Whether you should write a letter or not depends on various elements.
It depends on how you chose to cope with the breakup and on your post-breakup connection.
Take a step back and ask yourself: Was your breakup casual or a messy mess?
Have you tried to distance yourself completely from your ex or have you kept a subtle contact?
All these various factors will guide you on how to write and whether you should send the letter to your ex.
This is a bumpy road that needs consistency and placidity.
Let’s be clear. Writing a letter to your ex doesn’t mean that you have to send it to your ex by all means.
It could be a form to just help you express your thoughts and feelings.
Thus, you can let all those negative thoughts and feelings that have been tormenting you.
Here are different situations when you should write a letter to your ex:
1. You should write a letter if you aim to get closure
You should write a letter to your ex when you need that certain answer so you can stay in motion.
A closure can be even when the answer is no, sometimes they won’t provide you with a certain reason.
Sometimes, even when you get a certain reason why they moved on quickly or gave up won’t help.
It will just decrease the overthinking process and blame yourself.
At least you won’t continue to romanticize your ex and keep hoping to get back.
It will hurt and it will not be easy to accept but you will keep getting better.
Yet, it will help you heal and reflect differently.
2. You shouldn’t write it if you are expecting something in return
Writing a letter to your ex isn’t a good idea if you are having certain expectations.
That’s because, at the moment that you decide to write it, your ex might not be on the same page as you.
The post-breakup period might be different for you and for your ex.
They might not have the same feelings for you or are already in another relationship.
If your ex is a part of another relationship, even a rebound, you should avoid sending them the letter.
It will cause more harm than good to you and your ex.
Both of you will be confused, give each other mixed signals, and be stuck in the past.
3. You shouldn’t write it if they don’t want to do anything with you
If your ex stated that they don’t want to do anything with you then sending them a letter is not a good idea.
Yes, you can write it but just so you can express your feelings and let your intrusive thoughts go.
That does well for you because repressed feelings will keep you a prisoner in the past.
Keep in mind that if your relationship has ended permanently and they don’t have feelings for you, no letter will bring them back.
It will only annoy or give them the opportunity to have power over you.
Instead, write down all your feelings;
Most important of all try to get help or be advised by certain relationship coaches;
Moreover, if your ex has blocked you then check how they feel for you in advance.
Maybe they are still angry and have moved. Without having this type of information is hard to know how they will react.
4. Definitely: You should write an apology letter
Indeed if you want to set your ex free or reconcile then you should write your ex a letter.
You don’t have to think this like you’re being the one that is weak.
On the contrary, this is the type of strength that will help you to move forward either way.
Keep in mind, that writing your ex a letter will not get them back.
It will help them realize a lot of things that maybe you couldn’t say or mention at the moment.
While writing the letter, try to be real and honest. Don’t try to exaggerate or write things that you think would attract your ex.
Your letter should be an example of saying things that you might have been haunting you.
This letter should be like an open door to a peaceful life.
5. You shouldn’t write a letter as an act of impulsive feelings
When you’re mad or you think that you still have feelings for your ex try to step back and calm down.
This is not a proper moment to write your ex a letter.
~Instead of doing it, try to work on your feelings first and go to the root of why you’re feeling like this.
~If you miss your ex then try to find out what makes you miss them.
It might be your mutual friends or the same places that you used to go that will trigger your feelings.
Try to go to new places and hang out with new people.
Also, you can write a letter about what you’re feeling at the moment but do not send it until you’re certain.
6. When you need to disconnect from emotional trauma
Writing a letter to your ex when you decide to move on is a purifying and detoxing process.
You pour everything that you couldn’t or didn’t have a chance to say.
Only by writing what you’re feeling and writing your ex a letter, you will be able to detach.
Sometimes those suppressed feelings keep you in the dark and in the past.
To break these chains, you should write specific things that are a burden to you right now.
Let’s take this for example:
I am just writing to you to let you know how I feel right now. I will cut this to the chase.
When we broke up and you stated that you were done with me, I felt so small.
Started to hate me and I was questioning my worth.
Yes, rejection and being in denial and not getting closure from your favorite person does this.
Hence, I was so persistent to get an answer that I was so blind and couldn’t focus to find my true self.
Indeed, I was hurt, but all this rollercoaster of events and feelings helped me to reflect differently.
I am not the same anymore and I do not feel the same about you anymore. Feelings do change with time and I am in motion, which is good.
Wish you the best,
In the end, you are just taking your thoughts and feelings in your mind to words into the letter.
You shouldn’t send this letter to your ex by all means.
If you have told them how they hurt you before and they moved on, then you shouldn’t send it.
Just write it to them but for your own sake: to heal and to move forward.
7. Avoid writing a letter to a narcissist or controlling ex
This is a no-no. You shouldn’t write a letter and send it to them because this is what they want.
Constantly, they try to play mind games with you and have you under control.
A narcissistic ex never admits that they were wrong or that they hurt you.
Instead of doing it, they will breadcrumb you or trigger you to make you think that you’re guilty.
If you start and write a letter to your ex, in this case, you will give them the whole power.
- So, to avoid it, you can try new hobbies or activities.
- Block your ex on any platform.
- Avoid going to the same places.
Keep yourself in motion until you check all the boxes above!
8. You shouldn’t send a letter if you need their compassion and pity
I don’t advise you to send your ex a letter if you are in need of their attention and pity.
Indeed, after the breakup, you feel lonely and anxious, and you need to know what your ex thinks of you.
That’s pretty normal and you don’t have to be hard on yourself for doing it.
- Hence, instead, vent to your friends or family.
- Try to travel more and focus on your job.
- Try to talk with different therapists that can help you narrow down your feelings.
Because you are feeling hollow and lonely, having someone’s attention is your priority now.
That’s quite understandable. Yet, talking about your feelings will be a step closer to learning to love yourself.
9. You should write a letter when there is a chance for you to reconcile
If your breakup wasn’t that messy and things were left unfinished, then there is a chance that a letter will do good.
In this case, you should write a letter and let your ex know what you feel about them.
~ Try to be honest and use proper words.
~Write down why you want to reconnect with your ex.
~Don’t be afraid to admit what you might have done wrong and how you can change it.
In general, try to not write only things that you might think your ex would find interesting.
It’s important to write how you’re feeling and prove your point.
Otherwise, the letter might seem to your ex just like mere writing.
10. If you want to stay friends then you can write a letter to your ex
You should write your ex a letter if you want to apologize or just stay friends.
If you broke up on good terms and want to continue the friendship then you can express how you’re feeling.
To be more specific, if you think that they are a person that you need to have in your life do it.
If they feel the same about you then they would feel appreciated.
A letter is the best form to let them know how you’re feeling and what you want from them.
Also, it’s a great tool to know whether your ex is on the same page as you right now.
They would either accept your friendship or deny it.
Is it worth it to write a breakup letter to my ex?
Yes, it is worth it as long as it helps you to move on or to make things better.
Sometimes, one cannot utter all the thoughts and words that they have in their mind.
A letter is the best way to express all of that and reflect at the same time.
You cannot reflect the same when you talk and when you write.
While you’re talking, you might leave a lot of things unsaid because you might say what comes up in your mind.
On the other hand, when you write, you have the chance to pause and reflect on what you want to say.
It’s a powerful tool to either help you detach from the past and negative feelings or reconnect with one another.
~After the breakup, many things might be unsaid and there might be so many misunderstandings.
Thus, in this case, a letter will give you and your ex the chance to either end up for good or reconcile.
Is writing a letter to my ex “needy”?
Writing a letter to your ex isn’t needy. You can write it and not send it.
Just take it as a way of detoxicating yourself from all that trauma or bitter experience.
Writing out your feelings and directing them to your ex will help you reflect on your past relationship.
Do not write the letter just by having your ex the focus. Put yourself first.
Remember that you’re doing it for yourself.
It’s the same thing as writing in a journal, only when writing a letter to your ex, you are talking to him or her.
~If your letter is about moving on then do it. It will help you toss into the sea a part of you that you needed to nourish.
~If you need to apologize then do it. You will not feel guilty for the rest of your life or live with a permanently heavy heart.
~If you’re writing it to reconcile then do it. You will not regret something that you didn’t try to fix.
It’s all about having a certain perspective.
You will put your thoughts and feelings on paper to change something and not be stuck in the past.
So, there is nothing needy about it unless you are dating a narcissist and you need to be careful as mentioned above.
Their controlling behavior might make you look and feel needy.
My ex wrote me a letter, should I respond?
Before responding to your ex’s letter, you should check what that letter is about.
~Check if that is an apology letter, are they asking for closure, or do they want to reconcile?
~After doing this, try to find out how you feel at this moment.
~Reflect on your feelings first so you don’t rush immediately to answer and hurt yourself or give them mixed feelings.
~Check also if they are just asking for forgiveness or are asking you to come back.
If you don’t feel the same as your ex then it is better to not answer.
Also, if you don’t want to go back to that toxic relationship, you shouldn’t respond to your ex’s letter.
If this letter is a sincere apology then you can respond but according to your boundaries.
Your letter or response should be short and precise.
You might mention that you appreciate their apology and you state whether you want to move on or reconcile.
In the end, if the letter is closure then you should take it and accept that fact.
Responding to closure would be meaningless to them and to you too because that won’t change a thing.
Bottom Line: Should I write my ex a letter?
Yes, definitely, you should write your ex a letter, whether out of love, pain, or anger.
It depends on your situation whether you should send it to them or not, but you should write it no matter what.
Writing this letter helps you to reflect, pour your emotions and thoughts, and reconnect differently.
Even if you are co-parenting, a letter can be a great way to have a healthy connection with them.
You shouldn’t send your ex a letter or respond to them if your feelings aren’t genuine.
If you are still confused and hurt, it’s better to work on yourself before responding to them.