SINGAPORE: A day before Valentine’s, a woman poured her heart out on social media, saying she was devastated to learn that her ex-boyfriend of five years had “changed for the better” for his new partner.

“I hear that he has been doing everything he never did for me or for himself when we were together. Many of those things are what i openly and specifically asked him to do but he always refused,” the woman wrote on Reddit on Tuesday (Feb 13).

Despite breaking up for two years, she still feels terrible because she can’t understand why he changed for another girl.

The woman also shared that she initiated the break-up because her ex-boyfriend had “high expectations” of her, but he never changed or made sacrifices for their relationship.

“We both cried a lot the last few months trying to save our relationship. i really dont understand the reason because I know he loved me a lot.

Why do guys change for the better after a breakup? I hear similar stories from people around me as well. So why are guys doing this?” the woman asked.

“Because it may take a traumatic event to wake up”

Numerous individuals replied to her post with theories/explanations on why her ex-boyfriend might have changed for his new partner.

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One said, “Because it may take a traumatic event to wake up. If I’m not good enough now, then I’m not going to be good enough for anyone else.

I want to be the best version of myself so that I can be with someone wonderful in the future. Only way to do that is grow and reflect on the mistakes of the past.”

While another individual commented, “I highly doubt it has anything to do with you. Maybe he wanted to change when he was with you, but lacked the energy and motivation. The reason doesn’t have to be that he didn’t love you.”

Others speculated that it could have been because her ex-boyfriend realized that “what he was doing with her” was not working, and to avoid the pain of losing another relationship, he was willing to change for the next person and be more mature.

One person added, “Just had to do with maturity and growing up. Everyone improves the older they get and everyone learns more each day.”

Meanwhile, a few others asked her why she hadn’t moved on since they’d broken up for two years.

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One person said, “ Having “whys” is not doing you any good, or comparing yourself to his new partner. Focus on what you have changed in the last two years and focus on moving forward.”

How to let go of your ex-partner and move forward

Breaking up with someone you’ve been with for a long time is never a walk in the park.

Instead of healing ourselves, we often resort to re-living the happy memories inside our mind and tend to think afterwards, “What if he/she comes back? What if he/she asks for forgiveness? What if he/she changes for me?”

Although these things happen for some couples, it doesn’t mean you should ignore your pain and hold on to the hope that you two will eventually get back together. Sometimes, you have to accept that your ex-partner was simply not meant for you.

According to experts, you must go through the five stages of a breakup before starting over.

Stage 1: Denial and Shock. This is the stage where it may be difficult for you to come to terms with the end of the relationship. Coming off a fresh breakup, you still hold out hope for reconciliation.

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Stage 2: Anger and Resentment. When reality has finally hit you at this point in time, you could become enraged at your ex-partner, yourself, or the events leading up to the split.

Stage 3: Bargaining. The bargaining stage is when you may attempt to negotiate with your ex-partner in an attempt to maintain the relationship.

Stage 4: Sadness and Grief. During this period, you may feel a sense of loss, emptiness, and longing for your failed relationship.

Stage 5: Acceptance and moving on are the last phases of a breakup. Engaging in self-love practices and reaching out to your family and close friends can greatly help you at this point.

Also, many people have claimed that getting “closure” is essential to ultimately letting go of your ex-partner. 

However, closure doesn’t always mean talking to them or giving/receiving an explanation. Sometimes, closure means forgiving them for whatever they did to you and forgiving yourself for all the mistakes you made.

Like Victoria Hanley once said,  “Remember, when you forgive, you heal. And when you let go, you grow.”