HELP ME, HARLAN! – Bitter boyfriend wants ex to know that he found someone better

By Harlan Cohen

Harlan Cohen

Dear Harlan,

A couple of years ago, my girlfriend broke up with me for no apparent reason. She ended the relationship. I was surprised and hurt. She still has never offered any type of explanation. I pushed my feelings aside as best as I could. A year and a half ago, I found a new girlfriend, and it’s a much healthier and better relationship. I’m so grateful that my ex broke up with me. This brings me to my question: My ex and I now go to the same college. It’s a big school, but I see her in my chemistry lab every week. I have this fantasy of going up to her and telling her that I’m so thankful she broke up with me because I’m in a much happier, healthier and better relationship now. Do you think I should tell her, or should I let it go? I just want to see her reaction.

Seeking Revenge

Dear Seeking Revenge,

I’ll pretend I’m your ex. Imagine you walked up to me and told me that you’re in a new and better relationship. And then you told me how grateful you are that I broke up with you. Here’s my reaction: “Can I be honest with you? For someone who is in a new and better relationship, you’re still spending a lot of time thinking about me.” There’s nothing to be gained here. She is in your past. Talking to her and telling her about your new relationship only starts the relationship again. It’s a distraction. Why put energy into someone who is no longer part of your life? If you want to get over this, continue working to be stronger, happier, healthier, fitter, smarter, better, interesting and more confident than ever. Let her approach you and bring up the past if she wants to discuss it with you. Let her tell you about her empty, sad life since she broke up with you. If she’s curious about your life, she can check out Facebook or Instagram. The answer is simple: Don’t talk to her about it. Give your current girlfriend all of your energy and love.


Dear Harlan,

I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve been friendzoned over the years. I’m tired of being passed over for jerks who treat women like garbage. Should I try treating women like garbage and see how that works for me? I’m tired of always being the friend. Maybe I need to change my appearance or grow a wild mustache? Thanks for letting me vent.   

Mustache Man

Dear Mustache Man,

Changing your appearance and treating women like garbage will just turn you into angry, creepy friendzoned guy with a crazy mustache. Want to fix this? Stop pretending you’re the victim. You’re not a victim. You’re also not looking for a friend — you’re looking for a girlfriend. Pretending you’re looking for a friend is disingenuous. I get that it’s safer to get close to someone if you’re a friend, but it’s not honest. If you want a girlfriend, go out and find women who are looking for love. You can find them on online dating sites and on dating apps. You find them by getting set up by friends, family and co-workers. You can look for women at singles’ events. I know it’s much scarier to start a relationship with a date, but it’s the quickest way to get out of the friend zone.


Harlan is author of “Getting Naked: Five Steps to Finding the Love of Your Life (While Fully Clothed and Totally Sober)” (St. Martin’s Press). Write Harlan at or visit online: All letters submitted become property of the author. Send paper to Help Me, Harlan!, 2720 Dundee Road, Suite 226, Northbrook, IL 60062.

© Harlan Cohen 2018; Distributed by King Features Syndicate Inc.


HELP ME, HARLAN! – Bitter boyfriend wants ex to know that he found someone better–