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  • #367435
    Maria
    Participant

    Hello,

    I am writing here in search of some peace of mind and warmth. Also, in the hope I can forgive myself.

    I have been dating my ex boyfriend for 1 year, half of it, we spent physically quite close meeting almost every day, the other half separated by Covid (I thought). We were serious since the beginning and started talking about getting married early on in the relationship. We met during a work trip and work for the same company so it was easy for us to spend a lot of time together. When the pandemic burst, I went back to my home country to be with my family and we kept talking about how to arrange things to get married. He was always telling me that he would come as soon as the borders and that we would get married and he would meet my family etc. We had been waiting for months because international flights were not allowed and finally when the borders re-opened, things changed.

    Prior to that, during that long period of waiting for the borders to open, his mom found a picture of me I had offered him for Valentine’s day, apparently from what he told me, she freaked out. He called me crying and saying that his mom said she would never accept me, that he didn’t like me, that there was something about me that was “off”. She asked about how religious I was, to put everything in context, she is muslim, she started asking if I was planning on wearing the veil (I don’t), which country I was from etc. He told me that he had answered all the questions and all she could say at the end was that something was just off with me. Thus, I understood it was because of my skin color, I am mixed. We I first met him, I remember him saying racist jokes regarding black people, which I brushed, thinking he was just ignorant. I mean, I didn’t take it seriously (I should have).

    My natural reaction was to tell him that we should then put an end to the relationship but my ex-bff told me I should fight for him and that his mother wasn’t that important. And during all these months, that’s exactly what he was selling to me “if she doesn’t accept you then it’s her problem, she’s the one who’s wrong”. So I kind of trusted him but couldn’t sleep anymore at night and had very bad panic attacks out of fear of his family. I had read many articles and hearing from people’s experiences, marrying a huy who’s family doesn’t like you seemed like hell on earth. He kept reassuring me, telling me I was the love of his life and that he would never leave me.

    The borders re-opened, I asked him to come and meet my parents so we could go back together (everything we had planned together FOR MONTHS), he told me he had to ASK his mom’s approval. RED FLAG. Then, I told myself that he was just going to inform her, so he took weeks, saying he talked to his mother and that she was afraid that, culturally, we wouldn’t match, even though we have resembling cultures and same religion. So I was patient, I waited, he started by saying that she needed time but that she was “swallowing” the idea. As if I was so hard to swallow. Eventually, she told him that it was a big no for her and that she wanted him to only marry someone from the same country and same region and that he knew it from the beginning. As a response to this, I ended the engagement, told him his my mom was toxic and racist. He came back asking for a second chance and that all his friends told him he should just marry me (he needs his friends to tell him that). I decided to give him another chance. He came back saying he was too anxious and that we need to take it slowly, that’s the moment I started feeling so hurt. I asked him what time would change if he knew he loved me and I was his first priority. I broke up again and said that the changes were off. He told me that he feared his mom would get sick if we got married, that maybe his mom would get depressed and have to be hospitalized. As if I was such a bad person. He didn’t seem to care about me, about how depressed I was after he pushed me into breaking our engagement.

    He returned a third time, his message said that he would try to do his best not to try to work things again and that he would rather die than live without me (lies, lies, lies). I told him that I didn’t want him in my life and to never contact me again. Blocked him.

    Now, my problem is, I know that this guy was definitely not for me. But, why the lies? I got intimate with him, to a certain extent which in our religion is wrong. When I told him that I felt bad about what we had done in the past, he said that it wasn’t a big deal because we were going to get married anyways. Would that intimacy be the only reason he was with me? He should have known that his mother would be against our marriage, why all these promises if it is to break them? I really feel bad for myself. As if I was so dumb that I didn’t see that he didn’t love me. I can’t believe he did. And it breaks me and makes me feel so stupid.

    #367438
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Maria:

    I will read and reply to your post in about 10 hours from now.

    anita

    #367442
    Maria
    Participant

    Thank you in advance Anita! I also forgot to say that his mother’s first husband own mother didn’t approve of her and didn’t have a good relationship with her. Same for the man she remarried to, his mother didn’t talk to her for 2 years. AND YET, she behaved like this as if she didn’t learn anything from those experiences. And apart from that, these men defied their mothers to be with her and his son couldn’t even do that, I feel maybe I wasn’t worthy enough in his eyes and it breaks my heart to know that I have spent so much energy and time on someone that might have never considered me enough.

    We work at the same place, so I feel stuck thinking about our break-up over and over again, every time I have to send an e-mail and his in the loop. I have no choice but still have him in my life which is very bothering.

    I already had trust issues and I fear for the person coming after him, I feel I can’t never truly trust anyone anymore. Ever.

    #367445
    Amelia
    Participant

    Dear Maria, I go to your post after read your comment in my post. I could sense anger from your comment.

    I am also still trying to recover from break up. I could resonate with your story, because I also got reject from my ex family with same reason. Different religion, different race, different background (even though they don’t know much about it). It is very hurt and disappointing especially when he doesn’t want to fight. Relationship will works if both of you fight together. You can’t fight alone.

    You put your effort and feeling in this relationship, it is natural getting angry, especially to your self. Don’t be so hard to your self. You need to letting go of him and his mother (it is easy to said than done), try to letting go all. I believe in the future, you will be grateful to end this relationship. Forgive your self first. If you are in the same work place, try to minimize the contact with him. If you work by email, just use the email.

    If you afraid that having trust issues, my suggestion is to not make really big expectation in the future. You can learn by this experience, what do you want in next relationship (the partner that fight for us and family that accepting who we are).

    Hope it will help

     

     

    #367447
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Maria:

    First, I will retell your story, quoting you:

    You met a man during a work trip about a year ago. The two of you worked together, and for about six months you spent a lot of time together, “physically quite close meeting almost ever day”. He is Muslim and so are you, of different home countries, similar cultures, and different races, as you are mixed, having a darker skin color. Early in the relationship he made racist jokes regarding black people, but you didn’t take it seriously. “I got intimate with him, to a certain extent which in our religion is wrong… he said that it wasn’t a big deal because we were going to get married anyways”.

    When the pandemic happened, six months or so into the relationship, the two of you “were separated by Covid”, you returned to your home country, and  the relationship became long distance.

    For  months, while separated, he repeatedly told you the following things: that “he would come as soon as the borders (opened) and that we would get married and he would meet my family”, that his mother happened to find a picture of you and “she freaked out”, that she asked him about your religion, if you plan to wear a veil, what country you are from, that he answered all her questions, and that she said that  “she would never accept” you, that she didn’t like you, and that there was something about you “that was just off'”; that you “should fight for him and that his mother wasn’t that important.. if she doesn’t accept you then it’s her problem, she’s the one who’s wrong”, that his mother herself was not accepted by her first husband’s and second husband’s mothers, that you were “the love of his life and that he would never leave” you.

    When the borders finally opened, he told you that “he had to ASK his mom’s approval”. For weeks after that, he told you that he was talking to her, that “she was afraid that, culturally, we wouldn’t match”, and needed time “to swallow” the idea of him marrying you. Later, he told you that “she told him that it was a big no for her and that she wanted him to only marry someone from the same country and same religion and that he knew it from the beginning”. Later he told you that “all his friends told him he should just marry” you. Later, he told you that “he was too anxious and that we need to take it slowly”, and that “he feared his mom would get sick if we got married.. that maybe his mom would get depressed and have to be hospitalized”. After that he told you that “he would rather die than live without you”. The situation now is that you blocked him, but the two of you still work for the same company.

    Second, my input and efforts to answer your questions:

    Particularly in traditional cultures, an engagement is not an engagement if the families on both sides are not involved: if the families never met, if they are not aware of a relationship, and/ or if they never approved of the relationship. In other words, you and him talked about an engagement, but  it takes more than two individuals to get engaged- it takes two families.

    He said to you, or typed for you lots of words, over time. It is very easy to pronounce or type words.  If it involved hard work to talk,  maybe he would talk less. If he had to pay a fine for every lie or partial lie, maybe he would have lied less.

    He told you that his mother just happened to find a photo of you and it was then that she asked him her first questions about you. If this is true, then he didn’t tell her a thing about you for over six months (long after he talked to you about marriage). He lied to you when he told you that he will marry you without her approval. I don’t know if he himself approved of marrying you. In other words, the promise behind the “engagement”, the promise to marry, may have been a lie all along.

    You asked: “why the lies.. Would that intimacy be the only reason he was with me?”

    – while the two of you spent physical time together, maybe the reason for his lies was to have that physical intimacy. When the two of you were long distance, he may have lied simply because you wanted to hear certain things and .. it didn’t cost him anything to tell you what you wanted to hear. Maybe he entertained himself by lying to you, mixing truth and lies, creating a certain drama that broke his boredom.

    “why all these promises if it is to break them?”- because in his own mind, promises are just words one says.

    You started your original post with: “I am writing here in search of some peace of mind and warmth. Also, in the hope I can forgive myself”-

    – I am sorry, Maria. I am sorry that you were lied to. I am sorry that you were involved with a man who doesn’t mind lying. Please don’t be angry with yourself. You didn’t deserve being lied to and you don’t deserve anger. You deserve kindness. You need and deserve to be treated fairly, justly, kindly.

    Learn all that you can learn from this experience so to improve your ability to evaluate people in the future and make better choices for yourself.

    I was lied to, I made poor choices for myself, and I too was angry at myself for it. But growth and learning does not happen when angry at ourselves. Imagine a student in a classroom, will she learn from an angry teacher who is yelling, or will she learn from a calm, patient, kind teacher? Be that calm, patient and kind person to yourself, every day, all day long.

    “I already had trust issues and I fear for the person coming after him, I feel I can’t never truly trust anyone anymore”- good thing, never truly blindly trust anyone anymore. Learn who the person is first, listen to what he says, ask questions, observe him over time: does he talk because it is easy to talk or does he put value in his words.. does he walk his talk.

    Pay attention to his jokes, ask him questions about his jokes.. pay attention to what he says about other people.. if he thinks little of others because of their darker skin color and you have a darker skin color, then he also thinks little of you, for the same reason.

    When you learn and ask questions and observe a man over time, then you will have a rational basis to trust him.

    anita

    #367449
    Maria
    Participant

    Hello Anita,

    Maybe I was blinded by the words. But, indeed it was easy for him to lie, he would always tell that, however, he never lied to the people he loved. Do you think it is my fault that I attracted a liar? Aren’t good people supposed to attract good people too?

    The thing is that he broke up with his ex for me, a 8 year-old relationship, and told me it was because she was toxic. He told me that they were sexually active so I don’t know what else he could get from me? We never actually had sex because I can’t do that before marriage. We were doing other things, I am now very ashamed of but no actual sexual intercourse. Back then, he used to tell me that his ex wanted to get married but that he didn’t want to because she was chiite and not sunite (2 unities in Islam). Might he have been lying to her this whole time? She was from Irak, so very white, I guess.

    Could it be karma coming back to me? I mean he broke up with her after 8 years so we could be together?

    Thank you for the observation advice, but even if I get really good at observing people, the next person could still lie to me? Do you think it is something I do or I am that made him lie to me?

    I truly can’t stop feeling like a fool, like it is all my fault, that I should have known better.

    Thank you Anita for listening to me and giving so much of your time! You’re a blessing.

    #367450
    Maria
    Participant

    Amelia,

    We actually have the same culture and religion.

    Thinking that his mother thinks she’s better than me and that her son is too, drives me crazy, it makes me so mad.

    Her son pictured her as a very pious woman and she wears the veil etc, yet it is forbidden in our religion to be racist.

    I just feel as a total fool, I had already talked to my parents and they had approved of the marriage even though they have told me to be cautious because he’s from a community where people are very racist and problematic. Yet, I was ready to marry him.

    I just wish I could stop being mad.

    I don’t have really good friends that take care of me or cheer me up, just acquaintances so my life is quite lonely now.

    🙂

    #367454
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Maria:

    You are welcome and thank you for your kind words.

    “it was easy for him to lie, he would always tell that, however, he never lied to the people he loved”- he told you (1) that it is easy for him to lie, (2) that he never lied to the people he loved, and (3) that he loved you. So you figured that he did not lie to you because he loved you. Problem is that #2 was a lie, and/ or #3 was a lie.

    Once a person tells you that it is easy for him (or her) to lie- don’t believe what they say next.

    “Do you think it is my fault that I attracted a liar? Aren’t good people supposed to attract good people too?”- it is not your fault that he is a liar. That’s his fault. He was attracted to you because you are an attractive woman. This means that a number of men will be attracted to you: men who are honest and men who lie.

    In other words, you do not attract liars any more than you attract honest men. If you live in a city that has more men who lie than men who are honest, then you are more likely to attract men who lie simply because of the statistical factor.

    “The thing is that he broke up with his ex for me, an 8 year relationship, and told me it was because she was toxic”- remember what I wrote to you right above? He told you that it is easy for him to lie. This means anything he said after that could be a lie:

    Maybe she broke up with him, maybe he broke up with her, but not because of you, but because she was toxic. Maybe she was not at all toxic (he is!), maybe it was not 8 years… maybe, maybe: I can’t trust anything much of what he told you.

    “He told me that they were sexually active so I don’t know what else he could get from me?”- maybe he lied and they were not sexually active (intercourse or otherwise), and the reason he lied was to persuade you to be sexually active with him.

    “Might he have been lying to her this whole time?”- yes, might be. And to you, after her. The thing about people who lie a lot is that they don’t lie all the time, 100% of the time. There is a saying that even a broken clock is telling the truth about the time twice every 24 hours. It is very difficult to be in a relationship with a person who lies a lot, because it is impossible, no matter how hard you try, to figure out what was true in the mix of lies every single day (and night).

    “Could it be karma coming back to me? I mean he broke up with her after 8 years so we could be together?”- he told you that she was toxic. If it was true that she was toxic, then he should have broken up with her, and it would have been the right thing to do, nothing to bring you a bad karma.

    “even if I get really good at observing people, the next person could still lie to me?”- if you get really good at listening, asking questions, evaluating a man over time- you will be able to detect at least 90% of the men who will lie to you.

    “Do you think it is something I do or I am that made him lie to me?”- no. He lied so to promote his self interest or to entertain himself. He told you himself that it is easy for him to lie. This means you are not the first or the last woman he will lie to.

    “I truly can’t stop feeling like a fool, like it is all my fault, that I should have known better”- you should learn from the experience, get better and better at evaluating people. If you engage in this learning experience you will get wiser and wiser. No  one is born wise as far as detecting liars- you have to learn how to do that.

    anita

    #367483
    Maria
    Participant

    Anita,

    I always thought his mother was the faulter and that he was the victim, your perspective on the matter shifted my gear completely. Now, I feel even more hurt and betrayed.

    I will work on myself in order to be better at analyzing people and will go through therapy.

    Thank you! I will keep you updated once I am well over it, if you’re interested 🙂

    #367484
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Maria:

    You are welcome and I am very interested to read updates from you, about how you feel and otherwise.

    Regarding who is whose victim: often children are the victims of their parents, and then, as they grow up, they victimize others. So it is likely that his mother victimized him and then, he victimizes others- you having been one of his victims.

    He was definitely at fault for lying and misleading you, for not being worthy of trust.

    Again, anytime you feel like expressing what you think and feel- please do.

    anita

    #367487
    pink24
    Participant

    Hi Maria,

    I think sometimes the fault isn’t with us for being blind to our exes’ personality, but rather our exes for behaving badly. You believed him. There’s no shame in that. But you also you can’t avoid pain in relationships–that’s part of the deal. Love is always a risk.  And  I think you made out ok in this one. You’re not marrying him! Thank god!

    Your ex sounds quasi-racist, confused, and not really brave or confident. Sometimes one’s family doesn’t know better, and it takes a person confident within himself to know that.  I think he saved you from making a big mistake. You know what they say, “Rejection is God’s protection.”

    I know you feel stupid. Who wouldn’t? But it will pass. All that means is that you put yourself out there – and that’s a good thing!

    One day you’ll find someone who will fight for you, who will want to be with YOU (and not his Mom lol). Take some time for yourself, love yourself LOTS – you’ve had a rough go of it, but every day the pain will be a little bit less.

    Sending you good vibes 🙂

    Pink

     

    #367497
    Maria
    Participant

    Hello Anita,

    I am already back! haha

    I read this article yesterday which got me even MORE DEPRESSED!

    I will quote a part of it:

    “So, if you had the early experience of someone distancing themselves from you or leaving you—or if anyone in your family had that experience—it’s likely you believe that this experience is going to happen again. And because you believe this, you automatically re-create the experience in your relationships today.

    This is why we get caught in the pattern of choosing people who distance themselves from us—because we’re creating our realities from the inside out. We attract people who match what we believe about ourselves and relationships.”

    I have always been bullied since I was a little child and all throughout high school, never understood why people did put so much energy in bringing me down. I grew up and ended up having fears about being abandoned and low self-esteem. One of my only friends, got married this week, she blocked me when I told her I couldn’t attend her wedding because I have a immune disease and can’t put my life into danger. Mainly she was like “if you really wanted to come, you’d” and blocked me, we had been friends for 10years+ and she also bullied me when we were younger.

    All of this makes me feel as if there is a bigger problem underneath, I feel like people will abandon me anyways. When I like a friend, I always take my time and talk to them and try to help them but most of them don’t reciprocate. Thus, I feel like my life is kind of doomed, I can’t do anything but attract this type of people. And I tried everything to love myself enough but how do you know it when you get there? Maybe I can’t love myself enough? What’s even enough?

    Maybe, I just attract people who will inevitably abandon me? That’s why he did?

    Or maybe I am being paranoiac and trying to forcefully put the fault on me?

    Thank you for hearing me, I send you blessings 🙂

    #367498
    Maria
    Participant

    @pink24

    Hello girl,

    You don’t know how much your words meant, it felt so comforting to hear that I didn’t do anything wrong, that it wasn’t my fault. And yes, sometimes we just forget that love will be painful in a way or another.

    Thank you for the good vibes, I send you lots of love!

    -M

    #367502
    anita
    Participant

    Dear Maria:

    You are welcome and thank you for sending me blessings.

    Not everything we read is true. The part of the article you quoted has some truth in it, but it also contains what is not true.

    True: “if you had the early experience of someone distancing themselves from you or leaving you.. it’s likely you believe this experience is going to happen again”.

    Partially true: “we get caught in the pattern of choosing people who distance themselves from us- because we’re creating our realities from the inside out… attract people who match what we believe about ourselves and relationships”-

    – there are many men who are attracted to women who appear easy to use and abuse. But it’s not something the victim is doing (attracting); it is something that the abusers are doing (being attracted to, and acting on that attraction). In other words, a victim is not responsible for the victimizer being attracted to her.

    – we do get caught in bad relationships because we stay with the people who abuse us (trying to make them treat us better, hoping they will change), not because we happened to meet them. Some of the men who will be attracted to you will be honest people, some will not, like I suggested to you before.

    For the rest of your recent post, you shared that you were bullied a lot as a young child and all through high school, “never understood why people did put so much energy in bringing me down”.

    You recently told a former bully and friend of over 10 years (still a bully from time to time through the years?) that you cannot attend her wedding because you have an immune disease and you can’t put your life in danger. She responded by blocking you.

    You feel that your life “is kind of doomed”, that your attention to others is not reciprocated and that “people will abandon me anyways”.

    “Maybe, I just attract people who will inevitably abandon me? That’s why he did?”- if he was attracted to you because you appeared weak, easy to lie to- then it is his wrongdoing, not yours.

    “maybe I am.. trying to forcefully put the fault on me?”- Yes.

    I have one suggestion for you today: examine how you look and how you sound to others, so to see if you appear easy to bully/ abuse. Again, you are not responsible for bullies’ and abusers’ actions, but you can do something to lower your chances of being abused by bullies and abusers.

    Examples: if you are in the habit of not looking at people in the eye, but instead, looking down to the floor; if your voice is very soft, almost inaudible; if you put yourself down when you talk to people (“I am not pretty, I am not smart, etc.).. these things and more communicate low self esteem and being timid. In the minds of abusers, this means: someone I can take advantage of! Someone I can mistreat/ abuse and get away with it!

    Let me know of your thoughts/ feelings.. ?

    anita

     

    #367503
    Peggy
    Participant

    Hello Maria,

    You are not marrying this man.  Thank God you have been saved from that fate.  You are now free to move on to someone who can love you and commit to you and whose family will also love and approve of you.  You have done nothing wrong.  You don’t need to feel ashamed of yourself.

    What is loving yourself enough?  Loving yourself enough is loving yourself completely and utterly, accepting yourself exactly as you are.  You are a miracle of nature, you contain God’s divine spark, your DNA is unique which means you are unique.  Be proud of who you are.  There is no one else like you.  Get into the habit of sending yourself love every day of your life.  Bring to mind someone that you have loved in your life, even if it’s a pet or a toy, relive those joyous feelings and then allow them to flood your body, to fill you up completely, giving as much love to yourself as you have given out.  You are worth it.

    Rest assured nearly everyone gets ‘abandoned’ by someone in their lives.  We all have break-ups.  It’s part of learning about adult relationships, what works for us and what doesn’t.  It’s normal and natural.  As an adult, you can choose what to believe.  Believe that you can attract a genuine, loving, sincere human being into your life and it will happen.

    You may need to work on your self esteem which is much easier than it sounds.  Write a list of your positive attributes, adding to it daily and read them out in a private space until you have completely absorbed them.  This takes about three weeks.  Read them over as often as you like until you are totally and utterly integrated with your special, unique qualities.  Even if you feel ‘stupid’ and your thoughts throw up resistance,  keep going.  It’ll be worth it.

    Begin shining your light and know that you are worth loving.

    My very best wishes to you.

    Peggy

     

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