There are a few different camps of people when it comes to exes. And you definitely have some options:
1. Run away screaming and cursing the day he was born.
2. Ignore it.
3. Hash it all out and give him a piece of your mind, finally saying all those things you always wanted to say.
4. Grin and bear it, until you can get away and gossip about how awful he looks with your girl friends.
5. Jump into bed for ex sex.
6. Have a genuine friendly conversation and walk away with your head high.
There are probably some grey areas in there that I didn’t mention, but you get the idea. The men that meant a lot to me in my life, as well as the ones that treated me with respect (they were usually the same few guys- the ones that meant a lot treated me with respect) are the ones that fall into category number 6. But they are few.
I think no matter who the ex is, no matter what circumstances surrounded the breakup and the getting back in contact, there is a moment of panic. An “Oh shit, what so I do?! How do I look? What should I say?” kind of moment.
Of course that’s normal. It’s also normal to engineer the situation so that you see him looking smoking hot and making sure you have control of the situation.
Every once in a while I lose my cool and let the guy have it. But only when necessary. Only when I feel like not standing up for myself would do myself a disservice.
It’s ok to lose your cool when you walk away with your head high, not regretting or worrying about what you said. When the bridge was already burned long ago because he did something that totally disrespected you.
Usually these days I tend to ignore my exes if they contact me. And I use the term “ex” loosely, including men then I went on a few dates with maybe we hooked up and maybe we didn’t.
I used to reply to these guys. And I usually fell into bed with them pretty quickly. I figured what was the harm!? I’m not adding to my number, it’s fun, it makes me feel sexy. Until it all falls into the same pattern and I remember why we aren’t hanging out anymore. Things normally don’t change.
I think I mentioned I dated a train driver. It ended because he worked literally all the time, so I never saw him. Our whole relationship was by text because he could do that on the train but it was too loud to talk. I saw him every once in a while, and I even made a trip to Philly to see him in his hotel room. There was plenty of sexting. And usually when he would pop up out of the blue, we would catch up. And fall into old patterns. And then I would realize it’s not going anywhere and I would forget to reply to a message and let it go.
He tried to involve me in making his girlfriend jealous one say, and I would have none of that and I cut ties. He texted me out of the blue the other day with “hey stranger! How ya been? I had a dream about you last night, it was the strangest thing.”
You had a dream about me? My ass. There is no reason for me to pop into your head after two years of not talking and not being friends on Facebook, not to mention barely having a relationship two years before that.
What a lame excuse, and I know it’s an excuse because I’ve used it! I’ve used it for guys that I haven’t talked to in a while and I would like to take a shot at talking again and getting back together for at least some making out. With someone that doesn’t know it’s an excuse!
And then there are the few exes that things could rekindle.
I saw The One That Got Away last night.
And I will admit that I engineered it. I knew what I was walking into when I went to an event that I knew he was working. I knew that if I told someone on headset to tell him I said hello that I could very likely be opening the door to reconnecting.
I actually laughed when the guy asked me if he would know who I was by just my first name.
I just said, “Yes, we go way back.”
So my heart started pounding when I went back to my seat and I saw this security guard look at me, talk into his walkie and then look way off to the right. And I went into tunnel vision when I saw a tall, blonde, thin guy walking from across the field. And then he disappeared and, nothing.
I figured, well I guess that was it. He knows I am here, and he doesn’t want to see me. I was disappointed but I let it go and focused on the game I was there to watch.
Fifteen minutes later he plops down in front of me with an excited “Hiya!” God I wish my face had been caught on camera. A mix of total shock and excitement.
And so we chatted for about fifteen minutes. We hugged several times and neither of us could stop beaming. When we sat down because I commented on how short I felt (he is a foot and two inches taller than I am), he scooted right next to me so our arms and legs were in contact.
I lost count of how many times he said it was good to see me, or he wanted us to get together for a drink, or he apologized for how he handled things before.
So what now? I don’t know, to be honest. The ball is in his court, so there is a good chance nothing may come of this.
But what I am more interested in right now is what makes this ex different from the others? Why does this one get different treatment? Why am I willing to keep the conversation going?
I’m going to explore that more in depth tomorrow, so stay tuned.