[Two Pronged] How do I know if she wants me back?
Okay, so my girlfriend and I broke up some two months ago, I think. And I still love her. I made a lot of mistakes in the past. No cheating involved. Just that according to her I hold her by the neck a lot, and I guess she got suffocated. I never gave her the right to speak. And according to people we fight a lot. Isn't this normal for a relationship?
We were together for 30-plus months, and it saddens me that it had to end. I used to try to win her back, but I can't. She pushes me away. She was acting all bitchy towards me and stuff.
So I decided to cut the cord. No more communication. Till sometime when there was a typhoon and she heard there was flooding in our area. So she asked me if I'm fine. From then on we started communicating again, and it made me feel wanted again. And I don't text her first. I always wait for her to start the conversation and surprisingly, she does.
Does this mean she wants our relationship back? She talks to me. She tells me that I'm one of the people she could trust.
What do I do? I'm manhid (insensitive) btw. I can't tell if gusto niya pa (she still likes me) or not. Please help. Thank you and I'm sorry for the long explanation.
Thank you for your letter.
So, after nearly 3 years together, the combination of increasing fighting and your girlfriend (let's call her Helen) giving you clear signs that she was ready to end the relationship led you to call it quits and "cut the cord." Then came the typhoon, renewed contact initiated by her and now you wonder whether you can rekindle the romance. And all this, from breakup to your current predicament, happened in the space of "two months, you think."
Your questions are: 1) Does she want the relationship back? and 2) What do you do?
What do we know about Helen? Well, she was ready to end things with you, then she was concerned about you when the typhoon struck and now seems happy to continue to maintain contact with you. While this does not sound the stuff of Hollywood romances, it is at least a lot better than refusing to speak to you.
The answers to your questions however lie with Helen, not us. It is time to put aside the Neanderthal defense of being 'manhid' and therefore supposedly confused by feminine wiles and guiles.
Instead, how about addressing your questions to Helen herself? This is called communicating and is the best, not to mention easiest, way to get answers.
You have little to lose (at present you just hang around hoping she will contact you) and lots to gain (clarity and either a real relationship or the chance to move on).
Please write again and tell us how it works out.
All the best,
Thank you for your letter. Jeremy has shared with you THE most important factor in keeping love alive, and that is communication.
I see my role in giving you guidelines so that this communication is honest and straightforward, rather than yet another tool to win instead of to share your innermost feelings.
But before that, an observation: You relate in an all-or-nothing way, which is a no-no when what you really want is a good relationship rather than another meaningless “I win!”
For example, you state: “I'm manhid btw,” which, in black-or-white thinking, means “take it or leave it.” Actually, another way to look at it and behave is to apologize and ask help to become better than manhid.
This is so you can be a person who tries to be more sensitive than what he used to be, rather than yet again proving how arrogant you are in expecting people to simply make excuses for your poor behavior, solely because you announced it beforehand.
It is not enough to admit your faults. More is expected of you if what you want is a true relationship. That more includes asking for help, listening to what your girlfriend says could help, and then actually trying.
Another example is the following: “So I decided to cut the cord. No more communication…Then on (she started texting me) I don't text her first. I always wait for her to start the conversation and surprisingly she does. Does this mean she wants our relationship back?”
I don’t know, Jeff. Only she knows that. But one way you can increase the probability that she wants you back as a boyfriend (or make her more and more convinced that you are boyfriend material) is to be willing to live with this ambivalence for a while.
That way you are proving – and in the best way possible, without words – that you like her enough as a person to be her friend and are not insisting, “be my girlfriend or I’m out of here.”
You used to “hold her by the neck a lot,” thus suffocating her and never giving her the right to speak. Perhaps this was your belief of how a “real man” behaved. But what she (and, I daresay, most women) want is a more loving and a more realistic and open way of relating.
And yes, you may stumble and fall because this is all so new to you, but most women, as long as they feel you are really trying, will welcome this honest effort, confident that you will learn enough to be a true partner to them.
Should you wonder if all this supposedly new age brouhaha is worth it, maybe you can gain inspiration with John Dryden‘s beloved poem “Alexander's Feast” whose most constant refrain is “None but the brave deserve the fair.”
What could be more manly than being brave enough to try something you never have tried before?
All the best and good luck,
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