Ask a Guy: He Broke Up With Me and Hates That I’m Moving On post image

Ask a Guy: He Broke Up With Me and Hates That I’m Moving On


When my ex-boyfriend and I broke up after being together for almost a year, he said he was too young to be tied down to just one girl and he had too many things on his plate (his school, his band, etc). He said I was his best friend and he would hate to lose me completely.

However, when I make comments on Facebook or Twitter about me spending time with other guys, he gets really angry and says I’m rubbing it in his face, trying to make him jealous.

At first I thought he just didn’t want me to move on from him, but then he called me and told me he missed being in a relationship with me and that he missed me since I hadn’t talked to him for three days).

We’re broken up still and I’m trying to move on but I can’t unless I know for sure. It’s over, but is it really over?

I am going to answer this question a little differently than the other AAGs and rather than giving my thoughts as an objective outside observer, I’m going to tell a story that may shed a lot of light on where this guy is coming from.

When Sabrina and I started A New Mode, she and I were working on it during every free hour we had. Everything you see on the site right now: the articles, the graphics, the advertisements, the links, the giveaways, the newsletter, etc. None of that existed until we made it exist. And on top of that, we both had full time jobs.

At that time, I got into a relationship with a girl I cared very much for. I couldn’t help myself, despite the fact that my entire life consisted of working and focusing on my projects. In general, when us guys really like a girl, we  sometimes kid ourselves into thinking that being with that girl or being in a relationship will make life easier.

After all, we can save ourselves from all that time of running around meeting women, going on dates, etc. Having something stable would mean that whole side of life is taken care of, so that’s good right? Wrong.

The fact is, being in a relationship made me feel guilty. I would work a 9 hour work day, come home and then work on A New Mode until midnight. Then I would go to my girl’s place and pass out immediately.

I started to feel bad about what our relationship was like. I was basically just an exhausted body to sleep next to. I had no energy to devote to the relationship and I had no mental/emotional room to worry about it. I really liked the girl though and I hoped that things would just work out. Truth is, I really did not have room for the relationship to be what I felt it needed to be.

It would be one thing if it was a really loose, casual relationship. But this was a boyfriend/girlfriend situation I had established and I regretted leading us down that path. It would have been better for her and for me if I had either kept things casual or broke it off.

So after about 8 months of me being pretty absent as a boyfriend, she left. It was hard for me to accept, but it was absolutely the right move on her part. She didn’t want to be in a relationship with a ghost.

The good news is that after a month or two, we were able to get into the groove of being friends. I wanted her in my life and I wanted her to be happy. She eventually started dating a new guy and I was fine with it.

Then she started plastering pictures of her and her new boyfriend everywhere on Facebook and to be perfectly honest it bothered me a bit, but I accepted it.

When we hung out, she would occasionally allude to seeing someone, but overall it wasn’t a topic of discussion and I was happy with that. I didn’t talk about my relationships either – I didn’t need to talk to my ex-girlfriend about other girls.

Over the course of time, she started alluding to different things about her boyfriend or her relationship. I had mixed feelings about it. On the one hand, I wanted her to be happy. But on the other, I’m her ex-boyfriend – I didn’t want to hear about new boyfriends, just as I wouldn’t talk about new girlfriends. No reason to push buttons.

There came a point, though, where the way she was bringing up stuff about her current relationship became obnoxious. It was gradual and for a while, I ignored her comments and the things she would slip into conversation. But over time, she kept subtly egging me on until finally it started to really annoy me.

Not out of jealousy. Not out of wanting her back.

My annoyance was with the fact I could clearly see she was trying to push my buttons. When I saw beyond a shadow of a doubt that she was trying to rattle me, I had to cut her off.

It hurt and I miss her being in my life, but I can’t have someone trying to make my life harder to deal with. Like your ex-boyfriend said in your situation, “I have too much on my plate.”

So what’s the point of my story?

The point of my story is that some of what she was doing was just her sharing her life naturally, but on some level some of it was to get a reaction from me.

In the case of some of my exes, I could care less about what they’re doing. Want to marry a guy? Go for it. Want to sleep with an entire football team? Be my guest. Want to hook up with my best friend? He’s all yours!

So what’s the difference? For me it was that I overestimated the extent to which I had made peace with the relationship being over. A lot of the time as men we need to make firm decisions and hide our mixed emotions.

If we know a relationship needs to end, we can accept that and we’ll try our best to stay firm with the decision. But it doesn’t mean that we’ve made peace in our heart with the situation.

I would say objectively that the guy needs to work stuff out himself. If hearing about you moving on is making him upset, it would probably serve you best to cut each other off. At least, for a while. I can’t say whether or not on some level you want a reaction from him on Facebook or Twitter, but if that is the case, you should try to be more conscious of it.

Now call me narcissistic, but I believe that when ex-girlfriends post an entire portfolio of themselves with their new boyfriend there’s at least some tiny seed of a thought about their ex-boyfriend seeing it and being jealous. It’s not the primary reason for posting the pictures and comments, but making the ex-boyfriend jealous would be some bonus validation.

Same with comments about a new boyfriend. Or putting gifts, comments and love notes on display to see your ex-boyfriend’s reaction.

When you get down to it, I don’t blame my ex-girlfriend at all. She’s living her life – it’s reality. If she happens to bring up reality and I can’t deal with it, it’s my problem and not hers. It’s a hard pill to swallow, but it’s my issue and not hers.

It bums me out when I think about it, actually. I really loved the friendship I had with her, but it was going in a direction that wasn’t acceptable to me. Whether or not she was intentionally trying to push my buttons on some level, she was successful in getting me rattled after a while. It’s my responsibility to work out my own feelings and I felt I was doing us both a favor by cutting off the friendship.

If I can’t accept her life as it is, then I’m not really a friend. I’m an ex-boyfriend.

So in terms of how it relates to your situation: My feelings aren’t those of jealousy or  wanting to get back together with her. I knew being in a relationship was the wrong move for me at that time. And I know even if it were an option now, getting back into a relationship with her wouldn’t work now either.

I just wanted a friendship with her and I thought that I could fully accept her, no matter what she was doing. I wasn’t there. I guess I hadn’t made peace with everything yet. Women have an outstanding ability to flush out a guy’s weak points.

Bottom line here is: Maybe he would get back into a relationship with you, but it would be motivated entirely by his ego and him wanting to restore his sense of “possessing” you or having your validation. Even if you guys did get back together, he would need to get over that – it’s not a relationship if he’s with you because of his ego.

Moreover, once his ego is restored and no longer feels threatened, he’ll realize that all of the problems and issues that made him leave in the first place are still there. Then he’ll regret his decision to get back with you and it will likely be a long, hard road of disappointment and emotional ups-and-downs.

I would avoid getting back together, even if that option was back on the table. The fact that he has too much on his plate isn’t going to change, well not in the immediate future, anyway.  Things might be great at first, but the underlying reason why things ended will still be there.

People need to work out their personal issues before they can have a true relationship with another person, myself included again. And sometimes the best, most compassionate approach is to completely separate yourself from that person so that you can work your stuff out instead of dragging it out or pretending the issues aren’t there.

I realize this is a tricky situation and I wish you the best of luck with it.

Hope it helps,

eric charles

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Molly

My ex and I had a very unhealthy relationship. It only lasted 7 months luckily. He is an alcoholic. Extremely verbally and emotionally abusive in private. I kept trying to end things. . But he’d say something wonderful and I’d come back. Then he started distancing and I could tell he needed to be the one to end it..For the control I guess.. Although I cared for this guy (for some reason) I know it ending was for the best. I didn’t stay home to wallow. I went out on a date with someone new. And we’ve hit it off very well. My ex is now talking about me negatively towards common aquintances. And has been seen out with a girl at the same places we went to. I’m not sure what this all is. . He did the actually ending of our relationship (btw..He never wanted people to know that we were together while we were dating)… Is this an ego thing? I know with how bad it got that I am better off. . But the talking negatively about me bothers me. I don’t say anything in response just play it off (trying to be the better person) like it doesn’t bug me. We are both well known in town. I’m guessing he’s heard that I’m seeing someone else. . Is this behavior from him like a retaliation? I’d love your thoughts. Thank you

Reply April 16, 2014, 5:20 pm

Ashley

My ex and I only dated for about 3 months. Before me, he was, for lack of a better term, the biggest man ho in town. We’re talking in the hundreds. I didn’t want to get involved with him. But of course I fell prey to his smooth talk. He hadn’t really dated before me, and the fact that he wanted to date me made me think I was different.

Long story short, he cheats on me, and then tells me about it a week later. I was blindsided. He had always been more into the relationship than me. I.e always saying how much he liked me (we never got to the love you phase), eagerly introducing me as his girlfriend when we went out, etc… I was on guard from the beginning. This was my first serious relationship post high school and I didn’t want to get hurt. But slowly, he made his way in, so when he told me he’d cheated, I was crushed. I was actually willing to forgive him (pathetic I know) but he said, “I want to be friends so I don’t hurt you again.” I didn’t want to be friends and told him so, but he insisted that we should stay friends.

I began talking to his friend (who I had been talking to before I started dating my now ex). He lives in another town for college and about 2-3 weeks after my ex had dumped me, he came home for spring break. We hooked up several times. I’m not proud of it. It was a rebound and my effort to get over everything. My ex shouldn’t have cared. After all, he was all over a girl 4 days after he’d dumped me, flaunting her past me at the bar one night. He was pursuing her just like he did me.

But he did care. Somehow he found out and sent me the meanest text calling me a slut and to have fun “having intercourse with his friends.” (He used a less polite term) he deleted me off all social media as well. I deleted his number.

I know it looks bad. But I don’t typically do things like this. I’ve slept with 3 people my entire life, and only one since we broke up. Through the grapevine, I’ve heard of his conquests since me. So it’s slightly hypocritical of him to call me names.

I know I’m over analyzing this, but my dilemma stems from the fact that if anyone should be angry, it’s me. He cheated on me. He dumped me. I didn’t slap him or call him names. Just walked away. And now, when were no longer together, he feels that he has the right to be angry? I’m not his. It’s like saying you don’t want the cupcake, but getting mad when someone else eats it. I realize he’s probably upset mostly because it was his friend. But I didn’t do it to spite him. In fact, I didn’t think he’d Eve find out. I certainly wouldn’t tell him. I was just trying to get over him and went back to the guy is been talking to before.

I hate having people mad at me, but there doesn’t seem to be a way to fix this. (Don’t worry, I haven’t tried to text or call him. I know it wouldn’t do any good.)

Any advice?

Reply March 26, 2014, 11:16 am

SAD

my ex dumped me and he got married….but now he is calling me and upset i moved on i still love him does he still care for me please help me…..if he was so happy in his marriage why would he care what the hell i was doing…

Reply September 18, 2012, 10:44 am

Eric Charles

That’s a really tough spot.
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You love this guy and he marries someone else… but is still upset about you moving on and comes back into your life to tell you that?
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That’s pretty selfish and inconsiderate. Not just to you, but to his wife too… I have to suspect that in your relationship with him, you would give and give and he would take and take… but you never felt like you quite had him… you felt like you were always chasing him and never got the relationship you wanted.
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So now you’ve tried to move on and heal your heart and then he comes back to you for the ego boost that he’s sure you’ll give him. And once you do… and he feels OK about himself… he’ll leave again.
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When you say you love him, I believe you. I also believe that when he left… or even during your relationship… you felt that you lost a part of yourself and the only way you’ll get it back is by winning his love.
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It’s an illusion. You didn’t lose any part of yourself… you just got emotionally sucked into trying to get validation from someone who saw that they could manipulate you by withholding that validation… like a carrot on a string.
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Granted, I’m making a lot of assumptions and this is all my opinion here, but… it certainly does seem to fit a personality pattern I’ve seen time and time again. Especially in cases where the woman is emotionally devastated for a long time…
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He’s married. He is not the key to getting that part of yourself back – you never lost anything. All you need to do is find fulfillment within yourself and stop looking to someone else to give it to you.
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Hope that helps.

Reply September 18, 2012, 8:35 pm

Charlotte

Your ex boyfriend is a dick.

Hold out for marriage from now on or believe me you’ll be prone to a life of misery and abuse (I don’t mean physical but that is a poss). Men promising you the world and getting your hopes up, and then buggering off when they get bored or can’t handle anything anymore.

The worst is when you do something they don’t like which you can easily stop, and you don’t know until it’s too late, because some cold hearted harsh bastard is too stubborn and refuses to trust you for no good reason.

Wait until you are delivered a man not a ‘boy’friend :P They are far better.

Any two people can be together and love eachother if they choose to and want to. It’s important to set aside a time every couple of weeks to bring things to the open that bother you, but without blaming or nagging, but also with no fear of reprisals, and just be completely open always. Give space when it’s neeeded etc.

Reply July 11, 2012, 5:25 pm

RM

I think what Eric posted makes absolute sense. Don’t jump to conclusion that your ex wants to get back to you, just because he’s annoyed you hang with other boys – it brings unwanted comparison, and although you are no longer together, it triggers memories and pains.

On the other hand, I’d say many guys are too stubborn to admit their fault in a relationship. They only regret it after everything has gone south. But if they truly want you back, they’d act on it, with strong indication, rather than just complaining about how uncomfortable they feel. They’d want to WIN you back, not WHINE about their feelings.

If they are to proud to act? Well, that’s their problem, not yours… http://romancemath.blogspot.com/2011/08/heartbreak.html

Reply November 18, 2011, 11:33 am

Eric Charles

Yes, I agree with you.

Reply November 18, 2011, 4:27 pm

Mikey Garcia

Great post!

I totally agree with the facebook relationship status! its like some sort of hands of tag!

Some of my mates girlfriend get funny if they dont have relationship on there profile!

Reply January 24, 2011, 5:02 pm

Tara

Yes I totally agree Eric and Keely.

Also I’m so tired of guys going on about how they want a woman who isn’t needy and is independent etc, yet it is these women who get the guy in th end. Like in your case Keely, he chose a woman who needs facebook to clarify the significance of their relationship, him being with her alone was not good enough. In my opinion it is pathetic and sad.

I believe that I am a fairly confident and independent woman, yet in my experiences this has never been enough. I am so sick to death of losing to the girl who writes on his facebook ‘wall’ when he doesn’t reply to a text msg or when he has’t changed his relationship status.

Guys don’t want someone independent and confident. This is far too intimidating for them. I sometimes feel that it is all a front. What they really want is a girl who is insecure and needy. A girl who writes ridiculous garbage all over his wall. It strokes his ego and he doesn’t ever have to worry about being the person who is more invested in the relationship. This way he can always walk out on top.

I could be wrong. But hey when I look around that’s all I see.

Reply January 4, 2011, 11:41 pm

Eric Charles

For some guys it’s because they don’t want it with you.
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For me it really is because I am so busy and this isn’t a time in my life where I can be pouring time into a relationship. I love my work and I spend every hour that I can pursuing my ultimate dreams and my ultimate success so that I can later have the type of relationship and life situation that I really want (when the work side of my life is handled.)
.
I agree with what you’re saying about the Facebook comment and I think there are probably a lot of cases that it’s true. It usually more motivated by fear though – the girl thinks that if she makes him “commit” on Facebook, it will make it that much harder for him to break up the relationship due to the social pressure and visibility of having the relationship official on Facebook.
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The other fear motivation is that other girls could be hitting on him through Facebook, so their insecure girl asks him to put up the relationship status to tell all potential girl-competition that he’s “spoken for”.

Reply December 6, 2010, 10:03 am

Keely

@Kimmie. I agree. If a guy liked the girl as much as he said he did then he would have made it work. Sometimes I wonder if statements from the man himself like “I’m too busy for a relationship” or (my personal fav) “I don’t want committment or a relationship at all” are nice ways of saying…..that I just don’t want those things with YOU.

In my case, I was told all of the above…and so I left it at that. A month ago he said he hadn’t moved on from me but that he still didn’t want ‘committment or a relationship’….by the end of the month he was well and truly in a relationship alright….with someone else. Its even facebook official.

However, having said that, someone once said to me that alot of the time it also has to do with convenience. Which girl is more convenient to him at the time? If he thinks you’re amazing and you live half an hr away…and there is another amazing girl who only lives 10 mins….he is going to pursue the one closer to him because its more convenient.

Back to the facebook comment:
Note: I am not a fan of utilising the relationship status options on facebook. A majority of the time I leave it blank or displaying something silly like “married to my best friend.” Personally I just don’t see the point. You’re going to break up one day…which means breaking up on facebook too. The fact that she wrote on his wall telling him to change his relationship status to “in a relationship” makes me sick to my stomach. To me it screams IM NEEDY AND CARE MORE ABOUT WHAT PEOPLE THINK ON FACEBOOK AND HOW I APPEAR TO EVERYONE HERE MORE THAN HOW MUCH YOU ACTUALLY LIKE ME. Any one can select “in a relatonship” but having that appear on your profile when you are in one doesnt give the relationship more meaning. The only time I think it is less of a problem is if you’re getting married etc but even then I personally still wouldn’t do it. Eric you should do an article about relationships on facebook :)

Reply December 5, 2010, 5:25 pm

kimmie

i have a question: you say in your post that you broke up with this girl because the timing was essentially wrong and you couldn’t be a bf she needed. But then you later say that even if you could you would not get back together with her because the same problems are there. What problems? In essence, it is compatibility and not timing then, am I correct? Can we infer that even if you were busy if you liked her more you would have made it work, you just didn’t like her enough?

Reply December 5, 2010, 5:31 am

Keely

Eric eric eric, you really are good at what you do. Did you know that? I have read all of your articles :) I have learnt a whole heap about myself that I was actually not that aware of. Reading it through someone else’s words really clarified much in my life, particularly my relationships and how at some points in time I really had sabotaged them on my own. I hope you have or will find an amaaaazing girlfriend. You deserve it afterall!

I have been seeing this guy recently (we will call him tom) for about a month. We had hooked up a few months earliar but I was still involved with someone else at the time (it was just casual) who I have recently cut ties with. I had always spoken to Tom over facebook and text. Around the time that I cut ties with the other guy Tom suggested we catch up (he knew nothing of the situation). So I agreed and we had an amazing time at a quiet cocktail bar, it was nice :) . Afterwards he asked “where this was going” (we were slightly intoxicated at the time) I laughed and suggested that we should just chill :)

A week/two weeks or so later he proceeded to call/txt me and drove to my house one day to visit and basically just hang out. We were really starting to connect until two weeks ago when he began acting distant. He would sometimes reply to my texts and other times he would simply ignore. I didn’t give him a reaction though.

A few days ago I was at a bar with friends. He came over towards us and we chatted for ages. Then he wandered off. An hour or so later I saw him kissing another girl. It hurt I will admit but I didn’t say anything. Afterwards he came up to me again to chat (oblivious to the fact that I had seen him kissing another woman) and I basically rolled my eyes in his face. At that point he realised I was annoyed. I went elsewhere and began chatting with some other friends. My very good friend decided she would have a one on one with him.

She asked what was going on between us. He said that he thought that I was such an amazing person and he admitted to having feelings for me. He went on to say that he would do anything for me and that he did not want to hurt me in any way. He also admitted to being upset had I done the same thing to him. My friend was confused at that point and said “well you could be her bf Tom.” He replied with saying that although he felt that we had a connection and he really likes me he feels that the timing is all wrong, as his life is very busy at the moment and that he also fears rejection (have no idea what is meant by ‘rejection’).

Anyway Eric my point is if he likes me and it hurts to see me with someone else then why don’t we just make it exclusive already? I really like him, however, I am still keeping my options open because I don’t want to end up in the same old trap of falling for someone who does not want what I want. What are your thoughts handsome xo

Reply September 30, 2010, 9:14 am

Charles Scott

very funny, very insightful, very articulate.

Reply September 30, 2010, 2:24 am

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