How To Get Over Your Ex-Girlfriend Moving On

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How To Get Over Your Ex-Girlfriend Moving OnSeeing your ex girlfriend move on before, you yourself, are ready to take that next step, is a painful experience. It hurts to see someone who was once your closest companion moving on to new things and new people. And it can be devastating to realize that she’s moving on in her life, and you’re clinging on to the past. It might cause you to ask yourself: how do I deal with her moving on? And how long is it going to take to get over her?

The truth is, it’s going to take a while. Meanwhile, the thought of her being intimate with another guy haunts your mind. If you see her together with someone else, you might think your world will cease to exist.

Here’s the thing though.

You world will not cease to exist.

It will hurt, and you will survive. Breakups hurt, and you’re going to need to acknowledge that some things are going to make you feel sad. You can’t control your emotions, but you can control your reponse. The key is to allow yourself to feel sad once in a while, but not let it determine the course of your life. You can choose not to suffer. 

Right now, I want you to make a promise to yourself. Tell yourself “It’s okay to be sad, but I choose not to suffer.” Say it out loud and say it in your head when you start to feel overwhelmed.

If you haven’t already, read my guide on how to get over a breakup for men.

Now here are some tips for dealing with an ex-girlfriend that’s moving on.

Go No Contact

The golden rule to a rapid breakup recovery: no contact. You see, a relationship is an emotional addiction. It can have a lot of positive effects on your life if you’re in a healthy relationship. But when faced with rejection, the negative sides of the addiction rears its head.  If your relationship wasn’t that healthy to begin with, the addictive symptoms are likely to be even more severe. If she left you for another guy, even more so. Cold turkey no contact is the best strategy for you for now. This will prevent you from re-triggering your pain and resetting your recovery. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking you can be friends!

Acknowledge Your Feelings

Having a hard time dealing with an ex girlfriend that’s moving on often goes hand in hand with a host of other feelings. You might be experiencing, among other things, embarrassment, anxiousness or anger. It’s crucial that you come to accept that it’s okay to feel that way. It’s okay to feel sad, mad or confused – it’s a breakup. You’re going to be off of your game once in a while, and the sooner you accept that, the quicker you’ll get over it. Don’t try and fight or refuse the feeling. It’s part of you, if you want it to be or not. The next step is talking back to the feeling.

Engage in Positive Self Talk

Everyone has a little internal voice with which they talk to themselves. Start to take notice of what you are saying to yourself. You want to make sure you’re always using supportive, positive self talk. In order to cope with setbacks in life you need to get into the habit of talking back to yourself in a positive way. Staying positive will make you feel better, and feeling better will allow you to achieve more of the things you want in life. So catch yourself when you slip into a negative train of thoughts and turn it around!

Adopt Positive Mindsets

Every setback is a challenge. Every closed door equals an open window. Things might be hard now, but maybe this is the most valuable life lesson you’ll ever learn. Will Smith supposedly answered the question “How did you become to successful?” by saying “It’s easy because I’m black”. How’s that for a powerful mindset?

Prepare Encounters

Seeing your ex can be a stressful and debilitating experience. To be able to handle seeing your ex you must mentally rehearse what you would want yourself to do. Mentally prepare your encounters with your ex. Ask yourself the question “What would my best self do?” and plan to do just that. Stick to what you want to do, what you feel is right. Don’t confuse this with your comfort zone, because your comfort zone is likely going to be a bit too small right now. And pushing it makes you grow.

Focus on Yourself 

Your ex girlfriend is moving on, because she’s focusing on herself. The harsh truth is that you’re no longer in a reciprocal love relationship. So there’s no point in dwelling on the bond you had if you’re the only one doing so. Instead, this is a prime opportunity for you to explore beyond that and bond with new people of different walks of life. Join a team, attend a meetup, pick up a new hobby. This will get some positive momentum going in your life, and that’s the key to getting over this phase.

Let me know if this article has helped you deal with an ex-girlfriend that’s moving on, post a comment below or drop a line in the breakup forum. I love hearing from readers.

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About Jesse

Jesse is a breakup recovery coach for men. Stop suffering through your breakup, get a breakup coaching session with Jesse.


  1. Again, awesome post!

  2. This helped me alot. Thank you

  3. I’ve tried some of the advice on your site, and despite that I’m still stuck after being dumped out of a 2 year relationship.. And I mean real pressing haunting depression, it’s caused me alto of problems for my university studies and I’m just desperate to get better.. The only tthing was I failed at the no contact rule because I couldn’t bear at she left me, said one thing and acted another. Now she’s into another guy, 3 months passed and I’m still devastated.. I would keep going back to try to contact her after maybe 2 weeks eventhough I knew about the whole no contact rule. She ignored me on all but 2 counts, and it hurt me too deeply. Help?

    • JesseMartin says:

      Breaking no contact resets your progress.

      You’re still emotionally addicted to your ex and the pain you’re feeling is part of the withdrawal process. Breaking no contact equates to feeding your addiction, whereas you want to get over it.

      It hurts, and experiencing the pain you’re feeling is not a choice. Suffering, however, IS a choice. You can choose not to suffer, by acknowledging the pain and REFUSING to let it OWN you.

      No contact is KEY. If you’re not ready to commit to no contact and STICK to it. I can’t help you, nobody can. You have to reach that deepest point, and instinctively and profoundly realize, “That’s it, this is enough!”.

      If you’re there, and you can commit to NC, follow these three steps and report back here in two weeks and tell me how you feel.

      1.) Commit and stick to no contact. Commit to it day-by-day if two weeks is too daunting.
      2.) Run every single day for 30 minutes minimum.
      3.) Involve a close friend or family member in what you’re feeling, be open and honest.

      Remember: feeling pain is not a choice, suffering IS a choice.

      • Thank you for replying. I will try my very best and come back on here to update. Another thing is it was my first real serious relationship. I was 19 and I’m 21 now.. And after a few weeks of bearing with the pain I’d go back and shed hurt me again.. However I know no contact is the only way to to but even after 2 weeks of no contact I’m still utterly broken..

  4. Hi Jesse, so its been more than two weeks and I’ve been following your advice more less.. So I think it’s been almost a month (I’ve lost count) since I last tried to contact her. Anyways no contact has helped_ very much so. I’ve been able to compartmentalize my sad moments for the night drives in my car, and realize I’m better off with this. Life experience. Question is though, how am I showed to deal with the loneliness? I don’t find girls I click with easily, so I’m not just gonnatural snag a new one tomorrow. Plus, I want to learn how to be okay on my own..

    • JesseMartin says:

      Hey man,

      Where you are now in life is the sum of every decision you’ve ever made. Where you’ll be in a year from now will be that sum, plus the decisions you make from now on.

      “I don’t find girls I click with easily” is a limiting belief and nothing more than a belief. When people say something like that, what they’re usually trying to say is that meeting people does not come naturally.

      And that’s okay. It’s even to be expected. But all that stands between the current you and the you that finds it easy and enjoyable to meet other people is just a bunch of decisions you can start taking now. If, starting now, you decide to be THAT person. You will become that person.

      It takes courage. But you know what. Anything worth attaining takes courage. Courage is nothing more than doing what you know is right, despite what you feel. So if you feel uneasy and uncomfortable approaching new people, you have my permission to ignore those feelings.

      Be sincere, be open and be friendly. 99% of the people will respond the same way. 1% will be an ass, but you’ll learn that they’re not actually scary. They’re struggling internally to the degree that they can’t respond positively to an open, friendly and sincere guy. So wish them well, and move on!

      • That is true. Everyday I’m talking myself positively, accepting it and understanding it is indeed for the best. But yeah, I am slowly getting back to myself, the me I want to be again after so long. I wanted to express my sincere gratitude to you for actually taking the time to reply to my comments here even though there was no benefit on your part. I believe I’ll be okay, and this site has helped alot. I’ll be sure to refer to it time and time again and it to others who might benefit from it; cheers man.

        • JesseMartin says:

          Thanks for the kind words nic ker, I’m glad I could help out. There is one thing you could help me out with, if you’re up for it. I really want to zoom in on the important issues in my upcoming breakup ebook. You would be helping me, and others, out if you could maybe elaborate on what your biggest challenge has been/is during these tough times.

  5. Hi Jesse –
    My ex-girlfriend and I broke up 5 months ago and I’m still stuck in the same hell hole. She was my co-worker and we have been in a relationship for 2 years, in those times I see her every day because she’s located just beside my workstation. But after we broke up I asked to be transfer to another team so I wouldn’t see her anymore. She dumped me. I have tried moving on but I’m finding it hard to do so. Whenever I tried No Contact, she keeps contacting me, inviting me to dinner. So I was thinking maybe we have another chance, but when I’m trying to get close to her again, she’s pulling away. It’s a vicious cycle, whenever I’m trying to move on I was being pulled back. After 5 months I’m still no close to moving on. Help me.

    • Hey B,

      Your recovery hasn’t started yet. It starts with no contact. It starts when you say enough is enough. It starts when you say this pain is not worth it anymore. It starts when you let go of hopes of getting back together. It starts when you choose independence over dependence.

      It’s up to you. If you’re not ready to let go, I can’t help you. If you’re sick and tired of feeling like crap, then make a commitment, here and now, that you’re going to do whatever it takes to get through this. Follow these steps and report back on the blog or in the forums:
      1. Go no contact, no exceptions, no facebook, no texting, no asking friends how she is for 7 days
      2. Treat yourself like an olympic athlete for those 7 days. Eat the healthiest you possibly can, go running and hit the gym. I want you to sweat your ass off this week.
      3. Get together with some close friends or family and pour your heart out AND let them distract you.

      Again, if you’re not ready to commit, no one can help you. YOU need to do this.

  6. Hie , I had realtionship for almost an year!! She suddenly broke up with me , reason s still that appropriate , she tells lik she wsn tat attached to me , nxt tim she ll b like cud’n give my 100%, nd other time she ll be like I have been hurting you alot, I jus need to b alone for while and all, she Isn given me prosper reason for the break up, it’s almost getting to be 3 months , she Isn datin any1 also.. And in starting like after break up, v used to speak , in between I had yelled at her for nt givin me reason for putting throug ., literally abused her .., then I stopped contacting her. After week I like bumped into her , she came from front and spoke to me … This again happend again recently when I bumped at her .., and also if i text her she replies to me well and evathin..I am jus way too confused!! Bt I am jus
    love her alot!! I have no reasons to tell why I love

    • Hey Girish,

      A breakup can be really overwhelming and can lead to feelings of despair. Try to continuously ask yourself “How would my best self act?” to find out how you should hold yourself.

      Go no contact, make arrangements so you minimize the chances of walking in to her, and meditate on coming to terms with the end of the relationship. If you can’t come to terms with the end of the relationship, you’re setting yourself up for suffering.

  7. Hi jesse my gf of almost 6 yrs broke up with me about three months ago. We had just went on a beautiful long weekend trip to scottsdale Arizona. I should mention that we like to travel and we had a long distance relationship since the first of the year since we both took jobs in different cities at the same time. We were supposed to go to the bvi the end of August. I would travel to see her every few weeks . When I suggested to her that I will be out the following weekend she said she had plans with her friends and not to come. Then the next weekend she said her sister was coming to visit by the following weekend when I questioned her her on what was going on she said ok you’ve pushed me to far and I’m setting you free we are breaking up. I suspected she might have been dating prior to the trip but was not sure. It was inevitable that she had slept with someone that month after we got back and the guilt pushed her to the breakup. Well 2 weeks after the breakup we were still in contact then she must have met someone she wanted to pursue because she initiated no contact and it was devastating to me. We had broken up a few times over the years but always managed to get back after a month or so. She informed me several weeks later that she gad someone in her life and she gad moved on and was never going back. It’s been very difficult for me to let go as I made all the mistakes I’ve been trying to stay in contact with her through calling and texting emails etc . Anyway I could to try to persuade her to reconcile and drop this guy. Btw she had informed next that she had been slept with the guy very early on and that she felt our relationship at least how she felt had been over for quite some time. Just recently within the past week when I did get through to her at work she told me that she was Ina. Relationship and the she cared about him and to stop contacting her. I have tried so hard not to but I failed. I’ve been bomb boarding her with pictures of us and things we did together but I feel like she only deleted them and meant nothing to her at this point. Only now since I haven’t spoken to her in about 5 days am I just realizing that she will not be coming back ever. I want to believe that this is a rebound relationship but it’s been three months and it doesn’t seem like it. She wants a relationship because she feels comfortable in them. She is not very outgoing and takes comfort in just having one guy to hang with. She is very attractive and has a great body and could get almost any guy she is attracted to. I am devastated I thought we were close but I sensed the drift in Arizona and did nothing about it. I thought that since we had this most romantic vacation planned to the Virgin Islands that we were ok and that we were just feeling the stress from all the change. I should have realized that this girt needed constant attention and she set it in her mind that this long distance thing was not for her. It’s been over four months since we got back from Arizona and I’m still in pieces. She seems to be happy in her new relationship and doesn’t bother her that I’m in such pain. How can she be like this ? How can she move on so quickly? Do you thing this is a rebound that just has to run its course?

    • Hey Len,

      Women are wired to keep up appearances even though their body knows that the relationship is withering, or losing its appeal. She’ll not even know it, let alone be able to articulate it, but when something seemingly ‘better’ comes along, she jumps on the bandwagon.

      The fact that you were oblivious to this indicates that you were out of touch with what was going through her mind. This happens to a lot of guys and often times it’s because they become preoccupied with their own problems or because they put her needs above their own. Usually it’s a combination of both.

      Fact of the matter is you’re asking the wrong questions. She doesn’t want to be with you. That much is clear. So you shouldn’t want to be with her. It’s that simple. The fact that you still want someone that doesn’t want you back seems to suggest that you have little self worth.

      You should go no contact, get rid of the pictures and work on becoming comfortable on your own. You need to learn to love yourself before you’re able to engage in a healthy relationship.

  8. Hi Jesse, me and my girlfriend went out for 4 years and she dumped me 2 months ago because i cheated on her and she found out. Now i know i was in the wrong for doing that to her so i followed your steps like having no contact but until recently i found out that within the two months that we have broken up she has moved on and is currently in a relationship with another guy that i know…. When i found this out it hurt like hell because i couldnt understand how can she move on so quickly after a 4 year relationship , i feel crushed even though i know i was wrong but still how can she move on so quickly within 2 months i cant understand it and its realy effecting my studies at university badly cause i cant focus on anything else but on her and her new relationship……please help

    • Hey Marvin,

      First of all, you don’t know if she’s moved on or not. Certain people get into relationship after relationship and use it as a coping mechanism.

      Second of all, being cheated on can be an incredibly profound, life-changing experience. This could have set some big changes in motion for her in her life.

      And lastly, but most importantly, you’re asking the wrong questions. You’re focused on her, and her recovery. What about you? Why did you cheat? What does that say about the relationship? Do you feel bad about losing her or do you feel bad about her finding someone else? You need to explore those questions and you need to use this time to do some soul searching.

      Learning your ex has found someone else can be extremely devastating. It’s part of our biological wiring designed to make sure we don’t end up expending our valuable resources rearing some other guy’s child. It’s not applicable to the urban, affluent life we live in, however.

  9. Hey, I just went through a really bad break up . For a year and a half I always had trust issues with my ex but she comforted me and got me to trust her eventually. My biggest fear was that college would change her and that her and I would end due to other guys with a college education or because of college activities such as partying , drinking, etc. Well she told me she would never do that and that if I chose to stay with her we will work on our relationship though it all. I got over my trust issues and I beleived her. Worst mistake I made. About two weeks ago she went to an open house and basically went back on everything she said. She told me she wants to have a party life and that she would sleep with other guys no matter what I do. Its a devastating blow to me. And what makes things worse is that she said she didnt want the relationship and more because she didnt wanna work on a relationship with me though college. Well a few weeks go by and I find out she has a new guy, this devestates me because she said she was not going to do this. I’m trying to get over her but I just cant. Any help would be much appriciated I just wanna get control of the situation.

    • Hey Pat,

      She wasn’t being disingenuous at the time she said those things, she was being young and naive. For that matter, so where you for believing her.

      If you’re still holding on to her, the relationship or how it ended, you’re going to continue to suffer. Especially since she ended up with another guy. You need to accept that this is the end of the relationship. She’s shown you she doesn’t want to be with you. The important thing to remember is that you don’t want to be with someone that doesn’t want to be with you.

      Realize that the girl you fell in love with no longer exists. Go no contact and start taking control of your own happiness. Let me know on the forums how you progress.

  10. Hey Jesse,
    Great post and thanks to all the guys who posted, i read through the whole comments section and your stories have helped tremendously. It is very hard to go through this and it is nice to know there are others who understand how you feel. With that said, i have a similar yet very complicated problem. I broke up with my ex 6 yrs. ago after being in a 5yr. relationship. I have gone through the struggles of contact and no contact, it was difficult b/c I had developed a strong bond with my ex’s family, they have been supportive and just been with me through a lot of ups and downs and so has she. To make a long story short, 4 1/2 years later i moved away from home got away from it all, worked on myself and abided by the no contact rule and i was starting to feel much much better coping with it. However, just recently i moved again but this time i moved to the city my ex resides in to find a job, not to be close to her but b/c i had great job offers presented there. I moved there and my ex offered her place until i got on my feet. Well as you could guess, one thing lead to another and we got intimate. For a few months it seemed great, almost perfect like we could get back together.As it turns out, it didn’t we got into a few arguments and we drifted. Now i’m back at square one except now i am living in her apartment for now(b/c no permanent job yet) AND to make matters worse she has already moved on to a guy she likes. PLEASE HELP…i feel trapped b/c i have no place to get away to from my ex…although i have been through this show b4 it’s even more difficult now than it was the first time around….PLEASE HELP, ANY ADVICE?

    • Hey man,

      Sounds like a tough spot.

      When you’re facing a challenge, always ask yourself “Is this something I can control?”

      In your case, if you get a job or not, is beyond your control. It’s up to some HR manager at some company you’re applying to. What you CAN control is how often you’re applying for jobs and how much effort you’re putting into getting out of that place.

  11. Hello jesse,

    amazing article, i just want some advice on my situation, the mother of my kids and I broke up april 15th the last time we’ve slept together was july 1st, but after that we stoppe. we still talked in person when she comes gets the kids or on the phone. well on october 28 i’ve found out she was sleeping with a close friend of mines which really hurt my feelings. i did not call her and cuss her out or what ever i handle it like an adult. after i found out she would try to txt me or call to have a conversation or want me to come over i choose not to because im not trying to sleep with her so i cant mess up my getting over her . i told her 2 weeks ago if its not about the kids to not call of text me. i am not friends with her on Facebook or on twitter but when someone i knows re tweets a tweets she posts i see it and recently i saw a tweet saying how she’s in love with another man which mad me a little sad. i know she is no good for me and i do not want to get back with her, im just having trouble finding someone who i can move on with and love. what steps do i take to get rid of these last bit of feelings i have for her when we have kids together?

  12. Hi, I need to get over my ex, and I understand the whole no contact rule, but I can’t do that. We have kids so I have to speak and see her when I pick them up. Any advice? Thankyou.

    • Hey Den84,

      Bring contact to an absolute bear minimum. Ask yourself “what would my best self do” and behave in that way when you have to deal with her. It’s important to stay civil and respectful in those moments that you do have to have contact.

  13. Hey Jesse, I was in a 4.5 year relationship that ended with her leaving me. The past 2 mos just like everyone else here I was sad, abandoned,lonely and just devastated. Felt like it was all my fault, the only time I felt good at all is when I talked to her or pissed her off to get an emotional response from her. She started dating and screwing someone immediately, I try to don’t the no contact rule, but our problem is we had a lot of debt together credit cards, my car our insurance, and barely have to keep in contact but we still do to make arrangements. The problem here is even this simple contact now and again throws back feelings on my side, I did however meet someone I think is great and that has really eased this whole thing on me as well , I wanted to ask you , since she was the one to walk out and all the debt was under her name, would it be wrong for me to just say adios? You hurt me and screwed everything up, now you can enjoy this? Also at the heart of it, I might have said all those crazy I care about you , I’ll always be there , yada yada things but in my heart I don’t, lol I don’t wish her happiness, I wish her to feel the same thing me and everyone here felt after she left! Any opinions?

    • Hey Adam,

      I think what you need to do here is ask yourself “what would my best self do?”.

      It sounds like you can argue it both ways and that what really matters how you feel about it at your core. Imagine if all these feelings pass over, and 10 years from now you look back, is helping her pay off the debts the moral thing to do, or not? The answer might very well be no, it doesn’t have to be yes.

      The reason I say that is that a guy’s going through bad breakups often come out of relationships where they’ve consistently put their girlfriend first. We might be able to categorize this as the same type of behavior, and if so, it would be a valuable learning experience to put yourself first for a change. On the other hand, perhaps you’ve made some agreement on this. There’s also something to be said to maintaining your integrity.

      I guess the broader point is that there is no clear answer. It’s never “always pay”, nor is it ever “never pay”. Try and see the situation without all the emotions that are attached now. What is right?

  14. What’s up Jessi just read your advice and it is great!

    Here is my story ..of 10 years of knowing someone and her family and her issues. And she leaves me cold turkey like I never existed.

    I knew this girl in high school but never gave no attention to her cause she wasn’t that attractive. After I got out of boot camp for troubled teens when I was 18 I met her. She was a meth addict and was in a relationship with a user and hanged with all drug users; including some of her family. She starts to bring me around likes me very much and won’t leave me alone. Eventually I get her off drugs and help her on a road to recovery and a better life. Then I learn that its not her its her environment and start to love her for who she is and forget about all the negative thoughts that I thought of her. This took probably two years of real young addolecint bull crap. So now I love her I saved her life and she loves me!”so I supposed” after that she start lying to me saying “we need one day apart to see ours friends” OK I say! Come to find out she is cheating on me with someone else!! I was pissed but never acknowledged it because I just did the same. Our relationship consisted of lies and cheating and breaking up a lot because of her and I would just react with the same thing.. I would break up with her move on and she would come back after realizing that guy just wanted sex she would come back and I would forgive her not because she cheated but because I know how she is. So time went on I helped her pushed her to better got our own place but never could keep it because I couldn’t trust her when I’m at work. I lost a very good job because of her but seemed to pull threw. At the end of our 10 year run we really tried to have a baby but had fertility problems which she blames me I blame her for her past drug use because of finding a meth pipe about a year and a half ago. I love her regardless of her f**k ups and she did the same for me. Our family’s were and still do talk and for Christ sake her guy cousin still rents a room from me and sometimes seeing him reminds me of her. So now its been about or almost 3 months tht we have been broke up and I still live in the past of US. I have help her financially mentally and did things for her that nobody has done. The first oppertunity she gets of having some money she changes on me. She had got 9000 from her 401k and told me we would put it twords our own place but starts to act different and I start to notice! I start pulling myself away cause I don’t care two cents about her money. So now we are starting the cycle again and now I’m devastated cause im 29 and to old for this. I give her space to realize but don’t do the same because we are trying to have a baby; and others no need for that. Come to find out after 3 weeks she brought some guy to Thanksgiving and nobody told me or stood up for me. Wtf.. I was going crazy mentally and was not thinking good thoughts but now don’t feel like hurting no one. Thank god!! So now I try my best not to contact her but go threw some real depression and can’t seem to get over how she did me.. if like im nothing.. my drive of achieving and my mental health has dimminsed. I have ran threw all my money and ruined my job once again because of this women and she seems to just be happier then ever (is what I hear). I stop contacting her after Christmas and just partied like hell and just last week contacted her and she replied “just be happy good thing fall apart so better things can fall together” wtf and oh yea she text me happy birthday love always… what a f**kin joke I never replied but gave in a few weeks later after the partying stopped. After I broke rule #1 I started to feel the pain again real bad even thought of suicide. I can’t seem to stop thinking of this women and blaming her for my abuse of alcohol and cocaine. If the coke is the while I’m drunk I do it just not to feel the betrayal. I want her out of my heart forever because now I realize she is nothing but poison to me and never treated me as a king and I could not do the same for her. Pls jess give me your advice and help me from this demon three lives in my heart. Its seems to me tht these women can’t be trusted at any cost. I am damaged and left for dead.

  15. Hey man,

    Thanks for sharing your story.

    What I talk about frequently on this blog is how the way your parents displayed affection helps to define your model of affection growing up. If, somehow, your childhood was disrupted or your parents where overwhelmed by circumstances, you might have evolved a dysfunctional model for affection as a result.

    Once you’re using a dysfunctional model, you feel drawn to others with a compatible, equally distorted model a.k.a. your ex. You might realize that the relationship is not good for you, but on a deeper level there’s this undeniable attraction: at least this is familiar.

    I don’t think she’s the cause of your drug use. My guess is that you were using her the same way you were using the drugs: to escape something else in your life, presumably in your past. Both sound compulsive and addictive.

    What you need to do is a detoxification, no contact and no drugs. And explore your feelings from a place of clarity. Hard? Probably. But it’s probably what’s right for you right now.

  16. Hey jesse,I’ve gone through all the coments here and really appreciate how you tackle really thankful…mine is a little bit different. My “possessive” gf who changed from the sweet angel I met 10months ago to this aggressive and insulting lady initiated a huge break in our relationship after she spied on me and concluded I was cheating (I wasn’t). She insulted me on a text one week ago saying all sorts of nasty things which I didn’t reply or call back. She didn’t also call back…
    Now the issue at hand is that some of her clothes and are in my apartment,she didn’t say we’re over and I’m worried sick cos I still love her but would never break the “no contact” rule over anything and still sticking to it. How long do I have to stay without contacting her cos she seems pretty convinced that I cheated and she won’t contact me either. What do I do? Its been 7 days and am losing it…help please

    • Hey man,

      First of all, she sounds like she has trust issues. And if her suspicion of you cheating caused this break, the relationship was doomed to fail anyway.

      Is there a mutual friend or one of her girlfriends you can give the clothes to? Or perhaps have a friend coordinate her picking up the clothes when you’re not home. Point being, there often still is a way to maintain no contact, and you’ll be thankful you did.

      Unless you have kids together, be creative in keeping no contact.

  17. Jesse, this is a wonderful site. Thank you for making it possible.

    This is about seeing your ex-girlfriend out with another man. How can I cope if I “accidentially” see them together. My girlfriend of two years broke up with me six weeks ago. It was my first serious relationship, with my first “true love.” We’re in our last semesters of college. We got together in October 2011, broke up in December 2013. At first, I did what I have been gathering is the usual routine – trying to get her back. I, of course, cried and begged during breakup. I texted and called her for the next three weeks just to maintain contact so I could feel she is still in my life. I’m new to breakups, and didn’t realize how pathetic I came off. Now I want to vomit over my disgraceful actions. I have not contacted her in any way, shape or form in two weeks.

    But right before I cut contact for good, through some light “digging” that I’m ashamed I did (and don’t do anymore), I found out that she’s been spending time with a man who always been hard up for a girlfriend. A picture of her and him together smiling, with captions about how wonderful the dinner was that she and a friend made for him. Before we broke up, she would receive “hilarious” texts from this guy (then she’d tell me how funny and cute and how much of a sweetheart this guy is). She couldn’t put up a post or picture on Facebook with him “liking” and commenting on it. He’s into her (or any pretty available female), and due to the positive comments she would say about him, she’s into him as well. Okay, I have to accept that. It’s no fun, and hurts badly, but I’ll get over it. But I’m just NOT READY, and may never be ready, to see these two together in public. My ex is a very PDA person, and I know if I’ll see them together, they’ll be holding hands and giving light smooches. I’m really scared of running into them while out and about. It’s a small college town, and there are “bar regulars” and “downtown regulars.” She and I are regulars. Going out with the very few friends I have left after this breakup is a great source of relief for me. But I’m scared to death of running into the both of them while out. I’m very introverted and need to get out. I really enjoy it, even if I don’t get drunk at bars. IF I do see them together while I’m out, how would you recommend me acting, and more importantly, how would you recommend me coping with the aftermath of this sighting that I desperately don’t want to see. I really hate having to have mutual friends text her to tell her that I’m at so-and-so place so “don’t go there right now.” Hell, I’m scared to run into them together as I’m making a walk downtown. I know that I’m just not strong enough right now to be able to handle such a sighting, and won’t be for a long time. Her alone, I can handle. Her with a man, NO WAY. But it’s not fair that I have to wander around my own city living in fear while she gets free reign. I really don’t want to set back my recovery that is slowly but surely coming over me. How can I cope with the aftermath of depression and despair I’ll be feeling if I accidentially run into them?

    • Hey Jack,

      In cases like this it helps to walk through the encounters in your imagination. What is the most likely scenario? How would they react to you, and how do you want to react?

      You’re afraid of seeing them together. Why? There’s an evolutionary reason for this fear, but there is no legitimate rational one. Your fear is based on your instincts that this new male might kill your offspring, or you might end unwittingly rearing his. Is that relevant to your life right now? I would guess not.

      Seeing them changes nothing about your current situation. Nothing at all. Your fear is fundamentally irrational. It’s like someone that’s afraid of snails. Objectify it in that way. Recognize the fear, and tell yourself, “Ah, here is that fear again, it’s like the fear for snails, it’s there, but it is relevant to me.”

      Just imagining the encounter can give you a significant amount of anxiety. One of the reasons for this is that the brain doesn’t make a clear distinction between real events and imagined ones. We can use that to our advantage.

      By imagining the encounter, the different scenarios, and imagining yourself responding in the way you would want to respond, you are progressively desensitizing yourself to the encounter. I would walk yourself through the different scenarios, and come up with your ideal responses to them.

      Also, I would come up with a go-to exit response. Something you can say when you get caught off-guard by her, both of them, or any other situation. Something like “Hey, glad to see you’re doing alright. I really have to get going though, I’m meeting X at Y in 5 minutes.”

      Hang in there :)

  18. Hello Jesse and thanks for this page.
    Well here is my situation and I thought you might offer your take on it. I was married years ago and have two kids plus two grandkids. I have had a few long term relationships since then. Most recently I was engaged to a widow and the wedding date was coming up soon. The closer it got the more nervous I became. She wouldn’t consider moving in with me, and I was feeling worried about giving up my home. Anyway, about two weeks ago I asked if we could postpone the wedding a few months. At first she seemed ok with it, but after talking to a counselor, she declared I had too many “red flags” and that the relationship was over and she’s moving on. I asked for the engagement ring back and she gave it to me. So far I am not contacting her, but am having a very hard time dealing with this, mainly because I know that if I hadn’t told her about my cold feet we would still be on track. I really did (and still do) want us to be together. So, now I suppose I have to start over. Or is it possible she might change her mind? She has done that before. Thanks for your response.

    • Hey Gary,

      You need to figure out what was making you nervous about the approaching wedding.

      I think your postponing the wedding might have been your way of dealing with the nervousness, which in turn, is caused by some underlying reason. Perhaps her not wanting to move in with you made you insecure? It sounds like it would make me insecure. The key here, I believe, is coming to understand yourself better. You need to figure out what was making you so nervous.

      At the same time it sounds like after postponing the wedding, she bailed on you. I understand you feel like you want her back. But on a rational level, is that the description of someone you want to be with? Someone that bails on the relationship when you’re feeling insecure? To me it sounds like she wasn’t committed to begin with. What’s more, she’s blaming you for having too many ‘red flags’.

      Don’t accept that bullshit.

      The responsibility for a failed relationship is always carried by both parties. Her blaming you, and you accepting the blame is more of an indication of an imbalance that probably existed in the relationship as well. Am I right?

      I think if she changes her mind or not is irrelevant at this point. You need to grow as a person so you can attract someone with whom you can form a harmonious bond without feeling insecure about committing.


      • Yes it is true, she did ultimately bail on me. I opened the door a crack and she bolted. But she was prepared to go through with the ceremony and we had made many of the plans. True, there was an imbalance in the relationship, mostly money, but also other things. Well, we will see what happens, but thank you for your input.

  19. HI Jesse, ive been reading your website and the advice you give about this process about loosing someone. A dated a girl a few months ago, i couldnt believe how beautifull she was, caring and she said she was in love with me, wanted to have kids with me, etc. She said that no guy has ever treated her with such love as i did. I felt i was in heaven. We met because some common friends we have. She had an ex that what she told me about him and my friends told me about him he is controlling and psychologically abusive. He began texting her when we were together and i always said to her that she was a free soul, that i trusted her and i my love for her was unconditional. After a while she stopped mentioning him but began to be really hurtfull towards me, always putting me down, hurting my feelings, telling me i wasnt good in bed, giving me silent treatment, and i stood there taking it all, hoping it was just a phase. Its not hard to figure out what happened next, we broke up and a few weeks later i found out she was back with his old boyfriend. Most probably she began seeing him when she was still with me and didnt have the gusts to tell me and began treating me badly to have an excuse to break up, thats my theory. A few months passed and i thought i was doing ok but now i realize that i was still hoping that she would enmends her mistake and come back to me, i still had her on facebook even though i only contacted her a few times. Then I knew she was going to go to a party of one of our mutual friends. and i was hoping she wouldnt take that guy with her but of course she did. I was mentally prepared and mentalized myself to have a great time even under this circumstances. I did had a great time and me tinteresting people, etc but deep down i was and still am really hurting. That night i decided to accept we are no longer getting back together and i am not hanging in there waiting for her to realiza her mistake. But the pain is so strong, and i realiza its a pain ive experimented before, a pain i felt various time in life and the women that clicks it is circumstancial. I know deleted her from facebook and took some of the things i still had from her and took them and left them at the subway, but even though i want to move on, i want to heal this old pain and begin a new relationship with myself but i cant stop crying. Its been 4 days that its difficult too get out of bed, and i cry and cry like never before in my life. I guess this pain had to be aknowledged and cried, and feels good to cry after so many years but i also feel very tired. Am I in the right track? Sorry for the long post and thank you just for hearing.

    • Jose,

      You ARE on the right track my friend. You go through the pain, as you are doing, and you don’t run from it. Your recovery only truly starts when you fully accept that the relationship is over. I also bet that writing your experience out like this helped in and of itself, am I right?

      • It really did, it was therapeutic even though i wasnt aware about i was writing. The key things i can get about this experience is that life is a gamble, you have to give yourself to it and getting hurt is inevitable. But with each experience you gain knowledge about yourself and about women and life and the next love love you find in your life will be beautifull because you have something more to give, you have been hurt and still you let yourself believe and reach out again. This days that ive accepted that its over has giving me a new perspective even though the pain its still their lurking. You go to the subway, or the park or wherever and you see beautifull women all around, all shapes, sizes, personalities and colors, with their hopes fears, pain that they also have. And as i read in one of your posts about love and addiction, it is very true. When you are in pain about someone you have that junkie mentality that you will never meet again someone like that, or that a women as beautifull will never look at you again, and its time to pierce throuugh the illusions of the mind and see the abundance of beautifull women around you. But i think the biggest lessons of this whole process is that to really heal you have to put yourself first, really make sense of your own life, your own dreams, and when you take care of yourself you will love because you have abundance and not because you need someone to fill the void. Anyway im hanging in there, and the last thing i want to say is to all people, men or women who are suffering is feel your pain and seek to heal it by anymeans necesarry, hang in there, it gets better even though it seems impossible. And to you Jesse, thank you for your articles, for your words and this virtual space where we can be human.

  20. Hi Jesse

    I met a girl sometime back in September,2013. We started talking on Facebook first and then we excahnegd numbers and it all started up with a great pace. We both are in the same office. The girl is 9 months elder to me. The girl had a relationship for 3 years, she talked for that guy at home but they refused for 2 reasons –
    1) The guy was not good looking
    2) The guy had responsibilities of his family (like brother and sisters)
    3) The guy had told lie that he had a house and had 2 siblings (later they found he had 4)

    The girl liked him mainly because he was mature (as he was 30yrs old) and was understanding and gave girl full space. The girl was ready to compromise on all, but her parents refused, somewhere in March,2013. Post that they were in contact but the intimacy was gone (as she tells). Then I approached her on FB, without knowing her and her PAST, She accepted my friend request. We guys started dating. In October the guy got engaged and November he got married. The Girl was in contact with me and had contact with that guy too till ovember,2013 (the day of his marriage). Post that she was fully with me. In October,2013, the girl approached me for marriage (I am only 25, as of now, was dating her from past 2 months only , was unsure and I always thought that maybe because that guys has left her she is coming to me for marriage). I asked her for more time. She told her parents that there is a guy but we need time. The girl would be 27 this year, her parents have staretd pressing her very much now. In November she asked me what should I do, when my parents aske me to meet guys for marriage – “I was Blank, restless and DID NOT answer her”. I wanted her to stay back, but I was not very sure. Mainly because –
    1) She had gone thru a breakup, so I thought she was looking for a shoulder but in practicality she does not love me.
    2) She always said I am IMMATURE, and she has always been with Mature and older guys.
    3) I tried to change my way of thinking and acting so as to make her feel I am mature but I was not getting there fully.
    4) She said I am too emotional (which I am actually). I use my Heart more than my brain.
    5) She feels her future is not totally secure with me as we earn more or less the same (infact she earns more than me, as she has more work ex). But I said if we both continue to work this amount should be sufficient. But she wants guy to earn that much that she has no requirement to work. Altough I have aksed her many time that can you adjust in a normal family and the package that I have, she said YES she can- earlier in December,2013. But When I say her the same, she says SHE DOES NOT FEEL FOR ANYONE NOW, She is going with the flow, and she does not want to be with me.

    Had she treated me properly in past 5 months maybe I could have taken a stand but I am too skeptical seeing her behavior and still sometimes she talk to her ex (which I am not able to take maturely)

    Now on 26th Jan, 2014, she stopped talking to me at all. Althought things had got rough between us from December,2013, as she wanted a stand from my side. She used to say when I go to see other guys I have them on one side and you on the other side. I was very helpless and unsure – I used to think that am I making a decision in haste If I plan to stay with her. She belongs to a very rich family, her parentls are looking for guys who have v v strong background. I belong to a average class family and have a normal average package.

    Now post 26th January,2014, she has stopped talking to me at all. Always its me who go to her to talk. I am not sure about her totally because-
    1) I am very young rt now, and I don’t feel that I am mature enough to handle marriage.
    2) Financially not very stable
    3) Since the time her parents started pressurizing her for marriage, and she did not see me taking a firm stand, she started treating me REAL BAD. She always used to say –“U don’t know anything”, “U act IMMATURE”.

    Now when I don’t talk to her she does not initiate. When I go to meet her she seems to be v v pissed off .
    When I talk to her she does not reply properly, she syas yo talk too much and that too immature and I ALWAYS LLIKED GUYS WHO ARE MATURE, TALK LESS AND LISTEN More.
    Now she has started seeing guys, who her parents find for her. Those guys are elder to her and most of them are very rich . When I say I will try to take a switch and then will u be with me, she REFUSES FLAT. She says we are two different people (poles apart) and U should also move on.

    She is still n the same campus and I see her go out have fun with her friends, and I am all RESTLESS, DESPARAT, FRUSTRATD. When I go to tell her what I fell she says “I m not at all interested in listening what you feel”. Now she humiliates me too by saying – u don’t have self respect – I tell you not to talk to me and you come again.

    I am seriously very frustrated, don’t know in how much time she will get married. I am all restless all day long , thinking about our past (time spent together). All day I fell restless to see her and talk to her, but seems like she HAS MOVED ON TOTALLY, I AM not at all in the PICTURE and she is IRRITATED when I talk to her.

    BUT as mentioned above I am toooo emotional , I don’t see my self respect/ ego being hurt , I still feel like having the same time with her as we used to spend earlier. I don’t have the strength to see her getting married and see her roam here in the same campus (or far location). I cuts me down.

    Please guide me . This pains takes me over every day and seeing her I feel restless to meet her an talk to her (as if I am a stalker). It does not look nice to me either, but I am trying to make things normal and she is trying to part ways.

    I have given my 100% to this relationship, stayed loyal always never looked at any other girl. Took extremely good care fo her. But today I am standing with nothing in hand, waiting for her , but looks she too has gone and with no regret at all on her face.

    From the past two weeks I see her in office and I ignore her, I have been practicing no contact. But I feel very uncomfortable to see her, very restless when she talks to her ex (whose now married), very diassappointed as she seems to have moved on (as she told me 2 weeks back that she has started seeing a guy who is elder to her, rich and she is looking to get married to him). It feels like she used me like a REBOUND guy, a person she used to have fun,overcome her ex, become emotionally stable. She seems fine now, but I have gone emotionally unstable.
    Please help me- guide me.

    • Hey buddy,

      Thanks for sharing your story.

      I think you were right in not being very sure, especially point 1 sounds accurate: “in practicality she does not love me”. Asking for some more time on important decisions like marriage sounds to me like mature behavior, not immature. If she breaks up with you after that, things weren’t meant to last, and it’s better sooner than later.

      Something else that strikes me in your story is that it sounds like you have this image of a “better you”, defined by her, which you need to live up to. The problem is, just by accepting that premise, and her model, you’re shooting yourself in the foot. You’re telling her and yourself that who you are right now is not good enough. In addition to that, a relationship where there is constant resentment or criticism like “you are not mature”, is not a healthy nor a stable basis for a long term relationship.

      Having said that, I think I agree with you that you might still be and feel a bit young for marriage, which makes this whole situation good for you, not bad. Rationally it’s pretty clear. It’s only emotionally that you’re still so attached to this person that you can’t see the facts.

      By expressing what you feel for her, despite you also knowing that it’s probably better leaving this whole thing buried, you’re communicating that you’re insecure about the future with her, but you’re willing to ignore you’re beliefs because you love her so much. I know it’s coming from a place of sincerity within you, but you’re basically just telling her you have no spine. You’re telling her: I have all these beliefs that tell me this is probably not a smart thing to do, but even though you talk down to me, I am willing to ignore all that because I feel so strongly for you. There is no stronger turn off than a guy that gives up on his beliefs.

      It does seem like she has moved on totally. So do you really want to be with someone that isn’t interested in you? What’s more, in someone that is capable of moving on like that on a whim?

      You’re too fixated on this one person my friend. You’re elevating her to semi-goddess while at the same time there are a bunch of reasons that pursuing her doesn’t make any sense at all, number one being that she isn’t interested in you.

      You’ve used this girl to define yourself, rather than stick to your beliefs. You need to stick to no contact, engage your family and friends for support and start on a path of discovering what it is exactly that you stand for and how you can make decisions on a day to day basis that align you with those beliefs. Start journaling about your emotions every day and postpone any feelings you may have until your journaling moments.

      Keep strong,


  21. Hi Jesse

    Please revert, I am still waiting for your response/ guidance.


  22. Hi Jesse

    Thanks for your response. I am sticking to the no contact rule and now it will be a month almost. When we last talked she was in contact of another guy who is elder to her and is rich too. She told that the guy is striking her and because of pressure from her family to get married, maybe she is seeing her future with him. The problem is that we are in same office, we see each other every day. I ignore her, but thats not something from within. I am still curious to see her – basically get a glimpse of her. I think she has moved on, as she did not try to contact even once.
    Besides this she has left me with the below feelings:
    1) I am not finacially sound.
    2) I am immature.
    3) I am not practical.

    I used to take very good care of her. But when she was with me, her ex used to talk to her, and she also used to reply, post that this reduced (because I guess he was engaged to another girl). My girl always used to say that its fine if I talk to him for official purpose or seek help from him, but I always insisited on taking help from anyone else but why only that guy. We always fought on this issue. I dont know but I used to feel that for enjoyment she is with me, but when there is some work(like she had to buy a car) she never even asked me to accompany her and she used to go with her ex. Belive me this pissed me off. She told me in november to break up, as she saw no future, but I always asked her for time, as
    I was unsure as I think she was still not over fully, or maybe she had no option left.
    Now after breakup she talks to her ex, commutes with him. I feel like a timepass object (rebound guy), which she used to overcome her ex and now she will get married to someone else. I remember this very clearly , she said – “When I can move on with my past relation ship which lasted for 3 yrs and I was thinking of getting married to him, ours was just for 5 months and we were not so much into each other”. But as she stared to draw out of r’ship, I started to feel more and ore for her. I am very sad, feel like I am not financially sound, I am kiddidsh. She is emotionally stable I guess, but helping her get stable I have lost my emotional stability :(
    I share my feelings with my friends, but I am sad and dis-heartened, as this is my 2nd breakup and 2nd time when I have been dumped for some other guy.
    And yes in this realtion towards the end “I WAS THE GUY WITH NO SPINE”, could not take a stand initially (when I knew she was not still over her ex, I could have taken a stand and asked her to take take and get over her ex and then when she is ready we might start dating) thinking that if I say her no, I will have to single again and will not have anyone special in my life. This lure instigated me to get into a relation and now I am trapped.

    What I feel – is this correct?

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