After ending my most recent relationship, I wanted things to remain amicable between myself and my ex. Unfortunately, it seemed he didn’t want the same. After we broke up, he started acting cold, dismissive, and downright mean to me. What gives? He was the one who messed up in the relationship, so why was I being treated so poorly? I was left confused and completely hurt. As it turns out, this is an all-too-common trend that happens after a breakup. You might feel like you did something wrong, but the reality is that there is some reason behind this – and it isn’t your fault.
Shame and guilt are two feelings that can significantly alter our behavior. Your ex likely feels bad for whatever it was that ruined your relationship and they don’t like facing that shame. People experiencing shame are unable to feel sufficient as they are. When this is the case, maintaining lasting relationships becomes difficult if not impossible. Shame manifests physically and emotionally in a variety of forms. Because the effect of shame often interferes with our ability to think clearly, we may experience confusion, being at a loss for words, or a blank mind. Your ex probably feels pretty lousy because of this.
They think it’ll be easier to move on if you hate each other.
It’s hard to remain amicable with an ex if there are lingering feelings still present. Your ex may feel that it’ll be easier for them to move on from the breakup if they have some disdain for you. They’re trying to create bad thoughts and memories about you so that their feelings will fade. It seems simpler to say ‘sayonara’ to a relationship if you feel like you don’t like the person you were in it with.
They don’t want to hurt you anymore.
I know this sounds completely ass-backward, but your ex could be trying to push you away in order to spare your feelings in the long run. My ex hurt me badly, resulting in our breakup). It seemed that whenever I tried to express this hurt, he pushed me away more and more. He became dismissive of my feelings and would often distance himself if they were brought up. Although this continued to hurt me more, he made it clear that he didn’t want to continue being reminded of the pain he had caused me and was afraid of hurting me any further. More often than not, you need to listen to this message. Don’t put yourself through this upsetting cycle.
Talking to you when you’re not together anymore makes them upset.
Like the saying goes, out of sight, out of mind. It’s easier for your ex to forget their residual feelings for you if you’re not present in their life anymore. If they’re seeing you or talking to you, it reminds them of what they lost.
Believe it or not, men’s emotions get equally as intense and confusing as women’s do. Yet, men are usually not as emotionally equipped to handle these emotions as women are. They get easily overwhelmed by their feelings and will often react aggressively when they’re brought up. What’s more, is that they may have had poor examples set for them in the past of emotionally mature breakups. Men are typically more avoidant than women when it comes to emotions and will do anything they can to keep those feelings on the back burner so as not to overwhelm themselves. Because of this, they can come off as dismissive or mean when they start to feel overwhelmed.
They’re now forced to deal with their problems on their own.
Outside issues can play a huge factor in how your ex is treating you after your breakup. Without your support, they could be dealing with a whole slew of problems that they’re not used to facing on their own. These outside problems can build up stress in your ex – and they may be taking out that stress on you. Know that this is their problem now, not yours. Don’t tolerate being treated that way, but remember not to take it personally.
They’re no longer trying to win you over.
When someone is no longer trying to “woo” you, their true colors will show. And, to put it bluntly, they’re just a jerk. They may take on this sort of “f**k it” mentality because they know that they no longer have to prove anything to you or live up to a certain standard in your eyes. Since they’re no longer in a relationship with you, there’s no need to act so nice anymore. It’s a nasty, bitter way to cope with a breakup, but a common one, nonetheless.
You remind them of their shortcomings.
After a breakup, people are forced to look at their own faults as well as acknowledge the things that caused them. Especially if they’re the ones that caused the breakup, you now serve as a constant reminder of what is wrong with them that caused you to leave. On your end, as someone also going through the breakup, you may even be bringing up these shortcomings outright, which is upsetting to them. You could be nagging them about things that happened in the past. It takes a toll on their self-esteem. And there is no angrier a man than one with insecurity issues.
They need space to heal (and you do too).
I’m all for being able to speak cordially with an ex, but often these things take time. Coping with and healing from a breakup is difficult. It’s something that each of you needs to navigate through individually if you ever hope to reach amends. Make sure you give them that space to do so and take that time to heal yourself too.
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