LittleGirlBigAppetite asks: It’s close to one whole year since I broke up with my boyfriend. After the breakup, I did everything possible to move on. Blocked him on social media, hung out with my friends a lot, concentrated on my studies and also did the things that you’d told me to do in your previous letter. It all went well for 5 months and I even forgave him for ruining our relationship, though my feelings for him were still there. So therefore I unblocked him. But he texted me back in April and we agreed to be friends. Slowly as days went by my feelings and hopes of getting back together got stronger. He too confessed that he still has feelings for me, though I find it hard to believe. As he stays in a city 2 hours away from me, I knew that meeting up wasn’t possible anytime soon due to our busy schedules (one of the reasons why we broke up). Plus I always have this nagging feeling that he might be seeing other girls. So to save myself from all the pain all over again, I told him that we should stop talking in August. Its October now, and I am still hurting. I can’t seem to stop thinking about him no matter what. There’s always this empty, hollow feeling inside me and I’m worried that I might go into depression. It has already started affecting my sleep. Is there anything I can do apart from the regular ‘how to move on from your ex activities’ that might help?
Hi LittleGirlBigAppetite –
I sure hope this guy appreciates how much you feel for him! Even if nothing ever happens between you two again, it’s pretty amazing to have someone care that much.
I’m very complimented that you took my previous letter so strongly. And I’m glad you did the things I suggested, which were mostly about how to deal with heading into a period of depression.
Well now that it’s been a while, and all this other stuff has happened, I think it’s time to move into another phase. Let’s get your life started again!
When you wrote me before, you talked about how this guy was the only one you’d ever felt comfortable with. So now, time has moved on, you’ve gotten stronger and survived the breakup… but he’s still the only one you’ve felt that way with.
Well if that’s the case, then I know just the cure for you. You need to find another guy!
Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying to accept just anyone. But I’m also saying that no one else is going to be exactly the same as your ex. There are other guys out there who can make you feel comfortable, or excited, or silly… and when you start having one of them in your life, your ex will feel – not less than he is now, or worse – he’ll just feel less necessary.
I hate to even talk this way, but if my human Handsome were to leave me or pass away, I’d be a wreck. And I know I’d never be able to feel the same about anyone as I do about him. But if I were lucky enough to move into another home, I’d develop a relationship with those people that would also be very deeply attached. They wouldn’t be the same as Handsome, but I’d likely learn to love them and care about them, and get excited about some of their qualities just the way I do about his today.
Similarly, most likely he’ll lose me someday. And when that happens, I know he’ll be a wreck! But I sure hope he manages to get another dog, and treat it with the love and care he has me. And when that happens, that dog won’t be the same as me (noooooooooo way!), but it’ll have its own great qualities, and its own headaches, and he’ll make room in his heart for that pup I know.
In just this way, LittleGirlBigAppetite, I want you to date. I want you to go back onto Tinder if you like, or whatever other way you have of meeting all the people you can. And let each one matter to you just a little – how cute this one is, how funny this one is, how sad this one is, how strong this one is. And when one starts to matter to you more than the others, that’s probably a sign that you’re ready to try a relationship again.
Now if you’re really starting to fall into a depression, then I’d say to go back to my earlier letter and try those methods out again, to keep yourself above it. But my bigger advice, and my bigger wish, is that you get your life started anew. Date, dance, laugh… and let your heart live again. I know you can.
All my best,