He’s Moved On, So Why Are You Still Holding Onto Him?

You had a good run but now it’s over. It was great while it lasted but it ran its course and you broke up. Yet, for some reason, you’re still staring at his Facebook, texting him every time you have more than one glass of wine in your system and basically holding onto him for dear life. Why? He’s moved on—shouldn’t you?

  1. You’re making yourself look foolish. It doesn’t matter how much you loved him or he loved you, it’s over. O-V-E-R. In still holding onto him, you’re just making yourself look foolish with, honestly, a dose of pathetic too. When things are over, as much as they might suck, you accept it, hold your head high, and walk in the other direction. Even if you don’t want to do this, you do it because no one wants to look like a dumbass.
  2. You’re giving him the power. All this holding onto him is giving him power over you in ways you may not even realize yet—you’re literally putty in his hand if he wants you, and that’s no way to live. You should never give anyone power over you and when you hold onto to someone longer than you should, that’s exactly what you’re doing.
  3. You’re putting yourself in the “crazy” category. As much as I loathe to call any woman crazy, having acted crazy on several occasions in my life because of a guy, I know what it looks like: a woman holding onto her past as if her life depended on it. But your life doesn’t depend on your past, your ex, or that relationship that’s now over. What your life depends on is you wiping your hands of that past, forgetting any obsessive, crazy behavior that may have followed, and letting go of him. Let him live his life while you live yours.
  4. You’re wasting your time. Not only is life so insanely, scarily short but we only get one shot at it. Do you really want to waste your time? Even a few minutes of it? No, you don’t. Even if you don’t realize it now that you don’t want to waste it, someday you will. So before that someday comes, and I guarantee it will, stop wasting your time immediately. You’d be better off wasting your time on extra naps than some guy who so clearly was able to move on without you. I mean, that says something about him and points to the fact that you deserve more.
  5. You’re hindering your healing process. When we hold on and on and on, we don’t allow ourselves to heal. Since every relationship is a loss of some kind, it involves grieving and healing. You can’t recover from something if you still have your fingers dug into it. So untangle your fingers from what was and take the first step toward healing so you don’t have to feel this way much longer.
  6. You’re driving everyone around you mad. When we hang onto something we shouldn’t, this usually means we obsess about it. And more often than not, when we obsess, we suck everyone in our life into the obsession. In other words, what I’m trying to say is that your friends and family are sick of hearing about him, talking about him, and looking at his Instagram and Facebook playing detective with you. Even if they don’t say it, they’re effing over it. Your behavior isn’t just driving them mad but also driving them away.
  7. You’re making yourself sick. Between obsessing, driving everyone crazy and not letting yourself heal, there’s a very good chance that you’re making yourself sick too. No good. The human body can only stand just so much emotional and mental turmoil before it decides it needs a vacation so it quits working properly to tell you it’s out of commission for a bit. Even if you’re not sick yet, as long as you continue to hold onto him, the sickness will be on its way.
  8. You’re playing into a stereotype. One of the worst things about holding on to him when he’s already moved on to someone else? You immediately become a stereotype: “Scorned woman hangs onto ex for years longer than she should.” This is not the person you want to be. This is not the person any woman wants any other woman to be. I’m pretty sure if any of your friends were doing the same, you’d tell them to snap out of it.
  9. You’re not being productive. Look at you! You’re behind in deadlines, your apartment has a weird smell because you haven’t taken out the trash in weeks, and only Kim Deal from the Breeders circa 1993 can successfully pull off that level of greasy hair. Come on—it’s time to get your act together and join the world of the living.
  10. You deserve to move on, too. I have made the mistake of holding on too long to a guy who moved on from me in a matter of seconds. It was a devastating blow to my heart, my ego, and to my entire sense of self. But what I learned, after I finally pulled myself off the floor, was that it was completely unfair to me to allow myself to suffer and hang onto him, knowing full well he had no fucks to give about me or what was to become of me. No fucks at all. I deserved to move on—and so do you.
Amanda Chatel is a sexual health, mental health, and wellness journalist with more than a decade of experience. Her work has been featured in Shape, Glamour, SELF, Harper's Bazaar, The Atlantic, Forbes, Elle, Mic, Men's Health and Bustle, where she was a lifestyle writer for seven years. In 2019, The League included Amanda in their "15 Inspirational Feminists Every Single Person Should Follow on Twitter" list.

Amanda has a bachelor's degree in English and master's degree in Creative Writing from the University of New Hampshire. She divides her time between NYC, Paris, and Barcelona.

You can follow her on Instagram @la_chatel or on Twitter @angrychatel.