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Thread: F23 broke up with me (M23) months after I told her about a friend kissing me

  1. #1
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    F23 broke up with me (M23) months after I told her about a friend kissing me

    My girlfriend and I have been together for 2.5 years. We met while both at home and have gone off to college about 2 hours away from each other. We finished our bachelor's degrees and now are both working on our master's degrees in the same cities we were both in during undergrad.

    My GF seems to have avoidant attachment and I have anxious attachment. This has caused strain at points: reconciliation during fights is difficult for her and she doesn't always respond well for my needs for reassurance. She is, by all accounts, a great and caring person though and tries to make herself vulnerable, but ultimately her upbringing makes her need independence and distance from emotional situations. After being long distance for the entirety of our relationship besides a few holiday breaks, I am living at home while attending the second year of my graduate program and she is about to come home for an internship this fall. This means that we could finally have a chance to have a normal relationship for a few months until she goes 2.5 hours away this spring to finish school.

    I was a D-1 Athlete on a Co-ed sport last year at my new graduate program. I was in classes with another female teammate who also was new at the school. We started out as friends, but had a ton in common. We had more in common than my GF: political views, lifestyle views, education, athletic endeavors, humor, etc. I found her physically and personality-wise attractive, but I have always had staunch opinions on cheating and always have prioritized my relationship. Although my GF didn't care as much about this and actually found it a hassle at points, I always stayed-in, hardly partied and always made sure to Facetime her before bed because I knew that long-distance wouldn't work without staying out of insecurity-inducing situations. At the start of our relationship, we defined cheating as going to someone else to fulfill needs and obviously anything physical.

    I would spend time in class and during team trips with the other girl. we were both new to the school and shared classes so it was easy enough to get along; however, it never got farther than that. She D'Med me once and I had a short response to stop conversation. We didn't have each other's phone numbers or snapchats or anything.

    Meanwhile, my relationship was straining. We had gone a month without seeing each other despite not being terribly far and both having cars. My GF had a pretty full courseload, a job during most weeknights and a weekend job so she could pay for rent and necessities. There was very little time for me and she started to stress and get more and more distant due to the way she handles stress. Additionally, throughout our relationship she has shown symptoms of depression: very negative self-esteem despite being attractive, very low self-worth despite working in healthcare jobs devoted to caring for and improving the lives of others and being intelligent and kind. This would rear its head when she got overwhelmed: her support system is not very good and she begins to withdrawal from everything, most specially me. She believes that she cannot do better or that she is not enough to make me happy and becomes self-destructive threatening our relationship.

    Our team had a spring-break trip down south early spring. I spent some extra time with the other girl while traveling and doing coursework together--all consequences of our proximity of being at the same hotel for a week. Also, the other girl was among my closest friends due to the fact she was the only member of the team in my classes and we both were new to the team so experiencing similar situations. My girlfriend was withdrawing even more--last time this happened we broke up for a day due to her stress before she apologized and asked for me back. Feeling this coming on again, I facetimed her one day. In tears, I explained to her how I was feeling emotionally distant and unimportant. I asked how I can help her feel better and asked if she would be open to talking to a therapist at school to manage her stress or if there was anything I could do differently to help. She was pretty unapologetic, accused me of making her think she was depressed (when she was saying she felt worthless, tired all the time and always doing stuff but not getting anything back), and that our situation would remain the same until she graduated school. She said we could take a break if I wanted so she can get through the spring with the multiple jobs and school--which to me seemed pretty selfish and it wasn't like I was asking for a lot, just for her to reply to my texts a little more promptly and be more open to conversation when we facetimed instead of her shutting off the lights so she could fall asleep easier afterwards.

    With the uncertaininty of my relationship, I was more open to the other girl than ever before. We hung out a bit just the two of us. Nothing happened, just some schoolwork and talking. She always seemed excited to talk to me, which is something I hadn't felt for a while with my GF. There wasn't anything more than some jokes and talking about our sport and our classes.

    We got back and my GF was incredibly apologetic and said she would be different (which was a theme). I was receptive and said we could work it out. Meanwhile, I still had class with the other girl and we still had a few more trips together for competition. The other girl, fully knowing I had a GF, always managed to insert herself when I was feeling insecure and emotionally-distant from my GF. She began texting me pretty often, more than my GF and always replied quickly and kept the conversation going, which never happened with my GF and I always found problematic in a LDR. This kinda continued during the spring. There would be periods where my GF and I spent a lot of time together and things were good for a while and there wasn't much with the other girl. Then there were periods were we were more distant and I was more receptive to the other girl. I found out she had feelings for me and really liked me. I had a conversation with her saying that I liked spending time with her and I was confused by my feelings and didn't want to lead her on. She said that she was fully aware of the situation and it was okay and she would back off if I wanted. The attention made me feel more satisfied emotionally--she filled the gap in my relationship. There were things we could more easily talk about and even things I tried talked about with my GF and she didn't really respond to. I noticed I would pick fights with my GF after spending time with the other girl: like that my GF didn't seem interested in my life or that she wasn't supportive, etc. Eventually, my GF caught on and asked if something was up with me and the other girl. I said "i don't know" and explained how she liked me and that she was a good friend and it was tricky because I didn't want to hurt my relationship with the other girl because we had many mutual friends on the team and in class. She was a little upset but understood that she hadn't been very available with me. Despite this, my GF continued to be on and off available and at the end of the year, me and the other girl ran into each other and ended up going out to eat, getting ice cream and hanging out while I told my GF i was with a friend. At the end, she went into hug me which I was a little uncomfortable with and then she kissed me on the lips out of nowhere and I stopped it saying I have a gf and I can't. Hours earlier, I explicitly told the other girl that I wouldn't cheat on my GF just to make sure intentions were clear, so I was pretty angry at what happened.

    I felt super guilty and she left. Eventually my GF had a break from school and came home. We spent weeks together and it was all good. I was happy. I knew that the other thing would fade because it was summer and we wouldnt have to see each other. I cut off communication. My GF went on my phone and saw texts to the friend I said I spent the night with saying I was with the girl and she freaked out about me lying. She said it wasn't anything to breakup over and that it would be okay, but asked me if anything else happened. Afraid to hurt her more, I said no, but after a few weeks I felt better about our future and incredibly guilty. I told her about what happened and that I stopped it. She was in shock and obviously hurt, but we kept on dating.

    I visited her in her new summer internship and things were good. After a month she said she didn't think she could get past it and can't trust me. I told her that I promise not to do it again and that I cut communication with the other girl. We worked it out. Last week, after not seeing each other or really talking due to me being on vacation and her being busy with her internship, I visited her with a friend who came to see me. She was a bit off, but she seemed alright. I mentioned that classes started next week again (meaning that I would have to see the other girl again). She seemed off the rest of the time but with my friend there we couldn't talk. I visited other friends and couldn't Facetime at night. She became more distant by text and refuted having anything wrong.

    We were both coming home for the last weekend (about 15 min away from each other) and on the car ride back, after not talking on the phone or Facetime for days, she said that she wanted to be honest and that we could talk on the car ride or in person. I said lets talk now and we can finish the conversation in person. She said that she couldn't trust me anymore: not that I had done anything else during our relationship to make her doubt me, but that the incident was causing too much stress and anxiety for her. It was making her too sad. She said that she was just someone who held grudges and that I wasn't continuing to do anything untrustworthy, but she just couldn't handle it. My car had just gotten rear-ended moments before and I was in the midst of an hours long drive, so I was a bit unable to handle the situation as well as I could. I reassured her that I wouldn't do anything else and anything that she needed I would do (access to phone, social media, location tracker) and that I am so sorry and that I regret it terribly and if anything it showed me how much I valued our relationship. She said that she needed a break or a breakup because she knew I wasn't a fan of the idea of the break--this was never really officially decided. She also told me she knew something about what happened that I didn't know she knew. There were minor details that I may have glossed over or may have forgotten (the incident was three months ago), but nothing totally material. I asked what it was and she refused to tell me. Saying that it was my chance to come clean and that telling me would defeat the purpose. I said there was nothing: maybe small things, but nothing I purposefully held onto. I told her that i told the other girl I wouldn't cheat right before she kissed me, which i hadn't told her. Instead of being positive about telling the other girl that, she was negative and thought that meant I thought something would happen--when i was just making sure it was clear I wasn't crossing a physical boundary. I began to get a little mad saying that it would be terrible to not know what piece of information is the cause of this and that I would just keep wondering if it was even real. She said that she doesn't owe me anything (actually i gave her money to help her out, clothes, a bed, bedding, etc that she hasn't returned, but that has nothing to do with this). I think the whole thing may have been a game to try to get me to divulge stuff, but there isn't anything else to really say. There are some minor details, but most of which I forgot or became blurred and really nothing consequential. I thought it may be a test. She said that she was done with this. I was having trouble hearing her in the car and said that we could talk more when I get back that evening or saturday morning which she agreed to. I got home and she said she couldn't meet. The next day I texted her and she said she was busy. She said she could meet me for a minute while she was somewhere so I got there but she had left saying that I didn't text her in time and her phone died. She was a few minutes away and I asked if we could meet at all and she said that she just wasn't up for it, but sorry I drove all the way there. That was Saturday. I didn't reply to the message. I sent an email to my school asking to switch classes to get out of the class I was with the other girl thinking proximity to this girl was the problem. I also blocked her on everything a week ago which I told my GF on the phone during the "break-up talk" but she didn't believe. I forwarded the email I sent to the school to her to let her know I was trying, but didn't send anything else. We haven't really communicated and I feel like she ultimately owes me a talk since our phone talk was pretty short. We've dated for years and to break-up on the phone seems foolish to me. She is back at her internship, but is gonna be home this weekend and will be home for the fall the following weekend.

    I am not really sure where we stand right now, which is extra difficult to me. I feel like I can get the relationship back. We were finally going to be minutes away and she was going to work in the city I have school, so she could always be on campus when I had class at night. I am totally open to living my life under the magnifying glass--I am open to fully divulging interactions and making any changes necessary for her to believe me. This whole thing has rattled my self a bit--I always believed I was super-monogamous and good with commitment, but our rough patch just really highlighted an emotional need. Instead of potentially breaking up because she wasn't meeting my emotional needs, I found them elsewhere briefly. In some sense it is emotional cheating, but I saw it as relying on my social network and justified the fact it was okay because no physical boundaries were broken, up until that final kiss I quickly shut down. At the end of the day, the other girl started off as a friend and grew to my closest friend at that school--it was a grey area for me. I enjoyed the attention and feeling positivity rather than being dragged down by the negativity my girlfriend sometimes had and the lack of emotional intimacy.

    Although, it may be foolish, I definitely would like to work this out with her. We have had a very serious relationship, lived in plenty of different places, worked many different jobs and attended different schools--there have been many obstacles and this just seems like another to me. I haven't heard from her since saturday night when she said she wasn't up to me, but I am honestly not sure how final this is or if she just needs time to think and we are on a break. I am still her fb photo, we are still friends on social media and although not totally receptive to me she will respond to my messages. She still has all my stuff and we left the conversation at a point where it didn't seem final... i mean on the phone after 2.5 years and driving to the same place. I know me going back to school is the source of this, but we had a solid relationship and I wanted to give it a chance to evaluate us once we closed the distance which would be this fall.

    I am thinking I give her some space to cool-off and I think if I get through the week of school, then maybe she will realize that me being there doesn't mean that something will start off again with the other girl.

    I am hoping for some advice on how to handle this.

    TLDR: Rough patch in 2.5 year long LDR relationship with Anxious (me)-Avoidant (her) tendenices, got close to classmate who kissed me and I stopped it and cut her off. Told gf and tried to make it work, things improved for a couple months, but she just said she was done and "needed a break or a breakup" after she couldn't trust me. Likely sparked by my return to school, but I changed classes to be in classes without her. Things seem a little open-ended right now, need advice, currently trying NC until she returns home to non-long distance for good in 10 days.

  2. #2
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    Sorry to hear this. It sounds like dating this way became an insufferable chore. Enjoy your freedom and the girl you have your eye on.

  3. #3
    Platinum Member Rose Mosse's Avatar
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    This isn't merely a rough patch. It's a distancing between two people eventually leading to some type of cheating or serious dysfunction. You mentioned it yourself that it "highlighted an emotional need" (5th parag. from the bottom, going backwards/upwards in the write up). In this 5th paragraph it seems you have a fairly good idea of what happened but I think you are in denial and grasping desperately to reclaim what you feel you've lost. The issue is that both of you have been limping along for awhile and your girlfriend was not fulfilling your needs in the type of relationship you're looking for. You're still in denial and panic and you aren't ready to let go. She's been a comfort blanket for you for a long time.

    I think you are afraid of being independent and a free agent as you've been in a relationship for a long time with the mindset of a middle-aged married man. There is no right or wrong here in what you wish to do - this is largely relative and I don't feel that either of you are reckless enough to put the other at risk in any way. You both seem old(er), educated and worldly despite your naivete and are both seemingly oblivious to how fragile relationships and people in general really are. You did reference this again in the 5th paragraph from the bottom.

    I thought the other girl's (your friend you go to competitions with) instincts about you were bang on. It's too bad she chose to use them to her own end and didn't seem to care about the long term effect it would have on you and the guilt you might have had engaging in any form of close relationship or friendship. Perhaps it's an indicator of another type of naivete, her opportunistic inclination and predatory desire to latch on to a weak link and break it at any cost. She seems impulsive and without much care for anyone but herself. I'm sorry you had to be a part of that. Birds of a feather will flock together. Enjoy your time with her (with your eyes wide open).

    Best to dust yourself off, take responsibility for your actions as you already have and I would be cautious about hanging onto a relationship that has shown itself to be on its last legs for awhile. I understand much of the time both of you were long distance partners but I don't think you were happy in it. If you continue to insist on the relationship and getting it back, I wonder if it may be a bit like trying to resurrect the dead or like a Frankenstein coming back to life - moving and breathing but not really living (a shadow of the real thing).

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    What are the few details you forgot?

    The fact that you skimmed over these details leads me to believe it's something significant.

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    I can tell you are overthinking this. The whole relationship is over. Distance does not make the heart grow fonder.

    In fact, if you were honest with yourself, you'd admit your attraction to the new girl.

    It really doesn't take pages and pages of writing to get there.

    You're young, in college, and supposed to be having fun. A relationship should not be drudgery--especially at this time in your life.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member SherrySher's Avatar
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    Your girlfriend did the right thing breaking up with you...you were spending far too much time with this other girl and in many ways, I feel sorry for the other girl.
    You lead her on and kept getting way too close and giving her confusing messages.

    I honestly don't think you're mature enough right now to be good to any woman.

    You don't understand what boundaries mean, what loyalty means and and you certainly don't understand what it means to focus on ONE woman and be good to ONE woman.

    Until you grow up a little, it's probably best you leave the women alone.

  8. #7
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    Your relationship was already on thin ice when you started turning to this other girl, OP. You felt the distance; your girlfriend felt the distance. You two weren't able to find a way to make it work.

    The other girl isn't even the original source of all this, in my opinion. She was a catalyst in a break-up that was already coming. You and your girlfriend were growing apart and not wanting the same things from each other. I do agree with some others here that you were spending too much time with her, and it was skating a fine line between friendship and emotional cheating. But do I think your relationship would have lasted, even if she'd never come into the picture? It doesn't sound like it.

    It seems the relationship had essentially run its course, and this was merely the straw that finally broke the camel's back. I don't think I would expect a long-lasting reconciliation here, if I'm being totally honest.

  9. #8
    Platinum Member Andrina's Avatar
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    When there is an emotional disconnection with your SO, you are vulnerable to an emotional affair with someone you see regularly, at school or work. No improvements were made by communicating your discontent with your gf. Many couples grow apart when they've entered the union in their late teens or early twenties. This is a time where people are still learning about themselves, evolving into a more mature adult. Don't feel like you've wasted these years together. It worked for a while and you had enjoyable times, so keep those beautiful memories.

    I would accept that it's over, because two people who really care work through their problems together instead of taking breaks or breaking up. This is a pattern that won't stop if you two got back together. She dipped her toe in the water for a one-day break up, and now she's had the courage to do it for real. It's hard to go without a person you've had daily contact with, but you will learn to enjoy a new chapter in your life, given time and distance away from her.

    You did cross relationship boundaries. A person of the opposite sex with whom you share chemistry with is the last person you should be close friends with while exclusive with someone else. On top of that, you should have gone no contact after that girl told you of her feelings. Not ethical.

    If you're thinking of going out with her at some point, you have rose-colored glasses on. She has no respect for "taken" people. She crossed an ethical boundary, and is not hiding her poor ethics. I saw those types of vultures during my years, with women trying to flirt with/steal my boyfriends when I was a younger woman. I, myself, have a feeling of sisterhood with other women, and would never go after a man who is taken. I have self-respect and respect for others. You still have a lot more life to experience if you think your "friend" will make a good partner.

    Take a year to yourself to be solo, clear your head, drama free. I wished I'd experienced more of the single life in my twenties. I got married far too young and now regret that decision. Good luck in your education, preparing for a wonderful career.

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    Platinum Member smackie9's Avatar
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    The only person you haven't been honest with is with yourself. The distance should had been viewed as a test of how dedicated you are to your relationship...you failed and for good reason. You finally met someone who ticks off all your boxes, a more truer match. Sure I get it, you have invested immensely with your GF but, that isn't a reason to keep dating her. You are fooling yourself with every word in your post. You are afraid of the unknown, you have never known anything different from your GF, and being with your GF is safe and familiar, ya I get it. It's tough. Your GF has had a think, and she knows she should have kicked you to the curb, but she too is afraid of the unknown. You broke that trust, your relationship didn't stand up to the distance test, so why should she think any differently this time around. It's time to admit you really like this new girl, but you are afraid to move on from what is familiar. What is lost, can be gain with someone else.

    The reason she hasn't deleted you yet and packed up yer stuff is that she's too busy with other things to worry about you or your stuff.

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    Thank you, everyone, for the advice. I appreciate you taking the time to give me some feedback. I have been struggling with this greatly and also in the midst of trying to figure out my career path and post-collegiate athletic aspirations. I believe this played into the stress I felt in our relationship.

    I partly agree with the sentiment that our relationship was lacking and on its last legs. My only comprehension with accepting that is the long distance and stress/possible depression my GF had. I realize that my crossing relationship boundaries may have been the catalyst to end a relationship held on by a thread, but I would say much of our difficulty was due to difficulty of her to reassurance me and my inability to remain patient with the lack of attention that I sometimes received. Surely, I am looking at the relationship through rose-colored glasses, but I believe that even without that bias there was a chance of long term success. Although there were certainly difficulties, we both shared similar fundamental beliefs and long-term vision--that just got lost on me, which is my own responsibility. I agree that I am a bit immature. I am only 23 and have been managing on finding myself while trying to grow with my SO. I believe that the other girl represented a different life-path, which I found attractive at the time. I felt somewhat stuck at the moment and this was a window opening.

    The one day that we broke up my GF was under inordinate amount of stress. She had just started grad school with more intense work and working during the weekend. She moved into another family's house who she barely knew, so she was socially isolated and unhappy. She began withdrawing which prompted my pursuit which further stressed her. It took hours until we reconciled and she realized it was a mistake. She quickly changed her photos and removed me from social media--unlike this time. She has ample free time now.. works 8 hours and then goes home alone with no friends in the area.

    As for the other girl, I have recently become very resentful. I cut her off about 3 months ago when I told my GF. No texts, calls, snapchats or seeing each other in person. We still followed each other on social media, but I removed her just before my GF and I took a break/broke up. I believe a lot of the worry my GF had was me returning to classes and having to see the other girl. I changed a class so I wouldn't be with her and its been three days and I haven't seen her--our class days barely overlap. The other girl knew fully I had a GF. She became opportunistic, asked my friends about how my relationship was doing to try to pick at its vulnerability, always texted me first and asked to hang out, and even one night (while out with others) tried to get me more drunk hoping something would happen. On top of that, hours after I told her I would never cheat on my GF, she kissed me. I also found out now she is calling me a sleezebag and that I treated my GF horribly and she is glad we didn't end up dating... this indiscretion of mine definitely hurt my GF, I had always been extremely good to my GF a part of the reason I was feeling neglected in the relationship. It was clear I was having trouble long distance with my GF--she tried and succeeded, albeit months later, to ruin to.

    Although I did give the other girl a set of confusing signals, I was also highly confused. I tried to be fair. I told her I had a girlfriend and I never complained about my gf or relationship to her. 99.99% (besides that one talk) of our communication was just about normal everyday things. My GF was around, the other girl had seen her. I did not try to hide her at all.

    Although perhaps delusional, I remain hopeful and rather confident that we will reconcile. I know I am most likely in denial. She mentioned before she will be returning home (10 min away) this weekend and then she is home the following weekend until January. We have never been in the same place this long--I was very excited to take this step and evaluate our relationship. Over the phone, last we talked she said we could talk in person. It seemed like she wanted a break, but she knew I didn't like the idea of that--although I think it would be good in a situation like this. We never really talked more about this, we became a little argumentative and she quickly said she was done but we could talk more. It doesn't exactly seem like closure to a long term relationship. I am still her photos and she is on social media frequently, she has a lot of my stuff and owes me money I gave her so she didn't need to ask her parents for some because she is too embarrassed. I was her best friend, the person she was closest to by far, I find it hard to believe she will go home 10 minutes away from me and not be open to the possibility of getting back together. I, and others who know her better, believe that she is just overwhelmed with me returning to classes and that she will come around once I get through a week and she realizes that me being there isn't that bad. I am prepared to live under a microscope, have already went NC with the other girl, switched my classes and work through the trust-building process. Again, this is maybe delusional, but I strongly believe that this will pan out.

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