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Thread: LDR - Will he come back?

  1. #1
    Member mecastillo1987's Avatar
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    LDR - Will he come back?

    My ex and I met online and had a serious relationship for two-and-a-half years. I work as a lawyer in Asia (age 32) and he works as a freelance graphic artist in the US (also age 32). We were surprised to find out we both had the same ethnicities and since meeting, we never stopped talking/video-chatting everyday. This was my first time experiencing a long-distance relationship (LDR) and this was his second, for context.

    I know this part may seem sickening to hear... but at the first year of our relationship, we constantly expressed to each other how our connection was like none other. We were both artists and found creative ways to express our affections for each other online. Chemistry was the best I've ever experienced in all my 32 years. Everywhere I went, he was with me. Everyone in my life, he knew. We talked about our dreams, our vulnerabilities, our lives, our pains, everything.

    During the span of the relationship, I visited him twice (1 month per year). I got along really well with his family and friends. He and I did new things together, traveled a lot, and even exchanged promise rings. A few months later, just as he was saving up to come visit me, he broke up with me.

    Now, during the seven (7) months leading up to the break-up, our relationship was strained. We argued a lot. Both big and petty things. (I wanted him to visit me as well and meet my family. I wanted to see him actually save up money from his freelance job and show me how our relationship could surpass the online world, etc.) At the time, I felt like I was truly in the right and did my absolute best to be transparent and healthy in communicating. As amazing as our connection was, he seemed to have had difficulties with money, finding a career, and sustaining the vision for the relationship on a 'realistic' level (bridging the gap.) During 2 separate occassions, I admit I lost my temper and said some hurtful things because he would stonewall me or immediately discontinue the conversation. He was able to pick up a job serving food at a bar to help with savings, and I was very supportive.

    In truth, he tried breaking up with me once before he ended things, but we always managed to "work through it" hours later or the following day. Perhaps we were codependent without knowing it. There was a good mix of both happy days and bad days, until the bad days became the majority. There was no cheating or abuse involved, but resentment and emotional distance.

    The day before we broke up, he said to me that although he noticed I did everything "right" towards the end (we were no longer fighting), his heart was no longer in it anymore.

    When we had a "closure" talk, I asked him what I did wrong to improve upon. He said that the 3 things which stood out to him during the last year were:

    1. I made him feel like he was not enough/he didn't do enough,
    2. My emotional outbursts got pretty overwhelming for him, and
    3. My insecurities manifested in ways that made him question if our values were aligned.

    He also said the distance made things worse, and upon long introspection, he needed to learn how to exist outside of a relationship and stop seeking validation from one (get his '****' together). He said he could no longer reciprocate the things I willingly did for him, and that I ultimately deserved better.

    It was a swift break-up. He just told me very calmly that he didn't want to be in a relationship anymore and that he was no longer happy. I was anxious. I begged and pleaded immediately after (I know, super wrong move) but I truly did not want to lose him. He was my bestfriend and I told him that our conflicts should make us stronger as a unit and not fall apart. But he simply told me to respect his decision, especially since it was the "hardest decision" he ever had to make, for himself.

    I went No Contact a week after our break up (05 June 2019). I was a wreck, grieving from the trauma, but I knew I had to respect his decision.

    He reached out to me 2 weeks after No Contact only to say: "I hope you are being kind to yourself. Please remember you are whole."

    The following day, (I initiated the conversation) we asked each other how we were doing. He said he was struggling emotionally because he felt like our connection truly was amazing and that he "genuinely missed and still misses" me "very much".

    Seeing that we were doing okay with the communication so far, I sent him a video (like the ones we used to make for each other) where I wrote the words: "It's still you" on a whiteboard. *cringe*

    He replied coldly, "Thank you for sharing your truth." He also asked me if talking to him was good for my healing. My anxiety got to the best of me and I ended up apologizing for the video and asking him if he had completely lost feelings. We told each other how we would love each other 'forever' and have given each other the best days of our lives.

    But what hurt the most was that he told me he wouldn't reconcile with me at all... and even if the future was uncertain for reconsideration, he was neither "hoping for, working towards, or considering" us being together in the future. I was devastated. It had been almost 4 weeks after our break up, and his decision was still the same. I was back to square one, crying again. I eventually asked him politely not to reach out to me anymore to which he agreed. This took place 8 days ago. Yesterday, he unfollowed me on social media and deleted our pictures together.

    Is it completely over for us at this point? 😞 I still truly want him back. If this is no longer an option, how do I move on?

    (Please be gentle?)
    Last edited by mecastillo1987; 07-02-2019 at 08:44 AM. Reason: Added details

  2. #2
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    Most likely, he has chosen to search for (or has already found) someone he can see more than 30 out of 365 days a year.

    A screen and a voice on a speaker is no substitute for a live human you can hold and hug and actually interact with in person.

    At some point, anyone would get tired of not being able to do those things.

    I would imagine you want that too.

    I'm sorry for your pain. But it's really better to meet someone you can see in person regularly.

  3. #3
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    I'm sorry if I sound patronising, but I just don't really understand how basically a 98% online relationship can be "serious"? I understand that you can still get to know each other through messages, video chatting, phone calls and so on. I can see that you can still know that you have a lot in common, such as the creativity you shared. So that part was real. However, as far as calling it a serious relationship, or even an actual romantic relationship, I wonder whether you could actually call it that. To me it seems more like a friendship.

    You did share the common interests and perhaps emotional connection, but with spending only very short amounts of time in person in 2.5 years, I don't think you could have truly known each other.

    To really know someone I think you need to spend significant amounts of time together. Months, if not years. The problem with predominantly talking online and meeting only briefly is that you have a very one-sided view of that person. You don't see how they behave in everyday situations, don't see their attitudes towards everything in life, how they are around all their friends and family. You simply don't end up in enough situations and events with that person to see what they're really like.

    E.g. imagine if you talked to someone online and they seemed lovely. Then you go on a date in real life and they start acting really stingy about spending money on the date. That's not something you could have known online because it's a very closed off environment. Do you see what I'm getting at?

    I do understand why your ex decided that he didn't want to continue being "in a relationship" with you. After 2.5 years he probably realised that he needed more from it. I think connecting online can be good for a friendship, but for a romantic relationship it's just not enough. You need to hold, kiss, hug that person and actually spend time together face-to-face.

    I know that you wanted him to visit you in Asia and to start thinking about your future together. But obviously he was not actually in love with you or see a future with you. If he did then I think he would have at least made an effort to visit you in your country.

    May I ask why you had a 2.5 online relationship? Are you not able to meet any men where you actually live? If you're an artist, do you not meet other creative people through your work or hobbies? Or even online dating to find men in your own area?

  4. #4
    Member mecastillo1987's Avatar
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    I can sense this being the most possible realization for him too. I always brought up the possibility of closing the gap with him for good but we also knew it was going to be incredibly difficult and would take a huge sacrifice. Perhaps I'm being foolish and stuck in the fantasy, but I was sincerely willing to put in the work for us and relocate for him. Thank you for being direct and kind with your advice and thoughts on the matter... I just wish I knew how to keep moving forward after having invested and poured so much of myself into us...

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  6. #5
    Member mecastillo1987's Avatar
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    It's alright... I do understand how this may not seem like a real relationship to some people. I've been in 4 different serious relationships throughout my life (two of which I lived in with my exes) and indeed, nothing beats having that person with you physically. It's a feeling I cannot describe. I wish I knew how to. I'm not after money or citizenship. I'm genuinely in-love with him as a person.

    Though brief, we spent as much time as we could together and always made it a point to be true and show each other our "not-so-attractive" sides (farts, fights, weird habits, etc.) It still felt organic, yet for a limited time.

    I grew up living in different places since childhood (my parents worked for the government) so I have quite a bit of monochopsis. English is my first language, and having been exposed to so many different cultures during my formative years, dating locally can be a bit of a challenge, although still pleasant.

    Thank you for your input on the matter and helping me see things through a different perspective.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member Andrina's Avatar
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    Starting a relationship as an LDR, you now see it takes so much longer to find out a person doesn't match you in all the major ways. His lack of financial stability is something important to you, and apparently not to him. If this was a local guy, you would've probably found this out by month 6.

    When you feel the need to nag someone, as you did to him to have him save to come your way, it means the relationship isn't right for you. You nagged him because you wanted him to change to suit you. He has the right to be who he is, and you have the right to walk away because you will only be happy if he changes, and most people don't change in major ways like this.

    The first mistake you made is putting in effort twice to see him before waiting for him to reciprocate in a timely manner. Because as the saying goes, "Your feet take you to where your heart is." His didn't, either because he doesn't care enough, or perhaps he did but isn't a logical person and didn't have the foresight of thinking how he couldn't afford a LDR, because yes, in person visits are necessary.

    It will take you 3 times longer to find a longterm partner if you're going to continue with LDRs. He is not your match. Take this as a learning experience and date locally.

  8. #7
    Member mecastillo1987's Avatar
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    That does make complete sense. We always talked about it 4 months into the LDR, and I genuinely felt like he saw things the same way I did. It wasn't until much later when I didn't see him initiating talks about wanting to meet my family and friends too that I began getting worried... I appreciate your advice. Thank you.

    I'm struggling now with... rebooting my system. Having enjoyed this connection, however online, in all aspects of my life for 2.5 years... He was constantly in my ears and head... (phone = home/work/everything in between) it felt like easy habit to simply reach for a piece of technology and connect to someone. It's as if I needed to install a completely different OS in my body now just to function through the grief. 😞

  9. #8
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    Originally Posted by mecastillo1987
    That does make complete sense. We always talked about it 4 months into the LDR, and I genuinely felt like he saw things the same way I did. It wasn't until much later when I didn't see him initiating talks about wanting to meet my family and friends too that I began getting worried... I appreciate your advice. Thank you.

    I'm struggling now with... rebooting my system. Having enjoyed this connection, however online, in all aspects of my life for 2.5 years... He was constantly in my ears and head... (phone = home/work/everything in between) it felt like easy habit to simply reach for a piece of technology and connect to someone. It's as if I needed to install a completely different OS in my body now just to function through the grief. 😞
    It's understandable that it hurts but really I think you need to be careful in thinking that something is a serious relationship and imagining there is a future. I'm sorry to sound negative but you seemed sure there was a future and you barely even spent any time together in real life. I think you were viewing the whole thing through rose-coloured glasses. A relationship takes so much more than just talking. You simply can't build that in only two months in real life. And he had never met anyone in your country or visited your life at all.

    Are you scared to meet men in real life? There must be some reason why you pursued this and closed yourself off to all other men. When I used to do online dating, I had men from overseas message me and I didn't reply because I didn't think a long distance relationship was going to work. I preferred to focus on men I could be with physically.

  10. #9
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    These oncreen things never work. You need to be able to interact with someone physically on a regular basis. The relationship was a fantasy.

    Find someone local that you can have a real relationship with.

  11. #10
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    Originally Posted by mecastillo1987
    That does make complete sense. We always talked about it 4 months into the LDR, and I genuinely felt like he saw things the same way I did. It wasn't until much later when I didn't see him initiating talks about wanting to meet my family and friends too that I began getting worried... I appreciate your advice. Thank you.

    I'm struggling now with... rebooting my system. Having enjoyed this connection, however online, in all aspects of my life for 2.5 years... He was constantly in my ears and head... (phone = home/work/everything in between) it felt like easy habit to simply reach for a piece of technology and connect to someone. It's as if I needed to install a completely different OS in my body now just to function through the grief. 😞
    But doesn't having someone in your actual physical presence sound more appealing? Or maybe you prefer the impersonality of electronic communication because you can avoid actual physical and emotional vulnerability?

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