My boyfriend of 1 1/2 years (we lived together the last year) packed up all his things a week and a half ago, while I was at work, and left me a note saying he was sure he would see me again one day. That was it- after a year of living together and moving to a foreign country together he dropped out of my life one day. I was devastated and am still having an incredibly hard time- I feel so confused and every day I go up and down, I'm angry and sad and lonely and numb and completely drained. I'm far away from family and friends and I can't even talk to people most of the day because of the time difference, I feel really alone. We have a house full of things together back home, it is hard enough to deal with here and I cry and cry when I think about going back home and going through this a 2nd time.

Now that I read all this about commitment phobic people I realize where all his problems stem from. He's 37 and never had a relationship longer than 6 months, when we got together he hadn't dated anyone in a while and said that having time alone, watching everyone around him settle down and be happy, had made him realize what he really wanted, mistakes he had made, etc. I believed him- people can change and I've made lots of mistakes in relationships that I've learned from and wouldn't make again. But after about six months he would respond to any problems- an argument about the laundry, literally anything- by saying he wanted us to break up and not talking to me, not looking at me, but then changing his mind after a few days. He had lots of wrong ideas about relationships- that it is about meeting "the one" and when you do you click perfectly and nothing would ever be wrong, that sort of stuff. He did this twice and then we went to a counselor to try to work things out- I thought and the counselor thought that he just needed to learn a realistic perspective on relationships- his parents are together but haven't eaten dinner together or slept in the same room in 20 years, no one in his family has ever had a relationship for more than a few months. Things were good, then something would happen and he would threaten to leave, this went on over and over again until we went to a counselor here who recommended he go to counseling on his own for why he had problems in relationships, etc. He agreed to go and told me he was totally committed to everything, he told me he felt he was starting to understand relationships and felt ready to get engaged and move towards getting married. Two weeks after that he had a friend come to visit (his best friend is 38, lives with his mother and never even had a 2nd date) and I guess the two of them decided we should break up because the next day they moved all his things out.

It helps me tremendously to read about commitment phobic people because everything in it is an exact description of him. He always had an imaginary girlfriend in mind that I could never measure up to. Sometimes I wonder how this happened, why I couldn't see it before or prevent it, but deep down I know that it's because I am a loving, trusting person, I can forgive and move forward, I choose to see the good in people and while that didn't work for me with him, it would be terrible to let him take that away from me and replace it with his cynical, condescending, frightened, cold view of the world. It's going to take time for me to recover from this but I believe that most people are at heart good and trustworthy- he was just a very sad exception.