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Broken Engagement to No Contact to Getting Back Together – Help!

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This topic contains 8 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  Mark 9 months ago.

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  • #127875

    Kendall Adams
    Participant

    In May of 2015, my boyfriend of 3 years proposed to me. It was the happiest day of my life! He then moved out to the city where I live, and things were going really great with regards to our relationship. He had a hard time finding a job, had not yet gotten into grad school, so was really stressed out. A few months ago, he ended our engagement, and a week later packed up all of his things out of our apartment, and moved back home. It was shocking and still is so painful to me.

    After he ended the engagement, we had a few months of terrible communication, followed by the last couple of months of good communication. It's now been 9 months since he ended our engagement. I love him so much, and still want to work things out. He got accepted into grad school nearby where I live for his Global MBA. He said he just needs to focus on school right now, and can’t deal with the expectations of being together or deal with the commitment of being in a relationship. He expected me to wait until he’s ready to move forward, and wanted to us to both have kind, patient, and respectful communication to rebuild our relationship. He is 39, and I am 24. I say this not because the age gap is an issue (it’s not) but because it really concerns me that he can’t focus on both school and being engaged/married like we had always planned.

    Most recently, he surprised me for Valentine's Day, cooked dinner, had a really nice time, etc. Leading up to that, I cut him off for periods of time because it was too difficult to talk when he wouldn't commit. I was feeling bad about it because everyone it was one-sided and I felt he didn't understand why it was so painful to be talking like we do but not be committed in a relationship. He needs kindness and patience and respect, but I need security and stability and trust with him, ie commitment. Yesterday, something clicked where he just seemed to get it. He finally seemed to understand the hurt and pain I've been going through, and he was rather emotional and felt very convicted about it.

    He texted me saying, “I need time to mature and figure out what I want in life. I don't want to project my problems on you or drag your heart along; I can see how much pain it's causing you and it's not fair to do that. I thought if we talked and saw each other sometimes, something is better than nothing, but I understand that I have to have my yes be yes and my no be no, not put us in this in between state. I feel horrible for the pain I have caused you.

    I am not ready to commit right now. I think we should take a communication sabbatical to seek God so that my yes can be yes and my no can be no. I love you and want to treat your heart right, and I haven't been. I love you so much, and I want the best for you and for us. I feel like I can't give you what you want or deserve in a relationship right now.”

    So we talked on and established that we would meet up in two months at a place in our hometown, but would cut off all communication until then. We decided that when we meet up, we will talk and see how we are doing, and then either be in a relationship then because he'll have decided that's what he wants, or cut things off entirely. It may seem wrong to have this kind of ultimatum, but after 10 months of constant back and forth after a painful broken engagement, I need some closure and resolve.

    Lent starts on March 1 and it's my favorite part of the church year because it's really when I re-focus and channel myself spiritually. I think things will get easier during this season, but for now this is going to be very difficult. I'm not even sure what prayers I should be praying (I still love Jeff and would like us to end up together but maybe I shouldn't want that, I don't know) or how I should be conducting myself, if I should be going on dates, etc and how to refine myself in the meantime. I'll work out a lot and pray and try to better myself and all the usual stuff but I know this is going to be an extremely difficult desert for me to cross and equally as hard for Jeff.

    My question is, how do I get through these two months? What do I do each day? What has to happen for him to commit? I want to end up with this man, as crazy as it sounds. I want to mature as a person as much as I want him to, but I just don't know how to get through these months, hoping for the best and preparing for the worst.

    Thank you everyone in advance for your input <3

    #127955

    anita
    Participant

    Dear Kendall Adams:

    You wrote above, regarding the two month wait: “I don’t know) or how I should be conducting myself, if I should be going on dates, etc.”

    In your first thread, five and a half months ago you wrote: “I’ve tried moving on, I’ve tried dating other people, am spending a lot of time with my girlfriends, etc. and nothing is working. Each day I hurt more and more, and I’m afraid he will abruptly just end things again and crush my heart if we are together. I love him, and I’m not sure what to do”-

    Learning from your own experience, dating, while waiting for Jeff, did not work for you, neither did spending a lot of time with girlfriends. You wrote, “nothing is working.”

    Waiting for Jeff to bring the broken engagement back to life has been long and difficult for you. Nothing changed in the last five and a half months of waiting.

    What if you no longer wait for him? What if you place Jeff in your past and leave him there? What if you “re-focus and channel” yourself during this coming Lent to a life without Jeff, use Lent as a time to let go of the old and make space for the new?

    anita

    #128015

    Kendall Adams
    Participant

    Anita, do you think that it's possible, in this communication sabbatical, he will come around and decide he wants to be committed to me again?

    You are right though – I have to prepare for the worst and face the loss. How do I truly let go of him, let go of the old, to make space for the new?

    #128041

    anita
    Participant

    Dear Kendall Adams:

    You wrote: “after 10 months of constant back and forth after a painful broken engagement, I need some closure and resolve“- what you want is a revival of the engagement with Jeff and a loving married life to follow. If that is not possible, you want to move on, to let go of Jeff and of the hopes and dreams of a life with him.
    You KNOW what you want.

    Let's look closer at what he wants, quoting from his text to you:

    “I need time to mature and figure out what I want in life.”- he is 39, and it's been 10 months following the broken engagement. He is still not mature. He still does NOT KNOW if he wants you in his life.

    He continued: “…I thought if we talked and saw each other sometimes, something is better than nothing”- all he has for you is “something (that) is better than nothing”- that something is so little compared to what you want: a revival of the engagement and a married life. That “something”, clearly is far from adequate for you.

    “but I understand that I have to have my yes be yes and my no be no, not put us in this in between state”- I agree. Notice that he wrote that HE is putting you in this “in between state” and is proposing to continue to put you in this in-between-state for another two months.

    “…I am not ready to commit right now.”- again, this is after 10 months of In-between-state and at 39.

    “I think we should take a communication sabbatical to seek God so that my yes can be yes and my no can be no.”-
    Notice he is suggesting to put you in this in-between-state, which he acknowledges is painful to you for another two months, calling it a ‘sabbatical to seek God”- giving his indecisiveness a religious touch.

    “I love you and want to treat your heart right, and I haven’t been. I love you so much, and I want the best for you and for us. I feel like I can’t give you what you want or deserve in a relationship right now.”- stated for the third time: NO. Basically he did say NO to your relationship for the third time in this very recent text.

    I will put all this together in the next post I am about to type (this is becoming too long)

    anita

    #128045

    anita
    Participant

    Dear Kendall Adams:

    I miscounted. He told you his NO twice, not three times. The first is: “I am not ready to commit” and the second: “I can’t give you what you want or deserve in a relationship.” The NO is in the “I am NOT ready and in “I can NOT give you…”

    This is what I would do at this point, if I was you. I would write him a letter or an email and make it very honest and very true to you. The following is an example, suggestion, take from it what is true to you, make it your own:

    Dear Jeff:

    I have loved you for so long, wanting to have you in my life as my husband. I still desire that. I re-read your text. You wrote that you care about your yes being yes and your no being no. On further re-reading I realized that you did say your No twice in this text. The first: “I am not ready to commit” and the second: “I can't give you what you want or deserve in a relationship”

    As much as I wish the truth was different, it is right here in front of me, your very NO. It is the same NO evident in you breaking our engagement as well as in the ten months to follow. I just didn't see it.

    Now that I see it, as painful as it is for me, as much as I wish it wasn't so, as hard as I prayed it wasn't so, I must accept reality; I must accept your no.

    I wish you well.

    (your name)

    Notice in my quotes of his NO, the two quotes, I ended them before his words “right now”- the suggestion in the “right now” is that it may be different later. That is his in-between-states input. But you don't want to be in this in-between-states, so you are helping him in putting into practice the famous Matthew 5:37New King James Version “But let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No.’ For whatever is more than these is from the evil one.”

    What can be a more spiritual, loving act on your part, than to help him move away from “the evil one”- the in-between-states?

    If you send him this message, and he responds, let me know of his response, will you?

    anita

    #128083

    Holly
    Participant

    I'm really sorry you're in this situation, where you don't feel as if you're the master of your own fate and are waiting on someone who doesn't seem to know what they want. I'm not perfect, but I can say: as much as is possible, you can try to live your life following what YOU want. Not waiting for what someone else might, or might not, want from you.
    So, to that end, I think it would be a wonderful thing to get your feelings out, and express them to him, in a letter might be the best way to do that considering your past experiences with him. And focus on what YOU need out of a partner. Then get it out there – and let go. It'll be really tough, I know. I'm sure you've considered this already, but how safe would you feel, going back to him? I wouldn't. I'd always be scared he might change his mind for no reason and leave me…you know?
    I have no idea what your practical situation is, but I'd try to focus on me and creating a safe haven for myself. And I hope you don't mind my saying so, but if I had faith, I would entrust the situation to God. I'd pray every day. I'd even ask a friend to pray with me. All the best

    #128111

    Kendall Adams
    Participant

    Anita (and Holly!)

    Thank you so much for your kind words and encouragement, and especially for your advice.

    I sent the letter out similar to your brilliant wording Anita, and I added some loving touches and more or less expressed that I die to us and that I am letting him go. I felt a sort of release when I put it in the mail. I doubt he'll respond, but at least it will give him something to think about/consider until we talk again in 55 days (yes I am counting down!) I just hope he doesn't find this as breaking the ‘no contact' or disrespected in some way. I was kind in my wording though so I don't think he'll be upset.

    Every day seems to be an uphill battle, but yes I need to give this up to God. Jeff would really have to demonstrate himself for me to go back to him, but I earnestly hope that in the coming weeks he grows in maturity and decisiveness, and I grow in strength. Honestly I've never felt something like this before in my heart. It's awful because it's so hard. Any suggestions for things I can do each day to make this easier or make time go by? I am trying to keep busy – honestly it's first thing in the morning, late at night, and then at work when I think about it and my heart hurts the most. It's better when I'm with friends or staying busy.

    #128123

    anita
    Participant

    Dear Kendall Adams:

    You are welcome.

    I don't understand though… if you wrote him in a letter that you accept his NO, why are you keeping the plan to see him in two months? My idea in sending that letter was that there will not be yet another wait, another in-between-state (next two months).

    How is the letter you sent congruent with another waiting period? (I am not certain that the two month wait is a bad idea, but tend to think it is. My idea was for you to no longer wait)

    anita

    • This reply was modified 9 months ago by  anita.
    #128169

    Mark
    Participant

    So I'm not claiming it the best advice, but I was in this situation and the girl I took a break with said it helped her to write letters to me, for herself, not to actually give to me. Hope this helps and best of luck!

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