Seeking clarity and wisdom.

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    I have been emotionally invested in a relationship with this man for over 30 year in one form or another.  We are in our 50’s.  I love this man and I have told him so on many occasions.  However, he has never said the same to me but I associate that with emotional maturity on my part.  I am able to be honest with myself.  I genuinely have no idea of his feelings towards me.  All I do know is that he has been a part of my life all this time and has not left.

    We communicate a lot by text and seem unable to have really deep conversation about emotions when face to face.  I am accustomed to this.  Every so often, I will have a ‘moment’ where I need clarification, validation, explanation of what it is between us.  I am crystal clear on my feelings.  He feels that after this length of time, I should be able to ‘let him go’.  I struggle because I cannot understand why he has not walked away.  You would think that he should have reached a point when he said enough is enough.  But he hasn’t.  And so his remaining a part of my life feeds my emotional stance towards him.

    This morning, I had another ‘moment’ and told him truthfully that I believe I have been using him emotionally by keeping him in my life.  I told him that I am not addicted to him, I am not obsessed with him and that I am not in love with him.  I do love him but I am not in love with him.  I explained that for 20 years, I have been using him as an emotional crutch, telling him that I struggle to move on because of him, that I struggle with my emotions because of him.  But now, with some introspection, I recognise this is not true.  What I have been doing is acting and behaving in a way to keep him close to me.  I assume he stayed to try to save me because I cannot understand what held him there for 20 years.

    Now I feel guilty.  His response to my texts was that he didn’t know what to say to what I wrote.  I spilled the beans about perhaps holding him unnecessarily by my side for 20 years and that I am sorry for the selfish behaviour that held him there and he says he doesn’t know what to say.

    The logical person in me says that I didn’t hold him.  He was there because he wanted to be.  He could have walked away from the relationship at any point, assuming he realised it was one sided.  But I am struggling with 20 years.  He valued our friendship to that extent?  He was trying to save me?  What?  And now, have I made a mistake?  Should I have let sleeping dogs lie and allowed us to continue the relationship as it was?  Very one sided whilst I tell him I love him and he says nothing but stays in my life for another 30 years?

    I left the onus is on him to contact me if he wants to.  To decide what he wants.  If he wants to try to maintain a friendship.  Because I now believe that is all we have.  But I am suffering from guilt that I have destroyed the love I had for him and perhaps he for me; although clearly not reciprocated.  Should I try to text him and throw myself at his feet claiming another moment of madness?


    The lack of response is deafening.  Again, I have to make assumptions that a failure to respond from another party means it is all in my head.

    Thank you for the replies.


    Hi Tahlullah,

    My goodness, I’m here once a day and anita is here quite a bit. Give it a DAY. People are enjoying the holiday weekend with their families (in the U.S.). I also went to bed!

    As for this guy, he is a fixture in your life and it sounds like he took your undefined relationship (somewhere between love and friendship?) for granted.

    Take Care,



    * Dear Inky:

    An  early Merry Christmas and happy holiday season!

    Dear Tahlullah:

    I wasn’t  at the  computer when you posted yesterday and read  your thread a few moments ago. I am not clear about the relationship with this man: has there been physical intimacy/ sex between the two of you all these years, at times during these  decades that  he’s been in your life; have the two of you been individually involved  in intimate relationships with other people while  being in each other’s life all these  years?

    What  was the nature of the relationship?



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