I Couldn’t Make My Ex Happy So He Left

Question: Yangki, I’ve read all of your site and love your advice. I was with my ex for 2.5 years. It was a troubled relationship mainly because we didn’t see eye to eye on many things. At times we didn’t talk for days but we managed to work things out. His complaint was that he wasn’t happy. I can honestly said I did everything a girlfriend should do and gave him everything but it wasn’t enough. About 3 weeks ago, he broke up with me. A week after we broke up I met with him to talk about what happened but he says NOTHING I do will make him want to come back.

I’m very hurt but I believe in my heart that we are meant to be together. I just don’t know what else to do to make him happy.

Yangki’s Answer: I believe you when you say, you did “everything” to make it work but it still didn’t work. In my experience with these kind of situations there are two possible things happening here:

1. You may have ideas and beliefs about what a relationship should be like and implemented those ideas and beliefs thinking that’s what will make your ex happy and the relationship work. Problem with this is that the things you are doing may not be what your ex wants or what makes him happy. They are things that would make YOU happy.

He walked away and you are hurt because you feel that you did “everything” right or gave him/her “everything”, and it still wasn’t enough. He on the other hand may feel that he didn’t get what he wanted in the relationship and there is no point in trying again because you are just going to do more of the same.

2. It is also possible that your ex’s unhappiness has nothing to do with you. Most people who are generally unhappy with themselves, their lives or both, blame their unhappiness on the relationship, only to walk away and find they are still unhappy.

Take a good look at your relationship and see where his unhappiness is coming from. If it’s from how you handled the relationship, figure out what it is that he wanted in the relationship but wasn’t getting and try to offer that to him. When I say “offer”, I’m not saying verbally tell him your offer. I’m talking about “showing” him by your actions that things can be better because you now understand what it is that makes him happy. Not what would make YOU happy, but what makes HIM happy.

If the unhappiness is from things that are his own — himself, his life or both — I’m afraid there is nothing you can do to make him happy. It’s just one of those things… you can’t make someone who is unhappy with himself or his life happy. They have to find happiness on their own.

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