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Recent Letter to the ElderWisdomCircle™

DATING/RELATIONSHIP: Can't seem to move on
Letter #: 403718
Category: Dating/Relationship

Original Letter

I am a 20 year old girl. I was with my ex-boyfriend for 2 years. He is an incredibly sweet person and we never fought. I thought we had a good relationship and I could start to picture spending my life with him. However, he unfortunately fell out of love and broke up with me on January 2nd this year (2017). I did not see this coming. As always, he was sweet and compassionate about it and he tried to reassure me and make it easy on me. He was not perfect, but he was definitely a catch. 

Almost 5 months after, I still can't get over the break up. I no longer have pictures of him and we haven't talked in months. However, part of me still feels like we are together or that we will get back together. I am conscious that this will not happen, but I still can't help it and I think about it everyday. He made me feel great and always helped me with any problem I had. He was also my best friend and I now feel incredibly lonely. I've heard from mutual acquaintances that he is now seriously dating another girl. This is really painful too. I really wish that he will be happy with her and I truly wish I could move on like he did. 

I've been told that I am young and I will find someone else, but I really don't know how to move on. I have been sad almost everyday all of this time. I try to distract myself, spend time with my friends and family, yet I always end up being sad. I try not to show it, but I can't truly enjoy any activity I do with the people I care about. I don't want to date other people yet. The idea of dating makes me miss my ex-boyfriend and I really cannot see myself. I know this is temporary, but it is truly exhausting. 

Would you have any tips for moving on? Thank you for your time. I appreciate it a lot.

Elder Response

I am sorry that you find yourself in this situation Lizzie.  The loss of relationships is never easy and it can take some time to recover. It is good that you realize that you will not get back together, but emotionally the break can be more challenging.  Moving on is often a conscious decision, and when you get tired of thinking about him, you will begin to move on.  It is good that you have friends and family for support.  It is also good that you stated that you do not want to date others "yet." This means you do see this as a possibility in your future. You also recognize that this situation is temporary and that is good.  

Sometimes we don't recognize the numerous losses that occur when relationships end.  You have not only lost a romantic partner, but also a friend.  Also, you have lost the normal structure of your day; the visits, the phone calls, the text messages.  In addition, you have lost the future that you were planning for yourself, and that loss of a future can bring about pretty intense grief.  When you look forward, the future looks empty and blank.  However, you will begin to reestablish a future when you begin to make choices in your life.  You always have the power to make choices.

I think relationships are learning experiences.  They only work if both people desire them, and if only one wants the relationship it simply doesn't work.  Hopefully you have learned that you can't make someone want to be with you.  That has to come voluntarily, and you probably don't want to be with someone who doesn't desire to be with you.  Taking what you learned in this relationship will help you in your future.

I am impressed with you ability to look at this situation rationally and logically.  I urge you to take one day at a time and to place yourself in situations where you can interact with others.  I know that can be difficult at this time, but you can always decided to "fake it until you make it."  The intensity of the feelings you currently have will diminish over time and life will get better.

I hope some of this helps and I wish you the best for your future.  Take care.

Best Regards,

DonM


    

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