Monday, November 10, 2008

ASK SYBD: My Ex Claims to Want to Be Friends but Why is S/He acting Like This?


When we split up we don't always get the answers we need or want. People (our exes) often say things to us to try to soften the blow...things like they "still care" about us and that they still want us in their lives, but why then do some of them act in the direct opposite way to those wants?

Each week, there are many posts on SYBD that reflect this sort of sentiment - where the dumpee is left asking "why is s/he behaving like this?"

Many times a dumper will SAY they want to be friends and sometimes they even mean it, but sometimes they don't. Unfortunately.

It's not uncommon to feel like you're getting a mighty cold shoulder or even freezed-out once the break-up has occurred.

This can mean the dumper doesn't want to be friends - but it can also mean they simply feel awkward, embarrassed, confused and a whole host of other emotions. It's not always as black and white thinks it is.

So a dumpee ends up reading things into the situation that aren't in fact there and they blame themselves for their ex's inability to communicate effectively and positively - when in fact it may have nothing to do with them.


If a new person is on the scene (e.g. and you've been replaced) then it's more than likely that their free time is taken up with Mr or Miss New. Or that the new

This is why the general rule of thumb is to make a clean break - at least until such time as you can handle being "friends" yourself.


A lot of time a dumper may not want to be in contact with their ex anymore is the sense of guilt they feel for causing the pain, turmoil or upheaval. So they do what they feel is best and disappear.


Splitting up can be confusing - even for a dumper. Even if they (and sometimes you) - know it's for the best that the split happens - seeing each other can cause all sorts of confusing emotions to rise to the surface. If chemistry has been good - then it's likely to rise to the surface too.

This is why we hear of the ole "sex with the ex" chestnut. Which can be totally fine if you're both on the same page about it. But in many cases a dumpee will try to use sex as a way of convincing an ex to get back together. That trick seldom works and the dumpee ends up feeling used.


Dumpees often feel terribly hurt post break up, it's only natural. But what they dont' realize that in spite of the way their ex may be behaving - they're hurting too in many occasions. Just because they're ACTING like they don't give a toss about you - doesn't meant they don't. Often acting like they don't care is simply a protective mechanism from showing they actually do care.

Yes I know your ex may be behaving like the spawn of Satan - and acting like they really don't care - but chances are, deep down they do. They just have a funny way of showing it at times.


So really, at the end of the day, it's wise to not analyze what a dumper is feeling and why they are behaving in this way or that. We end up second guessing and guessing wrong.

Case in point...I once had a guy go AWOL on me. Literally one day he vanished in a way that many on SYBD would be shocked by. His behavior would be labeled "bad" by most around this site.

Though I admit it hurt at the time, about a year later, we became good friends and he confessed why he'd acted in the way he had. It had NOTHING to do with me. Once he told me his reasoning it all made sense.

But at some point just after he left I just kindly reminded myself over and over "this is not about me." Because in most cases - it isn't. So all those early days/weeks (or what have you) after it happened, that I spent trying to read his mind (and actions), was all wasted energy.

You can never get behind someone else's eyes. Once I stopped trying to work out my ex's behaviors - I was able to "go with the flow" and it's resulted in me being able to be friends with every guy I dated in the past decade. In no case did it happen straight away. In some of the cases they acted like I had the plague...But as time goes on, dust settles and it's easier to be open and honest when some water has passed under the bridge.

Good luck...and let me leave you with a wonderful excerpt from Wayne Dyer's CHANGE YOUR THOUGHTS CHANGE YOUR LIFE book:

"Let the world unfold without always attempting to figure it all out. Let relationships just be, for example, since everything is going to stretch out in Divine order. Don't try so hard to make something work - simply allow. Don't always toil at trying to understand your mate, your children, your parents, your boss, or anyone else, because the Tao is working at all times. When expectations are shattered, practice allowing that to be the way it is. Recognize that some of your desires are about how you think your world should be, rather than how it is in that moment. Become an astute observer...judge less and listen more. Take time to open up your mind to the fascinating mystery and uncertainty that we all experience." (PG 5)

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