#712: “You’re not still mad at me, are you?”

The question feels so manipulative and self-serving because 1) he knows you have good reason to be angry and 2) he’s asking for you to act like everything’s okay, without him first doing the work of regaining your trust.

If he wanted to be friends, he should have handled the breakup differently. He handled the breakup like someone who doesn’t want to hear from you anymore. If he wants to feel better about what he did, then he needs to give that to himself, not take it from you.

And if he wants to be able to run into you around town and have you be nice and friendly to him, then a) he needs to own up to having behaved like a shit-ball, and b) you still might not want to be friendly with him.

That said, I’m also interested in this part here:
” If I say, “why, yes, you’re a big shit-ball,” it feels like I’m giving up power somehow, and it’s easy to dismiss me as bitter, as someone who’s still hung up on him.”

Here’s the thing: do you care about what he thinks of you? Do you want to maintain power over him?

If you’re worried about what he’ll say to your friends, that’s one thing, but if it really bothers you that he might think you’re bitter, perhaps ask yourself why that is.

Captain Awkward

Dear Captain Awkward,

After two months of just-can’t-get-enough-of-you, he went cold overnight. Just like a switch was thrown. No responses, no communication, nada. Okay, it’s happened before with other guys, I can deal.

What has also happened before which I CAN’T deal with is running into him again and getting that question. You know the one. “You’re not mad at me, are you?” [cue sheepish grin]

I simply cannot come up with a satisfying answer to this question. If I say, “why, yes, you’re a big shit-ball,” it feels like I’m giving up power somehow, and it’s easy to dismiss me as bitter, as someone who’s still hung up on him. If I say no, then he walks away feeling absolved. Either way, he feels good / righteous.

It’s surprising how often they turn up again with this question. I hate getting cornered this way, and I _will_ run into…

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About alysonmiers

Alyson the Incorrigible of House Miers; High Priestess of Sparkly Fractal Flames; Summoner of Creative Insults; Wrangler of Adverbs, Semicolons and Conditional Clauses; Bane of Euphemisms; Mixer of Genres; and Mother of Witches.