Thanks Dr. Paige...
I was thinking of lunch too, but she works during the day. Maybe on the weekend? And I should I handle our 12 day trip together...in 2 weeks! WHy wouldn't she just cancel and lose the money, or ask if I could find someone else to go? If it was me and I broke up or was thinking of breaking up with someone, I certainly wouldnt want to spend 12 days together.
Thanks Dr. Paige...if I dont here from her first, I'll see if she wants to get a quick dinner later in the week. Does that sound good? But, I was talking it over with my sister....why would she still want to go on this trip? If I just broke up or am going to break up with someone, the last thing I would want is to go on a 12 day trip with that other person. When I asked her last night, she responded 'sure, why wouldnt we go'. Im just having a tough wrapping my mind around that one.
Thanks Dr. Paige and I'll certainly do my best to be patient. I talked things through with my sister, who is a bit of a hot head and she said if it were she wouldnt let her go on the trip; that I should cancel it or just go by myself, because a) she hasnt not wanted to talk about anything, but said a few weeks back that we do need to, she just wasn't ready and b) she is putting me in an incredibly difficult position of being in limbo. Obviously this leaves no room for reconciliation.
Like you said earlier, I feel like I'm in limbo and Im over thinking every little thing.
Ok thanks Dr. Paige. But doesn't she realize that I feel like I'm in limbo and what an unfair and uncomfortable position she's putting me in?
Thanks Dr. Paige,
I have always suspected that she thought I would leave her, and that I didn't take our relationship serious enough. Though that is the farthest thing from the case, I understand that my thoughts and feelings have not always been expressed in my words and actions, in this regard. I know she was hurt in the past by guys (one that literally just left; another that cheated), and I think that recently she felt I was losing interest in her and/or our relationship. Again, thats not the case but I completely acknowledge that as 1/2 of a relationship, that is part of my responsibility. Over the last month we did not get to see a lot of each other (my end of the school year teaching, and she was working odd hours and on the weekends too), which I'm sure contributed. In fact, I was going to see if she wanted to move in together, but I was waiting until we were on the boat on vacation to ask). I guess what I'm asking is: during this time, how do I acknowledge my mistakes and represent my true feelings in actions that I do take her and our relationship seriously. I know this can be done with words, but she clearly isn't ready and/or doesn't want to talk about it.
Ok great, that certainly clears some things up, and I'm up for the test (which is what she's doing, and I can certainly see that) and I think I know to pass it. But what are the things I avoid....in essence, how do I NOT fail the test?
Great, thanks Dr. Paige! Two last things...1) If I ask to grab a quick dinner this week and she agrees, should I ask if she wants to do something fun on the weekend? Or should I just leave it that and see if she responds to me first, or ask her the following day or something? 2) How do I walk the fine line of being romantic, paying attention to her interests and the details, without it coming off screaming 'take me back!'?
Thanks for all the help Dr. Paige, I will certainly keep you up to date.
Excellent advice Dr. Paige...sorry one last thing, promise! If she is in fact testing me, is she aware of it? Did she decide 'I'm going to test him' or is it more of a subconcious test to see if me/our relationship is worth it for her?
Very interesting...so she is aware that she is testing me, and she is seeing how I respond?
Right, got it....so whether its a test or a new start, part of her must want to pass that test or fulfill that new start, correct? Otherwise, why give someone a test you knew they would fail, or offer someone a new start if you knew they couldn't fulfill it?
Ok, that makes total sense and I'm beginning to see things a lot more clearly. She comes from a particular culture where men dont stay around - they cheat, leave or are never there. I think she is testing me / giving me this opportunity to see if given an out, will I take it or not.
Last one for real this time Dr. Paige! Could this be why she hasn't reached out really to contact me that much (outside of the occassional how are you doing text)? Perhaps shes waiting for me to take the initiative? She is typically not very outgoing and in my mind, would not take the first steps.
Thanks for everything....its much appreciated Dr. Paige. I'll keep you updated!
Well she got in touch via text, just to see how I was doing....which I suppose is a good sign. You think tomorrow would be a good day to see if she wants to get dinner sometime this week? Thanks Dr. Paige, your my support through this!
Well she agreed to get dinner Thursday! She didn't seem overly excited, she responded (sure, Thursday is good). But I suppose she has to keep things close to the vest, especially if shes testing me and/or giving me a second chance.
Ok a corny question here....when I pick her up, I was thinking of opening the door for her. I did that the first time we ever went out...and I'm pretty sure she's pointed that out along the way. As you said, women remember things men dont. What do you think?
Ok, another extremely corny question....shes has always wanted me to wear a pink dress shit, she said they look nice. And I of course, have always said never in my life would I be caught dead in a pink shirt. Anyway, I was thinking of getting one and wearing on the day of our flight. I'm trying to think of ways to show that I acknowledge her, and that I might not have in the past, I'm willing to going forward. Is that too much?
I'm sweating the small things....little things like I know she hates the takeoff and usually holds my hand.....but under the circumstances, should I extend my hand for her to take? I usually take the lead on these things, and I know I need to walk a fine line during the trip, its just a hard balancing act, but I'll do my best to read her signals.
Oh and I picked her up one of those cold weather long sleeve workout shirts, which is suggested for being at sea. Do you think thats overboard? Thanks Dr. Paige, thats the last of the minor details I'll bother you with :)
Hi Dr. Paige, thanks for all the help and advice. I was rereading the advice you gave me and the assessment of the situation, and it seems spot on. But one thing in particular that you wrote stood out: 'A lot of times in relationships, men have no idea that they triggered something for the woman to react to and she won't tell him because she expects him to be aware of it, figure it out and fix it without her saying anything about it'. Do you think this is the situation in my case? In case, are little things like a pink shirt, opening the car door enough to show that I acknowledge that although I do take her and our relationship seriously, I'm sure I have not expressed that in my actions, especially recently. If so, and if she wants me to 'fix the problem', are these little details enough? Since she doesn't want to talk about it and my words mean nothing without my actions anyway, what actions can I take to represent this? Or, do I hope she notices my acknowledge (even if it is not directly expressed, but subtley) and hope she responds positively?
Got it, thanks. But if thats the case, why wouldn't she just have a conversation with me about it? Given, she is not the most talkative and doesn't express her feelings too often, but in a situation like this, I'd think most people would express this to the other person and have at least one discussion before taking such drastic measures. Or, given her nature, could this be her way of indirectly saying that things need to change, and I'm going to see how you respond? (whether you say to hell with and walk away, argue or plead).
Ok...I wont say this to her directly, but I will give her the best of me from this point out and hopefully she will notice and accept the change.
Thanks Dr. Paige, your advice has helped me think a lot more clearly about the relationship and myself. On our trip, I promise to not bring up. But from her perspective, why wouldn't she want to set things straight, one way or the other? Otherwise, wouldn't she realize that its both something huge on our minds, but it's never really been discussed. Kind of like a huge monkey in the room we're both supposed to ignore?
HiCustomer a quick update....we went to a quick dinner tonight, and all went well. At first, I think she might have have been nervous that I'd bring up our relationship, but of course I didn't. So there was no talk about that. But I think we both had a good time; we talked and laughed about our trip. When I dropped her off she didn't invite me up and I didn't want to assume, so I just dropped her off. She said 'well, I guess we'll keep in touch before our trip'. I wasn't sure how to read that. And I told her if she wasn't busy this weekend and wanted to get together, let me know. So that was about it. Should I just wait for her to make the next move, if she does at all? Should I text her that I had a really good time tonight, or just leave it as it is?
Ok great, I just rated you excellent service, hopefully it all went through! If I dont hear from her in two days, should I just check in to see what's up, or ask her if she wants to do something? I did already say if you wanted to get together this weekend, let me know, so it might be a little much.
haha interesting to say the least! I'm just thinking ahead and I will certainly follow all of your advice and read the signals appropriately. Should I try and be cute/romantic at all? Like give her a kiss on the cheek before bed? Or should I let her initiate anything like that?
Ok got it...last thing for this evening. At the airport or at some point during our trip, I was thinking of telling her real quickly, so as not to get into a discuss...'You havent gotten the best in a long time and I can make no excuses, thats my fault. But, whether we know each other the next 12 days or the next 50 years, you deserve the best of me'. Or should I just avoid that at all costs, unless she brings it up?
Ok good idea...I'm pretty sure, not positive, that what she has perceived as my lack of interest in her or our relationship has what caused. But if I am completely wrong, and its not that, why else wouldn't she at least want to discuss somethings? (at least ground rules as far as the trip goes). I've been trying, but I can't think of anything else that would explain why we wouldn't at least discuss some things (and at a point she did we did need too, which obviously hasn't happened). Can you? If that's the case, I can only assume that she's going to use our trip as a determining factor in our relationship. Otherwise, wouldn't it make sense to at least clear the air?
Ok that makes sense...but regardless or whether we broke up or not (which I still dont even know and the labels are meaningless at this point), why wouldn't she even ask if I was comfortable with her going? Even if she wants to go because its a great trip, wouldn't it just seem to make sense to ask the other person if they still want you to come, knowing it might make them very uncomfortable?
I know its unlikely...but could she that after the events of the past few weeks, could she think that I wouldn't want to be with her now? I've completely mature and understanding of everything shes going through, and havent pushed anything, though at time Ive felt like that. And yesterday, I was as cool and confident as I've ever been, and didn't give off any indication that I was upset in any way.
Ok thanks Dr. Paige....if I dont hear from her by tomorrow, I'll get in touch and said I had a really nice time, and maybe propose doing something over the weekend we both like. I know I told her to let me know, but if she is the leaving the door, she might want me to be straightforward and clear that I want to see her. I was thinking either the movies or a baseball game; she is not a fan of sports, but does like the Yanks. Haha and she knows I hate them, so maybe that would surprise her.
Ok I'll give it a try...You had previously said that she may or may not have made up her mind already. Would I know if she had?
Haha Ok I think I follow...she either isn't sure she wants to be with me or she is sure she does, right? But she hasn't decided to NOT be with me, otherwise I would know that by now? I suppose thats a good thing.
Well I'd have to say shes probably in the "i'm not sure phase', otherwise we would be together, correct? Unless shes waiting for something, I have no idea. Either way, I better keep it up!
And the best way to get her from "im not sure I want to be with him' to 'yes I want to be with him' is....not bring anything up unless she does; give her the best of me every day; try to read her signals; pink shirt!; focus on her and no one else, getting her talking; stay in touch; dont expect her to chase me; dont play games and be straightforward; give her space but dont ignore her; let her know im thinking about her (whether its getting her a shirt for the trip or anything else); ...am I missing anything, or do you have anything to add?
Hi Dr. Paige...I asked about the Yankee game or something else and she said she'd like to, but shes helping her cousin prepare for her c-section on Monday, which is true. But she did respond 'we will have two weeks to ourselves soon:)...so thats seems pretty positive!
Agreed! So, so far so good and its looks like towing the line and being patient might pay off :) And she also said shes looking forward to the trip, and 'I hope the trip will do us good'. Which was the first time she mentioned anything to do with 'us' in a long time, and it seems shes hopeful that we can work through this. Maybe she just needed some time and space to work through some things.
I feel the same...I'll go on the trip as her friend and be hopeful for more. But if she is still in the same place after the trip, I will no longer be willing to wait around for her, because at that point itd be incredibly unfair to me. And yes, if she said she only wanted to be friends, I would walk away. And if she told me that before the trip, thats fine, but I wouldn't even consider going on the trip with her, whether I lose the money or not. I sincerely ***** ***** if she wants to be just friends, shed have told me that already, and not withheld it just to go on a trip. She's someone who usually avoids uncomfortable situations like the plague and has never come across as someone who would do that, but I could be wrong.
I 100% agree. But I'm sure shes taken the time to see this from my point of view as well, and might be thinking about what I'm thinking. And if thats the case, what could she possibly expect from me? Comforting and understanding, or distant? To prove my value to her? I know my own expectations, but its hard to determine what she expects out of me during these 12 days.
Ok thanks...then if I was too distant or uninvolved in the past, she might expect me to be 'there' more. Maybe more into her than I was in the past, which through talking to you, is the conclusion I've reached. I'll approach it as being friends, but be more attentive, warm and comforting. I think thats what shes always wanted, but I haven't given her that in a while.
Thanks for all the helpCustomer..its been real nice to talk things through, and I appreciate all the help you've given me through me millions of messages. After all your help, I'm left with with: on our trip, if I am the same way I've been in the past (distant, not affeccionate enough) then she doesn't want to be with me. And if I have a different approach, and am the opposite of what I've been in the past, she's hopeful for our relationship and this is what she wants to see from me, whether I have that in me. Thanks!
Hi Dr. Paige....I went to visit my sister the past few days and we were talking some things over. But overall, I've shared far more with you then with her. She was just throwing this out there....that maybe she wants to break up but she's having a hard time of doing it 'because I'm too nice of a guy'. Based on what I've told you, does that seem possible? Would someone who felt that still go on vacation with that other person and say we have 2 weeks to ourselves, and I hope it does us good?
Ok thanks...I dont think this is the case, and hopefully it isn't. My sister also thought that this could be her way of 'crying out' for me to be something more to her than just a really good friend; someone to get dinner with and see movies and such.
Hi Dr. Paige...we leave on Sunday, but I just picked up this book (I guess it could be kind of a game too) called 365 questions for couples. There are questions about our relationship, relationships in general, likes/dislikes, goals, etc. Some are simple like whats your favorite food and others are deeper, like What is your favorite memory about our relationship? I've been thinking and realized that we know a lot about each other (likes and dislikes and stuff like that), but we don't really know about each other, as another person (like dreams, fears, etc.). And since her and I are not the best communicators, I thought bringing this on the trip might be a good idea and give a chance to open up to each other about who we really are. Do you think this is a good or terribly bad idea? Should I suggest this, or just mention it and see how she feels about it?
Yeah I was thinking the same thing. And I thought it might be helpful since she is avoiding things, and this might make it easier, or at least slightly open the door. I would not have even thought about it if she hadn't said I hope this trip does us good. Maybe I'll wait a few days to mention, I'm sure its not something she wants thrown in her face at the airport.
Oh absolutely...thats why I'd probably skip the question 'where do you see our relationship going in 5 years'. That's not a good one. I just thought some of the other categories/questions might help us learn more about who each of us is and begin to communicate again, and this communication would ease the talk about 'us' when it does happen.
Definitely, thats my plan. If she's up to give it a shot, I'll ask the more basic questions, and then give her the opportunity to ask basic ones too, or deeper, more serious ones.
Hi Dr. Paige....almost time to leave! Very nervous and excited at the same time. I was rereading all the advice you've given me, and I really appreciate it. I know I havent given her proof that I am fully invested in her or our relationship (though I am, since I was going to ask her if she wanted to move in together). And I'm going to approach the trip as being friends and be hopeful for more. My question is, should part of me remain distant or a bit detached? If I'm obviously way too into her or head over heels into her, do you think that would go in line with her expectations or against them? I know you don't know her, so you're just going on what I've told you.
Thats a good point, I hadn't thought about that. I was unsure if I should initiate anything or wait for her, but she might be thinking the same thing. I guess I'll give that a shot, gradually, and see what happens.
What do you mean by her language?
Ok got it....I will neither push her away or push myself on her. I know this is nearly impossible for you to tell, but what might she be thinking about how she should act? Close, distant, in the middle? Nevertheless, I'll be able to tell tomorrow morning!
Maybe..thanks for all the help Dr. Paige! I'll take your advice, hope for the best and update you when I get back!
Haha ok last thing, promise, then I need to finish packing! If she wanted to be 'just friends', wouldn't she make that at least somewhat clear before the trip? So to avoid any confusion or any mixed messages, and by not telling me, its leaving the door open for me, correct? Thanks! Last one, promise :)
Yeah I think you're right, its one way or the other...haha so what're my odds?
Hi Dr. Paige,
I've been back from the trip for about a week and due to all of your help, I thought I'd give you update. Unfortunately, the trip did not go as I had originally hoped. We got along just fine, though it was clear from the outset, she did not see this trip as a way to reconnect. Though we had a lot of great times, she was also very rude and snotty towards me for absolutely no reason. We didn't hold hands once, she didn't ask for any pictures taken together or anything. But this trip was more of an adventure than a vacation, and for two people looking to reconnect, this was probably the worst place in the world to go. If I could predict the future, I would have booked a trip to Hawaii or Tahiti. This was always my trip, and contained many things that she would never do on her own. On the 7 day boat trip, she was not able to contact her family, no internet, walking through animal poop all day, trying to fall asleep on a boat that was literally walking sideways. I like those things, and she loathes them. She was very stressed and I could tell she tried to get me into a few silly arguments that I managed to avoid. At one point she said she was extremely hurt because she had never been so ignored by anyone before, referring to me on the trip. I'm pretty sure the boat made her delusional because I certainly didn't. I did my best to read her body language and because she wasn't inviting of any affection, I did not follow in her footsteps like a puppy. In fact, I am more proud of myself for the way I acted those 12 days than anything else in my life. I truly did my best. I truly did my best. I was understanding, friendly, funny, had the patience of a Saint. I was literally the best version of myself every minute of the trip.
The conditions were also tough on me, but knowing they were far tougher on her, I held it together. I really feel a lesser person would have just blown up on her and cursed her out. By the time we got back, I had completely accepted that the relationship was over and I was fine with that (she also made sure that I heard her refer to my as her ex-boyfriend). I developed the mindset that she didn't deserve to be with me, and I certainly didn't deserve to be with someone like that. So by the time we landed, I had moved on emotionally and mentally. She said she would contact be about giving me the check for the trip, and I was pretty confident we would never see each other again. Which I was fine with.
Since then she has gotten in contact a few times. Asking how I was doing, wishing me a belated birthday (yep, she seemed to even forget that). She also said that she felt we left things awkward and that she felt very bad about how things went on the trip. To me, what things aren't awkward the last time see an ex boyfriend or girlfriend. She asked if I wanted to get together to talk. I agreed, not because I really want to, but mainly because regardless of everything, I will not give her any reason to place any blame on me. So I didn't hear from her for a few days (she forgot my birthday and said sorry, she's been in her own little world). She got in touch yesterday saying she was getting the vibe I didn't want to talk to her. I replied that I never said that, and she shouldn't judge my vibe based on text messages. She asked if I was available on Thursday, andI told her I might be going on another week long trip, and she said please let me know when you get back or maybe we can meet before on Tuesday.
I honestly am done with trying to predict what shes feeling or thinking, maybe you could get a better read. I don't know what she wants to talk about, if she wants to be friends (which I will politely decline) or she just wants to talk to clear the air for her, so she doesn't feel bad. After all, its been 6 weeks since she initially said she wanted to break up, and now she finally wants to talk. Though given, that trip was the last time and place to have any type of relationship talk. I promised myself after the trip I would not contact her under any circumstances, and that if anything happened at all (whether big or small) would have to come from her. To me, when I dropped her off that was the last time I'd ever see her, but now she wants to get together. Do you have any thoughts or suggestions or advice?
Thanks Dr. Paige...I'd agree that I definitely have the confidence to move on, whether she knows this or not, I have no idea. I can think of very little that she could or would say to me that would convince me to be with her again. But then again, I'm interested. For a girl who brought no surprised for a year and a half, shes certainly brought a lot the last 6 weeks. So I am curious.
I felt like responding to her that at this point, what is there to talk about? I am way past needing an explanation or an apology for the trip. I have no interaction with any ex's, and neither does she. So I'm curious that after 6 weeks of not wanting to talk about a single thing, she all of a sudden wants to. And if she feels bad and just wants to clear the air for her own well being, I think that is a very selfish decision.
Ok will do Dr. Paige....just curious. Since I do have the confidence to move on, which I certainly feel and know I do, and if this makes her feel uncomfortable...then so what? Why in the world would that make any difference to her? Thats what people do after they break up. It was her decision to break up, so what else would she possibly expect and why would this make her feel uncomfortable, if it is?
Ok that does make sense, though I'm not well versed on everything behind it. I'll go and get lunch or dinner for the sake of it and see what she has to say...but, if she feels like she has lost control, do you think she will try and regain it? If so, how? And now that I guess the roles have reversed, does this make me the determining voice? I just want to be as prepared for whatever this is as I was for our trip, which you aided to significantly, and I cant thank you enough.
Ok thanks Dr. Paige...I just submitted a bonus, I hope it went through. I have absolutely no intention of being friends. I would have zero respect for myself if I let her just keep me around just in case she didn't find anyone better, so I refuse to do that. If she was absolutely sincere on wanting to work and communicate about our relationship, I might consider that. But how do I make sure that I am in control and not her? If she was in total control the month of July and through our trip and now I am, in some sense, I wouldn't want to relinquish that. Should I avoid telling her how rude and disrespectful I thought she was? And follow the old adage that if you have nothing nice to say, dont say anything at all? Should I just listen to what she has to say, nod my head and such?
Ok thanks..do you think her intentions might be to get back together? I would really have to think that over if that is the case, and would need to take some time. I just want to be prepared and act accordingly to whatever it is she finally wants to talk about.
Understood....but if I am not willing to be just her friend, and if she is not willing to work on things (and im not sure I am either), its hard to see anything productive or meaningful coming from this.
Understood...I feel like I have the closure I need, I don't know about her. What do you mean about certainty?
Ok got it, thanks Dr. Paige...I went out for lunch with a different girl the other day. I figure its better to get out there again and though I don't anticipate a second date, it was still fun to see someone else. If and when we meet up to talk, should I mention this if she asks. I would think this would upset her a lot, so I don't know...and I dont know why should would think otherwise. Also, I agree with your thoughts about control. But if she wants be as a friend in some capacity, why would not having control even matter at this point? Why would that even be an issue that bothers her if we're only friends? Thanks!
Ok understood...so if she offers friendship and I accept that, than she 'wins', in a sense. But if I decline this friendship, which has been my plan the entire time since she contacted about getting together, than I maintain control?
Since you mentioned control...as we were flying home she was telling a story about a conversation she had with someone about our bags being checked. She then told the exact same story again, but made sure to insert 'ex boyfriend' as a reference to me. I'm pretty sure she wanted to see my reaction, which was absolutely nothing. I just listened and let her talk. It must have upset her that I didn't react the way she wanted, because soon after that she got a little attitude over something small.
Ok got it, I know how to handle the friends talk if it comes up. But on the remote chance she wants to work things out, and in the even more remote case that I agree, does she 'win' then too? Or am I in a position to have the relationship on my terms (within reason) or not at all?
Oh yeah, I completely agree. I have always tried to approach every relationship in that way, as 50/50. I just mean in this current situation...that if she did want to work things out and I agree, doesn't that put her back in a position of control because she got what she wanted? Or if that happened, does the control factor become irrelevant or less important?
Hi Dr. Paige...another silly question of mine. I havent heard from her for a few days, when she asked if I was available on Thursday. I said I wasn't sure, because I might be going away, but it turns out Im not. Should I let her know Im free Thursday or wait to see if she contacts me again? I only ask because if control is more in my favor than hers now, I really would want to give that up. I dont want to seem overly interested in what she has to say, but I am curious.
Ok thanks...I am curious so if I dont hear from her, I'll get in touch tomorrow and let her know I didn't go away. And I became more curious today because my sister and her are facebook friends (Im not on it) and on her page it says 'in a relationship'. I know that reveals very little, but I know she uses it often and immediately put up pictures from our trip, and a few of us together. I know people dont like others knowing all their business because than they would have to talk about it, but I was very surprised to learn that.
Ok I'll try that approach. But do you think she wants to meet just to stroke her ego? Or that if she calls(so to speak) that I'll just come? Doesn't that make me look weak, or have I already established control in this respect?
Yeah but knowing me as well as she does and knowing that she certainly had over done her rudeness, that I though I may accept an apology, I would certainly reject any terms of just friendship? Or why in the world world would she even want to keep me as a friend? Wouldn't she be aware of how selfish this is and unfair to me? This is usually a person that avoids any type of uncomfortable conversation, as I'm sure you can tell by now.
Yep, what a total mystery to me as well. I'm hoping she realizes what a mistake she made....because honestly, I am more proud of myself for those 12 days than anything else ever, and I feel I've accomplished a lot. But you are right, this girl is a complete enigma and there is only one way to find out.
Hey Dr. Paige...I just got a text from her saying 'Hey I had my endoscopy yesterday so I didn't call you because by the end of the day I was still feeling awful from the prep. Can you text me when you're back from your trip. Have a safe trip'.
How should I respond to that? Sorry for asking for help on what should be very simple tasks.
She just got in touch again, asking when I could get together....should I suggest tomorrow, which she originally did? Or leave it up to her?
Hey Dr. Paige...so we're gonna get together tomorrow evening, she asked again. How do you think I should approach this meeting? Honestly, if she is wanting to give me an explanation as to why she broke up with, I'd prefer if she skipped it after six weeks, because at this point I dont need it. Or if she thins I deserve an apology, send me an email of something....I'd prefer skipping that too. But nonetheless, I'm curious as to her intentions. Should I act like I really dont care, since thats somewhat how I feel at this point? I don't want her to manipulate me or the situation to a point where I become vulnerable again and she is the one in total control.
Hi Dr. Paige...just got back from our get together and big surprise, we talked about nothing. In one sentence she apologized for being rude and being a bitch on the trip, and I was ok thank you. And after dinner she asked if I was seeing anyone and I said why are you asking that. She said she was just asking and I said that I wasn't (because though I went on one date, I'm not seeing anyone). We sat in the park for about an hour, but that was literally it. And she texted me thanking me for coming over and that it was nice seeing me. But other than that, nada. I don't understand, since she seemed to clearly want to get together and talk. And there was no way I was going to even come close to initiating that talk, but then she'd be in a position to say no, I dont want to. I could be wrong, it seemed like she wanted to talk, but nothing came out. Can you make absolutely any sense of this?
And she just texted me 'is it ok to ask what your feelings towards me are? and be 100% honest'? How in the world to I respond to that...should I say I will only talk about it in person, not through text. And to be honest, I would much prefer she tell me what she has to tell me before she asks any questions.
Hi Dr. Paige...when she asked what my feelings were towards her I told her that I would talk about it in person, but that Id prefer if she had something to say to tell me first and then she could ask me what she liked and I'd answer honestly.
Very strange, I dont know why she would be remotely interested in what my true feelings about her are. And if she wanted to be just friends, why not just tell me and get it over with. I definitely got the feeling she sensed I had moved on and no longer had any issue whether we were together or not, it seemed to make her uncomfortable.
So we are going to meet again Sunday or Monday and though I expect to talk and get answers, I wouldn't be shocked if I didn't.
Oh most certainly. She asked me to talk and we both knew that. She was uncomfortable for some reason (maybe because I feel very good and confident, bought a brand new car and didn't initiate talking about anything). She could have talked or asked about whatever, but it wasn't until she got home and used the mask of a text message to asked me how I really feel about it.
I agree, if she doesn't come clean the next time, there is absolutely no way I'd see her again, but it would be ridiculous. I've had girls tell me lets just be friends and it was easy as pie for them because they knew for certain thats what they wanted and nothing more. I could be wrong, but I think she is now fearful that I would reject her.
Hi Dr. Paige.....her and I planned on meeting today or tomorrow, but I havent heard back. If she is nervous as to my reaction would be, she might just avoid meeting up, which wouldn't be surprising at all. If I dont hear from her, should I text her and ask her if there is something she wants to tell me but is too nervous to? That has always been her mode of communication she was most comfortable with.
Hi Dr. Paige....so i contacted saying exactly the above. It turns out she was working super long hours. She said that she respected my desire to talk in person rather than text, and that she was willing to do either. I told her I was curious as to her intentions, since I normally dont see or interact with people I've had relationships with. She responded 'Dont worry there not nad bad intentions, i dont normally keep in touch or see someone I had a relationship with either'...any thoughts?
Ok, should I insist on knowing her intentions? I really dont want to have a face to face conversation about 'we should just be friends'.
Well I asked what her intentions were then, and she said' like said you, its better if we talk in person. It's not a conversation that should be taken care of in text'.
Well cause I'm a fool I asked the question, do you want to have the 'I just want to be friends conversation'. And shes responded not that not it, is that what you want to hear. Which I responded no to, but who knows what will come of this?
Hi! I am the one who went to the Galapagos Islands last year with my girlfriend and you always gave my excellent advice, so Im back. Anyway, we got back together last summer. We had talked about how we needed better communication, but we never talked about how. Anyway, something minor happened 2 weeks ago that set her off and obviously brought many other things to the surface. Specifically, she said our communication was horrible and that she doesnt see how things would get better since we had already said we would do this and didnt. She said we needed to get together to talk about how to improve and change some things, which of course I agreed to. However, on Monday she said she had kind of made up her mind. That our communication about wasn't good, and she cant be in a relationship where its like that. I suggested 2 things. 1) that we go to couples therapy and hopefully some one could give us the tools to help us comminucate better. She said she doesnt like talking to strangers about her feelings. 2) I then suggested that we could set aside a day or two a week or a month, whatever we decided, where we could talk about just us (our relationship, our concerns, our future, what we can improve and how). I thought that was a good suggestion but she never gave me her opinion on that. Anyway, she texted me good morning and goodnight yesterday, which has always been our ritual, and I did this morning as well. I am more than willing to make changes personally and in our relationship, but its hard to tell with her. My questions are: Could she be looking to me to find a solution (such as the things I suggested)? Should I continue contact with her or should I just not initiate any contact with her?
Ok I was just wondering because said she had already made a decision, but then she wanted my suggestions. I will text her later today and asks what she thought of my suggestions.I will ask her if she has any as well. I think thats part of the problem as well. She seems so quick to give up. If anything stresses her out or upsets, she usually avoids it all cost and I feel she does that with our relationship as well. Another problem would just not just our communication but how we do it. We always text. Shes never been a phone talker, so I guess this is what shes most comfortable with so she can prepare what she wants to say. Since last year, I actually thought that things were going really well, far better than the previous year in my opinion. Not perfect of course. But maybe her issues with our communication our overshadowing any progress we made. Do you have any other ideas I could suggest to her. I mean, I know there are millions of ideas on how to improve communication? I did like my idea of setting aside time very week to just talk about us, but maybe you have somethign additional i could suggest?
Ok, should I suggest seeing if she wanted to get together in person to talk about any suggestions either of us have. Or should I first see if she thought my suggestions were even worth considering?
Well that did not go to well. She said my suggestions were good but that she needed her space. She said she didn't understand why I would talk about marriage and kids with my family and friends but never with her. I did not tell her this but the main reason I never brought it up with her was that I was afraid something sets her off and she would just walk away, like last year and now. She said that given the problems we've had in the past, shes wonders if they would actually improve and that she would be afraid of what the future holds for us. She said shes confused and that she didn't exactly know if she still wanted to be in a relationship with me and that she needed her space.
Ok will do. I think it would be best if I didn't contact her until when or if she ever wants to come back and discuss those things. Do you agree?
Ok got it. I know Im reaching here...but, when a girl needs her space, how long is that? I don't plan on waiting around and I know every is different, but it she was interested in reconciling, would it be weeks, months?
And then she just texted me goodnight. Whats the point of that? I'll text her goodnight as not to be rude. Should I text her in the morning? If she wants her space then what would be the point?
She texted me goodnight and I texted her back. Should I even bother to text her good morning. Would it be better to just stop any intiation of contact on my end and see what happens? Sorry for all the silly questions, thanks!
You are exactly right. I feel like everything shes saying is directing blame at me. I never said this, I never did this. And she has this crazy there where shes super mad that whenever we ordered food I never offered for her mother and brother. When in fact they eat everynight at 5:30 and her mother cooks everyday. Even though I've I always got them something for their birthdays, mothers day and every other holiday. Its as if shes saying 'yeah thats good....but not good enough'. I feel like she did that a lot. Like 'thanks for the flowers...you should get me them more often'. I dont know if she's using this as a way of indicating our relationship no longer continues if there is not marriage, kids, family cleary promised or clearly communicated. Either way, I agree that is not meeting me half way, not even considering it. It has always how she feels, what she thinks, wht she wants to decide. I dont even know if I would continue in the relationship if she didn't own up to her part of the blame and agree to make the changes and improvements I am as well.
Okay, thanks for the advice. One other thing I realized. Last year it wasn't until I cut ties (however briefly) that she then started to regain interest and was asking me how I felt about which. Which was in stark contrast to the whole month of July where she had me hanging on every word of hers. And this time around, it seemed like every time I expressed or commitment, or the desire to improve of communication, or suggestions on how to grow together, she seemed be less interested. I dont know how likely itd be, but maybe she'll respond to not having me at all, as opposed to me kind of going after her.
Hi Dr. Paige. I spent some time with my sister this weekend, and she said thinks she would come back (because she did last year). But I'm not so sure. Her saying she doesnt want want to be with anyone for a long time, that she doesnt exactly know if she can be with me cause if things are like this now what would the future be like and that she needs her space. So obviously I have my doubts. We havent had any communication since last Wednesday. Please tell me if this is a terrible idea: to write her a letter and/or send her flowers? I know thats a reach probably, or should I just leave well enough alone?
Actually, I was thinking of writing to her saying that Id always be willing to work with her through anything and make changes if needed. But that if this was the end, that it needed to be permanent and final, because I can no longer tolerate her playing with my feelings and playing judge and jury solely on her own. I was going to tell her I had been looking into getting an apartment together and was going to tell her on our 3 year anniversary, which was the plan. And if it is the end, then I'd wish her well and move on. I can't imagine shed like being backed into a corner like that but its the truth. As of now, I would be willing. But if she came back in a month or two, I would be forced to say no because I would only assume this would happen again in the future.
Ok, thanks...if its not too much trouble do you think youd be able to read it over before I mail it out?
Hi Dr. Paige....this is what I came up with. Too long or pleading? Either way, it felt good to get it down. Let me know if I should add or take away or change anything. Thanks again.
I hope this letter finds you well. I have never written a letter like this, so I hope my thoughts and feelings come through. I know you asked for your space as well, so please understand that I send this with only the best intentions for both of us. Some are long, some are short. I haven't been the best at expressing my feelings, but I think I deserve to say these things and they deserve to be read.
I know I am far from perfect and the mistakes I've made are my own and no one else's. There are many things I wish I’d said or times I expressed my feelings to you. I cannot go back in time and change anything. I can only learn from them and hope to make you proud.
I am deeply sorry for not including your mother and brother when we ordered food. I know how important they both are to you and I am embarassed. They are as important to you as my mother and sister are to me. I can only hope to make them as much a part of me and us as they deserve.
Through all of this, I was saddened that we never sat down together to talk. I wish you would have included me in your thoughts and have talked about how to improve our faults, and turn our weaknesses into strengths. I can’t do this alone, we’d have to do this together.
When we got back together last summer, I thought long and hard before we did. When you asked if I wanted to give it another shot, I was prepared to say no. But right before I did, I thought....but I love her. That’s what mattered most to me and still does.
You had said you were afraid of what the future might be like if the same things continued. I am afraid too, of a lot of things. I am afraid of a life without you. I am afraid that the vision I had of finally meeting your family in the Dominican Republic will never come true. I want to meet your Grandfather and I was devastated that I didn’t get to this summer. There are a lot of things I’m afraid of, but I want to live like I’m not afraid. I can't let it hold me back from the life I want to live and share with you.
Over the summer when I came down with Bells Palsy I had nothing but time and my thoughts. While you were away, all the silliness of everyday life disappeared and I thought only of us. I thought of us laughing and crying together, through the good times and the bad. I thought about what our kids would be like, where would live, how we would grow old together. I thought about how we would pick each other up when the other falls and how we would be the man and woman everyone else wanted to be.
I thought we could get a place together. Or I would get my own and then you’d be able to stay whenever you wanted. I began looking at apartments in Tarrytown and Irvington, since that would still be close to our families and our jobs. I had planned on asking you when we went to Las Vegas. When you said those dates wouldn’t work, I thought even better! I would you tell you on our 3 year anniversary. I know I am not the most romantic guy, but I thought this would be.
I honestly don't know if I will ever see you or hear from you again. If you no longer want me in your life, I will understand and I will wish you all the best and happiness in the future. But I will ask you only this...that if this is the end, that it is permanent and final in every way. I know it was never your intention, but I feel as if my emotions and my feelings have been played with. I can no longer think maybe I'll hear from her in a month or two? Maybe she'll want to get together and work things out? I can't live like that and this I why I have written you. No matter where I would be in my life, I would always be wondering what if I didn't send this. It's either a final goodbye or a new hello. If it is the end, I will accept it and walk away forever. But from this point in my life, I must move on and forward, with or without you.
If the memories we have of each other are only in the past, I will look back on them fondly ***** ***** If we are to make new memories in the future, I will proudly stand next to you through every one of them.
I hope we have another first date and that I can open that door for you again.
The moment we met I knew how hard it was to make you laugh. You never fake it and the laugh has to be earned. Whenever I made you laugh I felt so proud because I knew whatever I said or did must have been really funny. So I'll leave you with one more laugh or the promise of many more...
The other day I was at the acupuncturist. She took out all the needles and I was on my way. I stopped to buy a cup of coffee and noticed the guy behind the counter was staring at me. Weird, I thought. So I leave and I’m walking and I come to a stop light. Out of the corner of my eye I see a lady looking back and forth at me. So I’m thinking, do I have something on my face? As I’m getting to my car, I see a man and woman walking their dog, and they are staring me down like I stole myself. I’m like, ok, what the hell is going on. I get into the car, look into the mirror, and see one huge, enormous needle still sticking out of my neck! It could only happen to me, right?
Ok thanks, ***** ***** an english teacher will pay off. I was going to send it to arrive the weekend after this one, since she did ask for space. Or should just send it out now? Again, sorry for all the little detailed questions.
Ok, its been a week with no contact so I think I'll send it this time next week. So that'll be about 2 weeks and at least given her the space she asked for.
So I also had another idea, which might be completely ridiculous, so feel free to tell me. I was thinking of writing another letter to her that I am completely ok with our breakup, that it was the right thing for both of us and thanking her for making the decision and taking it out of my hands. I would apologize for my faults in our relationship. Say that I'm doing good and feeling good, and that I wish her the best.
Maybe she would think shed made the wrong decision? Could be a terrible idea. I could send the first letter next week and if that didn't work send this type of letter in the future.
Hi Dr. Paige. Im resending the letter and was hoping you could look it over again and that if you still think its a good idea to send. I changed a few things but not much. If so, I'll send it our during the middle of the week, and that will have been 2 weeks with no contact. Thanks!
I hope this letter finds you well. I have never written a letter like this, so I hope my thoughts and feelings come through clearly. Please know that I send this with only the best intentions for both of us. Some are long, some are short. I haven't been the best at expressing my feelings, but I think I deserve to say these things and they deserve to be read.
I know I am far from perfect and the mistakes I've made are my own and no one else's. There are many things I wish I’d said or times I expressed my feelings to you. I cannot go back in time and change anything. I can only learn from them and be a better man.
I am deeply sorry for not including your mother and brother when we ordered food and in all the other things we did. I know how important they both are to you and I am embarrassed. They are as important to you as my mother and sister are to me. I can only hope to make them as much a part of me and us as they deserve.
Through all of this, I was saddened that we never sat down together to talk. I wish you would have included me in your thoughts and we could have talked about how to improve our problems, and turn our weaknesses into strengths. It might sound silly, but I was excited at this idea because I thought it would be really great for us. I still hope we have the chance to say this is what we’re going to do and this is how we’re going to do it. I hope you will consider this letter a first step.
When we got back together last summer, I thought long and hard before we did, but I still didn’t know what I’d do when we got together. When you asked if I wanted to give it another shot, I had no idea what I was going to say. Right before I said anything, I thought....but I love her. For better or worse, I realized then that I’d go through anything for you.
You had said you were afraid of what the future might be like if the same things continued. I want us to face our problems and our fears together. I want us to work together, compromise and meet each other halfway. And I am afraid too, of a lot of things. I am afraid of a life without you. I am afraid that the vision I had of finally meeting your family in the Dominican Republic will never come true. I want to see where you used to play as a kid. I want to meet your Grandfather because I know how much he means to you and your whole family, and I was devastated that I didn’t get to this summer. There are a lot of things I’m afraid of, but I must live like I’m not afraid. I can no longer let it hold me back from the life I want to live and share with you.
While you were away, I thought we could get a place together. Or I would get my own place and then you’d be able to stay whenever you wanted. I began looking at apartments in Tarrytown and Irvington, since that would still be close to our families and our jobs. I pictured you cleaning the place like crazy while listening to Spanish music. I had planned on asking you when we went to Las Vegas. When you said those dates wouldn’t work, I thought even better! I would you tell you on our 3 year anniversary. I know I have not been the most romantic guy, but I thought this would be.
I honestly don't know if I will ever see you or hear from you again. If you no longer want me in your life, I will understand and I will wish you all the best and happiness in the future. But I will ask you only this...that if this is the end, that it is permanent and final in every way. I know it was never your intention, but I feel as if my emotions and my feelings have been played with. No matter where I would be in my life, I would always be wondering ‘what if’ I didn't send this and this is why I have written to you. I will not think ‘maybe I'll hear from her at some point? Maybe she'll want to get together and talk things through?’ It's either a final goodbye or a new hello. If it is the end, I will accept it and walk away forever. If it is a new beginning, I will see it with new eyes and an open heart. But from this point in my life, I must move on and forward, with or without you.
If the memories we have of each other are only in the past, I will look back on them fondly ***** ***** If we are to make new memories in the future together, I will proudly stand next to you through every one of them.
I opened the door for you on our first date and I hope this opens a new door now.
The moment we met I knew how hard it was to make you laugh. You never fake it and the laugh has to be earned. Whenever I made you laugh I felt so proud because I knew whatever I said or did must have been really funny. So I'll leave you with another laugh and the promise of many more...
The other day I was at the acupuncturist. She took out all the needles and I was on my way. I stopped to buy a cup of coffee and noticed the guy behind the counter was staring at me. Weird, I thought. So I leave and I’m walking and I come to a stop light. Out of the corner of my eye I see a lady looking back and forth at me. So I’m thinking, do I have something on my face? As I’m getting to my car, I see a man and woman walking their dog, and they are staring me down like I stole something. I’m like, ok, what the hell is going on? I get into the car, look into the mirror, and see one huge, enormous needle still sticking out of my neck! That could only happen to me, right?
Ok, thanks will do. Last question....should I send it after 2 weeks of no contact or wait longer. Thanks so much for all the help!
Hey again, sorry! I reworked two paragraphs I hope youd look over. In the last Im not sure how good of an idea it was if I backed her in a corner and said if this is it, it must be permanent. Just from knowing her, I dont think she would react in a positive way if in that spot. If she thinks I feel shes played with my feelings, shed be defensive. Or maybe that was the whole point of my letter in the first place? Anyway, I'll write it up tomorrow and send it out and be done with it, one way or the other. Thanks!
Through all of this, I was saddened that we never sat down together to talk. I wish you would have included me in your thoughts and we could have talked about how to improve our problems, and turn our weaknesses into strengths. It might sound silly, but I was excited at this idea because I thought it would be really great for us. I want us to deal with our issues instead of avoiding them. I shared some of my ideas and want to share the others with you as well. I hope we are able to say this is what we’re going to do and this is how we’re going to do it.
I honestly don't know if I will ever see you or hear from you again. If you no longer want me in your life, I will wish you all the best and happiness in the future. I will accept it and not look back. I will not think ‘maybe I'll hear from her at some point? Maybe she'll want to get together and talk things through?’ If I didn’t send this to you I would always wonder what could have been. What if we made a plan together and stuck to it? How great would we be if we worked together instead of apart? If it is a new beginning, I will see it with new eyes and an open heart. But from this point in my life, I must move on and forward, with or without you.
Yeah I suppose you are right. Even writing this Im walking on egg shells because in the back of my mind, I immediately think that she will react negatively. At this point, I guess its better to say either be willing to work with me or say goodbye.
Ok, i wrote it all up. I changed a few things and put them below. But it felt good writing it all out instead of thinking about it. I definitely feel better getting my thoughts down. I'll send it out on Thursday and see what happens.
I know I am far from perfect and the mistakes I've made are my own and no one else's. There are many things I wish I’d said or times I expressed my feelings to you. Last summer, I should have come up with a plan for us to communicate better. I am sorry, it was a responsibility I did not follow through on. I am sorry for not sharing my vision of our future together. It is something I should have shared you with above anyone else. I cannot go back in time and change anything. I must learn from my mistakes and be a better man.
Through all of this, I was saddened that we never sat down together to talk. I know it was never your intention, but I feel as if my feelings and input should carry as much weight as yours. You put that burden on yourself and it drove you away. We could have shared that burden and talked about how to improve our issues instead of avoiding them. It might sound silly, but I was excited at this idea because I thought it would be really good for us. I shared some of my ideas and want to share the others with you as well.
I honestly don't know if I will ever see you or hear from you again. If you no longer want me in your life, I will wish you all the best and happiness in the future. I will accept it and not look back. I will not think ‘maybe I'll hear from her at some point? Maybe she'll want to get together and talk?’ I will have no choice but to build a life and a future that doesn’t include you. From this point in my life, I must move on and forward, with or without you.
I think, how great would we be if we worked together instead of apart? I want us say ‘this is what we need to do, and this is how we’re going to do it’. To be open and honest and compromise. I want us to share what each of needs from each other and wants for our relationship. I believe we both deserve that and I hope you accept this letter as a first step. If it is a new beginning, I will see it with new eyes and an open heart.
Hey Dr. Paige....me again. I'm reading these things on the internet that say 'dont send a 3 page letter' like Im sending. That you should write a brief letter or acceptance, apology, and anticipation (something thats really good youd like to tell them about at some point). But I dont really know how manipulative I am in that regard. And that if she asked for her space, I should respect that in every way. Hmmm, Im kinda torn because I have this thing written up and ready to go. I know her very well, but honestly dont know what she would respond to. I know last summer she only seem interested in me again when I seemed to be done with everything (when we got back from the Galapagos I said bye and got out of the car). So I suppose Im torn between, whether to say the things I want to say like I do in the letter and 'playing it cool' with the other type of letter or not contacting her at all. Keeping in my that this is our 2nd break up, its like walking a slippery slope.
Right. I think that second letter isnt such a good idea. And im going to shorten the one I did write just a bit. My only other idea was to continue no contact and see if she gets in touch. Or wait a few more weeks and contact her. As a psychologist im sure youve heard about the site textyourexback. Naturally Ive been looking through it and theres a lot of positive reviews but no way to really tell. Too bad love letters dont always work like in the movirs!
Exactly...I mean, the thing about that is she is a texter. Through all of this we never once saw each other or talked on the phone. She uses texts kind of as a wall and hides behind them in a way, she always has. That is the forum shes comfortable with, but a hand written letter might be unexpected and more impactful and then I guess the ball would be in her court to decide if she wants to do anything. That site is very persuasive, but again its a product being sold. Everything on there says dont text again until 30 days after last contact and a letter and any response would certainly be contact. Part of me says send it just to be over and done with it, and quite wondering if I had. But my letter is kind of an open invitation to try and repair our relationship, and the sites stresses at first its just to open the lines of communication and remind them of the positives of you.
Ok I promise this is the last time ever! If you dont mind, of course. I took out a bit and changed a bit that I thought sounded too needy. I'll write it up and mail it out tomorrow. If she responds positively, great. If not, maybe I'll try that site. Or maybe a negative response will be closure and I wont even bother.
I hope this letter finds you well. Please know that I send this with only the best intentions for both of us. I haven't been the best at expressing my feelings, but I think I deserve to say these things and they deserve to be read.
I am deeply sorry for not including your mother and brother when we ordered food and in all the other things we did. I know how important they both are to you and I am embarrassed. They are as important to you as my mother and sister are to me and they deserve to be treated the same way.
When we got back together last summer, I thought long and hard before we did, but I still didn’t know what I’d do when we got together. When you asked if I wanted to give it another shot, I had no idea what I was going to say. Right before I said anything, I thought....but I love her.
You had said you were afraid of what the future might be like if the same things continued. I am afraid too, but I will not let it hold me back from the life I want to share with you. I want to finally meet your family in the Dominican Republic and I was devastated I didn’t get to this summer. I want to see where you used to play as a kid. I want to meet your Grandfather and shake his hand because I know how much he means to you and your whole family. I am afraid, but I must live like I’m not afraid.
Through all of this, I was saddened that we never sat down together to talk. It was a tremendous burden for you to carry and you carried it alone. I want to share that burden with you. It might sound silly, but I was excited when you said you wanted us to talk about how we could change and improve things, I thought it would be really great for us. I shared some of my ideas and want to share the others with you as well.
Over the summer when I came down with Bells Palsy I had nothing but time and my thoughts. During that time, all the silliness of everyday life disappeared and I thought about where I am in my life and where I want it to go. I thought a lot about of us.
While you were away, I thought about us getting a place together. Or I would get my own place and then you’d be able to stay whenever you wanted. I began looking at apartments in Tarrytown and Irvington, since that would still be close to our families and our jobs. I pictured you cleaning the place like crazy while listening to Spanish music. I had planned on asking you when we went to Las Vegas. When you said those dates wouldn’t work, I thought even better! I would you tell you on our 3 year anniversary. I know I have not been the most romantic guy, but I thought this would be.
I don’t know if I’ll ever see you again. If this is all too late, I will not look back. If you no longer want me in your life, I will wish all the best and happiness in the future. I will think of our memories fondly ***** ***** I will build a new life and a new future. But I must move on and forward, with or without you.
I’ve thought…what if we faced our problems instead of ignoring them? To say ‘this is what we’re going to do and this is how we’re going to do it’. What if we were strongest during our weakest times? To share what we need from each other and what we want for us. What if we worked together instead of apart? To be open and honest, accepting and compromising. How great could we be?
I want to know. I want to see it with new eyes and an open heart. If we are to make new memories together, I will proudly stand next to you through every one of them.
I opened the door for you the first time we met, and I hope we open a new door together.
The moment we met I knew how hard it was to make you laugh. You never fake it and the laugh has to be earned. Whenever I made you laugh I felt so proud because I knew whatever I said or did must have been really funny.
Something hysterical happened to me last week. I’d love to tell you about it sometime….
Oh, Im pretty positive she'll respond....just not sure how.
OR...I could see if she wanted to meet up for a quick lunch next weekend. Would you suggest the letter or that?
I still havent sent the letter, maybe next week. I know its highly unlikely, but after some time away, if she felt differently or felt she made the wrong decision...would she automatically contact me? Would she feel I might not longer be interested and be afraid of what Id do? I know thats a stretch and its pretty unlikely, just curious. Even when she broke up with me last year, she said similar things (I need my space) but we kept in contact, probably because of our trip. Outside of that, this is by far the longest we havent been in any contact.
Right, its probably unlikely anyway but I doubt she would. And on the very rare occassion she has apologized over the last few years, its 'im sorry for xyz...but you did this' and diverts blame and doesnt really take responsibility. Do you the heavy letter would be better or just a text saying I hope shes doing well would bet better. I think it would be pretty hard to even attempt to repair anything over texts, and they can be pretty easily ignored.
Right, and thats interesting what you say about pride and arrogance. I think its pretty odd, but Im sure its pretty common. If she did want to contact me but her pride and arrogance were preventing that, would those same traits prevent her from responding positively to my letter or any contact?
Oh sure that makes sense. I didn't intend my letter to take blame, but I do accept responsibility for my role in the relationship and its faults. Which I should, because as you say, its a two way street. I don't put divert any blame to her (I dont think) cause I know the reaction that would get. I suppose we'd cross that bridge if we came to it. I know this again puts in her in a position of power, but oh well, not much too lose. I tell her I want us to work together instead of against each other. And if she doesn't have the same vision, the same things would repeat over and over.
I plan on my mailing it out mid-mext week, which would be 4 weeks of no contact and 6 weeks of not seeing each other. I think thatd plenty enough time and space. My main goal was to give her time to calm down and hopefully think rationally. Her emotions go from 0-60 in a heartbeat and I know she makes impulsive decisions as a result. Its as if things build up so quickly for her, that it becomes so stressful that her reaction is flight as to avoid anything further bothersome.
I agree, but work in her favor how?
Yes, thats exactly how she is! With anything, no matter how good, she seems to find some negative in it. If I got her flowers...its, you should do this more often. When I got a big raise at my teaching job, instead of being happy for me, its ''are you rubbing it in that you make more or me?' Her grandfather was sick earlier in the year and I asked how he was doing. A few days later she was upset that I had only asked, and not inquired into specific details.
So in light of this...should I even send the letter. Wouldn't she see it as further justification that 'Matt has accepted blame' and that it was right?
Ok, completely understood. In that case, maybe I'll send it out this week instead of next. I might try to be picking the right time when it doesnt even matter. In that case, I might send it to you ONE last time :)
Ok one last thought for the evening. Ive actually been meaning to ask you this for a while...I suppose it is very private information, but all of this is I guess. From my point of view this is her relationship with men. Her father lives in another country and kind of disowns her. She visits him when she goes back, but it seems to always be unpleasant and end in tears. Her step-father, whom Ive met and seems to be a very nice person, cheated on her mother. Her boyfriends: one cheated on her. The other was 20 years older and unknown to her had a family of his own. She became pregnant and was eventually confronted by his wife, though she had no knowledge of it. Subsequently, she had a miscarriage, she says due to the stress of the situation. My question: what effect does this have on a person? What effect does this have on the relationships that person have? In my mind, she is distrustful of all men, maybe understandably. Any time I would go out with friends, her response would be 'are there going to be girls there? Make sure you behave'. Im curious.
Right...for years its felt like she has always been looking for something and that when she doesnt find it (I have never cheated on anyone and never would) she uses any thing else to validate her convictions.
Should I include something like that in my letter? Something like...'I know other people have hurt you and broken your trust in the past. I can't pretend to know what you've been through. But I am not that man and never will be. I am loyal and trustworthy, and deep down, I hope you know this'.
Or should I just leave that can of worms alone?
People like her, who let something (or the search for a negative) bother them and it snow balls to the point where they make impulsive and irrational decisions....are they aware of it after the fact? Im sure they arent aware during. Does time give them the chance to reflect and second guess their decisions? Or is this snowball/impulsiveness so strong that it doesn't allow them to?
Right, completely agreed. I keep on going back to this incident in April. I help my mom out with her house taxes, so I asked her if she had the money from Galapagos (she still owes me $4000!), so I could give to my mom. And she lost it. Saying why are you asking, you think I wont pay you, you think Im one of those people, etc. I was taken aback. She said she wouldn't even see me until she paid me. And then after a few days she said 'ok good news, I still want to see you', like she was doing a favor.
Im going to send the letter week, for as you say, my own peace of mind knowing that I did what I could. But part of me is scared to send it and that she would accept it and want to work things out. For a long time I've thought she had some major issues and now I think that those major issues need professional help, since they dont show any signs of improving.
Hey Dr. Paige, question...
If someone breaks up with someone else and after the fact they regret it, you had said in many cases their arrogance or ego would keep them from making first contact. In that case, do they expect the other person to contact them? I've never broken up with anyone, only broken up with, so I'm trying to understand how the other side might be. Happy Halloween!
Completely understandable....but if you told someone you wanted your space, how or why would you expect them to contact you? Even if you did regret it.
So today was the first time I woke up thinking about not sending the letter. I do want to be with her and I want her to work on her issues. And I was thinking that if she received a letter like that, it might be overwhelming and despite my intentions, she would see it in a negative light (because as you said, she will interpret however she needs to, to satisfy her). I was thinking of waiting a little longer and text her something positive and say I hope shes doing well. Maybe she would respond positively after some time apart. I know the letter would be closure to some degree, but just knowing her, I think my letter would have the exact opposite effect on her that I intend. Any thoughts? Thanks!
Well I better hear from her at some point! She still always me $4000 from past vacations and the last time we spoke she said she would send it in mid-October. I havent gotten anything or heard from her. She told me to give her an exact amount, but I havent sent her anything of course.
Im fairly certain the letter would have the reverse effect on her. I can imagine her reading and saying to herself 'why didn't you say these things earlier' and then get upset all over again. For me, if I send it and it does have that reverse effect, what real closure does that give me? If I send it and it does nothing, I'll feel like I will have only given her the satisfaction of me admitting blame and resolving her of any. Maybe I should just give her the time and space shes asked for. Anytime Ive ever 'chased' her during these times, she always gone the opposite direction. I keep going back and forth.
I think no matter what I'm going to have doubt. I guess I doubted even more because this weekend I saw my sister and she said that on facebook (which I dont have) its still says shes in a relationship. This is the same thing that happened last summer when we broke up and I remember you said, dont read too much into it because sometimes people dont want to talk about a breakup to others. But, its still the same thing.
The last thing she texted me before she said she needed her space, was she doesnt want to me with anyone for a long time and that she didn't exactly know if she could continue with me because shes afraid if things are like this now, what would the future be like. Keep in mind this is her in her hysterical and negative. Shes losing sleep, shes breaking and then, adios.
Haha I guess im a flip flopper. I could send the letter and see what happens. Or I could give her the time, text her soon wishing her well and such and hopefully its breaks the ice and the silence. And then maybe meet up (not to talk about anything, just to meet up) and slowly begin to repair our relationship.
Its hard to tell which route to take...send a letter that is heavy (though puts everything back on her) or take the route of slowly trying to build things back through small communications and meeting.
Yeah I guess texting would violate her space. I thought after a month, that maybe itd be welcome, but maybe not now that you mention it.
No, after our trip last summer she broke the silence. At that point in my mind, I had moved on.
I know I have problems letting go...I never walk away and Im always the type to say and think, ok what needs to be done for both of us. Im like that in everything in my life, not just with relationships and I think its one of my best attributes, though sometimes works against me.
I would need to hear 'Im breaking up with you, its over for good'. If I heard that, fine, move on. The things she said are so open ended, like "i've kind of made a decision', 'I dont exactly know if I can be with you'. To me its a bit open ended, but maybe thats how I interpret it. She never said 'im breaking up with you' or 'its over'. I would need to hear that.
But in other news I do have a date this Thursday!
Thanks! Well, maybe to her its completely broken off and Im just trying to see it in its most positive and hopeful light.
Ugh now im thinking I should send the letter, haha im a flip flopper big time. I told myself I would give it one whole month of no contact and if I didn't hear from her, than I would get in touch. To me, a whole month is plenty of time to cool off, collect your thoughts and know whether this is something you want to be a part of.
Well maybe in her mind its over and there is no need to contact. Yeah I considered that text as well. But thats requires a pretty immediate response and Im not sure how she would see it. And I know shes not a fan of ultimatums. At least with the letter, she can choose to respond or not, and when.
Oh you are so right!
If I sent a text it would be this...
Hi G, I hope you are doing well and in good health. I hope this time apart has given you a chance to feel better and think about things. It has for me and for that, Im appreciative. I don't know how you feel now. But after a lot of thought, I realized I dont need you in my life, but I do want you in my life. If you dont want me in your life, I wish you all the best. Id like for us to sit together and make a plan together, and to share what we need from each other and what we want for us. If a part of you wants the same, I hope to hear from you.
I guess it would be the long, heavy letter or that.
Hey Dr. Paige,
Question, this might be a hard one...if, and its a big if, she responded positively, would the venue of that contact matter? Meaning, if she responded well to a letter, would she have the same response to a text? I dont mean literally the same response, but more along the lines of a positive and/or negative reaction. Would any contact cause the same response (good or bad) or would the context matter more?
Hey Dr. Paige...she texted me today to see how I was doing overall and health-wise (I had bells palsy over the summer). I said I was doing real good and asked how she was. She didnt say, just said she glad everything is good health wise and then she asked how much she old me and I gave her the number. She said she would mail it out soon and let me know when.
I guess there isn't much to make of it, but thought Id let you know.
Yeah thats true, I thought it was odd she didnt respond when I asked her how she was. I had planned on sending the letter next week, should I still? Or wait to see if anything else happens?
Ok will do. I had thought of telling her to just keep the money, but its close to 4000 dollars. That money has been such a source of anger for her, I had thought of telling her to use it for something good - do something nice for her mom, pay for school for her and her brother. Maybe this would just make her more angry.
Hey Dr. Paige...you had say I probably wouldnt hear anything additional from her without prompting...so if I texted her something simple like I saw this movie that youre gonna love and hope everything is good with you. Is that prompting? Or do you mean in the sense of bringing up our relationship. If I send her something like that, what does that then put her in position to do?
Oh no, I wouldnt bring up the relationship at all. I talked to my sister this weekend and she said although its unlikely, it might be a subtle invitation to communicate and that if so, it would be better to try that than send such a heavy letter that focuses on the relationship.
Hey Dr. Paige...so I texted her on Saturday about seeing a movie, thought shed like it, hope shes well. She wrote back saying she was glad I saw it, hoped I was well and that she was ok.
Yesterday she texted me and it caught me by surprise. She wanted to know if I had been watching a few TV shows we watched together, and neither of us had. And told me her family got a dog. It was all very cordial.
So I obviously scrapped the letter. I was thinking of texting something about Thanksgiving this week and maybe over the weekend, say if 'I'm not sure what your schedule is like with work and school, but if you'd like to meet up, let me know'.
Not to talk about relationship stuff. And if she asks, itd be just to get a quick bite to eat and catch up. I know this kind of gives her the power (I think), but she wants me to prompt her instead of her bringing it up.
Oh no, I definitely wouldnt text her everyday and of course it be preferable if she initiated. Do you think it would be okay if I suggested getting together in a week or so? But posing it in a way that can let her decide how to move forward if she chooses.
Right, I had thought the same. I thought of initiating a meeting after talking to my sister. When I told her she texted me she said, 'shes trying to get her claws in you again'. Haha my sister is not the biggest fan.
But I can almost anticipate your answer...that if she doesnt, what does that say about her and any relationship in the future? Which is completely understandable.
My sister also suggested she might not initiate because she feels too foolish about the petty reasons for breaking up (not that her ultimate reasons were, but whats set her off both times certainly was). In the nicest way possible to say, I think shes a bit of a coward. This is someone who stopped going to college because she was afraid to talk in front of a class.
Plus, maybe she would prefer I initiate because of the above, and because in some ways she expects me to make amends to her complaints (I do want xyz with you in the future, etc.).
Just a thought....
Interesting you said bait...I told another friend about her recent communication and she said shes fishing.
But what you said made me think back to last year. She asked if I wanted to get together and talk, and didn't talk about anything. Then when I got home she texted me asking how I felt towards her. I said that we could talk in person and that I deserved to hear what she said. So we got together again and she wouldn't say anything until I said 'my feelings for you havent changed'. She literally would not divulge or share anything of hers before I had already somehow confirmed what she wanted to hear. I must had made it too easy for her.
Well I thought of asking her to get together, but not bring up anything about the relationship until she does...whether we went out 1, 2 3 times I had no intention of bringing up anything, I know that must come from her. But perhaps your right, that even suggesting it would make it too easy for her again.
Hi Dr. Pagie.....so her and I had the following conversation, via text, today:
Me: So when I got in today the entire house smelled like apple crisp, my mom has been a baking machine latey. Haha it made me laugh to think of how quickly you can finish a whole tray of it. Her: Thats nice!! lol whats funny is that I was thinking about that today. I can just imagine all the things shes baking. Me: Haha oh you have no idea,. Thats one good thing about the cold weather, its baking season! Her: Thats great!! Youre so lucky, are you having family again this year? Me: Just me, my mom and sis, and my cousin is coming over. Are you guys having family over? Her: My mom is going to the bronx early. I work from 8 to 4 so I will just be home by myself after work. She will bring me food. Me: Ohh ok. My sister has to work on friday so Im going to drive her to the train station tomorrow evening. Her: I work Friday too. Me: Did they give you the weekend off at least? Her: Yeah I have the weekend off. I do go in saturday for 4 hours for a bit of overtime. Me: Ok well thats good. Her: I will be off for a week soon. I dont know if you remember but I had plans to go to DR but im not anymore, just going to stay here and relax. I dont have the mind set to go away. Me: Yeah I remember, to see the concert. Sometimes its better just to hang around and relax. Her: Yes it is. Her: Hows your bells palsy? Me: Its really good! Im going two more times and then im done. Hahah my last session they are going to email me all of the before and after pictures so I can see. Her: Thats really good. I’m very happy for you. Me: Thank you…its was very rough at first…but im thankful I found the acup when I did. Her: I know, I thought that was not going to work but I guess I was wrong and it did. Me: I wasn’t sure either, but luckily it has. Haha I told them a few weeks ago that my mom didnt want me to go to a bunch of ‘quacks’ originally…they thought that was pretty funny. Her: Your mom if funny. I remember her telling me that all they wanted was your money lol. Me: Haha oh she must have texted you that while you were in DR because I never heard that. Her: She texted that, she always kept me posted. Me: Shes hysterical. Well even though you have to work tomorrow, have a very happy Thanksgiving and please give my best to your family. Her: Happy Thanksgiving to you too and please give my best to your mom and sister as well.
Any thoughts? I was curious as to why she wasnt in the state of mind to travel. But I thought it my be because of us, but didnt want to bring it up...and it was said in a why that I could have said 'oh why didn't you go? Why arent you in the state of mind to travel'? Thanks for any feedback you can provide, and have a Happy Thanksgiving!
Hi Dr. Paige....so I woke up to this text from her:
I cant stop thinking of how you keep me in mind, your message yesterday of how you thought about me with the apple crisp just made me think you still have not forgotten me, I have not either and as the holidays are right around the corner and we are not together I cant keep it to myself anymore but I have been crying myself to sleep on many nights because I miss you sooo much. Im at work right now and I cant help the tears. I hope you have a Happy Thanksgiving!
Well I guess i was sentimental. I said I missed her too and asked her if she wanted to get together. We are getting together on Saturday, which (no joke) is 3 years to the day that we met.
I will listen to everything she wants to say. Considering she is not much of a talk, im not sure what to expect. But as youve said, the same exact things will continue to plague her and thus our relationship until they are dealt with once and for all. But how do I ask that? Or even suggest that 'I think you have serious issues that youve had long before you met me, but have drastically affected our relationship?' I honestly think therapy would be best for her, or I would go to couples therapy, but is that a conversation for further down the line? Im not too sure what to expect or what to demand, maybe? We will talk, but I dont know if a super serious talk would be best for the first time. Maybe ease into things again and then slowly and gently bring things up?
HiCustomer...Im not sure if you got my last message, but you should be able to see above.
So on Saturday we got together and finally had a long talk and in the end, agreed to get back together and give it one more shot.
She initially wanted to hear what I had to say but I insisted, that since she already broke up with me twice, shed would have to express herself first. She laid out her concerns.....she said she was extremely angry that I didn't tell her exactly where I was going with my mom until the last minute. And then I guess the big one - that she wonders...'is he really committed? Does he want marriage? Children? Does he ever even think about those things'.
Then I laid out mine....how I cant be with anyone who runs away at the first thing that upsets them. That how I think she lets one negative emotion dig and twist into her, to the point where it snowballs and she has no choice to run away. I also told her that though its not her fault those things were done to her, but I feel her past relationships (and father figures) have had a very negative impact on her and us. She agreed.
It was probably the best and most productive and honest conversation we have ever had. After three years! So anyway, we laid out a plan for communication and I will do what I can on my mind. Do you have any suggestions?
Also, I think she might be a bit bipolar. Two months ago shes saying "i've made a decision, I need my space'. Last week it was 'Ive been crying myself to sleep because I miss you so much'. And though the last few days have been great, within days its been 'I love you forever and ever; the love of my life; are we still going to Bora Bora like we planned'?
So obviously, Im hopeful but also apprehensive. She also declined the idea of any idea of therapy (or couples therapy) because she doesnt want to talk to strangers. I know with someone like her I am to expect the same type of behavior in the future....but what can I do on my end? Besides keeping things positive, being open and honest, communicating my thoughts and feelings when necessary?