I’ve always wondered about how different people react when they come face to face with a past lover. I did a little survey where I asked people how they felt when they had to see their ex at a social gathering or even just by accident. And ex being the man or woman you believed you were in love with, your most real relationship.
Now most people might presume that I write this because I’m still fretting over lost love. I can assure you that’s not it. Just having to go from everything to nothing can be a bit unsettling, in different ways for different people. Which is the point I want to get across through this post.
Most people feel nothing but dislike for their past lover when things didn’t end mutually. Other people can manage to be cordial but they don’t interact to much either. Here are some of the things that people told me.
“I felt really awkward seeing him randomly, we hadn’t seen each other or even spoken to each other for months. I didn’t know if I should say hi or not”
“I felt nothing really. I mean yeah, it was a little weird but it was okay”
“It was like all those memories came rushing back and I felt the immediate urge to go slap him, I forgot how much he hurt me until I saw him again”
“I saw her and I just avoided her, when she said hi I responded and just kept hoping for her to leave”
“My ex and I didn’t end on a bad note, so we still talk every now and then. But it’s a little difficult.”
“I just felt like a bittersweet emotion when I saw her. She seemed happy and I was okay with it I guess. It was weird not being together because at a point of time we were always together. But honestly, part of me was happy that she was happy.”
All these reactions are very diverse. When you end mutually it just leads to awkwardness. When it’s not mutual it leads to dislike, and when separation inevitable I guess you can try to stay friends then. My own personal opinion being, I feel traumatized when I have to see an ex who meant a lot once. Traumatized because he is a reminder of all the time and energy I spent. I learnt so much about him only to go back to being strangers with him, because somehow being friends with someone who meant a lot once is awkward and weird. You know certain things about each other and after you break up you have to set boundaries and limits.
I don’t exactly regret being with someone, I regret the extra time I wasted doing nothing but being with him and understanding him and then after breaking up just acting like strangers who don’t know anything about each other later. I think you should end it when you know it’s not working because there is no point in gaining knowledge about a person who clearly isn’t going to make it to your future. I knew it wasn’t working for a long time but I continued being with him anyway. That kept me from doing so many things that I otherwise could have done. And I feel traumatized because it’s my fault, not his. He didn’t force me to stay. I chose to. All the time that I invested in him, I could have in something else like traveling or learning something.
Your early 20’s are when you experiment and make mistakes and learn from them. I don’t think it’s the time or age to tie yourself down. There’s so much more you need to do, a relationship can wait. Finishing college and making yourself independent is what my priority should have been. I deviated from it a little but I got back on track shortly after. So honestly? I think you shouldn’t regret anything but you shouldn’t pursue something that just isn’t working because it WILL end badly. Instead do all the things that will definitely make you happy. Besides a relationship is good if it’s not interfering with your main goal, if two people grow together and support each other then that’s a good relationship. Being with someone who makes you want to grow is the right person. Who won’t compete with you or try to bring you down, someone who will trust you unconditionally. That’s who you should be with if you must be with someone at all.