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I have no idea what to do now, but I've brought this all on myself


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Well its certainly been a long time since I was last here. But desperate times and all that.

 

So, we went to university together and I've known her since about October '03. Over time we grew to be very close friends, and she was always there when I needed someone to talk to. A year or so back she started dropping hints, which I assumed I was imagining or misunderstanding, so I never acted upon them. She told me sometime last year that she used to be interested in me but implied she wasn't any more. In January this year she asked me out one evening. And since then things seemed to be going well.

 

So we can fast forward to Wednesday. A bit of background is going to be necessary here. I work at a bank at the moment, and for the last 3 weeks I have had to help out in the call centre, which I find incredibly stressful. The main problem being I previously worked in a jobcentre (Uk welfare/benefit thing) call centre, and the constant stress through my 11 months there affects me in a very bad way.I may as well give the worst example - when faced with a man talking about depression because his terminally ill 7 year old daughter had died, I just didn’t care. I felt no compassion, I just thought to myself that he should get over it, and I hated the person that I’d become while there. And it still bothers me know that I used to be like that, that I used to think those things. So being thrown back into a similar environment these past couple of weeks has been more difficult for me than most, because it serves as a reminder of what I used to be like.

 

After work wednesday I was meant to be seeing her. I was looking forward to it since I was feeling very stressed out. But at the end of the day I got a message saying she'd forgotten a hair appointment and had to cancel. I was annoyed, but that was based mainly on stress. I left my phone on silent rather than reply with something sarcastic. A bit later I notice another message "just been in car accident, am fine, just need to ring insurance". Ok, so my mind sees this and thinks "she says she's fine, she's probably busy either ringing insurance/talking to the other drivers still/actually still got to the hairdressers". So I figure I'll give her a bit of time. At this point it genuinley hasn't occurred to me that she is going to be a bit shaken. I don't know why. She said she's fine, I take that is she is fine. Minor incident, nobody is hurt. Don't bother her just now.

 

I ring her up later. This is where it starts to go badly. I haven't thought about what to say here so I open itup with something like "whats the damage then?". Theres some wonderful improvisation on my part. The next few minutes of talking invovle a number of things, and with me just running my mouth like I normally do and not thinking about the words coming out of it, I drift into actually saying sorry for not calling sooner, I was a bit annoyed about thing. completely forgetting to mention that I also thought she would be busy and wouldnt want me annoying her. And that I didn't notice the message straight away. Stress is a wonderful thing. I wish I dealt with it better. And I wish I thought first and spoke second.

 

Couple of hours later, I get the next message. I can't believe you said that, you don't care, anything could have happened to me, you're guilt tripping me when I'm shaken, It's over. I can't get hold of her on the phone to talk since she won't, so we exchange a few more messages about how this is final and we can't work it out and other stuff has been bothering her anyway and that something hasn't been right for a while . I keep trying to explain everything fully, apologise for being a like that, explain some more and whatnot but that seems to be it.

 

I had no idea what she was talking about with these other things, my housemate got an answer though - little things bother her like I'm too negative (I have been since the day she met me), sometimes when we go out I don't say much (this happened one time) and I acted weird on her birthday (I don't deal well with crowds of people I don't know, and she wanted to go clubbing wheras I hate the places with a passion, so I was... I dunno, afraid to go there with them and drag the mood down). But really, this is all stuff she already knew about me. she knows me inside out.

 

So I think thats my story. I get that I upset her, I feel terrible for the way I handled that, but something still doesn't add up for her to call the whole thing off citing all these other things as reasons when she knew me so well. At the moment I've got a 2000 word thing I need to email her, explaining everything and telling her exactly how I feel, but I don't know when to send it. I really don't actually know what to do now. I've lost this relationship and I've lost one of my closest friends. She's refusing to speak to me... I just don't know what to do

 

Feel free to tell me its all my fault

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Oh dear. Well, it's not TOTALLY your fault, obviously her message about the crash was a bit too brief (but then it would be if she was dealing with stuff). Then again if I had a car crash I would RING you, you would have heard the distress in her voice and no doubt have rushed to the scene. Texting is a rubbish method of communication isn't it? Sometimes if I produce a long and chatty text to my partner asking him loads of questions, he just says 'have a lovely evening' That means he's had a terrible day and is also rubbish at texting, but that's another point and thes are just 'what ifs'.

 

What to do? 2000 words is too much, she is not a lecturer needing to mark something Because this type of communication has failed you so far, pick out the most important things you want to say to her (it's all there in your posting here) and GO AND SEE HER. I know she won't necessarily welcome it, but this may be your only chance to retrieve things before there is no return. Make it heartfelt and accept there are things you have to change and are willing to work on within this relationship. If she cares about you (and knows you as you say) she will understand that part of this is about the call centre stuff.

 

However, I must say that if the reasons she gave for breaking up (and they seem a bit lame) were just excuses and your lack of response was conveniently 'the last straw', she will not respond positively to your conversation and it may be over. Anticipate this though so you don't go to pieces. Be dignified and prepared to compromise.

 

You are not the only one at fault here, but swallow your pride if you want this girl back. Her response will guide you in deciding whether it's WORTH having her back. Good luck.

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Well, going to see her isn't really an option. She still lives with her family, and there is no way in hell I will be allowed in that house to talk to her. And it seems that until she's decided she's not speaking to me until she's ready. I guess maybe that email is rather long, but as I read it, everything in it seems necessary. And right now its the only way I have to tell her what I need to tell her.

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Do you want to summarise it so we can see it first - often if a written communication is sent, the tone is absolutely vital - not clingy, not pleading, not too cold - it depends on the person you're sending it to and the circumstances. But another problem is, and hardly anyone would advise you to email rather than arrange (somehow) to see her is that she may read, re-read, analyse, over-analyse and get a very different message to the one you intended....so if you like put a few key points in here and we can have a look.

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Right, I've cut it back to 1700 now, but I really dont think I can lose any more without cutting content. I think the tone is alright - apologetic but hopeful. I know its hardly ideal but if she's not going to answer the phone and I can't drop by her home, I don't really have a choice.

 

So... summary. Lets give it a go

 

Opening

 

I’m not sure where to begin this. You don’t want to talk to me, so I’m writing this. This is how I feel, and this is my attempt to express that to you as openly as I can.

 

1st para (115 words)

 

Re: how much I've enjoyed thel ast 4 months, how I have feelings for her, I don't want to hurt her, the she makes me happy and I enjoy making her happy

 

2nd para (116)

 

About how long and how well we know each other, and how I can get my words into a complete mess and come out with a completely different meaning

 

3rd para (602)

 

Everything about the other night, not too different to how it is here but addressed to her

 

4th para (486)

 

Regarding the reasons she sent to my housemate for the breakup, how she already knows these things about me and knew them before we got together, asking why she wasn't open with me, stating how it looks like she's just picked a few examples of evenings that were not too great, and mentioning a selection of good evenings we had together as a comparison of how that outwieghs the bad.

 

5th para (212)

 

about how I've not just lost a relationship but also a very cose friend, how the relationship means a lot to me, how I think we have a good thing and its worth working for, how she is the one I want (she did say in one of the messages she can't be the person I want her to be), and it isn't too late to sit down, talk and work it out

 

end

 

I guess after telling you this, what I’m asking is that after everything, after knowing each other for so long, and taking so long to get to this stage, that you’ll at least talk to me about this with an open mind. And maybe find it in yourself to think about trying to work through this. There isn’t really anything else I can add to this. I would like you to think about what I’ve said, but I don’t really want to discuss this via text or email, so when you’re ready would you either pick up the phone or let me know if you want to meet me somewhere? If nothing else, I would like to have a proper conversation with you.

 

Is that what you meant by summary?

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I think you should give some time and space before you send. If even a week or a few days. I wouldn't go into much details about how great you are together and how much your past means to you because that's how YOU see it, and its only trying to convince her. If she feels the same way, she will also see how great your past is now. I think all you need to say is, I'm sorry for how I acted, I have been stressed with work and I no it is not an excuse but I think this is just a misunderstanding. Don't go into sobby details about how much you love her and how great you are together. I have done all of that, and have done it way too soon. It seriously just pushes them away.... Sometimes we have to do the opposite of what we want or feels right. Why not accept it? Say you are right, I never acted how I should have, I have no excuse but this is what happened in my eyes. No amount of I love you's will bring someone back. You really need to work on your tone of that letter. Don't be cold, but don't be needy. Don't promise to be a friend (your not ready for that, and do you want to help her move on?).

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Don't give her a reason and an excuse why you didn't care... because you obviously didn't care! Fess up to your mistake and apologize to her in person. Don't write any letters to her. My friend, that is the last thing she wants from you now....

 

Right now, she's obviously very upset with you, so go to her (in person) and apologize. Do so without reason or excuse, and I hope you'll be genuine with your emotions, because they will show otherwise if you're not. If she refuses, tell her you want to apologize to her in person. There's no real excuses on not being able to see her. Make the time, perhaps some place else if you can't go to her place.

 

She wrote you a quick message in lieu of giving you a call because she might have been occupied with the accident scene, what with police being there and all, details being exchanged and so forth. In this instance an SMS message will suffice, she could have been asked a great deal of detail by whatever authorities that were present then.

 

Nothing is more appreciated then being shown that you're being loved.

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I agree. I think you should give it a couple of days until she cools off and then call her and ask to meet. It sounds to me like you need to work on your compassion and perhaps she has sensed over time that she can't really count on you for compassion and help. A true friend comes through for someone and is compassionate in times of trouble. Excuses ring hollow...just acknowledge that you failed her and that you are very sorry about it.

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You have to stop beating yourself up on this. Yes you made a mistake, but she was already half out of the relationship, there's NO WAY if she still had feelings for you that she would not forgive you for this. It is NOT a relationship breaker. OK it seems there were other things that led up to this and you can allocate blame to one side or the other, but honey the writing was obviously already on the wall.

 

Eventually you should ensure you have a physical (not email) encounter (who knows how, she can't stay in her parents' home for ever!) and say you are sorry for making this mistake. That's all you have the responsibility for right now. Keep YOUR friends and family around you if you can - they will reassure you of this too.

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Thats what everyone keeps saying to me but every conclusion I reach... its down to me (beating myself up is one of my specialities). I didn't show her I care. But nobody who knows us saw this coming. Nobody could sense anything. The last time I saw her was last friday, and we were in a pub with some other friends. They all say we seemed fine then. These little things she's mentioning that she says make her feel this isn't right, she knew already. She knows exactly what I am like. and we talked about it before we went out to meet the other people.

 

The people I am talking to are all saying there must be something else. Something she hasn't mentioned. It would make sense. Most people are saying that this isn't break up material (although I struggle to agree with them) and the excuses are rubbish. It does seem she was half out of this relationship when you look at it, but she's been puting on a good act if that is the case.

 

And I know we need physical contact at some point, but its not really an option until she tells me she's ready. I cant exactly start stalking her. I am very confused right now

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She's had doubts about the relationship and you've pretty much confirmed her doubts to her. Do you see where this is headed? You really need to make the time to go and see her. If you wait for her to be ready, you could be setting yourself for more disappointments.

 

An apology comes from the heart and it is done so with a lot of heart, and without reasons or excuses. So in saying that your apology should be offered at the opportune time, which you yourself must make it happen, rather than wait at the chance of her telling you she's ready. She's a human being, and while an apology may never be expected from you - in her mind - wouldn't you want to surprise her anyway? By showing her you've made a mistake which you've owned up to? If anything, she should be appreciative of your turn around more than the apology itself.

 

Be decisive and don't make any more excuses why you can't apologize to her as yet. If the worse comes to being the worse then so be it, you've done the right thing by acknowledging your ways. However, if it turns out right then you'll be more than "just" pleasantly surprised.

 

And as CAD says, wait for a few days before you commit to it, as this will also give you more time to filter your emotions and allow her the time to accept your apology.

 

On D-Day, phone her, and tell her you NEED to talk to her and inform her that it is important that you do so. If she refuses, just go to her anyway, you'll feel a damn sight better after getting it out of your system. A damn sight better than the constant beatdowns you've dolled upon yourself should you appropriate your apology to her schedule and miss out on the chance for a heartfelt apology.

 

I hope it all goes well!!

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You have to stop beating yourself up on this. Yes you made a mistake, but she was already half out of the relationship, there's NO WAY if she still had feelings for you that she would not forgive you for this. It is NOT a relationship breaker. OK it seems there were other things that led up to this and you can allocate blame to one side or the other, but honey the writing was obviously already on the wall.

 

Eventually you should ensure you have a physical (not email) encounter (who knows how, she can't stay in her parents' home for ever!) and say you are sorry for making this mistake. That's all you have the responsibility for right now. Keep YOUR friends and family around you if you can - they will reassure you of this too.

 

I see what you mean, but nobody that knows us saw this one coming. Last time we met up (last friday) everything seemed fine. We had a bit of a talk about a few things, I acknowledged I need to be more open with her and she said we were ok. We met up with a few other friends for a drink and everything seemed perfectly normal. I've asked my friends that knew us and nobody saw anything like this on the cards. It really doesn't add up.

 

She's had doubts about the relationship and you've pretty much confirmed her doubts to her. Do you see where this is headed? You really need to make the time to go and see her. If you wait for her to be ready, you could be setting yourself for more disappointments.

 

An apology comes from the heart and it is done so with a lot of heart, and without reasons or excuses. So in saying that your apology should be offered at the opportune time, which you yourself must make it happen, rather than wait at the chance of her telling you she's ready. She's a human being, and while an apology may never be expected from you - in her mind - wouldn't you want to surprise her anyway? By showing her you've made a mistake which you've owned up to? If anything, she should be appreciative of your turn around more than the apology itself.

 

Be decisive and don't make any more excuses why you can't apologize to her as yet. If the worse comes to being the worse then so be it, you've done the right thing by acknowledging your ways. However, if it turns out right then you'll be more than "just" pleasantly surprised.

 

And as CAD says, wait for a few days before you commit to it, as this will also give you more time to filter your emotions and allow her the time to accept your apology.

 

On D-Day, phone her, and tell her you NEED to talk to her and inform her that it is important that you do so. If she refuses, just go to her anyway, you'll feel a damn sight better after getting it out of your system. A damn sight better than the constant beatdowns you've dolled upon yourself should you appropriate your apology to her schedule and miss out on the chance for a heartfelt apology.

 

I hope it all goes well!!

 

I do see your point, and it probably does look like I'm just trying to make excuses not to go and see her, but I really can't show up at her place out of the blue. Her family would refuse to let me see her... I know them, no good would come of it unless I knew she'd be prepared to speak to me. I wouldn't put it past her mother to call the police if I didn't leave immediately. But I do need to apologise, you're right about that. All I can really do at the moment is ask her to meet up and talk through text since she's not going to answer the phone. But I don't really know how long to leave that. Its been 4 days now, I don't know if its too soon.

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Even though, to you and your friends, it didn't seem like this was coming, in her own mind it might go a way back. Just thinking of what her friend said about her saying you were too negative, etc. and having been 'quiet', and not wanting to go clubbing, gives you the clue that to her the relationship wasn't as great as it was to you.

 

People are often shocked when a partner 'suddenly' wants out of a relationship that seemed great. But the trouble is, people often don't say all the things they really think. A person can get along with you, mainly, can seem happy with you, can act loving towards you, can say they love you and want to be with you forever, but can also not feel those sentiments totally and consistently, and can have negative sentiments along with them. Naturally, they would find it difficult to come out and express to you the negative ones, its easier to tell the other person what they want to hear.

 

So when someone wants out of a relationship, in my opinion its no use thinking, 'there must be some mistake, we had such a great relationhip', and trying to convince the other person they're making a mistake to leave. They may not have told you everything they thought about you, and you must accept that they actually do know what they're doing when they say they want out.

 

Another thing, you might never find out the real reason why a person leaves you.

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This is absolutely spot on. She was unhappy although for her own reasons she might not have wanted to tell people, especially you and her friends.

 

Her actions towards you now are pretty cold and uncaring, refusing to answer the phone when she knows you will be in a state. Her parents sound even worse, like they have no compassion at all (although they will be protective and will probably have heard a completely different side of the story).

 

Offplanet is right.

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It was what she said to my housemate, but whatever. The issue with these reasons she's given is that we've known each other for 6 years, and she knew this stuff about me before she asked me out. Which is why it doesn't really make sense in my mind or anyone else's. She knew me better than anyone, she knew exactly what I am like. If this was some girl I'd met in a bar one night I could understand, but after knowing me this well for this long... like I said, it just doesn't seem to add up. she knew I was pessemistic and quiet, I've always been like that. Its just me. Now its something thats been bothering her for a while (at least thats what she told my housemate, and he doesnt think its the real reason either).

 

And I know her mother will be difficult, its why I'm not going to drop round uninvited. I'd get further talking the wall.

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I quoted this for truth. It doesn't matter if this was said to your housemate, your dog, or to your car; she said these things to someone and it gives insight as to what was bothering her. The claim that you've known each other for 6 years and she knew these things about you so therefore she should have been OK with it in a relationship is a false one my friend. If you believe this, you are going to be very disappointed in future relationships.

 

No matter how long you have known each other, whether for one year or ten years, and how closely, whether as acquaintances or best friends, you cannot always predict exactly how a relationship between you will work out. A relationship is different from a friendship. Different feelings, emotions, and expectations get involved. The reason why so many people agonize about whether they should get involved with their friends is for fear that the stresses of a relationship will not only cause them to break up but to also lose the original friendship; relationships are challenging no matter who enters into them.

 

One hidden expectation that some people have in relationships is that their partner will be emotionally available to them. I know some guys who are like stone walls to the outside world but completely open to their partners. It sounds like she, in part, felt like you were emotionally unavailable and while she may have seen some reserved behavior in you while you were friends hoped/assumed you would open up to her during a relationship. When this doesn't happen, she got frustrated and bolted. Of course, it was not cool of her to keep silent on this until the end, but I'm just trying to add to your awareness that this does indeed make sense, it's simply hard to accept that she would not have spelled it all out to you in time for you to 'fix' it.

 

Others have given you advice about how to approach her and I won't weigh in on that. I would weigh in on encouraging you to find some ways to learn how to be more emotionally open yourself. There are some good books out there; "The Emotionally Unavailable Man," "If Men Could Talk," and "The Five Love Languages" that might be interesting for you to read so that you can understand yourself a little bit better. Best of luck.

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Well, I just got off the phone with her. I thought after this thread, you guys would want to know how it finished.

 

She wasn't overly angry about the accident or what I said. For a short while she was, that was just the straw that brok the camel's back. Essentially, she says it just doesn't feel right for her any more. She doesn't feel what she used to and I feel for her a lot more than she feels for me. She says she can't bring herself to string me along any further in the hope that it gets better, she feels terrible for hurting me, and I deserve better than to be strung along further and hurt more later. And she says she can't explain it any better than that.

 

I just want to say thanks to everyone who took the time to read this story and try to help me out, but as much as this hurts me to say, there was no way to save this. I guess now its a health dose of NC (she's stopped going to the pub we both frequent which I thought was nice of her) and maybe, someday, we'll try to restore our friendship

 

Don't really know how I feel now... releived that we've now spoken, very upset that I can't be with her any more... I guess its time to pick myself up, dust myself down, and get on with life.

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