How to Convince an Ex to Give Up
Q: I left my husband six months ago. It wasn't anyone's fault; we just married too young and grew into different people. The trouble is my ex can't let go. He's determined to "win me back" with texts, emails, flowers and uninvited visits to my new apartment. I don't feel threatened, just sad for him. How can I help him move on? -- Marta, 40
Dr. Susan: Are you sure you're not giving him any mixed messages? Saying you "just grew into different people" isn't enough for him. He figures if he's nice enough and courts you, he will eventually win you over. If you're totally sure that isn't going to happen, no matter what he does, you have to make it over-the-top abundantly clear that your mind is made up. Tell him you're no longer going to be responding to his communications, and don't let him in when he arrives uninvited.
It's going to take time for him to "move on." Sometimes beginning the legal process of divorce makes it more real to the party left behind. And if there is another guy you're seeing secretly, you really should file for divorce immediately. I only say this because this is often the catalyst that causes someone like you to leave someone like your husband for no identifiably good reason.
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Advice for Her
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Susan K. Perry, Ph.D.
Susan K. Perry, Ph.D., is a social psychologist, relationship expert, and bestselling and award-winning author. Her books include Loving in Flow: How the Happiest Couples Get and Stay That Way, and Kylie's Heel, a novel for adults.
Pamela G. Chollet, Ph.D.
Dr. Pamela Chollet has a Ph.D. in clinical psychology and Master degrees in educational psychology and fine arts. Her passion has been helping people face and get through those times when they feel trapped and unable to move forward.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist, stress management expert, and author. If you're feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, or struggling to make changes in your life, Anna can help.