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Dear Wendy

Contacted an ex online after 13 years, need advice

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  • #1103463 Reply

    I looked up an ex on Facebook after 13 years and sent an email. She contacted me within 90 minutes and we real timed emailed back and forth for about 30 minutes catching up etc with her asking me a lot of questions. I then had to go and she said she would contact me.

    Two weeks later, she messaged me and we exchanged a couple of emails, but not in real time. I emailed if she would like to talk on the phone instead and she emailed back to give her my phone number.

    A few days later, on a Saturday morning, she emailed me to see if I was going to be around for the weekend and what would be a good time to call. I wasn’t on the computer that Saturday and emailed back on Sunday morning to call me any time early Sunday evening.

    I didn’t hear back, so 11 days later, I emailed saying just checking in didn’t hear from you. She emailed me 3 days later apologizing stating that her uncle and nephew had Covid and she was also busy with other stuff and asked how I was doing. I emailed back I was home if she wanted to call me and then never heard from her again.

    What happened? I was hoping to be friends or just talk. Why email me then never follow up. Now I feel like a fool and an idiot. Would appreciate any feedback.


    #1103465 Reply

    Well, here are my thoughts.

    She’s an ex for a reason. You two already had a shot at a relationship and it didn’t work out. Whatever the reasons, they’re most likely still there. When she got your email, she was curious and she responded, but after some back and forth with her initial curiosity satisfied, her interest cooled off.

    She wasn’t terribly interested in talking on the phone in the first place, and then when she made the overture and you weren’t around to bite on it when it was a good time for her, she was like eh, whatever. You were only available to talk “early Sunday evening.” Which is, what, a 2 or 3 hour window on one day?

    Which brings me to, why the email and computer? Is this 1999? You don’t get emails on your phone? Most people these days are communicating via text, FaceTime, messenger apps, not email and landline. Which brings me to, is this “Robert?” Get a smartphone. Don’t make people communicate on your terms.

    Ok and finally, you say you’re looking for a friend, someone to talk to. Well, maybe she’s not. Maybe she has enough going on in her life and isn’t looking to be pen pals with an ex from 13 years ago who she broke up with for a reason. That’s ok.

    It sounds like you were pretty invested in this: 90 minutes, 30 minutes, 11 days, 3 days… If you’re looking up old exes and being so invested in it, I wonder what else is going on in your life. Not much? That’s not a dig, I mean, it’s a tough time for many people. But I can imagine that she was curious why you reached out, she asked a lot of questions and then realized, oh, ok, he doesn’t have a lot going on and is lonely. And then, curiosity satisfied, not really looking for a friend or pen pal, reminded of why you broke up, perhaps not even single… she did a polite ghost.

    So yeah, that’s probably what happened. Does that make sense?

    How old are you and what are your life circumstances? When did you last have a relationship or go on a date?

    #1103468 Reply

    This is not Robert. In terms of being invested, she messaged me back right away and I am the one who had to leave and stop our real time messaging and SHE got back to me after 2 weeks. Our messaging happened with Facebook messenger.

    I don’t know what happened since she never bothered telling me. I am in my 60’s and its been a couple of years since my last relationship.

    #1103469 Reply

    Got it. Ok she messaged you back right away because she was curious and interested why you were reaching out after 13 years. That’s why she was asking a lot of questions too.

    Letting 2 weeks go by before reaching out again indicates she was maybe still a bit curious but not excited or very invested. If she was excited to keep the conversation going and see if this could lead to something, she’d wait a couple days maybe.

    And then it fizzled out. Again, she knows why you two broke up, it’s been 13 years, you caught her up on what’s going on with you, and she doesn’t seem interested in continuing the communication. I think the chemistry and compatibility is just not there. She’s probably a normally busy woman and isn’t looking to be a pen pal with an ex.

    #1103472 Reply
    Avatar photoCopa

    I can appreciate your curiosity about the “why,” but I think this is one of those situations where you will never really know and make peace with that. I don’t think you have anything to feel foolish about, but speculating what she’s thinking or where you may have misstepped isn’t going to make that feeling go away faster.

    #1103482 Reply

    Why are you contacting an ex on Facebook after 13 years? Like what were you legitimately expecting back from her? Does she live in the same area as you? Is she single or married? Why are you so focused on this old relationship?

    This isn’t how dating happens these days.

    #1103623 Reply

    Exchanging a couple of messages on Facebook or whatever is low-investment, quick sugar hits of attention and ego boost for you both.

    When you wanted to up the stakes and investment with higher-quality, higher-signal step like a phone call, she balked. She wasn’t willing or available to take the next step with you.

    If someone wants to be with you, they’ll BE with you. They’ll make the effort, and you’ll hear back in a timely fashion, and you won’t feel strung along or guessing at all the ambiguity. Develop a loose stance and let people go who don’t intentionally engage.

    #1108802 Reply

    I think the person that said she wasn’t terribly interested in talking in the first place was right. She would have offered her phone # instead of asking for yours. She was probably being polite and a bit nosey, seeing how things have ended up for you after all these years.

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