July 28, 2020 at 12:28 pm #363001
I just let go of my ex. Or rather began the process. He and I broke up officially in May, but we’ve been holding on ever since. For a while we were still acting like we were together, but without the title. He’s always been more focused on his career than our relationship. This is not to say it was a bad relationship because it wasn’t. Even as I messaged to let him know that I needed to say “goodbye for now” he was extremely supportive. He told me he loved me very much and supported me healing myself. I really can’t appreciate him enough. I’ve learned so much about love when it comes to him. I’d even say this his love may be more unconditional than my own. He genuinely wants me to be happy.
I, on the other hand, am more focused on how I want him to make me feel. I really do want to love him unconditionally and I feel like beginning this process of letting him go is a good start. We both lost ourselves in the relationship, and while it hurts that we aren’t together, I don’t want to hold onto hope that we will come together again. I want to let go of that hope so I can truly let him go as well. But it’s hard. Any advice would be truly appreciated.July 28, 2020 at 1:53 pm #363021
You wrote that “his love may be more unconditional than” your own and that you would like to “love him unconditionally”- how was his love for you unconditional?
I ask because an answer will help me to come up with the advice you asked for.
anitaJuly 28, 2020 at 2:02 pm #363023
Thank you for your response! I say that because he genuinely wants me to be happy. He wants me to succeed and love myself and heal. I do want all the same things for him, but I feel like i’m having more trouble letting him go than he has of letting me go. At least it seems that way. He told me that it isn’t easy, he just doesn’t talk much about how hard it is.July 28, 2020 at 2:21 pm #363028
He genuinely wants you to love yourself and heal, but he doesn’t want to be there with you as you love yourself and heal (from what?.. he wants to be elsewhere, focused on his career and have a lasting relationship with another woman?
If so, why doesn’t he want to live with you and be a witness and an intimate participant in your life?
(still trying to understand).
anitaJuly 28, 2020 at 3:27 pm #363042
He doesn’t want to be in a relationship at all because he said he felt like he lost himself in our relationship. He wants to take time to find himself again and focus on his career. He is open to a friendship, but I am not open to that yet. He is able to conceal his romantic feelings for me, whereas I am not. He does want me in his life and I want him in mine, but not if we aren’t on the same page be it friendship or otherwise. It hurts too badly to be around him if we aren’t together as a couple because I am still holding onto those feelings.
I know I need to heal from codependency, and I could tell I was projecting upon him. Which is another reason I pulled away. His main focus right now is his career, and my main focus has always been relationships. I hope that makes a little more sense?July 28, 2020 at 3:59 pm #363044
Reads to me that he unconditionally loves you as a friend, and that is very different from and much easier than loving you as an intimate partner/ girlfriend.
I think that he “is able to conceal his romantic feelings for” you because these are not strong feelings (this is why he was inclined to focus on his career). On the other hand, your romantic feelings for him are strong (this is why you were inclined to focus on the relationship).
“I can’t appreciate him enough… I’d even say his love may be more unconditional than my own”- seems to me that you put him and his friend-love toward you on a pedestal, seeing his love as more than it is. In your quest to let go of him, it will help if you take him off the pedestal. Don’t see him as more (or less) than he is, and don’t see his love as more than that friend-love that it is, if indeed that’s all that it is.
It is easy to say loving words, to express loving emotions during short, limited period of times on the phone, or during limited-time visits. It is way, way more difficult and challenging to love a person in practice, while living together. So take him off the pedestal as a start. Do I make sense to you?
anitaJuly 28, 2020 at 4:39 pm #363051
Everything you’re saying makes sense. Although he told me that he does have strong romantic feelings for me. I believe him. I know he loves me a lot. I agree that I shouldn’t place him a pedestal though. I always placed him on one, and I know it is because I feel incomplete and like I have no purpose without being in a relationship with someone.July 28, 2020 at 4:45 pm #363053GLParticipant
You’ve mentioned codependency on your post on top. Could you give more details? Were your actions geared towards taking care of your partner, dropping everything for them when they call or is in need of help? Or were you expecting them to help you whenever you were in trouble?
Also, what are your fears in letting go of your ex? Do you fear being alone? Do you fear not being able to meet someone like him in the future? Do you fear not being in a relationship? What are your fears?
GLJuly 28, 2020 at 4:48 pm #363055
Children put their parent/parents on a pedestal, it makes children feel safe to see their parents as powerful and very loving, makes children feel safe, protected, cared for. Women often place men on a pedestal in a similar way, for the same purpose- to feel safe and cared for.
Do post again anytime, Marnia, because the “Letting go” process will take some time, and because I would like to read more from you and about you.
anitaJuly 28, 2020 at 5:24 pm #363062
Thank you for responding! My codependency displayed itself in both ways: I dropped everything to care for him, and wanted him to do the same for me. From the very beginning of our relationship he never had any issue with telling me no. Which is good. He did what he could always and always let me know he loved me.
I fear no one will love me in the way he did, no one will be there for me consistently, no one will ever want to date/marry me. I feel like being in a relationship is my purpose and without that I feel hopeless.July 28, 2020 at 9:01 pm #363081NoorParticipant
Being in a relationship is a natural craving, after all, human beings are social animals. We long for companionship but to make them the ultimate purpose or goal in life can be extremely stressful even for the person you are with. Think of it this way you are taking all your lemons and putting it one basket that is not capable of handling more than let’s say 50 lemons but if you continue to overwhelm it instead of dividing the lemons and using other baskets then you are bound to damage the basket.
Your desire to be in relationships should be parallel to other things in life as well, such as your career goals, family, friends, and other things that make your life your life. Even if you are in a healthy and loving relationship it is still important for that relationship to not become your everything to a point where you are not able to set boundaries or you are “dropping everything to care” for the other person.
Many of the things you have mentioned such as “no one will ever want to date/marry me”, makes me wonder why you feel such negativity towards you. It seems you are willing to care, empathize, love, and appreciate the person you are with which are wonderful qualities and I am certain you have many more. So why wouldn’t anyone want to date/marry you? I would highly encourage that you take some time away from this relationship and focus on you. The letting go process as Anita mentioned will be hard but it is a journey that is important for you to take in order to be in a relationship that can nurture and grow. Just remember your purpose in life should first and for most be to take care of your mental wellbeing and the rest should follow.
NoorJuly 29, 2020 at 8:49 am #363111RaeParticipant
Hi. This is all very helpful. I am trying to let go and having trouble. My husband of 20 years has decided he no longer loves me and wants to end our marriage after he has decided the things he fell in love with, drive him nuts. We are in our 50s. He was a family man, best partner for last 17 years. We have been disconnected for a while and I missed things along the way. There are missing variables and I feel I will find them out in time(mid life crisis/wants a new relationship)? He had a recent career loss and we have been in counseling for a year. He feels he has tried everything and is ready to move on(says we are not fixable). I feel like he quit us, but if he doesn’t love and appreciate me s a partner should(and feels like i cannot change b/c I don’t get it)what can I do? Especially if he thinks he no longer loves me. This blows my mind, it is like a death. Who quits after 20 years???
I finally have accepted this is real, that maybe this is a gift to me. I have kids that are school age and I am just not sure how to get through this. I feel the perspective here may help… any advice is appreciated.July 29, 2020 at 9:33 am #363127
* Dear Rae: would you like to start your own thread (click FORUMS above), scroll down to CATEGORIES, choose RELATIONSHIPS, scroll down to the empty boxes. You can copy the above and paste it there). I will be glad to reply to you there.
anitaJuly 29, 2020 at 1:33 pm #363149GLParticipant
I think it’s fine to make relationships one of the main focal point of your life. But as you’ve realized, when you put all of your energy into one relationship, you will eventually get lost and lose yourself. Why does this happen? Because you were trying to do the impossible, merging two whole to create one. One plus one does not make one, but a lot of people are taught that they are halves, or even zero, therefore they need something outside of themselves to become whole. Do you feel that way yourself?
If you do, you’ll have to look at the programming you were equipped with, starting from your childhood to your adult life. What was the messages presented to you and which messages have you ingrained in your mind, thinking that it was true. After, you fear that no one else will love like he did, but what exactly is love for you? A body that you can come home to at the end of the day? Why not get a dog then? Or is it something you give therefore they should give you in return? That’s just entitlement or a give and take. Someone to validate you as a person? Someone to make you feel as if you matter? But for how long will that feeling last until you need your next high? How many times will a person have to tell you “I love you” until you feel satisfied? Or will you ever feel satisfied? When is it enough?
On the other hand, though you give focus and energy on your relationship with your boyfriend, where is the energy for your relationship with yourself? You might think you feel incomplete without being in a relationship with other people, but what about the relationship with yourself? A relationship with yourself is also a relationship, so why did you not put in any effort with yourself?
Relationships are important to you, but you’re neglecting an important relationship by ignoring yourself and focusing on others. As it is far too easy to project your desires onto people, ask yourself why you can’t fulfill those desires by your own effort with your own self, first and foremost, than relied other others to fulfill those desires for you.