“He wasn’t always nice to me and I know I should forget him, but I can’t stop thinking about him. I miss him so much, what do I do?”
This is the gist of a lot of the private messages and posts that I receive and see in the private EBR Facebook support group. I hear this from women who have had their hearts broken into a million pieces. Women who have found Ex Boyfriend Recovery in a lonely and desperate state.
So what is one to do when you miss your ex so much, but you also fear he may not be the right guy for you? And worse, what if your ex boyfriend dragged you through a toxic relationship such as one of my clients, Kim, who was so confused that her first question to me was, “is my ex toxic”?
I told her if you have to ask such a question, he probably is and you should be doing everything you can to stay away from such a rotten boyfriend. Some guys you should just neatly pack away and forget them forever.
But how you go about forgetting your toxic ex boyfriend is not so easy as it turns out. You would think it would be easy to get over a toxic relationship with someone who has done way too much to make you suffer.
And it’s unfortunate there are guys out there like that. But some of these bad boyfriends know how to pull on your heart strings such that you think twice about leaving him.
Hi, I am Rachel and I want to talk to you about putting your ex behind you.
A Toxic Ex Can Screw With Your Mind Causing You To Miss Him
In the short term when your mind is playing tricks on you, it’s hard to see the big picture. It is easy to be manipulated and conned into thinking that this time he will be different. He may try to convince you that he has learned his lesson and will be good to you. He will exploit your weaknesses. This time the relationship will be better you might say to yourself.
But my experience is that when the relationship starts to go sideways for whatever reasons, far too many men do not rise to the occasion. Rather, they want you to forget all the bad stuff actually happened. How are you suppose to forget that an ex boyfriend cheated on you repeatedly? How are you suppose to forget an ex who dumped you for no good reason?
Well, you are suppose to, but it sure isn’t easy because the pull your ex may have on you is both emotional and it has a chemical origin as well. You actually go into a state of withdrawal when you come out a broken relationship.
And since not everything with him in the past was bad, you are particularly vulnerable. So those dopamine spikes you got when things were going well can turn on you when things with your ex starts breaking bad.
So here is my quick advice for women who tell me, “I am missing my emotionally abusive ex boyfriend, how do I stop feeling this way?”
If You Are Looking for Relationships Healing Solutions and To Stop Your Emotional Decline, Consider These Solutions:
- First accept that you are not fully yourself because of the vulnerable state you are in.
- Cut yourself off completely from this manipulative ex who has brought you so much pain
- Avoid spending time alone thinking about the good times. Second guessing yourself only leads to stagnation and self doubt
- Get up and walk or run or exercise and do so frequently to flush out the stress hormones
- Start a journal and express your feelings about why it is so right to have ended things
- Focus on improving your personal health, wealth, and expanding your relationships with new people
Why Can’t I Let Go of An Ex Who Is Harming Me?
Breakups suck, and missing someone who used to be in your life everyday might be the worst part of it.
I remember in the depths of the depression of my first heartbreak, how when I woke up in the morning, my body had to adjust. I woke up, and before I opened my eyes, I remembered that we were no longer together, that he was no longer mine. I thought all this, but I also new deep inside he was not right for me.
“Sometimes, when I wake up in the morning, I’m like, “Oh God, is this my life? Was that me?”
– Xander, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, “Entropy”
So you have to re calibrate. You must re-adjust to the new reality of your life. You are no longer together, and somehow, the world keeps on spinning, even though you feel like your life will never be the same. One part of you despise him for what he did to you. Another part is hungry for his company. I suspect if you are here, you have some sense of what I am talking about.
So Why Can’t I Let Go of a Guy Who Is No Good For Me?
- Getting over a toxic man is a battle against your memories of the good and bad times.
- Even despite his poor treatment of you, your brain chemistry will conspire against you shortly after break up.
- A bad boyfriend is one who beats you down emotionally, this takes a tool on your psyche.
- He made you feel inadequate and undeserving of anyone else, telling you no one will want you.
- Though your ex has mistreated you far too often, you are afraid to break the bond so as not to rock the boat or disappoint him more.
What Do I Do To Break The Hold My Ex Boyfriend Has On Me
I understand well that those first few days after a breakup are the worst – the days when you have to constantly remind yourself that things have changed.
This is the eye opening times, I like to call them, especially for those women stuck in abusive, toxic relationships with mean, vindictive, and narcissistic men.
But where do you go from here? You can’t stay in this broken hearted, confused daze forever.
What do you do to curb those feelings of missing him and escaping that invisible grip he has on your life?
There are numerous steps to this process. You have to first understand why you miss him so much, and you have to take steps to move forward with your life and create change.
To Get Over Him Remind Yourself Why He Made You Feel So Helpless, Worthless and Hopeless
This is what boyfriend con artists do. Some guys, are Prince Charming in the beginning, but as time goes by they reveal their true colors through scheming, manipulation and toxic behavior.
You name it, whether it is emotional abuse, physical abuse, rampant cheating, or brow beating, some guys are just not good relationship partners. If you find he is constantly taking verbal shots at you and saying demeaning things, draining you of your confidence, then yes, your are in an unhealthy relationship.
So why does he do this?
He would have you believe it’s your fault that things are wrong. He would have you believe that you are to blame for why he is upset or why things did not turn out well. A rotten boyfriend is one who is selfish and inconsiderate and is quick to criticize you and belittle you, zapping you of all your confidence and self esteem.
He does this because that is who he is.
That is all you need to know. It is not because of something inadequate in you. It’s him. It’s your ex’s ego centric view of himself and his place in the world.
So let this ex go bye bye.
You don’t need him. The reality is he needs you more. This kind of ex boyfriend is not worthy of any more of your time and emotional energy.
I Know This But How Do I Break Away From Him For Good
I know it can feel like your ex holds a spell over you. You try to end things, but somehow you are back together and the whole cycle of broken promises and emotional abuse begins again. So how do you stop this and move on?
- Don’t advertise to him or anyone that you miss him
- Institute a strict policy of No Contact
- Indulge in yourself. Put yourself first.
- Plan on a special outing with friends and leave to do something you have never done before.
- Write down all the things this bad boy did to you to make you feel small. Hang it somewhere for 1 week, then burn it.
- Finding peace within yourself through meditation, yoga, and participation in community activities.
- Keep a level head and your emotional cool and remind yourself that your ex is a figment of your past with each passing day.
Will I Ever Be The Same After What My Ex Did To Me?
Change is hard, and for some people, it’s harder when you our stepping out of a tough relationship.
For example, I got frustrated when the Starbucks that was on the walk to the train station moved a block away. This meant I had to travel an extra distance to get it each morning. It genuinely messed with the vibe of my commute for a full week before I got over it.
And that’s a little thing! Depending on the length and intensity of the relationship, breakups are always a big change to adjust to. And if you felt blindsided by the breakup or you were forced to give him up for your own survival, this can make it even more difficult.
When you have to quit something for your own good, like an ex boyfriend who is a bad egg, it takes a bigger toll on your psyche because irrespective of how he may have mistreated you, there were most likely good times and memories.
It is a huge change when a person who was a part of your daily life all the sudden disappears from it. There are actually studies that show your body goes into a withdrawal from not having that person in your life any longer. The brain of a cocaine addict is similar to that of someone going through a breakup.
So I have 5 things I want you to remember about breakup psychology because knowing these things will help you come out of the fog of depression.
- It is important to keep in mind that abuse stings, but by taking the steps to distance yourself from a toxic relationship will be a decision you will never regret.
- Being rejected is a blow to the ego and can make you cling to a guy who is no good for you. As soon as you let go you will start to see the bigger picture of how you had lost sight of your own worth
- Doing the things you are asked to do during the No Contact Period will lift your self esteem and confidence.
- After you get away from a serial cheater and manipulator, you will see your ex for what he really is. A weak, insecure loser.
- Once you have parted ways with an ex who is damaging everything that you are, you will learn to love yourself and even date yourself.
How to Stop Feeling So Helpless After a Tough Breakup
1. Simple Answer: Take Control Where You Can!
You can’t control that your ex ended things and you can’t go back and undo all of the problems the two of your experienced. Remember, if he has been treating your poorly, he probably did so because he has some hangups. Part of your ex’s game could be to control the structure of the relationship. Guys like this would like to see you beg to be taken back.
But the one thing that you can control is YOU. You can control your decision to end this breakup abuse cycle. Ultimately, the control freak part of your ex won’t like it because he expects you to come crawling back. But don’t. Make the choice of recognizing that this guy you were stuck with is truly a weak man.
You will feel empowered when you give yourself credit for not taking his crap any longer.
2. You Already Know What You Need To Do To Defeat the Monster: A Perpetual No Contact.
Many people think they can get away without a No Contact period. They feel pressured or emotionally obligated to let him know and keep in contact because now he is crying and is sad and asking for mercy.
Don’t put it past a man, who has done all sorts of damage to you in indescribable ways, to resort to begging and guilt trips to get you to just talk to him one more time.
So it’s not enough to sit on your bed, crossing days off the calendar as you keep your promise not to contact your ex. The real work begins with recognizing that the mean streak in your guy is still there because those that are truly really mean and hateful or also very weak when they get called out on their behavior.
3. Become The Girl Every Guy Wants
How do you do this? For starters, envision a girl who is sitting at a bar, surrounded by adoring men. She is beautiful, confident, and making all the men around her laugh and swoon. That is an Ungettable Girl. She makes men want to be with her, and she makes women jealous of her.
Now picture yourself in that place. That is what we are striving for.
4. Focus on the Holy Trinity: Health, Wealth, and Relationships.
Make a list of three or four things you want to accomplish in each area of the trinity. Whenever you start to feel helpless or vulnerable, throw yourself into one of these activities.
Push forward and adopt these core principles into all of your life activities. Remember, this bad boy who was once your boyfriend is in your past. It’s time for you to start anew.
5. Love Yourself and Date Yourself – You Are a Much Better Person To Be Around Than Your Ex
Keep the internal conversations you have with yourself forward looking . This also goes for conversations that you have with mutual acquaintances. If someone asks about your breakup, have a pleasant, canned response, and then change the subject.
Take time to do nice things for yourself. Ask yourself what might be a fun night, then go do it.
When you are able to find fulfillment in your alone time, you will be ready to embrace another soul in your life.
6. Keep Your Emotional Cool If Memories of Him Come Flooding Back
As previously mentioned, emotionally word vomiting on your ex not a healthy behavior. You may get attacked with a set of really ugly memories of what it was like when you were with him. There will be things he may have said that made you feel worthless. Keep your emotional cool in such situations.
It will happen. Undesirable memories will be set off by things.
Things are going to happen that will rattle you. He may have said things that still upset you. You have to realize that you control what you think about. And when you succumb to these bad memories, you are giving him the power to reach from the past to hurt you again. Tell yourself No.
But What If I Slip Up and Want To Just Check On My Past Boyfriend or Set Him Straight?
- Before sending any “check on” or emotionally charged text, ask yourself if you wish to dredge up the painful past because that is what will happen.
- If you are overcome with a desire to confront him one last time, pinch yourself, then slap yourself, and repeat after me, “I will not be a party to my own abuse”
- If he sends you a letter or you get a text or email and it upsets you, the best thing you can do is to ignore it completely.
- If you feel yourself losing ground and getting emotional, it is okay to excuse yourself and have a good cry. It’s healthy and will reduce the stress hormones
- Remember the rule of bad boyfriends. They seldom ever get better or learn from their mistakes. Quit trying to cure your ex boyfriend.
(Update: This post was re-written by the website owner and relationship expert and Coach, Chris Seiter on June 26, 2018. Janell Agcaoili previously contributed some of the original content )