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‘I dumped then ignored a lovely women – now I feel guilty about how I acted’

Dear Coleen
About 10 years ago, I was in a relationship with a really lovely woman, but messed it all up because I was immature. I’ve often thought about how I should have treated her better and I regret that things didn’t end well since I was uncaring.

I never did anything really awful, but I was young and would never commit – I suppose I thought the grass was greener and my whole ­attitude was “easy come, easy go”. I didn’t think about how she felt and I know now that she really loved me.

I ended it with her by sending an email and then didn’t reply to any of her calls or messages, which looking back, must have been awful for her, as we’d been together for over two years by that point.

I ended up getting married quite soon after the break-up, although I’m now divorced and single.

I know my ex is living quite close by and someone told me she was single too.

I’d love to get in touch with her to make amends and try to make up for my shoddy behaviour, but have no idea how she’ll react or if it’s a good idea.

Can you help?

Coleen says
Before you speak to her, I think it would be good to think about why you’re contacting her or, more specifically, what you’re hoping to get out of it.

Is it simply to ease a guilty conscience? Are you feeling lonely in lockdown ­post-divorce, or are you hoping to start something up with her again?

I imagine you’re not high on her list of favourite people after the way you ended things and I’m sure she was heartbroken and took time to get over the relationship.

If you have an email address for her or she’s on social media, why not message her in the first instance, saying you know she’s living close by and you’ve been thinking a lot about the way you ended things and want to apologise for how you behaved.

You might get a response, you might not. But it may help to know she’s got the message and knows you’re sorry.

Just don’t get your hopes up that she will want to get back into a relationship with you. I know you regret how you behaved when you were with her and wish you’d done things differently, but I also think that if you really loved her and the relationship was right, you would have stayed together.

It obviously wasn’t right for you at the time, so the chances are it wouldn’t be right now either.

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