By Chris Seiter

Updated on February 2nd, 2021

“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

upset woman

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?”

What Are Your Chances of Getting Your Ex Boyfriend Back?

Take the quiz

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?

sad girl

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

reflecting on the rocks

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.

What Are Your Chances of Getting Your Ex Boyfriend Back?

Take the quiz

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

checking out of life

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?

  1. Don’t advertise to him or anyone that you miss him
  2. Institute a strict policy of No Contact
  3. Indulge in yourself.  Put yourself first.
  4. Plan on a special outing with friends and leave to do something you have never done before.
  5. 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.
  6. Finding peace within yourself through meditation, yoga, and participation in community activities.
  7. 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.

  1. 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.
  2. 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
  3. Doing the things you are asked to do during the No Contact Period will lift your self esteem and confidence.
  4. After you get away from a serial cheater and manipulator, you will see your ex for what he really is.  A weak, insecure loser.
  5. 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

feeling helpless

What Are Your Chances of Getting Your Ex Boyfriend Back?

Take the quiz

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?

  1. 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.
  2. 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”
  3. 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.
  4. 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
  5. Remember the rule of bad boyfriends.  They seldom ever get better or learn from their mistakes.  Quit trying to cure your ex boyfriend.


What to Read Next

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

21 thoughts on “How To Stop Missing Your Toxic Ex And Forget Him Forever”

  1. mariah

    March 26, 2022 at 6:00 pm

    So last night i had broken up with my now Ex of 3 months. We were best friends but his anxiety about everything paired with his depression, turned into disrespecting me and shaming me for things he made up in his head.
    By telling me to shut the “F**ck up” Or to ”F*cking leave i dont f*cking care” after a fight was resolved but he decided to be angry about it the next day.

    Then he told me “you were being a C*nt*” when i would tearfully reply “what? Dont call me names you know its wrong” He would say “well maybe you shouldn’t act like a B*tch”

    Our good times were so good, but when a switch in his head flipped, all respect and love and compassion was thrown out the window. Leaving me crying in a ball whilst he leaned over screaming, shaming and gaslighting me.

    He said his ex of 7 years abused him, but im done making excuses, this website helped so much. I was considering going to his place today (the next day) to get the rest of my stuff, but i need time.

    3 months into a relationship, turned into a valuable lesson. I will not except less again.

  2. Gracelyn

    December 28, 2021 at 6:37 pm

    Hello this is one of the best articles on your site.

    I have to say, I did write my ex a well thought out goodbye text after he broke up with me out of the blue, called me 6 weeks later with a non-apology to make himself feel good while shifting blame and wanting to remain friends because he was not well and he missed me. Very selfish and manipulative if you ask me.

    As much as the breakup and subsequent “apology
    Hurt, it gave me more clarity that I do in fact deserve so much better in my life. Then I proceeded to block him.

    I of course still love and miss him. He can be charming and loving though not consistantly. He thought he was better than me so why would he still want me around? Does not make sense and I deserve someone who loves me for who I am, just as I love.

    Your article was very helpful. Thanks.

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      January 10, 2022 at 4:56 pm

      Hey Gracelyn, so happy to hear you realise your worth and you deserve better! Glad the article was helpful too!

  3. Amy Pipe

    October 12, 2021 at 12:18 am

    This is such a helpful read, thank you.
    I have come to recognize that my ex used silent treatment as a way to manipulate my emotions. And that his half a bottle of whiskey a day, no matter how functional he was, was always going to be the love of his life. After a year of self work, I still want to reach out to him though.
    It’s the empathy in us, trying desperately to “fix” broken things.

  4. H

    September 17, 2020 at 8:33 pm

    Thank you for this article. I was in a relationship for 11 years and the manipulation started in 1st year. I was so vulnerable and lonely I let it slide. Then came the day when I was done. I walked away from him and it was really hard. A lot of angry correspondence but I apologized in a 2 paragraph letter. My side of the street is clean. Yes I miss him, spent a lot of time in bed,, but when I think of all the BS I put up with it pushes me forward. I.m 59 in good health have a lot going for me just hope to meet someone who of course will be better, once i am healed.. Are they out there??? Lol. Thank you much

  5. July

    April 1, 2020 at 10:38 am

    My ex and I were together almost 2 years, broke up almost 3 months ago. I really did love him but now in hindsight I realize that he never loved me and I accept that. His shitty ways have nothing to do with me, he’s just an ugly person. After almost a year of dealing with his emotional, mental, verbal, physical abuse, and constant cheating yet accusing me…I left him! I’m so happy and never looking back. I just absolutely HATE how sometimes my mind starts wandering and I start to miss him! Why? I always stop it. I have no desire to get back together. Should I block him on everything?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      April 2, 2020 at 10:41 pm

      Hi July it takes time to get someone truly out of our system, and as you said you had a two year relationship I would say that it is gong to take around 6 months for you to be over the break up, but if you were also in a toxic relationship where there was abuse and being cheated on and treated so poorly it may be a good idea to seek out a therapist to help you deal with those emotions before oyu are ready to meet someone else in the future

  6. Sadgrl

    January 22, 2020 at 3:48 pm

    6 year relationship with my ex. I did no contact no problem. He had a fiance and brought her over before I even moved out. I was relieved at first but now a year later, I’m falling apart. I miss him and his kids so much. I only can think of the good memories and wake up on a panic every night. I’m extremely depressed.

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      January 22, 2020 at 7:36 pm

      Hi there sadgirl, but the sounds of things you need to seek therapy to help you deal with the emotions you are going through. It is unfair what he did to you and it is normal that you be upset, the issue is that you are struggling with these feelings a year later. Search local therapists or visit your GP for a recommendation for the best therapist to speak to

  7. December

    November 28, 2019 at 6:07 am

    I was with this boy for 2 years and in that time I was sent screenshots and proof that he had cheated but I refused to believe it. He constantly made me feel like crap about myself and my life and would constantly guilt trip me and tell me that I wasn’t worth trusting. I stayed loyal even though he wasn’t and I took him back time and time again because I loved him. He’s now with the girl he told me not to worry about, and is cheating on her as well. He was manipulative, controlling and emotionally abusive. He made me feel so worthless all the time. But I still love him and it still hurts me to see him and to see her. I’ve found myself an amazing man who supports me completely, and is understanding and comforting about this situation, which we’ve discussed fully, but I feel so guilty because I find it hard to trust anyone else with my heart or feelings. This new man is amazing and so caring and loving and understanding and he’s worthy of my love and trust, and I know that. I just find myself shying away and closing myself off with fear. I’m trying my best to get over my toxic ex and that toxic relationship because it’s affecting my life now, but it’s difficult. I’m glad that the gentleman I’m with now understands and is respectful but in all honesty it makes me feel horrible because he’s so calm and understanding, it’s almost like my mind has grown used to anger and abuse, like I miss it or something and that’s messed up. I just want to be okay again 🙁

  8. Stacey Thomson

    October 20, 2019 at 6:49 pm

    My ex and I have kids together. We were together 5 years and for those 5 years he was great, it’s after the breakup he has turned into a nasty person.
    He broke up with me 4 months ago and is already in a relationship with a girl 10 years younger than him.
    We agreed that any partners wouldn’t meet the kids unless it’s serious and we talk about it but he has gone ahead and introduce her to my kids.
    I’ve cut contact with him unless it’s to do with the kids but now he is demanding when he can see them and that it is his way or no way. He is also threatening to take the kids away from me. He is not the man I know he is disrespectful and rude. Any advice?

    1. EBR Team Member: Shaunna

      October 20, 2019 at 10:18 pm

      First of all seek professional advice regarding to the children but I know majority courts would side with the mother giving you are stable and the main carer for the children. I would continue as you are with limited no contact, his behavior is unfair towards you so stay strong and make sure you focus on becoming stronger and know your worth and what he is doing is below you

  9. Traumatized and recovering

    August 4, 2019 at 3:45 pm

    What do you do when a breakup is a series of misunderstandings, your ex says it is all your fault and does not see his part, then completely loses his sh*t and becomes abusive, accusing you of cheating, lying, and taking all confidences shared with them to digitally abuse, stalk and attack you? He spent 8 hours the day the misunderstandings happened sending incredibly abusive and vile messages electronically on all social media platforms. I thought we had broken up and cancelled plans to visit him. He claimed no such thing, however his text message said he would not be trying again and I responded that I was sorry it could not work out because of me. He assumed I was still going to visit him and freaked out because he claimed to have spent money on a hotel room. I chose no contact for 3.5 weeks and then he sent an email about how he had lost faith and was quitting his job. Sucker that I was, I reached out and apologized for my part in the ending of the relationship and offered some comforting words that he would find something better. He lied. It was just to bait me and call me names and be hurtful. I am clear his behavior is off the charts and not acceptable and very, very abusive. He told me all women cheat on him and he doesn’t trust anyone. I did not cheat on him. I found out he did cheat on me after the blowout. What do I do? I don’t want him back. How do I get him to leave me alone. I have gone back to NC. I have blocked everything from him and refuse to even read his rantings. Yes, it all seems incredibly insane. And it has been. He even messaged me to tell me he is not torn up about it and that he won’t ever ask about how I am doing again. I hope so.

    Traumatized and recovering

    1. Chris Seiter

      August 4, 2019 at 11:06 pm

      I know what you are going thru is hard. You should think about it in terms of wrapping yourself around a sensible ex recovery plan that focuses both on your personal healing and recovery journey as well as doing things that can advance your efforts in getting your ex back. That is what my Program is about. Take a look at my “Ex Boyfriend Recovery Pro Bundle” as it deals with all of this in a comprehensive way.

  10. Di

    June 18, 2019 at 6:24 pm

    I just purchased The No Contact Rule. Hopefully it helps. Thank you!

    1. Chris Seiter

      June 18, 2019 at 7:35 pm

      Hi Di…I wrote the No Contact Rule Book to help people not to just understand how NC works in every way, but also to help them with the part of No Contact many people forget to focus on which is the “recovery/healing” part of the process. That is so important as it helps you feel good about yourself and prepares you for whatever might come down the line. Best of luck to you Di.

  11. Paul

    June 11, 2019 at 10:42 am

    I am obsessing over my toxic ex girlfriend. I cant get her out of my thoughts. I miss her. I fear she is forming a new relationship. She refused to communicate with m at all. I sense in hindsight she was pulling away long before she dumped me. She is a fearful or dismissive avoidant attachment type. I tried too hard to please her during our 8 month relationship – I was innovative and thoughtful around things like valentines day and her birthday. Id cook for her 2 or 3 times a week, surprise her constantly with spontaneous fun things to do. Took time off work and looked after her while she was sick, supported her through family conflict and grief around her departed grandparents. So much more also.

    In return – very little. Not that I expected her to match my effort – but there was virtually no effort. Why did I allow this to happen, and why can I not just be grateful she is gone? Its 8 weeks and Im still consumed by grief and sadness. I know this cant be healthy.

    1. Chris Seiter

      June 11, 2019 at 6:13 pm

      HI Paul….yes, your focus should be on your healing and engaging in recovery activities. I talk about this and how to go about it extensively in my Program. I know you can do this!

  12. Di

    June 3, 2019 at 7:34 pm

    I feel like my toxic ex will never completely go away. We were together 5 years. He cheated, I threw him out, he lived with her for 2 1/2 months. He came crawling back, 4 months later I catch him with her again! Threw him out. They lasted 3 1/2 months, came crawling back, wanting to be friends and I stupidly agreed. He stayed at my house 4 months, because he acted suicidal but was really just manipulating me. Dumped me again for her! Done! Came crawling back, NOPE! He was at my work (bar) every single day for 2 months. He kept trying to talk to me, call, text. I gave him no attention. Finally I got fed up. My coworkers told me he was trying to get with the other servers. I lost it, my boss told him not to come in when I’m there. He’s now working on my second coworker. My heart is battered and bruised. I’ve been no contact, but he still goes in my work when I’m not there to hit on her and she’s eating it up. I have no clue how to rid myself of these awful feelings and this deep depression but I’m trying these suggestions. Any other suggestions are welcomed!!

    1. Chris Seiter

      June 3, 2019 at 11:32 pm

      Hi Di… sounds like you have been thru a lot. My eBook, “The No Contact Rule Book” has a lot of good information in it on dealing with healing and recovery.

  13. Nik

    March 31, 2019 at 2:55 am

    Me n my bf was in relationship for last 8 years. Mostly we was fighting on topic of marriage. He introduced me to his family 5 years back, his parents accepted thn I introduced him in my family, my parents was not supportive as he is not settled n still learning his MBA. We fight in 2015, we came back again in a month. Our parents didn’t know abt us getting back together. He told his parents in 2017 and thy accepted, my parents accepted him..everything was going good, then we fight again on the topic when to do Marriage..and that fight was the worst one..he involved his parents. His parents called my parents n called off our marriage. After 2 months he came back to me n we was together. He got admission in good college, I got great salary job and executive MBA seat in good college. We was happy. He made so many promises abt engagement ring, baby, home, vacation and everything that we couldn’t do it in last 8 years because of struggle.. Then we decided to talk to our families about marriage again. He went to his home n tried to convince his parents for 10 days, but his parents said No and if u want to marry her thn leave this house. Then he gave up on me. And accepted the fact that marriage will not happen. I couldn’t accept the fact I tried to talk to his parents but they clearly said No and don’t contact us hereafter again. My bf called me and told me to accept the fact. I tried to message him after that call but no reply. He is angry on me n he is not ready to talk or meet me as his parents told him not to be in any contact with me. He gave me so much awesome memories and I can’t rid of that. I planned and dreamed my entire life with him. My parents want me to look another man for marriage which I can’t. N I don’t know how to move on, how to accept another man, how to marry another man. Just don’t get anything. Please suggest me.