Was Breaking Up The Right Decision?

was breaking up the decision

Well, there’s always the fact that your ex treated you pretty shabbily over the course of your relationship. Sure, the end of your relationship was fairly low-key and non-dramatic but the circumstances that lead you there were painful as hell. In your case, SCST, your ex was kind of an asshole to you. She treated you with some serious disrespect over the course of the time you were apart.

It was clear that she saw the relationship as an increasingly low priority and treated you as an afterthought. If she was having thoughts about being in a long-distance relationship, she could have brought those up directly or she could have done the honorable thing and ended the relationship herself. Letting contact dry up and pretending that there weren’t any problems – especially when it’s causing you actual distress – is a pretty shitty thing to do to someone you care about.

To my mind, it’s somewhat rich that she’s giving you grief over the fact that you’ve cut ties when she was doing the same thing to you. The only difference is that she was performing the death of a thousand cuts, while you cut the head off in one go. So while you are cutting her off and taking the Nuclear Option may have hurt her, that was hurt that she earned.

I think you did the right thing, SCST. The point of The Nuclear Option – removing them from your social media, blocking their number, filtering their emails, and otherwise cutting contact – isn’t about “we broke up and now you’re dead to me”.

It’s an acknowledgment that break-ups hurt and you need time to let those wounds heal. Those wounds can’t close if you’re continually picking at the scabby Facebook stalking them to see if they’re dating anyone or reminding yourself about how much you miss them by following their adventures on Instagram. Nor, for that matter, can you heal if they keep coming around and reopening the wounds, whether they intend to or not.

That’s why many times the best thing you can do is lock them away. It doesn’t need to be forever, but it does need to be long enough for you to do what you need to in order to heal. And while it may suck for the other party… they don’t get a say in things. Your healing process is for you, not them.

And while we’re at it, your emotions aren’t a democracy. Other people don’t get a vote in how you feel or what relationships you want to pursue. You’re not obligated to be friends with somebody after you break up with them, just because they want you to.

To be blunt: if your ex wanted to stay friends after the break-up, then she should’ve acted like one before you broke up.

Good luck.

Breaking up is not always a mistake
Breaking up is not always a mistake

Question 2

Hey Doc,

I am a 27-year-old male with very limited dating experience due to a combination of mild disability, career focus, and self-limiting beliefs. I’ve put in a lot of work to improve things, and as a result, my confidence and energy are up. I’ve even been approached by gay men. Being straight, I wasn’t interested, but it certainly increased my confidence in being able to land a good woman.

Some members of my friend group, possibly having noticed my increased confidence and energy, and have recently made remarks of how I and a single friend of theirs should ‘totally get together’. I’m not sure if they’re joking or legit trying to set the two of us up. She and I are compatible (similar views on money, similar interests, trust each other, have never had drama, approach conflict in a similar way) and we like each other on a platonic level. This friend group even already contains couples, so it wouldn’t make anything awkward in that regard.

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Harris O’Malley

Harris O' Malley is a dating coach who provides geek dating advice at Paging Dr. NerdLove, as well as on Kotaku  and elsewhere. He and his work has been featured on Nightline, Vice, The Guardian, New York Magazine, The Huffington Post, Wired, Sex Nerd Sandra, Daily Life, Slate, The Austin-American Statesman, Austin Monthly, Geek and Sundry, Boing Boing, Everyday Feminism, Buzzfeed, The Daily Dot, The Washington Post, Kotaku, Lifehacker, NeilStrauss.com, The Good Man Project, MTV’s Guy Code, The Harvard Business Journal, and many others. Paging Dr. NerdLove has been featured as one of the top 10 dating blogs on DatingAdvice.comView Author posts