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Some quick background on me, since I am new here. I just feel like I need someone who understands, and sometimes my friends and family just don't get it.


So last October I broke up my engagement. I was with my ex for 9 years (since I was 15), and we have moved accross the country together twice. We ended up in North Carolina, where I am in med school and he was a golf pro. Things just were not *right*, and I knew that long ago. I finally got the confidence to break things off with him when I met another guy who made me feel amazing, and like I was the best thing that ever came along.


I know it was a bad way to break up with him, having someone else already in the picture. But I feel like it was exactly what I needed. I never would have had the guts to break things off otherwise, and I am glad I am out of my engagement now, before we actually tied the knot. Now, however, the other guy has broken things off with me, for a variety of reasons I won't get into. 2 months have passed, and while I am over both relationships for the most part, I am struggling with being alone. I have been in a relationship since I was 15, and I just don't know how to do this.


All of my friends are in serious relationships (married, engaged, etc), and I don't know how to be the 3rd wheel, 5th wheel, and so on everywhere we go. Everyone goes home to their significant other and I go home to an empty house. I feel like I am floating, lost, and like I don't have my place in this world anymore. I want my person back. The one who is always there for me, and I am there for them. I want to look forward to coming home to someone and running into their open arms. I want to feel like I have a partner in crime, someone who puts me as their number one. I lost all of that and I don't even know how to meet someone to get it all back. I'm lonely, scared, and sad. I don't even know how to love myself enough to be OK anymore.



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I think you were relying too heavily on these guys to support or validate you. For example, if this wasn't the case and you were not afraid of being alone I think you would have broken things off with the first ex before waiting to find somebody else. This is a pretty clear sign of somebody that feels they need to jump from one relationship right into another.


It is healthy inbetween relationships to give yourself time to refocus and find yourself. I think you kinda just need to look at this period as that. Work on yourself without the stressors that come with a relationship. Set goals you want to meet for yourself so you feel like you are going somewhere as opposed to floating aimlessly. This is also a clean slate where you can change as much as you want to and redefine yourself without having to please an SO.


Wouldn't be a bad idea to spend more time on your friendships. Maybe some girl's nights out?

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I was in a similar situation to you when I was 23 and left my husband - I hadn't been without 'someone' since I was 14. I had a lot of other things going on in my life, too (my father had just committed suicide) but, looking back, I'd say that the couple of years between that and then starting another relationship must have been among the most growthful of my entire life.


This is a time when you really need to decide who you are, what your interests are, what your values are and how you are going to carry all that out. I guess all this is a life-long process, but when you have a real sense of self, you don't NEED someone to validate you. If you are less needy, you are more able to make wise choices and leave relationships which are not right for you. And the more likely you are to have all your needs fulfilled by your relationships.


But all this starts with you ... when you say you do not have a place in the world any more, look upon this as a blessing and an opportunity. It means you have a freedom to find out where you want to be; and act on it - which someone with an already committed life just does not have. Looking to someone else to give you something - a sense of self-worth - which you would ideally be finding for yourself is bound to end in failure.


If you really don't feel able to do this on your own, then see a therapist; otherwise there are loads of online resources about building up self-esteem, and somebody of your obvious intelligence already has many resources at their fingertips. Now you need to realise that - and use them!


Good luck!

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Thank you both for your responses. I am realizing through all of this that I had relied *way* too much on someone else to define who I was and to validate my own being.


It surprised me, because I had always thought of myself as being very strong, independent, etc. You're right though. If I had enough confidence in myself I would not have waited for someone else to come along to end the relationship I was in. I never looked at it that way.


I have amazing friends and family, and I do need to focus on just that as well as focusing on who I am as a person. There are some moments, especially weekends when I have a bit of down time alone that all of that really gets lost and I forget where I am headed in my life.

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