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Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Savvy mail call: Contacting my ex-girlfriend?

Howdy folks, every once in awhile someone writes to me asking me to help them with affairs of the heart. This is a question I hear all too commonly.


I enjoy reading your blog very much.
I hope you don't mind me emailing you, but I thought you might be able to give me some advice:

In 2010, for 2 months I dated a Christian woman. We spent a lot of time together and things seemed good between us. Then she broke things off suddenly after telling me she was enjoying the single life too much and didn't need a boyfriend in her life.
Anyway, we went our separate ways amicably and I wished her all the success in the future etc. We had no contact with each other again until this week. I decided to email her to see how things were with her. She replied 2 days later -

1. Thanking me for my email
2. Asking 2 questions how things were with me and the work I'm involved with.
3. And she ended with the words "keep in touch".

I replied to her email a day later and in my email also asked her a question about her own work and what she was doing in it. (We both work in the same type of work).

I was expecting a reply maybe tomorrow or even two days time. But she replied 2 hours later with a fairly long email about her work and its challenges and her plans for the summer. She wished me good luck with my job hunting & said if she hears any job prospects she will let me know.

There were no questions in this email from her.

So, in short, I'm confused. One one one hand, she emailed me back very quickly. On the other hand, she didn't ask me any questions and & wished me good luck with my job hunting. My over analytical mind suggests she is not really leaving the door open for further conversation?

What do you think?


In case I didn't say it, thanks for reading! Here is my response:

Hi Michigan,

Thanks for contacting me. She might be interested in you again, she might not. Unless you call her up and ask her if she wants to go out for a date, you'll be stuck in this lala land for months.

If you want her in your life even as a friend, tell her that it's fine if she just wants to be friends, but you are still interested.

Either you wrote to me before under a different pen name, or this is a very common problem.

Take care,

Thanks for reading! Please leave a comment!


Shena said...

I don't think she's interested. This may sound bad, but she may have disclosed a lot because sometimes women may use men emotionally the way men use women physically when they know the other one is interested.

The fact that she did not ask about him, but focused on himself says a lot. He may be setting himself up for heartbreak. But on the other hand, at least he'll know for sure and won't keep questioning and analyzing what this means and what that means.

SavvyD said...

It's better to end the mystery than forever wonder what could have been "if only."

me said...

Thanks so much for your feedback. I really really appreciate it.

After her emails, I did not think she was interested in getting back together. In my heart of hearts, I knew this. (Plus she always, like me, replied quickly to emails anyway)

So, I emailed back 1 day later. I made a few points about work and life etc, which left the door open (if she wanted to email me again to ask some questions) and I also ended with some words about her week going well etc.

So, in short, there was enough material in my email to continue with the conversation if she wanted.

I received no further contact from her. Which is what I thought would happen to be honest.

That's ok, there was no obligation for her to continue to chat. And it is good that things are amicable and pleasant between us.

Still, if only:-) But I knew that i was hoping against hope.

The search goes on for that elusive single Christian woman who will be interested in me:-)

Thanks again for your comments.

SavvyD said...

Hi ME,

You get an almost...
That wasn't direct enough.

Quite frankly, I would need someone to be very direct with me. If someone were to invite me to coffee I might even have to ask if it was just friends or something more and that I need to know so that I know how to act because I'm very good at just friends. I'm not sure I know how to do more than that.

I've had a few guys call me and just talk but never ask me to get together. I talked with this one guy for 20 minutes or so and when it seemed like it wasn't leading to him asking me out, I said I had to go. He talked about his ex-girlfriend for part of the time and really I should have asked or something to find out what he really wanted. I just figured if he was talking about an ex that he would fly up to San Francisco to see, that he would/should know what to do to ask a woman out and he didn't ask me. He was attractive, too. Also he cancelled on me when he said he was going to come to an event I was attending.

me said...

Mmmmm, maybe I should just be completely direct and ask if she would like to catch up over lunch?

I still think if she had wanted to continue to chat, she would have emailed bacK? But then, maybe women think differently, I don't know :-)

What do you think?

P.S Not sure why the identity simply says "Me"!

SavvyD said...

Not necessarily. The only way to be truly clear is to say what's on your mind. Only then can you truly know. And you were together long enough that it might be appropriate to ask more directly.

Or you can keep guessing about what things mean.

I found myself guessing about something and it was uncomfortable. Then it got weird. Now we don't talk.

So basically you have nothing to lose.

You asked my advice, that's my advice.

If you don't want to follow it, that is fine.

EuropeanCatholic said...

Just thought I would mention. I asked her out, she said yes and we agreed to meet for lunch.

Then the day before she cancelled, saying she had been asked to do something in work that may run into lunch time.

I said that was ok, and let me know when it would suit again.

She has not contacted me to rearrange.

Ah, well at least I tried.

SavvyD said...

Well, that's one of the perils of trying to meet in the middle of the workday.

The only way to know if people are for real is to try to reschedule when you have them on the phone then and there. It's no skin off my back to tell someone, "I'm disappointed because I was looking forward to meeting up with you. Let's reschedule. What day works?"

When people say, "Let me know when you want to reschedule" it often doesn't mean jack. When people say, "we should have lunch sometime" it also doesn't mean jack. It only means something when they pull out their planners/calendars/phones and actually plan.

Congratulations, you just made it seem like it's not that important. It's not going to be important to anyone else if it doesn't seem important to you.

Sounds like it's time to move on and concentrate on improving your circumstances and learn to stop dwelling in the land of ambiguity.

SavvyD said...

But yes, you get credit for trying.

SavvyD said...

PS I knew it was you.

EuropeanCatholic said...

Thanks for your thoughts.

My impression was that she was using the work commitment as an excuse not to meet up. This impression has been only strengthened by the lack of any response from her to my email asking her to let me know when it would suit her to meet up.
That was a week ago now.

On the other hand, she said she wanted to postpone lunch and did not mention the word "cancel".

I am reluctant to ask her again if she would like to meet for lunch as I am somewhat weary of more rejection.

Perhaps I should ask her again though and mention a specific day and time again - kind of take the initiative and all that!
She did sound positive when she said yes to the first invite to lunch that was set up 2 weeks ago.

SavvyD said...

Well, if you have emailed her and she hasn't responded... I didn't know about that.

Listen, ultimately people can be flakey and don't always say what they mean. I was just giving you a tool that let you know when people are bluffing or just being nice. I've learned to hone in on things that don't mean anything and testing those things. People aren't serious until they're getting out their calendars. (But yes, beware of toooo serious. That's also scary.)

Learn the lesson and apply it to next time.

There HAS to be someone else.

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