Hi Dr Love,am a 19 yo female, and I was just dumped by my boyfriend.Although our relationship was off/on for three years, we love(d) each other tremendously.I caused him lots of pain and humiliation during our time together including cheating on him, lying, and just ignoring him sometimes. He retaliated often and that ‘s when I felt even more attracted to him and loved him more. No matter what the problem was, we were able to work through it.took me to our favorite place and broke up with me. It all seemed premeditated and it really hurt because I didn’t see it coming and definitely didn’t want it to end. He said that he didn’t want to talk to me ever again or even hear my name, but I asked him if we could be friends at least, and he didn’t answer me.I know we can’t get back together, (even though I really want to) but how do I go on just being his friend (if he’ll accept) after such a long relationship?
You are asking me for ideas on how you can hurt less and keep the friendship. One of your goals, to be his friend, isn’t within your control. He has a say in that one.However, if you focus on the other goal, how can you hurt less, and you do the kind of work you need to do in order to heal yourself, you will stand a better chance of winning his friendship.What is the type of work that you need to do? You need to understand why you mistreated him so badly. Find out how your behavior related to your childhood. Were you replaying a relationship that you experienced as a kid? Were you copying behavior that you saw your parents engage in? Were you hurting him in order to keep him at a distance, so that you wouldn’t risk being hurt?When you understand the whys of your actions, and heal the causes, then you can go back to your ex. and open your heart to him. When he sees your growth and understanding, and you ask for his forgiveness, you have a much better chance of winning his friendship.The work that I outline is vital. If you don’t do this work, you are going to experience a string of failed relationships. I always tell people that we use our relationships in order to heal the wounds of childhood. We restage the painful experiences of childhood by choosing partners who reminds us of the parents who let us down.If you can become conscious of the wounds that you need to heal, and you work to heal them in therapy, then you won’t need to set up these unhealthy scenarios in future relationships. This is how to heal your hurt once and for all. I hope you get your friend back.