On this weeks featured episode of Ask The Men, Jamal asks:
“Hi there. So to start off my story I had a relationship with this girl for a month but [prior to that] we were talking for about 3 months. We are both coworkers and it’s been a rocky relationship from the get go because of her anger and my [in]ability to grow up and be a man.
She broke up with me a few weeks ago because we didn’t click, the conversation never flowed, and only liked me because I was a nice guy. I tried to get her to reconsider, but to no success and it almost cost us our jobs. I even went as far as going to her place to try and get back with her. Even though it didn’t work, I was given some information to improve myself in the hopes of getting her back.
So my question is how can I get my girl back after she called off the relationship?…Any advice would do.”
Thank you for being an OM reader and taking the time to write in with your dilemma. I’ve kept you waiting long enough, so lets get to it.
It is without question that a typical relationship consists of more than just ginger snaps, sunshine, good vibes and fun times. There are always rainy days bundled into every relationship like inexplicable fees cleverly bundled into your monthly cell phone bill; and to expect otherwise is not only foolish, but a precursor for constant disappointment. Damn you Sprint! But unlike those fake fees, the beautiful thing about rain is that although unpleasant to be in, it is only temporary. It will always pass, leaving in its wake a refreshed and fertile environment prepped for new life and growth. Therein lies the hallmark of a healthy relationship – a delicate balance of great energy, not so great times, replenishment, and constant growth. And then there are relationships…like yours.
My question to you is a direct and simple one – Why do you want her back? Think about it. Why do you still harbor a desire to pursue this
gawd awful sounding relationship? I want you to think about that. I mean really think about that. Pontificate hard my brotha, because to ask the question is to answer it. I want to know why, and so should you.
Now unless my comprehension skills are on the fritz, your extremely short-lived relationship sounded more like a never ending hurricane of baby tears, God’s wrath and Meek Mill L’s. Where are the toasty, buttery, endearing descriptions of your relationship that helps me not only see the beauty in it, but the glory that is this young woman who has left you pining for more? The way I see it, if not even a single warm, fuzzy, heartfelt sentiment was present on the forefront of your consciousness to be mentioned when describing your own relationship, then is it a relationship worth redeeming or pursuing? Think about that.
Additionally, I couldn’t help but detect a slight self-depreciating tone in your letter which offers a glimpse into the tragedy that this relationship appears to be, and also leaves me with the impression that your ex may actually have some legitimate criticisms. Conversely, the criticisms you have laid out about her (anger issues, etc) are quite as damning also, and indicate serious compatibility issues which would explain the chaos and toxicity you both brought to the relationship. This certainly doesn’t mean all is lost, but it does raise questions about the criticisms/information you received to improve yourself for the purposes of regaining her affections. Let me explain.
Since none of us are perfect beings, we all should be receptive to constructive criticisms as part of our respective and ongoing efforts to become better versions of ourselves (ideally speaking of course). And I commend you for being open to what your ex had to say. I only hope she is just as receptive to any criticisms and concerns you had as well. That said, we need to be careful when digesting criticism, particularly when its coming from those who stand to gain the most from the changes they are pushing us towards. For instance, are the criticisms and advice your ex provided sincere and coming from a good place with the intent to benefit your growth as a human being so that you will be a better man with or without her? Or are the criticisms meant to shame and coerce you into succumbing to her whims and fancies, of which she will be the sole beneficiary of within the relationship? If it is the former, take them under advisement and make adjustments where needed. If its latter, run like hell. In either case, make sure you are clear which you are dealing with before you take the corresponding action.
Lastly, often difficult to recognize are the times we act out of desperation while under duress. In stressful times like these, we can become too eager to please and so blinded by our pursuits that we fail to (A) recognize the warning signs of our situation, and (B) see the harm we are doing to ourselves in the process. This oftentimes leads us to participate in self-destructive behaviors. A prime example was your willingness to jeopardize your very livelihood and income over a woman/relationship which is not only an eyebrow raising action, but behavior that I cannot cosign on any level.
Now, I’m fully aware that having an earnest desire to prove one’s love can bring out some interesting sides in us all, and in those moments our well intentioned displays of love may seem like fantastic ideas. However, there is a very fine line between passion and crazy. When you are all too willing to sacrifice your very source of income, jeopardize your freedom, boil the family pet alive, or throw your life away in a brash, overzealous attempt of persuasion, you have officially crossed that line and entered self-destruct mode. Although your circumstances never escalated to the ugliest of those extremes, the both of you did manage to suffer enough of a lapse in judgment that almost took you out of your work offices and into the office of unemployment.
By now I think you’ve gotten the point.
I say be grateful you are out of that relationship. Utilize the separation as an opportunity to take personal inventory and also to determine if there is any validity to your ex’s concerns. Identify where you need to grow and nurture those areas, but do not – I repeat – do not do it for her or to rekindle your relationship. Do it for
the vine yourself! Eventually – and hopefully – you will find a woman that doesn’t require anger management classes to love you.
However, should your stubborn heart lead you back to your ex, there will be no need to ram down her throat that you are a changed man. If she truly appreciates and values what you bring to the table, she recognize it immediately and act accordingly. If she is incapable of doing so, get out.
Well Jamal, thats it. Yes I know this may not have been exactly what you were looking for in terms of advice to salvage your relationship. You’ll have to forgive me for that. If it is any consolation, I’d like to leave you with something comparable – “The Top 7 Signs To Know When You’re in A F*cked up Relationship”:
- Rocky relationship from the start
- She has anger issues
- You have an inability to be a man
- Ya’ll don’t click
- Conversations never flow
- She only likes you because you’re a nice guy
- All the above happening within the first 3 months of dating