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Dear Debra
Dear Debra, Advice Columnist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1813
Experience:  I have been an Advice columnist for 14 years. My column is published weekly in local newpapers.
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Partner back with ex - what do I do?

Resolved Question:

My partner (we got together Dec '12) was recently contacted by his ex (they split Oct '12) asking if they could give things another go. He said since she has contacted him he realises he still has extremely strong feelings for her still. He said his head is telling him one thing i.e. to stay with me but his heart is telling him another and he says he has to follow his heart and get back with her to see if things will work between them. They have split up numerous times because he said she has 'issues'.  It was her decision that they split in October.  We have both had such an indepth heart-to-heart about this on skype/over the phone (we have a long distance relationship) and we have both cried (hard) together over this. We speak every day, although today is the first day he hasn't contacted me, so I presume today is they day 'they' have decided to meet up.  My partner says he has to see if he is making the right/wrong decision. How do I keep 'sane' (and dignified) whilst he figures out who/what he wants?  Do I wait around in the hope he will come back?  I'm finding it hard not to contact him just to see if he's OK. 

Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Dear Debra replied 1 year ago.

Deardebra : I would contact him to check in and just ask how he is doing.
Deardebra : There is a reason why they split and going back together will be very challenging. He said she has issues and things could go right back to how they use to be.
Deardebra : He needs to really think this through because he could live the rest of his life in regret for leaving you.
Customer:

Hi. Thanks for your message. I've said the same think to him about how he could be making the wrong decision but he said he still needs to get back with her to see. He said he's told her all about me and I'm wondering whether this is going to make her 'issues' worse

Deardebra : People often forget why they split and it is common for people to get back together only to find the problems are still there.
Deardebra : Often people finally realize why it didn't work and he also has you who he is building a life with he will miss you and could regret leaving .
Customer:

Yes, this is what I keep thinking that the issues may still be there. He has said that if he realises he has made the wrong decision, he will contact me and let me know as he says we do have such a fantastic connection and he has deep feelings for me. However, how do I keep 'sane' in the meantime? I know it would be so easy for me to send him a text/email asking if he's OK but I think maybe I should give him some space so he can sort his head out, and perhaps he will realise that he does miss me??

Deardebra : He is only going to see if they can work things out. Things take time in relationships. It is going to be tough for them to start over.
Deardebra : You want to contact him to see how he is doing. You still love and care about each other.
Deardebra : You can explain too him how you feel.
Customer:

He said he wants a relationship with her again to see if it will work. So do I sit and wait for him or do I just move on?

Customer:

He knows how I feel - we've done nothing but talk about how we feel for each other the past 3 days. If I contact him, I don't want him to think I'm hounding him.

Deardebra : You want him to know how much you love and care for him. You don't want him to think that you are not upset. Explain too him that you though you and him had a future.
Deardebra : Together.
Customer:

He know all this, as I say, we've talked for the last 3 days.

Deardebra : Yout need to tell him there is a reason why you split and ask him if he feels deep down things will change.
Deardebra : Tell him what you have is special and worth keeping. He could go back and then want you back. But then you might be hurt that he left.
Customer:

Yes, the reason we split is because he has returned to his ex to see if things will work. Until he has done this, he won't be able to say if things will change

Deardebra : HHe needs to be sure how you feel do not hold back your feelings. He knows in his mind he should not go back. But you need to convince his heart that it is with you.
Customer:

He knows that what we have is special but he is adamant he has to follow his heart and make a go of things with the ex

Customer:

I hope he does want me back. Yes, I'm hurting like hell at the moment but I know if he doesn't do this, like he said himself, he won't be able to give 100% to our relationship

Customer:

He knows exactly how I feel, neither of us have held back on our feelings. Yes, I think you're right, he know he shouldn't go back but I think it could be more of he needs 'closure'. Even his friends have told him not to go back to her.

Customer:

 





He knows exactly how I feel, neither of us have held back on our feelings. Yes, I think you're right, he know he shouldn't go back but I think it could be more of he needs 'closure'. Even his friends have told him not to go back to her.



Deardebra : You said closure this often is what happens. There are times where people look at a past relationship and forget the tough times they had. The problems they had. Then they go back and realize nothing has change but their feelings for each other. He has strong feelings for you a new life with you that will not just go away. I do not feel you should give him space I want him to know your there.
Customer:

I'm just concerned if I don't give him the space to see how him/her get on, he's going to resent me. He knows where I am and he knows that I'm not going anywhere.

Deardebra : I do not feel he will resent you. I do not feel you should give him space because this makes the decision easier.
Customer:

Hmmmm, can't quite fathom that one out, especially as he wants to give the relationship with the ex a go. I still think if I don't give him space he'll resent me for not giving him the chance to try and work at their relationship.

Deardebra :

You also do not want him to think that you are going to move on.

Deardebra :

It is important that he knows you are there and do not want him to leave.

Deardebra :

Right now he is very torn and I feel if he goes back he is going to be thinking of you and asking himself why he left in the first place. Then I feel he might be worried when he does realize all this that you won't take him back.

Customer:

Believe me knows I won't move on and he knows I'm here for him every step of the way.

Customer:

Yes, I agree that he probably is very torn and I hope to god it is me he thinks of when he's spending time with the ex. As harsh as that probably sounds, I want him to realise that what we have is worth saving

Deardebra :

I really think he will try to work things out with her, but then realize he misses you, because it sounds like you both have a strong connection. If he truly knows how you feel and he knows how he feels about you, I think he will miss you so much that he will be contacting you apologizing for every leaving.

Customer:

I sincerely XXXXX XXXXX right. I'd like nothing more than for him to do that.

Deardebra :

I feel that because you are so kind and understanding about how he feels that he will realize you are the one for him. The one thing that I see that is very strong in your relationship is communication. This is very important, you are not hiding your feelings for each other. You both know how each other feels. He knows you are there for him.

Deardebra :

This is very important in a relationship because you never want someone to guess how you are feeling.

Deardebra :

You want them to always know you are their and that you love them.

Customer:

I've been thinking about the quote 'If you love someone, set them free, if they come back to you, they're yours. If they don't, they never were!

Customer:

Yes, I'd like to think (and I'm sure he does) that I'll be here for him

Deardebra :

People move on in relationships because they did not work to begin with. People have an idea that if they give things that second chance things will change, but often times the feelings are no longer there that you once had. The reason for this is you can think you can move forward together to make things work. But there is so much hurt, anger from splitting in the first place. It takes a lot to get by the things that went wrong in a relationship and they do resurface as you are together. That quote is something I have heard many times. But I believe that when you give someone space it gives them time to know how to live without you.

Deardebra :

If someone is always there in your life you get attached too them very quickly.

Deardebra :

You get use to hearing from them everyday.

Deardebra :

Once that disappears people move on.

Customer:

OK, will remember that last bit. I have got an email that I've written but I'm going to send it later this evening or tomorrow evening. I'm not sure whether when I was over seeing him last week that she saw us or was told by someone else. It just seems strange that all of a sudden she's got in contact. Maybe it's a case of she doesn't want him but she doesn't want him to be with anyone else. Just a thought, I could be completely wrong.

Deardebra :

That could be totally true that she doesn't want him with anyone else. She might not want him to move on. She might think that he will always be there for her and she can get him back at anytime. I like the e-mail idea. You should send him an e-mail telling him about how you feel about him, ask him how he is doing. That will keep him thinking about him.

Deardebra :

and you.

Customer:

OK, will do, I just don't want him to feel bombarded. We mail/text/talk every day and today is the first day that this hasn't happened so far.....as I say, I'm certain it's because they are together. I've told him that I understand he's probably excited at the prospect of them getting back together, especially when he seems to 'love' her so much. I've told him that he needs to realise she can't use her 'issues' as excuses all that time and that he has to be careful he's not treated like a puppet on a string. From what I can gather from what he's said, they have split on numerous occasions because of her 'issues' so maybe these 'issues' are going to resurface yet again. If they do, he said he will know for good that it's time to leave and that it's never going to work between them.

Deardebra :

If she has issues they will not just go away. They will resurface and this is something that he left behind and will not want to go through again.

Deardebra :

I know it sounds like you are bombarding him, but all you are really doing is showing you care and

Deardebra :

that you do not want to lose him.

Customer:

Well, as horrid as it probably sounds, I can live in hope that her issues surface and he realises there really is no hope for them. I then just to hope he comes back.

Customer:

Thank you for all your help. Sorry I've been wittering on.

Deardebra :

I'm here to listen and answer all your questions. Some times people can say don't go back like his friends. But he needs to see that this relationship is over for himself. He already has moved on with you. That is what he will realize that the life he had is something he can not go back to. He will know that his life is with you.

Customer:

I sincerely XXXXX XXXXX are right and I live in hope. Thank you again.

Deardebra :

you welcome, make sure you keep in contact with him.

Customer:

I will do. Thank you.

Deardebra :

you welcome

Deardebra :

Please accept my answer. thank you.

Dear Debra, Advice Columnist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1813
Experience: I have been an Advice columnist for 14 years. My column is published weekly in local newpapers.
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