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Emotional Understanding: Wanting To Help After the Break Up

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This topic contains 8 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  anita 2 months ago.

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  • #153618

    Sleepy_Kiki
    Participant

    “There is a big difference between giving up and letting go.

    Giving up means selling yourself short. It means allowing fear and struggle to limit your opportunities and keep you stuck. Letting go means freeing yourself from something that is no longer serving you.

    Giving up reduces your life. Letting go expands it. Giving up is imprisoning. Letting go is liberation. Giving up is self-defeat. Letting go is self-care.”

     

    I’ve been dating a guy, that I’ve known for about two years in college, through a long distance relationship for about six months now, and last night I broke up with him.

    Before we started dating we were friends, and when we started dating, I tried really hard to give him the attention that he needed, especially since I’m a reserved person. Initially, when we spoke to each other, either through skype or during meet ups, I’d ask him about himself, and what he wanted out of this relationship, his answers paralleled with mine so I thought we were okay.

    Something that did concern me though, was that he wanted to skype me everyday, which, a part of me thought was excessive, but then I thought, “maybe that’s how relationships work, you talk every day”. Also, because we were long distance, he wanted me to send him pictures, which I thought was okay since we couldn’t always see each other.

    As the days went on and we had our first meet up at my apartment and after driving him around to several things we planned to do that week end I asked him to make me some tea. He immediately refused. I had to beg him before he did it. I thought it was because he was unfamiliar with my kitchen so I didn’t think much of it.

    After that however, it seemed like, if I didn’t catch the “fault” things seemed to spiral out of control. During our first meet up we got physical (and I don’t mean we had sex, which never happened, but we made out a lot). When I told him what my boundaries were, he was surprised that I wanted him to wait until we were in the same state before I would consider having sex with him. Once we became physical it seemed like that was all he would think about.

    After the first meet up we’d still skype but our conversations started to dwindle (as in, we’d still sky every day, we just wouldn’t talk about things). He’d ask me to buy things that he felt would make my apartment more comfortable. When we’d talk about anything real, it’d be a conversation that I started. He’d ask me about how much I make, and try his best to convince me that where I was working wasn’t somewhere I wanted to stay, so that one day we’d be “closer” to each other.

    He started to do less things without me, he kept showing me off to his friends, and expecting me to do more things. Soon enough our words and thoughts stopped matching. When I wanted to just sit he wanted to make out, when I wanted to watch something, he’d fall asleep.

    I started to feel like I would have to be a mom in this relationship, but I also felt like I was a toy to him. It felt like he didn’t want to know about me anymore, he just wanted to make out with me. And when I wanted to learn more about him, he asked me why I had to know him to date him. It hurt when he said that, but I felt it was more because he was emotionally immature rather than he wanted to hurt me. Then I realized that that was the whole relationship.

    Because I was his friend before being his girlfriend I thought it would be prudent to wrote down all of my concerns about our relationship, that we spoke about (if you call “simply agreeing” with me talking about something) during the six months we were together, and I explained to him, again that they bothered me. I tried to encourage him to present feedback, but it was like trying to fetch water from a dry well. Later on I broke up with him, and it hurt… I felt awful because he didn’t understand why we broke up.

    In my mind I knew this was for the best, I felt that he was trying his hardest to mold to me so that he could keep me, but it wasn’t something that either of us could sustain. A major conflict though, that I believe emphasized the other conflicts, was that… I’m black… and he comes from a culture that generally detests black people, so over the period of the six months, I asked him, multiple times, to speak to his family about this, but didn’t. He told his parents about me, but he didn’t talk to them about it.

    This was the first real relationship either of us ever had. Both of us made mistakes, but as a whole I don’t think we made a good team with one another. It hurts so much because I don’t think I can be friends with him again. And I want so badly to help him through this time, but I don’t know how or I fear that if I do, it will send off the wrong signal.

    I’m writing this the day after I broke up with him… it still hurts, but writing this kind of softened the blow. If anyone has any words they could kindly grant me, please do so, it’d be much appreciated

    #153638

    anita
    Participant

    Dear Sleepy_Kiky:

    I hope you feel better soon.

    You wrote: “It felt like he didn’t want to know about me anymore, he just wanted to make out with me. And when I wanted to learn more about him, he asked me why I had to know him to date him.”- this is a major, unbridgeable difference in motivation for a relationship.

    Your motivation is to get to know him. His motivation is to make out with you exclusively, getting to know each other otherwise, not a motivation.

    You wrote: “I want so badly to help him through this time”- I don’t understand: help him with what? Is he going through a tough time (you didn’t mention that)?

    anita

     

    #153640

    Sleepy_Kiki
    Participant

    He didn’t understand why we broke up and I feel like he was even more hurt than I was when we broke up. So as a friend I kind of want to help him move passed this, but I don’t want to do anything wrong by doing that.

    #153642

    Sleepy_Kiki
    Participant

    He didn’t understand why we broke up and I feel like he was even more hurt than I was when we broke up. So as a friend I kind of want to help him move passed this, but I don’t want to do anything wrong by doing that.

    And I’m sorry for the misstype, I meant to say “And when I wanted to learn more about him, he asked me why did have to know him to date him.” not “And when I wanted to learn more about him, he asked me why I had to know him to date him.”

    (I wish I could erase the post above >.<)

    • This reply was modified 2 months ago by  Sleepy_Kiki.
    #153652

    anita
    Participant

    Dear Sleepy_Kiki:

    He didn’t understand why you broke up, you wrote. I am sure it is not for lack of you explaining it to him. You express yourself, on this thread very well, clearly, accurately. And so, you have the communication skills to explain it to him.

    You wrote in your original post: “I explained to him, again that they bothered me. I tried to encourage him to present feedback, but it was like trying to fetch water from a dry well.”

    In the beginning, “I’d ask him about himself, and what he wanted out of this relationship, his answers paralleled with mine so I thought we were okay”- what were his answers at that time? I am wondering if there was water initially (his ability and willingness to know and be known) in that well and it dried out? Or was it dry from the beginning?

    anita

     

    #153658

    Sleepy_Kiki
    Participant

    I think initially, since we were friends, he liked me so he thought he could mold into something for me. I told him that I wanted to travel at the beginning of the relationship, later on, before we broke up, he told me that he couldn’t stand long plane flights. Same goes for wanting to be together for a long time, he agreed that he wanted the same thing, but he didn’t want to tell his parents or anyone from his family about me. Other questions were along the lines of how he felt about kids, exploration, and arts and crafts and job stuff… Maybe I didn’t ask him enough questions in the beginning 🙁 I feel like I miss led him because I wanted to like him too…

    #153686

    anita
    Participant

    Dear Sleepy_Kiki:

    You wrote above: “he liked me so he thought he could mold into something for me”- or he just lied, for example he lied to you about being willing to travel where it involves long plane flights.

    There are a multiple topics in your posts. A few I don’t understand, like why he refused to make you tea and what you meant by “if I didn’t catch the ‘fault’ things seemed to spiral out of control.”

    Regarding your concern about his well-being, wanting to help him- you wrote: “I also felt like I was a toy to him. It felt like he didn’t want to know about me anymore”- I don’t think a toy can help the person playing with it. A toy is a passive thing, has no say. The one playing with the toy decides what to do, when and how. And if he didn’t want to know you more, doesn’t that mean that he has no interest in what you want to teach him/ help him with?

    anita

    #153694

    Sleepy_Kiki
    Participant

    You’re right… I just feel sad that he’s sad I guess… But how else does a break up work right?

    I just really wanted to like him I guess and that’s getting in the way of my logic. Maybe he did lie to me, a part of me just feels like he acted this way because he’s never been in a relationship before, and because he’s antisocial… But so am I…. I guess everyone’s just different :(…

    #153704

    anita
    Participant

    Dear Sleepy_Kiki:

    You wrote: “everyone’s just different”- get to know yourself and others as you interact with them. Be true to yourself in all your interactions with others. “To thine own self be true” first and foremost.

    And then, learn about the person you are interacting with: is that person honest, dishonest? Respectful or not? What does he value, what is important to him? What motivates him? Does he keep his word, is he consistent?  And so  on.

    Make your life a learning experience.

    anita

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