March 20, 2016 at 4:24 pm #99596
A little bit of background about myself to make things clear. I am a 31 year old guy who always believed and longed for a relationship since teenage. When I met my ex, 2.5 years ago, I thought she was the one and believed we were perfect for each other. I ignored all the red flags and gave importance to her needs and wants before mine. I thought by being in relationship will give me bullet proof happiness. And then when honeymoon period was over and there was some work required in relationship, she dumped me ( 8 weeks ago), saying that ‘ we aren’t compatible’ and ‘its not you its me’ and ‘ we are living like roommates’ etc few other reasons which basically pointed that she got bored with me and found someone more exciting.
Here’s my questions. After reading and hearing about other people’ stories, if being with someone for a long time (whether 2 years or 25 years), will cause things like ‘lost the spark’ or ‘ we live like roommates’ then is the concept of ‘relationship’ is flawed in its nature?
If most people are ready to break or run away from their marriage or relationship once things become mundane and as soon as they find a better replacement just to chase that spark again, why people like me bother to be with anyone again or believe what they say?
Isn’t a relationship becomes more of a companionship when the honeymoon period is over? If yes, then I am assuming alot of people in this world have no idea what relationship is.March 20, 2016 at 7:40 pm #99624
The very meaning of a relationship between two people is dependent on who the two people are. When you consider a relationship with a particular woman, pay attention to who the woman is. The nature of the relationship is going to be 50% about who she is. Learn over time who she is: does she chase sparks? What is her relationship history? What are her current relationships with her family and friends like? Does she speak the truth or does she lie sometimes? Does she walk her talk and talk her walk?
Is she trustworthy?
The other 50% of the relationship is about who you are.
anitaMarch 20, 2016 at 10:48 pm #99662
Thanks for the answer. I did ask those question and somehow, I did ignore some of the facts in front of me at that time. Why did I ignore? Because I was led to believe that she was, what I had been looking for. Let’s just say Manipulation at its best.
However, it was also my self responsibility to see the facts that I didn’t. And here I am grieving about something that was partly due to my fault.
Anyway, my thinking about ‘relationship after the spark’ is companionship. However, I see people giving up their marriages and years old relationship to chase the spark. Since I know I am not that type of person who chases spark, should I just not bothered to be in relationship ever again? Apparently, that what rest of the world is doing.
Brav3March 21, 2016 at 2:30 am #99664
Last statistic I heard, and that was a long time ago, was that 50% of marriages end in divorce (in the U.S., I think). Only 50% get divorced, but many more are in unhappy marriages. And it makes sense that a much higher percentage of romantic relationships end in separation. So I think you are right about your loss of faith in relationships. Chances that a relationship will last forever more are against you, statistically speaking.
All you can do is reduce the statistical chances of failure by learning who the woman is from the very beginning, opening your eyes and keeping them open, paying attention, communicating honestly, asking questions, listening to answers, on and on..not like an interrogator, of course, but as someone genuinely interested in getting to know a particular woman. Get curious.
And then, of all the women you meet, you only have to find one woman, only one who is likely to make the relationship of the quality and longevity you need it to be.
anitaMarch 21, 2016 at 6:25 am #99680
I can relate to your situation. It is hard to keep a relationship alive and healthy in a long term way. Often I feel it is like trying to catch a star. I am compelled to keep at it but it doesn’t happen. And when I look at the lives of my close friends, I often believe they are unhappy in their long term relationships. Or they are not in long term relationships. It does seem like many people run away at the first problems instead of sticking around and working through them. And in an intimate relationship after some time all your personal demons rise to the surface. You can’t hide parts of yourself. You have to deal with all your own inner baggage and the baggage of your partner as well. And it becomes hard to tell which problem starts with whom, and it is easier to blame the other person than to look inwards.
31 is young and you should not give up. I haven’t given up.
Lately I have been reflecting on the concept of loving someone and letting them be free, which is hard for me to do. Because loving someone involves opening up and being vulnerable. And I have the tendency to want some control of the other person to ensure I don’t get hurt by them. But control is not an atmosphere where love can grow and where a person can flourish. But it is hard to love someone when they do things you think are wrong and upsetting to you. Because what your partner does effects you since you are close and open to them. Even more so if you live together, are married and have children. So I struggle with this concept and I have begun to think that my ability to have a deep and meaningful love is directly related to my ability to be unattached to my partner. To love and accept him even when times are rough, which takes a lot of inner strength.
And I think one of the roughest times is when you feel the spark has died in your relationship and there is no passion or desire. If this happens is there a way to get it back? Is there a way to keep the flame alive? It is very painful to feel rejected in this way and very tricky to solve this problem.March 21, 2016 at 6:40 am #99683
The honeymoon period is short and sweet in every relationship. If your ex said she felt like you were just roommates, I think there was some underlying problem that caused her to feel this way. Maybe the two of you were not really compatible. Maybe you did not have what it takes together to build a long and lasting love. In this case it is better for you that she has gone. Or maybe her unhappiness was related to a personal problem in her own life that she needed to address. Or maybe here was a dynamic in the way the two of you interacted that caused her unhappiness.
I guess you will never know the answer because she did not stick around to try to work this out. But I am sure this is very painful for you and I am sorry you are going through this.March 21, 2016 at 12:31 pm #99720
Thanks for sharing your ideas. You said “Lately I have been reflecting on the concept of loving someone and letting them be free, which is hard for me to do”. My ex manipulated me by using this, let them be free. She used to say things like this and then do things like flirting with other guys etc. when she was meant to be in a committed relationship. She took advantage of my vulnerabilities and distorted my perception about this world in terms of right and wrong. It was a miserable time.
And now, she is gone but she hasn’t gone fully. She works at the same place I do. Sometimes I see her laughing and happy as if nothing has happened. As if I had no value in her life. This is the woman I once wanted to marry and have kids.
The most bothering part is I am the one who gave everything to relationship, I am the one who was genuine in love and I am the one who is suffering now, going to counselor, feeling grief, loss and many other things. Whereas, she is cruising with her life.
Nobody deserves this. It is unfair and perhaps there is no god or universe.March 21, 2016 at 12:43 pm #99722
I had the worst 6 weeks of my life. I am definitely not thinking to get back into relationship again.
Although, if I ever did, I will certainly not ignore the facts and red flags. I will not let my feeling delude my gut feelings and my rational thinking.
I let this happen to me by not taking the self responsibility and walking away. There are things I should have said and I didn’t. I was led to believe something that wasn’t true and I took the bait. For weeks I couldn’t understand how can I person change overnight and fully switch off towards you after living 2.5 years under same roof and sharing same bed. She didn’t shed a single tear or displayed any sign off grief of losing something significant, whereas I cried my life out there.
After talking to my counselor, I realized she manipulated me for a long time. There is term they use for that as well. Intermittent reinforcement. I cared for her and she walked all over me.March 21, 2016 at 1:34 pm #99730
What I see everywhere I look is people seeing what they want or need to see and not what is. The Buddhist principle of being awake and aware is to look at reality for what it is, the bare minimum of what is, without distorted perceptions, assumptions, wishful thinking, emotional reasoning etc. When Buddha was asked: “Are you god?” the story goes, he said: “no, I am awake”- I think those were the words. i don’t believe in god, in justice- evidence of injustice is everywhere, including in your story, in your heartbreak! All we can do as humans, is see What Is, be awake and aware. Learn to be awake and aware.
Please post again and I do hope the pain will lessen, awareness will increase and over time… well, over time.
anitaMarch 21, 2016 at 4:09 pm #99755
I have been reading about Buddha and started practicing meditation. It is the only the thing that helped me since break up. I am also working on learning to live with difficult emotions, especially anger, grief and loneliness.
I have been saying to myself now that this was meant to happen to awake me up from the dream world. The pain persists and sometimes the rollercoaster of emotions take me for ride. But I am starting to accept it now.
However, forgiveness is really difficult. I know its important but I think I am not ready for it yet.March 21, 2016 at 6:17 pm #99761
Accepting emotions means not trying to get rid of them, but letting them be. Lots of people rush to forgive as in trying to get rid of the anger, not wanting to feel the anger. But this is not a good idea. Let your anger be for as long as it will be.
One way I was taught to endure strong emotions is to pay attention (a form of meditation) how they feel in the body, as in tight chest, a choked feeling in the throat, a heat flash, a cold feeling and focus my attention on the sensation. As you pay attention, you will notice that the sensation does not stay the same: the tightness weakens, the heat evaporates, etc.
There are many ways to let the emotions be and endure them. Once you build the confidence that you can endure these emotions, that they do not kill you or even make you sick, they just don’t feel good, it becomes… not so bad. Not as bad as it seemed before.
Please post again and again…
anitaMarch 21, 2016 at 7:35 pm #99768
That’s a great way to look at forgiveness. I can make room for forgiveness only once the anger is settled. I think my anger will stay for a while…
I have been reading Tara Brach’s book on RAIN technique. Very similar to what you described about feeling sensations in my body. The problem is sometimes I try hard and still not able to find any feelings in the body. Sometimes, its too hard to follow RAIN because of emotional charge ( She is laughing and happy at work as if I had no value in her life). Although, What I don’t do anymore now is stop my tears. I let it be and say sometimes I accept. Its a work in progress.
My whole life was about striving for success, to get results. However, now I realised that the results aren’t in my hand. There are things that I can’t do anything about. I am just learning to accept and letting it go now. Again, easier said than done.
Brav3March 21, 2016 at 8:20 pm #99773
It is okay if you don’t find the sensation in your body. If you do, fine, if you don’t, that’s fine too. This attention to the body takes developing as most people are not in the habit of being attentive to their bodies (I wasn’t). So it takes time. If you notice something at any time, a tightness, that’s good enough: stay with it and pay attention to how it changes.
It could help if you do a few simple yoga like stretches, that helps getting in touch with sensations in the body.
I am not familiar with RAIN. The emotional charge you mentioned, I am not sure I understand…
anitaMarch 21, 2016 at 9:04 pm #99787
I went to a meditation retreat a little while ago and the teacher said that emotions are like the clouds in a blue sky. You are the blue sky and the clouds just pass through. You are not your emotions. And this helped me to see that even though emotions may feel overwhelming at times that there is still part of me that is stable and separate. And every emotion will pass. Even a terrible thunderstorm will pass by. It make take a few months but you will feel better and one day you will be completely over your ex girlfriend. This suffering will not last.
It is really good that you are taking the time to experience your emotions now. This is the path to healing and it takes a lot of strength to face these painful emotions. But you will be better off for going through this. You will be stronger and wiser in your future relationships.
I know it must be really hard since you have to see her at work. It would probably be easier if you could erase her from your daily life.
Even though your ex may appear happy and carefree I suspect she is hurting a lot too. I can’t imagine anyone would leave a long relationship and not feel pain and hurt over the break up. She may just be hiding it.
About freedom and jealousy, I know that no one is completely free and in a relationship there are certain commitments that limit freedom of course. I am struggling with my own jealousy in my relationship right now. So writing to you maybe helps me to sort out my own thoughts. I guess what I mean is that I need to trust my partner to honor his commitments and respect our relationship. He has to be free to commit to the relationship or not. If I act out of my jealousy and try to control him or monitor him this will not work. And it will lead him to feel resentful and stifled. Jealousy is such an ugly emotion and it is hard for me to accept it within myself. And I struggle to handle it in the best way possible. I don’t want to nurture my own jealousy or to cause unhappiness. But it is really hard to do.
I recently saw a great episode of Louis CK’s show. Louis was contemplating ending his relationship because his girlfriend was going to leave town in a little while and he was afraid of getting hurt. So he thought maybe he should dump her before he got too involved and got hurt. And this old man told him that he was being stupid. That having a broken heart is actually a good thing because a broken heart shows that you loved someone. The old man said that he hasn’t had his heart broken in thirty years and what wouldn’t he give to have his heart broken again.
So right now you are just paying the price for having loved someone and love is a good and valuable thing.March 21, 2016 at 9:52 pm #99788
Tara Brach explains this in her book True Refuge.
R – Recognize your feelings/ emotins
A- Allow them to be, don’t resist.
I – Investigate with kindness’ in your body.
N – Non identification with thoughts.
I am doing few sports at the moment so yoga will be hard to fit in.
What meant by emotional charged situation was, when my ex and I bump into each other. It just doesn’t feel good. Uneasiness, grief etc starts to kick in. Its like I feel I have been betrayed and there’s not a thing in this world I can do about it.