Is it okay to contact my daughter's boyfriend after their break-up?

Lea - posted on 10/06/2012 ( 11 moms have responded )

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My daughter just broke up with her boyfriend, and sadly I am devastated...She is just about 18 and he is 19. They are just three weeks shy of what would have been 3 years since they started dating. I have read other post, so I know I am not alone, but I am so sad. I feel ridicuous, but I can't stop crying...This boy was like a member of our family. My daughter seems to be doing okay, but her boyfriend is not and I feel terrible for him...he is crushed :(

The kids first met in 7th grade and were literally best friends regardless of the fact they were a boy and girl. Then this boy started wanting to be more than friends, and he pursued my daughter for 1 1/2 years trying to get her to date him. She wouldn't at first because of their friendship and she didn't ever want that ruined. Well, then in 10th grade she gave in, and until now they had a fairytale romance, so much that everyone always talked about it.

After dating for 9 mos, my daughter's boyfriend's parents lost their home and sadly his family was forced to move, but the kids were determined to stay together...He was 1300 miles away in another state for 18 and they managed to stay together through texting, Skype, daily calls and occassional trips. My daughter was not allowed to visit his family alone, so the compromise was that I flew with her. Because of this, I became good friends with his family. We get along so well, and they love my daughter. He also flew to visit her from time to time and we allowed him to stay at our home but never in the same room. He promised her that he would be back their senior year, and sure enough he was. He stayed with family friends and came back to graduate with my daughter and all of his lifelong friends. During that time there were times when I took on the role of "mother". I helped to make sure he was always on track for school, and sometimes he came to me for help as a "grown-up" for things he normally would have asked his mom and dad. I packed his lunches everyday with my daughters, and he had dinner with out family many nights. Both of them graduated with "Highest Honors". They were at the top of their class, everyone loved them...they we such an awesome and very attractive couple! They had their life ahead of them, and they set very high goals for themselves...they had the next 5 years all planned out.

Most recently, they left to attend a university together. Before making final decisions to go to the same school, I sat them down (because he was living on his own, away from his parents) asking if they had really thought this through - that maybe it wasn't such a good idea. College involved a ton of new experiences, freedom, and growing up...it can be tough on relationships. They were positive this what what they wanted, they had researched the school, their majors, and I have to say that if they hadn't been dating the school truly was a great fit for both of them. Well they have been there a month, and my daughter broke up with him because he was having a really hard time with being very jealous and being overprotective because they were meeting lots of new people and it seems he felt like all of the guys were after my daughter and she couldn't see it. It turned into some big fights and she finally said he couldn't handle it....The problem is that I know she still loves him A LOT but she says she's done. She one the other had is experiencing all this new found freedom and coming from a somewhat sheltered life if someone naive to the world around her sometimes. She let it slip that she's waiting for him "to grow up". She is being really stubborn and really not talking to anyone about what's going on, thinking it's better if their just friends right now. Worst is that they have almost every class together...they planned this so they could share the cost of their books to save money. She has made it very clear that this is not about wanting another relationship.

So, my problem is this. I love this kid nearly as much as one of my own. We have a slightly different relationship than most because I kind of did play mom to him for the last year. I helped him with food, He is soooo sad, and sent me a 6 page text the other day. Rather than text back I called him to check on him. I was not about to tell him "too bad, so sad" because I care about him too much and like I said he practically lived with us for the last year, due to the fact he returned to graduate without his parents here. I feed him, sometimes clothed him and helped him with his college applications...

Well, my daughter was fuming when she found out he contacted me and I called him saying "You're not his mom" to me, and "You're not her kid" to him. I told him I was so sorry his heart was broken and that I wished I could tell him what to do, but I couldn't. I told him he should talk to his dad, etc. He hadn't told his parents (neither, they are divorced..so he has mom & step-dad or dad & step-mom). We had a big discussion by Skype about the whole thing including that we had a slightly different situation than most because we helped to take care of him when he was here and she couldn't honest expect me to just ignore him, that was not fair. Now, I haven't heard from him, but because I can see hims post of FB, I can see what he's feeling. It's tearing my heart out because I know he's reaching out. It's so sad, and I'm worried about him at college all by himself.

They have shared so many wonderful memories and had such and amazing friendship for so many years, it so hard to imagine them not being together. Everything everyone said they couldn't make it through they did...and now they fail??? Through it all, I have also made some good friends with his dad & step-mom, and my daughter has a really good relationship with them as well. I know my daughter still sees him in her future, but she's being really stubborn saying he needs to grow up. It would take forever to write all the details, but she needs to grow up too... and she is only 17. I also know he's giving up :( ...and he is going to leave the school if things don't work out. She doesn't get it, that when he's gone, he's gone. But she doesn't want to talk about anything.

I can't get the picture out of my head, of their smiling faces and watching them grow up together..it's killing me. They had really planned an entire future together, albeit I know they're young, but they even had children's name picked out and talked about where they were going to live in 5 years.

Don't get me wrong, my daughter's happiness my first priority, but I want to make sure that the ex-BF is okay too. Help, don't know what to do! I've been praying a lot, and I feel like they're supposed to be together.....I am just soooo sad! I am talking with my daughter, but is it okay to check on him, too? Not to talk about them, but to make sure he's alright? I keep picturing him locked in his room crying...he was crying when I talked to him last. I wish I could fix this...fix them! :( I am so sad...

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Sandra - posted on 06/28/2013

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Jen D. I totally agree with you on this.

Although I can understand how the Mom may feel as though the ex was another family member...truth is. He was not. They were not married. No kids. This is not a divorce.

Coming from the other side of it...my 17 year old Daughters BF broke up with HER. She was heartbroken. Yes, I cried. However, my tears were for her. The ex boyfriends Mother AND Sister contacted my Daughter and My Daughter said it was "awkward" for her. I was personally a little miffed by them calling her. I felt they were "pushing." The problem was it made things worse for my Daughter...as this was not just a 1time text to make sure my Daughter was "ok." By the two of them continuing to press and the sister even inviting my daughter to go shopping it just made things worse and made the work and road to healing a long/drawn out process.

The Mother & Sister wanted my Daughter "in their family." The BF did not.

I say stay out of it! As hard as it is...the child that was the one with the broken heart needs to heal. Remember too...that child HAS a family and YOU aren't it. Tend to your own child. That way no one can ever accuse you of putting yourself in the middle.

Just an opinion...but I DO hope you will heed my advice on this! Good luck

Jen - posted on 10/13/2012

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I kind of disagree with a lot of the responses. Your daughter's ex-boyfriend sounds like a very nice young man, and I completely understand why you are worried about him and want to be there for him. But, I don't think you should. I think you should tell him that you care about him and want the best for him, but until things settle down between he and your daughter, you have to be there to support her and you really can't do both. He has parents, maybe it's time for them to step up and be there for him this time.



If your daughter and this boy have been together for this long, with such a great relationship, and then your daughter broke up with him within a month of being away from home, there can only be a few things (imo) going on. One is that this boy is out-of-control jealous and possessive of your daughter having her own life away from home. Another is that their relationship was not as good as you thought it was all along. The third is that your daughter really wants to explore her freedom and be independent, whether that means dating other boys or not, and she feels she can't do that while she's attached to him. In any of these situations, your daughter is not wrong to break up with him. They are young - if she wants to be on her own she has every right. If this boy is going to pursue her, then your supporting him will seem to your daughter that you are pushing her to get back together with him. And you shouldn't do that. If it's meant to be, they'll get back together. But frankly, my guess is they won't.



This is coming from a woman who married her high school sweetheart, so I understand that it can happen. But my boyfriend and I agreed we would be allowed to date others when I left for college, at my parents' insistence. He went on a couple of dates, I didn't date at all. After a year or so we made our relationship exclusive again, and we got married 3 weeks after my graduation. I just think that if your daughter really loved this boy and saw their relationship being permanent, they wouldn't be where they are right now. They're just kids - don't make your daughter settle for a relationship that's not right for her as she gets older.

Lea - posted on 11/02/2013

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Loretta - no, they never got back together :( It was my daughter's decision. I would be a liar to say that I didn't wish they were still together. To this day, I miss his family and him very much. What's worse is that I can't stand the new guy. I will say this...lesson learned - I let myself get much too close in this relationship, hence the reason my heart is still broken for a relationship that wasn't mine. My daughter and I have not been the same ever since, and I have a huge hole in my heart because of it.

What's worse is that I can't stand the new guy in her life....he is not anything that she ever shared as being her dream guy. I made it clear early on that I don't like him and that I don't trust him. Another mistake on my part....now I don't ask anything about him, and she doesn't share. It leaves little to talk about except school and small talk. It's horrible because she is away at college and I have no idea what's going on with this guy. I pray that it is not God's will for this new guy to be with her...he is not a good fit for our family and they are NOTHING alike. I don't ever see our families hanging out, NEVER EVER. I don't get it. I've been told by others not to panic, that it's a rebound thing, but it's been 6 months!

She had a wonderful guy, but it's not for me to choose. If they had met later in life I know without a doubt they would be together. He was they guy she always said she dreamed of, but I think immaturity on both their parts did not allow her to see it. He still is that guy! It has been very hard to stay out of this new relationship because it scares the crud out of me! It seems like my daughter is out to prove to everyone that this guy is great because so many of us told her that he's not because she doesn't want to admit to herself she was infatuated by his "player" ways. I have been warned and also read that the more I say or push away from this guy, the more likely it will be that she will stay just to prove a point. I am sooo sad and I miss my daughter, my real daughter, more than words can say. I have not spoken to her ex, but his step mom recently sent me a message just to say "hi" and tell me she misses me. It made me cry.

My daughter's ex dated another girl for about three months, but now he's single again and I know why. It's been a year, but he's still hurting. :( My daughter changed her phone number, so he can't reach her by phone, and she didn't even send him a "Happy Birthday" for his birthday...I don't know why I thought she might, but they were best friends long before they were in a relationship. I wanted to contact him for that, but I didn't for fear of retaliation from my daughter if she found out. It's been a year, but I am not giving up that some day they will talk again. I don't know why I feel so strongly about this kid for her, but I do... once he matures he will be a very good catch for some lucky young lady. I got in way to deep, and to this day honestly feel almost like I lost one of my own....yes we were that close. Not in a weird way, but more like family. I thought there was something wrong with me for feeling this way, but I now know that I am not alone.

As parents, we all have dreams for our children, and have a picture of what we hope there life will be like in there future. We want only good things for them. Although they were young, this kids and his family fit the mold.

Be careful mom, my involvement with my daughter's relationship hurt my relationship with her a lot :( We still love each other very much, but there is still A LOT of hurt in both our hearts, even though we don't talk about it. We went from inseparable, sharing everything, to almost strangers because she went through so much anger thinking I had taken the boy's side. This was not the case, but I cared and still do care about whether or not he was doing okay. Although she made the decision is was very hurtful for her too. Your daughter's boyfriend's family will take care of him. I still want to fix the old relationship, but I NEVER bring it up anymore....if it's meant to happen, it will. I have faith that it will, it's just a feeling, but the waiting is killing me. Contacting the boy is not worth losing your relationship with your daughter like I almost did. :( Trust me on this, the hole in my heart is HUGE a year later.

Sharon - posted on 02/10/2013

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I am going through the same thing and I didn't know if it was normal. My 22 year old Daughter recently informed me that she and her boyfriend broke up. They've been together for years. I grew to care for him. I don't know why they broke up. I've been crying all morning about this...it feels like I lost somebody in my family or something. I sent him a text message telling him that I'm sorry about what happened and that I still care very much about him and hope he is OK. He wrote back saying "thank you." Glad I'm not crazy knowing others go through this type of thing also.

Jennifer - posted on 10/09/2012

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Geez Lea you have me all upset for this boy :(

I personally don't see the harm in keeping contact with the ex BF (though this is a situation i have't had to deal with yet). I know your daughter didnt like that, and maybe wait a week or so to talk to actually talk with him. But he is hurting, and if he's close with you, then maybe your one of a few people who can really help him in his time of need. Its not like he did anything to hurt your daughter in any way, theres no "bad guy" here, so theres no reason to turn away from somebody asking for help. This sounds like kind of a tough situation and either way you go, i dont think you'll be making a "wrong choice."

I hope everything works out for all of you, and i'm pulling for this kid!

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Sandra - posted on 12/09/2013

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Lea,
I truly feel for you! Hopefully your Daughter is just "testing the waters" for now with the other guy.
It sounds like you have a healthy, positive attitude towards everything now. I am happy for you. You are right. It your Daughter and her ex get back together they will. If not...then it was for the best anyway.
My Daughters ex has a new girlfriend now. My Daughter is over him....but his sister still texts my Daughter on occasion. My Daughter doesn't respond. She said because: "If I were still dating him and found his family/sister was texting his ex-girlfriend it would hurt my feelings..."
I am glad my girl has enough sensitivity and respect for her ex and his relationship with his new girlfriend. (even if his own sister does not! sheesh!)
Anyway, Lea thanks for updating us. Let us know if anything happens!
Take care :o)
Sandra

Loretta - posted on 10/29/2013

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Did they ever get back together Lea? I hope things are better! I really want to contact daughter's ex boyfriend as well. When I sent him a message on Facebook he ignored them until finally told me a relationship is meant for two not two and a mother! I blocked him on Facebook and have to constantly remind myself it was for the best.

L R - posted on 10/13/2012

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Lea,

My son fell for a girl about the same ages as your daughter. I have a question... is your daughter an only child? I get the feeling she is and you brought her boyfriend into the "family" as I would. I don't see anything wrong with you calling to see how he is doing but you do need to move on and let your daughter find what she is looking for. It may be that she wants this boy or it may be another. The best thing you can do is let her know that you are supportive of her and that you will be there for her. I have friends that feel the same way when their child breaks ups.... so you are not alone! It doesn't mean you cannot stay friends with his parents but regarding the relationship.... if it's meant to be, it will be.

Lea - posted on 10/09/2012

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Thank you for your responses...I have talked with my daughter quite a bit and understand her frame of mind a lot better now. She is doing a lot of soul searching about a lot of things, and that's okay. She knows that she is lucky to have someone that cares so much about her, but she needs some confirmation that she is on the right path and really needs some space to figure it all out. She is also hurting because the boy is hurting, but it sounds like they have managed to do a lot of talking and trying to stay friends through the awkwardness. I dont know what the future holds for them, but I can see that no matter what they will both be okay...there will always be a space in each other's heart for the time they have shared regardless of what happens. I have not spoken with him until today, but only to respond to a question he texted about sending a certain type of flowers to her, and I added a sentence saying "I've been praying for you". He was also careful not to open up a full conversation and just sent a smiley face back. I guess for now he is not giving up...privately I hope he never does. But I will respect her decisions, whatever they end up being. It made me feel better that he wasn't afraid to text me today to ask for help without crossing any lines that would upset my daughter. Oh Lord, well please pray for all of us...they were truly a beautiful couple, albeit it very young too. I hope that she will decide to stay with him, but who knows. Thanks again for your advice...

Starr - posted on 10/09/2012

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I would say respect your daughters wishes, she needs to know she comes first. Maybe something happened between the two of them that she's not saying?



If you are really concerned I would maybe contact his mother or something. My daughter is going thru a breakup and both kids are really torn up about it, the mother and I have been texting each other as we are both concerned over each others kids. She doesn't mind me talking to his mother either but gets peeved if he contacts me.

Annie - posted on 10/07/2012

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Respect your daughter's wishes. Really. She needs to know that you are on her side. Maybe if you show her that, she will eventually feel okay about you "being there" for her ex boyfriend.

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