Friday, February 19, 2010

To the Reader Who Submitted a Question (which I Somehow Lost)

You're the reader who submitted a question about a man you once dated quite seriously, who later got involved with someone else. After that relationship ended, he started up with you again, only to tell you that the other woman was his 'soulmate.'

The bottom line was, he says he doesn't want to take things further with you. You love him, and you're confused and hurt.

(I hope I remember all the details correctly.)

First, let me apologize profusely for having somehow hit the wrong button, which sent your very important question (which was, essentially, how do you get him to change his mind?) into some never-ending rabbit hole.

I am so sorry.

I am also sorry about the situation with this man, but the worst thing you can do is try to convince him that you're the woman for him. Trust me. The more you do this, the more he'll be convinced the other woman really is the soul mate who got away.

You're in a lot of pain, obviously, so the best thing you can do is take extremely good care of yourself. Treat yourself as a treasure yet to be discovered (in other words, if you actually were with this guy, how would you want him to treat you? Treat yourself that way.)

You'd do well to stay busy. I think it's way too early to try to be this guy's supportive friend, and if you do it in the hopes that he'll come to his senses that you're the woman for him, I fear you'll be disappointed.

Fill your time with good, supportive, fun people who make you laugh. Avoid any living person needles you by bringing his name up out of the blue, as in, "Have you heard from X?" Or, "So what's going on with you and X?" (Tell people who love you and make the mistake of bringing him up that you're moving on and have taken his name out of your vocabulary.)

Also, avoid people who try to justify his behavior as a reason for you to be patient, as in, "You know, he's afraid of getting hurt. Give him time."

Guess what? Everybody (including you, I imagine) is afraid of being hurt.

Stop worrying about him. Stop talking about him altogether. Do your best to stop thinking of him.

Please let this guy go. In your absense, it's possible he'll miss you. If he does, tread very carefully with him. Don't rush into his arms. Guard your heart.

If he doesn't miss you, well, you'll be that much farther along in enjoying your new life --and all its possibilities -- without him.

Never underestimate the power of letting go. You'll get stronger, for one thing. If you treat yourself well (instead of the rejected girl or the loser at love) and open yourself to the possibility that there's someone out there who you wouldn't have to arm-twist into seeing your greatness, you will become used to being treated well. You will have raised your standards.

And that also is a powerful thing. It's also attractive.

I wish you all the luck in the world, and if you have a chance, drop me a line and let me know how you're doing.

2 comments:

Ronnie Ann Ryan - The Dating Coach said...

Terry - honestly this is great advice as I have come to expect from you. Self care is key. And not making excuses for his behavior is crucial!

To me the words "soul mate" are not one, but two four letter words. The idea is the cause of so much angst and heart break. I don't believe there is only one special person for each individual.

What I do know is that a lot of time and potentially good relationships have short-changed chasing this illusion. If this guy wants to follow his pipe dream - let him!

I agree totally with Terry - never try to convince a man to stay. if he doesn't think you are the prize - you don't want him either.

The Cheap Gourmet said...

This is great advice that I am sending to someone I care very much about. She seems to be stuck in a relationship that's going nowhere while her man determines if she is "fit" to hold his heart. I'm glad I found this today and hope your words make a positive impact about her current situation. Thanks for sharing your insight and relationship wisdom!