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I want a face-to-face breakup

Posted by Meredith Goldstein  July 11, 2013 08:32 AM

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Q: Meredith,

I met Kyle when I was 13 (I'm 22 now). He was a summer fling, almost every summer; the kind that gets overly romanticized to the point where I was building him up in my head to be something which, as I later found out, was obviously inaccurate.

Last summer, Kyle and I reconnected and quickly started dating while we were both home in New York. We kept our relationship going through my senior year of college while I was in Boston, which wasn't easy, but I felt like the time and effort was well worth it, as I had initially planned to move back to New York come May.

A few weeks before my college graduation (Marathon Monday, to be exact), Kyle very abruptly broke things off. Through a text. While under the influence of marijuana. He had been visiting me in Boston the day before this happened and everything was completely normal.

We had a brief phone conversation after that, where he claimed to be extremely depressed (which was news to me) and that the break-up was in my best interest, despite the fact that I did not actually want to part ways.

Out of fear of looking desperate, I cordially agreed, cut my ties, and never really looked back. It's been about a few months since all of this transpired and I'd be lying if I said it didn't still affect me. I loved and cared about Kyle very much, to the point where I was making life decisions (like the one to move back to NY) around him. I feel like I was tricked into believing our relationship was a lot more serious than he obviously perceived it to be, and I'm still angry that someone I loved would treat me with such a lack of respect.

I think I would like some kind of official closure, but to be honest, I am extremely hesitant to reach out and ask anything from the person whose let me down the most. None of the break-up conversations happened face-to-face and part of me wants that kind of conversation, just to humanize the situation. But he is in New York and I am in Boston, and I don't know if the coordination (if he would even agree to speak to me) would be worth it. Do I reach out? Or find closure on my own?

– Still angry, Boston


A: Kyle understood that your relationship was getting serious. He certainly knew that you were making life choices with him in mind. And that's why he ended it -- because he realized he wasn't up to the challenge. At the moment, no matter how he feels about you, he's the kind of guy who gets high and breaks up with someone via text.

If you really need to see Kyle again, do it the next time you're in New York anyway. I'm all for in-person breakups, but I can't support you spending money to travel to see him right now. Just know that when you do eventually see him, you won't get "official closure" because there's no such thing. You might get a genuine apology or a lengthier explanation of his decision, but there's nothing he can say to put you at ease.

I'm sorry this didn't work out. And I'm not going to patronize you by saying, "Oh whatever, you're only 22." You loved Kyle, and you spent a year getting excited about being with him. He really let you down.

That said, I'm so glad he ended this before you moved to New York to be with him. Now you can make selfish decisions, which is exactly what you should be doing at your age. Where do you want to live? What do you want to try?

Please grieve this loss and then start thinking about yourself. It's a great time to be self-absorbed.

Readers? Should she arrange to see him in person? If so, when? How could someone dump their girlfriend via text on Marthon Monday? What should she do? Help.

– 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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