my closet, I don't know what to do with it for now so it will sit. Not something I am real worried about at the moment, I figure at some time in the future i will go through the box, throw some things out and keep others to remember the good times we did have.


Good luck, as with all answers here, each situation / person is different, try some ideas to see what fits you.

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Box them up and put them somewhere out of sight.


Don't do anything with anything until you are SURE that's what you want to do.


The minute my ex dumped me I packed up EVERYTHING that reminded me of him and put it in a box in a cupboard. Several weeks later I threw out what I no longer wanted and kept a couple of things I thought I'd regret throwing out at a later date.


Don't do anything in a hurry.

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I've done both. From my first serious relationship that lasted 4 years, i boxed everything up. I think its all in a box at my parents house in an attick. I actually still have some things from her...like a watch, that i wear often. Doesnt bother me one bit anymore. The other stuff is letters and pictures..no need for me to see that.


With other past gf's its been a smaller collection because it was less time. Twice now i have chosen to just take the pictures and what not and burn them. It helped me. Kind of like going to a funeral..i needed that grieving. The way i looked at it is that it meant no turning back. i mean, can i really go back and be with someone who i just burnt away all of our meaningfull things. it would just be weird, it would be hard...and it basically allowed me to finally move on. I took a while to do that though..i wanted to make sure i wouldnt regret it. Once its gone, its gone.


Oh ya..that first ex...i gave all her clothes to the salvation army cause she refused to come get it back from me for months. haha

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Welcome to ENA!


Day 3 of NC is good but remember you are doing NC to heal and give yourself some time to breathe. Box up everything, seal it with 5 rolls of duct tape and when you hit the 6 month mark or start dating which ever comes first, get rid of it all. Toss it in a bonfire or in a dumpster behind a sushi bar and pat yourself on the back. The last thing you want to do is play "This Was Your Life" and sort through it like a CSI agent looking for clues to the crime. Hanging on to it is a bad idea, what happens when your next GF finds it? The shrine in the box isn't going to sit well, trust me. Stay strong and remember, this is about healing. Best Wishes.

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what i did, and i think is most simple: i stored eveyrthing in a box, in my closet, somewhere i couldnt see very easily, and sometimes id look at them...but not often! and time pases, and there came a day when i saw them and decided i was over him and didnt need the things, so i just threw em out.


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This is excellent info. I like the 6mo rule. We also bougth a puppy on our 1st yr anniversary. Bad idea right? I live in a large house with a big yard so the dog stays with me. The dog does remind me of her at times but I love him so much he stays forever!


I also had the idea of fung shui with my bedroom. I want new carpet, new paint and new furniture.


Sheesh... is it tough to let go of 6 years

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That's a pretty individual thing...some people burn it for a ritual (popular option after you find out ex was cheating!), others just keep some mementos (like pictures) and throw out other crap (like the tissue he sneezed in on the first date....ewww).


Personally, I take some things (like letters and/or pictures), box them up and never ever look at them again. I have them, in case I wanted to, but I never do. It's just...somewhere in my closet. Only exception is picture of my deceased past boyfriend that I have in my apartment, but a bit of a different circumstance there...


Stuff like clothes or presents they gave me, I don't usually worry about it, I keep them since they are now mine, and not "shared" memories. I don't even associate them after time has passed.

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I think it would be a good idea to put them all in a big box and store them in your attic, or someplace where you won't even see the box and will forget about it.

It's been a while since I've dated anyone other than my current BF, but to look back years and years ago at old love letters and things like that... it's not only a good laugh (maybe just in my case?), but depending on when you look, you will see a lot of things that you couldn't before. It completely depends on your situation what those things are, though.

If you can't decide whether or not you should throw them out, then I would say... maybe it's not time to yet. Because the time will come when you will feel comfortable enough to.

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I've been wondring the same thing. When our house is sold, there are boxes of photos and other stuff that I don't think either of us wants to go through, but it represents such a huge chunk of our lives. Maybe we'll make a time capsule to open after the pain fades.

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Mail it all back to her. You will feel better because it will be 1 step closer to getting over her. Stay in NC. Stay busy. Start talking to other girls. If she changes her mind and decides she wants you back, she's going to have to prove that she deserves another chance because she's the one who broke it off.

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When me and my exes broke up I actually boxed up everything and put them in my closet. Sometimes I found myself going through them regularly, I'd laugh and cry and reminisce but not in a non-healthy way. I never could bring myself to throw any of it away. Now I am engaged to the most amazing guy. Him and I threw them away when we moved out together, it was so easy and I had not reservations about doing it.

I think that getting rid of that stuff can give you closure..however, don't do it until your completely ready to "LET GO". Once you are, it's actually a nice relief...you can still hold onto all the good times, but rather than items, you're holding the memories in your heart.

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It depends on how the break up went and how you are feeling about it.

With my first ex I boxed everything up and wanted to send it back to him, but then decided to sit on it and sat on it for over 4 years. In the end I threw away some of the stuff because I was moving around a lot, but I still have some of the stuff he gave me, and I appreciate it, because we really had something special. Especially now, because we are in touch again and are really good friends.


My second ex turned out to be a liar, a cheat, and quite a pathetic individual. So it didn't take me too much time to throw out the stuff he gave me..with a few exceptions - things that I have practical use for and believe that I deserved for putting up with his selfish self for so long. I don't envision having anything to do with him ever again.


That's my two cents on it.


Oh, and if the break up wasn't nice, you should trying ripping up the cards, letters, or breaking knick knacks etc. I believe it is quite therapeutic =) It gets the anger out and definitely beats getting into a yelling match with your ex, which can eventually prove to be a huge waste of your time and effort.


And definitely stay on ENA - it helps to know that you are not alone =)

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Generally I trash things ... but not immediately. In the short-term, I place things in a controlled location like a box or a bag or something like that, so that they are all in one place, tucked away in a closet somewhere, and don't come popping up in everyday life to stir memories, which is very annoying. Then, after a while, after i feel better about things, I'll trash them, either just by throwing them away or by burning them, the latter of which can be very therpaeutic.

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I tossed everything. Every picture, love letter, present, hair tie ...it all got heaved in the trash. That was a couple months ago.


I don't regret it one bit, and I'd do it again. I guess it's different for different people. I initiated "she-tox" because I figured there was no point to hanging onto anything that reminded me of her. Anything that I *did* associate with her(movies, scents, books, ect) I immediately reclaimed. Rather than avoiding them, I indulged in them so I could enjoy them all without thinking about her.


If I could tear my memories of her up, and throw them away ...I just might.

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