The Things We Tell Our Exes and What We Really Mean Deep Down
Breaking up with someone is painful and devastating. You both end up with a million questions left unanswered, a million things left unsaid, and a million what ifs that will haunt your head until your brain decides to just forget. So when you finally see your ex for the first time after the breakup or when he finally decides to contact you, you don't know how to deal.
Below, we've listed down a few lines we commonly tell our exes and what we usually mean when we say them—or this could also serve as a guide for you if you're the kind of ex who gets in touch with your ex after the heartbreak; we know you'll need to decipher what they really mean and just quit bugging them altogether.
"How are you?"
What we actually want to say: "Have you been seeing anyone?" or "Are you still thinking of me as often as I do?"
When I ask about how you've been doing, I want to know if you've been seeing anyone since the first day we walked through different doors. And if you are, I want to know if you look for the pieces that fill the void of the cracks that I left on your skin. I want to know if you sometimes confuse her shadows with mine or if you sometimes see a faint vision of my face in her eyes. I want to know your tricks, get a few tips on how you forgot so easily and how you brushed our things aside as if they were as light as a speck of dust. But if you're not, I want to know: do you think about me as often as I do? I want to know if you still remember how my hands feel against yours. I want to know. How are you?
What we actually want to say: "I'm letting you go."
When I tell you to take care of yourself, I mean I'm letting you go. I am setting you free. I know you'll do a better job at taking care of yourself than me. I know that you'll give a better kind of love, the best kind of love once I tear down the walls I've built around you. I want you to have a taste of freedom and the power of taking control.
"I miss you."
What we actually want to say: "Life has been hard since we parted." or "Please tell me you miss me, too."
When I tell you that I miss you, I want you to know that life has been hard since the day we decided we're better off apart. That it wasn't easy getting through days and weeks and months on my own. That I know getting to be with my own shadow for a while will take some getting used to. That you left a hole in my chest and that somehow, I've been finding ways to fill that space and cover it up. When I tell you that I miss you, I want you to know that I want to know if you've had it hard too. That throwing away what we used to have is a challenge. But most of all, when I tell you that I miss you, I want you to tell me you miss me, too.
What we actually want to say: "I badly want to un-know you." or "Don't ever talk to me again." or "Stay away from me."
When I pretend to not know who you are, I want to tell you that I'm already on my way to make it out of this mess alive. That you attempting to walk back into my life with a call, an e-mail, or a private message isn't helping one bit to make this easier for me, so I want you to back off and stay away from me. I want you to know that when I pretend to not know who you are, what I'm actually thinking is that if I had my way, if I had the chance, if this were possible, I'd un-know you. In a heartbeat.
"Stay away from me."
What we actually want to say: "I don't want to see you again!" or "I don't need you in my life." or "Get out of my radar!"
When I tell you to stay away from me, know that I mean those words. Know that even though I'll forget them a bit at times or even though there are moments when I take teeny tiny steps back to you again, I still know deep down that I don't need someone like you in my life. That I've come to accept the fact that moving on means that you need to get out of my radar, so I can stop seeing you and stop memorizing the specifics of how you're wired down to the last cell of your entire being.
Got guy troubles you want us to help you with? Let us know in the comments, and we'll try our best to