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Elliott, LPCC, NCC
Elliott, LPCC, NCC, Psychotherapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 7664
Experience:  35 years of experience as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, National Certified Counselor and a college professor.
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ive recently broken up with my girlfriend of 3 years and 7

Customer Question

ive recently broken up with my girlfriend of 3 years and 7 months...i've read all the stuff online,leave them alone,dont talk to them at all and they will start talking to you etc and try get back together..thats great,only thing is she wants to stay friends...secondly i work with ehr so is hard to avoid her and i wonder how she could start to miss me if we see each other daily?ive strted talking to her today casue i felt really bad in work ignoring her? i really want her back but dont wanna spoil my chances
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Rafael M.T.Therapist replied 2 years ago.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Hello, I am Rafael. Thanks for asking your question - I'm here to support you. (Information posted here is not private or confidential but public).

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I am very sorry to know about your break up.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Could you please tell me more about your situation?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Which were the core issues that led you to end the relationship, and what was her biggest mistake for you to decide to totally ignore her?

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

basically she just said she didnt want to see me anymore last weekend and just wanted to be friends

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i havent wanted to ignore her..i've just read alot that you should cut contact immediately to save ruining a chance of getting back with her.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I see, that's very frustrating and shocking. You mean she did not explain her reasons to end the relationship?

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

but as we work together it lasted a couple of days and i have had to talk to her and try and like nothing has happened becasue i know she wants to still be friends with me and i find it hard to be nasty in any way to her

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I am sorry to know you have been doing that. There is a lot of information online and many times people, including friends could suggest that, but I would never recommend it as a wise approach at all.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

all she said on break up...is

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i am too nice and tried too hard to be the perfect boyfriend

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

so i ahvent a clue

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

It is very concerning to see you have been willingly trying to ignore her and to be nasty towards her, that's very dysfunctional.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i thought also with talking to her in work,trying to have somesort of normality there would be less hostility between us and she'd feel more comfortable to talk to me if she did want to think about getting back

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i dont know what is best to not ruin any chances

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i havent bothered texting her at all or anything or talking outside of work casue i wanna give her space? and maybe somehow time to miss me?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Right, I do not see how you becoming nasty like that could promote any chance to reconcile at all, rather you would be pushing her away even more.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i ahvent been physically or verbally nast towards her

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

be avoiding her is being nasty to me casue i am usually the total opposite

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

One think is to respect boundaries and limits, her decision not continue in the relationship, and another very different to ignore her and become nasty.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I see.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I do think the way she ended the relationship was immature, insensitive and hurtful,, since as an adult, after a long terms relationship, the minimum that a person could expect is to get a good reason for such a radical decision without giving the chance to work on it.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

But there is nothing you could do about that, regardless of how wrong she was ending it the way she did...

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

hello?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

But what you can do is to reflect on which could have been the core issues that led to her decision, and focus on improving yourself at those levels. It does not mean that you would push her at all. Both extremes, ignoring and pushing her are dysfunctional, since they are not consistent with the love you feel for her.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Hello, I am here.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Can't you read my input?

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

yes i can now

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Good

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

so basically i should just carry on being normal with her in work?normal friendly or not too over friendly?

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

and would you ignore,well not ignore...but not make initial contact with her by text etc outside of work unless she chosses to?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Then, I was saying that the only way to promote your chances, in case she really wants to give you any, would be to be fully consistent with the affection you have for her,

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Fully respect her boundaries, and do take good care of yourself, meaning that you would not expose yourself to sharing with her in ways that would not help you to be and feel fine.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i'm kinda stuggling here...because in all honesty ive only ever been guilty for loving her too much and like she said trying too hard to be perfect and make things perfect for her

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

SO you would respect her boundaries and set and keep your own boundaries.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Then, your core mistake was to spoil this person, and she has told you that, correct?

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i cant take that as the main reason,i cant tell if anything she may ahve said is true casue i know most of this time this wouldnt be the real reason

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

if i got her back i could take that into account and not poil her...fair enough....but its just getting her back.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Love if real love, or healthy love could never be too much, but when it becomes distorted in any way, like because of codependency for example, it does not help but fuels dysfunctional relationships.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

says you are still typing?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

The only effective way I know to promote real chances for reconciliation into a healthy relationship, is by carefully assessing your actions and role you played in it, identifying mistakes, and coming to terms with how reciprocal and healthy was the other person towards you. If after doing that you see that the other person was respecting, loving and truly caring about you, but could not continue because of your mistakes, then you could have hope you would have a new chance if you change, but if your personal issues if any, or her problems undermining the relationship remain the same, it would be unrealistic to expect things would evolve just fine.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i know its more on ehr side for not trying that hadnt made it work....

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I am here, can you see my text?

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

and i know she has diificulty showing any sort of love which frustrated me and made me feel lonely

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

she has difficulties in any relationship matters,that clear as i am the only person she really talks to in work,she's very quiet and likes her own company.a loner if you like

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Then if she was the one that did not reciprocate your love then it is concerning, since it means she does not truly feel she wants to be in the relationship, not because of any problem with you, but because of her lack of affection and passion for you.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I see, then she has serious personal issue around communication, sociability and coping.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i think...only me and had told her in the past i thought she had social anxiety disorder

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i'd always talk things over and try change anything to make her happy if i could but nothing was ever talked about..she'd just shrug her shoulders

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Then please, if you at least expect a friendship, do not ignore her like that, since that would mean you do not care and want to retaliate because of her decision, while she even asked you to stay friends.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

should i still be there for her like always? i mean i'd like to but i think that would firmly put me out of being able to get back together as a couple

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

most of the women in work ive spoke to,well all of them are very very surprised she ended it and not the other way around.i'm the only person who has ever taken an interest in her and loved her.i am her first relationship also btw

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Then I do agree with you that she may suffer of intense anxiety, and perhaps a serious avoidance issue related to it, and if that is the case, as I said before, ignoring or being nasty towards her would be the worst approach here, showing her that you do not care but only wanted to keep her as your possession, that now that she ended the relationship, you could be this way since you are not getting what you want.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

so again how should i go about in work and outside of work to not ruin any chances?

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

should i text her?she already knows how much i think of her? i dont think i need to hassle her and annoy her?

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

by the way....i did get her away for 5 mins yesterday after work to apologise for the ignorance becasue i didnt know how to be with her

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Then this person is still very inexperienced and has a real problem with anxiety and social avoidance. If you truly feel it is worthy because of what you feel and who she is as a person, then I do suggest you not to ignore nor become nasty towards her, but to be consistent showing that your love and caring is not that selfish and depends on her pleasing you. It does not mean you would become codependent and spoil her. No , it means you would offer a healthy friendship respecting her boundaries, while keeping your own ones.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Absolutely, do not push her at all, give her the space she needs and wants, be a mature and assertive friend.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

so dont tect her and just leave it until she does me first?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Then you were wise taking responsibility for your unhealthy actions, clarifying things.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

and i think ido kinda get more what you are saying...and it probably has made it alot more complex situation becasue of ehr anxieties?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

You could text her once or twice a week, if you feel you can handle that and she feels OK with it.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i could text her all day but like you side i am trying to respect her boundaries...i am presuming she will talk to me if she feels the need to?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Absolutely, if she dos=es have social anxiety-avoidance, your approach would be the worst anybody in your shoes could have towards her, it would literally be like retaliating because of her decision, which is incompatible with any form of healthy love.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

so if i tect her say now,that would be fine?

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

its been 6 days by the way since break up

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Correct, that's her role. if she chooses to reciprocate your mature and respectful friendship and caring within those boundaries, then good for you. You cannot and should not try to control her but only your own actions and choices, so if you do a good job around that, everything else would depend on her, if she really deserves and wants you back, and you show to really love her, then you would have a good chance for reconciliation, time will tell.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i wish i had know this before!

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i know her condition has made things ten times harder!

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I think so, as long as you respect he boundaries, do not push her and keep taking good care of yourself, it should be fine. Remember that right now she has decided to have you as her friend only, so that should be the role you play, without denying your hopes to get a new chance, but being respectful as a healthy and mature adult.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Read about avoidant personality disorder. I do not know if she has that, but seems she has many traits of it, and for sure high levels of anxiety and poor social skills. It could help you a lot understanding and supporting her in healthy ways.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

ive tried getting her to read books for help before but she wont bother or see dr

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

maybe me knowing about it could be the only thing that could possibly help her.even weithout ehr knowing i know more about it

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Please read about this disorder and it could open your eyes a lot, explaining what could be the core issue here.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Right

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

alreadt googling.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

These are the core symptoms: Hypersensitivity to criticism or rejection, feeling inadequate, Social isolation and extreme shyness in social situations.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

have just text her,just a smiley face maybe to show i am thinking of her....she hasnt text back...which in turn has made me feel ten times worse now that i shouldve just carried on ealving her alone

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

That's what I mean when I said that you need yo take good care of yourself while working on it, otherwise it would not be healthy for you either.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

she has tect back now,sorry

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

...you need to take good care...

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

OK

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i get very worried when people dont reply to me and often think i ahve upset them

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Then please also read about codependency, that could be a core issue you have affecting you and your relationships.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

how can i get her to know ive tried so hard to figure out my mistakes and go to this effort to make things work?without telling her i presume?

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i cant exactly say ive looke dup these disorders you may have?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

You could write a letter-message to her, not being pushy, just showing insight and caring, support and understanding, as well as commitment to work on yourself to make real improvements, and that's why even as a friend, you would truly appreciate her feedback for you to work on yourself.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Does it make sense?

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

not sure.i dont think a letter is that appropriate

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i just wish she knew i had looked all this up to show how much work i am willing to do and information i would get and change to help her

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

or make her life more easier

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Then commit to do as we discussed before, it would be through your consistent actions that she would know about your changes and willingness to be supportive and respectful.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Make your actions talk about it.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i cant really help her and learn about the disorders though unless i am back with her? or at least spending time with her>?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

You can learn about these disorder whether you happen to be with her or not, and your work on yourself should not depend on her taking you back,

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Could you please tell me about your rating my support as poor?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I have been here and I am willing to support you as much as possible, and would like to know about your experience reflecting your rating as such.

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i just dont think its that good,the only thing i ahve got out of it is the diagnosis of the 'possible' disorders....i knew she probably has disorders..and i know its them and her that ahve stopped us having a 'normal' relationship already

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

i really wanted toknow how to really go about getting her back somehow

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

reading about the disorders are only gonna be useful if she did come back...and even then will just make her life easier,not mine becasue she wont seek help for them

JACUSTOMER-2yqeq31f- :

no worries though,doenst matter

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I am sorry to hear that. I have carefully explained to him what appears to be the best approach to have here and what you should avoid not to push her eve further away, and trying to explain possible anxiety and mental problems that could have been affecting her in this situation.

Expert:  Elliott, LPCC, NCC replied 2 years ago.
Seeking expert testimony is a sign of strength. A personal relationship with a caring professional is proven clinically effective.

Dear friend,

I think it is important to normalise your relationship at work. If you follow the advise of those who tell you to play those immature games of ignoring the other person, then you will appear to be equally juvenile and will certainly not look like a man who can rise to the occasion and adjust your behaviour to fit the new reality of the situation

Perhaps you may never get back with her, but if you ignore her at work you will help her to justify her decision to leave you, and will give the appearance to her and other co-workers that you are easily defeated and cannot bounce back.

It is not a question of compensating with over-enthusiasm, but rather of demonstrating your dignity, self-esteem, and sense of propriety and civil behaviour. Everyone will note that, especially her.

You do have a basis of friendship and intimacy that will bolster any possible rekindling of your relationship. If you squander that on a no contact or minimum contact at work, you will spoil any chances of reconciliation.

Getting back into communication is the first step and you have a unique opportunity to do this because of your shared workspace.

Being friendly and civil is a great start. Let iT build and perhaps you will re-establish a closer bond.

Positive energy, enthusiasm, and showing yourself to be a man who can hold his head high in the face of adversity will certainly get her to take notice.

After that, it is up to the both of you.

I wish you great success and shall keep you both in my prayers.

Warm regards,

Elliott, MAE, LPCC, NCC, CCMHC

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