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She didn't give me a reason

Posted by Meredith Goldstein  January 26, 2011 09:00 AM

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Chat at 1. And I promise to be there.


Q: This girl and I had been dating for about 10 months and things were starting to get serious. We loved hanging out. We were consistently on the phone with each other when one of us was out of town for business or vacation. We spent each night at my place or hers. We talked about taking the next step.

Then, two months ago, I was over at her place. We had just made some dinner and were on the couch watching a movie. I noticed that she was being unusually quiet. When I asked what was up, she started bawling her eyes out. Completely out of left field. When I asked what was wrong she gave me an "it's not you it's me" kind of response. She said, "I don't know if I can keep you happy." We had been dating for 10 months -- I don't think I would have been with her that long if that was the case!

After that, the friends I had met her through asked what had happened. My response? I have no idea. After putting some thought into it, I came up with three theories: 1. She is a career-driven woman and wants to focus on that; 2. She is really confused and doesn't know what she wants; and 3. There is some one else. Our mutual friends say I should rule out that third option because she would never do that to me.

Since that night two months ago, she has sent me e-mails and the occasional text message. Normal stuff – "How was your holiday," etc. Being polite, I do respond. Then there's no response for a few week, then I get another e-mail.

Should I respond to these e-mails? Should I just let this die? Mind you, I still have not received a solid response about why she wanted to break it off. This is why I am bloody confused.


– Bloody Confused, Quincy

A: I'm also bloody confused, BC, but I like your three theories. My guess is that it's No. 2 or 3.

My advice is to send her an e-mail explaining what's going on in your head. Something like, "Hey there -- I'm sort of a mess, not knowing exactly what happened with us. I'd appreciate a real answer, even if it hurts my feelings. And I hope you understand that because of our break-up, I just need space without e-mails and texts."

If she writes back, take it from there. If not -- or if she gives you the same vague breakup lines -- assume theory No. 2 is correct and accept that her emotional status isn't going to change.

I'm sorry it ended this way, and she owes you so much more than tears and confusing statements. But please, unless she shows up asking for forgiveness, let this go. The answer is that she isn't giving you what you need anymore, so you mourn and start looking for someone else.

And if you're really going nuts, get your friends on the case. Yes, it puts them in the thick of an awkward conflict, but that's what friends are for. Sometimes you just need a good middle man.

Ugh. A note to everyone: when you break up with someone, tell them why -- so they don't have to send this letter.

Readers? How do you move on without a reason? Is the letter writer missing a theory? What's the meaning of her texts and e-mails? Should the letter writer involve the mutual friends? Is that too much to ask? Discuss.


– Meredith


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ABOUT LOVE LETTERS: Welcome to Love Letters, the place for love advice (giving and getting). Globe relationship columnist Meredith Goldstein and Boston.com readers are ready to take your letters and tell you what's what. Have a question? Click here to submit or email us at loveletters@boston.com.
Blogger Meredith Goldstein

Meredith Goldstein is a Boston Globe columnist who follows relationship trends and entertainment. She offers daily advice on Love Letters — and welcomes your comments. Meredith is also the author of "The Singles," a novel about complicated relationships. Follow Meredith at www.meredithgoldstein.netand on Twitter. Love Letters can be found in the print edition of The Boston Globe every Saturday in the G section.

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