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From breakup to reconciliation - from someone who knows **LONGEST POST EVER**

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(For those looking for quick reading, yes, my ex has come back to me and my main points are summarised at the bottom of this entry. However I'm posting my story in incredible detail as I feel it helps to better understand the phases one might go through, particular details may strike a chord with someone experiencing similar things, and as the source for my final main points of advice. Simply, back when I was having extreme difficulty I would've loved to have read something like this)


I've been here at eNotalone for a long time, since before the relationship detailed here began. I've had to delete all the posts in more than one account because of things documented here, so you'll have to trust me when I say I have more experience than my post count implies.


Five months ago, I was in the position I assume many of you are now in; recently dumped by the person you thought loved you, the person you were expecting to spend a good portion of your life with. I came here to eNotalone, reading the seemingly timeless wise words of SuperDave and others, just like you are now. And five months later, I wouldn't change much at all. I'm glad I didn't get back with my ex straight away. I'm glad I was forced to go through so much pain and anguish. I'm glad about how almost everything has turned out.


This thing is extremely long. Novella style. I've broke it down into chunks so those interested can read it in bits. Anyway, here's my story.



I was with my girlfriend for a year and a half, although we'd known each other for a year before then. We were one of "those" couples; everyone said we were perfect for each other, always touchy feely, amazing sex life, so much in common. We were very much in love.


Unfortunately, we had some problems. When I first entered into the relationship, I had a problem with my girlfriend's past. Over the months I got over this, but I don't think she ever really believed I didn't have a problem with anymore. Her problem was low self-esteem; allowing guys to come onto her during weak moments and, although she didn't cheat or anything, hiding the truth from me, only for me to find out later. None of this helped by the fact we were long distance and saw each other only on weekends or sometimes every other weekend.



She was in the army cadet force, which comes together once a week and then every so often they'll have a camp for a weekend, week or a bit longer. Unfortunately it was here where the things she would hide from me occurred, and also where she met the majority of her past boyfriends.


However, towards the end of July 06, she was going on a three week camp; the longest we would ever be apart. I had settled the issue of what she had hidden from me the day before she left, and I felt good about it. She kept in contact via text messages from camp, and for whatever reason, I rediscovered a lot of feelings for her. You know, those feelings you have when you first enter a relationship and everything is so exciting. For whatever reason, they came back.


At the end of the three weeks, I hopped on a train and went to visit her, as we had planned. She had the entire week off and her parents were away on holiday, so we had the house to ourselves. It was going to be great. When I got there, she was distant. She said she had something to tell me.


Long story short, the amount of people she had been with before me suddenly doubled, and included someone that had been in a long term relationship who had also been introduced to me as a friend. Essentially, for reasons I won't go into here, this meant our entire relationship was based on lies. This drove me nuts and I shouted and screamed, but ultimately after an hour or so I felt I could take it. Then she said she was confused about the relationship, and that she needed a few days to get her head clear. She gave me money for the train ticket and I left, dejected and feeling terrible.


That night was perhaps the longest of my night. Texting her, begging for answers, only to get muddled apologies in reply. The next day I went to an internet cafe (didn't have the internet at the time) to send an email, which ultimately never arrived. I couldn't stand it. I decided I was going back the next day.


I turned up on her doorstep with flowers and some food she liked. She didn't let me in, instead taking me to a bench down the road. Long story short, she told me she didn't love me. Then that she wasn't sure that she loved me. Then that she didn't think she was good enough for me.

Ultimately, she told me she had cheated on me.


I was horrified and had a panic attack right there in the street. But I was blinded by love and believed that we could work things out. She said she had to think about everything because her head was so messed up. I ended up getting the train back again. I couldn't stand to stay at my university house so I decided to go and stay with my mother for a few days.


There's never a good time to be told you've been cheated on, but I do feel that maybe things would've been a tiny bit easier to take had I not rediscovered that exciting, passionate side of emotion towards her.


(I know I've gone into stupid detail about all this, but I feel people could be experiencing remarkably similar things and so the slightest extra bit of description could help)



The very same day I went to stay at my mum's and told her everything that had happened. In the evening, my girlfriend texted me, saying she was so sorry for everything and that she wanted to work things out. I was overjoyed by this obviously. In the night, she phoned me up, and even in the state I was in, I could tell she was... different. She said that even though she had cheated, she didn't feel like she owed me anything. She didn't feel remorseful about what had happened, because it didn't feel real to her. Nevertheless, I arranged to go see her again the next day and stay with her like we planned, and to try and start working things out.


I didn't sleep that night. I read all kinds of things to try and find out what the best thing was to do in the situation. Looking back now, all I was doing was trying to find ways to rationalise what she had done, as if it wasn't wrong and not her fault.


I turned up to hers the next day, and things were okay. We had some sexual contact, which was a definite indicator of my rediscovered affection; I thought she was really into it too, although I still don't know to this day if she was. We went out shopping and got enough food for me to stay for the entire week. In the evening, we had more sexual contact, then afterwards I began feeling sad as the effects of what she had done began to show.


At this point, everything went downhill. I don't know why, but I've always suspected that it was because I expressed my sadness and she just felt like she had done nothing wrong or whatever the hell was going through her head at the time.


I should point out that I call these three days "Masochism week". I can't blame her for how she acted, as it was my choice to stay there. However, I suffered a great deal more hurt during this time. I arrived on a Tuesday, and so I'll just run down some of the things that happened over the days:


TUESDAY--I mentioned most of that above, but at night I couldn't sleep yet again. I always used to check the time by grabbing her phone and opening it so it would light up and show me. I did this, but saw there was a text (or it might've been a missed call, don't remember) from the guy she had cheated with. I went crazy and woke her up. She said she had been in contact with him as they had been discussing how she should work things out with me. I just accepted this, completely overlooking the fact that she was still in contact with the guy she cheated with, something nobody must ever accept from the person they're trying to patch things up with.


WEDNESDAY--she had some people over for a gathering, and completely ignored me for the majority of the time. At one point I was talking fairly in depth to a friend of hers, and my girlfriend just kept giving me the strangest looks. I've never seen her look at me like that and I don't know what it means. Later that night, she also told me she wasn't feeling sexually attracted to me anymore.


THURSDAY--one of her friends (who was at the camp where she cheated on me) was still about and I spoke to her briefly about whether I should keep trying with my girlfriend; she said I should. Later that day, when she was gone, I was sitting next to my girlfriend, who was texting whenever I was out of the room. At one point, she texted whilst in front of me. To the guy she had cheated on me with. Saying how she was going out on Saturday and that he could, "accompany her".


This is the single most destructive act I've ever encountered. This hurt me more than the cheating. I'm over that and have even managed to forgive her for it (through apathy more than anything), but thinking about that text still sends shivers up my spine.


Later in the day, I decided to make a deal with her. I was okay with her texting this guy, so long as she told me when that happened. She agreed and seemed happy. She didn't do it. I knew she didn't. I looked at her phone and there was tons of things from him. Even a text from him offering to come over and help her "drown her sorrows, he he he".


Obviously, she still wanted to f*** this guy, and probably other guys. I stuck around still. Just goes to show you how blind and trapped in denial you can be during these times.


I left the next day, mainly at her bidding. She wasn't trying to fix anything at all, essentially sacrificing everything because she wanted to go out to clubs with her friends (her words). She sulked like a child when I asked her to let me know when she was doing things. She said she would come and see me the next weekend, however.


I spent the next week at home without contact. Minutes felt like hours. I was drinking vodka to enable myself to sleep at night, and not eating properly at all (THESE ARE BAD THINGS AND YOU SHOULDN'T DO THEM). On the Friday she was supposed to come up, I heard nothing. I texted her, and - again, long story short - she gave me several terrible excuses as to why she couldn't come up. I essentially begged her and agreed to stay for a single night. She also talked about how an ex of hers - someone that treated her like dirt and who I had always had a problem with - had made contact with her and they were talking again.


She sat away from me and gave no physical contact at all. In short, it seemed she felt no remorse for what she had done and didn't want a relationship. I decided that we should split up officially and not see each other anymore. I was still very weak at this point and wanted to spend one last night sleeping by her side. So I did. And in the morning she left.


It also turned out at this point, that when I went to see her that first weekend and she told me stuff about her past; that was her attempt to get me so mad I'd break up with her without having to know what she'd done. Telling me she needed a few days to think about things actually meant, "I'm dumping you" but she didn't have the spine to just say it.



The next day, a Sunday, I did the stupid thing of breaking into her email. I found one from the ex she had begun talking to again. It said how they should definitely go ahead with HER suggestion of meeting up. This scared the crap out of me.


Then about an hour later, something happened. I snapped out of it. I suddenly felt very confident. I realised that the girl I had been thinking about and seeing for the past two weeks wasn't the same girl I fell in love with. She was some sort of evil shadow, a confused disgusting excuse for a person.


If she wants to go back to him, I thought, then she's stupider than I thought. It's her turn to suffer. She can miss me. I'm going to go on and live my life and she can see what it's like without me.


I can see now that it was incredibly fortunate for me to start feeling this way, just two weeks after all the badness started. I was still weak and vulnerable and needy and all that stuff; however this new positive outlook - the belief that perhaps I could go on without her - helped me beyond belief.


I started to decide to say yes to doing things I wouldn't normally do. Going with with a friend and his friends that I didn't know. Going to a big market on an airfield with a friend's parent. My own personal way to deal with things is to read read read as much as I can about similar situations (eNotalone included!) so I did that a lot. It helped that my university semester started not so long after this all happened, so that gave me something else to focus on. We also had a new housemate move in, without whom I really can't imagine getting through all of this. We started up a band as a joke - to write and record an entire album in week! I was still thinking about my ex all the time, but the positive outlook and having things to do kept me going. Every now and then I'd have a little trip and end up crying about stuff, but that's to be expected.


I did have to contact her at one point though. When we were still together, we had arranged to go see a TV show taping together which was being produced by my comedy hero. I wasn't going to miss out on this, so I emailed her simply asking if she could mail me my ticket; no emotion or "how are you?" or anything. Her reply was filled with "I miss yoU" and "you have no idea how I'm feeling" and all that stuff, aswell as the fact that the tickets had her name on them so I wouldn't be able to get in alone. So I had to accept that I was going to see her, if only for a few hours.


I did more reading and decided the best way to approach it was to let her know nothing about me and just be as happy and positive as I could be. It lasted for a while, but ultimately at the end of the evening she expressed that she was more confused than ever. She wanted to try again, but she was finally feeling remorse over what she'd done and didn't think she was good enough for me. Our talk was cut off by her having to get the last train home. We mouthed, "I love you" to each other from a distance. She said she'd email me, and I was expecting it.


Nothing ever came. No more contact occurred. I used the next three weeks to figured out what I wanted. I tried talking to other girls and seeing if I could move on, and although I was finally finding other girls genuinely attractive, I knew I wasn't ready to do so. After much thought, reading and analysing, I knew that I was finally in a good place with my life. I was more confident and direct with people. I was almost completely healed. I had everything I wanted - except for her. So it made sense for me to try again.



Late in September, I emailed her explaining my feelings. That I was totally happy with my life, but I still wanted her to be a part of it and that I was giving her until the end of the month to decide if she wanted to try again. Her reply said she wanted to be with me; but not now. She was feeling okay being by herself and that she knew I was perfect for her, but she didn't feel perfect for me. I emailed back letting her know that if it didn't happen now, it would never happen, pointed out some irrationalities in her argument. Almost certainly the wrong thing to do, but we started talking again.


It wasn't a particularly good idea. When she contacted me, it was great. When she didn't, it was heart-wrenching and prevented me from doing other things. This continued throughout October, as I tried to reintroduce myself to her life but was terrified by new friends, new thoughts. At one point she came down to see me again, and apologised for everything and we shared some hugs.


I can see now that it NEVER would've worked. But I carried on and endured the hell of it anyway. Over time, the feelings did fade somewhat, ultimately to the point where I wasn't sure if I loved her anymore.


Early in November, for a break, I decided to go see a (female) friend I hadn't seen for a year for a weekend. And guess what? I had genuine feelings for this girl. I guess it's because she is someone I already liked, respected, and I knew she wasn't the promiscuous or deceitful type at all (suspected traits that tortured me about my ex). I had plenty of chances to make a move, but I didn't; I was still confused about my ex and it wasn't fair to put the friend through all that.


I returned home excited; I had feelings for someone else. Sure I was confused, but the breakthrough was enough to make me feel better. A couple of weeks after that, my ex was wanting to go on another army camp for two weeks, but her work wasn't letting her go.


The week before she was due to leave, she was incredibly up and down with me. On Monday, I texted her and she was wonderful in reply and contacted me throughout the day; on Tuesday, she said one word to me online and nothing else; on Wednesday she phoned me for the first time in forever; on Thursday, she said she'd talk to me and her last words were "speak to you soon xxx". She never did.


I assumed she went to her army camp the next day. I busied myself over the course of the next week by doing fairly random things, including getting my head shaved and working on my screenplay (I'm a film student and have been writing a script - an excellent cathartic way of dealing with stuff). After I assumed she had been there for a week, I texted her asking how she was. She replied saying she couldn't bear talking to me anymore and that she was sorry.



I was upset. For about twenty minutes. Because I had completely prepared myself for this. It was like flicking a switch. I had a new look, with my shaven head. It just so happened the day she texted was the day Guitar Hero 2 came out so I played that to death, and in the evening I went to a comedy show. I was even making eyes and smiles with a pretty usher, within an hour of hearing my ex couldn't stand to talk to me anymore.


This wasn't the false NC that I had done before, this was it. I was living my life without her and completely prepared for it. I focussed all my romantic attention on my friend whom I'd developed feelings for (even though she lives an hour away). I started reading books about how to develop my social skills and have more people like me and want to be around me. I worked hard on an animation piece for university.


I rarely ever thought of her. Occasionally I'd see her hometown football team on TV and think of her then. On one particularly nasty occasion, I was in a supermarket that we used to frequent and a song special to us happened to play. For one day, I felt sad about things - but it wasn't, "I want to work things out with her", it was, "I wonder what could have happened if we had worked things out".



My birthday is on Christmas Eve, and on the night of the 23rd me and my friend decided to randomly walk around the city we live in. We discussed my feelings towards my friend, and what I was going to do about it, when I was going to see her, make my move etc. We got home around half past midnight on the 24th. As I made my way upstairs, I suddenly remembered my ex and her habit of texting exes on their birthdays, something that used to frustrate me greatly.


I was right. At five minutes past midnight, she'd emailed me. She wished me a happy birthday/Christmas and asked if I wanted to talk to her again. My first reaction was to tell her where to go, but I decided to be nice about it. I wished her a good Christmas too, and calmly told her I would never be her friend. Her reply said she hadn't been able to stop thinking about me and that she knew she wanted to be with me.


All of you going through hell out there at the moment probably dream of this moment. I know I did. But the truth is that it rarely comes when you want it; and when you want it, you're usually not ready for it.

I searched deep inside and I knew there were some feelings for her somewhere still. So I emailed back, telling her I didn't love her anymore and that I was pursuing someone else. But I also said that there was a tiny chance of working things out with her, but it depended on so many conditions. I got a reply saying it was horrible to hear that but she had to talk to me and would do so in the New Year.


Come January 2nd, I'm bored and email her saying to talk now or leave me alone. She talks. I'm excited to hear from her again - not the heartless soulless piece of work that cheated and ruined things five months ago, but the girl I used to love who I hadn't seen for at least six months. We decide she should come see me - and she left to do so an hour later.

I met her at the train station and we hugged tightly. I had forgotten what she sounded like. I had forgotten what she looked like. I had forgotten everything.


Long story short, we reconnected over the course of the day she stayed for. My feelings grew back for her. She was back - the girl I fell in love with was back. No longer the horrible dispicable person last present in my memory. She told me what had happened.


Around the same time she sent me the text saying she couldn't speak to me anymore, she decided to start seeing someone else in an effort to get over me (I know, that never ever works). I don't know much about this guy but it seems crazy, as after being together for only a short while they went on holiday together. However, the whole time my ex was thinking of me, wanting to be with me, tracking me online. When she got back from her holiday, she split up with the new guy and emailed me.

I decided that I think I want to try again with her.



Essentially, I face a choice: to continue to try with my ex, or to pursue my friend, whom I admit I still have feelings for, although they seem to pale in comparison to the rediscovered feelings for my ex so I presume she might've been a rebound.


The problems that lie ahead are the rebuilding of trust, and the fact that she still goes to army cadets which obviously caused me nothing but pain. At first, I laid down conditions saying she HAD to do certain things in order for me to try, but I've quickly realised that's not right. If she wants to do something, it is her choice, and if she chooses to do things to help me, then great. But I cannot tell her, "do this or I will leave". I must let her make her own decisions and if I cannot cope with them, I will leave.


I also feel a bit unfair that she has had a relationship whilst we've been apart, and I've had nothing. She's much more experienced than me and I'm pretty insecure about my own sexual experience and sometimes get the nagging feeling that everything will mess up because I'll want to "try" other people. I'm hugely moral too, and so relationships are really the only way to go for me. But this feeling is fleeting and my own problem that nobody else can be held accountable for.


She is also very volatile, and will often not contact me as much as I'd like. I'm not entirely sure what problems face her, but I'm sure I'll find out. For all I know, this could all end tonight.


Whatever happens, I must always be prepared for it not working out.

If you've managed to read all of this, well done. I'd give you some kind of reward but I'm just a poor student.




Unless your ex has clearly said to you, "I want to work things out" or, "I want to talk things through", GET AWAY. No contact, and that's strict. This can be difficult obviously if you work or live together, or if you have the same circle of friends, but it's crucial.


At first, going a day at a time it will be incredibly difficult. You'll feel amazingly proud when you go a week without contact. It's difficult as hell, but fairly quickly the days will turn into weeks. It's all about getting used to things.



This goes hand in hand with going NC. You will make so much more progress if you do things and keep yourself busy. If you would normally so no to something, try saying yes. If someone invites you out and you want to say, "no, my ex could get in touch and I might miss it" you must ignore that and go out anyway! If they do happen to contact and miss you, they'll contact again if they want you back.


It's all about keeping your mind occupied. You'll also grow as a person by keeping yourself busy.



This is the main point here. NOTHING YOU DO WILL MAKE YOUR EX WANT TO COME BACK. If your ex isn't interested, then they will never come back. There's nothing you can do. There's no magic words, gifts or attention you can give them.


The very best you can do is to move on with your life. If your ex realises they want you back, THEY WILL CONTACT YOU. If they don't, then they don't. But at any cost, you will be moving on. It's as simple as this; the best way to get your ex back is also the best way to move on.


I doubt anyone will actually read all of this, but I figured if it helps just one person, it's worth writing it all.

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wow what a story - it has certainly helped me reading it. im at the stage at the moment where im trying desperately to go NC but finding it incredibly hard to do. it certainly helps to know so many people on here have experienced the same feelings i am now, but find the strength to get through. i wish u luck for the future.

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Hi, yourfaceinmanila!


Great post! Could I ask you for some advice? I've been in NC with my ex for about two months (not total NC), and I want to get her back, but because of many quarrels and accusations, she's afraid to contact me: I've basically screwed things up pretty good! What's your stand on apologizing for these things? Should I patch things up, get her comfortable again and then go into NC?


Would REALLY appreciate some advice!



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if you're not in total NC at the moment, then really you can do whatever you want. If you want to apologise because you are genuinely sorry, then do so and go into NC. But don't expect it to provoke a reaction, or do it in the first place in order to get a reply. Expect nothing.


So my advice would be to only apologise if you genuinely want to, not because you want a reaction from it.

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if you're not in total NC at the moment, then really you can do whatever you want. If you want to apologise because you are genuinely sorry, then do so and go into NC. But don't expect it to provoke a reaction, or do it in the first place in order to get a reply. Expect nothing.


So my advice would be to only apologise if you genuinely want to, not because you want a reaction from it.

Hi, yourfaceinmanila!


I want both. Who doesn't (if they want him/ her back)? But I really value your advice, and I REALLY admire your perseverance - going through all that infidelity is hardcore.



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I'm sorry to say my man that although you think things might be on the upswing, this relationship is seriously fractured and you are setting yourself to get emotionally slapped over and over again by handling it this way.


Precedent has been set. This chick can cheat on you, lie to you, dump you, and come back to you. She notices this and the history is doomed to repeat itself.


When a relationship has gotten to this point, in all of the thousands of posts I've read including my personal experience and of those around me, this kind of situation will end up the same way every time. She's gonna continue the hot/cold behavior slowly drifting away further till she drops you again. In the meantime she's gonna be doing her thing with other guys. She's gonna string you along until she finally gets bored or finds some other guy who she can be serious about at which point you will be left with a ton of false hope that you've built up, wasted time, and a worse broken heart in the end.


I know the high you're feeling right now feels good, but the reality is that there is still a very big problem that can't be solved the way you're doing it. It can't be solved at all. This relationship for all intents and purposes is dead in the water. It's only a matter of time before it finally sinks for good.

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yourfaceinmanila, thanks for taking the time to write that. My situation isn't exactly like your's, but there are definitely some common threads, and I could closely relate to a lot of what you said. Like you, I have done lots of reading online about people in similar situations, and I've found it quite theraputic to know that there are others in the same boat as me.


Best of luck to you and thanks again for the post.

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  • 1 month later...

"I realised that the girl I had been thinking about and seeing for the past two weeks wasn't the same girl I fell in love with."


I can relate to that, big time. My ex was the sweetest kindest most loving person you'll ever meet, and even her friends and family now can't understand what has gotten into her to make her so selfish and egotistical. People change, and change is not always for the better...


its nice to think that people can return to their old selves again, but i always wonder how real it is or how permenant it will be.


forgiveness is a quality i want to exude, but at what point does it become ignorant or naive?

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"I realised that the girl I had been thinking about and seeing for the past two weeks wasn't the same girl I fell in love with."


I can relate to that, big time. My ex was the sweetest kindest most loving person you'll ever meet, and even her friends and family now can't understand what has gotten into her to make her so selfish and egotistical. People change, and change is not always for the better...


its nice to think that people can return to their old selves again, but i always wonder how real it is or how permenant it will be.


forgiveness is a quality i want to exude, but at what point does it become ignorant or naive?


baker, i have been thinking about this too recently. If my ex were to come back; would that change in her be permanent or temporary? Also, that point you bring up about being ignorant or naive is something that I'm trying to work on should the situation present itself in the future.

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wow , you've been through the ringer. Give you lots of credit for trying so hard. I can acknowledge your feelings from another perspective of how I made my ex feel. I never played games or was unsure or cheated etc, But I put him through hell cause I didn't treat him how he deserved to be. Im know he is my soulmate and somehow, someday, someway we will find a way back, but for now I need to correct alot of ME. I can't ever say sorry if I don't try to make it better. Even if I never see him again, at least I know I honestly in my heart truly loved him and genuinley wanted to do the right things. Once trust is gone it needs to be rebuilt and earned, it just doesn't happen cause we'd like it too. I have learned alot the hard way. I pray to God to help me be strong and do the things I need to do. And I'm glad for everyone on this site cause there's so much understanding for eachother, thx all

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Great Post!


I'm in a similar situation. My ex was sweet, then started cheating and went into self-destruct mode. She doesn't love herself because she doesn't forgive herself. One day she will figure things out, but I'm not waiting around. I've already met a great girl who can offer me things my ex never could, or never did.


If my ex tried to come back, I don't know if I could do it. Your ex was worse than mine, so you must really love her. Congrats on the opportunity to work things out. That's all I ever wanted, but never got the chance.

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