Post # 1
I have an ex-boyfriend that was recently diagnosed with stage 4 cancer and is undergoing chemo.
7 years ago, I told him I didn’t want to continue our friendship. He protested and didn’t understand, but respected my decision. The back story is we dated for a couple years. He wanted to get more serious and I realized I was just stringing him along with no intent to marry him. So, we broke things off and remained friends for a couple years after we dated. He ended up getting remarried and we maintained contact every so often. But, then we started emailing more frequently and I felt the tone change to a more flirty one. I enjoyed our interaction (perhaps a bit TOO much) and I decided it was best for both of us, if I cut things off completely.
Fast forward to now – I heard through a mutual aquaintence that he was going through all of this. My first thought was: WHY did my mutual aquaintence do this?! I wasn’t in contact with him at all and I wouldn’t have been the wiser. But, now that I know – I can’t stop thinking about it…. and I’m wondering if I should reach out to him.
Here are the pros/cons I’ve come up with:
Pros (to contact him): offer him support and friendship during a tough time
Cons (to not contact him): potentially awkward with his wife (I’ve met her once and it was awkward), potentially awkward with DH (if I start investing a lot of time into a relationship with an ex BF it would cause jealousy issues.
When I first learned the news, I was NOT going to contact him. He has a public support site and I’ve been following it along and I think that’s the reason I’m changing my mind and want to reach out to him. Truth is, I do care about him, and am sad he’s going through something like this and, had we remained friends, would desire to be very supportive during such a time.
I do not think I’m the end all be all to friendship and/or support and he’s doing JUST fine without me in his life…. – that’s the other side.
Do I just stay silent?! I realize he very well could die from his illness – and I’m at peace either way (meaning, just because he could die isn’t a reason for me to contact him).
Post # 3
I see no need to contact him. He has a wife, he’s moved on and you coming back in the picture is not neccessary. Quite frankly, you did him wrong, and the best thing you could do is let him be at peace.
Post # 4
@oracle: I would be a passive support. Follow his support site. Contribute financially if they look for donations to medical biils. Maybe even post an encouraging message if his site allows such things. But as far as calling/text/email? No. You guys are not actively friends at this point, and rekindling a friendship due to an illness will look like something done out of pity, not empathy.
Post # 5
If you were in his position – and you knowing him – do you think he wants to hear from you? When you cut things off completely, was he understanding? I would maybe send a note of well wishes to help encourage him, but would not do more than what I would do for anyone that I’m a mere acquaintance of.
Post # 6
I would reach out. Definitely tell DH first, let him know that you’ll be doing it and why. Maybe sending a sypmapthy card through the mail — something to let him know your thoughts are with him, but doesn’t allow for immediate back and forth?
Post # 7
I wouldn’t get involved. There really is no point, I’m sure his thoughts are going to his treatment and his remaing time with his wife. He’s managed to move on twice now I’d just leave it alone.
Post # 8
@oracle: I wouldn’t go see him or phone him, but I would send him a “get well” card. When you know you’re probably going to die it doesn’t hurt to know one more person gives a shit about you. I would also probably have the card be from myself and my husband as opposed to just me.
Post # 9
Reaching out is self-serving. He has plenty of friends and family to support him. You’ll do more harm than good (your DH, his DW, and possibly him) by reaching out. It will make YOU feel better but will it really make HIM feel that much better? I agree with being a silent supporter. Follow the website, donate if you can, but leave it be.
Post # 10
@oracle: don’t contact him. you aren’t friends – i’m sure he has a rich life full love friends and a loving wife, not to be rude but, accept that he likely doesn’t need your friendship and that you reaching out to him could be complicated, awkward and wierd for him. also think of his wife – i would respect their marriage and her ability to love and care for him by not intruding in this crazy emotional time in their lives.
my attitude would be, if you don’t want to contact him and share in his life in good times (and i TOTALLY get why you don’t, and agree) why would you do so in bad times? let him lean on the people who are in his life in a more meaningful way.
Post # 11
I would proably donate to his page, leave a comment of support, and leave it at that. Tell DH and make sure he’s ok with it.
My DH and I have an understanding that if one of our exes was in a time of need, that we would be ok with a show of support. For example, when my ex’s grandfather died I sent him condolences. That’s just the kind of people DH and I are.
Post # 12
- Wedding: August 2013 - Wynn Las Vegas
I would contact him – but not by phone or in person. I would either post a comforting message on his fb, or send a thoughtful card. I think he would be happy at the support.
Post # 13
Seems to me that jumping in at such a time could just cause him more stress and confusion when it’s the last thing he needs.
Post # 14
No, I wouldn’t contact him, it’ll probably add more emotional stress if he hasn’t gotten over you or make him start thinking about why you are contacting him again after all these years… or just to pity him?!
Just silently support him, pray for him, and donate anonymously. You don’t want to make things more complicated for him.
Post # 16
You aren’t friends, so no, I wouldn’t contact him. If you want to support him, maybe send something or donate something anonymously.