It is healthy to revert to being strangers after a failed relationship? What's the best way to handle that?

After splitting from my boyfriend just over a month ago, I'm currently in the 'cold turkey' period of no longer speaking to him. The relationship could arguably have been termed 'Emotionally Abusive' (several of my friends actually cheered when I had my 'epiphany' and left the relationship). It ended very acrimoniously and after about a week I contacted him and tried to correct the previous arguments.

We discussed getting back together (and slept together, I'm afraid) but history repeated itself and we decided it wasn't a good idea to try again. I've had trouble moving on and it was his suggestion that in order for both of us to completely 'heal' we should sever all contact with one another for the forseeable future. It's only been just over a week since we last spoke and I'm summoning every bit of willpower I have not to phone him. He said that I shouldn't be too upset as he doubts this will last forever and he hopes a time will come where we might exchange the odd text or email, or even meet up as friends in a group with others - I clung to this hope at the time but do actually find his words a bit patronising.

I was wondering if it's really healthy to ignore someone and revert to being strangers after a bad break-up and failed relationship. I must admit, that however much I still think of him, and however hard it is - not contacting him probably IS for the best for the time being. I think it's sad when you're in a relatively long-term relationship with someone, loved them, and they were an extension of yourself and then you revert to being complete strangers. Is this really the best course of action? Is it only painful because its still so recent? Will he really ever contact me in the future? Eventually will I just not care either way?

Thanks in advance.


I don't actually have loads of friends - I have 2 best friends but one of them is married with young children (and lives a fair distance away) so I don't get to see her too often. I suppose this might be part of the problem - I don't have enough to occupy myself with at the moment so my thoughts keep returning to him...

I accept that it's really early days (since the relationship ended and we last spoke) - I get obsessed with checking his myspace to see who has left comments (he used to constantly laud his exes over me and make out that they all still had feelings for him)... I just look forward to a time when I no longer care. At the moment it hurts to think that we may never speak again - though my friends and family have all said that they hope this WILL BE the case.

Update 2:

Thanks for all the positive and reassuring answers so far :)

I know that when I think about things rationally it wasn't my fault how things turned out. He destroyed all my confidence and was somehow able to make out that everything was my fault (Hey! It was acceptable for him to 'check out other women' and point out 'hot women' when I was there, because apparently this only bothered me because of my 'low self esteem' - yes, his words)... But, at my lowest moments I do miss him and wonder how he's coping with the end of the relationship too.

12 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Best answer

    I'm in the same position and I think you're doing great! You've been strong all week (that's a looong time right after a breakup) so don't cave into your temptation and call him now. Try to find a hobby, activity, housework, project or something to keep you busy and not thinking about him. Whatever you do, don't try to date someone else yet. That will only make you want to run back to your ex. Have you ever wanted to make a quilt, paint your house, go back to school, skydive??? Anything to keep you busy! Time is the only thing that will really help you get over him so find some sort of way to try to pass it until you're feeling stronger. It may not be ideal to have to be strangers, but it is sooo hard to be around him when you know you can't be together, but you're still so far from over him. I'm sure he will contact you in the future and you will probably still care about how he's doing, but hopefully by that time you'll know how much better off you are without him!

  • 4 years ago


    Source(s): #1 Ex Back Secrets -
  • 1 decade ago

    Since he was emotionally abusive then you need to end all contact with him anyway. His "hope" that in the future you can be friends again makes me think he is trying to string you along in case he changes his mind down the road. Don't let him manipulate you like this!

    You are better off without him in your life, now or ever again. You may have loved him, but the relationship wasn't a good one. You said your friends cheered when they heard you left him. That's a MAJOR red flag! Your emotions blinded you to the truth for too long. Let go of your hopes for reconciliation. There are way too many guys out there to stress over one that honestly isn't worth your time or your affection.

    I was in a similar relationship in the past, and I completely understand the pain, doubt, and longing for contact again. But in time you really do heal, and you can look back and see you made the right choice by getting his poisonous character out of your life for good.

    Start hanging out with those friends that cheered when you made the right choice, and let them help you move on to the next brighter, happier chapter in your life. I wish you all the best.

    Source(s): Um... in my opinion I'd avoid anything so extreme as seeing someone as "dead in you eyes" for swearing at you. It's not healthy to deal with problems by pretending a close friend or family member died because of an argument, and then to skip their actual funeral by saying you didn't know them. If that's your mindset then you need to see a psychiatrist.
  • 1 decade ago

    Everyone is different in their reactions to the ending of a relationship. I always tend to 'forget' the bad times and reasons to spilt and look at things through rose-tinted glasses, simply recalling the good times. To have no contact IS hard, because that person is such a huge part of your life and you will automatically think of them upon waking in the morning etc. To cope with this you need to get out and meet new people, socialise and try and forget about him. Being friends and meeting up there will always be the temptation to sleep together again - but you could do this without it meaning anything significant?

    I would advise you to follow your heart. If you text him and he doesn't text back don't keep texting. If he contacts you and you want to reply then do it. Don't make yourself feel bad about the situation, take each day as it comes and try and be open minded without putting yourself in a bad relationship again.

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  • 1 decade ago

    The guy was emotionally abusive - YOU would be way healthier in the long run to treat him like a evil stranger and never talk to him again. It is painful because it is recent, you will get past this part. Move on and forget about this jerk. You will find someone better. Good luck.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    breakups are hard to deal with full stop.

    It is often easier not to talk to a person for the direct period after breaking up - out of sight out of mind kind of thing comes into play with this.

    I know its hard but you are better off just going cold turkey. The pain and need to speak to him will subside in time


  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Ho its good, its healthy and its advisable, especially when it had been an abusive relationship.

    I have a motto I have followed all the days of my life and it served me well in the end.

    Anyone who swears at me over the phone dies in my eyes from that moment. My brother tried it and sure as my motto holds, I regarded him as dead from hat moment on, and never spoke with him again.

    He was a stranger to me and even though he apologised and I accepted his apology, I never phoned him again, and he never phoned me either.

    Eventually he died and when I was asked if I would be attending the funeral, I could only answer that I only attend funerals of people whom I had known...

    I live by that rule and have never looked back.

    Let him die a total death as far as you are concerned, and that will take care of the "ho how I miss him" syndrome....

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    do not stay in touch - its the worst thing you can do. cruel to be kind unfortunatley!

    splitting up is like putting a gun to the persons head as you should and cannot keep in touch.

  • 1 decade ago

    i don't see any reason to keep in touch - if anything it could do you harm as you may be tempted to get back with him and that would not be good going by what you wrote.

  • 1 decade ago

    Why,the guy was no good.Just move foreward.

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