Other Questions about Breaking Up/Dealing with ex boyfriends and girlfriends:
You’re awesome:) I’ve been reading your website for some time now, looking for answers. But I think I must write to you now and get your perspective on my situation. I hope you write back!
So here goes:
I’m from Bombay, India. In 2009, my company sent me on a short stint to the Delhi office. At the time, I was in an on-again, off-again relationship with a guy back in Bombay and really not looking for anyone else in my life. So, I was generally having a good time making some new friends at the Delhi office—including this guy Ro. Let’s call him that.
Ro was funny and helpful and in an on-again, off-again thing as well. So he was just a fun friend to grab a drink with and discover a little bit of Delhi bit. I came to Bombay and didn’t think much of him. Neither did he, and it didn’t matter.
A few months later it turns out we were both offered a job with the same company in Delhi. We were both out of our on-again-off again thing as well. I couldn’t wait to be in a new city, be single, and live without my folks for a change!
He was helpful when I moved—in a good guy friend kind of way. I helped him about to — go to the dentist, chase some girls. He dropped me home, and invited me to dinner because I was lost in a new city. We were good friends to each other.
Suddenly, even though we had other friends we were spending all of our time together. Nothing physical mind you, just talking late into the night, drinking, enjoying the same kind of music, watching the movies we love. What happened next was inevitable: we kissed. But a whole two months into getting to know each other. It felt right, and it felt special.
Three weeks into a really nice relationship we had a fight—he wanted to break up. He said he was getting really insecure about me looking at other guys and couldn’t handle it. I told him to hang in there and that we’d be okay. By then, this harmless crush had grown into a lot more than just a crush given how much of ourselves we had bared.
We were back together again. Over time I moved into his house. We were living together. We had the usual ups and downs of a relationship—the squabbles about who’s running late, him doing hardly any house, me being snappy in the morning—but largely we had a great time. We traveled, had friends over, read together, worked hard, advised each other on work, and spent a lot of time together and alone. This went on rather nicely for a year.
Then I wanted to know where this was going. I didn’t want to be in a live in relationship with a guy if we weren’t eventually going to get married. He said he needed time to think. I gave him the time. He said he wanted a few more months. We had a bit of spat over that, and some other stuff but we sorted it out. I moved out, then moved back in. For awhile his mum didn’t know I’d moved back in (she lives in other city) she told him he shouldn’t meet me, and that he should get over this. But we fell back into a happy relationship again, although this time there were more downs, until three months down the road when things started to get nice again. I kept asking him if he wanted this to go further and if not we should end this. He kept saying he needed time to think.
We began 2012 on a great note. he would call and tell me- he told his aunts he was getting married, when I was out of town, we went to a few good trips around Delhi and Dubai with our sisters and even found a new house we’d want to move into. My only condition: I wasn’t moving in until we were sure we were headed.
He finally popped the question and rather romantically at that. He took me to our favourite tea place, and placed a little note in a cup. The month after that was lovely with congratulations pouring in, a 3oth birthday celebration, and furniture shopping which we both enjoyed!
Two days into his birthday celebration we had a fight. His sister had moved in a week ago and I brought up the question: who pays for her every time we go out? For some reason he wanted to pay for her and not me although we’re all working. Things got rather ugly there with him telling me he was never okay to support me, even if i couldn’t work for a small time in my life thanks to kids etc but would continue to spend on his folks and sister. His mum also accused me of controlling his money, and being out to get him. She got involved. I was on a business trip, she called him back to his hometown. He sent me an email and ended the engagement.
We never met, we weren’t given a chance to sort out our fight. In the email he agreed that I wasn’t ill -intentioned on the finances but he found me manipulative and controlling. That hurt.
He asked me to move out in 2 days. I said i needed 2 weeks. I moved back to Bombay. We met once so I could tell him he was doing the wrong thing. That issues crop up and we should deal with them rather than break away because of them.
He said: let’s agree to disagree but he didn’t look to good. He’s back in his hometown now with his mum. I’m in Bombay.
We haven’t spoken. I don’t know what to do. Will he come back? (My folks and our common friends are disgusted with his behavior!) What do I do to bring him back?
Couple of things:
It must be noted he’s on some pills mood enhancers that he started taking after I pushed him to visit the counselor. He kept saying he had low mood swings and felt down for no apparent reason. The counselor helped him tremendously!
His mum was never warm towards me, but was happy because I helped him a lot—cooking cleaning etc. so she was cordial. (Although she was excited when the wedding was announced.)
We’ve chipped in towards all expenses most of the time and I ‘ve always advised him on financial matters and he’s taken the help gladly because I’m better with numbers.
He’s always said he loved me, and I was the best thing that happened to him.
Some of his aunts thought I was pushing him to marriage but given his commitment phobia I told them i just want clarity.
I still love him! )
Thanks for your question.
We think his decision to break up with you is less a matter of his mood enhancers and more a matter of deference to his mother. Sure, we do believe a son or daughter should be respectful to his or her parents, but—and this is a big BUT— we also believe at some point a person needs to start making their own decisions, especially about something as important as who they’re going to marry.
Three things could be going on here.
1. He’s easily swayed by his family’s opinions—mostly the women in his family, his mother and aunts. Which means, he’s basically a mama’s boy. (Sorry, there’s no nice way of saying this.)
2. He’s using his family’s opinions, and the fact that you’re aware of how his mom feels about you, as an excuse to extract himself from a situation that would be difficult to extract himself from otherwise. (Meaning, he’s not sure about whether you’re the person he wants to marry after all.)
3. He’s uncertain, as many people are, about one of the biggest decisions of his life.
The first two choices aren’t particularly attractive, although if it’s the first choice—that he’s easily swayed by his family— at least he could realize his mistake, be a man, stand up to his family, ask for your forgiveness, and move forward with the wedding. We understand that in some cultures family has more influence over sons and daughters than in others. But ultimately people need to make their own decisions. If he’s not strong enough or mature enough to do that, he’s probably not the guy you want to marry. Because if he’s caving now, it’s likely you’ll have to deal with his mother’s influence for the rest of your married life. We doubt that’s something you’re going to be happy about.
If what’s going on is option 2—that he’s really not happy with you—then no, it’s unlikely he’ll be back. He may never say it, and will probably keep hiding behind his family, but his true feelings are there beneath the surface.
If it’s option 3, then yes, at some point he’ll realize he’s made a mistake and come back to you.
So what you need to do Sigh, is figure out which one it is.
If you do come to some sort of reconciliation you need to have an open and honest conversation with him. Find out from him what he needs from you. We’re not suggesting you change just to be with him, but relationships are about compromise, and they are also tools to help us all grow and evolve. None of us are perfect, and sometimes it takes tough love from a partner or spouse to help us see ourselves more clearly. Having said that, you can’t change the core of who you are and nor you shouldn’t, but you can change some of your behaviors and actions. It’s up to you to decide what you’re willing to compromise on and what you’re willing to do to make this relationship work. Of course, he should be willing to do the same. And if he’s not also working on his actions, then all you’ll feel is resentment and anger. A relationship is a two way street and both parties should be willing to do whatever it takes—within reason—to make it work.
Hope this helps a little. Please leave us a follow up comment in the comments section below. Or ask us a follow up question. And keep us posted as this progresses.
Good luck and hang in there,
ps. Please let your friends know about us. Thanks!
pss. Also, you might be interested in our “Relationship Memoirs” page. There are some interesting essays and stories there.