Going through a breakup can generate a range of emotions like depression and anger, and the rejected person is entitled to their own space to suss out their feelings.
Redditor throwra_qazwsx555 was denied that opportunity for contemplation when his girlfriend broke up with him.
After feeling utterly confused, he turned to Reddit’s Relationship Advice column to see if the online community can make heads or tails of his post-breakup plight.
The Original Poster (OP) asked:
“My girlfriend (23 F[emale]) broke up with me (22 M[ale]) and now says I’m being toxic and a misogynist for not wanting to stay friends?”
“I’ve known her for 3 years, we dated pretty casually for 2 of those.”
“She broke up with me last week and now things are getting weird. Her whole thing with the breakup was that she ‘lost feelings’ for me and felt it was finally time to tell me since I wasn’t getting her hints (apparently she’s felt this way for 3 or 4 months now).”
“I keep telling her I needed space and want some time away from her but every time I try to distance myself she freaks out.”
The OP discovered that being completely honest with his ex-girlfriend was a big mistake.
“Today I told her I just needed some time to think and I felt betrayed and she went OFF on me.”
“She spent about an hour telling me how toxic it was to not be willing to just stay friends with her and how I was a misogynist f’kboy because it meant that I was only with her for the chance to get laid.”
“I love her a lot but she’s the one who broke up with me and I’m not sure why she thinks she can just be friends after that.”
“I don’t know why she wants that in the first place. Has anyone gone through something similar and can help me understand what her perspective might be on this?”
“I’m not sure and any time I ask her for details she shuts down hard.”
The OP asked for the help of anonymous strangers to see if they could shed some light on the ex-girlfriend’s behavior.
Astentia flat-out told the OP that, “She’s being….crazy,” and asked if he can just cut off all contact with her.
The OP replied:
“I can but I’m not hopeful it will work. She tends to blow up my phone if I don’t message her for a few days.”
But Astentia offered a simple solution.
“Block her. Don’t feel bad, you only have yourself to take care of.”
“The more you reply to her the more she will keep making you miserable.”
But it seemed the OP was struggling with the suggestion to isolate himself from her.
“I mean I do feel bad though. Seems like whenever I try to tell her I’m going to not reply or something, she says she knew it would happen and then starts apologizing and saying she’ll leave me alone, and that she knows she’s made mistakes and ‘deserves’ to be blocked.”
“Then I feel like I’m kicking a puppy if I do.”
The OP added:
“She’s had some pretty major issues with chronic depression in the past so I don’t feel like she’s being manipulative, she really seems to feel that badly about herself.”
This Redditor only had this to say in response to the OP’s “kicking a puppy” comment.
“The abuse is working well apparently.” – AffectionateReading7
Redditors started losing patience with the OP’s reluctance to move on.
“This is manipulation. Stop responding completely, and if you cannot, block her.”
“It is not punishing her, it is not cruel, it is you sitting a healthy boundary to protect yourself.” – Froggetpwagain
“That’s actually a classic abusive tactic.”
“She does something bad to you, you react appropriately, and she has a ‘Big Sad’ that requires you to comfort her (Even though she’s clearly in the wrong,) and suddenly she’s turned it all around on you, and you’re the bad guy.”
“This is emotional abuse. She’s controlling you with her own sadness and guilt. It’s pretty gross on her part.” – Alma_knack
“OP, this is emotional manipulation.”
“‘Oh, I’m awful and worthless, of COURSE you dont want to be friends with me.’ How is that going to make you feel/react?”
“If you’re a decent person, odds are your immediate response will be, ‘of course you’re not worthless or awful, I’m so sorry, I didnt mean it, let me make you feel better!'”
“And then the cycle continues.”
“She doesn’t want to date you, but she also doesn’t want to lose the emotional support that you give her.”
“Shes trying to have her cake and eat it too. Its NORMAL for people to talk less when they break up! That’s LITERALLY part of the process!”
“Tell her you will no longer allow her to emotionally manipulate you. You need space from her, and you are going to take it.”
“Shes a big girl who needs to learn how to live without you.” – SA_Starling_
A campaign to kick the “puppy” soon emerged.
“Then kick that f’king puppy.”
“She’s emotionally manipulating you dude. She wants to have her cake (you, emotionally wrapped around her finger) and eat it too (f’k other dudes).”
“F’k that sh*t.” – celtickerr
“Yeah, this ‘puppy’ of yours is purposefully chewing and pissing all over your heart and you’re enabling her to keep doing so.”
“Dropkick that puppy to next Tuesday by just honestly ghosting her. You deserve healing and time away from her.” – LifeIsString
No means no.
“She’s not respecting your boundaries. You don’t have to associate with anyone you don’t want to. It’s that simple.”
“She’s toxic if she doesn’t respect your limits. Block her and don’t look back. You don’t have to justify or explain yourself to her; ‘No’ is a complete sentence.” – neanderloo
This Redditor saw the ex-girlfriend’s intentions clear as day.
“Seems like she wants your love, support and attention, and wants to be able to have that without being your GF. She wants to be ‘friends’ so you can continue to treat her well and boost her confidence, while she looks around for something better and will then label you a complete stalker when she finds a new bf.”
“Take screen shots, be direct, be civil, walk away.”
The Redditor continued with this imagined dialogue as a guide for a future conversation.
“Listen, I know you’d like for us to be friends, but surely you can see how hurtful that would be to me, right now, after you broke up with me. I need some time to get over you. (bleurgh, but it’ll flatter her) Maybe in a few months we can reassess things.”
“If she starts with the f’kboi stuff again, tell her you had feelings for her, you had a physical relationship and maybe your feeling just ran deeper than hers, and you need time to heal.”
“Screenshot any insults or blatant manipulation because once she realises she’s not getting her own way, she’ll tell anyone who’ll listen how awful you are. Have your receipts.”
“Edit to add… If you really want to get under her skin, tell her that you’re chatting to someone you really like at the moment and she’s not too keen on you hanging with your exes. It will be like in cartoons when you can see the steam coming out of someone’s ears.” – jenzo2
The Redditors have spoken and it’s now up to the OP to decide whether he should wallow in his dejection or just go and drop-kick that puppy.