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"Dear John/Jill" letter...Would you respond? 2bstrong
January 31, 2006
10:17 am
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2bstrong
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I know you HATE this but here goes. I had this written last Thursday but didn't have the guts to send it. Now I've thought about it and need to tell you a few things. Written words will come out much more clearly. Just to
let you know, I am alone for now and have been for a while (in case you were wondering). I am enjoying it in a weird way and enjoying my space. Now don't get mad or hurt or any of that stuff (I think we have had enough
disappointments already), but, while I have thoroughly enjoyed our times together, I don't miss it when we are apart. This has been bugging me for quite some time that I don't miss it--I think this speaks volumes about my
feelings about US. I don't know what else to say about that and I feel really bad about that, but I know there is nothing I can do about it. I'm sorry. I think we have PHYSICAL CHEMSITRY but I am not feeling the
EMOTIONAL CHEMISTRY. I thought one just had to have "chemistry". I didn't realize it until I really thought about it that there was a difference, but I guess there is at least in my case. Why is this all so complicated!?!?!?
Anyway, for real and for good, this time, 2bstrong, I'm signing off and need to move on. You don't deserve to be kept on someone's "hold" at all. I wish you all of the best as I think you are a most excellent person. I hope we both find someone that makes us "giddy" as I mentioned the first time we met. I think I have been "trying" to feel giddy this entire time, but it never happened.
I'm sorry again, 2bstrong. I don't know about you, but the limbo was killing me. If you want to respond, that would be great, but, if not, I understand.
Bye, 2b.
Doctor
---------------------------------------------
Would you reply to this? Have you ever received a break-up email? We dated for about six months...

January 31, 2006
10:18 am
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2bstrong
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By the way, the above post is cut and pasted from an email I received from him yesterday...sorry if there is any confusion...2b

January 31, 2006
10:26 am
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whidbey
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Wow. Actually, that was a pretty good break-up letter, in my opinion. I would have given anything to have had such closure with my ex; heck, ANY kind of closure.

It all depends on how you feel as to a reply. If you do want to reply, you might want to give yourself a day or so to assimilate your feelings and to be able to express yourself well.

I'm so sorry you're going through the breakup. 🙁 I know it must hurt. However, I've had breakups like this before, and they definitely don't have the long-lasting pain that I'm experiencing now with breakup with an NPD with NO closure, except what I have to do in my own mind.

January 31, 2006
10:28 am
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whidbey
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And, 2b, how are you feeling about it all? Tell us what is going through your mind right now...

January 31, 2006
10:46 am
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2bstrong
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Thanks for the response, Whid. I feel very sad, because we had just decided to date casually, and had a great time out last week. He even had called me the next day to say what an "awesome" time he had with me... a word he used frequently throuhout our relationship.

As a good friend told me yesterday "His truths are his truths". I cannot make someone feel emotionally close to me...BUT, I feel that he did not allow me to get close emotionally. He kept me at arms length, and feared intimacy. He even told me many times that he was afraid. But I hung in there thinking that it would be different with me, than it had been with other relationships in his life. He told me about two months ago that there was no "escape hatch" with me...that in past relationships he had an escape hatch to get out of them...

I feel hurt, heartbroken, and confused. Especially by the "I thoroughly enjoyed the times we spent together" part.

Hope you are ok, whid. love and hugs, 2b

January 31, 2006
10:51 am
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revelation
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2b, hi how you doing? Well, I know this may not be any consolation, but at the very least, he has explained his feelings quite well in the letter, at least he hasn't just pulled the rug from under you as has happened to both of us in the past as we know. I'd respond with a simple "thanks for being so honest" sounds to me like he really is afraid of commitment, he's just not ready for it yet, hard as that is on you, at least you know where you stand. Yuck...I hate break-ups. You've been through so much 2b, but at least this time there is no confusion.

January 31, 2006
10:57 am
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revelation
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May I just correct myself

I should have said "If I were not as codependent as I am....I'd respond with a simple "thanks for being so honest"

In reality, I would probably respond with a "well, ok, but maybe you just need some time...I can help you with your issues, I love you so much...I know you are the one for me...please don't leave me" But hey...thats why I'm here!!!

January 31, 2006
10:57 am
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whidbey
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Well, he may very well have enjoyed those times, but... if it was happening all the way for him, it just wasn't. Your friend is correct. We can't make them feel what they don't feel. He was probably trying to convince himself more than you with those comments, which is probably, and rightly, where your confusion comes in. However, to give him his due, he did come pretty clean at the end here. Nothing to do but accept it, as much as it hurts.

Today? I dunno... The shock and anger of yesterday (though why I should have been shocked at ex's actions, I have no idea) has worn off a bit, and I'm definitely in a pretty sad mode. It's not the devastating sadness of last fall, but still, a sadness as this has MADE me have closure in my own mind, where I think perhaps there was that one teeeny tiny little spark that perhaps, perhaps... It's all about acceptance, finally, in my mind.

I've needed to remind myself about some things, however:

By the nature of his disorder, he will do this again and again and again.

I need to only feel sorry for the next victim.

He will continue the same behaviors with the next one as he did with me.

I pray that she has the strength to get out early before she gets totally trashed like all the women before her.

Finally, I need to go back to the "letting go" exercises.

I know it isn't going to take me long this time to get my equilibrium back, and that is a light to me in this very short tunnel.

Okay, sorry, didn't mean to make this about me. Must be some of those narcissistic traits coming out... lol

Keep posting about your feelings, if you need to, in order to process them.

Love and hugs back attcha...

W.

January 31, 2006
10:58 am
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I'm glad you decided to post your letter here 2b! I get worried when I don't hear from you much! Of course I hope that it is only because things are going well and you are deliriously happy, but part of me fears that you are trying to deal with things on your own. NOT that I don't think you are completely capable of dealing with your life without US... but I just know it helps me soooooo much to get feedback from other people on this site when I am struggling. Even when people are brutally honest and say things that you don't necessarily like (TURNABOUT!!!)... it helps me. I'm kidding Tra... you know I love ya!!

Anyway... 2b... Let's go back a ways. You said you were dating this man for 6 months. I recall you posting a few times about him and it doesn't seem that he ever completely "surrendered" to the relationship. I only remember him being conflicted, torn and tortured for much of the time. Is this true or was there a point where you felt like he was IN it for the long haul?

Does this seem to come out of left field or is it something that you expected?

TC

January 31, 2006
11:02 am
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2bstrong
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Hi revs...

Thank you for you thoughts--YOUR HONEST thoughts. So often we are torn between what we want to do, and what is the right thing to do.

I did call him already yesterday. He answered and I said "I got your e-mail, thank you for being so honest, and I appreciate the fact that you sent it".

That is probably enough--don't you think?

That being said, I look forward to hearing what everyone else has to say...2b

January 31, 2006
11:02 am
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REVELATION!!!! ROFL!!!!!! That was hysterical!!! I'd like to add one thing to your reply to the e-mail... after you say "Please don't leave me", you could add "or I will hold my breath until you come back!"

TC

January 31, 2006
11:16 am
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taj64
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I think this was a very good email from him to you with honest direct approach. You should be able to respect him and also yourself for handling it on this level which is very mature. I think you did a good job with your voicemail reply. Of course it is a little sad for you. At least you know where you stand and you have the truth. That counts for a lot. You will be ok.

January 31, 2006
11:27 am
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kathygy
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2bstrong,

where is your anger?

"I got your e-mail, thank you for being so honest, and I appreciate the fact that you sent it".

that sounds a little lame. Certainly you have some feelings about his letter and what he said. It sounds like you are taking this lying down.

Is there anything you need to say, to get off your chest.

It was very cowardly of him to send you an email rather than talk to you in person.

why are you looking forward to anything else he has to say given that you didn't say a word abotu what was going on with you about this.

I had a man do this to me but it was in person. I was furious and very hurt. We had had a very deep and emotionally timiate relationship.

I called him up and expressed my anger and said everything that was on my mind. I felt better afterwards, after I had said everything I needed to say and ask any questions I needed to ask.

I think you are latting this man off the hook very easily and being so damn polite about it. I would have a lot to say if I got such an email.

January 31, 2006
11:34 am
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turnabout
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TC - How'd you know I'd pop in here?? ;^)

Rev - you make me laugh. That codep response was great!!

2b - bully for him letting you off the hook. Keeping a person on the perpetual backburner is pure TORTURE!! Boo for him taking the wimpy way of doing it through e-mail. I mean, six months deserves better than an e-mail. Reminds me of Carry getting dumped with a Post-It note on Sex in the City. Did you notice how he tried to manipulate into being not quite so wimpy in the first couple of lines? LOL Nope sucker, it's still wimpy.

If you've talked to him and said what you said you said (you followed that, right?), then yeah, that's enough. The less you speak, the more it screams, "That's fine, I don't need you anyway, Have a good life."

Six months and he officially breaks up over e-mail! I swear.

January 31, 2006
11:41 am
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kathygy
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I wouldn't give any thought to what he thinks. I would not stop myself based on how it looks to him. The hell with how it looks to him!

If you have anything you need to say that will help you to say it then go ahead and say it. Give your needs and feelings priority. Don't hold back just in attempt to create an impression.

If you feel angry that he sent an email rather than person to person tell him. The way it is now it seems that he gets aways with saying anything to you without you standing up for yourself.

January 31, 2006
11:44 am
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turnabout
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But the question is would it be productive?

January 31, 2006
11:49 am
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kathygy
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When I did this it was extremely productive for me emotionally. I had so much to say and I needed to say it. I felt much better afterward and it made it easier for me to accept and let go. I did this for ME not to get any reaction from him.

January 31, 2006
11:54 am
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turnabout
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Was it productive b/c you communicated or b/c you got the satisfaction of telling someone off?

January 31, 2006
11:55 am
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turnabout
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'Cause the latter is just a power trip, and not actually productive towards improving emotional health.

January 31, 2006
12:17 pm
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kc30
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Hey 2b

Don't know that I would bother responding at all....you say you already called him. I don't see what point there is in any further contact?

If there is something you need to say for closure, and it will bring you peace, then go for it! If not...I would suggest simply letting go and getting back to the important business of living your own FANTASTIC

January 31, 2006
12:19 pm
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kc30
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...OOPS! make that Fantastic life!!! Keep the focus on you you you and what makes you you you happy! This "should I or shouldn't I" is a distraction from what matters....2b's love affair with 2b- you're an awesome gal...don't forget it!!!

lots of love
kc

January 31, 2006
12:19 pm
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gingerleigh
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If you tend to move in the same social circles, it's always safest to take the high road in responses like this. It might feel good for a few moments to spew venomn back at the one who hurt us, but people have a way of talking... "Oh yeah, that Ginger, she seems real level-headed, but man, Johnnie over there dated her, and he said that during their breakup she was a total psycho-nutjob. You should have heard about the email she sent back to him... I'd stay away from her if I were you..."

But that's just what is important to me. My reputation is extremely important to me, as I do care what others think, since my social circles tend to also involve my professional circles (not dating, but in friendships). I don't think that caring what others think makes me codependent or any other sort of dysfunctional behavioral label. I think it means I'm practical, and don't carry any ideals with me about my work demonstrating for itself my worth. In many cases, perception truly is reality.

Just my two cents.

January 31, 2006
12:57 pm
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Notsure
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Hello 2B,

Rather than sending an emailwhich I think lacks class I think that he should have done so in person.

For personal closure (and so that he doesn't change his mind next week and say "did you get my email") I would probably say something to the effect of... "I got your note. Thank you for being honest with your feelings. I think however that given our time together that you could have better done this in person. No matter though. I wish you the best of luck. 2B"

Regards. Notsure

January 31, 2006
1:16 pm
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2bstrong
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Let me thank all of you and clarify something: I am extremely angry. I was angry as soon as I read it, and I wrote this response, but did not send it:

"Doctor--I'm just going to write, not think about this in advance--so this is from my gut...

Thanks for the note. I appreciate your honesty--as I said the very first time we talked, that was one of the things I found attractive about your
profile on match.

I absolutely understand what you mean about being alone/enjoying your space. To that end, I will say in any relationship I have, that would have to be a given--I love my independence, and value my alone time. I NEVER pressured
you to do things or to spend time together, so I really don't know what the point is of your "space" statement. I really don't care if you've spent time with other people, either. That tells me that this is not about me at all--it's about you.

Now I am going to be honest, Doctor. You are absolutely dead on about the two different kinds of chemistry. I feel that YOU WOULDN'T LET ME get emotionally close to develop emotional chemistry. Chemistry happens if both
people are willing to participate in making it. It seemed that you kept walls up at all times, was it fear? I felt that vibe from the beginning, and
you even alluded to it many times. To me, that kept the relationship from developing beyond superficiality. How do you think friends develop
chemistry? They spend time together, do t hings together, get to know each other and participate in each other's lives. They call each other to say hi, to wish each other Merry Christmas/Happy New Year, meet other friends and family. You controlled your feelings and the entire emotional chemistry of the relationship by disappearing or being unavailable when opportunities came up to deepen the relationship.

Even the physical aspect was very controlled, for whatever reason...the whole thing seemed very controlled by you. In my opinion, you can't miss
someone on a deeper level if there is no motional chemistry. Even with the
giddy thing--we are mature adults, Doctor. We all know that feeling giddy is a transitory feeling. Eventually, that wears off too, and you are back to the business of every day life--in all relationships. Again, instead of trying to let things happen, it was all about control and what you DIDN'T HAVE--and I'll say it again, IT WAS REAL, and it scared the crap out of you.

You are the classic-commitmentphobic. Grasping at whatever you could to say this wouldn't work. I'm a very intuitive and perceptive person, Doctor, this is all smoke and mirrors bull-$**t because you are afraid!

And, yes--this DOES hurt, and it makes me angry! You may not feel that it was mean spirited, but this is! Don't tell me not to get mad or hurt--I can feel whatever I want to feel. I'm not a robot like you! I think it is very cold and insensitive that you didn't have the courage and the respect to tell me this in person."

I am laboring over whether or not to send it. My dilemma is that I agree that this man does not deserve anymore from me...sending it might give the impression that I care. Silence does speak volumes, that's why I am here.

By the way, his goodbye letter came one week after a letter that he had been doing some soul-searching and wanted to share his thoughts and feelings with me...was I available? Of course I was, and then ELEVEN DAYS LATER, I get the goodbye e-mail.

January 31, 2006
1:20 pm
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2bstrong
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Also, Kathy--happy birthday to you by the way--you ARE a gift...

I didn't say I was looking forward to what he has to say--I was looking forward to all of the things my cyberfriends have to say.--2b

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