We all have that ex, the one that never leaves us alone even though the relationship ended years ago. And if you don't have that ex, consider yourself to be very lucky because some of us could only dream of being freed from that burden.
As for me, my ex is persistent, to say the least. We dated in high school, and as I pointed out in a previous article, the relationship was not exactly sunshine and rainbows. And now, even though we've been over for a little over four years now, it seems like I'm just way too great to forget because he doesn't seem to get the message.
But I do—get the message, that is. In fact, I get tons of them, from him.
You'd think after a while of trying to communicate with me, he would grow tired of making the attempt. Maybe he'd realize it's not worth it and there are better things to do with his life (like literally anything else) than continue to bother me. Sadly, though, this is not the case.
Despite the rough ending to a rocky relationship, I tried to be on good terms afterward. I tried to maintain somewhat of a friendship, and even when that failed, I tried to remain as cordial as possible. This means I never blocked him and didn't plan on ever having to block him because I thought we were both moving on with our lives and not dwelling on what once was.
Clearly, I was so, so wrong.
It probably would have been fine if certain things hadn't gone the way they did while I tried to be OK with him (let me redirect you to another previous article of mine which details exactly what I'm referencing) but that wasn't the case here. In this situation, I wanted nothing to do with him anymore and I thought it was made clear by my avoidance of all communication.
Apparently, though, the metaphorical message was never received because his attempts kept coming in, and eventually, there was nothing else I could do but block him entirely from having any contact with me.
So why, you may ask, does it matter to me that he is now engaged?
The truth is, it doesn't. Not in the way you might think, anyway.
What matters to me about this whole thing is not the fact that he's finally moving on with his life and leaving me in the past, the same way I left him. It's the fact that, even though he's making this commitment to someone else who probably expects to be with him forever, it hasn't seemed to convince him enough to leave me alone.
And therein lies my problem.
Some may call me "petty," and some might even say that I'm making way too big of a deal out of this than it needs to be. But all I'm saying is: If you're marrying someone else, you really need to leave your ex(s) alone. Period.
This may be common sense to a lot of people, because it really is, yet for some reason, here I am reiterating it for those who are like my ex and don't seem to fully grasp this concept.
Now, what is one to do when they're on the receiving end of this unnecessary attention? Simple: Don't respond. Ever.
Sending back any kind of message, whether it be an angry one explicitly stating how you feel with a few curse words thrown in, or a calm one where you kindly ask them to leave you alone, it's not worth it. They're not going to listen, because if they were willing to, they would have already (assuming this has happened multiple times, of course.)
And I know, it's so satisfying to be able to tell them off after all that they've put you through (assuming the relationship ended because of something they did) but really, it's not going to hold up in the end. Any kind of response to their persistence only shows them they still have some form of pull with you, and that's not what you want to do.
You don't want to give them the satisfaction of knowing that they've gotten to you in any way, remember that.
If you're like me, you've moved on. You've learned to live your life on your terms after being on someone else's for who knows how long, and you're finally able to do the things you want to do without feeling ashamed of them by this ex that once was your significant other.
If you're like me, you're finding yourself, and you're learning every single day what it means to be you again after losing that person in a relationship that suffocated you to no end. You've taken steps to be a new, improved version of who you once were before the relationship, and even though you know there's a lot left to be done still, you're ready to do it all.
If you're like me, you don't want to go back to that place. The place where you felt lost, alone, trapped, and like nothing could ever change for you. And the only way to stay away from there is to stay away from the person who put you there, in every conceivable way.
I know it's hard. I know there are times where all you want to do is ask certain questions that you never got answers to. I know there are days where you have had enough and want to lay it all out, not caring about anything anymore. And I know that, regardless of what I'm saying, it's still going to be a decision you have to make for yourself in the end.
But if there's one thing I know most of all, it's that they're not your problem anymore. You are free. You don't have to answer to them, literally or metaphorically.
You are your own boss now, be proud of that.
It doesn't matter how the relationship ended, what matters is that it's over now and you're the only person you have to listen to.
So don't give them what they're looking for. Don't let them win, even if it doesn't seem like a win to you because of what you're saying to them. As long as you're responding, it is their win and your loss.
Besides, you should be happy that they're someone else's responsibility now. The person they're engaged to? They're the ones that should be in charge of the reprimanding, not you. You don't owe anything to this person anymore.
If you're like me, your ex continues to message you in any way they can in order to weasel their way back into your life, and regain the control they once had. Even though they're apparently getting married to someone else and should be focusing on, I don't know, making a marriage work?
And if you're like me, you won't reply to anything they send you, because you know you're better than that, than them, and you don't need to prove yourself to anyone.
All you need to do is use that little "block" button that appears pretty much everywhere and pretend you never got the messages.
Because even if you did, it's not your problem. Let their fiancé handle it—it's what they're signing up for.