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Monday, July 28, 2014

Do You Keep the Presents After a Breakup?

Dear Bro Jo,

I hope this is the right way to contact you for the blog and getting a reply.

Okay, long story short the guy in this I liked 6 years ago and when he got back from his mission 10 months ago we got together after a week and within the second month we were both completely in love and he kept saying he knew we'd be together forever.

After 10 months he now says it’s not the right time, won't say exactly why, but we have both spoke and agreed to keep everything we have from each other, presents, photos etc. in boxes and we're still going to meet up every now and then.

I’ll see him every Sunday at Church and we both have the same friends which is why we are doing this, but we've said we're not going to draw a line in the sand yet because who knows what may happen when we've both finished college.

Do you think it’s the best idea to stay friends?

And keep presents and photos?

And to not draw a line in the sand just yet?


- Name Withheld

Dear NW, 

Actually, the best way to reach me for "Dear Bro Jo" stuff is to send emails to

And, no, I don't agree that what you're doing is the best idea.

After 10 months you deserve more of a concrete explanation than "now is not the right time".

You should be told why, and the fact that he's not coming clean is a huge red flag.

Whether he tells you or not, I think you both need to realize that it's over.

Presents belong to the receiver to keep, trash, sell, pass on, set on fire, or do with whatever they wish. They're presents, after all.

But, frankly, he has drawn a line in the sand; it's just that neither of you is willing to admit it. He ended the relationship and he doesn't trust or respect you enough to give you a reason why.

That's a deal breaker right there.

You can, and should, still be polite and cordial, especially among mutual friends, but you deserve much better than to be put into cold storage until he clues in that he never should have broken up with you in the first place.

That is, assuming he ever does.

The bottom line?

The guy isn't ready for marriage.

He wants to date (and kiss) other people.

He's realized on some level that he should probably marry you, if you'd take him that is, and yet he's not ready to grow up.

He has doubts and fears, both of which are very normal, but he wants some time to play around and see if he can find someone better than you.

That's not the kind of guy you should be clinging to.

Move on.

Keep the photos and other stuff if you want, but don't pretend that you two are still together or might get back together some day.

You can't count on that.

If he does come to his senses, make him beg.

(When I say stuff like that last sentence I usually get grief from the whinny guys who think I'm one-sided and too hard on them . . . which I think is proof I'm right.)

- Bro Jo

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