Relationships can come apart for a whole lot of reasons and the best thing that the partners can do is to go their own ways. However some people have more trouble moving on than others and they keep trying to make unwanted contact with a former partner. If your ex girlfriend has been having trouble letting go and has become obsessive in her attentions to you, here are a few ways to deal with the situation.
Make things clear
Be respectful the next time you meet, but also explain your side of the situation and why you think the relationship can't work. Assure her than she doesn't want a relationship with someone who doesn't love her. Encourage her to find a partner that will meet her needs better than you can. Try not to hurt her feelings but don't lead her on either. If the breakup is fresh, let your girlfriend know that you don’t want to be in touch with her. Avoid parting with such phrases as “I’ll always be there for you” or “We are still friends” which may be mistaken as invitations to renew contact. If you know that your ex has difficulty in letting go of people from her life, be clear from the beginning as to what is and is not allowed.. Perhaps you can be friends down the road, but if the breakup is fresh, let her know that you need space. Politely but firmly ask her not to contact you until you are ready.
TIP: Read the guide to prevent a break up or get back with your ex.
Keep your distance
If you and your former girlfriend used to meet each other at the gym or on the commute, try and change your schedule now. Bring in as much distance as possible between you since being near her will only reinforce her feelings that she could possibly get you back. This may be more difficult if you are neighbors or co-workers but look for a way to minimize your chances of coming across each other.
If despite your making it clear that you don’t want to be contacted by her, your ex girlfriend keeps bothering you, it is time to confront her. Tell your ex in no uncertain terms that this kind of behavior qualifies as stalking, it makes you feel uncomfortable and that it needs to stop – now. This is rather difficult when you have already shared an intimate past and you may hesitate for fear of appearing too rude, insensitive or unnecessarily paranoid. However remember that unlike you, your ex does not feel constrained by the thought of social niceties; if she had been so, then she would not have been bothering you around in the first place. Thus you are entirely within your rights to tell her to back off. Do this as far as possible before a friend who can act as a witness not only to your ex’s unwanted attentions but also to your assertive reactions.
Persistent phone calls are one of the most common forms of stalking. If your ex won’t stop calling you, tell him you will not talk to her. Instead of saying "I can't talk to you", tell her clearly "I won’t talk to you." Maybe you can invest in caller ID which will help you to identify any wanted callers. Many stalkers know that they can punch in a code to keep their name and phone number private. If possible, you can have calls marked "private" blocked. This way your ex won’t be able to get through to you unless she is willing to divulge her name and phone number. You could change your phone number but these days because of the internet, there are all kinds of ways and means to find out a number – even if it is unlisted. Instead if you can afford it, get a second phone line installed. Since your ex will keep using the first line to call you, you will be able to avoid any unintentional phone contact with her but at the same time you won’t miss any calls because your family and friends will have your private number to the second line.
Let others know
Stalking is a serious situation but it is mostly associated with men obsessing over their ex girlfriends and wives. Fact though is that women can be equally prone to stalking since it is a type of psychological condition. Also if the breakup had been initiated by you, your ex may be playing the abandoned woman card and trying to make you feel guilty about having left her. So even if you are being stalked by a woman, you should not have to face it alone. Let your family and friends know what is going on with you. Tell everyone that your ex is creating trouble and what you are doing to stop her. This will not only send out a clear signal to your ex that you are actually over her, but also let her know that there are other people in the picture who know what is going on and who will contact the police in case something untoward happens to you. It is important to let your landlord know about the situation so that he/she cannot unwittingly give out any kind of information about you or hand over duplicate keys to your apartment. If need be, tell your boss as well but also reassure him/her that the situation will not hamper your productivity at work.
Contact the police
Above all, make your personal safety the foremost concern. Any instance when you feel that your ex is threatening you or your loved ones, call 911 or get the police involved. Don’t feel embarrassed that the suspect is a former lover - remember that the police have seen it all. It is extremely important to avoid minimizing your situation or fears to the police. Even if they are busy attending to hundreds of such cases in a week, keep in mind that a police officer would much rather spend time doing paper work on a stalking rather than investigating an assault or even murder. And from your perspective, it is always a good idea to keep the law in the loop; even if your ex has not directly harmed you, having your case on record with the authorities will stand you in good stead later when you might need concrete evidence to fall back upon.