August 2, 2013 at 1:43 pm #39623
This is long, but feel that I need to provide as much as possible.
On March 16, 2011 I ended a 14 year marriage and was probably the happiest I had been in a very long time. It had taken me 4 years to get up the courage to end it. I was so afraid of being alone. I didn’t have a lot of boyfriends growing up and really didn’t consider myself attractive at all. For a couple months after the divorce I started talking to an old friend whom I hadn’t seen or talked to for at least 25 years. He confided in me that his marriage was also ending. We found that we enjoyed talking to each other and after he was officially divorced we went out a couple of times. He was very serious about us. Said I was the one and that he was finally happy for the first time in a long time. And so was I. He was the COMPLETE opposite of my ex-husband. He was outgoing, funny, liked to go out and have fun, wild, and showed me attention. I was over the moon. We fell in love and had talked about future plans. We went on trips together (which he mostly paid for) and had a lot of fun times with friends. Within about 6 months though he started becoming distant and said that it was just a lot of stuff going on with his business and he was stressed. I gave him space (seemed I was doing that a lot). After a couple of months he did a 360 and was the person I fell in love with….and I had hope that we were going to be OK. I backed off and didn’t ask questions, didn’t say what was bothering me for fear that it would drive him away. On Valentine’s Day he sent me 2 dozen roses with a note that said “you are the love of my live and I can’t wait to spend it with you”…. a week later he broke up. I was confused and devastated. His reasoning was that he couldn’t do a relationship right now and needed to focus on his work and his daughter. For a month I was a mess. Every day did get better yes…but the pain was still lingering. I tried to let him go and come to accept he was gone. I had decided that I couldn’t be friends because it was too painful. I started dating someone after about a month and it was not the right person. He also started dating…and I was livid mad. How could he say he didn’t want a relationship and now he’s seeing someone. After 2 1/2 months he sent me a text message saying he was very sorry for being so selfish and an asshole. I replied and we talked for most of the day over text and the phone because he was out of town on business. He asked if we could get back together. I was reluctant because I was still hurt but I didn’t listen to my reasonings (or my friends) and we started seeing each other again. I had made it known what I expected and wanted in this relationship. And he made all the promises and said all the right things. This time he asked me to move in with him. Wanted to wait for a couple of months in order to prepare his daughter for me being around (she was 15 at the time). I was so happy again that I didn’t have to be out there dating and dealing with all of that. Things were really good for the first 2 to 3 months and then he started reverting back to how he was before. Distant, not talking, lack of affection, treating me like I wasn’t important, always acting like he was the one that mattered….the list goes on. Yet I didn’t speak up and say anything because I was fearful he would just say “if you don’t like it then just leave”. So I held all my feelings inside. Which made my days constant madness with all the overthinking and analyzing what to do. He had a yo-yo affect going on. For a month he’d be like this and then he’d apologize and say that he was sorry and to hang in there with him…that he loved me and he was trying. Then go right back to wanting space and making me feel like he really didn’t want me around. I always felt like I was tagging along when we were together. Bringing up the discussion about moving in together was up to him and on a couple of occasions even said lets plan it….then of course a couple weeks later he’d claim his daughter wasn’t ready for it. Even though we got along great. He is a very selfish person, and I knew that going in to this again. I thought he loved me enough to want it to work. For the past 2 1/2 months things had been really tense between us. It was to the point that we didn’t see each other for a week and may do something once during a weekend if he didn’t have his daughter. I was so frustrated but still holding on to hope. We went to Florida for a family trip…and I had never felt so alone on a vacation as I did this time. We got back on a Saturday evening. We didn’t see each other Sunday or Monday (I was trying to give him space since we had just spent a week together) and on Tuesday afternoon he called me at work and said he didn’t think it was going to work out between us. I asked why. He said he has a good time hanging out with me and doing things but his excuses were that we were going in two different directions with our lives, that we didn’t have much in common, and that I was “different” because I’ve never had children and I couldn’t relate to him and what he needed to do for his daughter. It was all such crap! He wasn’t going to discuss anything because he had made a decision and that was the end of it. I asked questions and he kept getting mad. He asked me to get what things I had at his house by the end of the day. Said he hoped we could remain friends….I said that I couldn’t right now because I was in love with him and had hoped for a future. And now I don’t have that. I went over to his house that afternoon and got all of my stuff. He wasn’t even there and the only living thing I was able to say goodbye to was his dog…whom I loved dearly. I’m constantly in a state of asking all the “what if’s” right now. But I logically know that no matter what I did or didn’t do it wouldn’t have changed the fact that he doesn’t want a serious relationship and most likely never will. I keep thinking he will start seeing someone soon and want to change for them. I am heartbroken. I miss him everyday (even with all the crap I put up with) and want to know if he misses me too. I’m writing in journals so much to get the thoughts out so I can think it out and calm my mind. I understand this is part of the healing process and I have to go thru it in order to move forward. But dealing with the fact he is no longer in my life is so hard. Because I didn’t get to see him and talk about it…I feel like I didn’t really get to say goodbye and I can’t have closure. Thank you for reading this…if you made it all the way to the end….thank you.
August 2, 2013 at 2:49 pm #39642AmyParticipant
- This topic was modified 9 years ago by Kim.
Hi Kim, it sounds like you’ve been thru the ringer. (hugs)
I can relate so much with your story. My soon to be ex husband acts the same way. Warm and affectionate one day and cold the next, like I married two people and only one of them can stand to have me around. Ever see the movie The Illusionist?
I don’t have any advice. I wish I did so I could follow it too.
Mostly, I just needed to let you know that you are not alone.
I feel your pain.
Hang in there. Take the time to grieve.
Embrace the grief for a while but don’t linger there too long.
It’s just pain and ash.August 2, 2013 at 4:30 pm #39649EParticipant
Kim…..Hi……I read 3/4 of your story and stopped because I can kind of predict what the rest will say. Been there done that a lot. I am one to say that u really need to stop and take a breath. Look I have been there many times since my first divorce…..I married when I was 22 and had my first born….relationship didn’t work out after ten yrs of being married and two of dating….I was devastated when I divorced because my ex had beat me, cheated on me and had taken every part of my self esteem. I believed in “till death do us part” and dint want to be another statistic so I stayed for as long as I could. During the court proceedings I ran into my bf from high school…he too was divorcing. We started hanging out and I always saw him in a platonic way in school so to hang around was awesome. Unfortunately time, age, and maturity played a big role and I fell in love with him. We married five months after and it was great till the fourth and fifth year of marriage… Same issues arouse and I wasn’t going to tolerate it…he ended up cheating and getting girl pregnant while I was pregnant too…yeah, I know. He came back after affair and man I regret it to this day. I lost so much weight and was severely suicidal, always checking his phone, etc….I was going insane. One day he loved me next day 360! My problem was letting go of the past and it still is every time I meet someone….it’s like if I keep accepting the love I think I deserve. Same types of men….looks, athleticism, height, domineering, and controlling..I never healed from my first marriage. Big Mistake…after seventeen yrs I recently met a man at work and truly fell in love with him…we got engaged and recently as I saw his true colors, I returned engagement ring and somehow things went to shit after that and he broke up w me and said when he was done he was done, but it was fun. Yeah, I know. I was devastated…he hasn’t called for almost two months and I think he may already be in a relationship. Now I can say that I’m ok w that because he is no longer my problem and if he didn’t truly care enough…..he did me a favor.
Why an I telling you all this when this is about your struggles, right? Well, patterns….I have learned through many people who post on this website and strongly agree that when we don’t deal with our own issues, insecurities, self esteem, and love for ourselves, that’s the love that people will convey and reciprocate. There’s nothing wrong with you but you are trying to find something and someone that will fill the void you have with yourself. Do you accept you? Do you love you? Can you be alone? Can you accept that being alone until you heal from the past is a good thing? I can’t tell you the similarities that a lot of us have on this site. The self esteem issues being number one and the lack of love toward ourselves. I know it feels good to have someone in your life that cares for you, compliments you, and tells you they love you, but those are just words…..anyone can do that in the mirror…ACTIONS are what matter. Don’t settle for anything less. You are worth so much more than you give yourself credit for. I can’t say I’m a 100% the one to give advice but really, take some time to think, plan, write, and be whole again…journaling helps…when you read back what you write you’ll be amazed at how things look when you are on the other side looking in. Much love e.August 2, 2013 at 5:00 pm #39653MattParticipant
I’m sorry for the painful experiences you’re experiencing, and I am impressed with the length and breadth of your post! You certainly captured a ton of information in those few lines. A few things came to heart as I read your post (and I did read the whole of it, you’re welcome. :))
It sounds to me like you’ve been being used as a bandage for his lonesomeness, where perhaps he calls on you when he’s not distracted from his feeling of being alone. Perhaps though, it would be better to ask yourself “why did I go back so many times?” Perhaps he is a bandage for your loneliness too? Especially with the conditions of your meeting just after divorce, perhaps you need to take some time away so you can heal from the way you get lost in the “we”ness of a relationship.
Do you know who Kim is? What do you do to self-nurture? Are you a careful caretaker of Kim’s heart? Do you burn the journal pages or reread them?
MattAugust 3, 2013 at 8:23 am #39676
Thank you for the nice replies. Everything that was said was all true. I have had low self esteem my whole life. That’s why I settled for the man I married…afraid of being alone. I live in Illinois about 30 mins from St. Louis but I’m scared to drive over into Missouri. Afraid of getting lost (even though I have a GPS) and having that anxious feeling. I don’t have a lot of friends that I hang out with. And the ones I have have their own families and lives. I live in the past so much that it’s hard to plan a future because I’m always thinking about what I did wrong. I’ve been at the same job for 16 years and for the last 5 it has been really slow. So much that I really only work about 3 hours of a 40 hour workweek. So it gives me too much time to sit and think and look on FB. When we were together I was always wondering if he was cheating so I’d try to figure stuff out by facebook. Even though my job is not challenging and doesn’t pay enough, I haven’t had the guts to get out and find a different job because it’s all I’ve known and I don’t like change. Financially I’ve been struggling for the past 3 years so that doesn’t help matters either. I’ve started back to school to change careers but of course am afraid of having to find another job even though I know it’s for the best….so afraid of making the wrong decision because I don’t have anyone to fall back on for support.
Right now I wake up every day with that emptiness and lonely feeling inside me. I don’t know what my purpose is. I don’t have children…and it has been within the last 2 years that I am regretting that decision. I am going to be 40 next month and while it may be OK with other women to start a family at this age, it isn’t right for me. So I have to live with that. It does make me different. While everyone is going thru their lives focused on their kids and their lives I am sitting here with myself. And I obviously don’t like myself very much. When we were together I focused on us and what we were going to do. It filled my days and nights and kept me occupied…even though it was still making me unhappy, I still had that to hold on to. Now he’s gone and I feel like I have nothing to grab on to for that focus. I miss him every day and with all the bad I still want him back. That makes me a weak person. I’ve seen a counselor for the last couple of years off and on. Sometimes it helps, sometimes it doesn’t. I want to know that what I’m feeling with this everyday sadness and hurt is normal. It’s only been a little over a week…so I feel like I should be granted this grieving time. I don’t want to get stuck in this though. I don’t want to end up like my mom who never got over the death of my dad 26 years ago and she is lonely and miserable. I don’t like my life…and that is the root of the problem but I don’t have the courage to fix it. I’ve been reading a book by Susan Piver called “The Wisdom of a Broken Heart”. Read it the first time he broke up and now reading it again. I’ve tried doing the meditation and I can’t quiet my mind. It doesn’t seem to help. Everything reminds me of us. The Florida trip we just got back from is constantly in my mind…what did I do wrong? He said he had hoped getting away would help us. But he didn’t do anything to let it work. All the things I’m running through my mind of what I should have done and should have said drive me to exhaustion. I miss him and I don’t know how to stop missing him.August 3, 2013 at 9:31 am #39682EParticipant
If you need to talk please write me…our stories are so similar and I too have a few close friends..email@example.comAugust 3, 2013 at 9:57 am #39684GinaParticipant
There is a book called facing love addiction ny Pia Mellody I read not long ago…it describes the relationships between love addicts and love avoidants and the cycles they go through. Your story really brought the book back to my mind. Losing someone you love soo deeply hurts like crazy and it can make you feel like life is over because it will never be as colourful again, it will never be as exciting…and I cant tell you that it will because I am just finding out myself right now, but the only thing I have found helps me make peace with my situation is remembdering that no matter how great it feels to be with him and how much I really really do love him, I need to love myself more…you don’t need someone who will draw you in and push you away, it is painful, I know. I know just how painful..but you have to think of yourself as someone outside of you who you really love and you must protect at all costs, and you have to protect you from the turmoil he has and can put her through.
Best of luck, you are not alone!
GinaAugust 6, 2013 at 8:06 am #39836
Thank you Gina for the book idea. I am going to see if they have it at my local library. This is probably the hardest thing I have ever gone through in my life and I just want to get to the other side where there is light rather than dark.August 11, 2013 at 6:30 am #40179DeeParticipant
Hi Kim – I am not anywhere close to having been married, but I have been in three serious relationships, two of which has ended (one of which might be ending?? I’m here for advice too, my page is ‘relationship break?’).
All I can say is that some of the best advice I have been given is that often there is not going to be any closure. (From my dad, who did go through a divorce). We somehow think if we understand all the things that went wrong and why the other person did what they did then it will help us move on. But it really doesn’t. Just because we understand why something happen, is that realistically going to make it any easier for us to accept it? From reading this, it just seems very clear to me that this guy is not ready to commit to a real relationship. He’s got a daughter to worry about and probably his own feelings to work through from his divorce. If he’s not ready to be serious, then he’s not ready.
You can give yourself the closure you need. What is he going to give you, more excuses? Even if he gave you an honest explanation of what he had felt, it wouldn’t change where you guys are right now.
Give yourself the closure you need and tell yourself that this guy is not ready for me, he is not ready for the love I am willing to commit and give. And if he’s not ready, then he’s not the right person for me, and I can and will find someone who is.
I can tell just from what you have written here that you are a strong person who cares deeply about the people in her life… don’t despair. =] Anyone would be lucky to have you.August 11, 2013 at 7:20 am #40181
Oh my gosh…I could have written this myself! wow… I came out of a 15 yr emotionally abusive marriage…and feel in the love with “the one.” “The new guy” was amazing…treated me so beautifully, took me on trips, our kids loved each other! 2 weeks ago he decided he needed “space”. WTF is space???? He was not ready to commit to what I wanted. OMG…talk about worlds crashing down. I am still devastated. We exchanged all of our things last week…have not spoken on the phone. My kids are so freaking sad about this too…they were very attached to him. So now what? I am trying to heal…
Looking back, I saw the red flags…I felt him pulling away. I knew something was wrong but I was to afraid to face it. I did not want to be alone.
So now the soul searching has begun. I am reading “A return to Love” by Marianne Williamson…it’s life changing. Also, her podcasts (which are free! on iTunes) are so healing to listen to. I am re-connecting with God and spirit (which I lost in that relationship…I gave my boyfriend the power). I am learning to love myself first…and learning to trust in something “bigger” than me. Don’t get me wrong…this is so very hard. I have gone 2 days without crying…but the ache is still there for sure. But the one thought that is carrying me is: “there is something better for me out there.” And there must be something better for you too.
My advice…read lots of good healing books. Learn to love YOU first! Meditate. Connect with your spirit, or God or Buddah, or whatever works for you. Cry. Then tell the universe to take your pain and help you heal.
Sending you much love and light as you heal!
xoxoAugust 11, 2013 at 7:22 am #40182
Oh and I signed up for Oprah’s and Deepak’s 21 day meditation series on miraculous relationships…it’s amazing!August 12, 2013 at 6:27 am #40254
Dee and Carrie, thank you so much for your advice. Dee, many of my friends have said that the commitment thing wasn’t really the only issue and to stop focusing on it. The lack of respect he had for me in general is a big issue that probably wasn’t going to change. My hangup is that he kept going back and forth about what he wanted. I had looked forward to that future with him. It’s been 3 weeks since the break up and there are so many things I wish I would’ve done. Like say that I didn’t want to talk about this over the phone and ask that we please meet to talk about it. Instead I gave in to what HE wanted (just like always) and had a very brief conversation over the phone…so I really didn’t get to ask or say everything I wanted. But I know I can’t go back and change that. I still wake up every day with the empty feeling inside me and even with knowing how miserable I was the last several months together I still think that there is nobody out there that will be able to replace him. And the idea of having to date at 40 is very depressing to me.
I was wondering if you two would mind exchanging emails with me. My friends have heard enough and I don’t feel I can confide in them anymore. Mine is firstname.lastname@example.org. If not, I understand.August 12, 2013 at 6:48 am #40255
Hi Kim…sent you an email…xo