June 5, 2019 at 10:54 am #297451
I’ve been involved with this guy for nearly 2 years now and we’ve lived together for a majority of that time. When we started dating, things seemed to move really fast and he moved in just 2 months into the relationship because of issues with his old roommate. Over the next few months, things were going well but something seemed off and I couldn’t figure it out. To back up- in the beginning of our relationship we were watching a movie together in bed and I saw that he received a notification on his phone from a female and he turned the phone away from me to look it at. After that, I asked him if there was anything he was hiding. I specifically said “you’re not seeing anyone else are you?” He said no, so I let it go. As time went on I had a lingering feeling and kept seeing that he was in contact with this same person, so I asked about her and he said they were just friends from college and I had nothing to worry about. Things became more strange when he stopped showing interest in having sex with me, didn’t really want to go out on dates with me, he was either hanging out with his friends or staying in and not wanting to do anything. His communication skills were becoming worse- I often felt like I was talking to a wall. It also seemed like I cared more about his life/future than he did because he was just being a bum and I was the one pushing him to be a better version on himself. I told him what I was observing and he didn’t really seem to care.
I went out one night with a girlfriend of mine and another guy from my past was at the same place. Not sure how many drinks later- I ended up making a terrible decision and leaving with that guy and I cheated. I felt awful because I had never done something like that before and in my mind there was no excuse for it. I told the guy I could never see him again and went home super early. I sat my boyfriend down and told him what I did immediately. He was angry at me and made me feel awful. We still lived together so you can imagine the tension in the apartment. He told his friends and family what I did and they all shamed me. We broke up at that point and our lease was coming to end soon. Over time, we decided to try to work things out and he said he forgave me. But it didn’t feel like he did, I felt like his friends were looking at me like a monster and he made comments that really hurt me. On top of that, I was already hating myself. We decided to resign the lease either way because we wanted to work things out.
We got back together and things were OK until he went back to his old ways of basically not caring or trying. He was also upset when I shared my ideas of going back to school. He claimed I’d become “too busy” for him. So I told him I was tired of being the only one putting forth any effort and I decided to end things again. I then went on vacation without him and during my entire vacation he was texting and calling me saying how much he loves and needs me and he’ll do better. So when I came back, I decided to give it another shot. Just DAYS later, I was using his tablet (which is connected to his phone) and he kept getting notifications from the same person I asked him about before. I had never looked through a guy’s stuff before but something in my gut was telling me to check it out. So I did and found that person was sending him nudes. I was shocked and confused. I scrolled through their messages to way back to the beginning of our relationship only to find out that he had been seeing this other woman the entire time we were together. From day 1 of our relationship. I was so hurt and embarrassed because I came clean to him about the bad decision that I made 1 time and he told his people and made me feel like crap about myself for months. Yet he was lying, and sneaking around the ENTIRE TIME. I talked it out with my best friend who (without my permission) messaged the girl to inform her of the situation and she swore she had no idea he was in a relationship with me. She said that he said we were just roommates stuck in a lease. We broke up again.
After he begged and begged and realized I wasn’t budging we agreed to move on and see other people but we’d respect each other and not bring anyone into the apartment. A couple months later, I met someone new and he met a couple of new people. We became pretty nasty to each other and we’d bicker and fight constantly when we were both at the apartment. I snooped again (not my proudest moment) and found out that he had invited a girl back to our apartment one night that he thought I’d be gone. And on top of that- he spoke pretty nasty of me to this girl. I confronted him and he lied. At that point I was really done with him and I just wanted to break the lease and move out. Unfortunately I couldn’t afford it. So I started spending more time with the new guy and I started to really like him. He does everything I wished my “ex” would’ve done and I’m constantly in a state of happiness when I’m with him.
When my ex realized that I was getting serious about this guy and spending weekends away with him, he changed. He started being nicer, more attentive, randomly texting me at work saying he hopes I’m having a good day, bought me flowers, wanted to go out and do things together etc. I eventually caved. I didn’t agree to jump back into a relationship with him this time, I just wanted to see if this new version of him would continue. He blocked the women he had been seeing (so he says), and we went on dates that were pretty great and we started sleeping in the same bed together again every night. But I couldn’t stop thinking about the other guy. I felt bad but I distanced myself from the new guy for a few weeks while I watched my ex’s behavior. The new guy didn’t give up, he stilled tried to make contact. Also, he is very aware that I live with my ex. After a few weeks, my ex’s great gestures and changed behavior started to fade again and I just wasn’t feeling it. I vocalized it to him but it seemed like he got comfortable again. Like, “okay, I got her back, I don’t have to work anymore.” I started reengaging with the new guy and knew that my feelings for my ex just weren’t there anymore. I still care about him but I don’t want to be in a relationship with him. So I was honest and I told my ex, we’ve tried over and over again but this isn’t working, I’m interested in someone else, and we need to break up for good this time. Our lease is over in 2 months so I told him I want to be civil and I honestly would love to be his friend because he does have a fun personality. He told me that if I break up with him, he would turn his back and never chase me again. And I said okay, because that’s exactly what I wanted. He did the opposite and made it clear that he wasn’t going to just let me walk away. He told me he’s in love with me and realizes his mistakes, he apologizes constantly, wouldn’t stop texting me, cornered me every time I got home to “talk”, and even said multiple times that he wants to marry me. He actually said “will you marry me?” and I said no. He even said that he won’t allow me to go spend the weekend with the guy I’m seeing as long we are still living together! I don’t know what he meant by that but it sounded pretty crazy to me. And he says things like he can’t picture his future without me. He won’t accept that it’s over and he’s making me feel guilty. And I admit, I give into it sometimes but I know deep down it’s out of pity and I just want to keep the peace. I want to move on and see where things go with this new guy. I have 2 more months of this, I don’t know what to do. If I’m strict and tell my ex to really leave me alone, I’m worried this living situation will turn into a war zone.June 5, 2019 at 11:14 am #297523
I would rather live in my car than live two more months in that place.
It’s over. But he’s entering into this creepy dangerous stalker zone. I’m worried for you. Don’t try to minimize all this.
I would just stay with the new guy (or live in the car, I’m not even kidding) and have the police be there when you collect your things.
InkyJune 5, 2019 at 12:41 pm #297545
I would like to understand better, therefore I ask:
1. You wrote, “I honestly would love to be his friend because he does have a fun personality”- but he lied to you and cheated on you from day one of your relationship with you. Don’t you value honesty and loyalty in a person over a “fun personality” when considering friendship?
2. You wrote, “He won’t accept that it’s over and he’s making me feel guilty. And I admit, I give into it sometimes but I know deep down it’s out of pity and I just want to keep the peace?-
– will you elaborate on the nature of these three separate items regarding this man: your guilt, pity and wanting to keep the peace with him?
anitaJune 5, 2019 at 4:39 pm #297563
Your response really made me reflect, so thank you. You are right, I do value honesty and loyalty over the “fun personality.” The issue is the emotions involved. He says all of these things that make me feel guilty for wanting to break up. For example, if I bring up that he cheated the entire time, his response is that I cheated as well and “cheating is cheating.” He dismisses that I owned up to what I did and have always been 100% honest with him. He says we were both wrong and he was able to forgive me, so he doesn’t understand why I can’t let it go. He also makes me feel guilty when he says “I wonder if you ever really loved me.” He says that when two people “love” each other, they work through the hard times and fight for the relationship. And if I did love him, there’s no way I could move on so “fast.” He makes it seem like I’m the one who did all the heart breaking even though I know that’s not true. His words are very convincing. He makes me feel sorry for him. Especially when he talks about how I’m the only person he’s ever dated that cared so much about his future and saw potential in him. That’s because throughout our relationship I’ve begged him to get his act together, find a job that actually uses his degree, pays well, and that he enjoys. He hates his current job and complains but has never done anything to change it. I don’t see myself with someone who doesn’t have ambition, but he swears if I stay with him he’ll make those changes. He says he has nothing with me. He also brings up how close he is with my family, which also makes me feel bad. I have seen this man literally cry and tell me how much he needs me. He’s been acting very depressed and down on himself ever since I told him I was done. So I do feel guilty for wanting to end things because it’s hard to see someone I live with that I- for whatever reason- genuinely care about, have a depressed demeanor because of a decision I’m making. That’s also where the pity comes in.
By “keep the peace” I mean I don’t want to live in a stressful environment. Like I said, when we both started seeing other people, we were constantly arguing and fighting. He gets very jealous so I know it’ll be a constant battle for the next two months if I don’t attempt to at least be friends with him. He’s also made threats like if he ever sees me and the new guy together, all hell will break loose. He’s asked me if he can have the guy’s information to have a “man to man” conversation, and basically tell him to leave me alone. So now I feel the need to hide who I’m seeing from the world just to avoid conflict. I don’t want any of that. My work life is stressful enough, last thing I need to come home just to feel more stressed.
Thoughts?June 5, 2019 at 6:07 pm #297569
My thoughts are that he is a dishonest man and he will say anything that will get him what he wants, say, mind you, not do. He says things: “cheating is cheating”- meaning that a one time cheating event is the same as months of cheating, it is not true, it is not the same and you were not “both wrong” in the same way. He dismisses that you owned up to that one time event- but you did own up to it, didn’t you? So he dismisses what is not convenient for him to acknowledge. He says “I wonder if you ever really loved me”- I wonder if he ever loved you for having cheated on you repeatedly while living with you and I know for sure that he is not loving you when he guilt trips you.
“His words are very convincing”, you wrote. Not to me.
I understand that he hates his job and that he didn’t look for another, that he is depressed and lacks ambition- maybe the two of you can work together as a team to make things better regarding these things. But you cannot work together as a team with a man who lies to you, a man who will say anything no matter how untrue, not matter it hurts you, just to get him what he wants.
“he swears if I stay with him he’ll make those changes”- did he say how long you need to stay with him before he makes the changes, and what changes these will be, maybe set a time table?
It is so easy to say this sentence: if you stay with me I will change! A few seconds. Easy.
And then he threatens you that “if he ever sees me and the new guy together, all hell will break loose”-
– by the way, where in all this is that “fun personality”?
June 8, 2019 at 7:23 am #297971
- This reply was modified 1 week, 6 days ago by anita.
I agree with both Anita and Inky’s comments.
He’s not going to ever change, is he? He’s only capable of sustaining the effort for a very short time, and once he has you back in thrall to him, he doesn’t need to make the effort any more. He’s also a hypocrite – it’s nothing of note for him to long term cheat on you, but a one night stand on your part is a major transgression! And I truly believe that you wouldn’t have had that one night stand if you hadn’t been feeling so neglected and starved of affection.
There’s only one question you have to ask yourself here: Do you want this to be the story of your life? There are a lot of women out there who believe the promises and the lies and hope, and hope, and carry on hoping… that the person manipulating them like this will change. Only if the person doing the manipulation can see that THEY have a problem, and get professional help to overcome what is basically a personality fault, they will never change.
Ace manipulators do what works for them. Your manipulator promises this, then that, and each time it happens, you get a little bit wiser to the fact that it’s not going to happen, the circle continues, and so the manipulator has to up the game every time you get to the same point – which he did by asking you to marry him. Each time you get a bit wiser to his games, he ups the game and throws another titbit to you to give you hope that he is going to change.
He told me that if I break up with him, he would turn his back and never chase me again. And I said okay, because that’s exactly what I wanted. He did the opposite and made it clear that he wasn’t going to just let me walk away.
So he says one thing and then does another. If one threat doesn’t work, he tries another. And this will continue as long as you let him do it.
Get out of there. This man doesn’t love you.
best wishes for your happiness with the new bf. If you have to wait two months before you can be free of the lease on the property, and this man’s threats, broken promises and all the rest of it, just bide your time, be silent, make your plans and move out as soon as it’s possible.June 11, 2019 at 11:02 am #298521
Thank you Inky, Anita, and JayJay. You all make super valid points and are saying everything I’ve been saying in my head lately. The question isn’t whether or not I want to stay and give my ex another shot. I already know that I don’t believe when he says he will change, because he hasn’t done anything to back it up. And I a certain that I do not want to be in a relationship with him. I feel stuck. I broke up with him already and made sure it was super clear but he won’t let go. He won’t just accept that it’s over and let me move on. If we didn’t live together I could easily block his number and block him on social media. But I have to see his face nearly every day and live in the same space with him for another two months. Like I said, I am seeing someone new but it’s incredibly difficult to put all of my energy towards that when I have my ex constantly down my throat about “fixing our relationship”. If he would just move on, life would be so much simpler.
How can I get him to understand that I’m really done this time without making the living situation more complicated?June 11, 2019 at 11:39 am #298537
Since you live with him and see him everyday then that’s a tough situation. It’s time to set strict boundaries. Read him the riot act about not talking to you. Make it explicit, direct and forceful. Tell him you won’t respond if he tries.
Whenever you two are in the same room/space then you leave. Follow up by not responding to him when he talks to you. Best to turn your back if he persists and walk away. Even if you need to temporarily go into your bedroom and shut the door then do that. Be consistent and persistent in doing this until he stops being constantly down your throat.
MarkJune 11, 2019 at 12:01 pm #298545
Thanks Mark! I will definitely try that. I think setting boundaries with him will be tough but if I do what you’ve advised, hopefully it works out and my last 2 months here will go by quickly! Thanks, again!June 11, 2019 at 12:08 pm #298547
You are welcome. My suggestion is that you tell your current roommate that if he doesn’t start acting like a polite roommate and nothing else, then you will be moving out. When he continues to harass you, move out. I understand that there are two months remaining on your lease, but better lose some money (finding another place for these two months) than living in “this living situation (that may) turn into a war zone”, a quote from your original post.
anitaJune 12, 2019 at 7:23 am #298635
I agree with Anita above. These two months might turn out to be the longest of your life! I know you feel stuck, but if he won’t stick to the new rules for the next two months, he might wear you down so much you are tempted to give in for the sake of peace. I know I have done that in past relationships. And then what – a new lease, another bind, another broken promise or ten… things ok for a while.. then back onto the same old treadmill. Please don’t do that! If he can’t respect your wishes, then move out anyway. If I was in your position, I think I would do that sooner, rather than later.
Best wishes for your future happiness.