He wants to be friends – now

We'll chat today at 1. (Sorry for the Thursday to Wednesday switch this week.)

Hello there,

My girlfriend and I (in our early 20s) were in a very serious relationship (we were basically engaged) for more than two years, until eventually things fell apart over the course of a couple of months. I had a lot of issues with myself (insecurities I often presented as arrogance, etc.). I could be very mean to her, and I've taken time since the breakup to work on improving and bettering myself.

I am NOT the same person I was, and we are currently friends (she lives with her family). We text back and forth, and I have called her a few times. The conversations have gone really well.

Since then, I have realized what a complete idiot I was. I think she would be willing to be friends and try something new, but the problem is her mother. She lives with her parents, and her mother (who used to really like me) now hates me, and I don't really blame her. I don't really know what to do, because my ex-girlfriend wants to come visit me and have fun as friends, but her mom simply won't allow it. How do I get her mother to forgive me and see that I am not the same person I was? It's been a couple weeks since the breakup, and I'm not sure how much time to give it.

– How long


It's only been a few weeks? After two years? If that's the case, you're asking for too much and way too soon.

Your insecurity and arrogance is telling you that because you've changed (or think you've changed), you deserve everyone's forgiveness, validation, and attention. But that's not how it works. People forgive on their own timeline. You must be patient.

You also must acknowledge that this is a real breakup, and you need space to reset. The fact that you're so focused on her companionship tells me that you're probably not ready to pursue a friendship. You have to figure out what it means to be single – really single – before you decide how you fit into each other's lives.

I'd recommend cutting off all contact for now, but, at the very least, please leave her mother alone. Your ex can handle her own family. Her mom is her business.

– Meredith

Readers? Should they be in touch at all?