Author Topic: More relationship frustration  (Read 9736 times)

deek

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #50 on: October 29, 2018, 09:18:58 AM »
Has anyone here split up at one point with their current SO?? What was the process like? Did you lose respect and have to regain it? I just want to talk through this a little more.

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #51 on: October 29, 2018, 09:21:00 AM »
I agree.  I would send her a text saying, "I know the relationship is over, but I'm still trying to find some closure.  It seemed like things were going really well and then it just ended.  Could we talk on the phone one last time so that I can better understand what happened?"  I think two adults who ended things amicably after several months of dating can handle that phone call.  Think of it as an exit interview.  Under no circumstances think that you are getting back together, and specifically don't whine or beg.  What you learn will probably help you for future relationships.
It's tricky to ask things.  It's fine if you want more details if that is truthfully for closure (which is rarely the case, by definition there isn't closure so one person still trying to communicate often is open to resuming the relationship once "things are cleared up" but the person breaking up may or may not want to explain everything to the nth degree) but I think there is a good chance to expect a person to not respond if asked for reasons.  If they do, it should be viewed as bonus information and not an obligation they have to give.  Thus I like the idea of a letter (if it will bother you if nothing further is ever sent, otherwise leave it alone) in which things are explained rather than asked, it's one-way communication that can be viewed at the leisure of the receiver.  Wish them well at the end of it and word it so that if any other communication never happened it wouldn't seem like something was a cliffhanger.

I disagree that there is no harm in asking for closure or reasons. Unfortunately, we live in a world where men not being able to take rejection or "no" presents actual danger to many women. OP's ex may know that he is a "good guy" who is kind and sweet and thoughtful WHILE THEY ARE DATING. She may hope that he is also kind and sweet and thoughtful post-breakup. But we sadly live in a world where that isn't true in far too many instances. As a result, any effort to reach out to her unsolicited or promise it's in her court or ask for reasons may be unwelcome and not perceived as well-intentioned as it may be intended. And she may not feel safe telling you the truth anyway, whatever her truth may be for why she was no longer interested in continuing this relationship.

OP - I'm sorry to hear that she didn't want to be with you anymore. It's painful, and it will take time to get over it. Let it go. Google Captain Awkward's tips for how to move on after a break up. Let her go. She doesn't "owe" you more than she has offered, and it's impossible to divorce your desire for REASONS from the societal context in which she may rightfully be unwilling or unable to articulate them to you.


Still Being

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #52 on: October 29, 2018, 09:22:02 AM »
She apologized via text (after apologizing in person) and I think iím just going to leave it at that. Idk if I can handle trying to put more words on paper after I talked to her (as much as I could) on the hike. Maybe I just need to be better. Maybe she needs space. Maybe the timing isnít right. Idk.. more communication wonít help. Maybe down the road when iím healed I can chat with her and gain more respect than I had previously. But for right now I canít go a couple hours without shedding a tear and itís absolutely brutal in the worst way. I donít want to be like this.

What are your hobbies? Do some of those!

maizeman

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #53 on: October 29, 2018, 09:25:26 AM »
She apologized via text (after apologizing in person) and I think iím just going to leave it at that. Idk if I can handle trying to put more words on paper after I talked to her (as much as I could) on the hike. Maybe I just need to be better. Maybe she needs space. Maybe the timing isnít right. Idk.. more communication wonít help. Maybe down the road when iím healed I can chat with her and gain more respect than I had previously. But for right now I canít go a couple hours without shedding a tear and itís absolutely brutal in the worst way. I donít want to be like this.

Good for you (to your first sentence).

I know it feels horrible right now. I promise it is going to get better in the future. But the only way to get to the future is through experiencing a bunch of the present. As much as you can stay busy.

Try to make sure you spend time with friends and just just alone licking your wounds. And you'll be in that less painful future before you know it.

me1

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #54 on: October 29, 2018, 09:36:40 AM »
Maybe the guy who called her a psychopath went too far, but there are definitely different ways to dump someone, and there are also things you can discuss in a relationship before you come to the conclusion to dump them. To process your feelings alone about a relationship and not involve the other person at all seems a little... selfish. At the least.  I am a little surprised how many people think its ok to lead someone on, and not discuss any issues you are having, and then dump them without an explanation.  I don't think this is what a decent human being does. It's like you are completely discounting that the other person is flesh and blood with feelings and emotions of their own, and are just out there seeking what will make you feel good without the least bit of effort or communication. I think it's emotionally immature, but not surprising since you are both very young. I think the advice other people have given you to just move on and concentrate on doing things you love and forget about her, and not have any contact is the best way to get over something like this. It doesn't seem like it now, but you will get over it and find someone who can be honest with you.

Villanelle

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #55 on: October 29, 2018, 10:05:44 AM »
Has anyone here split up at one point with their current SO?? What was the process like? Did you lose respect and have to regain it? I just want to talk through this a little more.

Yes.  We dated for 6 weeks when we were 16.  Then we dated (semi-casually,) when we were about 19 before he went away to college.  He ended it because he was going away to a service academy and knew he wouldn't have time for a relationship.  I thought that was silly and that we should at least give it a try, but accepted his decision.  (Well, I said, "I think that's stupid", but then I didn't try to talk him out of it.)  Fast forward 4.5 years and we started dating again.  We had been on contact that whole time, usually getting together to catch up once or twice a year when he was in town visiting his family. 

I think the reason it worked and there was no power imbalance to sort out or loss of respect is that our lives had changed significantly during that time (college, the important early 20s years of growth and maturing, etc.).  And we broke up because of a major life obstacle, not out of lack of desire to be together.  I think people who break up can get back together and have healthy, lasting relationships.  But that's almost never the case if something meaningful hasn't changed.  A year passing is not "something meaningful". 

EricEng

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #56 on: October 29, 2018, 10:16:16 AM »
Just let it go.  If she's been mulling this for a month after 5 months of dating, then it isn't right.  You can be crazy about her, but if she isn't into you for long term then you just need to let it go.  She's been pulling up roots for a month and probably still is, that isn't a process that reverses.  Now it's your turn and it is going to hurt.  Went through this many times myself and at the moment it always felt right to keep fighting for it, but that was wrong as it would have never worked.  Take your lessons you learned and keep searching.  The right one will be crazy about you and not be plagued with doubts.

deek

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #57 on: October 29, 2018, 10:17:27 AM »
I spoke in depth with my mom and dad and thereís just so much evidence that she has set up a bit of a wall and just isnít there yet with sharing everything she feels. While I was with her, I could feel it build up once in awhile. She didnít grow up in the smoothest environment and is still working on her relationship with her step dad. I know that anyone around her experiences/will experience this as well. It would be tough for a woman in her situation, I can empathize. But I wouldnít wish anyone to be blindsided like I was.

deek

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #58 on: October 29, 2018, 10:19:06 AM »
Just let it go.  If she's been mulling this for a month after 5 months of dating, then it isn't right.  You can be crazy about her, but if she isn't into you for long term then you just need to let it go.  She's been pulling up roots for a month and probably still is, that isn't a process that reverses.  Now it's your turn and it is going to hurt.  Went through this many times myself and at the moment it always felt right to keep fighting for it, but that was wrong as it would have never worked.  Take your lessons you learned and keep searching.  The right one will be crazy about you and not be plagued with doubts.

Iím trying my best. And this is a good outlet.. itís so much easier said than done.

obstinate

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #59 on: October 29, 2018, 10:31:37 AM »
They say time heals many wounds. You'll be hurting for a little while, and might always have a bit of scar tissue from this injury. But you'll walk again. Maybe not today or tomorrow, though.

mm1970

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #60 on: October 29, 2018, 10:35:20 AM »
She sounds like some weird self absorbed psychopath.  I think you dodged a bullet.  Though in the long run I think you'll miss the dog.

Whoa, where do you get this?  Because she realized that it just didn't feel right and she didn't want to spend more time on the relationship?  That's a stretch.

EricEng

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #61 on: October 29, 2018, 10:40:20 AM »
Iím trying my best. And this is a good outlet.. itís so much easier said than done.
I'm glad you are and we are here for you. Sorry, I did not mean to imply it would be easy or painfree.  This is going to hurt.  My usual rule of thumb is 1 month of pain for each month of dating.  By that point I normally feel good again.

charis

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #62 on: October 29, 2018, 10:51:56 AM »
Maybe the guy who called her a psychopath went too far, but there are definitely different ways to dump someone, and there are also things you can discuss in a relationship before you come to the conclusion to dump them. To process your feelings alone about a relationship and not involve the other person at all seems a little... selfish. At the least.  I am a little surprised how many people think its ok to lead someone on, and not discuss any issues you are having, and then dump them without an explanation.  I don't think this is what a decent human being does. It's like you are completely discounting that the other person is flesh and blood with feelings and emotions of their own, and are just out there seeking what will make you feel good without the least bit of effort or communication. I think it's emotionally immature, but not surprising since you are both very young. I think the advice other people have given you to just move on and concentrate on doing things you love and forget about her, and not have any contact is the best way to get over something like this. It doesn't seem like it now, but you will get over it and find someone who can be honest with you.

Without much context to their relationship, the description of the break up actually sounded very mature to me.  It was in person and during an activity that they both enjoyed, and after only 5 months of dating.  There is nothing about that scenario that even suggests a psychopath or selfishness.  The lack of explanation sounds either benevolent (the truth hurts) or neutral (just not feeling it).  There's no easy way to break up, drawing it out can be worse that being abrupt.  She also apologized about having "blindsided" him.   It absolutely sucks, but it is what it is.

Stash Engineer

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #63 on: October 29, 2018, 11:01:42 AM »
Go back and re-read Maizeman's posts.  He said everything I'd say, only in a more articulate manner than I could.  I've got a couple of these T-shirts. 

deek

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #64 on: October 29, 2018, 11:15:23 AM »
After this Iím going to feel like I need a better image, more confidence, or whatever itís going to take to put this behind me. Iím having a hard time thinking Iím going to be able to do it without spending money (on clothes, a more structured gym regimen, healthy supplements, etc). One person said focus on FIRE then find a companion. Idk that I can do that, Iím 27, 20k in student loan debt, need more savings and want to own my own place. That canít happen in the blink of an eye. And I want to meet the one sooner than later.

Obviously Iím not going to force it and it will take awhile before I even want to meet anyone else.
« Last Edit: October 29, 2018, 11:22:46 AM by deek »

simonsez

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #65 on: October 29, 2018, 11:25:21 AM »
I agree.  I would send her a text saying, "I know the relationship is over, but I'm still trying to find some closure.  It seemed like things were going really well and then it just ended.  Could we talk on the phone one last time so that I can better understand what happened?"  I think two adults who ended things amicably after several months of dating can handle that phone call.  Think of it as an exit interview.  Under no circumstances think that you are getting back together, and specifically don't whine or beg.  What you learn will probably help you for future relationships.
It's tricky to ask things.  It's fine if you want more details if that is truthfully for closure (which is rarely the case, by definition there isn't closure so one person still trying to communicate often is open to resuming the relationship once "things are cleared up" but the person breaking up may or may not want to explain everything to the nth degree) but I think there is a good chance to expect a person to not respond if asked for reasons.  If they do, it should be viewed as bonus information and not an obligation they have to give.  Thus I like the idea of a letter (if it will bother you if nothing further is ever sent, otherwise leave it alone) in which things are explained rather than asked, it's one-way communication that can be viewed at the leisure of the receiver.  Wish them well at the end of it and word it so that if any other communication never happened it wouldn't seem like something was a cliffhanger.

I disagree that there is no harm in asking for closure or reasons. Unfortunately, we live in a world where men not being able to take rejection or "no" presents actual danger to many women. OP's ex may know that he is a "good guy" who is kind and sweet and thoughtful WHILE THEY ARE DATING. She may hope that he is also kind and sweet and thoughtful post-breakup. But we sadly live in a world where that isn't true in far too many instances. As a result, any effort to reach out to her unsolicited or promise it's in her court or ask for reasons may be unwelcome and not perceived as well-intentioned as it may be intended. And she may not feel safe telling you the truth anyway, whatever her truth may be for why she was no longer interested in continuing this relationship.

OP - I'm sorry to hear that she didn't want to be with you anymore. It's painful, and it will take time to get over it. Let it go. Google Captain Awkward's tips for how to move on after a break up. Let her go. She doesn't "owe" you more than she has offered, and it's impossible to divorce your desire for REASONS from the societal context in which she may rightfully be unwilling or unable to articulate them to you.
I think communicating after a breakup is indeed tricky (read: has risks, potential for harm, etc.) and should only be explored if you are the type of person regardless of gender who needs catharsis.  If it can be avoided, as I stated previously I recommend that course of inaction but I was only talking about for those that need to - which doesn't seem to be the OP and I didn't know at the time.  If that had been the case, I only meant that the communication be tailored in a way that isn't hateful, threatening, demanding, interrogative, consistent with an inability to accept 'No', or anything that might be regretted later including sending the letter itself.  As mentioned, yes, the other person does not have an obligation to say anything else.  Writing a physical letter, even if never sent, can still be therapeutic for someone in the shoes of the OP.  This thread's focus is the vantage of the OP, if the thread had been about someone dumping someone else asking for advice if they should respond to a potential text/email/letter then I'd be focused on that specific POV.

We will always live in a world where there is a non-zero number of people that after rejection will make poor decisions including harming (or threatening to harm) others - making everyone conform to a communication-is-verboten standard after a rejection is an interesting theory but those doing the harm (which of course is not 100% of people that do reach out in some way after a relationship is over) aren't going to follow the rules anyway, let alone start a well-balanced thread on the Internet asking for advice/venting.

As stated by others, this too shall pass.

EricEng

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #66 on: October 29, 2018, 11:35:15 AM »
After this Iím going to feel like I need a better image, more confidence, or whatever itís going to take to put this behind me. Iím having a hard time thinking Iím going to be able to do it without spending money (on clothes, a more structured gym regimen, healthy supplements, etc).
Just know that this is normal.  Your self esteem is always at rock bottom after this and that is to be expected.  Don't beat yourself up over that feeling, it is expected.  That feeling is you pulling up roots and part of healing.  The self esteem will work it's way back over a few months.  When you feel ready, group activities with friends is good to repair self esteem (especially friends not connected to ex). 

Bateaux

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #67 on: October 29, 2018, 11:36:15 AM »
After this Iím going to feel like I need a better image, more confidence, or whatever itís going to take to put this behind me. Iím having a hard time thinking Iím going to be able to do it without spending money (on clothes, a more structured gym regimen, healthy supplements, etc). One person said focus on FIRE then find a companion. Idk that I can do that, Iím 27, 20k in student loan debt, need more savings and want to own my own place. That canít happen in the blink of an eye. And I want to meet the one sooner than later.

Obviously Iím not going to force it and it will take awhile before I even want to meet anyone else.

That was me.  You're only a couple of years older than my boys.  It's the advice I'd give them.   Focus on your future, paying off debt, saving for investment and getting your own place.  You're only 27 and your heart is broken.  It's going to be fine.  A little secret is, since you're a guy your attraction to the other sex will only grow going forward.  New clothes aren't required. 

deek

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #68 on: October 29, 2018, 11:39:37 AM »
After this Iím going to feel like I need a better image, more confidence, or whatever itís going to take to put this behind me. Iím having a hard time thinking Iím going to be able to do it without spending money (on clothes, a more structured gym regimen, healthy supplements, etc).
Just know that this is normal.  Your self esteem is always at rock bottom after this and that is to be expected.  Don't beat yourself up over that feeling, it is expected.  That feeling is you pulling up roots and part of healing.  The self esteem will work it's way back over a few months.  When you feel ready, group activities with friends is good to repair self esteem (especially friends not connected to ex).

I really only have 5-7 really close friends. Iím okay with that, but two of the ones I spend the most time with is a couple and the wife works with my ex and both went to law school together. A couple others are also included in this group when we spend time together. I really only have 1 other option.

EricEng

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #69 on: October 29, 2018, 11:49:42 AM »
I really only have 5-7 really close friends. Iím okay with that, but two of the ones I spend the most time with is a couple and the wife works with my ex and both went to law school together. A couple others are also included in this group when we spend time together. I really only have 1 other option.
Well that makes it a bit harder.  Depending on your interests perhaps try meeting some new friends without the baggage or reminders, even if they are just temporary new friends.

For instance, try visiting a board game group meetup.  The people are typically very friendly and social.  Hope this doesn't come off wrong, but it also tends to be mostly men of the more awkward/nerdy persuasion (not close to all, but fair amount), which can help when your self esteem is down.  When I move to a new location, I usually frequent a few groups to spark a social circle.  Same thing could be done a with a rock climbing group or cycling, etc.

Still Being

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #70 on: October 29, 2018, 11:57:09 AM »
A little secret is, since you're a guy your attraction to the other sex will only grow going forward.  New clothes aren't required.

Purely out of curiosity and not argumentative.. Is there any science/study to this or if this is anecdotal?

deek

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #71 on: October 29, 2018, 12:06:47 PM »
I really only have 5-7 really close friends. Iím okay with that, but two of the ones I spend the most time with is a couple and the wife works with my ex and both went to law school together. A couple others are also included in this group when we spend time together. I really only have 1 other option.
Well that makes it a bit harder.  Depending on your interests perhaps try meeting some new friends without the baggage or reminders, even if they are just temporary new friends.

For instance, try visiting a board game group meetup.  The people are typically very friendly and social.  Hope this doesn't come off wrong, but it also tends to be mostly men of the more awkward/nerdy persuasion (not close to all, but fair amount), which can help when your self esteem is down.  When I move to a new location, I usually frequent a few groups to spark a social circle.  Same thing could be done a with a rock climbing group or cycling, etc.

I really do appreciate your input. Personally, its hard for me to gain a great friend. Iím a super laid back person and introverted so I donít put myself out there much. It just isnít natural. I have many ďfriends,Ē but only feel like a few will be there for me through thick and thin. At times this is difficult, at other times itís great because the friends I do make (while not a regular occurrence) end up being great friends.

Bird In Hand

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #72 on: October 29, 2018, 12:11:54 PM »
I was just simply implying the neither one of us ever felt smothered, we didnít want to spend every waking moment together and I think thatís healthy.

I dunno.  I guess everyone's different.  But when I was much younger, most of my serious relationships were of the "want to spend every waking moment together" variety, at least for the first 6 months or so.  If you only saw each other a few times a week and lacked that head-over-heels insanity of new love, then maybe the chemistry (literally -- I'm talking estrogen/testosterone, dopamine, and oxytocin) wasn't quite there?

This is obviously a tough thing for anyone in your situation to deal with.  It's going to hurt for a while, but gradually things will return to normal.  Through this experience I hope you learn some things about yourself and about what you're looking for in a partner and in a relationship.  Hopefully this wisdom will help you find an ideal partner in the future.  Until that time, hopefully it will help you recognize early on when a partner or relationship is not quite right for you.

Bateaux

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #73 on: October 29, 2018, 12:13:51 PM »
A little secret is, since you're a guy your attraction to the other sex will only grow going forward.  New clothes aren't required.

Purely out of curiosity and not argumentative.. Is there any science/study to this or if this is anecdotal?

I'm not going to quote some study.  The attraction happens because the man gains more confidence as he's better established.  It doens't mean you can get out of shape and live like a recluse.   You have to grow as a person through your experiences. It's likely because a pretty face isn't as important.

maizeman

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #74 on: October 29, 2018, 12:19:54 PM »
A little secret is, since you're a guy your attraction to the other sex will only grow going forward.  New clothes aren't required.

Purely out of curiosity and not argumentative.. Is there any science/study to this or if this is anecdotal?

I'm not going to quote some study.  The attraction happens because the man gains more confidence as he's better established.  It doens't mean you can get out of shape and live like a recluse.   You have to grow as a person through your experiences. It's likely because a pretty face isn't as important.

Sex ratios among singles also change over time. Men tend to die earlier, and are more likely to marry a younger spouse.

For a fun visualization of this, take a look at this map (http://jonathansoma.com/singles/#1/3/2/0) and play with the age selector. If you look at 18-29 years olds there is a surplus of single men relative to single women in almost every city in the country. 30-44, some cities has significantly more single women some significantly more single men. 45-59, almost every city has a large surplus of single women.

If you look at all ages combined, cities west of the mississippi tend to be single men heavy, while cities east of the mississippi tend to have more single women. *shrug*

Anyway, sorry for going off topic.

mveill1

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #75 on: October 29, 2018, 12:23:44 PM »
I really only have 5-7 really close friends. Iím okay with that, but two of the ones I spend the most time with is a couple and the wife works with my ex and both went to law school together. A couple others are also included in this group when we spend time together. I really only have 1 other option.
Well that makes it a bit harder.  Depending on your interests perhaps try meeting some new friends without the baggage or reminders, even if they are just temporary new friends.

For instance, try visiting a board game group meetup.  The people are typically very friendly and social.  Hope this doesn't come off wrong, but it also tends to be mostly men of the more awkward/nerdy persuasion (not close to all, but fair amount), which can help when your self esteem is down.  When I move to a new location, I usually frequent a few groups to spark a social circle.  Same thing could be done a with a rock climbing group or cycling, etc.

I really do appreciate your input. Personally, its hard for me to gain a great friend. Iím a super laid back person and introverted so I donít put myself out there much. It just isnít natural. I have many ďfriends,Ē but only feel like a few will be there for me through thick and thin. At times this is difficult, at other times itís great because the friends I do make (while not a regular occurrence) end up being great friends.

Well you did say you wanted to "improve yourself" and be better. You named clothes, confidence etc. With the utmost tender respect, that's bullshit. You can look good in an old t-shirt and confidence isn't a swith to turn on and off. You have to attain it through other means. By being at peace and happy. How do you do that?

... maybe making friends is a skill you can improve on? If I understand you correctly meeting new people is hard but having friends is very valuable to you. So I think it would be beneficial to put yourself out there. No afterthoughts or expectations. I really think you will benefit from the company of others, and men in particular at this stage. It's good for you.

When I got dumped by my first wife (yep I'm a glutton for punishment :), joining a kickboxing club did wonders. Only saw them 3x a week, but just talking to guys and learning and getting scared, not to mention the first leg check on your shins will make you forget any heartache, that was just immensely helpful. From there I joined various meetups, rekindled old friendships, and ironically it helped me be more comfortable spending time alone...

Anyway, whatever works for you!

Just one more story. Day my wife came in to collect her stuff, I sought refuge at the house of a married friend. And one thing he said to me is that he was almost envious that I was going to meet a bunch of new people, take up new activities, etc. For a moment I thought that he was having marital difficulties, but actually he had been through a really bad breakup himself a few years prior. Anyway, point of the story is, in a year or two, you will look at yourself, fitter perhaps, certainly happier and most certainly more mature, and you will look back at this time as the start of this growing process and smile. It won't be easy and you will have had setbacks, but you'll be grateful for all the insights and maturity that will have made you even readier for your true soulmate. 

I'm not asking you to stop feeling like shit now, but please believe me that you have every reason to be hopeful and look forward to the future.

mveill1

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #76 on: October 29, 2018, 12:25:40 PM »
A little secret is, since you're a guy your attraction to the other sex will only grow going forward.  New clothes aren't required.

Purely out of curiosity and not argumentative.. Is there any science/study to this or if this is anecdotal?

I'm not going to quote some study.  The attraction happens because the man gains more confidence as he's better established.  It doens't mean you can get out of shape and live like a recluse.   You have to grow as a person through your experiences. It's likely because a pretty face isn't as important.

Definitely observed that there's quite a bit of mean reversion happening. Awkward twentysomethings mature and grow more confident, handsome bad boys keep on partying and get ugly. Completely subjective and biased observation - but that works for me!!

ketchup

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #77 on: October 29, 2018, 01:44:48 PM »
Oof, sorry to hear this happened, OP.

I've had a "bad" breakup like this once.  I was younger and the relationship was shorter, but I see some echoes here.

She broke up with me because she wanted to break up with me.  She had given it lots of thought and it was very much not a snap decision.  Nothing was going to change that.

She didn't want to hurt me.  She wanted "to still be friends" only in the polite sense.  She didn't tell me all her reasoning because she thought it was better that way.  It wasn't.

It took me an embarrassing amount of time to learn all that, but once I did everything was easier.  It still sucked, but I could move on.  And I did.

BicycleB

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #78 on: October 29, 2018, 02:12:47 PM »
Deek, my condolences re your lost relationship. My personal opinion after being through a few of these on both sides (old guy here, but I swear I remember being 27...felt exactly as you describe) is, this happens all the time to someone and you didn't do anything wrong; it's probably just her own quirk.

More detail:
1. I dated a wonderful woman who was 24 and then 25 (I was early 30s). She broke up with me after seven months. Later, I realized that she broke up with everyone the same way as she broke up with me.
2. Her breakup technique shouldn't be the issue. Strong disagreement with the fellow who called it psychopath. She communicated gently but clearly and indicated there was prep time. You may not enjoy the details, but they were fair and do indicate it's over. IMHO, very fair.
3. Again, this happens all the time. Most relationships end with someone dumping someone. Most of the others end by "cheating" - an affair in which the prospective dumper jumps in the sack with somebody else. Option 3 is the leaving party picks fights or otherwise mistreats the dumpee, hoping unconsciously to drive them away. Unless you AND her were ready to marry EACH OTHER in the VERY NEAR FUTURE, you got off easy compared to the other options!! (My apology for caps - just trying to emphasize how specific the conditions have to be to prevent some sort of breakup eventually anyway.)
4. It may seem now like options are few, but they exist, and you will find them. The sooner you move on, the sooner you'll find the right path forward.
5. Great respect for the intermittent remarks that you will move on. Do that!
6. You are experiencing a lot of pain. This is significant because it says about you that a personal relationship like this is a big event for you, but also one hedged about by barricades of pain. To the extent possible, I suggest:
a. Recognizing this as part of the sequence for you
b. Knowing it won't last forever
c. Journaling some of the pain details for clarity
d. Getting some emotional counseling if possible, to maximize the healing so that the pain is temporary and a growth experience rather than a pointless banging against a permanent wall that limits you
7. Do everything in your power to lighten your approach to these things, including every step of the moving-on process, the meeting-people process, the living-alone process, etc. 
8. Definitely do whatever self-improvement ideas you have, unless they cost more than $1000 (replace my arbitrary number with something you feel is reasonable, but please no more than a month's pay). You'll feel better whether anyone else cares about the specifics.
9. Do take actions to add some new friend network or social activity. Take the actions, whether or not they have the effect that you want. Do them even if they "work" and you still feel bad.
a. Underlying goal A for this is to exercise your socializing so you remain/become/are proven more than ever to be a socially competent, decent guy.
b. Underlying goal B is that human contact helps everyone, even introverts, so take action to add it.
c. Underlying goal C is to be a proactive, respectable self sufficient Man Who Has a Life rather than a pathetic sad sack who is not just lonely, but at the mercy of the one woman who dodged his clingy bullet by dumping him. I don't think this latter view is at all accurate, but it's the kind of subliminal feeling that you might think yourself if you stay at home consistently. Get out of the house, even for little things; you'll win the undying respect of both your future dates and your own subconscious.
10. Once you've done 9 - as soon as you like, or feel capable, whenever is first, do try some more dating. Do it as lightly as possible, but my point is, don't plan to finish your self-improvement program before dating, just do each thing as soon as you're ready/able. My deepest point on this is: The breakup was about her, not you; you're probably fine already, probably exactly what your future wife is already looking for. She's probably looking right now - don't make her wait too long.  :)

Best wishes!

PS. If you're going to follow or re-read any of our suggestions, I suggest @Villanelle's. She a wise poster. Plus, being an intelligent woman near your likely target age, her advice is a particularly good guide to what similar women (aka future date/mate possibilities) are likely to think. Her answers are a good sign for you, I bet.

Ok, I'm off to a track meet...my own cheap date...  :)
« Last Edit: October 29, 2018, 02:38:49 PM by BicycleB »

deek

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #79 on: October 29, 2018, 04:56:41 PM »
Iíve read over most of these again and I really appreciate everything. Still not better (actually a little sick to my stomach TBH), but I hope time helps. Just got done with a two hour workout to put those feelings on hold (sort of) for at least a little bit.

undercover

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #80 on: October 29, 2018, 06:31:37 PM »
5-7 close friends is killing it. Anyone's lucky to have one close friend. Be grateful for that. And you have family to support you. As someone just said, you will look back on this time and will have learned so much. It doesn't sound like this person ever was really fully present with you. The warning signs should have been there and most likely will be for you there in the future. That's not to say you should build some wall up against whatever future partner you might find. I know you feel like you either need her back or need to replace her right now, but that's the LAST thing you actually need. And in a few months you will not feel the need for anyone nearly as much if you put the time and energy into yourself.

Do whatever it is you want to do as a hobby and spend on that if necessary - just do what aligns with your current budget and obviously don't let it get out of control).

Spend if you want, just know that you can't spend your way out of this. The pain is part of the healing just like any other wound and there has to be a lot of actual work come from you to improve. Nothing wrong with treating yourself every now and then with some comfort food or going to see a movie though.

But the number one thing you can do is exercise and get more fit to build confidence. It just makes you feel better in general. And getting good at a sport is also great. In general being good at something is both attractive and confidence boosting.

Well you did say you wanted to "improve yourself" and be better. You named clothes, confidence etc. With the utmost tender respect, that's bullshit.

And I'm going to call bullshit right back at ya. A new outfit can do wonders for you and your confidence. There are of course, as with anything, diminishing returns. Buying new clothes every week isn't going to make you happy or more confident.

I'm not an especially vain person, but I feel much better when I'm wearing clothes that I like and I think look good on me. And I do like changing things up. $200-300 on clothes every year is very reasonable as it is but especially for someone who is trying to rebuild their image. And sometimes you do have to spend money to do the activities you want to do to gain confidence. That's just life. Nothing's free. It's either time or money.

I have no idea what shape OP is in, but if they have a ton of weight to lose then they could wait until losing it before rewarding themselves with some new shoes or shirts.

The rest of your advice was excellent.
« Last Edit: October 29, 2018, 06:43:19 PM by undercover »

limeandpepper

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #81 on: October 29, 2018, 09:46:03 PM »
I'm sorry this happened to you. If there's one thing I've learned in situations like this, it's that even when you get along great with someone, that doesn't mean you know what their thought processes are and what things might trigger them to certain decisions. There could be so, so much more behind the scenes that you don't know about (whether it's how the person's mind works or what has been happening in their life) and may never know about, and sometimes all you can do is to make peace with that. She has told you she didn't think it was a "forever" thing, that's a simple but valid explanation in itself, but as for delving deeper into why that is her perception, I'm not sure that is something that can always be easily put into words, in some cases it can be easily explained but in others it could just be how someone feels.

I noticed you titled your thread "more relationship frustration" so I wondered what that was about, then I saw that earlier this year you had also started a thread about the end of a relationship. Based on the timelines it looks as though you've jumped into this relationship pretty quickly after the other one ended. Maybe it's a good time to just take a break from dating? Enjoy being single for a while, work on yourself, do more of the things you like or have always wanted to try, etc.

mveill1

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #82 on: October 30, 2018, 03:02:58 AM »

Well you did say you wanted to "improve yourself" and be better. You named clothes, confidence etc. With the utmost tender respect, that's bullshit.

And I'm going to call bullshit right back at ya. A new outfit can do wonders for you and your confidence. There are of course, as with anything, diminishing returns. Buying new clothes every week isn't going to make you happy or more confident.


I accept your call. $200 of new clothes that make you feel like more of a stud, is not something I'll argue against. I was perhaps too keen to make a point about getting out of one's comfort zone, and to go out and experience new connections with other people in real life, new emotions, discoveries etc.

Which made me think of another piece of advice. In my honest opinion, this forum excluded, I'd think twice about finding answers and guidance online. In particular I'd think twice about joining / staying on Reddit.

Now I know they have frugal discussion groups, tons of supportive advice etc. but:

- the "good stuff" on reddit isn't any better than here
- even the "good" subreddits are sometimes squatted by sociopaths
- there are way too many happiness traps, toxic discussions that will make you resentful and wallow.

Again I'm not calling for the site to be shut down, not insulting anyone who goes there. But the risks are not worth it. Go out in real life, do meetups, sign up for a sport, and come here for your online venting.
« Last Edit: October 30, 2018, 03:12:34 AM by mveill1 »

EnjoyIt

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #83 on: October 30, 2018, 03:34:33 AM »
You mentioned something about needing confidence.  For an introvert it takes physical, mental and emotional work to be social.  For an extrovert it is easy to walk into a crowd of people and just start participating in conversation. For those people being involved gives them energy while an introvert gets exhausted doing the same thing. But, being social can be learned.  I have a buddy who is an extreme introvert who trained himself to act like an extrovert. It takes practice and can be part of what you call "bettering yourself."  There are plenty of online and hard copy resources that can assist you.

Zola.

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #84 on: October 30, 2018, 04:54:22 AM »
Deek - I feel your pain- I would say everyone commenting has been hurt or let down like this in the past, it is par for the course. Would recommend going absolutely cold turkey with her now, no contact unless she reaches out to you. If she wants to be with you, she will make it very clear. Nothing you can do will change her mind.

I can promise you this though - it will make you stronger, and you will be better for it, for now it just feels like an implosion, but it will pass and you will be thankful for it - in a weird sort of way. You will be able to cut through the BS later on and will be tougher for it.

You will find someone who you are meant to be with, when the time is right. I met my wife after 10 years of partying and messing about, just when I was coming out of the other side of it, when I least expected it.

Life goes on, focus on improving you, stay busy, stay social and get out there :)


Villanelle

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #85 on: October 30, 2018, 05:06:51 AM »
It surely sounds trite, but there is wisdom in the notion that you need to learn to be okay being alone. That, more than almost anything else you could ever do, creates a quiet (sexy) confidence in someone.  And it allows you to be far more subconsciously selective about partners because you aren't trying to make someone into the Right One. 

There's nothing wrong with wanting a partner.  But being okay not having one is a gift to yourself. And to your future partners. 

deek

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #86 on: October 30, 2018, 05:09:11 AM »
It surely sounds trite, but there is wisdom in the notion that you need to learn to be okay being alone. That, more than almost anything else you could ever do, creates a quiet (sexy) confidence in someone.  And it allows you to be far more subconsciously selective about partners because you aren't trying to make someone into the Right One. 

There's nothing wrong with wanting a partner.  But being okay not having one is a gift to yourself. And to your future partners.

I donít have any problems being alone. I was alone and loved it for years and years.

deek

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #87 on: October 30, 2018, 12:03:21 PM »
Is there any benefit to thanking her family?? We all got along really well. Or would that put a sour taste in her mouth?

BrightFIRE

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #88 on: October 30, 2018, 12:14:38 PM »
I donít have any problems being alone. I was alone and loved it for years and years.

And you will again. I went through a cycle in my late 20s/early 30s where I loved being single when I was single. Then I would meet someone, be really into the relationship, and be sad and not want to be single when it ended. But after some time, the "I love being single" feeling would come back.

And no, for the love of all that is right and good, do not contact her family. That would be sad and creepy.

okits

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #89 on: October 30, 2018, 12:16:35 PM »
Is there any benefit to thanking her family?? We all got along really well. Or would that put a sour taste in her mouth?

Given the short length of your relationship I'd just be friendly and gracious the next time I saw them.  Getting in contact with her family could seem like an attempt by you to hold on (or, less generously, an effort to infiltrate her life and stalk her). 

deek

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #90 on: October 30, 2018, 12:19:34 PM »
Is there any benefit to thanking her family?? We all got along really well. Or would that put a sour taste in her mouth?

Given the short length of your relationship I'd just be friendly and gracious the next time I saw them.  Getting in contact with her family could seem like an attempt by you to hold on (or, less generously, an effort to infiltrate her life and stalk her).

Thatís what I fear. I just appreciate them is all.

charis

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #91 on: October 30, 2018, 12:38:43 PM »
Contacting her family is just not a good idea unless you already have a relationship independent of your relationship with her (i.e., you golf with her brother, etc).  Contacting them just to express your appreciation will likely be uncomfortable for them and her.  I agree that you should be friendly if you see them again and leave it at that.

PepperPeter

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #92 on: October 30, 2018, 03:42:47 PM »
Is there any benefit to thanking her family?? We all got along really well. Or would that put a sour taste in her mouth?

OMG please don't be that guy.  You dated her for 5 months.  I've had longer and deeper relationships with sweaters.  Please put any thought of contacting her, her family, her dog, her second cousin, a friend she had a class with in college, etc. etc., right out of your head.

justchecking

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #93 on: October 30, 2018, 06:08:04 PM »
I am so sorry to hear about this.  I went through a fast and furious relationship when I was a little younger and it was broken off pretty abruptly as well.  The mantra that got me through it and makes it still something that I can look back at and move on from is repeating to myself to take the high road.  She was gone and I was not going to get her back.  There was not anything I could do except not be exceptionally weird about the situation.  Basically, my mantra drove me to do the same thing in almost every situation and that was to do nothing.  I saw her at work...do nothing.  I saw her with friends...do nothing.  I saw her at the bowling alley...do nothing.  Time will heal the wounds and finding someone else will also help, but not right away.  I swore off dating for awhile and really tried to not be that guy who keeps popping up and trying to get her back.  If you were to get back together the power dynamic would be so weird and you would spend so much energy and anxiety thinking about whether or not she was going to do the same thing again that you would sabotage the relationship.  Do nothing...it will save you in the end. 

deek

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #94 on: October 30, 2018, 07:26:21 PM »
I am so sorry to hear about this.  I went through a fast and furious relationship when I was a little younger and it was broken off pretty abruptly as well.  The mantra that got me through it and makes it still something that I can look back at and move on from is repeating to myself to take the high road.  She was gone and I was not going to get her back.  There was not anything I could do except not be exceptionally weird about the situation.  Basically, my mantra drove me to do the same thing in almost every situation and that was to do nothing.  I saw her at work...do nothing.  I saw her with friends...do nothing.  I saw her at the bowling alley...do nothing.  Time will heal the wounds and finding someone else will also help, but not right away.  I swore off dating for awhile and really tried to not be that guy who keeps popping up and trying to get her back.  If you were to get back together the power dynamic would be so weird and you would spend so much energy and anxiety thinking about whether or not she was going to do the same thing again that you would sabotage the relationship.  Do nothing...it will save you in the end.

Makes sense. I am just so scared of how long it will take me to recover. My mind is racing and I canít do anything about it. One moment itís ďeverything will be fine,Ē the next itís like ďmaybe if I wait a month or two I will be detached and I can get back in touch to catch up,Ē then itís like ďWhat could I have done differently?Ē I fear that sometime I will be ďdoing nothingĒ when she is around and my mind will take over again. I know Iím only 2 days removed from it, but I have been so uncomfortable for nearly each of those 48 hours (minus like 7 hours of sleep).

accolay

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #95 on: October 30, 2018, 07:53:28 PM »
Yeah, deek, most if not all of us have been there. She ripped the tape off quickly. Do you think it would have worked better if she had broken up slowly with you?

I dated this girl and she dumped me for... Jesus. No, actually Jesus. She was really religious and although we got along great, really cared for each other, had wonderful times together, it just wasn't ever going to work. It sucked, but it all worked out.

Sorry. It's hard. She had her reasons, and maybe it's you or maybe it's not. It doesn't matter- sorry that you have questions that wont ever be answered. You need to move on. Let the chemicals in your brain recalibrate. Take care of yourself. Work on yourself. Work hard. Be the best person you can be. And don't contact her...

...Or else you'll become her weirdo creepy ex-boyfriend who is this pathetic obsessive guy who didn't move on.

You've got to believe that the Universe will take care of it for you. Maybe she'll date other guys and decide that it really was meant to be and you really were the one that got away? Or maybe you'll actually meet your soulmate? You've got to be open to possibilites.

deek

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #96 on: October 31, 2018, 04:54:31 AM »
I want to stick with the no contact, but is it worth just sending a quick note sometime over the next few days that articulates how I feel? Thereís still this huge weight on my chest and I have to get rid of it somehow. I donít want to make her feel guilty but I just want her to see my perspective a little better.

mrmoonymartian

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #97 on: October 31, 2018, 05:37:43 AM »
I want to stick with the no contact, but is it worth just sending a quick note sometime over the next few days that articulates how I feel? Thereís still this huge weight on my chest and I have to get rid of it somehow. I donít want to make her feel guilty but I just want her to see my perspective a little better.
"Silence is true wisdom's best reply." - Euripides

Kris

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #98 on: October 31, 2018, 05:54:39 AM »
I want to stick with the no contact, but is it worth just sending a quick note sometime over the next few days that articulates how I feel? Thereís still this huge weight on my chest and I have to get rid of it somehow. I donít want to make her feel guilty but I just want her to see my perspective a little better.

No.

You can write the note if you want, but then burn it or stick it in a book or something. Donít send it. Let it go.

deek

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Re: More relationship frustration
« Reply #99 on: October 31, 2018, 05:57:10 AM »
I want to stick with the no contact, but is it worth just sending a quick note sometime over the next few days that articulates how I feel? Thereís still this huge weight on my chest and I have to get rid of it somehow. I donít want to make her feel guilty but I just want her to see my perspective a little better.
"Silence is true wisdom's best reply." - Euripides

Would this be more acceptable if I give myself more time to heal, and then air it out, that way I wonít feel so connected to the situation? In all honesty, we only dated 5 months, and she was unable to open up and would always keep things bottled in, Iím starting to see that now. But I think being on good terms is possible down the line.