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    @Shelbyville don’t worry about it. Congratulations on your promotion. I knew you had the skills and just needed to believe. I hope you manage to get a break and enjoy the downtime.

    @Danny I know I was harsher than the others but that’s  because I can’t be entirely impartial as I was used too. I’m glad @Kkasxo and @Shelbyville replied in depth and gave you some comfort. We can all use that alongside a healthy dose of reality. Good luck. I hope ‘B’ experiences some of the pain and weight lift. If you are given the chance make amends in person. Take her something small, a gesture you remember personal to her. Pay for coffee. Don’t over do it, but it will help. Apologising over text, letter etc. never brings about complete closure to the chapter that passed. There’s been times I’ve bit my lip to keep the peace and communication open because I hate hurting loved ones but in person everything poured out, the truth, it was raw and much needed way to really process those swirling thoughts and feelings. He needed to hear it and feel it too to realise the true consequences of his actions and accept accountability.

    • This reply was modified 5 minutes ago by Sammy.

    @Shelbyville @Tim would really appreciate your wise words too if poss before Sun 🙁


    Ermm @Danny one thing I promised I’d never do is ignore someone who asks for help directly.

    Reading your message was hard because I can draw parallels with how you treated ‘B’ and it kind of resurfaced my own pain.

    I believe no one is beyond redemption. We can all make bad decisions. You at least are owning up to your erroneous ways. I wish another contributer @Tim was able to respond to you man to man. I think you would learn and benefit a lot from his experience.

    Asking ladies for advice is always going to be hard as there will be a natural bias. With me I can’t sit here and molly coddle so some of what I say will be real talk but with no intent to be spiteful and objective as possible. The other ladies @Kkasxo and especially @Shelbyville are very non judgemental so maybe they’ll be able to offer more sympathy and a different light on your situation.

    Firstly, I understand you got hurt no one deserves to be cheated on let alone betrayed by a best friend. I’m sorry you went through that, I can imagine the pain especially when you love some one and it turns out they didn’t love you back in the same way. I hope you have now dealt with this pain because your brother is very wise!

    Being hurt by no means allows you to then go and hurt other women! THAT WAS A JACKASS MOVE! I’m coming to learn that’s very common for males when dealing with 1st heartbreaks. Why can’t you keep it in your trousers and reflect sooner?!You need to really reconsider the advice you take because it’s obvious it’s been bad and because you are insecure you are impressionable, so must have done it for clout/impress the lads/to fit in. Maybe even reassess who you hang with if that’s how they believe women should be treated. It’s despicable. Please don’t say boys will be boys because then you need go f yourselves and not hurt genuine people with infantile behaviour!

    The fact you feel remorseful at least shows there’s a conscience there and some moral compass. I don’t want to make you feel shittier.

    Secondly, I’ll be balanced there are some women who do what you said. They use a nice guy for expensive gifts and feign affection.  But doesn’t seem you were nice guy being taken advantage of. You trying to get even by then benefitting from sex makes you just as bad. If you have a mutual agreement then that’s fine you’re consenting adults but anyone doing sexual favours with expectation of a gift in return or money is no different to prostitution in my eyes. It definitely isn’t love!!

    I can see why you have lost respect for certain women but that doesn’t mean you label every single woman as a user.

    You misjudged ‘B’ due to immaturity and she clearly wasn’t like that. From what you wrote ‘B’ showed no signs of that behaviour and seemed to have been genuinely invested in you and I think you let your own fears and insecurities sabotage it. The fact she never resorted to sleeping with you to impress you shows she values herself. You let your own insecurities convince you that she was a cocktease or after your money etc.

    You really disrespected her and it appears you took advantage of her good nature and used her as an emotional support/crutch.

    As a woman to feel afterwards you were used by someone you genuinely respect/love is incredibly degrading and painful. I’ve experienced that with my ex who I still have love for but have lost trust and respect in him. Even the most confident of people can be left feeling questioning their self worth after spending time with someone toxic. I’m afraid that’s what you were at that time.

    It could be one of two things;  she wanted to see the best in you, she wanted to believe that she could heal you. Women who are good hearted and loyal will want to ‘fix you’ they stand by you when everyone else deserts you but sometimes in the process unbeknownst to themselves, they end up breaking themselves too.

    Or she could have been fragile, suffering very low self esteem and you took advantage of her vulnerability.

    I think the fact she didn’t sleep with you points towards the fact she was a very nurturing person and you took advantage of that kind heartedness and good nature. A person with very low self esteem would not uphold their values because they have no boundaries they break them all. I know many women who think by sleeping with a unavailable guy she’ll finally secure him and get him to commit. The fact she didn’t do that is telling and I too believe you’ve cocked up big time.

    I think that’s why you have such regret because you see you had a rare gem but treated it equivalent to crap on your shoe. You clearly didn’t value it.

    Of course she would be upset and want an explanation for your behaviour she is a human being with emotions not a shiny object. You should have given her full closure. She clearly believed in you and if you shared stuff with her then you were building an emotional connection so of course she must have got attached, like you said you awakened feelings in her with no intention to commit. That’s cruel. You must have really left her with a lot of questions and its those questions which we want answers to that cause the pain to worsen.

    This is my view only, @Shelbyville and @Kkasxo can add their thoughts hopefully but I think it takes a real man to take accountability. It’s a step in the right direction and part of growing up. You owe her an apology for sure and it can go a very long way as receiving one has done for me.

    Something i learned in addiction recovery because i became reliant on alcohol when my ex mistreated me. Its applicable to relationship as love is a like a drug. Step 8: Make a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all. Step 9: Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them.

    So never do it over text that’s feeble and insincere if you mistreated her you apologise in person. Also you need to let her dictate the pace. Don’t apologise to gain something for yourself i.e. underlying belief you are owed a 2nd chance. It’s been 10 months so a lot could have changed. If you get in touch make it clear it is to apologise. Respect her and be prepared to hear some harsh words.

    The rest I don’t know if it will work out, I don’t know if your reasons are selfish or if your motives are sincere. If you really want it then work on yourself and be that man she could see and believed in. Improve, grow and change otherwise apologise at least and let her be with someone who would value her.

    @Kkasxo thanks for your quick reply, you are so kind. You are right each person will in the end do what they feel but I’m big believer in learning and not repeating mistakes. My heart was leaning towards softening and giving my ex a chance but after reading Danny’s post that pain I went through felt very sharp and fresh again. I don’t know what to do. I will wish him happy birthday and maybe leave it at that for now.

    Do you feel by you and Mr A being so comfortable and available with each other you are hindering yourself? Like co dependent? I feel my ex and I were. If you feel like that initial love is gone and you are like an old couple then would it not be better to have a clean break? So you can experience new love without a safety net? I feel even if my ex and I don’t reconcile but he stays on the radar so to speak I’ll never really learn to be strong for myself. I’ll never do myself justice in being what I’m capable of alone without that safety net. We deserve more than remnants of old love or just feeling comfortable. We deserve to feel more than okay? Someone who keeps you feeling alive by pushing you to be bolder and better each day. Love is an action.

    That’s why I’m stuck and I do believe we should be kind to ourselves but not to the point where we become motionless. Which is why i personally like to gain awareness from others experiences to prevent falling into another unnecessary difficulty. So confused. Maybe choosing the harder more challenging option to confront is the right way. For me that would be to drop the familiarity (him) and move on to find someone one day who will actually love me for me and want to grow together.

    You’ve been incredibly brave and strong though to have handled so much adversity! Thank you for giving me help appreciate it ever so much especially without @Shelbyville and @Tim being able to correspond xx

    • This reply was modified 18 hours, 12 minutes ago by Sammy.

    Ahh @shelbyville are you enjoying your break? I need advice. I don’t know what to do with the ex! It’s his bday on Sun!!!

    @Kkasxo so happy to see you posting, I know Shelby will be delighted. I would love any advice on my situation as I recall reading your Mr A started to try woo you back too. What do you suggest based on my above posts?

    I hope you are well. I know that feeling of just wanting to get some certainty to be able to make new plans and put change into motion for the future!! X


    Hi @Shelbyville it’s good to know you’re okay! When you go quiet it’s hard to tell if you are overwhelmed with your anxiety and feeling like I’m draining to reply to /busy with work. I kind of worry because I think I relate to you a lot so have a virtual bond so I worry if you’re doing okay. Maybe I need help? Haha!

    Congratulations!!! That’s a reflection on your skills and talent, if a newbie has been chosen to be boss. Well done! Are you thrilled or just wanting to run because of the added pressure?

    Anyway you have a long weekend off so switch off and enjoy your time with your bf what do you do for downtime? Does it feel good to say that, after all you’ve endured -new BF? You said you wanted someone who spoils you, shows you they think you are the bees knees and doesn’t take you for granted. He’s showing you that, so stop shying away, you deserve it. You have someone here who is telling you they want you, isn’t that what we all want someone who shows us they love us for us, so don’t RUN! Embrace the expression, your ex never said I love you. Everyone deserves to hear that and when someone is feeling it they will not not say it!

    It’s great you feel so comfortable with each other. I’m happy somehow he has done a complete u turn from what we all were thought and I’m happy I was wrong about him!

    There’s no point you worrying about the future. It’s early days so whilst you are lucky to see each day so regularly, do what you enjoy and you’ll gather if he is genuinely what you want out of a relationship.

    Thanks for your views on my ex its so good to get perspective. I still haven’t told my bestie. Trying to own it and appear sensible to my F&F at least.. on here I can be unashamedly honest. That’s the reason I signed up to express the things that need to be outed otherwise what’s the point if you have to censor yourself on anonymously too?

    You made an interesting point about Tim but it’s not about how he needed to contact me first like Tim for it to hold weight. I know I contacted him but I’m not going to reciprocate playing games, I’m not going to think with pride or ego and say because he never contacted me first it’s an automatic dismissal. You know as well as me, feelings are complex things to face and he took a huge step in taking accountabilty and I commend him for that.

    What is a valid point about Tim’s situation and probably why they are successful is that they were never together in the same way and reunited like we did with our exes. You and I have been past that elusive 2nd chance, we gave too many. Also Tim and her both felt something but didn’t enter a fully fledged relationship instead they or should I say his partner did what very confident, clever and wise individuals do, parted way’s at the right time, with unconsumed feelings, before giving into chemistry. Leaving space for if something was to happen it would happen on the right terms, right intentions that emotional bond was never severed in the way ours was. He was smart enough to fix up because he knew she was worth a fight.

    And that is what stops me running away with the idea of a “happy ending”. I have grown up myself, I want better for myself, It’s just too late. Too much has happened, if we were to reunite the afterthought with every touch and sleeping with him would be difficult. That niggling thought, I wasn’t enough despite all we shared, intimacy is huge thing for me and as a woman it’s a gate and once someone has been let through that gate but subsequently left then that bitter feeling of it wasn’t enough or feeling used is hard to shrug off. I don’t know if I’m making any sense.

    Speaking of attachment issues I think we definitely ended up with a co dependency of sort. How do I handle this without the extra headache and conflict? His family I’ll always have room for in my heart but not in the same way as before I guess.


    @Lucie You are an incredibly sweet person, sometimes when you are good to others and they fail to see it when you want, it makes you question everything about your own worth but I realise now that it wasn’t all my fault which is why I want something better but it’s all so difficult, I’m trying to work it out in my head but the heart keeps piping up with the fond memories. Hearing a stranger see you for who you are is a very warm feeling. So thank you! I really hope the sickness eases! x

    @Shelbyville everything okay with you? Would love to hear from you x


    @Lucie thank you so much, I’m here to listen to you too. I’m sorry I’m no help with PTSD or attacks but anything else you wish to share I’ll always attempt to answer x


    @Shelbyville am I glad to hear from you! Lucie isn’t pregnant, at least I don’t think, it was my only suggestion for nausea. I know ginger works great for nausea for pregnancies, I thought it may help for nausea from PTSD/attacks. I was hoping @Kkasxo or you would come online and offer better advice.

    How are you? Good weekend?

    This weekend, I went to see my exes parents who had been reaching out since the breakup. I thought it was time and do it before Tier 3 is enforced. They both were the most loveliest and perfect in-laws one could ask for. His mum always spoiled me like I was her very own. They valued me more than he ever did even though we split too many times. They were ever so good to me, and one thing my mum instilled in us always remember and repay kindness with kindness. I wanted to explain and thank them in person.

    I took his sister an engagement gift and I’m so glad she wasn’t there. She had discussed me being her bridesmaid since forever and after what happened I knew if she was there I couldn’t face saying no to her request in person.

    I took his parents a hamper and flowers, their face lit up, they clearly weren’t expecting it. I felt elated to hug and see them again but equally, I felt so awful, I wasn’t planning on saying much, I struggled with what I should say. I didn’t want them to think differently about their own son. Whilst I sat there, my feelings were swaying. Do I remain fully immersed or say goodbye? As we talked and laughed, I realised I had to start anew, I would need to create some distance. Being embedded in their special moments would be difficult. I could see they desperately wanted us together and to reconcile. It was so hard.

    I told them I really love them all, that the ex and I were just perfectly wrong for each other. I’m sorry it didn’t work out but I will never forget how they welcomed me into their family, accepted me for who I was. I asked for forgiveness for any pain they had to endure as a result of our split. I said whoever he chooses will be blessed with the most amazing people as family. Loads of tears ensued. I told them this was the least I could do for them always being good to me.

    They said I would always hold a spot in their family and they would welcome me with open arms anytime. If I needed anything they were here and so sorry their son had not treated me better. They said they would love to stay in touch but understand if I didn’t. They wouldn’t force my hand and their daughter would understand.

    It was heart-rending. It hurt like hell saying goodbye to people who love you so unconditionally but I owed it to them to tell them in person how much they meant and how grateful I was. I knew I wouldn’t be visiting them again and any contact would be limited to texts or a call for special holidays and any physical appearances would be by chance.

    As I left, it was sod’s law he pulled up into their driveway. I chose a stupid day – Sunday! I made a brisk walk and got into my car, wiping my tears and he came after me and got in.

    I told him we had said everything and I had only come to say goodbye to his parents. He said what do you mean goodbye? He looked panicked and said he missed all that we had and he hadn’t stopped thinking about me since he last saw me but was giving me space like I asked and hates himself for not growing up sooner. I said I honestly forgive you but it’s a little too late, instead of seeing what you had in front of you. You thought running from me would solve all your problems, you convinced yourself at first that my flaws made me not good enough, then you pretended to yourself for so long you didn’t want me, you never fought for me, you settled with the thought I deserved better and someone else would give me that when I always just wanted you.

    Now it’s over for good. I want better for myself and I don’t want to give you another chance to prove you don’t want me. I always knew you were too selfish. His cheeks started to flush red, I knew from the last time that he was about to bawl. I just couldn’t deal with that, so I said if you have any ounce of respect for me, get out of my car let’s part amicably with love and wish each other happiness before it gets too emotional again. He left and as he said it’s not over because I love you.

    I literally started to tremble and had to pull over on the next road. Wtf? So many chances I gave this man and now that I’m moving on, he decides he wants me. Is he a narcissist or just an immature boy who has finally become a man and realised his immaturity and what real relationships are? Realising what I did to myself and the harm I brought on myself because of that relationship; self-criticalness,  low self-esteem, and drinking proves this type of love is not healthy. Then my betraying heart which still cares hates seeing him hurt.

    What have I done? When I start to move on he opens up or is he just hoovering? He text me when I got home a picture of the photo collage I made him for our last year’s Halloween/his bday party. It’s his birthday the day after on 1st. Is he just wanting me to shower that same love or attention on him again? When I did he found it too much and was ungrateful, how ironic now that is what he misses? What a mess!

    Have you stopped all contact with your main ex now? And the exes you didn’t stay in touch with was it because they meant nothing? I don’t know what to do with him, I can’t cut him out like he never existed that’s I don’t know cruel, the very minimum I’d wish him well over holidays. IDK?!

    Anyway, a break from that mess, Shelby why are you so tough on yourself still? Are you not happy? You’ve shown a lot of growth and resilience too, it’s something you should be proud of. I feel like you are holding back right now and if that’s more settling for your cool but emotions expressed are better even if messy, know even though I harp on about me, I’m here and would love to give back and help you progress as you’ve helped me so much. If I’m becoming a drain then tell me to plug it and I’ll stop posting about myself x


    Hi Anonymous,

    I don’t know if you will ever read this but I noticed this forum was quiet and I did not want you to ever feel ignored. A lot of what you described I have experienced. There’s a forum created by Shelbyville in the relationship section, that’s helped so many, maybe you can read that or post there if you need advice/listening ear. You’re not alone, do not give up, I wish you happiness 🙂

    @Sammy x

    • This reply was modified 1 week, 6 days ago by Sammy.

    @Lucie thank you so much! That’s so sweet of you. Forgiveness will not change my past but I really believe it will change my future. Part of love is learning to forgive and I had a lot of love for him. He was brave to apologise in person and I was strong to forgive. Now to forget to become happier.

    I’m equivalently pleased to read you are getting to a stable place. I hope things keep improving for you, you deserve every bit of happiness. I, unfortunately, don’t have any experience in PTSD or suffering regular panic attacks so I hope @Kkasxo or @Shelbyville can get back to you. @Tim had to take time away 🙁 . @Shelbyville is usually inactive on weekends. I doubt you are as impatient as me in waiting for replies, but I wanted to reply so you knew you’re not alone.

    Ginger biscuits are good for nausea in pregnancy? x



    You know what Shelby, you’re right. I’ll never know if he had conscious knowledge of what he was doing to me. However, he actually confronted his mistakes and apologised in person. You reap what you sow, when you hurt someone who was good to you or anyone for that matter, a sincere apology is always made in person, not just via a call or text. That’s how you make real amends by taking accountability by looking at the person you’ve wronged in the eye and being humbled. Anything less as a human is just insincere and cowardly.

    He stepped up even if it was 7 months too late, I will always care about him because that’s part of my nature and as immature as he was, I now need to put my ego aside and forgive him completely as he apologised in person. He asked me if I’d truly forgive him and at this very moment, I do. Tim did probably the equivalent and used the ladies he encountered but by taking culpability directly in person he was able to get atonement and most likely it allowed the ladies like me to let go of any pain they were hanging onto. Hence why Tim is a well-balanced individual now and getting good karma. So I hope my ex can become that too.

    The meeting gave me the opportunity to answer the swirling questions and tie up loose threads in my head, it confirmed beyond the chemistry, I was over him and wanted better for myself, that is huge progress for me. If he had been selfish and not made attempts of contact via his sister, I do wonder how long it would continue to consume me.

    The alcohol would probably have lured me whenever the thoughts became too much but now I have peace, I’m getting to a place of self-control and even if I decide to socially drink, I don’t think it will ever be to this extent. I’m quite happy being sober for now though, I’ve dropped a few pounds too. Thanks, Shelby,  you’ve helped me to let go of that last bit by forgiving him.

    One of the major takeaways from this has been that if I ever dare to take a leap back into finding love. I will not settle for anyone. I will be willing to walk away from someone who doesn’t show through his actions he is crazy about me, willing to spoil me and be extra. I want a confident man who knows what he wants and understands my needs equally. I want what I give. No more breadcrumbs.

    I will make a conscious choice to not allow myself to instinctively be attracted by the stereotypical “bad boy” who always just wants passion and nothing deeper. A confident mature man who is looking for a mutual deeper connection, not a narcissist or immature boy who feels he needs to play these mind games.

    No more games. The ones who are extra used to make me squirm but that’s because I’m understanding now it’s more to do with how I feel about myself, now I know these are the good ones who might be extra initially but through the duration of the relationship when the honeymoon phase wears off will be loyal and balance out. Whereas the wishy-washy/hot and cold sort is just a mind fuck.

    Although I did everything in my being to make that relationship work,  I can’t blame him for ME not having the self-worth and confidence to call it myself and walk away. I need to accept that as my problem and learn to not repeat the mistake in the future.

    Wow. I feel so so much better and lighter! You are such a good sounding board. I really don’t understand how you let Martha overpower you, you’re intelligent, non-judgemental, kind, loyal great work ethic, self-aware (maybe too much!) Those are the few things I’ve picked up from our correspondence in person you must be even better, any guy should be lucky to have you!

    It’s good you’re taking the legally entitled breaks. You got the job because they saw potential. You got the job because you passed rigorous assessments so start to feel the confidence in your ability more. If you did it yesterday. You can do it again. You can’t doubt yourself because these corps will show ruthlessness and replace you. The job market is too unsteady to make rash decisions to quit even though I’m a big advocate for being happy in the job you do, it takes up a huge amount of hours of your life. Think smart. At least you’re not silly and thinking of throwing in the towel solely for a partner like someone did! Cough Tim cough, he gave up his job and moved for his ex :p. I miss your wise words @Tim. Could have done with a male perspective to add to Shelbys sterling advice..but I hope you are OK!!

    It’s good the tablets have calmed things down for you. You sound much better. The way things are headed I think the company I work for has approved us to WFH until next year possibly up to spring. I hate that! I love being around and bouncing off others in the office. I had a new colleague join us who was amazing and she really made me feel better. A ray of sunshine, so rare! Being at home can get lonely on top of that the Covid restrictions!!

    Enjoy it, most likely this bubble will be there for some time yet so that means you have months to be together, get to know each other deeply, and can WFhis, that’s good as your relationship will be past its infantile stage and much more serious. So by then, I think if things do change you’ll feel more confident. Also spending this much time together daily is a lot and hasn’t caused issues, so that’s great! Is he spoiling you and bringing you chocolate and a hot water bottle for your hormones! I hope he spoils you and treats you special. Tell me more about him now that your anxiety is not making you doubt him.

    Has lockdown affected you much from seeing family and friends?

    Contact with my ex is a hard one, I know being pals is not an option. I’m clear I don’t want anything but I care about him and I just don’t get how people cut out people so easily, naturally with time comms would decline, going cold turkey without wishing HNY or HB is weird to me as for me to be with someone or have them in my life means I value them. How did you keep friends with your other exes? Was it because they never were serious as the ex you started the thread about? x

    • This reply was modified 2 weeks, 1 day ago by Sammy.

    Hi @Shelbyville

    Thank you so so much for replying, I know your job is very demanding so I appreciate you corresponding ever so much. I haven’t told a soul which makes it hard to work through by myself.

    You’re so kind and generous with your time, I hope it is not at the detriment of yourself. Are you able to be healthier by not working non-stop and taking your legal breaks?

    You are 100% right I need to work on my self-love, it’s something I have been aware of for a while. The thing is I was never a person who suffered from low self-esteem but the toxicity of this relationship caused my self-esteem to be eroded.

    It’s difficult when you really care and love about someone, you naturally end up putting them first. Then when that very person is the one that ends up hurting you, you end up believing that’s all you’re worth. Causing you to lose your self-respect, the self-confidence to voice what you need. Deep down I knew something was amiss but I could never walk away from him because I’d lost all the confidence in myself.

    I’m honing in because it’s the thing that will need resolving for me to let go and completely forgive him. I’m quite spiritual, not the best but my morals mean I only ever sleep with someone I love, I need an emotional bond. I’ve never done casual flings, I believe you should only be in a relationship with a person you see yourself marrying. Otherwise, it is a recipe for heartbreak.

    Over the course of the relationship, he continued to sleep with me and as a person who loved every part, warts and all, to give my body to someone is significant, sex equates love to me, and then to get confirmation he was happy to do “that”(use me) whilst also feeling FOMO, nitpicking and loss of attraction hurt me to my core. The pain it is giving me I can’t describe. He never addressed this in our relationship if he had maybe I would have had the self-respect to walk away from someone so disrespectful. I see it now so clearly when he wasn’t horny he didn’t treat me very well.

    He had reduced me down to just that, a sex object. He had stopped remembering the special dates, taking me out, he never spoiled me after we reconciled the 1st time. It was now looking back a purely physical relationship for him and that’s fine for some as long as both people are honest and there is no pretense that something greater is in the works. However, with him, he led me on by a promising marriage, etc.

    Very angry at myself, but trying to be kind and remember at least I can see clearly now. I’ve learned so much. He was my first serious long term relationship. I’m more mature than him, he realised finally he was immature and what he did. I’m no longer going back to that.

    I love how you framed it, that it was no reflection on how I looked but the nitpicking was an outlet by the brain to justify why he couldn’t be with me. I just think if that’s the case you find yourself doing that, be kind enough to inform the other person. So many people are afraid the “truth” will hurt but a lie is worse. The first time he felt that I may have been less invested and walked away with less pain. He lied and used me for his own advantage.

    You know if I ever go back out there, I will never do this to someone. I will be straightforward. People do not realise their own confusion causes a mindfuck to someone else. I’ve been so scarred by his immaturity or reluctance to be forthright. I know he recognises it now, but it’s too late.

    That brings me onto; contact. He has respected my request for space right now, his family are lovely, I just don’t know what to do. Do I keep in contact with them all incl. him now that I’m 100% sure I want nothing more?

    I don’t think we can ever be friends and hang. However I can’t help caring about the idiot, so shall I maintain contact for the special holidays? Xmas, NY?

    His birthday is 1st Nov, I message everyone and anyone on their birthday. I made a vow after mine was once forgotten to never ignore a birthday I know of, it’s one special day when you can make someone’s day by a simple message. The least you can do as humans. Will he get the wrong idea?

    What do you think? Fors and against for contact with an ex?

    I look forward to catching up with you, are the tablets helping you? I hope our relationship situation is better. x


    @Shelbyville free to correspond this week?


    Hi @Shelbyville

    Thank you so much for replying. I have a huge headache today, I suspect it was from all the crying, can’t even focus on my work so I’m taking a day for myself, putting myself first for once.

    If I’m feeling something I have always expressed it, with him because he avoided being transparent or any conflict, I had to kind of swallow it, it ended up festering inside of me. It just proves real honest communication can relieve so many problems. It was cathartic to release it all.

    Tim was right that feelings do change and any meeting would throw up new ones. I will need to label these new emotions, dissect them, and confront them head on to fully heal. On the whole, meeting him was the best thing I could have done, it confirmed at least I had accepted we did not fit, I had just needed him, to be honest, and take real accountability for his actions. That can only be genuinely given in person when there is no phone to hide behind. I think this will heal some of the deep wounds and everyone deserves this in relationships so baggage can be left behind.

    You’re right he had no clue but I think the meeting enlightened him. He genuinely took responsibility. In the end, it appeared he wanted to make amends I don’t know if that’s guilt after hearing about my post-break upstate or if he really feels if we tried again it would be better.

    However, I’m done, if it was our first breakup I would give it a chance but too much has been said and done and I want to move on from this chapter in my life. I feel like he has a lot of maturing to do, we are roughly the same age but it’s true most men don’t learn or grow up until they reach their 30s. I hope he learns the lessons from this. During our relationship he was so confused that instead of having the balls to leave, he became a mindfuck and played with my emotions, led me on, leaving me confused and demoralised. He didn’t realise the power of loyalty and loving someone with an honest heart. I know I stayed, I didn’t have that self-worth anymore because he wore it down and I didn’t have the strength to leave for myself back then. I’m proud I mustered some strength yesterday to not hop back on the “merry” go round.

    Even now, I know I shouldn’t but the pain of being used troubles me, he mentioned attraction and nitpicking. The idea I saw beyond his flaws while he was tearing me apart in his head saddens me, how could I have read him so wrong?

    I know it’s something I need to work on to heal within myself and build my own self worth but I find myself asking what he meant by the attraction part? What do you think? What do people mean by attraction, you mentioned it with your friend did you mean physical or romantic as in love. How do you define attraction?

    Was he not physically attracted if so he still continued to enjoy all the perks, which makes me feel sick. I want sex with someone who loves me, I’ve always needed that emotional connection. If it was a loss of romantic attraction then why didn’t he say? We could have worked on it, I know you’ll probably be thinking she doesn’t need to consider this anymore, I’m seeking validation, but the way I work I have to dissect every feeling and reach a point of being at peace which is why I like to discuss.

    He also said something about because he loved me he had to go cold turkey to move on, if that’s normal then why does he want contact now?

    Also Shelby how are you? Did you have a good weekend, how are things with your bf? Discussing you alongside me helps, it makes me feel useful and balances the focus of thoughts inside my head too and not make me obsess. Thank you for replying x


    @Shelbyville I hope you can give me a view but Ahh where do I begin? It’s long……..

    I don’t know what I expected, but it wasn’t this for sure. I asked him to come to mine, I thought it would be the safest option. I’d have control and could ask him to leave without anyone publicly witnessing any drama if things got emotional. I’m sure my curtain-twitching neighbour spotted him though!

    He came on time, knocked on the apartment door using the secret knock we had for whenever he used to lock himself out which made me grin. I opened the door and there he was 204 days (yes I kept count) since he walked away through the very same door. He looked good and happened to be wearing a sweater I had brought him, I thought was he trying to impress me?

    He turned up with chocolates and a bottle of Hendrick’s, my favourite. Why?! I looked on stunned at the fact he brought something (he was notoriously bad at spontaneous gestures and remembering special dates) yet he remembered my favourite gin. All I could think was how to explain my sobriety he’d probably want some himself. Don’t judge me, I lied, at this point, I didn’t want to give him the satisfaction of knowing I had been drinking myself into oblivion as a result of the breakup, so I said thanks but I’m not drinking, it’s in aid of charity. I know, I should have spoken the truth or said something else and I feel bad but I will donate to ease my conscience, it is all I could think of on the spot!

    Then the moment I feared, hit me like a tonne of bricks. I started to feel the chemistry flood back as we joked around on the doorstep about how he had forgotten the cucumber for the gin and some naughty innuendos around that and whether I was going to invite him in.

    When we first met, we hit it off, there was an instant connection, as that night wore on I remember because he made me feel so at ease I had wanted to take it slow, not ruin it, but he couldn’t keep his hands off me, our chemistry had always been great. He was gentleman enough to wait until we became exclusive. Seeing him again after so long took me right back to that night, and today I still had that same feeling like we had known each other forever, never been away and this time I wanted to touch him all over.

    The fluttery feelings soon gave way when I reminded myself of the cold truth of how he left me feeling after things ended and brought me back to reality. I had cooked lunch, so I offered him some. We sat with the TV on and exchanged talk about our families and work. How he had found lockdown etc. It just felt so normal.

    Then as I went to put the dishes in the sink, he came up behind and pressed against me from behind when washing his hands, in honesty, I think it was just habitual and he quickly apologised and backed off. For a second, I just wanted him to stay in that position and hold me, bury his head into my shoulder like he used to. I’d missed it. Ugh! But something just made me snap – you’re just here to get laid aren’t you

    He said that’s not true or fair and that’s not why he came over and it was me who had suggested a non-public setting not him. I retorted, well it wasn’t for that! He said he cared about me. I said how can you? Then he just walked off sighed and clutched his head whilst he sat on the couch. He always had difficulty communicating his feelings transparently.

    I told him I had wanted answers. He chose to walk away after saying his piece, it was immature and for months there was radio silence causing questions to swirl in my head and his sudden interest in my health felt like a mere facade when throughout the relationship he had let me down when I needed support.

    There was a prolonged silence but his face was full of dismay. He then said maybe I should go. I said you’re not going anywhere. We may not be in a relationship so you have no obligation or responsibility to me anymore, I may mean nothing to you now but as a human, the very least you can do is give me a truthful response.

    He mumbled you don’t understand. I just felt like screaming have the fucking balls then, to speak your truth! I restrained myself and uttered then explain.

    He said his family had been devastated, his sister wanted me as a bridesmaid and had been in his ear. Everyone including his best mate had commented to make amends.

    I cut him off here as I got pissed and I asked him so he was here selfishly to fulfill his own needs and to look like a decent person in front of his family and friends, that was what prompted him rather than actual concern for me? He became exasperated at this point and said if I didn’t care would I even bother coming? He got up to leave.

    I got upset and said, typical stonewalling (I know you’re probably thinking I was being impatient but after showing him patience for so long, I wanted to be heard) there’s the door, walk away just like you always do without confronting the issue and any regard to the impact of your behaviour. I tried to hold my tears back but they just fell. He sighed and held my hands and said I don’t want to hurt you anymore. I said then give me the answers to help heal some of the pain you caused.

    I spewed out a dozen questions. Why he left the way he did? Was there someone else when we were together? Some stupid ones like am I unattractive? Etc

    He said he never cheated on me at all in the time we were together. He had been following the news and knowing we were heading into lockdown in March, the idea of being in quarantine together without any space from each other made him feel suffocated and trapped and he immediately knew something wasn’t right. He said knowing he couldn’t escape by going to the pub with his mates or gym for his space made him panic. So he decided to call time.

    He said he now saw that he took me for granted over the years, I always did so much for him. Everyone had told him he was lucky but something had made him question it all, something made him feel smothered (prob my neediness when I felt him being inattentive). He felt we didn’t match up and it caused friction and recognised he didn’t appreciate all I did, in the way I deserved. He said it made him feel resentful and angry when I would then question his lack of commitment and attention, and ask him to return what wasn’t coming naturally to him but he saw it differently now.

    He said he knew I was nothing but super supportive, kind, blah blah. He said whilst I was encouraging him to be better, he felt he had not done the same for me because he was questioning certain traits I had in his head and nitpicking.

    I pushed him to reveal what specific traits but he said you don’t understand that’s not the point, it did not matter. It’s the fact he was doing it. He didn’t answer if he meant physical or personality traits.

    He said he didn’t know at the time if he needed to experience more or whether he had some maturing to do. It was his only serious relationship and we were still young. Everyone around him he discussed it with said him walking away was something he would really regret.  (I felt pissed he discussed it with everyone so transparently except me!)

    He said maybe we met at the wrong time and if he had been in a different headspace back then he would have treated me better. But he knew he couldn’t do “that” to me anymore until he knew what he wanted because he saw me losing myself from the person I was when he first met me. I asked him what he meant by he couldn’t do “that” he just furrowed his brows like I’d asked him whats 4567890 x 4678. I pushed him to answer was I unattractive to him, he sternly said Sammy this is not like you, what’s wrong with you? (My self-esteem you shattered that’s what but even I found myself thinking why did I ask him this ?!) he then went on to say you’re beautiful, he was always initially attracted by whatever appealed to his sight, that all men are physical and wouldn’t date you if they are not physically attracted in the first place. I said I wasn’t concerned about other men. I wanted to know if he found me attractive. He paused and then said the ongoing issues had destroyed some of that attraction for him. I asked him in what way physically or what. I desperately wanted validation clearly to ask persistently? He didn’t answer kind of looked bemused.

    To be honest, this is more I got out of him than all the time we were together. He then said I do care about you and I realise I do love you. He said he always did that’s why he went cold turkey to move on. I don’t get it??

    I just cut him off at this point and said stop. All I heard was he had lost attraction and it hit a wound, he never once told me this when we were together, it something we could have worked on. I said he didn’t know what love was.

    I scoffed it wasn’t your heart it was your dick that supposedly loved me. You wanted the warm body etc and you knew I loved you with all my heart and wanted it to work so much that I had become incapable of walking away from you because of that love. You took advantage of that, you just manipulated my emotions, used me, and discarded me every time you were bored or got FOMO. If you loved me wholly you should have stepped up, I gave you ample time.

    I said I was so blinded by my love for him that I accepted all his flaws although he was far from perfect.  Meanwhile, I neglected to see he had been hen picking away in his mind about my flaws, making a catalogue of them whilst still taking advantage of my body, my emotional support, and whatever else he found useful.

    I said when I met him I was such a confident woman and by the end he was right he had worn me down. I said you led me on making me believe we had a future. Discussing kids, marriage, etc when all along you were hen picking in your head and fucking my head up too with your own confusion. You dehumanised me, invalidated my feelings, and only thought about how things affected you alone.

    I told him he should have left me a long time ago if he felt something wasn’t enough, I told him he dragged it out for too long with lies and breadcrumbs.

    I could have been with a man worthy of me who loved me completely but he was selfish and he had left scars so deep in my soul that I don’t think I’ll ever want a relationship. I said he didn’t have the emotional maturity to be in a real adult relationship. All he wanted was passion and desire, sparks. But love was an action, a choice.

    He never actually reflected on the consequences of his selfish behaviour on me. He only chose to walk away once he had completely drained me mentally. I told him I let him do it so I hurt myself too but at least I never inflicted hurt on him as he did to me. He only thought about himself and removed me so easily from his life like I never existed and I bet since has jumped into the next bed!

    At this point, rage engulfed me I had never wanted to reveal this to him but it poured out. I told him the days after he left and just went radio silent. I felt suicidal because I knew I had been a fool in love.  My best friend had to step in watch me around the clock for days whilst my family was unaware. I had become addicted to alcohol to numb those feelings because of the way he had made me feel about myself.

    So whilst he thought I would forgive and forget because I was so good to him and move on. I was actually suffering in silence, tortured by the thoughts.

    All he had to do was have had the decency to contact me and offer the truth, help me heal instead of being ravaged by the thoughts, once the initial dust had settled and given me proper closure, been man enough to take accountability for his actions. Not made me feel like it was all my fault. I would have done that for him if the situation was reversed. I hated how he showed such disrespect to me during our relationship. Did I deserve that?

    Instead, he thought good old Sammy with the ginormous heart and Christian spirit would be cool. He could just ignore addressing the implications of his actions and I would be forgiving, accept it and to a degree, I did forgive him but that didn’t diminish the pain. I told him he couldn’t heal me. I had to do that for myself. I had to look inwards and love myself but at least I could look him in the eye and say I was good to you. I loved you with an honest heart. I tried. I just wish you could have been honest enough to admit the truth sooner and saved us both so much pain.

    Then he just broke down. I’ve never seen him cry and that rage in me just halted. I didn’t know what to do. I felt like a bitch but at the same time, we both knew it was my truth. I couldn’t see him like that so I just automatically held him and told him it’s ok.

    I just couldn’t see him hurting even if I was myself. I told him everything had been festering inside of me for so long, numbed by alcohol and I had just needed him to hear it in person and I was sorry for exploding in the manner I had. I felt so awful for him but I was also kind of relieved to see him embracing his emotions and releasing them in a healthy manner for once. Not being afraid to be vulnerable and worry about how he looked.

    He continued to cry and my heart couldn’t take it, I felt responsible. He said he was so sorry and he had actually realised already he did me wrong, it was why he came and was dealing with the skeletons in his closet. He said the weight of it had become a tiring ordeal and he was so sad it took so much time to see the damage he did to me and grow from it. He said he knew it was all too late and if he could go back he would do it all so differently. For the first time in a long time, I felt he was accepting his culpability with sincerity.

    He said a lot of sweet personal things, told me he did love me in his own way, and cared. He was sorry he never matched the love I showed him, he was sorry for taking me for granted and I deserved so much better. I almost got a sense he had insecurities and didn’t voice them in our relationship. This was the most vulnerable he had ever been with me.

    After the tears dried up. we just held each other it was almost like the 4.5 years together flashed in front of me, I didn’t want to let go but I knew any longer my heart may betray me and we would end up with breakup sex. We had done it before, I wanted to believe it was because we loved each other that much when really it was just the chemistry we always had but overall the relationship was broken irreconcilably because we didn’t fit as we were.

    I broke the embrace and thanked him for coming and talking it through with me, allowing me to process my feelings and him accepting his responsibility for his actions in person. I told him it wasn’t all bad, I had learned so much from him about love and I would always love him, we just couldn’t fit and work the way we were back then. It was now time to fully heal. He looked sad and asked if we could remain in contact and that his family also wanted to keep ties. I told him I’d have to think about it but right now I needed space to get myself back on track.

    He laughed that the one time he thought to make a random sweet gesture and be thoughtful he only went and got me something so distasteful. He apologised and I told him it was OK he wasn’t to know, I appreciated that he remembered it was my favorite and maybe I could make use of it. He said no I’m taking it back, I joked I wouldn’t let him take the chocolates. He said he wanted me to be strong again, like the Sammy he first met and asked if there was anything else I needed and any other help with the alcohol, I told him I don’t think I’ll be needing it anymore. Today you freed me.

    He gave me a kiss on the forehead and said thank you for teaching me to never hide my emotions, who I am, and the truth is better said than avoided. Thank you for being a wonderful human and always continuing to love me despite what little I provided. He said will you truly forgive me? I told him I was no angel and I wasn’t going to sit here and act like I was a saint in our relationship; I knew I had flaws. I knew it must’ve been hard for him to deal with someone who needed more, the overthinking, the persistence, some of the neediness. I said no more, we had hurt each other enough, it was now water under the bridge. I said it was time to say goodbye and I never thought I’d ever ask him to take his leave.

    My heart and mind for the first time in a long time feel aligned. I realised my need to see him in person was more to be given full emotional closure.

    As I shut the door, I slumped to the ground and sobbed. I felt overwhelmed it was an intense day he came at 1 pm left at 11pmish, I haven’t eaten and need to sleep. Some things hurt to hear, it’s so much to take in, I have written what I can recall so far, and writing it out has helped but I feel like I don’t know how to explain it, I feel like a tsunami is about to hit but right now the emotions have quietened down, I have some peace.

    I don’t know what to make of it? I feel some things raised helped others have thrown up questions. I can’t tell another soul yet they would judge me and that’s not what I need right now 🙁

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