RelationshipExplained Logo

Why Hasn’t She Returned My Things? [ANSWERED]

She isn’t returning your things because she probably isn’t over you yet. She misses you and can’t let go of your things. Those things help her deal with your absence after a breakup. If you really want those back, there are ways.A man sitting in front of a laptop thinking about his ex

A breakup can never be a pleasant thing. It can be a mature, mutual breakup, but its after-effects can still be severe.

When you are in a relationship, sometimes the home of either one of you becomes a more frequented haunt than the other.

It is a natural tendency to leave your things in each other’s places and particularly in the place where you two spend most of your time together.

But there is little to no time to decide what to do with the pretty large pile of things you have left at her place in case of a sudden breakup.

It is only normal for you to want your things back after a breakup but surprisingly she hasn't approached you yet regarding your things. Let's find out why and what to do next in this article.

Possible reasons why she hasn’t returned your things

She probably isn’t returning your things because she misses you. They remind her of the good times you had in the past.

She deliberately wants to un-see the fact that this relationship is over. Your things are too precious for her to let go of them. They make her nostalgic. She revisits memories as she holds on to them. She misses you but is not willing to let you know that.

However, there can be myriad other reasons too. Let’s dive into her mind to know more. Read on.

#1 She misses you

She has not returned your things for a long time now. She keeps them because she misses you. The things you have left at her place have somehow replaced you in your absence. She misses your time together.

When you are in a relationship, little and otherwise negligible things can mean a lot at times. A range of fond memories can get attached even to a simple pen. The breakup must have happened for a reason, but the memories have already been etched permanently in the minds.

Just look at the case of Monica Geller, from F.R.I.E.N.D.S season 3 episode 1, after she broke up with her boyfriend, Richard, in the previous season.

We find her extremely distraught on her couch, clinging to an old cigar left at her apartment by Richard. She barely left her apartment. She even fished out a bunch of Richard’s hair from her bathroom drain, as a keepsake. People can go to extremes when dealing with a relatively bad breakup.

Each person has their own way of handling loss, breakups, and sad memories. Some can let go of them easily, while others just can’t. If she is not returning your things, she might be holding on to them for longer than expected as her way of dealing with the grief this breakup has caused.

#2 She still has got feelings for you

If she misses you, she still probably has got feelings for you. Even if the breakup was unpleasant, taking you off her mind is a difficult thing to do.

A breakup isn’t a switch that, at once, shuts whatever she feels for you, but it also ensures a stoppage to a relationship. When that happens, she is bound to miss the person who has been a considerably large part of her life for a certain period of time.

Missing you comes from the memories of the good times you have spent as a couple. If she is thinking about the good times, the good memories, she definitely has some feelings left for you at the corner of her heart. She is probably unaware of it, but holding on to your things is proof enough.

If she gets attached to your things, she is actually getting attached to you. She still likes you. The breakup that must have happened for an unpleasant reason is the one that comes in the way of her admitting her true feelings.

The reason for the breakup is stopping her from having a proper conversation with you on the issue.

But that doesn’t mean she will never return your things to you. All you need to do is talk to her about it, clearly.

#3 Your things remind her of the good times

There can be several reasons for your breakup, but that does not negate the fact that you two had made a lot of good memories together.

The things that you left at her place are all that have remained with her after the breakup. It is all that she has left of a relationship that she once was fond of.

The days (even months) after a breakup are particularly distressing times. The things that once were a part of good memories provide her hope and will to survive the grief of you two not being together anymore. 

She is probably trying to recover from the breakup in her own way, slowly, and the things you have left at her place are helping her.

One can rightly admit that holding on to old memories and living in the past is not a very good practice in terms of mental health. But when something provides even a little bit of hope in the trying times, holding on to it is totally worth it.

#4 Your memories are precious to her

When you are in a relationship, you make memories with your partner. These are memories that can last a lifetime.

I’m sure you remember the first time you held the hand of your first love. Everybody remembers that: either fondly or with sadness. These butterfly-in-the-stomach moments become a part of your core memory, which you can visit, from time to time, in your mind.

Inanimate objects that belong to either one of you can acquire a whole new meaning during a relationship and even after it has ended. Memories cling on to them. The things that have been used by you can mean a lot to her because of the memories that got attached to them.

She treasures the time you two have spent together. She was fond of the relationship and is way too sad about the breakup.

She is not willing to give up her precious memories of you. Even if your things are important to you, she will choose to keep them until you go and ask for them. Your things, left with her, are the only remains of the bygone relationship.

#5 She wants you back

She misses you, she still has got feelings for you, and she is unwilling to let go of the old memories. She clearly wants you back.

She is keeping your things with her so that she might get a chance to meet you to return your things when the time is right. She thinks of it as a way to rekindle the faded romance.

She has temporarily replaced you with your things left at her place after your breakup, and that is enough proof for the fact that she is not over you yet. She wants to give this relationship another chance to exist. She wants you back by her side once again. The once fond memories are no longer fond for her, without you in the picture.

#6 She finds comfort in them

In this scenario, your things aren’t yours anymore. It has successfully been transferred to her without your knowledge.

It is common for couples to dress up in each other’s clothing while they are in a relationship. And sometimes, your partner’s clothes provide you with more comfort than your own. 

She is too comfortable using your things and therefore can’t let them go even if you are not in her life anymore. Your things have somehow become more important than you, probably even more useful than her own things.

If you remember Rachel from F.R.I.E.N.D.S, after her famous break up with Ross, you will also remember the episode where she sends back all of Ross’s things left with her, except for one old T-shirt from his teenage days. When Ross asks her to give it back, she says that it has been a thing of comfort for her, to the extent that she sleeps in it.

Similarly, your clothes, your gadgets, and even your coffee mugs can turn into a great source of comfort for her. Therefore, giving it up is going to be a bit difficult for her.

#7 She likes to hold on to things

There are things in our home that we never use. The other day, I found a random bow from an old dress, and I kept it because I wanted to turn it into a fridge magnet. This “other day” was a couple of years ago, and the bow is still waiting behind my closet for the transformation.

Holding on to things is a very humane attribute. People often hold on to random objects from the past even if they have lost all meaning.

If she is not returning your things, it doesn’t always mean she is still in love with you. She is probably holding on to the inanimate objects because she doesn’t really know what to do with them.

She is not very good at throwing away objects that are not in use. She would probably return them to you if you ask her to do so, and if you don’t, your things might have to stay in some dark corner of her home, forgotten for eternity.

She is not going to cry over your things if she has moved on. It’s just that throwing away is not her thing. Maybe she actually wanted to use them in some way but somehow forgot about them.

She has no problem returning them to you, but that kind of communication is probably not happening between you two, obviously for the breakup.

Talk to her, ask her to return your things. It is the only rational thing to do in a situation like this.

#8 She just forgot

When you are in a relationship and stay with her at her place all the time, it is very normal for your things to get mixed up.

Almost all relationships reach a point where your things become indistinguishable. And then comes the breakup. If it is a sudden one, infused with harsh words, yelling, and fights, it will practically be impossible to segregate your things and then storm out of the door.

If you sit on it for a few days, you might even forget exactly what and how many things you have left at her place before storming out. She is bound to forget about it.

If your breakup were a bad one, it would take you a considerable amount of time to approach her with the demand to return your things. If she moves on by this time, she has definitely forgotten about them. 

She is not going to come to you with a bag full of your things, as they show in the movies. It will totally be your responsibility to get them back now.

#9 She’s trying to punish you by not giving them back

If your breakup was a bad one, not returning your things will be her way to get back to you. She knows you want them, and not getting them back makes her happy. She thinks this way she will make you pay for being bad at the relationship.

No one can be totally good or totally bad. There is a grey area in everyone. If she thinks she is right and it is only justified to keep your things, she is clearly being irrational.

And this irrationality in anger is very normal. It is a common human attribute. Even you think you were right in the relationship. But as your things are at stake here, you will need to be the bigger person if you really want them back.

#10 She is a hoarder

She just likes to hoard things. You are not the issue in this case. If she is a hoarder, there will be no difference in your things and a random bottle cap she found under her bed two years ago. This is a mental health issue.

If you have been in a relationship with this person, then you probably will know about this condition. You will also know that getting back your things from the hoarder, who keeps every little thing stacked up in her home, is difficult.

Talking her into giving your things back to you will not at all be easy. She probably thinks your things will be useful to her.

What can you do?

If your things are important to you, you need to get them back from the girl you broke up with. Getting them back can be difficult. No breakup is a pleasant thing.

Approaching her with your demands can meet a hostile response. If there is a certain level of maturity, the exchange of things can be peaceful.

However, there are ways of approaching a person who is no longer in a relationship with you. Check out the ideas given below.

#1 Drop a text in her inbox

Don’t intimidate her with a sudden call if you want your things back. Text her instead.

The text should clearly contain whatever you want from her. It can even give out a formal vibe. That will ensure your seriousness about what you have left at her place. It will be better if you come straight to the point.

You can write something like: “Hey, I have left some of my belongings at your place. I need them back. When should I pick them up?”

If you have been blocked, ask a common friend to send the text on your behalf.

However, if your text doesn’t get a reply, you can attempt to call her.

#2 Call her once

If she replies to your text, call her to fix a time to get your things. It’s that simple.

But, if she doesn’t reply, you will have to call her. Start your conversation with utmost politeness even if you are annoyed by her voice. 

Be very straightforward with your demands. Just call her up and ask her to return your things once and for all.

Remember, your things are with her, and she has the full power to damage them if she wants. Keep your voice gentle and ask for your things; maybe she will give them up.

#3 Have a clear conversation

Both of you can have feelings for each other. She can still be in love with you, and you can still be pining over losing her.

Your conversation over getting things back should be clear in that case. If you are on the same page, you can even attempt to give this relationship a second chance.

However, if you have no intention to get back to her once again, it will be best to talk to her about that in person. 

Try to make her understand why you broke up in the first place. Make her remember what went wrong in your relationship. Explain to her why rekindling the romance is probably not the best idea, and holding on to old memories is definitely not good for either of your mental health.

#4 Be rational with your arguments

Breakups are not easy, and if you are meeting the person you have broken up with, your brains are going to be flooded with a rush of good and bad memories.

Often, in situations like this, the bad memories take over. Arguments can happen on the doorstep, and it won’t be easy to hold your fort of rationality in times like this.

But as I have said earlier, your things are at stake here, so you will have to be the bigger person. If you really want to get them back, you will have to reach out to her with rational arguments about why she should return your things back to you. 

You will have to approach her with proper logic to your arguments. It is going to be a long conversation.

Summing up

Maybe she is not returning your things because she isn’t really over you yet. The things provide comfort to her in her deplorable state of mind. She misses being with you.

Your things might act as your substitute in your absence. If you really need them back that bad, talk to her. There is nothing that a good conversation can’t solve.

Nirajana Mukherjee

Senior Writer

Coming Up Next