Instead of feeling bad about saying NO to them, start looking at it as saying YES to you, even if at its most basic, you're saying YES to knowing that you deserve better.

Recently a friend who is going through a breakup and trying to do No Contact (NC) vented her frustrations about how exhausting she is finding trying to fight off the urge to call, to send a text, to push for another discussion, to go around to his place and check if she’s been replaced and to fight the urge to push for reconciliation, especially as this relationship is more done than the gheri curl.

To be honest with you, if I was going out of my way to devote what sounds like every waking hour to either fighting the urge to reach out to being prepared for combat, I’d be exhausted too and I certainly wouldn’t have anything left to give in terms of self-nurturing or just being able to put one foot in front of the other and do my best to get on with my life.

My numerous initial attempts at NC were unsuccessful due to me fighting the war on self-esteem. I admit it – I often broke NC and ‘gave in’ simply because I was knackered. It felt like a relentless breakup because during my stint as the Other Woman, my whole life was consumed by him or my feelings about him and the situation. When I tried to end things (admittedly it was me having tantrums and hoping he’d spontaneously combust into being girlfriend free and minus his issues), I didn’t know what to do with myself.

  • If I was bored, my response was, “Maybe I should text / email / call / invite him around / pick an argument / flirt with him / threaten to move back to Ireland / torture myself with whether he’s happier with her / wonder why I’m not good enough…” and then top if off by either acting upon these thoughts or giving me a hard time about having them.
  • If I was stressed my response was, “Maybe I should text / email / call / invite him around / pick an argument / flirt with him / threaten to move back to Ireland / torture myself with whether he’s happier with her / wonder why I’m not good enough…” and lather, rinse, repeat.
  • If the feelings of rejection, abandonment and loss struck, I lathered, rinsed, repeated which admittedly ended up being self-rejection, abandoning myself, and accentuating the loss.
  • When my body was riddled with lumps and pain and I didn’t want to deal with those feelings , fears or even managing my own health, it was, yep, you guessed it, lathering, rinsing, repeating.

So of course a lot of the time what I was viewing as the same ‘urge’, was striking me and I was veering between trying to have the willpower to resist or assuming that this many urges must surely mean that I should give in. I thought it was some sort of message.

Remember that just because thoughts pop into your head, it doesn’t mean that it’s the Breakup Spirits trying to guide you back to your ex. “Go on. Text him/her and get yourself invited around for sex!” You broke up! It’s natural to think of your ex during the grieving process but you don’t have to chase every thought, whim and urge, and you certainly don’t have to remedy these thoughts with behaviour that you know only ends up hurting you further.

Of course, if I’d soothed feelings of boredom with something healthier, or faced or managed my stress, or sat with my feelings and stopped bashing me over the head about them, or actually payed some attention to my health, then I would not only have seen these ‘urges’ for what they were, but I might have started to feel better and gradually had the energy to increasingly take care of me instead of doing stuff that robbed me of my dignity. Thankfully I started soothing in a healthier manner. I also stopped looking for validation that ‘she’ wasn’t better than me and stopped chasing him for his ‘relationship debt’. Sometimes you’ve got to know when to wind your neck in and admit that it’s time to fold. I thought the sky would fall down in admitting a ‘mistake’ – avoiding admitting it was literally draining the life out of me.

When you initially break up with someone or decide to change a habit, you need a lot more willpower to resist the urge and to resist the temptation.

When you embark on No Contact, those first few weeks are basically about practicing the resistance to overcome temptation and learning to sit through your feelings. It’s also about finding alternative solutions to current or previous challenges that you’ve tended to look to your ex to ‘resolve’.

With plenty of repetition while at the same time supporting what you’re doing by making a commitment (validating your decision and making a resolution), eliminating and minimising opportunities for contact and almost distracting you with other aspects of your life, the days and then weeks start to add up where it starts to feel a bit easier, even though there are some days you will find harder than others.

Some people like to ‘dabble’ so rather than eliminate / minimise opportunities for temptation to be tested (e.g. defriending on Facebook), they think that they can put it right in front of them and not really make any changes and just try to stare down temptation. Sure some people can do this type of thing, but most people find it hard to give up chocolate when it’s sitting in their kitchen cupboard, so I’m not sure how one can think that they can cut contact but then field texts, emails, calls, and stuff popping up on Facebook!

Some days you’ll win, some days you’ll lose, but you stay the course and overall you start to feel you moving forward and feeling better, even though you’re still hurting.

I’ve helped enough people through NC to know that it’s pretty damn difficult to have any success at it if you go from being in a relationship where you made everything about them, to going through a breakup where you’re still making everything about them because you don’t know what to be or do with yourself outside of a relationship. If you opt out of a relationship NC or not, and you typically neglect you and are in fact heavily reliant on another party for your identity, you can be damn sure that you’ll be fighting off the urge to put your hand in the fire because you’re giving you less attention than what someone who isn’t around is giving you.

Instead of feeling bad about saying NO to them, start looking at it as saying YES to you, even if at its most basic, you’re saying YES to knowing that you deserve better.

Part of changing habits is incorporating self-support into it, even if that’s a new habit you have to learn as part of the process because anything else feels like torment and punishment. You will find it a hell of a lot easier to make change if a significant portion of your energy isn’t being used to resist and undermine you.

There is something else that is often forgotten: when you begin to face down challenges and put your self-esteem front and centre of what you’re doing, it increases your confidence but you will also find that due to validation that you have your own back, you end up also being left with more energy to take care of you and to move your life forward.

Your thoughts?

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328 Responses to Finding the Willpower To Stick With a Decision To Change When You Feel Exhausted From ‘Resisting’

  1. tiffrbug says:

    Thanks again for the timely post Nat! You are truly a blessing from God. I have FINALLY learned to let the feelings rip, give ’em to God, and let Him heal me! Avoidance of the uncomfortable feelings by reaching out just makes it worse, for sure! Only God can heal the wounds, and when I am healed, I am going to laugh at the fact that I EVER thought that was good enough for someone with such a beautiful and loving soul. Praying for much healing for those mending a broken heart. God will carry you through this storm. Thanks again Natalie! :)

  2. Chenall says:

    it’s seem like more and more everyday…I feel like there’s no hope…

    • MaryC says:

      Chenall I don’t know what your situation is but trust me there is always hope in putting yourself first.

    • Jennifer Tiffany says:


      There is hope. I promise. I just saw this brief post and it made my heart hurt for you because I have been there. If you are here (and you deserve to be) there is hope. Keep your chin up and know your value.It is great. I know it’s not easy but you are worth it. I am sorry you are hopeless and hurting.

    • can't afford you says:

      WOW sounds like me . I want be beat my own butt for allowing someone so much mind space ,who has stated that he wants me, but not willing to give up his wife or girlfriends

      • Lilia says:

        can´t afford you,
        Aw, really? Not willing to give up wife or girlfriends? I am more than willing to beat HIS butt for you!

  3. Healing One says:

    I have a couple of things I do when I want to be in touch with him. I run through the scenario in my head and I remember that I don’t have to act on it! I can THINK it or even write out a blank email and not send it and it brings me no harm. I also repeat my mantra,”I choose ME!”. It’s really amazing how those three little words bring me back to reality. He left me, but I don’t have to leave me. In fact, I need me more than ever now.

    • Lee says:

      Wow Healing One…as someone whose dealing with their Unavailable Man literally fleeing the country and leaving me to go to the other side of the world. The mantra “I choose ME!” and telling myself that he left me but I don’t have to leave me seems like very powerful positive thinking. I’m going to start reminding myself of those things on the hard days :) thank you for sharing your tip!

    • Misha says:

      I love that–“He left me, but I don’t have to leave me.” :)

    • Chloe says:

      Like it!

  4. finallygettingit69 says:

    I am constantly fighting the urge to break NC, my struggle is second guessing myself and resisting change. And there is some validation hunting going on, add on not wanting to be viewed as impatient or that I lack compassion for someone going through a hard time. Sitting in the uncomfortable is freaking exhausting. I want to be “right” and still want him to come back and undo what has happened.

    Intellectually I know that this ship wasn’t sailing for two reasons. 1). his profile “mysteriously” reappeared on a dating site after we declared we were exclusive and 2). he revealed through words & actions that he was totally NOT over his ex wife. So I did what I needed to do for me, which was to opt out. Storybook EU relationship, you would have thought I had hung the moon and then at the end it was all pffftttt and he was suddenly detached and unavailable and left the dirty work (ending it) up to me.

    Unfortunately saying yes to you and no to them still sucks!!! So many BR truths keep me on the path, however. Nat is absolutely right, no matter how much we want to BS ourselves, believe it, these men will carry on about how ready they are and “over their ex” they are…. they can be very convincing. But pay attention to the actions, not the words. The action is the proof in the pudding.

    Everyday I try to put the focus back on me, work on me and improving myself esteem but after years of seeking validation in poor relationships, this does not come naturally. But I come hell or high water, I will stay the course. I DO (we all do!) deserve better and will not allow myself to get back out into the dating pool until I know for certain I can stay true to me and run the other direction when another EUM comes my way.

    • natashya says:

      “Intellectually I know that this ship wasn’t sailing for two reasons. 1). his profile “mysteriously” reappeared on a dating site after we declared we were exclusive and 2). he revealed through words & actions that he was totally NOT over his ex wife.”

      sounds like we were dating the same guy. i gave mine the benefit of the doubt regarding the ex wife, but i should have listened to my intuition. there was only one red flag, and this was the one. i was foolishly hoping that our relationship could actually help him getting over her. when we split up, he actually said this as well. that he was 99% ready and by being with me, he would once and for all close that chapter.

      how nice! he should have dealt with that before he got involved. sadly enough, before we were officially ended, he was active online again. i really thought we had something good going, but looking back, he never had any intention of creating a future with me.

      these EUM types are the worst. they are not openly ACs but they move in passive aggressive ways. very damaging. glad you chose you.

      • Victorious says:

        Yes, it is so frustrating. They know damn well they are not fit for a relationship but they talk the talk, we believe them. They even walk the walk for a few months and we think we have hit the jackpot. Then it’s all “It’s not you, it’s me, You deserve better, I just don’t know what I want,” Boo effing Hoo! They walk away and do the same thing over and over again. We, and the women before us, and the women after us, are left sobbing and thinking “What the heck just happened here?” They should be branded as unfit for human relationship, right across their lying faces.

        • jewells says:

          Right on the money Victorious. That’s what mine said too, ‘you deserve better’ all the while crying because I made him tell his wife. I think one of my parting shots was ‘*sniff* your way out of this pile of shit’. It was my moment of clarity before finding BR and finding out how right I truly was…

        • natashya says:

          yep! i got the ‘it’s not you, it’s me’ and ‘you deserve better’ spiel. guess what… HE WAS RIGHT! it was him and not me. and hell yes, i do deserve better than that passive aggressive EU clownshit.

          never again.

          • Lucky_Charms says:

            Wow! It never ceases to amaze me how many of us our out there! After telling my daughter how much he loved me, then a year of “Future Faking”, I got, “I’m effed up in the head, I don’t know what I want”. 11 weeks of NC. He made it easy not to want to contact him. He’s a POS. I’m just sorry I ever let him in my life. I had no idea men did this. But, I’ve wised up and it will never happen again, thanks to BR. I don’t know if/when I will ever date again. You better believe my hand will be on the FLUSH handle.

          • dancingqueen says:

            Oh god I wish that my epiphany had said that lol.

            I walked on water for about 4 months and then it was “YOU NEGLECT ME, YOU DON’T GIVE ME ENOUGHT ATTENTION, YOU…(add whatever crazy accusation here, that he was actually doing, not me)” I literally got the Mr Hyde all of a sudden and never got any closure talk either as he acted way too creepily to merit speaking to him again. I think the lesson here is they all have a short range of scripts
            “She is crazy.”
            “Its not me, it is you.”
            “It is me, not you.”
            “I am not over my ex.”
            “I am over my ex but I can’t trust anyone ever again because xyz.”
            “You are white/black/hispanic/asian and I just happened to notice this after a few years.”
            “I am very religious and you are not and I just happened to notice this after a few years.”
            “I am not very religious and you are and I just happened to notice this after a few years.”

            feel free to add a few lol:)

            • natashya says:

              “i’m not ready”
              “i really like you, but i don’t love you”
              “i can’t give you what you need”
              “i can’t give you want you want”
              “i can’t give you what you deserve”
              “i’m damaged goods”
              “you’re better off without me”

            • yoghurt says:

              Ooo, here’s one from Vol XI, Chapter 36 of Ego-Bruising Experiences:

              “I’ve decided that I’m not attracted to you. Although I’d still quite like to sleep with you intermittently”.

              *Thumps head against desk repeatedly*

            • Lau_ra says:

              Mine didn’t say anything, just went silent and thats that, yet I’m pretty sure I’m the crazy lady now, if any of our mutual friends happen to ask why we are not together anymore:)

        • Bob72 says:

          LOL well put V :) … Just so you know though, women do this too 😉

          • jewells says:

            Omg, that’s funny, one of my statements when the wind shifted and the dawning of me happened was: “you know, why don’t you mail me the updated script so that I know what is going on, I am still on ‘anything is possible’, but you haven’t sent me the revision to ‘don’t go away angry, just go away'” At the time I refered to what was going on as such as he was an actor, so should understand that he was changing tacks and it is custom to give ALL the players the revision so they can all keep up. NOW I understand that he was blowing cold and moving the goalposts and managing me down, and that ultimately he was trying to contol the whole situation by drip feeding using what seems like scripted, but age old cliches for…control. Whatta Birk

        • Tracy says:

          Victorious, I am so with you. I suddenly remembered some things the guy who just disappeared on me said. In our first phone call he referred to his ex (of four YEARS) as the “love of my life”, and he once told me that his ex wife said he was an ‘awful husband’. She left him for another man who she will be marrying soon. He also told me his relationship before me was only a few months because he ‘got bored’ of her…WHY I didn’t realize this guy was a)not over his ex and b)going to commit the crime of getting ‘bored’ with me as well tells me that I am still giving these guys the benefit of the doubt. Oof. There should be a warning sign attached to these guys.

          • jewells says:

            Tracey, lol, my exMM said a few revealing things about previous relationships that should have sent up a big waving red flag for me too, but I chose to ignore, to my downfall. But looking back now: “usually women get sick of me after a while”, he also told me that he broke the orbital bone in one girlfriend’s face as a reaction to being tickled.

          • jewells says:

            Tracey, lol, my exMM said a few revealing things about previous relationships that should have sent up a big waving red flag for me too, but I chose to ignore, to my downfall. But looking back now: “usually women get sick of me after a while”, he also told me that he broke the orbital bone in one girlfriend’s face as a reaction to being tickled. Should have taken those on board and bailed immediately.

            • jewells says:

              Oh, then there was that little red flag of the fact that he was MARRIED, how could I have over looked that one… (sound of *palm smacking forehead*)

  5. getting over it says:

    this is so true for me.I finished with him almost 5 months ago yet i have always been the one that instigated contact.over xmas and the new year i didn’t contact him,felt like i was finally moving on and got a 2.40am text on Jan 10th sayin he missed me etc etc.i think he just wanted an ego stroke.stupid me,i rang him a week later and Begged for him to take me back!all he said was i love you…maybe we can date in the future.iam so ashamed of myself.NEVER will i act like this again,so this is why i have to go absolutely no contact with him.

    • Ownthetruth59 says:

      Getting over it…Dont beat yourself up. We all have been there. I did it many times and before doing it..I knew how stupid I would feel after, yet I did it anyway. Until I learned…” Does it hurt when you do that?” Dont do it then” Easier said then done, but it helps to remember how you feel after. Give yourself a break! We all fall off the cliff..tomorrow is always a new day! Cheers!

  6. finallygettingit69 says:

    @Healing One, I love what you wrote about “I need me more than ever now.” Amen! Self love is where it’s at.

  7. Cleo says:

    Right there with you tiffrbug … been thinking the same thing… I will LAUGH at myself for spilling this fine wine on a STONE. For a very long time. I seemed to intuitively know about NC as I invoked it during the final episode. Ignored the last two emails – they look like form letter now they’ve become so predictable. I knew about your site and your writings earlier this year but didn’t really delve into them… OH NO … those BreakUp Spirits were singing my song (I laughed out loud at that!). And of course I was invested in being the Exception to the Rule … But the most ringing thing you wrote above was about admitting to making a …
    m i s t a k e …. That’s been ringing in my ears this week … Well. It’s been an 11+ year ride. It wasn’t all downers … but the gamble hasn’t paid off… and now at age 50, I begin anew to figure out… what are my values? How basic is that, and I can’t answer it quickly. So when I get that “urge” … I remind myself, I have a lot of homework, me-work, to do … Get Busy.

    I am grateful for the words A Higher Power surely puts in your consciousness, Nat, and your willingness to share it all with us, fellow travelers.

  8. FollowURIntuition says:

    This is so timely. Nat you must be a great mind-reader. Today I took my mom to her doctor’s appt and I was feeling down because of a nightmare I just had about my ex and his new girlfriend.

    I caved in to NC recently i must admit. My ex contacted me with his usual blaming me emails (you broke up with me how is all of this my fault, why cant be friends). So I replied with a lengthy letter in which I highlighted his cheating and overlapping ways which at the end were the cherry on top to the 3 years of manipulation, control and emotional abuse. I listed all the ways in which I allowed him to control me and it felt soooo good to send that. Not because I needed him to realize it (he wont get it) but for me, so I can see what I have allowed and forgive ME.

    I know his emails are a continuous form of control and pathetic at that too. I dont regret the email but have realized that I have said all I needed to say and now its back on NC.

    I think the hardest part of NC are your own thoughts. Usually they are about ‘how did I miss that red flag?’when I am such a strong woman. Hmm maybe I wasnt so strong (then it goes into self-pity and I am trying through these methods below to realize all strong women make mistakes and I am no superwoman but I am healing and gonna be a better person) Sometimes its hard for me to file them as ‘lesson learned’ and move on but I try and try. Last night I was having another wrestling match in my head (cue in nightmare) where I actually missed (i just admitted this and threw up a little in my mouth) him but then I quickly changed my thoughts to WHO HE WAS with me (regardless of he is with her, he was an asshole to me) and I quickly thought of an incident that shows his control. I admittedly felt better. I am really trying to focus the healing on ME and take this as a blessing. I am uncovering so many things about myself, my strenghts weaknesses, how my mom and generally my culture has affected my view on relationships etc. And I am growing everyday!

    I wanted to share some methods that help me in my day to day.

    -Inspirational quotes posted around my bedroom, bathroom mirror etc.

    -whenever I think of a negative thought, I recognize the thought, I forgive myself, I say to myself what is my lesson here? and then I say how can I inspire myself with this lesson.

    -A list of things I would like to accomplish in the next month that make me happy (karaoke with friends, do my work, write poetry, find a new hobby, etc)

    -Journaling my anger, etc whenever I feel that I am wallowing in my thoughts for more than half an hour.

    -meditation altar (space I sit by and really try to clear my head) Being that I am also spiritual I pray to my ancestors a lot for guidance. I have an altar set up with their pictures and candles and I find that I get a lot of strength from them.

    -reading Baggagereclaim and realize that I am human, and for the first time in my life I am dealing with my pain and emotions and that I will come out of this a healthier stronger person

    -making a list of boundaries that I live by and trying to practice them in my day-to-day

    -listen to good music (currently listening to lauryn hill’s lost ones)

    -I have my up and downs but I know that NC and focusing on me will eventually lead to a me that has more self love (which I had none when my ex was able to bumrush me with his ‘i love yous’), healthy boundaries and is happy with me and does not need a man or relationship to fill that spot (something that culturally has been ingrained in me)

    -happy healing ladies!

  9. Dharma says:

    Thank you for this post. I’ve been at my lowest today after breaking NC 2 Sundays ago and AC has again faded into the background since Saturday.. Well kind of Monday… And it’s a pattern.. I should mention that AC had been complimenting me for months but said he wanted to take it slow since October. He said he had a crush on me for the longest. He bought me jewelry for christmas but something is off. He only TEXTS. He has only called me twice. I have told him I prefer regular calls but he only texts. He is a twice divorced dad with 2 kids. He asked me to lunch twice. Nothing is really happening and we only go out if I suggest. He pays for the movies. He always texts that he is thinking of me. We have been intimate and the sex is great but I felt it was always a booty call. I am well educated, independent and pretty but how have I sunk so low to this depth?

    He said he wanted us to get to know each other better this year and came back from vacation with a plan to hang out and do stuff. But things are not moving anywhere. I realized that he wasn’t asking me any questions to get to know me. He said he doesn’t talk much.

    I have never casually dated where one dates multiple people at the sane time and sleeps around and I do not expect one who is “with” me to do such.

    I asked him his views on monogamy and was please with the response.

    After spending 5 Jan and 7 Jan together he kind of faded and was short in his texts when I’d text him. I gave up after 12 Jan when I discovered he had a girl overnight at his place and he lied that we couldn’t hang out cause his son was sick. I didn’t call him out on his BS or lie. I just faded away.

    He texted on 16 Jan and Said he was thinking of me. I said I was busy with home and work and left it at that. He texted hi on 18 and 19 Jan and I texted hi back but that was it. then on 20 Jan he asked if I was upset and then I said not upset but I’d use a different word and I fell back into him. I asked if he was casually dating. I told him I don’t do the casual dating thing and he said he didn’t either. I know he lied.

    We went to the movies on 21 Jan and had coffee 22 Jan and spend Friday together.

    Again on Saturday night that female was over again. I didn’t here from him from Saturday night until He came to my office on Monday to return a board game. ????? He said I looked very beautiful. Why return it at my office??????

    Then he sends a text that night that he could have returned the game any evening or over the weekend but he just wanted an excuse to see me..

    Again I said nothing and haven’t contacted him since but I feel worthless.

    I am so hurt and feel pain. I cannot even focus or function. How do I pull myself together and obliterate him from my mind??? Why did I even let him in and why did I let him back in??? I really liked this guy and I am confused.

    What did I do wrong here. If he texts what do I do? Do I tell him I am not interested and we should only be friends?

    • Victorious says:

      Block him, then he can’t text you. Or just do not respond to his texts. You have all the power here but you seem to be acting as if this is all something that is “happening to you.” You contact him. You respond to his rather lame and minimal contact. You know it is just a booty call and he is sleeping with other women. This is a CHOICE you are making.
      You have to decide if this is how to wish to continue. I cannot see why he would want to stop, it’s all just fine and dandy for him, he gets to pick you up and put you down whenever he feels like it and doesn’t give a shit how you feel. Keep readings Nats posts on No contact and you can get through this. But only if you actually want to.

      • Dharma says:

        Thank you Victorious. I will get through this. I have picked myself off the floor and I will put my pieces back together. I should have been wiser: Lesson learned the hard way.

      • Ownthetruth59 says:

        I feel that you should also block him. You hold the strength right now to do that. It is not your job right now to make him feel better. Take care of yourself. I have gone through this also and today it is 6 months. I finally got the courage to say enough. It is hard at first. I would do everything including sitting on my hands..after a while you feel empowered.Take care of you! You can do it…

    • grace says:

      One reply.
      This doesn’t work for me. I don,t want to continue. All the best.
      Then ignore. And none of this friends nonsense.

      • Dharma says:

        Thanks for the reply grace. I love the words, “This doesn’t work for me.” Powerful ~

        • grace says:

          I,m afraid i didn,t mean it to be powerful, I just wanted it to be bland and not invite a response. If you feel able, I think it best just to ignore him and spare yourself from explaining anything.

        • dancingqueen says:

          Dharma, I second grace except that I would not even say all the best and I would say “This feels sleazy and unconnected due to your actions that I have found out. I regret dating you. This no longer works for me. Don’t contact me again.”

          Personally that is me. You have your own style. But in my opinion I would feel like he needed to know exactly what you know, about why it does not work for you. My opinion but I don’t think telling someone all about themselves is really two lines-it is repeatedly going off-and I am sorry but too many guys get away with that crap to not occasionally get called a bit sleazy. He is not just an ass, he is sleazy. Go NC at least so his sleaziness gets out of your life!

    • yoghurt says:

      Dharma – here’s what I think that you should do, I think that you need to get a firm grip on the FLUSH handle and push it down, hard. Fade out at speed, don’t contact him again and don’t reply to his contact, otherwise you’ll never shake the louse.

      There isn’t a nice interpretation to put on his behaviour, there isn’t an excuse that somehow makes his lying, cheating and rudeness okay and there isn’t a magic formula that’ll make him change.

      He lies, he cheats, he’s rude (ignoring people is rude)and he wants you hanging about and wasting your life just so that he never goes an evening without an option. This is not a nice man. He may be a witty, attractive, likeable and charming man, but he’s not good, he’s not honest and you don’t want to be spending the rest of 2013 feeling as though your life’s only worth living when he’s blowing hot.

      I’m sorry, because I know it really really sucks, but honestly it’s HIS choice to be this way – he would be the same no matter what you did or who you were.

      The only thing that you’ve done wrong is put up with it, and tbf, it isn’t like you’ve had all of the information to work with (I’m sure that he didn’t rock up and say “Hey! I tell lies! I want to see other women as well as you! And once I’ve sucked you in I can potentially mess with your head for months!”). But now you do, and you need to choose you. It’s making you miserable, and that’s enough reason.

      • Dharma says:

        Yoghurt, Thanks a million! You have no idea how your reply kept me from falling off the earth… I am perplexed at how I threw “me” away all these months…. I’ve had my cry and now my head is screwed on tightly. I’ve grabbed hold of the FLUSH handle and I’ve pushed it down hard. You are right! He is not a nice man, he is not honest and no I do not want to spend another second much less the rest of 2013 feeling as though my life’s only worth living when he’s blowing hot. I am worth something and I deserve better. The piece you referred me to was eye opening. I am not giving up on love but I will be giving it a break until I am wiser and have healed. I will forever remember this pickup and I am truly grateful.

        • yoghurt says:

          Glad it helped :)

          When I think about how I got sucked in, I realise – and I think it’s the same for you – that a lot of it had to do with my conditioning in Defence Strategies Against Bad Egg Men and Assclowns.

          There was a nugget of wisdom in these, of course, but for the main part they were a) based on the assumption that people are honest, they don’t lie through their teeth and you can tell when they do and b) passive. It’s the whole He’s Not That Into You mindset… don’t chase, back off if they retreat into their cave and you should be reet.

          Maybe this used to work (although maybe it didn’t) but somewhere along the way it seems to me that the rules have changed. These days it seems perfectly acceptable to tell stonking great lies through your teeth, make big embarrassing gestures that you don’t mean and behave in an undignified and faux-vulnerable manner (I mean, coming to your work to return a board-game? C’mon…) so long as it gets you a little coterie of adoring females and dial-a-lay when they feel like it.

          It’s actually disgusting behaviour, but in my case I made the assumption that someone wouldn’t chase (and be prepared to look like such a prat) unless they were well-intentioned and being honest. Sadly, no.

          (By-the-by, this is why Baggage Reclaim is such an immensely good thing… blows all of that right out of the water).

          It means that we’re back to the old-fashioned method of judging character, which effectively means looking at what someone DOES and IS and how much CARE they show, rather than their words, texts and silly gestures. And now you know what this man is – he’s someone who lies about their son being ill so that he can bed someone else. That’s scuzzy behaviour and he’s just scuzz.

          So don’t feel bad about it (I think everyone here has fallen into the same trap) but do learn from it. The good news is that you need never fall into the same trap again! :)

    • Sunyata says:

      One thing I have learned is to not ask “How could I have possibly fallen into a cesspool AGAIN!” and to just get out of the cesspool asap and sort everything else out later.

      Feeling confused over stuff like this is really like falling into a cesspool, and enjoying the warmth of it without processing ALL of the information that it is, indeed, a cesspool. Yes, it’s warm and thick and gooey and…it’s shit.

      • kookie says:

        haha, so true sunyata!

        there are more assholes and non-assholes on this earth. you are gonna meet more than a few, even post-BR knowledge. you should just learn to flush earlier. i havent dated a non-asshole yet but i do pat myself on the back that the time i spend in these fruitless endeavours keeps getting shorter and shorter and now i know how to look for signs to drop them even earlier. assclowns you flush early enough make for funny brunch conversations with your girlfriends but don’t hurt at all to lose. and think of it, every single assclown you have dated and are struggling to get over now could have been a hilarious over -drinks joke had you let them go early on.

        • jewells says:

          That is so true kookie, armed with insight and information, we can now flush these losers before they take a foothold, and yes, laugh about it with each other over drinks. Last laugh is ours from now on…

      • yoghurt says:

        Oh, what an absolutely fantastic analogy 😀

        If I’m ever in the same situation again I will just think ‘warm, thick and gooey’… can’t imagine anything working better.

    • Allison says:


      I’m sorry, but why are you continuing contact with this guy?

      He has lied, and is not putting any effort towards a relationship. You have also asked him to call, but he continues to text. This has no future!

      Please block this guy and go NC! He is a waste of time!

  10. Lacy says:

    Wow this was right on time.I had been doing no contact off and on for a yr now,really hoping things would change the first few times I did it,then I finally accepted it wouldn’t that I had to change.Each time of Nc he would call three times a day text twice come by even came to my job,I would eventually surrender, but things would always end up worse.Last week I felt so ready I joined a gym I been filling the void I thought I needed to fill with him my soul felt good.I wouldn’t answer calls or texts.One night at 12am he text me said he got Robbed so the next morn I told him sorry to hear that happened and I’m glade u okay,he continued to text all day and I wouldn’t respond.The next day he text and called all day saying why am I not talking to him for no reason. he called I answered we had sex sat and sun we were together.He left sun at 5pm he text me at 7pm and asked me if I would have sex with him and his friend.It felt like egg on my face and those days we spent together felt good and now I’m back having the urges to see him and be with him however he wants.I figure if I keep giving in I may as well stop the battle within myself and at the same time I know I’m delaying the inevitable.I have been dealing with him for 11yrs the last 2 I have been rough and looking back in the beginning I was just was satisfied with crumbs.I just feel addicted to him in a weird way.reading this today I plan my NC and pray i have enough will power to move on.

    • Allison says:


      He wants you to have sex with him and his friend? OMG!!!! What has to be enough for you? This is so disrespectful, and this is clearly showing you he doesn’t care and is a user.

      Please, go NC, and speak to a counselor, as you are not showing yourself any love or respect.

  11. Emerlydeyez says:

    Great post, great timing for me too! It’s been about 8 weeks and I no longer yearn for him, or care what he is doing. He is blocked every way possible, and he has tried to contact me, letters, in my parking lot, sneaking up on me from behind, just wanting to talk. I told him to go away. There is no other way to do it. I too, have kept a journal, while we were in a relationship, and I can re read the journal and the texts, as a reality check. When you are in a unhealthy situation it begins to feel normal. It’s not until you get some distance from it that you can see how sick it had become, and how abused you have become. So today I choose me. it’s ok to be selfish. I prefer the word self caring.

  12. Lacy says:

    I am so out of touch I plan to read this post over and over theses are some of the things I have put myself through got pregnant told him I didn’t want to keep it to see what he would say he told me to just think about it the next day he didn’t answer the phone and eventually change his num I know I too played a game I didn’t hear from him I was stressed and had a miscarriage.He reappeared 1 mth later said he really wanted me to have it and sorry that I lost the baby,so I went for it,he has borrowed money said he was broke couldn’t pay me back and my friends seen him at the casino gambling.I was hurt I had let him borrow my rent money and he promised to pay me back and it was the same week my brother died of cancer,He came back to my door begging me to talk to him when i looked thru my peep hole I seen him text his babys mother.After a week of him at the door text calls I let him back in.He Has borrowed my car twice and wouldn’t come back to take me to work,He has brung a guy to my house and told me to give him oral that it would turn him on and better our sex life together and I should stop being boring.He told me sun he shouldn’t have to pay me back because I’m his bitch what does he look like paying his bitch back.I don’t know who I am and if this is normal behavior ,or is this all I deserve from a man.He blows steamy hot then the blizzard comes .my emotions are up and down and when I do Nc he calls and text at the door and I have lasted NC for as long as 6mths straight one yr but I didn’t I fight the urges.Its like I have common sense but refuse to use it when it comes to him.This post is for me I love it,I am a work in progress and will continue to fight the urges.

    • yoghurt says:

      Hiya Lacy

      Is this normal behaviour?:

      ‘Borrowing’ money to gamble with and not paying it back – no, this is stealing.

      Bringing men to your house and trying to persuade/coerce you into performing sex acts on them – no, this is pimping and/or sexual assault, take your pick.

      Taking your car so that you can’t get to work – no, again, stealing.

      Texting/calling/staking out your door – no, this is stalking.

      I’m sorry, but this man actually sounds incredibly nasty, dangerous and as though he is openly proud of being able to manipulate and force you into things without actually giving a stuff about your wellfare. There is nothing in this that is about love, it’s all about control.

      I think that you need to do whatever you can to get AWAY from this man, like ESCAPE THE HELL AWAY. I would start logging everything he does to hassle you and have a word with the police about the situation, tbh.

      Well done for keeping NC, but stick to it! DON’T let him hypnotize you into letting him con you out of everything good that you have in your life. Because from the sounds of it, he will.

      Also lots of hugs, because it sounds awful :(

    • Allison says:


      This guy is even worse than I thought!

      He is an abusive loser. Get out!

    • Fifi says:

      Hi Lacy
      It sounds like you know he’s not good for you, but that the drama keeps sucking you back in. It’s hard to kick that addiction to drama, it can feel like something is happening in your life, when really, it isn’t.
      I moved countries to get away from it, but it evidently didn’t really deal with it, cos I got back with him 17 years later, briefly and disastrously.
      I think you have to get something real going in your life for you, and I’ve found meditation (free podcasts from meditation oasis) is leading me fairly effortlessly back to connecting with me. Also Pema Chodron, “when things fall apart” – they all take the focus of him and his drama and back to you.
      You don’t deserve his treatment, no one does

    • grace says:

      Ah normal.
      The boyfriend often pops round with groceries for me. When I wasn,t well he brought painkillers too. I was too ill to chat so he cleaned my kitchen. When he finished he was restless so started telling me terrible jokes. When I didn,t respond he cried out, “grace, I,m so sorry! I don,t know how you put up with me!” Bad jokes is about the level of mistreatment you should tolerate.
      Now, I used to think he was some kind of prince for treating me well. But, in fact, it is normal for men to want to do things for you and actually do it. They want to take you to the airport, carry your stuff, fix up your house (assuming they have that skill),support you when your family is sick, encourage you if you have to do something challenging, remember your birthday, make plans for Christmas and new year – and they don,t want anything in return. My counsellor said it to me years ago when he was trying to persuade me that I might have another relationship. He asked me if I wouldn’t be open to someone who would want to do things for me and give to me (he didn,t mean money, though my boyfriend likes to treat me). I just looked at him blankly.
      I had relationships similar to yours. It was after I committed to NC and changed my life that I met someone decent. Even if I hadn,t met him I would still be infinitely happier.
      Back to you, I guess it,s normal behaviour for the borderline criminally insane but there,s no way I would have that in my life. I wouldn’t even stop to ask myself why he does it or if it,s normal. I would be gone, gone, gone. That,s how much I,ve changed and so can you.
      NC, he,s an assclown.

  13. CoffeeCat says:

    This is so true. I am almost at 10 months NC. It was such a struggle the first few months. Look, my AC was the biggest loser, I was an idiot that fell for the b.s. hook, line, and sinker, and I knew this, but my emotional little girl inside of me, kept saying he’s the one! He kept up a barrage of emails/text the first 4 months or so, and even tho I blocked/deleted, I’d go back and try and find them, and rationalize a response. But two things kept me from doing it. My 48 hour rule…any text or email could be written but I had to wait 48 hours before sending it. If I changed anything, a new 48 hours started. The other thing, was really, I wanted to be over him so bad. I was first. Me. In the end, *I* was more important.

    So those of you struggling, I swear to the goddesses it gets easier. At 10 months NC now, sure I think of him, but after much self reflection, I can see the red flags, I can see what I was looking for inside of me that I thought he had. And I am getting to the point where I any more. Before I wished death/pain/revenge on him. I practice saying “I let you go with peace and compassion” every time he pops in my head, because I don’t want to be that horrible evil bitter person. I really think it helps since now I am cultivating a feeling of indifference.

    It’s hard, but you are worth it.

  14. Iamworthy says:

    Thank you for your very insightful posts. Your work is refreshingly honest time and time again. It works for me. Thank you and keep up the good work!

  15. gilmoregirl says:

    I try to remind myself that every time I have broken NC whilst I initially feel great talking to him again, I always, always, come away feeling disappointed. That never changes and its always my own fault for not sticking to NC. Your posts help me so much, I can’t begin to tell you how much they prop me up when I am feeling in despair. Thank you

    • Beth D says:

      Great post Natalie Timely for me too since my ex still is trying to break me down even after me refusing to respond to texts and calls for 3 months. I finally took a call and plainly stated I wanted nothing to do with him and to please move on and let me move on. I told him there was nothing good that I could see that would make me be friends with him. Of course he played the pity card but I hung up and went back to NC I pray every day that he leaves me alone for good. It is so hard to do NC when you thought you met your soulmate and he ended up being a nightmare. Harder yet when they are trying to break your door down and that is when you need every trick in the book to keep strong. I am taking my energy back that he has sucked up for so long and feeling better every day. I have my moments but I have written a journal of all the manipulations, lies, gaslighting etc that went on over a 10 yr period and it wipes out all the good instantly. I know the road to peace is near.

      • Emerldeyez says:

        Beth D, I am right there with you. The texts, the emails, are blocked and I dont’ even know if he is still trying that. BUT he has graduated, to the letters on the car, showing up at my place, the crocodile tears, the pity, the story I was in the hospital with something really serious. He has pulled out all the plugs. His saying I am the love of his life, I thought he was mine? Yes, it, he became the nightmare of my life. But I don’t care any more. Because every time I went back the good times got shorter and shorter before he would be him. Mean, name calling, blow hot and cold, the ex wife ( divorced 5 years) would show up or call or text. Ugh!! I too have my moments, when I’m tired, late at night, first thing in the morning. I know my vulnerable, lonely times. So I acknowledge it and let it go. I want better. I deserve better. And the only way I am going to get it is let him to and heal.

        • beth d says:

          Emerald Exact same scenario. Every time I went back the good times got shorter and shorter. The last time it was a year and he went right back and I was left reeling again and kicking myself for taking him back. I think they are so messed up they actually know we are idiots for taking them back and they also have a feeling of omnipotence because we have done it so many times. When we really make a decision to end it they really can’t or won’t believe it so it becomes about control. Part of me doesn’t even think he loves me anymore. I think at this point he just wants to win!!! I hold on to that thought and many others including that I am so better off without him and I finally found peace and a guy who truly appreciates me. I will never go back to that pain source and I do not want ANY kind of friendship with him so he can employ his post breakup mind phukery.

  16. High Heels Backwards says:

    This post was so timely for me. I am going through this right now. AC needs to “get his head on straight” after his ex-GF contacted him and “pushed his buttons.” Not half an hour ago I texted him that we needed to have NC until/unless he shapes up. We’ll see if this ever happens, and I’m not staying home in the meantime. Healing One, I love your mantra, and I’ll try to stick to it. It’s crazy to be going through this at age 46, recently divorced, but you live and learn. Thanks, Natalie, for all of your postings. Your wisdom is SO helpful to me and is spot on. All the best from Silver Spring, MD.

  17. Kathleen says:

    Great post Natalie,
    I have to say to tiffrbug I could not have said
    it better. I too believe Natalie is a blessing she is helping so many people, a truly God given gift she has.
    I went into NC 6 months ago and it was hard at first
    and as time went on it got easier thanks to God and Natalie Lue! you are right God does heal and as of this moment I feel at peace and thankful
    There are so many great blessing coming my way now;
    I got a raise at work YAY!!!
    I am moving into my new apartment (flat)in less then 30 days almost 1200 square feet
    and I get to share it all with my best friend love of my life, my heart, my daughter!!!
    He is living with his mom now
    paying out the hoohaa in child support (he was separated when we met, she kicked him out)
    according to his best friend he just can’t find a place due to lack of funds.
    Now I will say this I do forgive him for lying cheating future faking me making me believe he truly cared and I do hope his situation changes for
    the better as God permits for we reap what we sow
    this also applies to not loving yourself
    So be good to yourselves people you are and deserved to be loved!!!

    To tiffrbug read Psalm 139:1-16 this has also helped me

  18. Tracy says:

    I’ve been going through this for the last month, and you are so right…it’s exhausting. Even my dentist noticed the difference today when he said my teeth clenching (from stress) is leading to injured teeth and jaw damage. At first, when the guy I was with went from uber-hot to ice cold OVERNIGHT, I tried doing the understanding crap. An occasional e-mail, to which he WOULD respond, and respond in a friendly manner, but then would go cold again for days. Totally confusing.

    I have deleted every email, I even deleted them from the ‘deleted’ file. I got rid of every text, took him out of my phone contacts (but, damn, I did remember his phone number…but since he NEVER wanted to talk on the phone – a red flag I ignored – I wasn’t going to START calling him now).

    But I was finding that every day I was checking my email in hopes that he would contact me. I even wrote a ‘good-bye fer reelz’ email, once again (didn’t send it!). This was making me insane and last night I couldn’t sleep. So I FINALLY blocked him from email. So now I have no excuse to check my email and be sad/let down that he hasn’t made contact. But it also made me think: even if he DID get in touch, and it was the nicest email ever, begging me to take him back…Do I even want to be with someone who has treated me so coldly? I would be uneasy being around this person again. I don’t even want to be his friend (another fallacy I was trying to make myself believe in order to justify my time with him and the emotional investment I made).

    I think in this situation you have some hope that you’ll write ‘just the right’ email/text message and that the light will go on in their head and it will all be beautiful again. I think this only happens in movies, and I think way too many of us buy into popular dating ‘advice’ that suggests we ARE able to make someone love us again, and that’s why NC is so hard.

    • Victorious says:

      Tracy you are so close to the end of it. It sounds like you have done all the work and have really good self awareness so just hang in there. Your ex sounds very similar to mine and I went through the same process of wanting my investment to be justified. Thinking maybe we could be friends blah blah. He manipulated me and hurt me so badly I thought I would never recover. Now I am more than 3 months NC and although I still think of him every day, it doesn’t hurt like it did, and I feel so happy and optimistic for my future. Like you, I know that I could never trust him again. So it is over. I learned a lot from it and I move forward. So are you Tracy. It isn’t easy but it is so worth it.

    • jewells says:

      I doubt there was much love to begin with, they are incapable. What little love they can muster is embellished up the wazzoo in initial presentation to hook us in to get what they want, but the pretense requires too much work so the embellishment fades away once they’ve ‘got’ us. Then we’re left wondering ‘where’d he go?’ ‘what’d I do?’. Nothing honey, he was just playing make believe…

      • Beth D says:

        jewells me and a friend were just talking about that! They really aren’t capable of loving in any sort of healthy way. Both me and my friend talked about the fact that we both left our exes in the first few years of the relationship and held strong initially. Both of them came back strong. Literally kissed our butts for 5 years with gifts, vacations, and seemingly perfect behavior. Both went back to who they were after about 5 years. They just couldn’t keep it up because the only reason they were good was because they were operating on fear. That is why NC is for you! To break those bonds and cut the chord to an unhealthy situation., Even if they change to this person you want them to be it only makes it that much harder to get over them since they “dug deep” for you. My ex would always throw that time in my face about how he tried so hard blah blah but what does it matter? You ended up devastating me in the end and made it all that much harder to get over you cause now you are confused by the good times. Love the way you put it. He played make believe for 5 of the 10 years and I kept waiting for the make believe guy to come back! Not happening since he really doesn’t exist!

    • MSA says:


      This sounds like my now-best friend ex with emotions complicated thing. You’re not talking of a Canadian musician whose initials are AP, are you? lol The NO PHONE is a huge riddle for me up till now. The “cold for days” after “uber-hot”, “reply to emails in a friendly manner” are all common with the person I speak of. Yet, I’m not strong enough to call the whole thing off :( I keep reading BR daily like a maniac to get that W.I.L.L.P.O.W.E.R, but still my hand can’t reach the flush handle. I’m proud of you and all BR readers who are on this journey. It’s like a daily marathon that I can’t even get on the Start sign of it. But, I’m trying to find inspiration here

      • Tracy says:

        MSA – No Canadian, but Brooklynite! I went along with the phone thing because he has sole custody of his 7-year-old and I got that it’s hard to call sometimes. But I thought, after he bailed, that even when I had TWO little kids at home I could still manage to call my friends and family after they went to bed.

        The friendly emails, I think, are a way to keep you still involved in case they decide that the grass wasn’t greener and they want you as a fallback. But I found when I finally went ahead and blocked the emails, his favorite way to communicate, that I haven’t spent NEARLY as much time checking my email account to see if he ‘maybe’ changed his mind. And having that time to think makes me think more and more how there is NO WAY I want this guy back.

        You can do it! Block everything and try, every day, to think of one or two ways he disappointed you are made you feel ‘less than’.

        • MSA says:


          the one I speak of just “hates to talk on the phone”, no kids, no family of any sort even. I was just telling a friend yesterday that all the time him and I don’t talk, I kinda doubt him and his intentions. I sometimes feel paranoid that I even doubt he’s really sick when he tells me he is and it makes me feel guilty. The one moment he shows up and we talk, I’m like melted butter, all effing mushy. He has this charm and his way of making me feel like a princess WHEN HE’S HERE, which isn’t consistent. I’m in some kind of limbo. I don’t think I can do NC. Part of me still tells me he’s real and authentic and as soon as he’s done with therapy and deals with his issues, he’ll be back to his old sweet self. Then another voice inside my head replies harshly listing all the red flags he has, which I am completely aware of. It’s a daily struggle with myself. but knowing me and my history, once I am done with someone, there is no turning back EVER!! So, if/when I get there, I know I’m not turning back. I’m worried that only another heartache will take me there. I’ll keep reading BR posts and readers’ comments until I make it. Thank you and keep going strong

  19. Lisa says:

    This article couldn’t have come at a better time. I was so tired of resisting that I gave in Sunday and called him and spoke for 45 minutes. I called him because I felt hurt after I passed him in my car and he didn’t wave – although I was the one who initiated NC. It was crazy of me and I knew it. It set me back, got me missing him more because I thought he would start calling me again after my phone call and he didn’t. Which is totally crazy because I claim to not want the contact with him. I was reminded of my son in rehab when he told me that if he waited 15 minutes, the craving would pass. That’s when I realized this guy’s attention is an addiction, not love. All of the pain he caused me, all the painful incidents of me giving him money, sex, affection, a listening ear and heart, and him not taking me on as his girlfriend, hurts so much. But I was the one who let it happen. And even though I messed up with that phone call, I have been otherwise NC since October 29 and am proud of it. We work together and he lives 200 feet from me and it’s hard. But it would be harder to be with someone who treated me like he did.

    Living my life is also key to getting better. I always expected someone else to take care of me and I could live through him. That’s not fair to anyone. Going to the gym, going to meetups, making new friends that I care for and do things for – not just expect things and attention from – these are all new endeavors for me. Loving myself, acting in my best interest, and loving others all are key. It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life, but worth it. I’ve needed A.A. and lots of therapy. But I cannot go back to disrespecting myself like I did for five years with him. He is not the kind of person not to use me, so I have to be the one not to let myself be used.

    Thanks for another great one, Natalie.

    • Allie says:

      “His not the kind of person not to use me”

      That is such a true statement for a lot of Ac/EUM out there. Been there done that. Keep your head up and carry on NC.

  20. malaise says:

    It’s the maddening quest for closure that will do you in. What we’re really trying to do though is correct the past. But no matter how much we try to clean up the carnage in the wake of these relationshits, it will never change the fact that IT HAPPENED. You’ll never get all the answers, you won’t minimize the pain or erase the past by returning for crumbs and chasing validation. You won’t find validation in this person because he has ALREADY devalued you. PERIOD.

    • Beth D says:

      Malaise you are so right. I told off my ex so bad and have written him the good bye letters. I know every time I have gone back to him it only feels good briefly because the relationship is broken and nothing really changes. I tried so hard for closure. I can remember him saying to me…”I don’t know why you analyze these things but I don’t even know myself why I do what I do” You can’t get crazymakers to give you closure as bad as you want it and they will never validate you. You just need to take your energy back and know that this person does not have your best interests at heart.

      • malaise says:

        At some point we need to wake up to the fact that we are making ourselves miserable, and that whatever fleeting pleasure we get from these men is ultimately meaningless when compared to the amount of torment and bullshit we’re put through.

        Looking back, I can barely think of one genuinely happy moment I had with my ex, ie: a time where he didn’t do or say something horrendously disrespectful and make me feel like shit. I finally realized that what I was holding onto were not even crumbs but laughable attempts at consolation- “He complimented my body!”, “he didn’t kick me out after sex that one time and actually looked at me and was kind of affectionate, maybe he really cares about me!”

        • yoghurt says:

          Ha! I’ve done that too – “He came round to see me!” (at 4am and totally bladdered, like, but to see ME).

          Depressingly, for a long time, those were the ‘high points’ in my memory of a time that was, coincidentally enough, thoroughly miserable otherwise. Odd that…

  21. Portland oregon says:

    I just wanted to say thank you. I just found your site a few weeks ago and love your blogs. Hits home, and helps me through all of this:-)

  22. Jennifer Tiffany says:

    I am twenty eight. Ten years have passed since I graduated high school. There is a three year gap where I didn’t really accomplish much for myself. And here’s the kicker: 2.8 years spent with an unavailable alcoholic in a nothing short of torturous arrangement. Then a 2.5 month dalliance with yet another alcoholic. There you have it. My missing three years. These men will drain your soul, leave you near lifeless and not think twice about replacing you. Read Natalie’s book. Learn to spot them and Run! Run! Run! Run!!!!!

  23. Getting there says:

    Great post Natalie, you’ve been my oracle through my breakup with an EU man – I’m not sure if he’s habitually EU or temporarily due to being cheated on and dumped by his ex, but either way he was unable to be totally present with me. I pressed the exit button 4 months ago after 5 months with him, and although I know it was the right and only thing to do, I found it tough. I chose me, and I’m proud of myself for that, and I’m moving on pretty well, but lately I’ve been wondering if he’s found someone else and if so how he is with her. The mind does pointless things to us at times and I’m trying to not think about it. I’m committed to me, but still have these pesky thoughts about what’s going on with him. What the…? Oh well, perhaps when I meet someone new those thoughts will fade – I hope so. Thank you for this site, it’s a lifesaver!

  24. kay says:

    Thank you for your reminding me that there is someone else to love and take care of – me – and to appreciate the fact that I have self-esteem and am very precious.

  25. dancingqueen says:

    Well as someone who is not in the throes of heartbreak, yet who has not even a crush right now I have to say that…nc for most bad relationships is really key! I have two exes on Facebook with whom I had long term relationships with years ago; we wish each other the best and there is not even a twinge of pain. But dealing with someone who you broke up with recently ( for a reason) or who broke up with you and who made you feel “less than” so not a chance.

    I feel like I can comfort you all on here; my epiphany relationship hurt SOOOOO badly and yet now honestly he rarely crosses my mind and nc really changed me. I think the big takeaway that I got from it was that, even if something hurts right then a lot, it does not mean that it wont hardly hurt at all years or even just monthes later. I had a little blip about a month ago with an ex and I defriended him on FB and honestly it made me wonder, within days, why I had worried about it hurting; it really didn’t. Reality kicked in and I realized that he had always been kind of selfish, always had made me feel a bit bored…I was just afraid to admit that I had made a mistake and was keeping him in my life to not have to admit that…life is too short:)

  26. espresso says:

    For years in my marriage I talked myself out of my real feelings and tried to find nourishment in other things. My ex was passive and so all decisions, including my efforts to improve the marriage and my decision to end it were all made by me. In fact, when I think about it even though I often feel I was weak during those years, I actually carried a huge load, made MOST of the decisions (kids, family work, friends, activities), and I over-functioned a LOT. It makes me really exhausted to think about it and I have a lot of energy!

    Lately as I try to built a much more separate life I have been really horrified to realize that there is this huge voice that is saying “give up”, you can’t do this, your kids will hate you, nobody will accept what you really are, you can’t justify this etc. etc. There seems to be only me on a tiny little floating ice-berg which is saying, no you MUST keep going or you will actually just …drown. It actually IS a life and death decision in a way for me (emotionally anyway :-)I know my decision is where my true values and principles lie, where my SELF is, but it is really tough some days..when I have been married so long and I feel pretty much alone.

    It really does help to know that some days are better than others and that some days I might “lose” but other days I might “win” as long as I keep putting one foot in front of the other.

    • MSA says:


      I have always noticed similarities between our marriages. But not this time. My ex was the total opposite, him and his dad took all the decisions related to “our life”, which schools to send my kids to, what to paint my house and what kind of couch to get for the entrance and living rooms, even appliances. We spent almost all our vacations with the dad and I had to fight for one without him. I was fed false ideas that this is the perfect arrangement and I should be grateful for the food I eat and that the dad was just being “generous”. Nothing could be farther from the truth. My house decoration was nothing I had in mind, it had bad taste.. and actually it was the ex’s work and income. I felt like an outsider, like a child-bearing tool for them. I haven’t felt like myself until I decided to opt out of this sick thing they wanted to call a marriage. I have this analogy, it’s kinda sick but true; it’s like we had a 3some marriage except in bed lol and I wasn’t even considered, respected or treated as an independent human with different needs, tastes and opinions. I think they’re a family of narcs and i’m praying to God it’s not genetic. I hope my kids don’t grow up to be similar to those self-absorbed narc freaks. I try my best to teach them good ethics and principles, I teach them empathy, respect and cooperation. I am still building this life without him, applying to further my studies away from here, I am planning a better future for me and my children and yes, sometimes, it seems scary to be all on my own and responsible for 2 boys, but as long as I’m out of his narc controlling field, I’ll manage, even if I’ll have to study/work 24/7. I have this determination and I’ll get there.
      Being emotionally independent has already revived me and people tell me I kinda look happier at times. My acquaintances saw something during my marriage that I didn’t see; they saw my misery, my change, they saw someone else in my body, I wasn’t my authentic self. Now, I’m back and I feel I’m on the right track. I missed me and i’m finally getting me back :)

  27. meerkat says:

    Thank you Natalie, maybe you read my post yesterday? What makes it harder is that I relocated to another country 3 weeks after he told me he was with someone else. I was incredibly distressed before i left and had to see a counsellor. These feelings have continued and now I just feel depressed and spend my hours obsessing and working through the pain. He just wants me gone and I have broken NC a number of times. Yesterday I relapsed badly and when I called he got so angry he would not speak to me and I ended up talking to a wall of silence. I became whiny and and repetitive re the way he treated me, how cruel he was, how much I am suffering etc etc – if I want an apology or remorse I will never get it. He said that I walked out on him and that he should have cut off contact before. He said that I was the one who called him but then he was the one who was coming online and contacting me almost every night. He felt that when we stayed in touch that we could both act like adults. He was keeping me hanging on until he found someone else. It was just going around in circles and when I argued and cut in on him he stopped talking. When I said I was saying goodbye he said good and that he wants me to stop contacting him. I really flushed away what dignity I had left and basically wished him well and said goodbye. He did not wish me well and I had to ask him to say goodbye to me – all I got was bye. My two friends who are my main support are getting exasperated and tired of this ongoing drama. I know that it has unearthed a lot of my own issues that I need to address and I just want this loneliness and torment to end. I am tired, not eating much and feel drained.

    • jewells says:

      Meerkat; he’s an assclown for stringing you along when he had no intention of living up to the promise and potential that he created and implied. He’s unsympathetic to your pain, he doesn’t care unfortunately. Look up Nat’s posts on ‘validation seeking’, ‘rejection retraction’, ‘finding closure’ (you can’t get it from him), anything on NC… You have to seek acceptance from within yourself that this is indeed OVER, continuing to contact him is indeed prolonging your pain and your drama. Please, for your own sanity, your friends, stop contacting him, he will only continue to reject you and you will only keep refreshing the pain and keeping it current. STOP. Feel the pain in it’s entirety, stay in bed, sob violently into your pillow, wallow in the bath with bubbles and chamomile tea. Read the girl with the dragon tattoo. JUST DO NOT CALL HIM…

      • meerkat says:

        Thank you Jewells – you are quite correct. Being alone here does not help but I will get there.The person on the other end of the phone was not the person I knew – it was scary and I do not want to ever revisit that again. He has gone and I need to do the same…and realise that it was the best thing that could have happened for ME.

        • jewells says:

          It’s hard I know, to let go of the fantasy of what was and what was promised. But from experience, I know it will get better and you will eventually be grateful that he ‘passed’ on you. I also feel you about feeling alone, I’ve moved countries twice, and even though I’ve settled where I am for quite a while now, I still feel quite alone a lot of the time. I’m learning so much from this site that I know this year will be the best yet, as I am practicing what I am learning and I trust that everything will reveal itself as I go. Baby steps :)

  28. Chloe says:


    Well, I can’t believe I did this, but I woke up on New Years day in bed with my ex, that I thought was only my friend, only to relaize I had been fooling myself all along. For 6 months I was friends with him and I didn’t want more…until I found myslef in bed with him, then I realized I was in a relationships all along, I was tricking myself in to thinking it was friends only!!! And the sad thing is that the 6 months of friends was the best time, I really enjoyed it, so after we ended up in bed, I told him i was willing to go full speed ahead with him, only to have him tell me he wasn;t ready for a relationship becasue of work, his head was full (???) etc. This is what he did 2 years ago, only the he was seperated, but it felt like a lather, rinse scenerio and I had to laugh out loud that i got fooled again. So, I haven’t seen him since then, he keeps calling and emailing saying and he made it clear that he doesn’t want to lose me as a friend. Well, now that the cat is outta the bag, I can’t do friends anymore. I feel very sad about it, becasue I obviously do care about him, and miss his friendship too. I just kee p reminding myself that I deserve and want a committed relationship and he can’t offer it. Nor, does he know when he will be able to offer it. Part of me is tempted to go along and wait, but then I think, no, I’d be too resentful about it. So, I’m back at doing NC. Anyone else had a similar story about fooling themselves? Would love ti hear about it. Thanks

    • Lilia says:

      I think I´ve done the same. I´ve actually been thinking the last few days that my attachment to the EUM who used to be my best friend began much earlier than I thought, when we were “just friends”.

      Looking back, we went from “friends” to “close friends” when my marriage was in tatters (husband gone off with someone else but I didn´t know it at the time) and I was extremely lonely. EUM was the one who spent saturday nights chatting with me while my husband was away. He was a great support to me and I think he liked the whole schenario simply because I was married.

      Somehow I convinced myself that I was immune to cheating with him because he wasn´t my type physically. How silly because I did fantasize about him!
      Foolishly, I opened up to him because he was just a friend after all (meanwhile, I knew he was no good as a romantic partner because I knew his history as a harem king).

      Some years later and single, I found myself involved in a complete EU romantic relationship with this guy. It took me by surprise, I really felt like it was something that just happened out of the blue (while in reality, it had been developing on some level over time). It was the worst relationship I´ve ever had. I won´t go into detail now but I ended up needing anxiety and anti-depressant medication.

      Now I´m thinking I will never be friends with men again, only with those that are gay. It´s too confusing. If they´re EU or ACs they will get to you precisely because you think they are just a friend.

      • Lilia says:

        Just want to add, in those years when we were friends, he knew exactly what he was doing and how he was grooming me for his harem. I´m deducing this now from some conversations we had at that time and that I (foolishly) didn´t pay much attention to.

        To me, his attention was flattering and gave me the false illusion that I was the exception to the rule of his AC ways with women.

        • chloe says:

          Thanks Lilia,

          it’s amazing how we get suckered in becasue we value friendship. He just emailed me asking for a date, when I asked him what he meant by date, he appologized that he used the wrong terminology. i think he knows exactly what he’s doing and it angers me. I feel like i am actually dealing with an AC, not just a EU. Anyways, thanks for sharing your story.

      • Mymble says:

        The only good male friend i feel totally safe with is gay. There may be exceptions and I accept that other women may have different experiences, but I tend to find that men have a much more functional view of friendship. I.e. There has to be “something” in it for them, not merely the pleasure of your company. When I look back on people that I thought were good male friends, they either had ulterior motives, or they turned out to be not such good friends after all. I am “friendly” with various men I work with, neighbours etc but don’t attach too much importance to the “friendship” or expect too much from them.

  29. runnergirl says:

    Dearest Natalie, you must be clairvoyant. I just logged on to our local political blogs and found that the exMM is supporting an absolute ludicrous gun control issue relative our schools. As a classroom teacher for the past 30 years, it is the stupidest thing I have ever heard. The first thing I wanted to do was email him and tell him how stupid it was. Talk about fighting an urge! Rather than emailing him, I immediately logged on to BR and you nailed my urge. I could email him about how utterly incomprehensible his support of this stupid bill is. You are right. No matter what I say in an email relative to gun control in classrooms, it’ll end up being invited around for sex. Even though there would be no connection between gun control and sex in my mind that would be what would happen. So I will sit through my feelings and thoughts and not act on them. But…what a stupid bill…how could he support arming teachers in a classroom and/or administrators? This is the ultimate boundary buster for me as though being a cheating, married man with a wife and family wasn’t? When I read about it, I felt so violated. So yeah, this guy is so totally opposed to my core values. How totally ironic that it would be his political position on gun control that crossed my line. I so want to email him and tell him what an idiot he is on so many levels. I won’t. I’ll sit calmly on my feelings, feel them, and won’t act. It is so tempting to put my hand back in the fire to tell him how stupid he is. Rather, I’ll breathe and focus on me. Big breath, inhale 1-10…what a effing idiot…exhale 1-10…what an effing idiot. Thankfully the rogue bill will fail because he is in the minority in this state. Breathing because of you. You are one incredibly amazing woman Natalie…I hope you hear us!

  30. Australia says:

    Amazing timing as always.

    It is so important to support yourself in your decision for NC and keep reminding yourself its for YOU to heal. Build yourself as much as possible instead of pining away and wanting them back/validation.
    This way when they do contact you, its much easier not to respond.
    I found that when I was in the headspace of “I don’t know who I am, I need you to give me my identity and validation so I can get comfortable again”, I found it VERY hard not to resist his contact/crumbs.
    If I had built myself up more and was in the healthier headspace of “I am my own person – I am strong and I deserve better”, his contact attempts were much easier to ignore.
    So use any opportunity to build yourself up. Going through NC is HARD but sometimes there are those glorious moments of clarity, so hold onto those and use those as a platform to build your self-esteem.

  31. natashya says:

    i remember going totally frantic after the break up, social media stalking, looking at texts, photos, emails, breaking NC — completely out of control.

    one of my friends told me i HAD TO go full NC, which meant blocking social media stuff, deleting phone numbers, text messages, emails, photos off my computer etc. i finally agreed with him and i did all of it, while hysterically screaming and crying. i felt as if i couldn’t survive without all of it.
    i was wrong. i am still here, definitely not cured from the assclown flu, but not having any avenues open to add to the pain has helped me tremendously.

    i know it is SO HARD to go NC in the beginning. it truly is like kicking an addiction, but after a few weeks, the itch does subside…. little by little you will start to feel better, less anxious and frantic.

    the biggest part of my resistance was the feeling that it was so ‘final’ (yep, still engaging that dead horse), so i put all the emails and photos on a USB stick and gave it to a friend. i will get it back in a year and i’m sure by that time i will just reformat it and put it to good use :)

    • beth d says:

      Natasha The final thing was always my downfall. The fact that I knew I could never talk to him again. Of course him calling or texting just when I thought I was free of him always made it that much harder. It truly is an addiction that tugs at you and you are never fully over it. My worst mistake was after 6 months of NC taking his bday call out of curiosity or whatever. I did miss the friendship and I missed him and that is normal because we did have some really good times. I thought I could handle it. I thought I was over him. I realize now the addiction may always be there. I couldn’t believe how fast he started to get me back into the web. I ended up meeting him for lunch and the hand holding, charming began and I ended up kissing him. I couldn’t sleep for three days. Of course I realized quickly I had to go back to NC and he was totally insulted since he felt he made progress to “repairing us”. I told him I have to think of me and my mental health. I have thought of your feelings for too long at the exclusion of mine. The relationship was never balanced and he even admitted that. I couldn’t believe I had to go back to the grieving process all over again and in a way worse since I know it really does have to be FINAL this time. I also have hope that this will get better and better. I can’t wait to get to the one year mark. I really am getting better day by day but this is definitely a battle ROYAL.

      • natashya says:

        the first time i broke NC was after a month or so and it really set my recovery back. it felt like i had made 1 step forward and had to do 2 steps back. it was not a tiny slip up and that’s why i’ve been very adamant about it since. it’s been 10 weeks or so for me and there’s no going back.

        however, i do miss the friendship, the good times, the laughs, the companionship but the dynamics have changed. if i were to call him now, i have absolutely nothing to say to him. plus, i really don’t want to know if he’s with someone else, or even that he’s happy. i don’t want him back, but i also don’t want to know details about his life. i haven’t reached the blissful state of indifference, yet.

        it will get better. i promise. but it’s like quitting smoking. once you quit, to stay quit don’t ever light one up again.

        you can do it!

        • beth d says:

          I have to do it. I know that if I am ever going to have peace and happiness he cannot be in my life at any level. I tried the friendship thing after much bullying and NC. Doesn’t work. Hurts more, you don’t want to really know what is going on in their life, they still have the ability to hurt you as a friend and they get a chance to mind puck you!! Nope NC all the way….

        • Victorious says:

          Natashya is right. I tried being friends with the ex (at his insistence) and it was a disaster. Now I have no idea what or who he is doing and that is so liberating. The added bonus is that if you are NC, he doesn’t know you are still single and tucked up in your jimmy jams by half nine every night with a mug of cocoa. In his mind you could be engaged to the man of your dreams, or having the time of your life dating a string of adorable sexy men. Ultimately, NC gives you the distance you need to disengage emotionally so that you think of them less and less until you get to the point where youreally don’t care what they are doing or what they think you are doing. It works slowly but surely. When I feel low and feel like I need a “fix” of him, I think of Natalie saying “trust the process.” And of course…”He just isn’t that special.” Cos he really really isn’t.

  32. MJ says:

    Once again another brilliant post, Natalie. Thanks very much! It can be hard to enforce NC without feeling guilty, but your words inspire me and keep me going.

  33. Little Star says:

    Thank you Natalie for another wonderful post!!! I keep resisting to contact my EX AC:(, miss him like mad (sorry, if annoy anyone here with my saga stories!), but that’s how I feel…I even thought that I need to find another man in order to forget my EX, but your articles Natalie/comments are stopping me all the time when I have an urge! Fighting with myself, makes me angry, why do I need a guy who gave me NOTHING, what is wrong with me? When I am going to stop wanting crumbs?!

    • Diane says:

      We stop wanting crumbs when we start valuing ourselves. Which can be a real battle sometimes! I go through the same thing- super proud of myself for not missing him, then all of a sudden I get the urge to text or call. It’s maddening. But it does pass. I think the urge to contact is just habit, and distraction from feeling sad, stressed, bored, etc. Natalie really nailed it in this post. As always! :)

      • Little Star says:

        Yes Diane, you are right, one day we feel one way, another day we feel different. I was doing so well, joined MeetUp group, started to run in our beautiful park, meeting friends, working etc, NO dating…but yet again feel a bit lonely and all these crazy emotions started coming out. Maybe because of Valentine’s Day is coming, and all around me “loved up” and me feeling lonely?

        • Diane says:

          I hear ya. Most of my social circle are couples now, or else angry single people. I’m not either right now- I’m just me. Most of the time that’s great. Sometimes it’s not. I take great comfort in the fact that life is always changing, and just because I’m not in a happy couple right now doesn’t mean I will never be again. Hold on to that Little Star!

  34. Mymble says:

    Good post.
    Ive been through various periods of NC – 5 days, then 6 weeks, then 5 months, each time falling off the wagon and either responding to contact by him or breaking it myself on impulse. This time I believe I am really really done, it is NC forever. I am at a place now where the thought that I will never see or speak to him again in my life does not distress me at all. At one time that thought made me feel panicky, distraught. I have so much more emotional energy to put into myself, my life, and those in my life who do matter. This blog has been very helpful to me in understanding the processes, that there was nothing special about him, or the situation. Many people go through this.
    All the best to those still struggling. It will get easier and better but you have to make it happen for yourself.

    • beth d says:

      I do have to admit the thought of never seeing him or speaking to him again is still distressing to me. I can’t wait to get to that point. I just pray to God he leaves me alone this time. I have never made it so clear that I want to cut ties completely but since he is a Narc you can’t count on him respecting your boundaries. I know this time though that I am strong and resolved to get this energy vampire out of my life.

  35. Ka says:

    Such a great great post and impeccable timing.
    Last night I dreamt of going to his house and hanging around outside in the middle of the night. I was naked and wet and it was snowy out, then suddenly it was dawn and the door open and all his kids came out and him and his wife and there I was in this embarrassing situation…
    No Contact is the way forward! With good projects to do for myself to stay busy and focused in healthy ways – totally brilliant. Thank you – Ka

  36. lo j says:

    Runnergirl … is he Yosemite Sam? Lol! When I look back on all my exes, its amazing how misaligned our values really were.

  37. Shyner says:

    I am really struggling st the moment with this, my enormous lack of self-worth when it comes to men, and being very confused about whether everything is my fault. I got together with someone a few months ago who I was with 20 years ago. it was all very soppy and lovely. I ignored some flags: he drinks like a fish, smokes loads of weed all the time saying that they’re just cigarettes because he doesn’t really get stoned off them, hasn’t seen his children for a year despite saying he’s desperate to, had a breakdown for a year, has no home, has no job (used to be v successful and in demand, is about to declare himself bankrupt, is pennyless. He moved in, more or less. I realised that he’s v demanding sexually. A cpl of months ago, he went away to work on a project, one month in I visited. It is a place that has associated bad memories for me, which he knew about. I watched him flirt his way up and down the beach and ignore me, didn’t touch me – I think I was cramping his style. He split up with me in the middle of the night, with his back to me, saying that he couldn’t turn over because his knee hurt (motorbike crash when v drunk a few weeks before). The next day, he told me not to tell the others he had split with me, and then he went to the beach for the day with them and had a lovely time. We talked. Back together a few days later. I came home a couple of weeks ago. He’s still there, not really talking to me now. I asked him if there was still an us, he said I was insulting him, yes there is, we have to talk though, I’m mental. Couldn’t shake my doubts about there being someone else. Asked him in a text this morning, he denied it. Has since ignored me. All his stuff his here. Tonight, a friend and I will move it to my shed. I told him that days ago but he has not responded to it. He is blanking me. Am I mad to even care? I think I have been used as an ego boost, on-tap sex, and a storage facility. Surplus to requirements now.

    • jewells says:

      Shyner; You’ve got the first pieces, coming to terms with what you really are to him. Now the step is NC, get his stuff back to him or out somehow and cut him off asap. You need time and space to process the feelings that are surfacing and you need him to be no where near you to do this properly. If he’s still around he will continue to mess with you. We’re here for you, stay strong, keep reading BR – you’ll see many similar stories. I also recommmend a therapist to help you with perspective from an objective pov.

    • Kit-Kat says:

      Shyner… EWWEEEEE, that is not a pretty picture your painting. Run as fast & as far away from him as possible ASAP. He is poison to you. I would tell him to have his things gone by a certain date or you will put them in the garbage. He sounds like such a scumbag….

    • Allison says:


      Please ask yourself what is is redeeming about this guy? I’m sorry, but not only is he a loser (addict, jobless, no money, homeless, deadbeat dad) but he he is a disrespectful loser.

      Get rid of this guy, as he will suck you emotionally and financially dry.

      • Shyner says:

        He pretty much already has! Not so much financially but he has been quite happy to let me top up his phone, give him money when I visited.

        • Allison says:


          This is what you’re allowing!

          Make this guy your epiphany, as you can not go much lower than him!

          • Allison says:


            Your main focus is misdirected.

            Any one of these issues should have been a deal breaker (addict, no money, homeless, deadbeat dad), why do you want someone, who clearly has no future?

            Can you imagine this person as the father of your child? What do your friends and family think of him?

            • Shyner says:

              My friends thinks he’s dreadful. I am so exhausted by everything. It just keeps going over and over in my head that he very quickly replied saying he wasn’t sleeping with anyone and then completely dropped off the radar. Weirds me out very much. I just want him to disappear out of my life quietly and I really wish his stuff wasn’t here.

              • Ms Determined says:


                Here’s three separate options I thought of in about no seconds flat to deal with this loser’s stuff.

                1. A can of petrol and a careless match.
                2. Put it all out the front of your house with a sign on it saying “PLEASE TAKE THIS FREE STUFF”.
                3. eBay the shit out of it.

                Personally, option 3 appeals most because you will recoup some funds.

                Once your place looks the way it did before you crossed paths with this epic loser, look around and ask yourself “Is it even physically possible to continue to have feelings for anybody this fucking dumb?” I mean, seriously. Who leaves all their wordly possessions in the care of someone they are actively fucking over? Does he think his lies flip the ‘on’ switch to the magical forcefield around his stuff? Or does he think his possessions are safe at your place because you’re too stupid to work out he is actively fucking you over? He needs to go back and re-take “How to be an Assclown: Lying 101”, because clearly, MASSIVE ASSCLOWN FAIL.

                Why, oh why, do we get so hung up on the useless crap they leave behind? Because it’s the physical incarnation of all the emotional crap they leave behind! Yet we are paralysed by what is just STUFF, unable to do anything to get rid of it, or even prioritise our own SELVES before it, because it supposedly has ‘value’. Nope. It’s still just stuff. And it is certainly not more valuable than YOU. Whats more, that shitty stuff is in your space. Do whatever you need to do to just get rid of it, fast. And don’t feel obliged to move it around until it’s in a spot that’s more palatable to you. You don’t need to take responsibility for his shit, just like you don’t need to take responsibility for his shitty behaviour. You only have to take responsibility for you, and right now, you could do with a spring clean. First his stuff, then him. When he gets back looking for his shit, all tanned and relaxed from actively fucking you over, I refer you back to option 1 above.

                • Shyner says:

                  I still haven’t heard anything. There’s been tears today and a big talk with a friend. It freaks me out to think he’s topped himself but there’s nothing I can do about so I just have to try and not think about that. There is also the possibility that he won’t come back from where he is. I am thinking of putting his stuff in storage and sending him a msg telling him where and the code, and then blocking him.

  38. Sumpingrey says:

    Thanks Natalie. Being in the exact same situation, except more complicated because…., and having initiated the NC, it’s an effort to go on living as if nothing’s happened while I am all shredded inside. He hasn’t contacted me either…the “am I relevant/ important enough/ does he miss me/ does he care/ are we over????” thing is nasty. I read BR every single time I wake up at 3am or tear up at work or remember what were possibly the best 12 mths of my life. You give me strength and hope that I will emerge better from this. Thanks again, Natalie.

  39. Shyner says:

    Thank you, Jewells. I am absolutely done in by the whole experience. We got on so well at first and now I don’t know which way is up. I have just been reading about people’s relationships with sociopaths and, honestly, I am sighing as a result – so much in common. He has told so many weird, little lies and I’m just baffled. I am worried that he’s going to turn up here unannounced. I also think you are right about getting some counselling. My tendency to beat myself up and be uber-forgiving to men in my life is damaging me. I doubt myself constantly. I was v insecure when he went away because of the place it is and phoned/texted too much. He has told me that I have brought all of this on myself. I half believe him.

    • jewells says:

      You only half believe him because you don’t believe in yourself. Self esteem, or the lack there of is the killer, and it’s what let these guys into our lives in the first place. If we had solid self esteem, they wouldn’t have had a look in, we’d have politely ‘passed’ on the first red flag, not get attached and get swept up in the fantasy. Prince charming does not exist (those who present themselves as such are only scoundrels in parade), but respectful, loving, caring and honorable men do. We just have to be that person ourselves and then we will have the ability to pick him out.

      • jewells says:

        To add, it’s not just in being that person, but armed with insight and knowledge and good self esteem. I’m sure most of us would qualify with most of the points, but lacking self esteem and knowledge put(s) us at risk of compromising those qualities…

        • Shyner says:

          He is getting a lot of airtime amongst me and my friends. I don’t like the fact that he hasn’t given me a straight answer when I texted to ask if he thought it best we called it a day. Just blanked me. Crazy.

          • jewells says:

            Shyner, he will never give you a straight answer. I’m pretty sure mine was a narcissist, he lied even when faced with the truth, they are quite amazing really. He also won’t want to call it a day, so long as you are giving him the power to call it, he won’t, he’d rather keep you on tap for using another time later on when you ‘get over your issues’ (in his pov), or are having a weak moment and he get with his agenda again. Mine even hinted at potential after crying over having to fess up to his wife and gave me the ‘you’ve saved my marriage’ bs, I want only to be married once, I want to make good on the promises I made to my wife…then went on to say that he’s learned his lesson and won’t go near anyone again until he’s no longer married (huh?), and even though his wife and counsellor required he cut ties with me, told me that he had kept my info (huh?)… Blah verbal diarreha, with suggestions that he still sees me as an ‘option’. Flake. Saying one thing to appease the wife and counsellor, just the same way he told me what I wanted to hear to get me on board in the first place, then saying shit to give an inkling of potential future with me to keep the option running in case things don’t actually work out with the wife. Making committed noises to them, but doing it in a way that told me he really wasn’t. These guys really don’t get it, most never will. They are crazy makers.

          • dancingqueen says:

            Shyner as sad at it is, he *is* giving you a straight answer. He doesn’t want a relationship. He doesn’t need to keep repeating it, his actions are saying it all.

            You need to get rid of his stuff and nc him. You are not a storage facility and it is beyond disrespectful to treat you like one:(

          • natashya says:

            shyner, why not take your power back and kick this selfish, cruel oxygen thief out of your life instead of waiting for this loser to respond. calling it a day? how about calling it a life?

            he sounds like a useless, gross twat. you gotta ask yourself why you’d want that. seriously, throw his drunk ass out the door, go NC and choose you, PLEASE.

            • Shyner says:

              Thanks for your comments everyone. I think we are all singing from the same songsheet. I think he has chosen to blank me in response to our r’ship because he won’t have anywhere to stay when he comes back and I’ve got all his stuff. Although, he could try a bit harder to keep me sweet,eh! I’m afraid I have texted him this morning, saying that I think he’s lied about seeing someone else and is obviously getting some kind of twisted kick out of blanking me. He is exploiting and amplifying my already known insecurity so that he doesn’t come across as quite so messed up. I’m wise to it now, I think. I have asked him nicely for some kind of explanation for his behaviour but he doesn’t think I’m worth speaking to. The only real positive I can get from this so far is that I think it might have inadvertantly dealt with my insecurities, somehow. I feel more empowered. I don’t like having to wait for him to come back next week. I want to text him now and say – ‘we’re done, you horrible, sad manipulative little man’.

              • Shyner says:

                I literally didn’t realise that he could be so nasty. I keep remembering things. He didn’t kiss me for the first ten days of my visit, because he said his lip hurt from the bike accident. I watched him smoke, drink and eat with no problems. He’s a massive liar, manipulative and unkind. I gave him a roof, sex, food, money, an ego boost – made him feel a bit more normal by being a girlfriend. I have one insecurity which he has jumped on and turned to his advantage. How cruel. I can’t believe I fell for it all. He seemed very into me. I know he will blame my insecurity for the end of the r’ship.

              • grace says:

                Stop texting him. The texting is desperate, passive aggressive and humiliating, and making you feel worse.
                Even in a good relationship, you don,t talk serious issues via text, never mind this situation you are in. You are reduced to it as he,s avoiding you. just let him stay gone. He,s got nothing for you, no love, no respect, no compassion, no explanation. He doesn’t have it. You don,t get integrity and good intentions from someone like that. stop trying to get him to give it you.
                you may think the sun shines out of his big red clowny ass but he is not that special. Accept it. Life becomes so much simpler when you stop trying to make people be what they are not. All that energy you could be putting to better things.

                • jewells says:

                  I have two more movie suggestions on EUM’s! They are both Brit movies – Wild Bill and Tyrannosaur. Tyrannosaur is the most vivid painting of EU men and a woman who loves them. Brutal and beautiful.

                • Shyner says:

                  I’m going to read this one thousand times before I go to sleep. The sad thing is I would be saying the same things to any friend who allowed themselves to get into this situation.

                  • Shyner says:

                    The texting thing has been chipping away at my self respect without me even noticing until now. His words have had an enormous impact on me and so have the nice things he’s done. I am very confused, and I keep shaking my head – I just don’t get it. Could I be massively wrong about everything? I don’t think so but because I have clear insecurities that I know all about, I fear that they blur my view.

  40. Marie83 says:

    The problem I have with ‘choosing me’ is that I never did – my ex has cut contact with me – Basically our relationships was 3 years of him blowing hot and cold, of him leaving the relationship only to return and I obviously didn’t hesitate to take him back, after the last official break-up (last June) we stayed in contact and I assumed due to stuff he was saying that there would be a reconciliation – then after about 2 mths he blew ice cold and had a meltdown over something very minor and I pretty much knew there was more to it – he kept saying cryptic things such as ‘you are going to hate me’, but when I asked what he meant he wouldnt respond – eventually I found out he had met someone else who he had been sleeping with and she was pregnant – he told me how unhappy he was and she was a ‘psycho’ but that he was standing by her because of the child and because if he didn’t she would go back to her ex who used to physically abuse her! She had a miscarriage very early in the pregnancy and ended the relationship with him. We were still in contact this whole time and I was utterly bereft – we had contact a couple of times and i kidded myself that he had ‘seen the light’then he told me he didn’t want to get back with me as he didn’t want to go ‘from relationship to relationship’ – the girl at this time was constantly txting him and showing up at his work place but he assured me he wasn’t going to get back with her, she was with someone else and although he was sad that the miscarriage had happened he was relieved that he didn’t have to be with her – she moved to Aberdeen and so I relaxed a bit – His birthday was new years eve and I was supposed to be meeting him at a club. However he rang me and said she was there so he left – I went around we talked, got intimate then afterwards he was all like ‘I don’t know what I want, this isn’t a good idea’ It turns out she moved back months ago and he has been ‘helping her out through a rough patch’and they maet up reguarly, I felt so used – when I got home I saw he had added her on facebook. He has now broken contact with me – he won’t admit he is with her and even blames me for making him feel bad on ‘his birthday’. I rejected myself so much that i’m not sure I can get make to an emotionally healthy place

    • Naz says:

      I am sorry for the pain, it hurts.
      He’s and idiot. I can’t promise that the pain will be gone by morning but know that from across the miles there are women who “gather” here and will be sending their words of support and prayers that things get easier.

      You need to get away or at least read a bit more on this site. Try reading the blog about them not being that special…I read it all the time.

      Keep your chin up, you are young and you will find better, he doesn’t deserve you.

  41. Inner Jewel says:

    I had to cut contact with several friends who were playing “spy” and going behind my back to tell my ex every detail about my life. And much of their information about me was untrue, painting a picture to him of me being completely deranged.

    They are all deleted, blocked & I even changed my phone number. All was quiet for months, until this past weekend.

    I noticed one friend was parked outside of my house. As soon as I went to the window to get a better look, she took off. The next night, my ex-husband was parked outside of my house and took off when I went to the window.

    I haven’t been threatened or anything. I just felt extremely uncomfortable and violated that they would decide to “stalk” me. I wanted to break NC by telling them all to stay the eff away, but I know it would just be feeding their need for attention.

    I am a little disturbed by the fact that these are supposed “adults” with nothing better to do on the weekend.

    • jewells says:

      Hi Inner Jewel; yeah, I’d stop refering to them as ‘friends’, they are demonstrating clearly that that is not what they are. Keep a log of the times, cars, license plate numbers and if you know exactly who’s driving. You may need it if things escalate, so you have the history leading up to if anything does happen, or threats to come. Meanwhile, ignoring them may bore them to death and they’ll get tired of their little game. They may be just trying to make you nervous, but be vigilant, though don’t let them know what you see or if it affects you.
      I would be very disturbed by this behaviour myself.

      • Inner Jewel says:

        Thanks Jewells :)
        I’m being very cautious because I’d rather be wrong and look like an idiot than let me guard down and end up with a bad situation.

        I just can’t believe that these are people in their 40’s…

  42. Lacy says:

    Thks Nat for the post also thks yhogurt great input,and advice thks for the hug and I’m hugging u back that made me feel a Lil better

  43. Confused2 says:

    This past Wed has been one month- NC.
    I initiated it. He has not tried to contact me. This is probably the 5th time in a year and half relationship (or whatever it was) that i have broken it off. Each time he has at least sent a text or attempted to reach me within a week. This time feels so different and perhaps so “final”. Why has he not TRIED to reach out to me? Of course i didnt break it off to get a reaction from him. I did it because i know i needed to. But still i sit here in panic mode and now obsess over thinking about why he hasn’t tried to get a hold of me. Did i not matter? Does he not miss me? Why all the times before did he, and now he hasnt?. Is it because he is sick of it? Hurt? Tired? Buying time?
    Thoughts can be so crippling.
    I’m trying hard not to reach out. I want him to know that although a relationship was not possible (i dont want that) I still somehow want to maintain a connection with him. We were good friends… or so i thought. If i was that much of a good friend… how can he just let things be? What am i really feeling here? If i reach out and let him know that although i asked him to please leave me alone (because he kept giving me mixed signals and i just couldnt take it anymore)that i am still here for him as a friend and hope that we can make ammends one day. I am afraid that because i asked him to “leave me alone” that he may be afraid to reach out to me even if he wanted to. I want to let him know that although i wont be texting or calling him every day like before or “hanging out” with him that im ok with the occasional how are you text, or keeping in touch. We were very close during this year and half and perhaps the friendship part can still be salvaged. How do i let him know this without looking like a complete idiot?
    Am i denial?

    • yoghurt says:

      As luck would have it, I posted a link earlier, did a little reading around of it and saw this. Your post very much reminds me of it.

      As for the friends issue, if you’re meant to be friends you will be, in a while from now when you’re both absolutely healed from the relationship. But it won’t require you to say-things-without-saying-them and speaking in code. So now – when he’s clearly very much on your mind and you DON’T feel that that situation would run with him – then don’t.

      Losing a connection with someone is hard and painful and you grieve it, but it’s a natural part of having relationships and having them break down.

    • Lau_ra says:

      I’m afraid you are in denial. I’ve been on this “we could still be friends” for 5 months, and I rejected the idea of deleting him from everywhere, until I realised I’m just deceiving myself and holding onto idea he might actually miss me (though it was him who decided to end everything by vanishing). So please save your time – use it for yourself, and not some useless thinking how things could be. If he would want to contact you someday-he knows where to find you. So if he doesn’t do that, its cause he doesn’t want that, not cause he is afraid or shy or whatever.

    • Kit-Kat says:

      Confused2. I wouldnt say you are in denial. Its more like you are grieving your loss. It takes time & space away from the relationship. I can say from my experience NC saved my sanity. I felt like I was on a roller coaster from hell with my emotions. THey were all over the place. One minute I was crying and the next I was mad, then sad, then mad ect..
      Believe me when I say someday you will not want to be his friend. My thought process was the same as yours in the early stages of my breakup. I didnt know how to live without him/ us in my life. I had to pick up all the pieces of the broken puzzle (my heart) he left behind and rebuild it. I read everything & anything about breakups & grief I could find. By the grace of god I found Nat’s book & this blog. It gave me some answers,encouragement,strengh, empowerment,and made me realize I would never want to be friends with someone who tore my heart out & world apart so easily after knowing I had just lost my beloved mother 2 mths prior.
      You DO NOT need to know about his life & he DOESNT need to know about yours. You need to find a way to let it go & move on with your life. I was stuck in ruts along the way but I just keep going one foot in front of the other & you will need to do the same. Its your choice what you want to do but keeping in contact is like what Nat always mentions: Rinse, Lather, Repeat. You need to break that cycle. They are not that special & we deserve better!!!

  44. Mya says:

    I empathize with so many on here because I was in that position last year after he broke up with me. I finally, in Sep, opted out of the “friendship” he was “gracing” me with and walked away – for good.

    I have just now begun to date again in Jan. and honestly, I feel more empowered, I take no BS, and the guy I’m dating knows he’ll get dropped real soon if he doesn’t respect me as I deserve.

    I know it hurts, but you will see the blessing in all of this.
    My mantra when I walked away:

    “You will feel pain whether you stay or walk away, but at least you know the pain will go away when walking away.”
    Yea I should patent this phrase. lol
    It made so much since to me because who knows how long he would have kept me on this merry-go-round.

    Another thing: Give yourself time to heal before dating. In completely walking away, you will naturally begin to, little by little, pick yourself back up, gain your self-esteem and confidence back, so that when you get with someone else – all of that is in tact and you can hold your own. Many told me to date right after the break-up but nope, i wasn’t ready…i would have just attached myself to a man for acceptance and love instead of giving it to myself first.
    Now, I can freely give it.

  45. Sanntay says:

    I have been trying to get a hold of, or even find my self esteem so that I can begin the healing process. I feel so stupid, ashamed, and used. What’s worse is I sanctioned it. I agreed to a casual relationship with a co-worker, knowing full well that someone always ends up getting hurt in these situations and that someone always ends up being me. But I went against my better judgment because hey, someone was giving me some attention, something I had wanted/needed for so long. He was clear, stated that he was not interested in dating anyone exclusively, that he was having sex with other women, I knew that he was on a dating site, and we even agreed that we didn’t want things to get weird at work. Our phone conversations were pretty non-existent, in 5 months of dealing with him we spoke on the phone maybe 5 times, otherwise, it was mostly texting or whatever lines/propositions he dropped on me at work. Things seemed to be progressing as agreed (I guess I had convinced myself) but sometimes he would run hot and cold, he would be snappy at work, or he would ignore/dismiss me. Sometimes I would text him and he wouldn’t respond. The physical part of being with him was phenomenal – he was very attentive, very passionate, and always made me feel desired. Over the holidays, he took vacation, so of course, I didn’t hear from him. I texted him on Christmas and he responded about 4 hours later…OK, maybe he was busy. I let my feelings get the better of me and did a bit of Facebook stalking, where I discovered that he was Facebook friends with another female co-worker he claimed he wasn’t interested in, yet he is not Facebook friends with me. From this connection, I learned even more about him and his past life…again information he hadn’t bothered to share with me. I realize you cannot and probably should not know everything about a person’s past, but I felt betrayed that he shared this info with her and not me? Of course, I couldn’t confront him with it, because then I’d look like a psycho. So, from this point, I’d decided that for the new year, I would not allow myself to be used anymore, because he clearly knows how I feel about him, but continues to take advantage of that…primarily because I allow it. I knew I needed to move on for my own sanity. So during one of the blowing hot phases, I buckled and found myself back at his place again, only for his physical release of course, and afterwards he told me I had to go. I was perplexed and hurt, because usually I’d spend the night and go to work from there the next day, but not this time, he said he had “things to do”. So I gathered my humiliation, got dressed, and left. I drove home completely numb. I could not believe that I had ignored my resolve and allowed myself to be used again. No wonder he continues to use me, I’m the dumb ass that keeps going back for more. I can’t blame him totally, because he set the boundaries and I knew what I was getting into, but I wasn’t expecting it to be so callous and call-girl-ish. I didn’t even get a meal this time…just a glass of water. If I had known that it was gonna be so “service me and then leave”, I never would have gone home with him. I KNOW THAT I MUST/CAN/WILL STOP!!! There is no way I can go NC because I have to work with him and he often comes to me for assistance. It would be so much easier to get over him if I didn’t have to see him every day. But I WILL NOT LOSE MY JOB OVER SOME USER AC WHO DOESN’T CARE ABOUT ME OR MY FEELINGS. I need help, I need this forum, I need hypnosis, I need prayer, something to break this cycle of idiocy, pain and helplessness. Where did I bury my self esteem?

    • yoghurt says:

      Hey Sanntay.

      Just read your post, and the part about your ‘arrangement’ and also the statement that you needed a physical release.

      I think that often, these arrangement are set up on the assumption that the man gets sexual release and in return gives the woman… sexual release. That’s the pay-off for you. After all, we’re equal, right? Women have needs too, right? We can have the same attitude to sex as men, right? So it’s just a transaction – he gets laid, you get laid and everyone’s happy.

      It’s a nice theory and maybe it works for some people (although I’m inclined to think a minority) but, speaking as someone who got myself into several of these situations, I could never explain why I always ended up thinking resentfully “Well, at least a prostitute gets PAID”.

      Without going into the ins-and-outs (ha) of my theories of gendered sexual engagement, the thing that got me out of that cycle was realising that sex – like anything that you might prioritise above your values and your self-respect – is a good servant but a bad master. There are a lot of confusing messages about it out there and one of them is that the Cool Wild Women can detach their emotions from sex in the same way that men can.

      Maybe some can but, really, the message is rubbish and imo propagated by MEN who want an easy ride (again – ha!). If you can’t have no-strings sex without feeling rubbish then you need to stop having no-strings sex, no matter how lonely you are and how hot the man. Take up white-water rafting instead. Better by far to be a happy emotionally healthy person who has lots of adventures but no sex than a strung-out caffeine-addicted neurotic with a permanently gnawing sense of anxiety but, hey, plenty of condoms in her bedside cabinet.

      It’s also worth mentioning that I think a lot of us go into ‘casual relationships’ with an assumption that we’ll receive the basic level of care, honesty and respect that they afford to everyone else, cos it’s all so ‘open’ and ‘above-board’. And then we don’t, because men get into casual relationships precisely because they DON’T want to bother with them. And then that hurts and leaves us feeling worthless.

      Anyroad, might be totally off-beam but it does seem to me that your attitude towards sex is something that you’re not entirely sure about from your post. At any rate, remember that the you’ve got the choice and the power in this situation to protect yourself from more pain x

      • kookie says:


        THIS. i don’t think anyone is naturally wired to prefer no strings attached sex but I was so deathly curious how women who do train themselves to do it. i was gonna learn!

        i tried, i really tried because it didn’t seem i had much prospect of the real thing and i figured there was no need to be a nun while i wait or rather while i don’t wait cos i had already given up on the train of love ever coming. this isn’t the 50s and i didn’t have to be sexless cos i was relationshipless.

        despite my efforts, i am officially declaring my experiment to morph into one of these superwomen over. i really aint cut out for it and though i had great sex i’d rather have even better sex or even slightly less great sex with someone who really cares.

        because i was not being authentic i was actually busting my EUMs’ boundaries of wanting no strings by stealthily adding strings by trying to add ‘rules of engagement’ ( basically to make it more palatable to myself) to something that exists because these people don’t want any rules. rules and expectations are for relationships.

        so i was simultaneously saying i didn’t want a relationship but adding rules to my arrangement to make it as relationship-like as i could without the things i was scared of like true intimacy.haha, what madness.

        NSA SHOULD be short term /detached to be healthily exited from. you sure as hell not gonna end things when you should when you make your NSA a morphed pseudo-relationship. the call girl like arrangements may feel icky but they guarantee you won’t keep yourself in that situation for more than you should, NSA is meant to be transient. mutant NSA arrangements that feel like fake relationships avoid the awkward feeling of being a hooker, you think this person respects you more, maybe even loves you in some warped way, but you set yourself up to get hooked ( again, ‘good’ NSA NOT hooked, easy to walk away from) and hurt more later

        more power to the women who have discovered the secret of having sustained ( i think most of us can healthily get away with a once off very short term thing) NSA and really, truly feeling good about it. i do not judge them at all, i get their rational completely, i more than slightly envy them but above all i wish them all the best with a lifestyle i am forced to retire from .there is room for all types of views on sex but don’t try and force yourself into something that won’t and can’t fit you.

      • Kit-Kat says:

        Yoghurt. Your post was spot on in so many ways. I really enjoyed reading it as I do all of your post.
        Thanks for sharing :)

        • yoghurt says:

          Thanks Kit-Kat :) I like your posts too.

          kookie – I’m broadly in agreement with you but the older I get (and the longer I go without sex without turning into a shrivelled-up, humourless old prune, as I was led to believe) the more I think that the whole NSA sex myth is a bit of a con.

          Having sex with someone that you feel attached to is the BEST FEELING EVER – way better than unattached sex. Admittedly if they’re EU or an AC then it’s going to be a total car-wreck, but the reason we risk it is because the sexual attachment feels nice.

          I can’t vouch for this yet, but I should imagine that having sex with someone in a mutual, committed and loving relationship is even better. The emotion itself is great, it’s the blocking of it (in whatever sense) that hurts.

          I think it’d be a shame if I’d trained myself out of the chance to feel like that again, although in any case I couldn’t when I tried so it’s a bit of a moot point.

          Either way though, I am also – in my crotchety dotage – getting more and more annoyed at the pressure that women are put under to detach from their emotions, as if the emotion is some kind of slightly shameful and antisocial infection. Especially as that pressure generally originates from men who are then quite happy to turn around and say “Well, if she lets you treat her like that then she’s only got herself to blame” or somesuch similar bollocks.

          So don’t feel as if you’re missing out – just remember how lovely it’s going to be with a lovely man and feel lucky. :)

          “so i was simultaneously saying i didn’t want a relationship but adding rules to my arrangement to make it as relationship-like as i could without the things i was scared of like true intimacy.haha, what madness.”

          Ha, perceptive point – I did this too! My attitude was always “Seeing as I’m totally cool with this and totally above all that boyfriend-girlfriend stuff, you can be TOTALLY honest with me in a way that you couldn’t be with other girls”. Ho ho ho. Cos THAT was going to happen.

  46. Paris says:

    After 6 months of NC I broke down. I wanted his text to mean something & so I called. Yet & behold he’s the same. Guess what he invited me for sex & I stupidity went. This all occurred last night. Today he told me we could be friends & just see what happens. He said he didn’t want to be exclusive & we couldn’t just rush back to what we had. Really, I’m not mad at him one bit. Cause I read every word Natalie said & she said it would go this way. I’m sad right now. I kindly told him no thank you & I crossed my boundaries for a moment of hurt. But I will not continue down this path again. Please don’t contact me because I don’t have a need to contact him. I’m not in the business of a friendship with him. I asked that the Baggage Reclaim help me start NC all over again. The hardest part is knowing he got exactly what he wanted & did nothing different to get it. I read this article this morning after I returned home. As the tears ran down my face I have to know I can never let this happen again. How could I be so strong & then so weak. I’m sure he is somewhere laughing. Thanks Natalie I must get strong & stay strong. I almost lost my best friend behind this guy so I can’t tell her what I did. So I must share with only Baggage Reclaim Readers. I know I had a setback but I can overcome this. I said NO today so that’s a start.

    • Kit-Kat says:

      Paris. As u said you had a setback & fell off the NC wagon. Pick yourself up & jump back on it girl. What’s done is done & there is no changing it. Learn from your mistake & move forward. Dont look in that rearview mirror .. U can do this !!!!

    • Little Star says:

      Paris, please do not beat yourself… We all done that(contacting ACs and regret, feeling strong one day and weak another day)…couple of days ago I had an urge to contact EX AC, if he was back in UK or not, but thanks to Natalie’s post I stopped myself. How many time they have to humiliate us before we learn? That question I keep asking myself over and over again. You leaned your lesson, Paris, now time to move on and I think you are already in the right direction:)

  47. Tinkerbell says:

    Confused2. Sorry to tell you this but if you reach out to him, you will be “looking like a complete idiot” – your words. Don’t think you have initiated NC. You are still very much preoccuppied with him. What you need to be doing is blocking him from phone calls, texting, you name it, and NOT RESPONDING. The only way he should be able to reach you is by ringing your doorbell. If he has not tried to reach you, I doubt he will ring your doorbell. But, you never know, some guys are brazen. Also, you told him to leave you alone? He’s taking that literally. That’s what men do and how they think. They are wired differently from women. Don’t think he doesn’t know that he’s treated you shabbily. He could just be waiting you out, believing that you will be so miserable that you will contact him. Then, again, he may not even be thinking about you at all. Why contact him and ask to be his friend? That just does not work. You will be sucked back in all over again and it will be your own fault. You got away? Keep going. Give yourself a chance to meet someone else AFTER you take care of yourself mentally and emotionally. You are the priority. NOT HIM. He not that special that you need him for a friend. He would be no better friend than he was a lover. Don’t over think this. Right now, you just broken it off. Don’t call it NC when you’re still willing to give him a chance to screw with your head.

    • Revolution says:

      A perfect response, Tink. If it wasn’t so long, I’d have it embroidered on a pillow.

    • beth d says:

      Tinkerbell You said a mouthful with the “waiting you out” thing. My ex actually admitted to me once that he waited a few weeks to contact me to let me “cool off” He felt I would be alot more receptive to his attempts to repair especially when he thew in some jewelry and romantic date requests to talk it out. It really did work the first few times he did it because I loved him and was always looking for the good in him. Once I caught on to the pattern that trick was over. I always felt like the crazy one since I do have a much worse temper than he does and I would go off my rocker at his antics (especially the disappearing act) which I know now was totally justified. I remember calling him a scumbag and a POS and he made the biggest deal of that lol He stayed calm and cool and it always made me feel like the crazymaker when I knew deep down it was him! It is one of the many games they play to catch us off balance and get us back in the web.

  48. Naz says:

    Thank you Nat for once again reading so many of our thoughts.
    I have had NC since last October and I have some days when I felt my heart wanting to be extracted, disinfected and then returned.
    I have missed him or the version of him that I came to love.
    I made the mistake of checking his facebook profile funny enough when he was with me he never had one, now he is advertising his new girlfriend, where he takes her and everything on Facebook.
    I hurt, actually feel nauseas. It’s not as bad as it first felt but I still feel it.
    Especially at moments of stress and loneliness.
    While he has the fleet of women despite having this new woman.
    I am left invisible. I tried to in November start chatting to someone new. He was interested for all of 5 mins and then I never heard from him.
    I feel ugly, I feel like no one notices me or even looks my way. I feel as I did as a teenager the one that never got a Valentine’s Day card, the loser.
    Always the in the shadows, never noticed.
    I guess I always wanted to be the exception rather always the loser….turns out I feel like a loser.

    I was tempted to email him, ask him out of the blue if he missed us. Like the time before when he broke up with me only to return 18 months later.
    That time his excuse was he didn’t want a mixed race child. This time he didn’t break up with me, I caught him cheating, he got angry denied it and never spoke to me again other than to shout at me for checking his phone…

    I am picking up the pieces…someone said to me I smile alot but my eyes are sad…

    They weren’t far from the truth

    • grace says:

      Block him from Facebook. Yes you are going to feel bad if you chase racists who cheat on you. Flush the obvious shite from your life. It will give you the breathing space to make real changes for happiness.

    • yoghurt says:

      Naz, imagine that you had a friend who got involved with someone who was clearly a slimy piece of work and he left her for someone else.

      Whilst she was heartbroken and picking up the pieces, would you tell her it was her fault because she was clearly a loser? Would you tell her that it was because her hair wasn’t blonde enough and she wasn’t slim enough? Would you point out her lack of Valentine’s cards as evidence that she was doomed to be alone for the rest of her life? Would you tell her that the fact that he’d moved on and she hadn’t was down to his being ‘out of her league’?

      Bet you wouldn’t. And bet you’d want to smack anyone who did, hard. It would be an incredibly nasty thing to do and say to someone.

      Thing is, that’s exactly what you’re doing and saying to yourself. Common sense says that there are people who are plainer, more ‘losery’ (in the technical sense, if there is one) and who received as many Valentine’s in school as me or thee who are now in happy fulfilling relationships and thoroughly content, so is your criteria for receiving True Love really realistic?

      You can choose how you want to view this event. You can lock yourself in his nasty mindset of mixed-race babies and fb-peacockery if you like, but imo it’s a shallow and unpleasant place to be. OR you can see yourself as you are – as a flawed and fallible but infinitely valuable human being, worth exactly as much as anyone else in the world, who didn’t ever deserve to be treated badly, messed about or to have her self-esteem damaged.

      Your experiences of life are very different from mine in a lot of ways, but I recognise the negative self-talk very well. My last dalliance ended up being epically humiliating and I spent a long time telling myself that it was OBVIOUSLY because there was something wrong with me – too ugly, too old, unswishy hair, geeky job, scar on chin, inexpensive taste in clothes whatever whatever.

      As soon as I made the decision to stop telling myself those things, the pain changed. I didn’t immediately stop grieving or figure everything out all at once, but the background noise of “THIS PROVES THAT THERE’S SOMETHING WRONG WITH ME AND I’LL NEVER BE HAPPY” went away. That’s what makes the pain so septic and long-lasting.

      Next time you get onto that train of thought, imagine that you’re talking to a sad, hurt, heartbroken friend and tell yourself what you’d tell her. And try to believe it.

      And lots of love. You’ll get through this xx

      • yoghurt says:

        Oh, and the epic humiliator (father of my son) and his young pretty swishy-haired gf? I cannot tell you the number of times since they met that I’ve had cause to think “I’m SO glad I’m not in that relationship…”

        • Revolution says:

          HA! I hear you, yoghurt. I’ve had those thoughts too about the ex-AC and his new (now ex-) girlfriend.

          It’s like one of those horrible math problems from school:

          “If Mary’s train, travelling 200MPH, left Pittsburgh at 3:00pm, and John’s train, travelling 225MPH, left Arizona at 3:45pm, at what time would the massive fucking train wreck occur?”

          • Kit-Kat says:

            Revolution…HA,HA… I remember those questions too.. I live near Pittsburgh & I still cant answer that question:)..

  49. Magdalena says:

    I think the flip side to resistance is acceptance. Engaging in things like faux NC, frequent makeup/breakup, responding to things we shouldn’t, etc. is actually a way of resisting what we deeply know to be true: our relationships are broken beyond any kind of repair and we have got to let go. The more we resist the inevitable truth, the more drawn out and painful things become and the harder we struggle to prevent the finality of the end of our terrible relationships. I think learning to accept difficult and painful realizations, like that EUMs don’t care about anyone but themselves and that our relationships are based on fundamental untruths, ultimately allows us to stop resisting, start letting go, and embrace peace.


    • Beth D says:

      Magdalena Very well put….all of your post. Acceptance is what I have been working on. Resistance not only makes NC near impossible but it plays games with your head and hinders the road to peace.

  50. Tinkerbell says:

    Magdalena. You expressed those thoughts very well, and in a non-abrasive fashion,( something I have not acquired the ability to do) but, I totally agree. Thanks for sharing that.

  51. Monica says:

    I actually saw your post yesterday but wasn’t quite ready to read it. I felt it would be a reminder of my “Mistake”. However, today, I was feeling kind of bummed out and missing the affection I once had.However, I did think back and remember why I broke it off. He always left me feeling empty and sad. Kind of like a broken dish you no longer use but never throw out.I did have some happy momemts but blaming him wasn’t going to change anything so I changed.I then realized omg, its been 3 months since I last thought of him.I was estatic…that he wasn’t lingering in my mind anymore.The only reason he came to mind was because he was the last guy but not my last love. I am so hopefully and trust in my journey.The next relationship I’m in will be worthy of my time

  52. Wise ol owl says:

    Natalie, your words ring so true. “Putting your hand back into the fire” is exactly what we do when we contact someone who is not in touch with us. For however long you were together, or if they just disappeared, it makes no difference. We will never know the reasons for sure, so best to leave things alone. I reached out a couple times, and he emailed back immediately–was cordial, nice, but bottom line–it aint going anywhere, so why keep burning your hand? My reaching out was months ago, and I have to say, I feel better about me. I think often these men feel, “she’ll get in touch again, she’ll be back round.” It feels so damn good to just go “poof” and be gone, that is, if you can just stick with it! As far as your other words, “having your own back”–that’s just priceless! We get so lost in these men, it’s easy to go against yourself and that’s a mistake I won’t be making again! Thank you SO much for these valuable reminders, you’re a god-send!!

    • Robin says:

      I might add that digging deeper and actually finding out the reason why is also like constantly burning your hand! Sometimes the reason is exactly what you feared it would be, or it isn’t what you wanted. That’s why it can be good to trust your instincts, because they’re almost always dead on about a situation even if you can’t explain why.

  53. finallygettingit69 says:

    @Paris, even with growth and learning from BR we all have setbacks. Forgive yourself and see it for what it is…. a bump in the road. You are on your way. Try to let it go (it’s hard, I know).

    Hugs. :)

  54. finallygettingit69 says:

    Thank you Natasha for sharing your experience with us fellow BR readers. I am sorry you got burned. I can assure you that the ONLY reason I knew that I needed to opt out is because of Nat and BR. Unfortunately, I am a recovering fallback girl but am learning to bail sooner and to heed the red flags much sooner than I have in the past. I am an EUM magnet, and have taken this relationship falling apart as a clue that I don’t end up in these unavailable relationships by chance, it’s because I haven’t done the hard work on me. But I am back in therapy and trying to stop running from my pain and building myself up and learning to love myself and validate myself outside of relationships with men. I have a long way to go but like many of us, need to pause every once in awhile and appreciate how far I have come.

  55. Jennifer Tiffany says:

    Willpower. Wow. Today I ate a chocolate chip cookie, two peanut butter candies, two sugar cookies, a bite of six different cupcakes and a milkshake. And hated every bite, every bit of it. What the fuck? It’s like in Scar Face when Robert de Niro’s face falls slumped down in mounds of cocaine. That’s me. Except it’s not cocaine, it’s baked goods. Ice creams and cakes.I wish there were a subtype of Fallback girl called the Binger. And Natalie would write about her and how she avoids life by eating herself to death. Or the Sabotager and how she, ah Natalie wrote a blog post on this…Choppers. That’s me I chop everything and anything good out of my life. To add to all the crap I ate, I did eat a couple fish tacos. I love them, they are my favorite. It’s all I truly wanted in the first place, but I crave for sugar though I hate it, just as I crave these unavailable men. But I won’t be going back to the fish taco venue. The wait was long and I made a scene like an impatient asshole. I AM A COMPLETE FUCKING MESS. I hate myself right now. I am just so angry at me for being a bafoon and fucking my days up. It’s like groundhog day every fucking day. Get up. Binge. Fuck up my day. Sleep a bit. Get up, binge and fuck up yet another of my days. I. just. can’t. seem. to. get. it. right. I am my own worst enemy. And I don’t know what to do.

    • grace says:

      You could try a book called eating less available on amazon. Book has good things to say about self esteem and choices, it,s not about dieting which we know doesn’t work.
      Author has a website too.

      • Soozie says:

        I second Grace’s advice. She mentioned Eating Less once before and I bought it and read it. I am a lifelong compulsive eater and reading that book changed my life. Thanks Grace

        • Jennifer Tiffany says:

          @ Soozie,
          Thanks for the recommendation. I think it’d be wise for me to order. So I will. Thanks for the help!

      • Jennifer Tiffany says:

        Thank you. I will certainly check it out :)

    • Anon says:

      Yikes! Read a couple of psychology books on overeating, (emotional eating) then read Kat James (former repeat bulimic) The Truth About Beauty. She is a nutrition researcher, who was carbohydrate addicted as well. She is ‘pill free’ for body cleanse purity reasons, but you might want to look at antidepressants to help you through? Strategize your problems and your avoidance of them one by one, make a game plan to tackle them so they are not floating around in your psyche causing you to harm yourself.

    • MSA says:

      Jennifer Tiffany, Stop beating yourself up over it. Who doesn’t crave some food and sweets? I bet if you make a poll here, you’ll get a 99.99% consensus we’re all there one day or another. It passes, maybe your body needed it… Instead of wailing over it, go for a run or workout, dance it out. Other than the burnt calories, dancing and working out provide your body with the “happy chemicals” similar to those provided by sweets, especially chocolate. Sometimes, I’d get out of the gym, buy a bar of chocolate and gobble it. The world is not all red carpet models who go on the 7 almonds diet for months. I’d rather not eat perfectly and maintain the human weak part than be all plastic, even in my routine, diet and emotions.
      Chin up and tomorrow’s a new day :) Re-read the previous post on self blame. You’re one of the influential BRers, and I bet if you saw your post, you’d kick your own a** for the amount of self blame and judgment. Guess we’re all our own worst enemies

      • Jennifer Tiffany says:


        You are right, I do need to stop beating myself up over this. I reread my post and thought, “Dang, I’d be concerned reading that had I not written it too.” So much self loathing. Today is better. I realized how I loved my ex when he was grumpy, infantile, intoxicated, mean, cruel, overly critical, bingeing himself. And yet, I crucify me when I eff up??!! Something just isn’t right here. I need to practice the same level and more if at all possible of love and understanding for myself than I did with the jerk I was with.

    • Magnolia says:

      JenniferTiff, I get it. I am sitting here eating my second Starbucks pastry after eating two hamburgers; last night I ordered two large pizzas and ate a whole one. This after a month of no meat, wheat, sugar or dairy. I’m definitely on a binge, though I tried to really look at my cutting sugar/white flour/meat as a new lifestyle, not a diet.

      And yet I find myself having these two-pastry-three-sandwich meals and wanting to puke afterward, tiny echoes of having been bulimic and furious in my late teens/early twenties.

      I’ve been on this cycle a few times, so I’m not *totally* beating myself up, but I do want to know wtf is going on. I even started a blog about my new eating, only to stop posting when I started downsliding. I thought I was *ready* to be good to myself.

      I was so psyched to have submitted my dissertation and finished it without the accompanying pig-out. But I hit send on an important job application last night after the seventh slice of pizza (veggie at least, ha!).

      I do feel that completing the job application and having to ask for references again was emotionally hard; I never feel as though I have cultivated the right relationships. People said no to giving me letters and my frenemy colleague suggested I’d be lucky to get an interview.

      Hmm, just thinking about how my father always pushed me to compare myself to Olympic athletes but then told me I didn’t have the stamina or commitment. I don’t want to admit that maybe I don’t … and the eating clean just seems like one more thread of trying to get it right … and the crappy food is always there, convenient and tasty and I get to the point of not being able to resist …

      Anyway, you’re not alone in feeling like food issues and relationship issues mirror each other, Jennifer Tiffany! Onward.

      • jewells says:

        Unfortunately the food thing is a by product of kicking an EUM AC to the curb. We either stop eating or we eat everything in sight. I have always had food issues, always been slightly overweight, even when I did martial arts, I would eat MORE to always seem to maintain that slightly overweight status. The weirdest thing…when the EUM break came, it was the most severe thing I’d gone through, I all but STOPPED eating, lost 15 lbs, and haven’t gained it back. I think on some level, it was the final straw on all fronts…no more EUM’s, no more binge eating instead of feeling my feelings. Though, I still drink beer and smoke ciggies…so I’m not saying I’m perfect now by any means :) One step at a time

        • Jennifer Tiffany says:


          I have really had to face my addiction to food since I don’t have so much drama in my life since the ex left. I had no idea it was this bad. I have been in utter La La land, thinking I could just diet it away. Or if I had enough willpower. For me it isn’t willpower that keeps me going back to the binge. It’s not loving myself to figure out how to do better and not going through the uncomfortable to get to the healthy. But, yes, as you say, one step at a time 😉

      • Jennifer Tiffany says:


        Thanks, it helps to not feel alone (not that I would wish this on anyone and certainly not a fellow BRer). But sometimes it can feel as though I am the only woman who eats eight donuts in a sitting because she’s lonely. For me it’s really key in soothing my emotions with affirming, kind thoughts. But man is it tough when, for near twenty eight years, your instinctual reaction is to reach for cookies or pizza. It’s really about catching myself and trying to do better, even though it’s soooo uncomfortable because it is utterly foreign for me to soothe in ways that don’t involve food.

    • Tracy says:

      I had two cookies, a cupcake, some chips (crisps to you Brits), cheese and crackers, and my daughter just went out and picked up some Mexican food for dinner. And I’m drinking wine. Carbo-rama. But I did run for 1/2 hour, I work with kids K-5 all day…it’s all about balance. Some days I carbo-load and I don’t even exercise. It’s just what I’m drawn to when tired, bored, and stressed. But I’ve learned at the ripe old age of 49 that one day off the wagon won’t kill me, won’t make me like a whale and other horrible things I say to myself. Or used to say. Don’t be so hard on yourself!

      • Jennifer Tiffany says:


        You mentioned balance. That is something I so resist against. I don’t know what it is with me. I am terrified of balance. So I starve myself or binge. I get involved with men who are all about me (hot) and then all but disappear (cold).

    • Emerldeyez says:

      I started going to OA years ago, and I can start anytime during the day to eat healthier that day. I started to journal what I was feeling every time I wanted to binge. I may have still binged but I prolonged it. I also will do something before I binged to see if I could delay or stop the urge. And eventually they both worked. I learned I did have control over the urge BEFORE i started to binge. And that was the key. It’s not about the food, it’s about what’s going on inside. If I want to binge today, I might, but most times, I have the inner voice that says to me, “What’s really going on here?” So I will write, go for a walk, call somebody. And the urge usually passes, and I feel empowered and good about myself. MY ex narc AC, would say I looked scrawny, etc, and I would call him out on it, because he was out of control with his eating and weight. But my appearance was real important to him, to the point of telling me how to dress ( sexier than I ever felt appropriate, which I refused to do ) he was probably 25-50 lbs overweight and had his own eating problems. I also know I am vulnerable right now, so I am using a LOSE IT app on my phone to write down what I am eating today. SO I know I am eating healthy, for my body, and if I want to eat the junk, (fat, sugar, white flour are my binge foods) I know I am eating for emotional reasons, And I keep myself accountable. I know it is trying to fill a hole in my soul. And years of being in recovery using the 12 steps, I’ve learned to turn to my Higher Power to help relief me of the urge. It’s worked for me. And I’m doing the same thing with the ex. asking to remove the urge to contact him, etc, etc. Just sharing what has worked for me.

      • Jennifer Tiffany says:


        Thank you for sharing. I am using external means to solve internal problems. It doesn’t work that way so I keep having the same problems as they never get solved. I have found a food journal does help. Also I binge on the same foods as you mentioned. Interesting.

    • dancingqueen says:


      Hey, hang in there. I went through the bulimic/anorexic/over exercise drama for years. What finally helped me was; one, really good vitamins ( you are probably very b deficiant) and two, writing down what my feelings were, when I wanted to binge. For me, I used it to stuff down anger. I started the eating disorder in my teens, because I was so mad about being abused, both sexually and physically/emotionally. Vomiting and running until I could not think straight from exhaustion, was a way to deplete my anger…
      JT you really want to deal with this head on. Get a therapist that specializes in eating disorders because it can take a HUGE toll on your body. I got stress fractures from amenorhea that still ach today and I almost died from a fainting spell of low blood sugar. It is not something to toy with. You will not be able to believe how much better you will feel with some nutrients in your body and maybe more natural sweets: I love dates and I eat greek yogurt with agave a lot. Go easy on yourself and make yourself a nice healthy warm salad with some greens and veggies, some tamari and some beans and such…and then if you want have a few cookies but don’t deprive yourself of healthy food to just eat junk. Fish tacos are not horrible, if you get some veggies with them and have corn tortillas, they are pretty healthy. PLEASE get some vitamens a.s.a.p.

      • Jennifer Tiffany says:


        You are right. This is no joke. These things take such a toll on the body. I am wracked. It’s hard for me to care anymore. I feel as though I’ve lost the battle with the bingeing. The bingeing is the disorder that’s at the forefront these days. I have gone to organic food retreats, read countless books on healthy eating, know all about processed foods vs healthy, whole foods. I try listening to my body. But I’m clueless as what to eat. When I start eating well, I get cravings for junk that I feel must be how a heroin junkie fiends for the drug. It’s funny, it’s comparable to the magnetic pull toward my unavailable ex. I swear, it feels as if my cravings are taking over every inch of my body and then I loose all control. I obsess over food, interestingly enough, the way I did over the EU ex. I just have so little else going on in my life because I’m scared of the outside world, so that so much room is left for my eating disorder. I’m a survivor of incest, rape and repeated sexual assault. I know there is a connection between these things and my self hate. Also, my anorexia/bingeing started not too long after my mother’s suicide when I was twelve.

  56. Ownthetruth59 says:

    Hi to all of you. I have been where you are. As I said in a previous post,that NC is the hardest thing you will do. I can relate to all of the blocking and unblocking, to going up and down the merry go round. I remember a girlfriend saying to me that one day there will be a day, that you will not remember the last thing he said, or a tex or the need to talk about it. She was right. 6 months later, and I am truly doing things for me. It is normal to not feel that you belong…anywhere. When will the pain end? The longing for them? The not wanting to know about a new interest? Or the bargaining. The bargaining I realized was with the devil! I allowed him in, and he kept the ball rolling because I allowed it. I have started dating, and had my first real, Red flag that I actually caught onto. I met a gentleman much older than me on a dating sight. He swept me off of my feet. We had a great time the last 2 months. He took me on a short vacation to a beach. It was a beautiful resort, and we had an amazing time. He loves pictures, so we took quite a few of us in certain places around the resort. I found out that I was the 3rd person that he had taken to this place. I found out that the love of his life, that dumped him because he could not be trusted, and a control freak…took him there!! He was engaged to another women 2 years ago, and took her there also! The engagement was broke off then I stepped into the picture…I took my time..with this man, because I really was comfortable with him. I could be looking way over the bar here…but I think there is something really wrong with this picture…or should I say pictures!!! I was told by a mutual friend (I met through him) that I was the third one to go there with him. I was speechless. I ended the relationship and have not looked back. He did not understand, and tried to really explain to me that it is just a special place to him…and he loves it there. Special for WHO? If I sound unreasonable I am sorry. I figured that it was easier to empty the bin then continue down a path of constant wonder. He tried to contact me every way possible. I blocked him from every possibility of getting in touch with me. He was relentless. I have been through worse…and the relationship previously has been the worst pain of loss that I have ever gone through. I worry that I have become numb…I got alot of validation that this was the right thing to do…I hope so…

    • Kit-Kat says:

      Ownthetruth59..Congrats to you for seeing the red flags early & flushing.
      Why continue down that path when u know what the outcome w/be. I hope if and when I am ready to date I will be as cautious as you & flush early. Thank god for BR & Nat to show us the way to finding a fulfilling,mutual relationship built on love,care,respect & trust. Onward & upward to all…

      • Ownthetruth59 says:

        Thanks Kit Kat…I struggle with the outcome of this. Thinking that I overreacted, as I am used to looking the other way. He was a great guy..but there was something not right to me anyway, with taking 3 women to a Resort and taking pictures in the same area’s. I have my days, where I am second guessing my choice. As you said,with the help of this site and Natalie’s knowledge that she so willingly passes onto us…I would not have had the guts to do it…Flush Away!! Thank you for your response!~

    • Tracy says:

      Ownthetruth59…wow! That must have blown your mind when you found out he’d been there a few times before. I had an AC/EUM who only thought the ‘good’ places to go were places he had been with his ex-wife. That got really tiresome…I mean, how could there possibly be any memories created with me when what he was trying to do was recreate whatever he had with his ex.

      Congrats for flushing in time!

      • Ownthetruth59 says:

        Thank you Tracy~Yes you are correct. We all have our special places..and the right to go there when we want> For me is about being played. I feel as you do, how are there any positives in developing a new relationship when you are trying to mirror what you had with someone else. There is this little tug in me though…(did I overreact??) I dont want to be that person, that looks at everything..I think this was for me a deal breaker!~

  57. courtney says:

    In two days, I will be one month NC. I’ve had many happy moments while single, met new people, networked, am enjoying myself and learning more about myself.

    Yet I still have much more work to do. I’ve worked a lot with my grief and rage, but it still resurfaces every week. I still struggle with the compulsion to check my “ex’s” (or pevious eum’s) dating profile to see if he’s still dating that girl he gave the “precious” exclusivity to. Pathetic, right? But I haven’t given in and hopefully, I won’t. I remember how awful it felt the last time I gave into temptation and he told me how “happy” he was.

    It’s odd how nobodies affect us. This person wasn’t even in my life for more than a month, and the words/actions are still remembered almost every day in some way or the other. I have to fight my own mind constantly.

    But, I am doing it, I am growing stronger, I am accomplishing milestones, I am overcoming the battles I was always meant to fight but kept delaying. I am facing all the grief and all the pain from past relationships (and admittedly still struggling from the past emotional abuse), de-victimizing myself and making myself the heroine of my own story. That’s got to count for something! :)

    As a supplement to BR, I highly recommend Greg Bernhardt’s book, “It’s Called a Breakup because it’s Broken.” It’s much better than He’s Just Not that Into You (less simplified) and has a lot of insight similar to BR and also fun to read. Gave me a lot of laughs!

    • Teddie says:

      This one, yes, ha, ha, hilarious, better than “He’s just not that into you”!. Looking back, how things that used to seem epochal, start to seem ridiculous, and with the wisdom of hindsight, one starts to poke fun at oneself:

  58. Lilia says:

    The thing that stresses me out after many months of NC is this: what should I do if I run into him on the street? Or what do I do if I suddenly get one of his IMs?
    Be polite but distant? Ignore and act as if he´s air? Kick him in the groin?
    I´ve been over the options once and again, until I finally imagined myself saying the only thing that feels right, namely Listen EUM, I can´t do this. I can´t play games and act as if nothing happened. So goodbye.

    I feel those words really honor my emotions and are an affirmation of myself. Of course I may never see or hear from him again, but having those words ready makes me feel like I´m taking care of myself.

  59. espresso says:

    Not that I am an expert on this but I do feel I have made some decisions in the past months that have kept my focus on ME rather than my ex. I haven’t succeeded all the time as can be seen by some of my posts but I am conscious that I need to keep redirecting my energy away from the failed relationship, rehashing it, blaming myself, thinking about what was wrong with him and me etc. etc. I am a woman who thinks and talks too much and power pointed the relationship to death and of course I have a lot of PAIN and ANGER left that can never be expressed. But in good BR terms I have tried to commit myself to what I call loosely “going forward” So everyday and especially days when I feel my direction is getting muddy I try to engage in something that directs my energy elsewhere. I contact a new or old friend, send an email to an interesting person, absorb myself in my work, go out – even alone to a movie, despite work pressures am taking an academic language course at university three times a week, bought a lot of new clothes and especially great fancy French lingerie which I never did before (just for ME to appreciate), work out a lot at the gym, lost 25 pounds and gained a lot of muscle, got a hot recommendation for a hair stylist and did it, got some professional pictures taken last year which make me look casual but really good (just for me),started a new blog, travel whenever I can for business, and if I can find a cheap rate I go to a fancy hotel for an evening (by myself). Oh and the spa…(I get lots of gift cert from family). I read BR reclaim like a maniac every day and have bought a nice little stack of erotica for myself. Plus a visit to the Romance Store – things I would have never done before because I had no sexual interest in my ex for a long time because he was so disengaged and a boy type person. So anyway, I am proud of all that…it ALL has helped and a lot of it has been fun. Do I wish there was a new man to share this with? I did six months ago but now I am just as happy working out stuff by myself for now. I don’t think I would be a very good “partner to anybody” and although I thought I “could” have had a fling..I see now that would have been so destructive for me. Some days are gold and some are mud. It takes a long time to process a long relationship and some days I feel I am doing really well and other days not.

    • Emerldeyez says:

      You are truly on the path! Good for you and all your hard work! You inspired me today!

  60. shyner says:

    Now I’m worrying he’s going to do something stupid because he’s mentioned it before. I have still heard nothing from him. This is freaking me out.

    • yoghurt says:


      I’m speaking here as someone who has been involved with more than one man on a self-destructive path involving serious suicide attempts, substance abuse, drink-driving etc. So I know where you’re at, although I wish I’d listened when I got this advice.

      Whatever path they might be on, it is NOT YOUR WORRY OR YOUR BUSINESS. If he wanted your help he would be there getting it, not pushing you away and treating you so badly. Even when people’s decisions are stupid, genuinely caring about them means respecting them enough to let them make their own choices.

      It’s good to be kind and to help people in trouble. However, it isn’t good (or kind or helpful) if all you’re doing is enabling them in behaving in a cruddy way that is probably bad for their soul and their mh as well as hurtful for you. You can support, IF they let you (which he isn’t doing), but you can’t save. No-one can.

      IF he’s hell-bent on doing something stupid then there’s nothing you can do about it – it’s his choice and his responsibility. DON’T let your brain trick you into thinking that it’s a reasonable excuse for running after him or sending many freaked-out, your-affairs-are-the-centre-of-my-universe texts. Either way they probably won’t help him.

    • Kit-Kat says:

      shyner… SO WHAT if he does something stupid. U need to stop worrying about him & his life & concentrate on YOURS. Your focus is totally on the wrong person here. Until you do that you are going to be stuck in quick sand and its exhausting & futile…

      • beth d says:

        Pleaseee My ex got me on that “I want to die” thing more than once. Yea so we will be there for them and die a slow death. It’s another way to take the focus off you and on to them. Mine even played the cancer card once. He had a little mole on his face.

        • Shyner says:

          Oh, god. I feel like a right loon – all that texting, and the phonecalls. I’ve been driving myself round the bend trying to figure it all out, wondering what he’s doing/thinking. We used to talk to each other all the time and send each other little messages. It’s a bit of shock to go from that to nothing. He’s back next week. Dreading it, really. Beth – your reply is eerily familiar and I think your right about the focus thing.

          • beth d says:

            Hold strong I had the frequent contact thing too with my ex and it really was so hard to stop and so much easier to break to avoid the pain. Our relationship was wonderful at times so I had to wipe out that part and think about the crazymaking that occurred. The roller coaster and highs and lows will always keep you in a tailspin and on an uneven keel. I finally have peace but I do have my moments of feeling bad because I know I can’t be friends with him which he wants badly but I know I have to love me and find peace in my life.

            • Shyner says:

              Still nothing from him. I remembered last night that he had said to me, ‘I can’t take any more criticism, justified or not, it makes me want to find a cliff and jump off it’. I’m not sleeping well as a result of that comment.

              • jewells says:

                Shyner, he can’t talk the ‘critism’ because he can’t take on board that his behavour is atrocious so all he hears is like the teacher on peanuts ‘wha wha wha wha wha’, it all sounds to him like you’re picking on him as he hasn’t got the faculty to process what you are saying to be able to do anything about it. Either that or it’s a ploy to get you to ‘lay off’ cause he doesn’t care or want to know. Either way, he’s no good for you, best leave him to his own devices and find a man that is better behaved.

              • beth d says:

                Another manipulation. They play the pity card every chance they get especially when you call out their bs and show your disgust. Please think of you right now and the fact that things will get better for you but only if you stick with NC. I do know how hard it is but the longer you go the clearer the picture will be and the sooner you will be on the path of happiness and peace.

                • Shyner says:

                  He said it during my trip out to visit him. Today, I texted his colleague, though he won’t like it, to ask if he is ok because I have still heard nothing. That’s just the way I roll, I’m afraid. I did that because I can’t get past why he’s had nothing to say about me getting rid of his stuff. He has previously said that if I got rid of it, he would get the police onto me. Nice! I would only ever put it in storage, though, and I am very surprised he’s not making sure that’s what I’m doing. I read a big article on NPD yesterday and it was literally all true. Madness.

                  • Shyner says:

                    I am absolutely riddled with uncertainties. I have been quite insecure in my relationship with him and now oscillate between whether I have brought all this on myself or whether he has fuelled my insecurities. I also wonder if they weren’t insecurities, that they were actually my sensible head screaming, ‘get out of this!’. It’s a horrible space to be in, and not one that I was expecting. I had asked him on a number of occasions if he wanted to be with me, and he always said yes but not very nicely. He often put the phone down on me. Also, I look dreadful – very tired.

                  • beth d says:

                    I understand checking up on them. When they are making like you have them suicidal which my ex has done to me you can’t help but worry because you are a good person and no matter how much you want out of the relationship insanity you don’t want anything bad to happen to them. I can’t say that I haven’t checked his kids social media accounts just to make sure he is ok. I hate when I do it but I have that same way of rolling. My new thing is to NOT check up anymore because it keeps me engaged and in the web and I realize that he is fine and I have worried more than I should in this relationship over nothing.

                    • Shyner says:

                      Blimey. This is a right laugh, isn’t it. There’s just a litany of things that scream RED FLAG ALERT! and I am still finding it hard to believe I let this happen in my life. The two things I brought to the table were insecurity (but when someone starts asking you on the phone if they should wear their tight swimming shorts on the beach/tells you that the woman on the beach that morning seemed to understand when he told her he wasn’t on the pull, it just looks like it because he’s a single man/’has to go now because I’m meeting a woman’, etc etc and that I have texted and phoned too much this week- I think I can forgive myself those, too.

                    • Shyner says:

                      It’s time I stopped beating myself up. he’s been living in my house and all his bloody stuff’s here. It’s not that he was someone I hooked up with once a week.

    • MSA says:


      I’ve been following your posts and other replies’ and you got some that hit the nail on the head.

      Are you worried he might do something stupid TO YOU??!! If that’s the case, then seek help immediately. Idk if you can file the report that you got threatened, but do whatever it takes to keep YOU safe.

      If by stupid you mean, something like suicide, then I believe others said more than enough. He did enough destruction to you. He feels as if he’s losing his grip on you. whether it’s one more of his games to get you back in his trap, or he means it, it’s not your responsibility, he DRAINED you!! Enough is ENOUGH! He’s a grown man (supposedly :\ ) but oh well, his life, his decisions. you just STAY SAFE and kick him out ASAP

      • Sunshine says:

        Oh, Discarded, so sorry this has happened to you. Believe me, I know how you feel because I’ve been there too. It hurts like hell, but you need to take time for yourself and grieve the loss. Because it will get better. And remember: you deserve so much better! Hang in there xxx

        • Sunshine says:

          Oh, sorry, I hit the wrong Reply. This was intended for Discarded:)

          • Shyner says:

            I guess one positive is that there’s no kids and the relationship was only 4 months in. I really need to stop thinking it’s my fault, driving him away with my insecurities. He was already behaving bizarrely and badly.

    • Shyner says:

      His friend got in touch with me and apparently he’s having a lovely time on the beach with all of his new friends. So, I pasted my message to AC back to him (just in case AC didn’t see it) and told him to tell AC to fuck off from me. Not exactly laden with dignity but seemed appropriate, somehow. I hope I never see or speak to him again.

      • Shyner, I responded to a comment on another post that I wanted to add here so that you could see this.


        I just want to add something here because this week I’ve had to say to several students on the self-esteem course, the same thing I’m going to say to you Lacy, Shyner and anyone else in these chaotic ‘relationships’:

        Even Jerry Springer / Maury / the guy from Cheaters / Jeremy Kyle would balk at these tales. The question remains as to why the unacceptable has become acceptable and why there is lack of recognition converted into actions that translates into getting out of this chaos? This (the comments and analysing their behaviour) is the talk of someone who is trying to make sense out of crap. Crap is crap. You see someone behave in dodgy ways that reveals lack of character – what is there to analyse unless you’re looking for reasons to blame you or trying to find a way to continue?

        Why do these relationships feel like ‘home’ to you that you can describe the assholery that these ‘men’ pull and not think ‘Hold up a frickin second here – this is some crazy shit!’

        I know that none of you are crack addicts so why are you acting like these men are your last meal and like you have no options? These men are disgusting with their free range penises going around sexing and making babies they can’t even take care of.

        *This*, all this crazy Jerry Springer type relationship stuff is not love or even a relationship. There comes a point where you need to recall every ounce of pride you have – *this* is that time.

        Also Shyner, take that mans shit, box it up and deposit it at his friends house or a place he frequents. You are not Big Yellow Storage and you’re not in a remake of New Jack City. Do not keep this mans stuff so that you can continue in this drama. Get that mans shit out of your house and keep him out of your life and get the help you need to keep it that way. How this hobo excuse of a man who gives genuine people who have hit hard times and ended up homeless a bad name, ever managed to cross your threshold is something that you can address *without* him. He survived on this earth for X amount of years before you came into his life, believe me when I say that he will be able to manage without you.

        *Need* and *dependency* are not love.

        You can give everything to a person so that they depend on you and they supposedly cannot leave (or ‘should’ no reason to) but not only is this unhealthy, but it’s a waste, especially when you do this for assclowns.

        • beth d says:

          Amen Natalie!!!

          • Shyner says:

            Still nothing from him. At least he will have got the message by now. He doesn’t have any friends that I can drop his stuff at. There’s shitloads of it – massive TV,PS3, speakers, tonnes of clothes, personal stuff, stereo, books…I looked into a storage place and it would cost me £60, which I don’t have. Shove it all in my shed and arrange a time with him to collect it? I don’t really have any other options. Friends wouldn’t have the room for it all. There’s a lot. I am looking forward to having nothing further to do with him. It weirds me out that to think that he might be all sorted now, and all his weird, mad, self-destructive, narcissistic traits are going to disappear, he will be wonderful and his new girlfriend and he will be very happy. I took a lot of shit from him, and listened to a lot of stuff.

            • Shyner says:

              I literally do not understand how it came to this. Yes, I was insecure and he got fed up with reassuring me. But I think he fed those insecurities in ways that I didn’t recognise at the time. I have come out of this feeling violated in some ways, used in others and overall, my sense of self-care, self-esteem and certainties have all been smashed up. How can someone continually say how much they care for you, want to get a place with you, etc etc drop me like a stone. Not even bother replying to me trying to organise their belongings for them. Am I THAT much of a nobody. Jesus, why the fuck do I even care??!!

              • Shyner says:

                I have asked the man he is away with to text me the details of the lock-up the rest of his stuff is in, seeing as that man paid for all of that for AM. No doubt he will be angry with me for involving him again but I don’t think I’m left with any other choice seeing as AM has blanked me. I feel dreadful.

  61. Discarded says:

    My ex left me out of nowhere, he chased me non stop to get me back (10yr history) Then suddenly when I give in and commit. He gets a new job and within 2 weeks I’m dumped and discarded like I meant nothing. He said I was the one, and only wanted me, and wanted us to be together, but the sudden change was so quick, 2 weeks!!! Then suddenly I have to ‘let go’ he couldn’t even wish me the best or anything. All I got was to move on and take care, how can someone who is supposed to be in love with you do that? Haven’t heard a peep since either, except my attempt for closure. He couldn’t care less, so nasty and harsh

    • MSA says:

      Ouch!!! I know the feeling of being tossed from Heaven to Hell… You’ll just need time to grieve, cope, and since it was sudden and he chased you and due to the length of your history together, my guess is that the grief process will probably take a while. Hang in there! Keep working on yourself.. I know the pain is too much to handle, but you can do it. There’s no magic wand or click of fingers. The only way out is through..
      Some men’s actions can’t be explained and I find this one particularly puzzling. ((((hugs to you))))

    • beth d says:

      Cause he is probably a malignant narcissist. They all eventually do the devalue and discard routine. You are left shocked and reeling. Hang in there because you most likely will hear from him again and you will need to be strong next time.

      • Discarded says:

        Wont hear off him again, had his year and half fun and gone!! Been over 2weeks now, so no chance.
        So much for love, couldn’t of meant that much if could walk away that easy

        • Tracy says:

          I was with a narcissist AC for a year and a half and the weekend before he dumped me he acted like I walked on water, he wanted me around more than ever…Four days later, he couldn’t be in a relationship anymore (he wanted to get it on with a woman in his AA group…she was a pinhead). Never heard A WORD from him until 9 months later when he came crawling back. But in the meantime, I got a lot of strength and realized that I let this guy slide on A LOT of shit and being without him was liberating! Anyone who can dump someone so quickly and so completely is NOT, I repeat NOT a good person and does NOT deserve ANYTHING from you.

        • beth d says:

          2 weeks is nothing. They come back after months especially when they are on a downward spiral which will happen. They tend to repeat the same mistakes and then try to go back to who they think will forgive them.

          • Discarded says:

            It was very final, his work is his ‘other half’ now (his words). Me? Thrown out with the rubbish. Just think all that time and money for what? Think hes def narcissistic. We had fights as you do, but this time. Didn’t want to know. Didn’t even want to give me closure, it hurts. But I deserve better than that

          • Victorious says:

            yes, I just had one come back to me ( or try to) after THIRTY years. Idealize, devalue, discard. Idealize, devalue, discard. They know no other way. They are DANGEROUS. they are NOT NORMAL. Please stay away.

            • Discarded says:

              No they are sure not, idealize, devalue and discard. That IS what happened, just didn’t realize to the end :(
              Least saw him for what he was in the end, just numb from it all. But I shall get on with my life and hopefully meet someone who does really love me. He tried to make out he did love me, but that’s what happening and its over. Nice eh

  62. Tinkerbell says:

    WOW, Espresso! You are doing great. And, you mean to tell me you are still not “there” yet? I am truly ecstatic over how much you are doing for YOU. Today is Feb 1. I am doing very well, but I need to do better. I’m thankful that I don’t even recognize who I was when I was in a torrid affair with an MM. It too sooo long, twice as long, to get over him as the time I spent with him. But I stuck it out. I get very frustrated when some us us throw around the term NC when what they is they’re taking a break, but still agreeable to getting back with him and even voluntarily contacting him. What kind of NC is that? NC is a VERY SPECIFIC state that is special and we need to have more respect when we call it that. The most distinguishing factor is that it OVER. It’s not temporary, you don’t leave but still every waking moment is consumed by thoughts of him. I’ll never forget how CC described it as regurgitating all of the sh*t. It’s a total cleansing of the mind. it takes time but, instead of being preoccupied with him and his life each and every day, you are consciously working on YOU. I am so happy to see that more of us are mentioning no only the great benefits of reading BR daily, Natalie’s books and e-courses, but also seeing a therapist with whom you can let it all out. Generally when you’re in a relationship that is secret like an affair, or one in which you yourself know is not good for you, you’re going to keep a lot to yourself. You gotta talk to somebody and get it out. I’m also trying to establish a closer walk with the Lord. He DOES answer prayers. Oh well, I guess I’ll stop rambling now. I just woke up and always start my day reading BR and all this stuff came into to mind inspired by Espresso. Thank you, Hon, for your words. You are such a role model.

  63. Tinkerbell says:

    Xcuse all the typos. Typing too fast and haven’t even had my coffee yet, LOL!

  64. Bob72 says:

    This is one of the best posts I have ever read on here.. and there are alot of very good, very accurate ones. If you are having trouble getting over someone, do yourself a favor and print this out, and read it every time you feel like you are about to go over the edge of sellling yourself out and making contact or even checking up on them.

    I’ve been there, this is absolutely how I felt and what I did too at first.. and ultimately why I finally found the strength to leave it alone and move on. I didnt think I would ever survive this… but even though it still hurts sometimes, I still miss her and even feel like I still love her, I know I am going to be ok and that eventually I will be totally over this.. I see the light at the end of the tunnel finally, and I know how to get there.

    On top of that I am extremely proud of myself even when I am feeling bad about things at the same time… because I was able to walk away, and didn’t make nearly the ass of myself or gave away my self esteem doing pitiful or regretful things as I’ve done in past breakups to try to keep the relationship alove or because I was afraid of letting go. I still lost her, but didn’t lose my dignity. I will get over this and someday the pain will be totally gone – and I did it without compromising myself and doing anything I might regret for many years to come… I am very empowered by that.

    If I can get through this any of you can… keep this awesome post handy its strength in paragraph form… one foot in front of the other and “Fake it Until You Make it”… and you will look up one day and be through the worst of it, and ready for something better to come into your life.

    • Magnolia says:

      Bob, are you still seeing that new woman while posting about not yet being totally over your ex?

      • amanda says:

        If he is, let’s be compassionate. We don’t know the full story. Perhaps, like many of us, he has been trying to be friends with the ex while keeping his heart open to new, real relationships. We’ve read the BR columns about the fallacy of such friendship, but that doesn’t mean that we act perfectly. We all know that its best to totally heal from the kind of damaging relationship that brings us to BR before jumping into the next relationship, but it can be hard to see that clearly in the moment, especially if you’re trying to be friends with your ex and are trying to be compassionate towards him/her. It sounds, in practice, that while Bob deeply misses his ex, he isn’t acting in any way that would be a betrayal to his new partner. He just said that he’s proud of acting in as dignified a way as he can. I am sure that Bob knows that he owes it to his new partner to let go of these feelings for his ex in order to be truly emotionally available.

    • Allie says:

      Well said Bob.
      I also had my own bad experiences and seemed so hard and impossible to get over them but now I only regret that i didn’t find baggage reclaim before.

      It is not easy but our dignity it’s worth the effort to move on.

    • amanda says:

      I’m glad to read this. I just posted about my struggle below… thank you for your words of encouragement to the rest of us here at BR. You are so courageous. You know in your heart that you are doing the right thing, even when doubts still nibble away at you, even when you still have strong feelings for this person. Your courage emboldens me today. I know that I keep up NC today. One day at a time.

  65. moving forward says:

    My ex broke up with me this past April I had no contact for a few months and than spoke to him thinking we could be friends only to realize that you can’t be friends with someone that doesn’t know how to be a friend. I went again no contact for a few months only to find out a few weeks ago that he is “seeing” a 17 year old girl and he is 38. Finding this out made me revert back to the anxious, upset female I was when he first bropke up with me. Of course he denies dating or seeing a 17 year old he says they are just good friends. I feel like I am broken all over again and any forward movement I had accomplished is completely gone due to finding this out. I am 33 and I know it should make me feel better that him dating a 17 year old just proves how much of a loser he is and how much better off I am, but all i think about is how we were together for 6 years and how didnt i see the fact that i was with someone so disqusting. i feel as though i will never be able to trust another man again after finding all this out. someone said to me so if he was dating someone of age it would be okay- yes it would i am not upset he moved on i am upset that he is such a loser that he would even entertain the thought of seeing a 17 year old.

    • Little Star says:

      Moving, I am sorry you feeling this way! IF I knew that my ex dating a 17 years old child, I would lose respect straight away! What a full grown up man have in common with a teenager, “friendship” yeah right. You are 33, brilliant age to meet someone special, who would love and you respect you. PLEASE go NC and try to forget this loser!!! Hugs from me x

  66. amanda says:

    This is an amazing, timely post to read this week. I’ve been wanting to go NC on the exUAM/MM for well over six months. I start, and I fail. And I start, and I fail. I am the worst at keeping NC! Each time I fail, I invariably end up feeling terrible, yet I can’t seem to learn. Each time I’ve come here and have complained about the latest misdeed of the exUAM/MM, I know that I would have protected myself from that roller coaster had I kept up with NC. I get so mad at myself for not having the will to cut this man out of my life, and that only compounds the struggle.
    While I know that each failure represents that much more of a set-back in my recovering from this man, from this addiction, from my ability to put myself first, I am learning that I also have to be compassionate with myself. I am sure that I am not the only person here who has struggled for going-on-a-year with really implementing NC. Still, its hard to walk that fine line of compassion towards oneself while maintaining the serious intent of breaking the addiction once and for all.
    This last round of failure took a toll on my health. The exMM/UAM contacted me to let me know that he was finally leaving his wife, but was moving in with another exOW. When I asked him if he was involved with the exOW, he did his old evasive thing of not answering me. I let that beat me up for days. I stopped sleeping and hardly ate. I’m coming out of this bender (that’s how I think about these periods of broken NC. They are like benders! Its like going to Vegas and maxxing out on booze, cocaine, hookers, and high stakes poker, then waking up naked on the street lying in your own puke. Indulging contact with your Person of Addiction feels just like that). I’m hopeful once again that I can cut him out of my life, especially since the other shoe has dropped. He left his wife, but he did not fulfill my hope and run to me. He ran to someone else, and is going to keep playing the same evasive games with me for as long as I let him.
    Ouch, but maybe this time I can stick with it?

    • simple pleasures says:

      @ amanda “I am sure I am not the only person here who has struggled for going-on-a-year with really implementing NC.”
      Yes, that would be me, holidays 2011 to
      holidays 2012. I said to myself I was NC, counted days, weeks, found Br Jan. 2012. Then Feb. slipped up with Valentine email, ok, back on NC wagon.
      Then April, finally had the closure talk, then back on wagon and of course sent him a birthday card in Sept. back on wagon, a few slips. It was FAUX NC.
      We are in a club that meets once a week. I thought because I answered one word answers to his salutations I was NC. Dancingqueen straightened me out in Dec. And at the holiday party I had my aha moment with his casual acknowledgement, I thought, I’m really tired of resisting complete NC,it’s still crumb contact and I’ve allowed it. So I sent my final email (last one was last Feb.) saying ignore me. Since then he has been pretty respectful except to come over and wish me a “happy birthday”. I think the reason it is so difficult to totally cut off all hope
      with someone we so much loved is that when the relationship falters, fizzles, blows up, evaporates, ends maybe not with a bang but a whimper, we
      immediately enter the emotional turmoil of grieving. So for me I spent a year grieving with the phases of denial, bargaining, depression, anger,
      just wondering how long it would take to get to the calm of acceptance.
      I guess it took that year, because now I will not initiate contact again.
      No valentine contact this year.
      Mind you, I see him (by my peripheral vision now, no eye contact for now)once
      a week. I still need to pound good sense into my head and come to BR. I hope I can resist contact on his birthday next Sept. I already know it will be on a day the club meets..we are
      all trying to make progress here. When
      you have had intense feelings over time for someone it will take time to wind down.

      • amanda says:

        Good luck with that! Its sobering to know that even with months of NC, each day still feels like a challenge. But, if other readers here can do it, maybe I can, as well. I’m feeling too humbled right now by my last failure to say THIS TIME, I’LL DO IT RIGHT with any confidence, but at least my life in all other departments is rich and rewarding.
        I remember someone giving the following dieting advice: “Don’t obsess about the food you must avoid. Instead, allow yourself to indulge in the food which is truly healthy for you!” ie, stop worrying about cutting out sugar, and fill yourself up with lovely broccoli and salads and whole grains. Similarly, I figure if we who struggle with NC can focus on filling our lives with healthy activities, that will help take the aching focus off of how we must stop indulging in our addiction.

    • runnergirl says:

      Hey Amanda, I responded below and then read your comment again so I have a little more to add, if Nat permits, and you don’t mind. I noticed a few things like when you said “he was finally leaving his wife, but was moving in with another exOW. When I asked him if he was involved with the exOW, he did his old evasive thing of not answering me”. He’s moving in with her. Wouldn’t his actions of moving in with her suggest he is involved, despite his evasive answer? I don’t mean to be snarky or hurt you.
      I used the same verbs, “hopeful” and “maybe”. And I went back time and time again. Finally something snapped. I “hope” something snaps for you.

      • amanda says:

        Ha ha, no you aren’t being harsh at all. Of course, they are involved. For a few days, I had hoped that they weren’t. The UAM told me for many months that he and his wife simply couldn’t afford to separate; it had to be done at no additional expense. The OOW lives alone in a huge house which has been in her family for generations, presumably has no family from a prior marriage, and was one of two people (me being the other) who was sympathetic to what he was going through. The UAM had also been telling me as late as 3 weeks ago that the only woman he ever loved and desired was his wife, and all of the cheating he had done was because she was repressed. Fool that I am, I kept holding onto this spotty story for the first few days of hearing the new reality. It took the UAM telling me that in the course of 1 week, he had already introduced his young children to the OOW with huge success, and that they were going to start living there part time, for me to finally see the truth. The UAM had fast forwarded his way into basically another marriage. Also, since I have a PhD in deciphering the UAM’s slippery grasp of honesty, I have learned that when I ask a question, and he evades answering it, the truth is what he wouldn’t want me to hear. I asked if they were involved, and I have barely heard from him since. Relationship insanity all around. I have to say, I am feeling much better about this. Good luck to the OOW with her three new housemates who aren’t going to pay her rent, and to all of the fast forwarding and future faking she’s going to be slammed with.

        • amanda says:

          Thanks for letting me process all of that. I feel less the need to. The fact is that, for all the time that the exMM was with his wife, I foolishly held onto the home that he would offer me more if he ever left the marriage. He’s left the marriage, and the other shoe has dropped… into the OOW’s lap. If not hers, it would have been someone else’s. As hard as it is to process this, I am also relieved that I am finally able to face the truth. Maybe its too early to make this call, but I feel less obsessive and addicted. I feel angry, sad, sobered… but I don’t want to hear from him. I don’t want to expose myself once again to another cycle of Avoidat/Addictive push pull with a very lost man… and with a man whom I have been lost around. All of a sudden, this weekend, projects which I have been putting off for years are calling my name. I feel so much more generous towards the real people in my life. Thanks, people of BR, for being my witness. I know that I have ways to go before I am out of the woods, but perhaps I see a glimmer of light through the trees. Again, I will look back on this latest (and hopefully, last) chapter in the drama as a blessing, the wake up call I needed to move on with my life.

    • Little Star says:

      Amanda, you are not alone in this roller coaster. I was with EX AC for 5 years and all these years I tried to break free from him! I never contacted him first, NEVER, but I would always respond to his sweet short messages:( Live and learn. Hope you will stick to NC this time, good luck!

  67. teachable says:

    I did manage to go NC & stay that way b4 my now deceased AC died. I feel though there was some sort of unfinished business with us. I could be wrong. Due to my anger at his willfull deception we never spoke again, after I learned he’d reconciled with his ex b4 me, & not told me about this, effectively stringing us both along at the same time (although I was not a fully fledged r.ship & he was more leading me on that this would happen after doing xyz, that is, a stint in rehab to sort out his addiction issues. The deception was easy for him to pull off as we were in different states). Then suddenly, he died. The 1st anniversary of his death was 3 wks ago.

    I’ve been so consumed with struggling in my own crisis mode, in other (serious) areas I haven’t had time to grieve the normal way a person would, on such an anniversary. Previous to learning of the deception, I’d held a torch for this person for 17 yrs, since we last broke up, hoping all that time, he’d return one day, with his shit together. So, for 21 years, (including the time of our first involvement) I loved this person. He came back alright, but not with his shit together. He came back & instead almost destroyed me, hence, the NC.

    I turned to thoughts of his death two days ago & added that to everything else going on here. My entire world has gone to hell in a handbasket in all areas, due to health issues. I felt very, very down. I’m not sure if this is normal? Logic says though, when someone dies (regardless of their BS), & you lose yr health & career, & like a domino effect next yr fighting to keep yr house, or just for a meal each day, let alone yr medical treatment, none of which you can afford anymore, only a nutcase would be whistling dixie!

    • Emerldeyez says:

      Amanda, your post echoed me, and I really honed in to your talk about the addiction. I am in recovery of several addictions, some you have to quit 100% – alcohol, the other you have to learn a healthier way – food. The relationship addiction is almost a combination of the two. You have to go NC with the person, but you have to learn a healthier way to relate with men. BOTH are a road of self exploration and balance. And entail learning to trust your own instincts, intuition and having the like minded support to stick the course and change to recover.
      I have been NC with a couple of slips, because he has been relentless, to the point of stalking me. I have not gone back when I broke the NC, it was to say stay away, I’m done and I’m calling the police if you come back here again. I realize unless i change, it will just be a different face but the same set of problems, and it has been. Some worse than others depending on how vulnerable, I was at the time I met him. I have to keep forefront in my mind, heart and soul, that I am a creation of god, and I am good enough just the way I am. That I have within me all the resources some guy has to take care of myself, and be ok. No man has the solutions to my life. A healthy relationship is to enhance my life, not become the center of my life, and I lose myself in the process. That has always left an emptiness in my soul, that I then need to fill up to feel whole. And that has been whatever the addiction of the day is. So thank you, I have had one of those AH-HA epiphany moments, and I’m going to continuing coming back to get my nourishment here, from everyone that posts, and thank you Natalie, for your posts. I’m also going to get involved in a CODA group again. ( codependents anonymous) I wondered why I have been overworking, not eating properly, and not working out and hiking like I usually do the last two months, the same length of time of NC, but I also got a promotion at work, and have immersed myself, conveniently in the new position. So I’m pulling back, and getting back in balance again. thank you for your words. Who he is, and what he does no longer matters. It’s me that matters, It’s me that needs to change, to have a better relationship, first with myself, and then with a man. And I have the tools today to do just that.

      • amanda says:

        Thank you for sharing your story and for sharing your insight. I do truly believe in the the addiction model; in fact, we know that Love Addiction is a valid thing. It can be so reassuring in a way to view this tendency to stay in touch with an Avoidant person as an addiction. It outlines a course of action, and shines the spotlight on how little this compulsion has to do with an actual relationship. On the other hand, the fact that two sentient people are involved in enabling the addiction makes it that much harder to break. A six-pack of beer never calls or texts you and lets you know how much it misses you. You don’t go out and buy a six-pack, worried that someone else will get it, if you don’t. You don’t worry about the six-pack’s feelings if you don’t drink it. When it comes to Love Addiction, you get really confused about the other person’s role. But, I guess that there is a valid parallel here. Let’s say that you are an alcoholic, and your best friend is an alcoholic. Let’s say that you care deeply about your friend, but when you are around him, you always end up getting drunk with each other. Perhaps neither of you are in a good place to be friends, because you can only enable each others’ addiction. With Love Addiction, the issue is the relationship, itself. While the Avoidant person (the AC, the UA person) might not seem as addicted, they are, in their own way. They have nothing to give, yet they still need you in their life, on the periphery. When I have the will to leave the ex-exMM alone for more than a few days, he unfailingly contacts me. He needs me as much as I need him, but neither of us are exercising a healthy need.

        • runnergirl says:

          Oh Amanda, OUCH. The description of your situation with the exMM was similar to mine, sans leaving his wife for another OW, although that still could happen as anything is possible when involved with a MM. That’s got to sting. However, of course, his behavior with the OOW has nothing to do with you, right? I struggled for an entire year with FAUX NC as he would unfailingly contact me or I’d break down and contact him. I got burned everysingletime I put my hand back in the fire. By the second year, there were still urges but since I was burned to a crisp, I resisted my urges (thanks to Nat and BR) and his contacts. He resorted to snail mail since he was blocked in cyberspace. Natalie referred to him as a cockroach after a nuclear bomb. I’ve established a routine of taking care of me, soothing in a healthier manner, and that seemed to quiet the urges. That and the fact that he simply has nothing to offer. He became like a door-to-door vacuum salesperson trying to sell me the same used vacuum that didn’t work. Like you say, he had nothing to offer but he still wanted me in his life on the periphery. For me, that just got really old. In continuing your analogy with the six pack of beer (made me laugh), by the second year he became like a flat, warm six pack of Budweiser. Use whatever vision works…a cockroach, a broken, used vacuum, salesman, a warm,flat six pack of bud. Natalie has posts on being the OW to the OW. Apparently even being an OW to the OW isn’t unique. I’m sending lots of warm hugs and tons of cyber-strength your way. Oh, and if you want to give me your cell, I’ll reply if contacts you!

          • Little Star says:

            Runnergirl, wow to: “He became like a door-to-door vacuum salesperson trying to sell me the same used vacuum that didn’t work”…GOSH, that what I am going to think of if I have another urge to contact ex AC! THANK YOU!!!

          • Victorious says:

            This was great Runnergirl. I have had a bit of a setback recently. Haven’t contacted him but have had two really vivid dreams where I contact him. He is, as he would be in RL, ecstatic to hear from me. Then I wake up and am so glad I haven’t really contacted him but am left wondering why? I thought I was nearly over it/him. Maybe it is just the “death throes” of my addiction to him. What really worked for me is your used vacuum cleaner that doesn’t work analogy. He wanted me there as his chief cheerleader but he had nothing to offer, and even his, erm, equipment was faulty. I know he would snap me up back into his life but it would still all be on his terms and I would be back to square one, dying a slow agonising death.
            I am cross with myself for thiking of him at all. I wish he would just go away. I haven’t come as far as I had thought and now I am disappointed in myself.

          • amanda says:

            I, too, enjoy the analogy with the used vacuum-cleaner salesman! It made me laugh out loud. I am hoping that now that he’s sucked into fast forwarding his way into a new partnership with the OOW (including making her stepmom to his kids!), he wont “need” me as much and will stop poking around me for an ego stroke. Wishful thinking? If he’s a real narcissist, he’ll probably keep testing me for as long as I will let him, which, yes, sigh, means that its totally on me to keep up NC.

            • runnergirl says:

              Little Star, Victorious, and Amanda, it was Nat’s Dreamer book that finally got through to me. When he’d come a knocking, it was always the same reality/broken used vacuum and it was the same silly “Pretty Woman” dream on my part that somehow…some day…NOT. Yeah Amanda, this guy must have the brassiest set of brass balls ever. Leaves his wife for an OOW and expects that you’ll still be there. He’s offering you NOT.A.THING. I don’t know if he’s a narcissist but he’ll keep coming back for whatever he can get as long as you allow it. I think that’s why NC is NC. It is up to you. He certainly doesn’t have your best interest in mind. I’m glad you didn’t find my comments harsh. Your situation pissed me off. Sending you all heaps of willpower.

              • Victorious says:

                Thanks Runnergirl. I have realized what set me off. It wasn’t obvious at first but I think it is because another ex, from THIRTY years ago has been in contact. This is a guy I dated in college who was so sweet and so nice and so damn sexy. But, he was clearly not over his ex so I finished with him and of course he went back to her. Fast Forward thirty years and he is contacting me out of the blue. I just have this image of him going through his mental roladex/little black book and saying, “yeah, Victorious, she was always good and nice and sweet and always put up with all my shit without complaining. I bet she would do a bit of florencing now I am in the midst of a mid life crisis.” He describes his marital status as “married but temporarily separated.” Erm, that would be married then, and has made various comments that lead me to believe he has had some mind of burnout/breakdown. All these red flags and yet the urge to agree to meet up is so strong. I think it is this that led to the dreams about the recent ex narc. I think my subconscious is screaming at me that I am going to get a similar result if I ignore my BR education. Thanks to everyone for reading and posting. It makes such a difference.

              • amanda says:

                runnergirl: with each passing hour, I feel more and more sobered to the time I have wasted trying to create this realtionship out of nothing. I’m part way through the Fantasy book, and I have also been checking out Love Addiction literature. Howard Halpern’s “How to get over your Addiction to a Person” has been really helpful, even if I don’t buy his outdated psychoanalytic line, whole-hog. I also got one more mini-reality check from the UAM at the end of last week that was so ridiculous, it made me laugh. In response to my very-serious e-mail where I asked him if he was romantically/sexually involved again with the UAM, and where I asserted that we needed to start being honest with each other if we wanted to be friends, I heard nothing for 48 hours, then I got a one-line e-mail from him: “Damn, these women who walk under my office window are so hot, I can’t stand it.” WHHAAAAAAAA? We’ve been talking totally different languages. I’m worrying about our “relationship” and he’s thinking about all of the women he wants to bed now that he isn’t married anymore. This guy is a sad loser, and as I said before, good luck to the OOW with her new instant partner/housemate/family.

        • Emerldeyez says:

          Amanda, I agree with what you write. But when one person wants to get sober, they have to change people, places and things. And if the friend wants to get sober, great, you get sober together, if not, you end up walking fromt the friendship because they are a slippery slope. Same as love addiction, if you both want help, you go to couple’s counseling. Problem is, if you are with a narcissist, they don’t go to therapy, they have a personality disorder, and they are like the anti social personality disorder, they can’t feel empathy, they use people, for their own gain. Yep, they need us as much as we need them, water seeks its own level. So you know what the problem is, you are the healthier of the two, and you will leave when you have had enough pain. When there is no longer a payoff, we change. I laugh when you said a 6 pack doesn’t call or text you. LOL I don’t know about that, the brownies on my counter right now are calling my name. Going to have to toss them because I decided to go no sugar. Same as why I don’t have alcohol in the house, I would obsess and think about it until I would talk myself into having a glass of wine, or the brownies! Same as calling the EUM if I thought about him long enough. I think it through, on all counts, and end up not acting on my impulse, then I can pat myself on the back! It feels good to have some control over my life again.

          • amanda says:

            Thanks for this, Emeraldeyez. I know, in my heart, that you are absolutely right. The UAM has made a career out of bouncing from one woman to the next, always with plenty of back-up options in the queue. He doesn’t want to work on himself, nor does he feel like he should. If I were an alcoholic struggling with sobriety, it would be a bad idea to hang out with my drinking buddies. Likewise, its a bad idea for me to expect healthy support from a man who is just as addicted towards codependent love as I am, albeit in his avoidant way. It’s been challenging, as he talks the talk about going to therapy, wanting real love in his life, etc., but then, when it comes down to nuts and bolts, he and I aren’t equipped to give that too each other. We’ve been in the Addict/Avoidant pattern for far too long.

          • amanda says:

            Thank you also for your instruction on thinking it through. If he ignores me, I feel like a fool and I feel like I acted without dignity. If he does reply, he invariably never gives me enough, and I just get angry. if he does get meaty with me, it often is as upsetting as it is immediately gratifying (ie, he tells me he is leaving his wife and moving in with the OOW is juicy, but it just led me to wanting more, more, more information until he shut down). It never leads to anything good. Plus, when I have the urge, I can also meditate on why that urge is there in the first place. Why is the exMM the only man in the world who can make me feel good? Why do I lack the internal validation machinery. I know that if I can emerge from this addiction, I can be proud of myself for being strong, clear-minded, disciplined, and warrior-like. This is a great foundation for building one’s own self-esteem.

            • Emerldeyez says:

              My ex AC went to therapy one time with me. This was in July, when he got two counts of Domestice violence for taking the keys out of my car, and leaving me stranded and then becoming abusive to the cop, he got a harassment charge. So we go to therapy, and the therapist, asked him to leave the session, because he became abusive to her. Therapy doesn’t work with a narcissist, because you are an extension of them. And if they think they are treating you ok, what’s the problem??? You have the problem. So it doesn’t work. Any guy that is still married, is not available for a relationship. You hit the nail on the head, learning to validate yourself. They we aren’t so vulnerable to someone who throws a crumb our way. Then you can set boundaries, and say “ouch” when they step on them, and FLUSH them.

      • amanda says:

        One challenging aspect of this. On the surface, the exMM and I communicate to each other in friendly and caring terms. The fabricated story we tell each other and we tell ourselves is that we are friends, and we have been able to put our messy history as cheating lovers (cheating against his soon-to-be-ex-wife) in our past. NC usually breaks when someone initiates a seemingly harmless and friendly message. We let down our guards, and the conversation begins. Before I know it, I once again feel like I am chasing someone evasive: I am initiating more than he is, he is never answering my questions, I have an agenda that he can’t fulfill. Next thing I know, he’s gone again (blowing cold). As far as believing that we can be friends, the writing has been on the wall for a while. Its a damned shame, since, under different circumstances, had we not been inappropriately involved with each other, had I not developed feelings for him, we maybe could have been friends. Still, this is the reason why NC fails between us.

        • amanda says:

          And, admittedly, part of me wants to be more than friends. I’ve read the past BR columns on the fallacy of “being friends”, and I know that I must cop to this. It’s all so internally messy and conflicted for me, even though, on the surface, we supposedly have this smooth friendship. Again, I think that we both, for our own reasons, are pulling the wool over our eyes and trumpet this so-called friendship so we can ignore the complicated past and our respective inabilities to exercise healthy relationships. That being said, I know that I’ve dodged a bullet by avoiding all romantic and sexual contact with him for over a year. I would feel that much worse now. Or, would I? Hard to know.

        • Ms Determined says:

          Amanda, I say a giant MEH to your remorse about the lost opportunity to be friends. Yeah, if it was under different circumstances, no inappropriate involvement, no developing feelings AND IF HE WASN’T SUCH A MASSIVE LYING, CHEATING, FUCKWIT yeah, you might have been BFFs for evah.

          I love (and when I say love, I mean, I am incensed by) that your communications start out ‘friendly’ and end in him blowing cold when he’s not willing to reveal exactly the degree of low down dirty fuckery he is perpetrating on everyone involved. Where was he when “How to Make Friends: 101” was being taught? By the sounds of it, this guy was behind a tree at the back of the playground blowing Ms Ribble the English teacher. I bet she allowed it because she felt sorry for him that he was such an UNSPEAKABLE LOSER. Friendly and caring? Puh-lease. Do you actually think he employs these two concepts out of the goodness of his heart? You don’t think he uses them because he knows this is what draws you in? That he knows you can’t resist the lure of his shitful ‘friendship’?

          Instead of lamenting the fact that you two can’t be friends, I would go out and find some who know the meaning of the word. Here’s a hot tip, look for friendships that don’t necessitate crying yourself to sleep at night. :-)

          • amanda says:

            Thank you, Ms. Determined. Part of my resistance to giving him up was that I didn’t want to admit that I was wrong in judging his character. I see that I am. This man is such a pathetic loser. And a liar. And, I’ve given him a pass each and every time, starting with the fact that he presented himself as single on the on-line dating site where we met. It was almost three years ago that this huge lie was revealed to me, and now I am learning the lesson of keeping liars and cheaters around. At first, I was told that it was an open-relationship (not a marriage). Then, I was told that was an open marriage. Then, I learn that the marriage was not open. And, the lies kept coming, and I kept giving him a pass. Its true. If they lie and cheat on their spouses, they lie and cheat to everyone.

            • beth d says:

              Amanda I had the same problem with not accepting I had judged his character wrong. It was so hard. He seemed so sincere at points in the relationship and treated me so well. It is our own ego and validating the whole relationship. It is mind boggling to think that you were with a scumbag all that time. And yes re married men. They lie to everyone even themselves. Keep strong He is no friend but just keeping his foot in the door to mind phuck you and wait for a weak moment from you. He has HIS best interests at heart and with friends like that who needs enemies.

            • Emerldeyez says:

              Mine told me he had a 10 year legal separation and they still lived together, and she was a lesbian. AND guess what? none of that was true. A family member told me he was the EUM’s best man when they went to Vegas to renew their vows, 7 years ago. (he’s been divorce two years) AND surprise, she isn’t a lesbian, and they weren’t legally separated, while he was cheating on her. They got divorced because she caught him. They lie and cheat on their spouses, they lie and cheat to everyone!!!

  68. teachable says:

    PS I very rarely think of my deceased AC now, & only did a couple of days ago, due to the 1st anniversary of his death. I might have to add not thinking about him (if I can help it, which to date, generally speaking I can ie who wants to soend time thinking about someone who screwed you over?) to by ‘do not do’ list.

    It’s hard finding a balance. I need to allow myself to orocess this grief but not overly focus it on him. I’m WAY deep now in a whole other sort of grief re other people & issues, as how he treated me this time around (ie he wasn’t an AC when we were first a couple 20+ yrs ago), was merely a symptom of a theme, which played a huge part of my early life.

    This grief, which is for ME, is profound. Despite being ill & not doing much physically, I’ve lost 20kgs in the past 6 mths. This is extraordinary. I’m not normally a super skinny girl. More just average weight, & well proportioned ie busty. Now, I’m literally just fading away before my own eyes. It’s bizarre.

    Anyway, like I said, time for me to push for serious medical help. There has to be some out there somewhere.

  69. teachable says:

    I would add, let what I am going through be a warning to others. I’m a tough girl. No pushover by a longshot. But what’s happening to me can happen to you too, if you’re not very vigilent & if you don’t heed the warnings, about going NC with AC’s sooner rather than later. I’ve been NC with mine for long time now & I am STILL dealing with the fallout here.

    • beth d says:

      Sorry for what you are going through teach. I know what you mean. I am a tough girl too and no pushover and got caught on a ridiculous roller coaster because I had a hard time with NC. The longer the relationship insanity goes on the harder it is to be free. Hang in there.

  70. chloe says:

    Thanks Lilia,

    it’s amazing how we get suckered in becasue we value friendship. He just emailed me asking for a date, when I asked him what he meant by date, he appologized that he used the wrong terminology. i think he knows exactly what he’s doing and it angers me. I feel like i am actually dealing with an AC, not just a EU. Anyways, thanks for sharing your story.

  71. Manda says:

    Thanks Natalie for another great post. I have been a reader and fan of this site since 2008. You have gotten me through a lot of ups and downs.

    Right now I am experiencing a down. Major down. Off and on with a guy since April of 2012. He went back to his ex in June but continued to be around with me (I didn’t realize he was back with the ex but was noticing him being a bit more distant). Throughout the summer we had contact just because we were professional acquaintances.

    He and the ex broke up in Sept and he and I started up full force again. I KNEW KNEW KNEW I should have said no and stopped myself. But I am so desperate to find the “one” because I am so tired of being alone. Basically I am one cat short of being the crazy cat lady!!!!! We dated for a month and a half. He practically lived with me…it became very domestic…. He would future fake, introduce me to friends…use the words “we” and “home” when talking about my apartment. Then like typical assclown clockwork, he backed off. Right around his bday.

    Long story short he kept telling me we needed to talk and it never happened. So I blew up at him and after he said some hateful words to me (like I never want to talk or see you again, or you are acting like fatal attraction–slight dramatic on his part) we were done. Except when he texted me a few days later and said we owed it to ourselves to have a conversation. But… never happened. And I was left hanging and w/out closure (I know, closure “ain’t” all that.

    So fast forward two months later…NC but I am staring to feel that urge…exactly what this post is about. I want to break my silence…and for what? Well it doesn’t matter. Because I find out tonight that he is back with his ex.

    I feel so used. And I guess I kind of felt like I could have been a rebound, but instead I let myself get bamboozled. I can’t even express how angry I am at him. He didn’t have the balls to tell me himself. If he wants to go back to his ex (and continue to cheat on her like he’s done multiple times) then that’s his business. But FOR THE LOVE be honest with me. Be a MAN and tell me what’s happening.

    I broke NC. And I am sorry ladies and gents on this site and Nat too. I had to tell him I knew and that he was a coward. And then I blocked him. I won’t do it again. He makes me physically sick to my stomach.

    Shame on me because he fooled me twice.

    Sorry for the rant.

    • Manda says:

      And I should clarify…he got back with her right after we were done. The week after he uttered the words “I just don’t know if I can handle the responsibility of coming home every night” in front of me nd some of his friends. Yea…I laid awake next to him that night and was stuck on those words.

  72. beth d says:

    Manda sometimes we just have to do the tell off thing. You got it off your chest and now just go NC. No harm no foul

    • Manda says:

      Thanks, Beth D. I agree. I just wish I could be the person that walks away and shuts them out with no problem.

      • Emerldeyez says:

        You will get to that point, when you can no longer deny the pain he is causing you, and you deserve better. But believe me it won’t be easy and coming here and getting the support will help you, everyone here has been where you are at! and finding and reading and re-reading Natalie’s posts, will help you get through it all. And keep busy and take care of yourself and you will see the days of NC add up.

        • Manda says:

          Thanks Emerldeyez…..I just saw him driving and yep, his gf was with him. I lost it. I have been bawling for 20 min. It’s like I know this guy is a creep…the worst possible kind of person. So why, oh why!? am I expending these emotions and tears on this horrible person.
          I am feeling so used. So very used. And I shouldn’t want to be with a cheat like him. So why the tears? I should be thanking God for having dodged yet ANOTHER bullet.

          Thanks for support! I do appreciate it.

          • KerryKerry says:


            I’ve been there. It feels like you can’t breathe, can’t move, can’t do anything.

            The only thing that makes it better is trying to remember how terrible he made/makes you feel. Just know that it’s a matter of time before she feels that too. And eventually he is going to wear out all the people he can run to, and he’ll be left alone and though he won’t say anything he will regret losing you, if you go NC.

            Don’t stay stuck on him. “The best revenge is living a fabulous life.” When you read this site imagine all of the women who have been with men who they “loved” or thought were “one of a kind.” They’re not. THEY’RE JUST NOT THAT SPECIAL.

            Exes are exes for a reason. If two people break up, that means FOR SURE that they are not right for each other.

            I dated a boy for a little over a year. When I met him he had just gotten out of a two year relationship. They broke up once for three months while they dated. We broke up in November, still hung out in December. And then he admits that he’s been hanging out with her again. It’s pathetic really. He’s unable to be alone and do the work of meeting/finding someone new (probably because someone who isn’t already emotionally invested in him will see him for the assclown he is) So he’s back with his ex, and it PISSES me off, but more importantly it makes me laugh. They didn’t work twice already add in a lot more baggage for another relationship and what do you think you’re going to get?

            Cry all you need to, but when you’re done crying… delete his number, go for a run, put on some makeup and your best dress and say “Bump him.” He’s just not the special.

            I wish you the best. Everyday of focusing on making yourself happy really does add up. I promise. I’ve never been in a darker place than when he left me for her. But less than 2 weeks of NC and I’m starting to see clearly.

            Remember it comes in ebbs and flows. Somedays you’ll miss him, but don’t dwell on the good, and remember that someone else out there is going to feed you hummus and make you giggle and before you know it you’ll forget what life with him was like.

            Good luck!

            • Manda says:

              KerryKerry…thank you so much for the reply and telling me your story. These guys are infuriating!!

              I was definitely doing the “why her and not me” bs after I saw them together but after crying some tears, reading some baggage reclaim and talking w friends I’m at the “he can be her problem now” stage. I was definitely feeling better and had NC with him for about a month and the setback came when I found out they got back together right after we ended things. He’s been deleted and blocked.

              Thanks for your kind words and advice. I wish the best to you as well!

            • Kit-Kat says:

              KerryKerry. “The best revenge is living a fabulous life.” SO true..

          • Emerldeyez says:

            Manda, I’m luck on two counts. He lives across town, so I probably won’t run into him, unless he is stalking me, which he is. So that puts me on the defensive because of fear, and I don’t see well if I don’t have my glasses on, so I won’t see him, unless I recognized his car, and I just don’t look for it.
            It’s tears of grief, the loss of a dream. It may have been an illusion, because he’s a creep, but it still hurts. So honor your tears, it’s better to go through the feelings, than eat them, work, them or drink them away. It gets easier, day by day.

            • Manda says:

              Thanks Emerldeyez! Boy did I let the tears flow! I felt better afterwards though. I really did. And I’m back to my old self today…not saying I won’t have my down days..ESP if I run into them. But ultimately, I know I’m better off. I wish we didn’t have to fear the run ins!

  73. miskwa says:

    Yep, narcs are like a case of food that never quite goes away; they ruin your days, sap your energy and diminish your life.

    • beth d says:

      The hardest thing to accept when exposed to a narcissist is that the relationship was a lie and a web of illusion they built up. Once you truly understand that this person doesn’t have your best interest at heart as painful as that is, it really does break the spell. You awake to the truth and the illusion is broken. It is a process and it takes time but they really are dangerous to your physical and mental health. Feeling sorry and falling for their manipulative pity act will suck you back into the web. Look right past that sheep because you really are dealing with a wolf!

      • Victorious says:

        I needed to read this again today. Thanks Beth and Miskwa. My ex narc still has this hold over me. Although I am NC and have been for over three months, I still miss him in a weird way I cannot explain. I think I just miss the way he made me feel in the first three months ( like a goddess) and although I can now see that was not healthy, and that by the end he just treated me like a combination of a performing seal and a doormat, I think I have trouble with the fact it doesn’t make sense. I have to keep telling myself, Victorious, he is a narc, a raging full on malignant narc with every symptom on the scale, and how he operates will NEVER make sense to you. Time to stop wringing my hands and asking Why? Sorry, just having a bad day.

        • natashya says:

          victorious, though mine was not a narc, but just a garden variety EUM/AC, i can relate to missing this person in a weird way.

          i no longer wonder why he did what he did (cannot make sense out of nonsense, after all), but i do wonder why i still miss him. what is it about this person that still makes me sob (mostly silently these days). and yes, there you have it… HOW HE MADE ME FEEL in the very beginning.

          when our thoughts get stuck on that part, we are splitting, if only for a short moment. it’s no longer betting on potential, as the chips fell where they did. we KNOW rationally that those people are no good, that we deserve better.

          it does not make any sense at all. it can’t… if i could get rid of that today with a lobotomy, i would.

          • beth d says:

            We all can relate to the missing. Most of the time with these type of guys when it was good….it was really good. They are the best actors on the planet and often know the exact right things to do and say to get you back. They are also very often charmers like no other. I will always tell my friends the roughest part for me was our times together were great. It was in between that was the problem. The running hot and cold, disappearing, gaslighting…That is why I stopped trying to make sense of it. They are effin crazy and that is it in a nutshell LOL

          • Kit-Kat says:

            natashya.. There are days when I say “I miss him” to myself. Other days It doesnt enter my mind. IDK, confusing sometimes to me. But I just ride it thru. Splitting,yes, he had some really good qualities as a person but relationship wise he was EUM. And maybe I was too & that is why it lasted so long.
            NC has been my best friend now a days. I will never let him close enough to hurt me again. Sad kinda but so true. Just in one of those moods today. It will pass. Lobotomy time !!!!

      • Emerldeyez says:

        thanks for your comments, cuts through the crap, and nails who they really are. They want something and to them it doesn’t matter who they get it from.

        • beth d says:

          Absolutely Emerldeyez It really is all about them. They will do and say whatever’s necessary to get control over the relationship. Narcs and alot of EUMs are addicted to their mind games and role of puppet master to everyone in their lives. They have a lust for ATTENTION- for SUPPLY- their drug of choice. The more of a challenge you are to them the more they will come on. Then you end up in a Stockholm situation where you end up addicted to the abuser causing you all the pain.

          • Emerldeyez says:

            Great analogy. I need to remember that, the stockholm syndrome. We are the supply, we can end up being faceless, to them. Really takes the emotion out of the initial attention that they give to us. And makes me even more in touch with the way they romance, know what to say, it’s all a ploy to reel us in. Huge red flag. Give me a shy, tongue tied guy…… LOL He might be more real, authentic.

            • beth d says:

              We are pawns in their life and boy can they work it when they need to. I call mine master of the game because he knew just what to say to reel me back in. My friend threw out the Stockholm Syndrome to me once regarding her situation and I remember saying damn that’s me too!!!

  74. miskwa says:

    Mags and Jennifer T
    Beings as how I come from a long line of obese people and have to really watch my eating/drinking, my weaknesses are used clothing stores and Native American jewelry. After yesterdays triple whammy about my sustainability center, piss poor faculty job postings in this weeks Chronicle, and more bad news about the value of my home, I went out and bought $400 US of the stuff. Given the price of silver, it may be a good investment. Ironically, most of my pieces are waay too good to wear to anything around here and double ironically, this will insure that this months groceries will be on the skimpy side preventing any excessive eating on my part. Life is weird.

  75. Intotouch says:

    Thanks again Natalie.
    I’m wondering if you’ve ever checked out attachment styles? Something typical of an anxious attachment style is someone looking to their mate for comfort, then feeling close then with distance and time looking for reassurance again etc. This urge to look to them for comfort continues EVEN WHEN THEY’RE THE CAUSE OF THE ANXIETY. The impulse doesn’t change. In fact it can get stronger. The more anxious someone feels the more that they want to seek comfort in their mate.

  76. Kathleen says:

    OH I am not resisting anymore I LOVE this new change in me, this power I now have, I feel FANTASTIC.
    Sure in the beginning it was difficult as heck, but thats cause of the resistance. Once I forgave and let go it was inner peace for me.
    I do not own them, their thoughts, their feelings, their actions.
    Their reasons for lying and cheating are not a reflection of my character, but rather of theirs.
    I am a wonderful caring person (So are all of you)

    On another note… I was informed that my EUM was asking about me. him and his new girlfriend didn’t work out, I found out that she has some major issues of her own alcohol, drugs, and a very angry ex husband (That’s what I was replaced with)
    Anyhow he told a mutual friend how he regrets things now. him and the replacement have been broken up for almost a month.
    I said to ‘our’ friend “This is not regret he feels,it’s loneliness.”
    May you all get the love you DESERVE!!!!

  77. Tinkerbell says:

    Amanda. You have to take control. YOU are the one that has to decide what is best for YOU. You don’t allow things, situations, to just happen to you. If the guy is married, WHY are you hanging around? You still would like more than friendship? You are playing a dangerous game. Stop telling yourself you two are “friends” when you are still having serious feelings for him. Cut the ties and go about your business. Find someone who is not already married or has a gf, or is pining away over a lost love. It may be hard as hell to find that person, but it is no harder and certainly no more hopeless than what you are doing now. I know you must have more sense. Use it!

  78. High Heels Backwards says:

    Hey, BR community, this post really hit home, as I needed to go NC with the jerk who promised me the moon and then blew cold. Here’s my question — How do you understand the situation when your so-called partner probably meant as well as he could at the beginning? Rather than being an AC, I’d like to describe him as emotionally promiscuous — fast forwarding and future faking till the cows came home, but actually believing in it when he did it. It’s more like negilgence than anything intentional, more like manslaughter than murder. The lessons I take from it are probably the same as if he were a jerk, though — watch for red flags and bs. Any thoughts about this type of situation?

    • Victorious says:

      HHB, what I would say is, you may be right. However, I would guess that he has danced this dance many times before. He KNOWS he cannot deliver. That he FFs and FFs and then blows cold,leaving the latest woman thrashing around in a pit of low self esteem, wondering what the fuck just went down. Therefore, in my humble opinion, they are just as “guilty” as those who “do it” deliberately.

    • natashya says:

      yep, been there, done that. i was in denial for a while there. i also believed that my ex EUMAC (yes, AC is part of it) actually did not promise me the moon for the sake of it. i thought he really did mean it when he asked me to move in with him. i thought he really did mean it when he said i was everything he’d been looking for.

      well… had that been truly the case, i would actually be living with him and in a relationship with him. but oh no. he fairly quickly realised he had overpromised himself and overestimated his interest in me. sure, i served well as a temporary emotional airbag, but when i asked for something in return, he ran away.

      anybody emotionally healthy does not engage in future faking and fast forwarding. they don’t ask you to move in with them before they’ve actually done the work to make sure they’re ready. so yes, that makes these types FULL BLOWN ASSCLOWNS. they did it to get what they wanted with very little regard about our well being.

      these ‘unaware’ assclowns are actually worse than the callous ones who have everything planned out. these ‘unaware’ assclowns often make us sympathetic and apologetic towards them.

      it doesn’t matter if it’s manslaughter or premeditated murder. dead is dead. and an AC is an AC.

    • Fifi says:

      Hey HHB
      Yeah, I think a lot of them really do think they meant it. I’ve been thinking that women who sleep with a guy as soon as possible are doing the same – trying to bypass the awkward get-to-know-you phase, and fast-track into commitment/relationship by effectively making promises they don’t know they can keep (I was one).
      And when two of those people get together – eek!
      I think it is insecurity and self-esteem issues on both sides, but as Natashya says, their ‘why’ doesn’t matter, that’s something they have to work on. And from what I have observed, they do repeat the same behaviour over and over again, hoping that it’s the woman they are with, and not their behaviour that’s the problem. Sometime they’re going to have to face it, not sure most of them ever do

  79. Tinkerbell says:

    High Heels. You said he is “fastforwarding and futurefaking until the cows come home”. Seems to me you are making excuses for him until the cows come home. What he intends doesn’t matter. It’s what he DOES and how you feel about it. Looks to me like he is a colossal waste of your precious time. Flush!

  80. Shyner says:

    Still nothing from him. At least he will have got the message by now. He doesn’t have any friends that I can drop his stuff at. There’s shitloads of it – massive TV,PS3, speakers, tonnes of clothes, personal stuff, stereo, books…I looked into a storage place and it would cost me £60, which I don’t have. Shove it all in my shed and arrange a time with him to collect it? I don’t really have any other options. Friends wouldn’t have the room for it all. There’s a lot. I am looking forward to having nothing further to do with him. It weirds me out that to think that he might be all sorted now, and all his weird, mad, self-destructive, narcissistic traits are going to disappear, he will be wonderful and his new girlfriend and he will be very happy. I took a lot of shit from him, and listened to a lot of stuff.

    • natashya says:

      shyner, i would give that asswipe 24 hours to collect his stuff and then i would start posting it on ebay or craigslist. hey, you might actually be able to recoup some of your losses!

      • Shyner says:

        A friend and I are putting all his stuff in a storage place tomorrow. i must say, I am a bit nervous about him coming back but I’ve texted him god knows how many times to tell him this is what I’m doing and he’s never responded. In case he denies ever seeing those texts, I sent one of them to his mate, too. I really, really hope this is the end of the matter and he doesn’t go mental at me for involving his friend, like his has before. His friend didn’t want to be involved but I feel I was left with little choice given that I was being blanked.

  81. High Heels Backwards says:

    Hi all,

    Thanks so much for your feedback. This sentence: “they did it to get what they wanted with very little regard about our well being” hit home for me. Absolutely. I keep thinking about how I was going to share some of my 7-y.o. daughter’s writings with him on the last night I was supposed to see him, and my thoughts that we would both enjoy looking at her writings together. He cancelled at the last minute with a half-baked excuse about an ex-GF contacting him and him needing to get his head on straight. Yes, he had very little regard for my well-being, as evidenced by his actions. Flush! Thanks again, fellow BR readers!

  82. Paris says:

    @finallygettingit69 thank you so much and anyone else I may have missed that gave me advice. I wasn’t on BR this weekend ,.I was wallowing in my weaknesses and craving him as he sends me text basically that state I got you so I can treat you any kind of way. I have to try again to be strong and better than before .I want a relationship so bad it hurts. So I must LOVE Paris. I don’t see how I’m struggling with this but…Thanks to ALL!

  83. High Heels Backwards says:

    And I love this one too:

    “it doesn’t matter if it’s manslaughter or premeditated murder. dead is dead. and an AC is an AC.”


  84. Sarah says:

    I messed this week I had almost 6 mths of nc and was just starting to feel strong when his talk started again i tried so hard to stay away but his words just messed up my mind and we ended up having sex, this has been going on for yrs I don’t feel like I have any energy anymore I’m just an empty shell walking around please someone please help me.

    • beth d says:

      Sarah we beat ourselves up over this and I did the same thing once after 6 months NC. I didn’t sleep with him but I kissed him and screwed myself up so bad just by that. I went right back to NC and he was totally nuts over it but I knew I had to do it. I was dangerously close to getting back in the web. I messed up two more times by talking to him but no more. Keep coming here, take your energy back!!!! You can do it!

  85. Wise ol owl says:

    Sarah, after 6 mos. NC, Im sure you feel bad, but ya gotta let it go. It doesn’t matter now, just please try to move yourself forward. Go to a movie, buy all the stuff you need to do a facial or manicure, go for a long walk or begin journaling your feelings. Better yet, call a friend if you have one available and do something different. Make a vow to yourself you will not talk about him and everytime you think of him, flush him down an imaginary toilet. He “started his talk again” because you were listening. Get strong, girl–go back and read Natalie’s older articles, do everything in your power to erase him from your life. You are not an empty shell, you are a loving vessel and able to fill up your life with good things if you’ll give it a try. I know good things will follow if you do, and best of luck knowing many of us on BR are pulling for you!!

  86. Skadia says:

    I just had to put this up as I know that a lot of you go through this and coincidentally this came up on my Pandora as I was walking to work. Christina Perri, Jar of Hearts:

    I know I can’t take one more step towards you
    Cause all that’s waiting is regret
    And don’t you know I’m not your ghost anymore
    You lost the love I loved the most

    I learned to live half alive
    And now you want me one more time…

    And who do you think you are
    Running around leaving scars
    Collecting your jar of hearts
    And tearing love apart,
    You’re gonna catch a cold
    From the ice inside your soul
    So don’t come back for me.
    Who do you think you are?

    I hear you’re asking all around
    If I am anywhere to be found
    But I have grown too strong
    To ever fall back in your arms

    And I’ve learned to live half alive
    And now you want me one more time

    And who do you think you are
    Running around leaving scars
    Collecting your jar of hearts,
    And tearing love apart
    You’re gonna catch a cold
    From the ice inside your soul
    Don’t come back for me
    Who do you think you are?

    It took so long just to feel alright
    Remember how to put back the light in my eyes
    I wish I had missed the first time that we kissed
    Cause you broke all your promises
    And now you’re back
    You don’t get to get me back

    And who do you think you are
    Running around leaving scars
    Collecting your jar of heart
    And tearing love apart
    You’re gonna catch a cold
    From the ice inside your soul
    So don’t come back for me
    Don’t come back at all!

    And who do you think you are
    Running around leaving scars
    Collecting your jar of hearts
    And tearing love apart
    You’re gonna catch a cold
    From the ice inside your soul
    Don’t come back for me
    Don’t come back at all
    Who do you think you are?
    Who do you think you are?
    Who do you think you are?

    • Victorious says:

      I LOVE this and sing it all the time!! It really does remind me of ex narc, and that feeling that I was living half alive when we first split. The good news is that with NC and time, the pain DOES lessen and a recovery is truly possible. I like the video for this too. At the end she steps over the body of the ex and walks off on her way….

      • runnergirl says:

        Boy is this spot on. Thanks Skadia. Collecting a jar of hearts seems like a perfect analogy for next week and for every week. Love when she steps over the ex. Who the eff do they think they are? That’s one recovered FBG! It’s funny how so many, from musicians (all kinds) to artists to brilliant authors like Nat as well as screen writers, write about the same phenomenon. I’m not feeling so alone or like such an idiot. Shit happens.

    • beth d says:

      Omg I love this!!! I never saw the video. I have to check out and yes totally reminds me of my ex narc

    • Emerldeyez says:

      very powerful! Watched the video!

  87. geekgirl says:

    This is my first time posting here. I’ve been reading for a while now. Its a long story,

    My boyfriend (of nine months) told me on New Years Eve, that he had visited a sex worker, after the last time we spent together. He did this, because he was angry that I had made plans to go out with friends . He did not tell me about being angry at the time. He only told me about the sex worker, because we were having an argument (about me insisting on contraception, he said it made me like a prostitute)

    It was a pretty tumultuous relationship. I was very very infatuated. He frequently withhekd affection, and expressed uncertainty over how he felt about me. Occasionally, usually when I expressed doubts about the relationship, he would act extremely loving, and talk about long term plans.

    For 3 weeks after the break up, I was subject to an intense barrage of texts. These varied wildly, from professing that I deserved to die alone, to claiming to love and miss me, to telling me I had a big nose (!). At one stage, he talked about getting counselling, to help solve our issues. He also asked to meet me, and told me he loved me. However, when I tried to express how angry and hurt I was about the sex worker, he walked away. The next day, he expressed surprise that I was still hung up on the relationship, and told me that I really needed to let go, and stop clinging to the past.

    The messages stopped two weeks ago .Im trying so hard not to contact him, but broke NC on Thursday, where I sent him a text, saying how much I missed him, and would like to work things out. I haven’t heard back from him. I’m pretty sure he has found himself someone else.

    I’m not stupid. I KNOW it was a TERRIBLE relationship. I know there is NO WAY that getting back in touch with him would do anything, other than prolong my agony. Its GOOD that he is not replying to me. But, I feel terrible. I cry every day. like many other people here, I really felt he was the one for me. He was like my mirror, he reflected a lot of the (good and bad) parts of my own personality.

    I’m doing NC, but its SO hard. I know his phone number by heart, so deleting it doesnt help. Just today, I wrote out 3 different texts. Each time, I deleted them before I sent them. But, it only takes a minute of weakness to let one slip through.

    Thanks to anyone who bothers reading all of this. Just typing it out helps.

    • beth d says:

      Geekgirl The important thing is that you know he is no good and you know that you need to go NC. He sounds like a total nightmare POS Take it a day at a time, keep busy, and trust me it really does get better. Remember how bad it felt when he didn’t answer you because I am sure that had to hurt. Take back control of your life and keep reading BR It really does help keep you strong.

    • yoghurt says:


      I’m sure that your nose is lovely, and this bloke sounds like the git to end all gits.

      Well done for going NC, but you MUST stick to it. You don’t want to get sucked back into his alternate-dimension reality, where his behaviour is normal, girlfriends aren’t allowed to get annoyed about your use of prostitutes, infidelity is an acceptable way to deal with minor annoyances, safe sex is indescribably antisocial and nobody ought to notice that you change your perspective of the world twenty times a minute.

      That is not a world that you want to live in, and you do NOT want to be the mirror image of this bloke – he sounds super nasty.

      If it helps any, I worked out eventually that I wasn’t upset because I really really loved the AC, I was upset because he’d been horrible and deeply uncaring towards me and when people are horrible and deeply uncaring towards you then it hurts a lot.

      The desperation that you feel to contact him again is more likely to be your brain not wanting to accept the reality of his deeply horrible behaviour, and instead trying to salvage something that will allow you to avoid the reality.

      Unfortunately, the reality (afaics) is that a) he is a MANKY EXCUSE FOR A HUMAN BEING and b) he has been horrible to you. And the bother with reality is that you can’t avoid it indefinitely – even when both of you collude to cover it up it’ll pop out sooner or later and hurt more when it does.

      So sit tight, look after yourself, do REALLY nice things that you want to do and keep your distance from this horrible man. He sounds as though he ought to have yellow police tape wrapped all around him.

    • grace says:

      Delete the no. You will forget it eventually.
      There is something seriously wrong with this man. He is not the one for you. I would laugh at that if I didn,t feel for you.
      You,re already doing better than those poor women who would overlook the prostitute and wouldn’t insist on a condom. But there is still hope for those women and there is for you. You can do this.

      • beth d says:

        Grace I have to say I remember when I came on BR right after my break up when my ex was trying to get me back and I was in a total state of confusion. I was still in the “fog” although I somehow was staying strong but not with NC. I can’t remember the exact post I made but you told me to FLUSH…Damn girl I should have listened to you. I had a few more years of post break up mind phukery that could have been avoided. Listen to Grace geek! She knows what she is talking about!

    • Emerldeyez says:

      Welcome to this site, it has offered all of us a place to vent, sort stuff out, get support, in an effort to make sense out of the insanity we have gone through being in a relationship with a man who looks at a woman as a means to a selfish end. There are no true feelings, they are master manipulators, and when you don’t go along with their program, they unleash their nastiness in any way to put you down. That is the true trait of a narcissist. I agree with yoghurt, beth and grace. It’s a process of letting go of the fantasy, the illusion we bought into and coming to terms with the reality. It’s hard to think that there are people out there that just use people, and have no conscious, no empathy, for what they are doing to someone else. But there are. NC is the beginning, and probably was the hardest thig I could do. But then I could really let my mind absorb who my AC really was. And to see how I had become a victim, and wanted to take my life back. So keep coming back!

  88. happilymovingon says:

    Well said Emerldeyez, “When you don’t go along with their program, they unleash their nastiness in any way to put you down”.

    I decided to go NC with my ex unavailable assclown (yes he was both)…when I broke up with my him for not finalizing his divorce after being separated for half a decade, he participated in an orgy with his harem, who had interfered with our relationship from the very beginning, and he also signed me up for a dating website and created a fake profile for me stating I was overweight and a lesbian. (keep in mind hes almost 40!)

    All it did was cement my decision to have no contact with him and to boot him from my life permanently. Good riddance douchebag!

  89. selkie says:

    Wow, that’s a new one for the hall of shame AC shit maneuvers I’ve seen here. How terrible. Is that even legal? Be thankful it’s over with him. A future with him would of been a soul sucking misery. Leave him in the gutter with his harem.

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Tired of dealing with family drama or waiting for them to spontaneously combust in to changed people? Need to find ways to step back and take proactive steps to redefine the relationship from your end? This 30-Day project will help you do just that.