I could use some help. I just had a 2-year relationship end unexpectedly. I don’t really know why we broke up because she gave me a very vague, open-ended reason for calling it quits. Here’s the thing: I had just purchased the engagement ring and was planning a huge proposal. To give you an idea of how big this was for me, I even missed my best friend’s destination wedding, where I was supposed to be the best man, to spend that money on the engagement ring. I’m no longer seeking closure, but I am wanting to know what’s the best way for a guy to move on and open himself up again?
-Single and Maybe Ready to Mingle
Dear Single and Maybe Ready to Mingle,
First, let me offer my condolences to you. I always hate to hear about any relationship breaking up, especially if there was no cheating and fuckery going on. I’m assuming you were acting on the up and up and so was she — well, maybe.
Congrats on being the grown-up kind of man that wanted to marry your bae, because as you know there are those of us out here being ghosted and can’t even get a return text. Clearly, I still feel some kind of way about grown people that won’t use their words. But, I digress. My first question for you is this: Why? I know you already said that she didn’t tell you the details, but why not share with the class the vague reason she did give? You say you aren’t looking for closure, but are you sure?
Getting your heart broken out of the blue when you are preparing in your mind to spend the rest of your life with someone is a doozy! Especially after you chose your potential future wife over your best friend’s nuptials. Inquiring minds want to know. It can’t because y’all are still friends? No way.
I also understand you are looking for the best way to move on and open yourself up again. But again I ask: Are you really? You signed your letter (cough, email) “MAYBE,” so what is the truth here? Read the next words, and, repeat them aloud: heal first. Do not — I repeat, do not — get out here breaking folks’ hearts just because you had your feelings cracked. We know that hurt people hurt people, and that misery loves company, so the first step is to take your time and truly heal your heart. Get your feelings together. Find the things that you are grateful for in your life, regain love of yourself and what you love about you.
To forgive your ex, you have to find the gratitude in that relationship before you can totally put it behind you. Here’s a tip, make a list of the reasons you are grateful for your ex and the lessons you learned from the relationship, then forgive her and, more importantly, yourself. It will put things in perspective and help you move forward.
Once you have healed, then you can test the waters again. Go out to some of your favorite places and smile and make convo, swipe left (or is it right on these newfangled dating apps?). Try to make new friends without jumping straight into a relationship or even a situationship or even someone’s bed. What we don’t want is to read a tweet thread about you jumping into so-and-so’s bed, they get their feelings hurt, and air every bit of your biz and nekkid pics out on social media. Despite what your friends may tell you, the best way to get over one person is not getting under or on top of someone else.
It’s going to be hard to trust again, much less love, but you aren’t in a rush, are you? Here’s the thing, you have to trust yourself and your judgment before you can trust anyone else. Do you believe you are worthy of love and respect? Know the difference between a keeper and a trifling ass … well you get the point.
While you didn’t mention how long you have been single again, maybe you should just enjoy your singledom and catch up with friends. Discover new hobbies, join some meet-up groups and meet new people.
I assume you still have the ring, so return it, get yourself something nice, or make it up to your best friend and take him on a guy’s trip. Party it up in Vegas as for a retroactive bachelor party (Just make sure he upholds his vows). As for you: What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas. Good luck!
If you have a dilemma you need help solving, drop me a line: firstname.lastname@example.org.