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When, if ever, does the dumper truly miss the dumpee? (and why?)


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Old 3rd September 2013, 11:20 AM   #1
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When, if ever, does the dumper truly miss the dumpee? (and why?)

I know this thread has been done before, but it's always nice to hear real-world information about this difficult and confusing time.

I've done a lot of reading about this online and in forums and I have seen responses all over the board. Sometimes the dumper never misses the dumpee… either because there was a strong, clear reason for breaking up or the relationship was never deep enough for the dumper to continue caring.

I've seen accounts of dumpers beginning to miss their ex as early as 3 weeks into it after the initial period of relief. Others say it generally takes at least 2-3 months, or I remember one thread I saw there was a general consensus that 6 months seemed to be the magic number for the dumper to have any change of heart. (if there was ever to be one)

There's more to it than time though, right? I would say it also depends on the circumstances of the breakup and how much the dumpee continued to fight, bargain, beg, etc. after the breakup. My theory is that every time the dumpee breaks NC it cumulatively sets back an internal reconciliation clock in the dumper. Another theory I have that I almost have to believe to keep me from breaking NC is that if the dumpee breaking NC results in a successful reconciliation, it was going to happen before long anyway because the dumper has entered the state of mind where they truly miss the dumpee.

Another of many variables is where the dumper goes in the aftermath of the breakup. Was there another person waiting in the wings? Is it a rebound or does it ever work out?

I've even heard gender generalizations... some saying that when women are the dumper they seldom come back, others say the same thing for men. After spending a lot of time on LS I really don't buy into any gender generalizations. The only one I know of there might be some truth to is that women rely more on their support network of friends/family whereas men may tend to try and sort their problems out on their own and carry out decisions without as much outside input.

I would love for everyone to share their experiences, whether dumper or dumpee.

My experience as the dumper: I broke up with a girl a couple of years ago I had been with for 6 1/2 years. We had been living together for a year and a half but I forced a breakup after getting tired of dealing with the same petty fights and bitterness over and over again. Our intimacy took a nosedive after moving in together and the idea of finding someone to reignite that spark for the both of us seemed to be the most appealing thing.

There were at least a couple of single women I knew I was attracted to and thought I had a chance with but I held off really acting on it while I was still in a relationship. They weren't exactly "waiting in the wings" and it turned out that nothing ever came of any of it. Both my ex and I were on online dating and I was fine with that, I think deep down in my heart I still believed we could be together again if I decided that's what I wanted. 2 months after the breakup she got into a new relationship and I was devastated. I believe I had started to miss her in fleeting moments leading up to that, but when I really felt I lost her I was crushed and felt I made the biggest mistake of my life.

It was very odd that I would feel exciting attractions to people that were nowhere near as good or compatible with me as my ex. Had I started to get really involved with someone in the 2-3 months after the breakup I'm sure it would have been doomed to fail, I think it would have only been a matter of time until I missed my ex and realized just how much I lost because our relationship was very deep and often very enjoyable. I forced my ex to confront what was lost when I dumped her while for me it was all delayed, waiting there for me in my subconscious.

Now I am the dumpee, and I know a lot of people may say I shouldn't even be concerned with whether or not my dumper misses me. I understand that, but when something happens that you simply don't understand, more information and insight from other cases is a comfort. I can hardly fathom the idea she will never eventually miss me, but perhaps that's my fate. I feel she did not handle the breakup gracefully at all and left me completely in the dark. If that's the case, I've wondered if pent-up guilt will ever drive the dumper to get back in touch even if they still don't wish to reconcile.
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Old 3rd September 2013, 11:35 AM   #2
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The dumper may miss the dumpee from day 1. But if they made a mature decision they will be sure that the relationship's failure was based on incompatibility and though they miss their ex, that the relationship would fail in the future as well. Thus they stay away and move on with their own lives.

Now if you're truly asking when can a second chance work it's simply when both parties grow and truly correct the issues that caused the relationship to fail in the past.
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Old 3rd September 2013, 12:12 PM   #3
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The dumper may miss the dumpee from day 1. But if they made a mature decision they will be sure that the relationship's failure was based on incompatibility and though they miss their ex, that the relationship would fail in the future as well. Thus they stay away and move on with their own lives.

Now if you're truly asking when can a second chance work it's simply when both parties grow and truly correct the issues that caused the relationship to fail in the past.
Yes, I acknowledged that the dumper may never come back. In my thread title I say, "truly miss" i.e. they feel they made a mistake and have a willingness to seek reconciliation.

When you say, "truly correct" the issues that caused the relationship to fail in the past, do you think that's something that can happen in as little as a month or do you think it takes longer? I'd like to hear about real-world cases.
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Old 3rd September 2013, 12:23 PM   #4
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It takes as long as it takes. Everyone grows and matures at different rates. But if it was something that took such little time to correct, it could mean that they are prone to jumping the gun rather than correcting these little issues. Which may bode negatively in the future and they may jump again when the next little thing happens.

So yes, it could be corrected in as little as a month; it also could take years. It all depends on the issue, the person, what they do with their time, and what they truly want in the future. If the issue is correctable, the person has good self awareness, they spend their time working on themselves, and truly want to get back with their ex... then yes, it can happen quickly.

Personally I've been talked to about reconciliations in the past and simply asked "what has changed that will make xyz not occur in the future", usually stonewalls them. Unless they have a mature response on why it truly would work you are likely to find the same fate when reentering the relationship. Answers like "You're the love of my life" and "I want to spend the rest of my life with you" won't fix the issues that caused the previous breakup.
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Old 3rd September 2013, 1:16 PM   #5
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I was seeing a girl from Dec. to May of this year. We never really got to the I love you stage...but in late April she broke things off.

At the time she said it just wasn't working or it was too much work. She was really shy and inexperienced and had told me that it takes her a long time to feel comfortable with new people. I really liked her but immediately went NC and thought that was it.

3+ months later - out of the blue - she texted me.

After a few text conversations where we laughed and chatted, we talked on the phone. Our phone call lasted over 2 hours and was great.

She finally brought up the breakup and admitted to me that it was really rough on her. That she missed me everyday and wanted to call me everyday but told herself that she couldn't. I told her that the BU was for the best at that time, but felt like we could've fixed whatever wasn't working.

She started to cry as she mentioned that she felt it was best if just moved on forward..not backward. Which was truly revealing listening to her say that she missed me and cared about me..but she said that she never felt at ease w me - for whatever reason. Which is at odds with her also wanting to reach out months later. Seeing as we never became official, it told me that she hadn't moved on yet. For the past few months I had thought she was gone and never felt anything for me....but I was wrong.

Despite that, the phone call was great. She knew we couldn't be just friends and knew that we probably wouldn't be speaking soon.

So. It was surprising to hear that she cared that much, so much so that she needed to reach out. But it still wasn't enough for her to want to get back together.
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Old 3rd September 2013, 1:20 PM   #6
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they miss you everyday, especially if it was a LTR, but best way to make them miss you to the point of regretting what they did would be to completely disappear...NC NC NC

it worked for me, 40 days NC I got a long email from my ex apologizing for everything, saying she messed up etc etc and we are now taking things, slow, hanging out and communicating and will see what happens from here

if you want them to miss you, you need to let them go and disappear for a while, between 30-90 days it seems for most.
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Old 3rd September 2013, 1:23 PM   #7
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Smile Correcting Issues...

Hi,

I put myself into sorting anxiety issues (from childhood trauma), relationship counselling, reading books, sharing and reading on this great forum, exercising, looking for a new job, walking, watching movies, writing, new hair cut, went 180 and LC, etc.,.

From all this, you learn that:

a) a reconciliation may never come
b) it is all for me and my future
c) her positive response may not be romantically minded
d) she's intrigued and is less guarded with me; but, the future is uncertain
e) could take up to 2 years to reconcile, if ever...
f) she sees us as broken up, so, she might date first before anything else - or she may date and then divorce me
g) the future is uncertain ????????????

I believe in the majority of cases, the dumper will grieve and miss the dumpee - they're human too (well, most are!). Depends on reasons for split/separation in the first place. I am doing things she asked me to do before now, so, recently:

1. We're talking without arguing, sharing a laugh, talking about work and kids, what we're doing (to a point), successes and failures

2. We play games together on our iPhones (Scrabble, etc.,) on a rolling tournament situation

3. We're still married on FB and still wear our wedding rings (for how much longer I don't know)

4. She calls to chat every so often when not busy and alone

5. She's been supportive with my job hunting and interviews - offers advice saying I need to get one asap and my own place (currently at families in a room!)

I think you have to stop analysing and worrying about what they're thinking and just judge the actions. So far, I think we're rebuilding trust, trying to get on, being friendly, and without any expectations. It will be what it will be, nothing more and nothing less - I personally do not want a bitterness or resentment filled relationship with her as we have a little girl.
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Old 3rd September 2013, 2:53 PM   #8
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My ex dumped me after 3 years together, and I finally decided to go NC last week (we broke up in April). Sad, I know, but I was weak and kept responding to breadcrumbs. When I told him I wanted NC, he sent me an email about how he thought about me everyday and missed me all the time. But he was scared and was protecting himself and still confused about the future.

So yes, he missed me, and I was shocked that he was so vulnerable with me and admitted as much. He was always very logical and unemotional about most things. I think him missing me made him reconsider things, but I think it hasn't been long enough. I also think he hasn't, like you said, faced the prospect of losing me entirely. So he remained undecided. I've heard it said that if someone is scared to commit, you have to replace that fear with a bigger fear: the fear of losing the other person. Then, the true intentions come out.

But missing me didn't make him definitively want to get back together with me at the time he wrote the email. So I'm not terribly moved by it at this point. I mean, we lived together, so I am sure he did miss me not being there. I am disappearing from his life for my own sanity.
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Old 3rd September 2013, 4:30 PM   #9
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Thanks so much for the responses, everyone.

3 months for Antares even though there was no reconciliation.... sounds like you got some real closure from an interaction which I think is very rare, usually it just makes it worse.

LifeGoesOnMan, tomorrow it will be 40 days since I've heard from her! But not 40 days of NC... last she heard from me was I commented on a picture she uploaded on FB August 15. 3 weeks until I hit 40 days NC. I also wrote her a 1-page front/back letter a week after I last heard from her... most would say that was a mistake but I do think I said a thing or two I had truly neglected to say and was sincere about it.

Wish you the best, MrE_UK. I too have truly done a lot since becoming single. I can honestly say I've been doing all the things I said I wanted to do when I was still with her. Getting in shape, (my running times have improved dramatically) new clothes, I have seen a bunch of new state/city parks, I got a dog, and now I'm awaiting new carpet being installed at my home. All things I'm sure she's gathered from my FB. Not sure how much more productive I can be than that! It probably looks like I am too busy to be thinking about her, but I'm still far from that.

BC1980, that's interesting to hear. My ex makes herself out to be someone who is not overly emotional. If I had to pick a candidate for someone who would have too much pride to ever break the silence, she would be it. It's really hard for me to imagine her contacting me out of the blue someday. Then again there's part of me that thinks she's going to get tired of some of the other things in her life like going out to bars and dealing with her irresponsible friends/roommates and then she'll miss me.

I'm wondering if anyone out there has any accounts of a dumper having a change of heart or moment of clarity that isn't prompted by something bad happening. Otherwise I have the suspicion that it takes a rude awakening for the dumper to have a change of heart.
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Old 3rd September 2013, 6:10 PM   #10
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Thanks so much for the responses, everyone.

3 months for Antares even though there was no reconciliation.... sounds like you got some real closure from an interaction which I think is very rare, usually it just makes it worse.

Yes and No. NC after the break up up to that phone call was relatively easy. Because I assumed she was relieved that we broke up. That she felt nothing for me and was ready to move on. She finally contacted me after a family crisis, looking for comfort (despite saying that she never felt at ease w me) when she was down and finally listened to her heart - instead of her head.

Hearing her cry and say how much she missed me, that I was the most genuine guy she's ever met, or liked hearing my voice (all after a 2 hour chat where we laughed and teased each other, talked about her family situation, etc) that actually didn't make me feel better.

It's weird. I've moved on a bit..started going on a few (rather lame) dates but I miss her incredibly. She's a wonderful person. Everything I've read on here on NC was to avoid (ME) getting emotional over the dumper moving on, etc. I never imagined that she would admit feelings and yet still not want to get back.

So that was closure...but a tough pill to shallow. So now it's back to NC. I still think she might come around but I can't wait for it.

So yeah...dumpers come back for all sorts of reasons. Some selfish, and some just because they honestly want to hear from an important person who used to be a part of their lives.
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Old 3rd September 2013, 8:11 PM   #11
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/Sticking to a theme to curiosity strictly... knowing there are lots of variables involved in this, as I probably have reiterated ad nauseum, if they miss you truly, etc...
How do things like if cheating was involved on the part of the dumpee, if he or she had an emotional affair so to speak, left a relationship to pursue what is perceived as greener grass amongst other acts of immaturity impact these feelings? Would those factors being present [that these things did happen] creep up later on a dumper if he or she jumped right into a relationship - like, say, the day of if not the day after he proverbial D-Day - and buried feelings about having just abandoned a good relationship, person? If so, how would the proverbial creeping up of these feelings, etc affect the relationship the affair-ee/dumpee, and situations in general?

Lots of Qs I know, I like analysis of all these dynamics

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Old 3rd September 2013, 10:07 PM   #12
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BC1980, that's interesting to hear. My ex makes herself out to be someone who is not overly emotional. If I had to pick a candidate for someone who would have too much pride to ever break the silence, she would be it. It's really hard for me to imagine her contacting me out of the blue someday. Then again there's part of me that thinks she's going to get tired of some of the other things in her life like going out to bars and dealing with her irresponsible friends/roommates and then she'll miss me.
I think it just shocked him out of his mind that I would ever actually request NC. So it took that for him to send the email. I'm not one bit surprised that he's still confused though. I give him credit for being vulnerable in the email, but it was still all of his usual, wishy washy BS. He even said how hard it had been for him to see me slipping away over the past month because I never called or acted interested in his texting. I mean, I was shocked that he even noticed or admitted such. He even thought I had a boyfriend. That one made me laugh.

At least NC has given me my sanity back:-) I truly am doing it for myself and not to get him back.
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Old 4th September 2013, 9:02 AM   #13
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LifeGoesOnMan, tomorrow it will be 40 days since I've heard from her! But not 40 days of NC... last she heard from me was I commented on a picture she uploaded on FB August 15. 3 weeks until I hit 40 days NC. I also wrote her a 1-page front/back letter a week after I last heard from her... most would say that was a mistake but I do think I said a thing or two I had truly neglected to say and was sincere about it.
you gotta disappear, for real. commenting on fb pics and writing letters just proves you haven't let her go & that shes on your mind .., even if you haven't let go in your heart & mind, she needs to think that you have...its weird but it works like that.. I don't make the rules lol
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Old 4th September 2013, 11:36 AM   #14
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Yes and No. NC after the break up up to that phone call was relatively easy. Because I assumed she was relieved that we broke up. That she felt nothing for me and was ready to move on. She finally contacted me after a family crisis, looking for comfort (despite saying that she never felt at ease w me) when she was down and finally listened to her heart - instead of her head.

Hearing her cry and say how much she missed me, that I was the most genuine guy she's ever met, or liked hearing my voice (all after a 2 hour chat where we laughed and teased each other, talked about her family situation, etc) that actually didn't make me feel better.
I see. There must be some comfort in hearing positive things about you though, right? I know you shouldn't let your ex control your emotions but it's only human to feel good when they miss you and not feel good when they don't care about you.

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How do things like if cheating was involved on the part of the dumpee, if he or she had an emotional affair so to speak, left a relationship to pursue what is perceived as greener grass amongst other acts of immaturity impact these feelings? Would those factors being present [that these things did happen] creep up later on a dumper if he or she jumped right into a relationship - like, say, the day of if not the day after he proverbial D-Day - and buried feelings about having just abandoned a good relationship, person? If so, how would the proverbial creeping up of these feelings, etc affect the relationship the affair-ee/dumpee, and situations in general?
If I understand you correctly, you're asking when does the dumper begin to miss the dumpee if they leave due to a case of GIGS? I feel I left my ex due to GIGS, i.e. there wasn't an obvious reason why we should break up and it was the only serious relationship either of us had been in. My ex beat me to the punch on getting in a relationship, and that's what caused me to miss her more than I ever imagined.

If I had to guess, I think I would have started to miss my ex after a month or two of spending time with a rebound spark. At the time my brain was off on another planet, and I wasn't seeing things very clearly. I took a lot for granted, and ran into the problem of seeing worlds of potential in people that weren't even a great fit for me. I got really excited about how they were different than my ex, but once reality set in and I had to deal more with the things about them that weren't so great I believe I would have started to really second-guess leaving my ex. imo there's a feeling of relief and excitement about new possibilities when you dump someone, but it's a honeymoon phase that wears off. When the bad times hit, you're going to look back on your ex more and more fondly.

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At least NC has given me my sanity back:-) I truly am doing it for myself and not to get him back.
I'll admit when I got into NC my main drive was to hopefully get my ex to reconsider... now I see just how much I needed it. You have to get yourself back before anything else positive can happen!

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you gotta disappear, for real. commenting on fb pics and writing letters just proves you haven't let her go & that shes on your mind .., even if you haven't let go in your heart & mind, she needs to think that you have...its weird but it works like that.. I don't make the rules lol
I understand that now. It's been almost 3 weeks since I posted that comment on her FB and a month since I wrote the letter. Other than that she hasn't heard a peep from me, no phone calls, texts, I don't talk to any of her friends about it, nothing. I started letting go soon after I posted that comment... took down our pictures we had on FB and changed my status back to single. I'm working on taking all that energy I've spent thinking about her and putting it towards myself.

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Old 4th September 2013, 12:44 PM   #15
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I understand that now. It's been almost 3 weeks since I posted that comment on her FB and a month since I wrote the letter. Other than that she hasn't heard a peep from me, no phone calls, texts, I don't talk to any of her friends about it, nothing. I started letting go soon after I posted that comment... took down our pictures we had on FB and changed my status back to single. I'm working on taking all that energy I've spent thinking about her and putting it towards myself.
good, then you are well on your way my friend, I cannot tell you how long it will take to hear from your ex, but I can tell you it will get easier every day to deal with what your dealing with now, and it gives you the best chance @ reconciling with her.. I hope it works out for you, was it a LTR?

also..I've learned the most attractive thing to women is having your own life and being able to be happy by yourself, and knowing you don't need someone else to be happy (never put the key to your happiness in someone else's pocket, and never make someone a priority if they only make you an option)

you got this bro =]
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