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caveat, your story is inspiring and a great testement to your will power and strength, but was I the only one hoping you would say 'and so in the end we got back together, giving her space was the right thing to do'?? because I am now in that situation......


Let me explain, I started seeing my girlfriend 15 months ago, im 25, she is 19, her parents moved away from the area we live so she had to move in to her works accommodation, she is a trainee specialized chef, which involves a college course for 3 months a year as well as a work placement in a top hotel.


She had just split up with her ex when she met me and we hit it off straight away and started seeing each other, everything was great, she stayed at mine(still at home at the moment, but thats another story) whenever possible to get away from being at work all the time and everything was wonderful, but then the new year came this year and she had to go away to college for 3 months, it wasnt too bad, we saw each other every weekend, and we new it was only for 3 months. Just as the end of her college time was up the news came that she was to be moved to a new hotel which was 30 miles away from me, again it wasnt too bad, but we would only beable to see each other at the weekends, like we had been doing, she was upset and so was I but we were determined to get through it, but as time went on things became more strained with us. I used to get jealous of her going out alot with people, mainly guys, from work, as cheffing is a very male dominated area. I trusted her but just wished it was me going out with her more. She said i had nothing to worry about, i trusted her and i was right to do so, she hasnt cheated (as far as i know!).


Things started to get really strained and we talked about having a break to ease things so we did, as we were arguing alot, constantly sniping at one another, and we just werent talking or seeing each other as much.... the break was only for a week and it was very difficult, it was my choice to do so as i thought it may help, no contact whatsoever.


Things werent so bad, and then we went on holiday (vacation) to the Caribbean for 2 weeks, we couldnt wait, but the night before we went we had a huge row over something so silly, and it kinda ruined the mood. While away things started ok, we got back on track but again we had another huge row, she ended up calling home in tears and if there was a flight that day she would have left, I felt the same way to be honest although I loved her to bits. We lasted out the holiday although we said we would have a break when we got back.


The morning we arrived back she took all her stuff from mine and went and stayed with relatives for a couple of nights, but that evening she started texting me and she said how sorry she wasit had come to this, and it wasnt what she wanted, how tough she was finding it (the thought if being apart) she said it was torture. So anyways we ended up seeing each other about a week later, I went to her's, and we didnt really talk about it as we said we would, we just carried things on as deep down i dont think either of us wanted to split.


Since then we have had a couple of small rows but nothing major, and I thought things were going great, we have been going out lots, to the zoo and parks and fairs etc, having alot of fun and alot of laughs. I dropped her back at her's the weekend before last and we said we would see each other the next weekend (the one just gone) and said our goodbyes.


Then i spoke to her on the wednesday and she was in the pub, which was cool, wth 2 guys, again i was cool with it, it was late so i went to bed at mine and told her id speak to her tomoz. Well i didnt hear from her all day, i didnt get in touch with her either, and then on the friday the bombshell came....."Ive been thinking loads, im not happy at the moment" I was shocked, she say's she wants a change, a break, to be single for a bit, to live a little....But i dont understand it, i let her live, i dont stop her from doing anything.....I met her on the saturday to talk and i broke down in tears, i couldnt control it, i was distraught, i really love the girl, again she said the same thing (she wants a break) she was talking months, not just weeks.


Anyways that night she was going to Paris for the weekend with a girl friend, it was something we had discussed doing and so i said I wish we could go one day, and she replied "maybe we can one day" ......it just confused me as to what she wants.


She came back this morning, and after reading this thread I sent her a message about having no contact (as she still wanted to go to a concert with me for example) and i dont think she was to impressed... she replied "fair enough, if thats what you want to do" but it isnt, i said its up to us both and i need to know what it is she really wants.... a split or just a break.... she says she doesnt know and that she too is confused, she also said maybe im right about no contact and it may give me a chance to think and realise that there is better out there! what?! i dont want better, i want her, she isnt going to push me away. She has always said she doesnt know why im with her as i could do better, and she has always been down on herself, she was on anti depressants when i met her but has come off them over the last half year. She often puts herself down.


I have hardly eaten since last friday, ive lost nearly a stone in weight, havent slept much and im in a total state.....I dearly love and care for this girl and want to be with her, all my goals were looking towards us, not her, not me but us and i so want to be with her but im so confused.



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I myself dont really believe in breaks i think either your together or not together end of story. If you have moved heaven and earth for this girl then she doesnt deserve you if she wanted to "take a break" i think you should tell her if she wants space then let her have real space because she cant go and explore things keep you on the side so if in case things dont work in the outside world of needing space then she can come back to you? i dont think so. I think you should try to move on and if she realizes what she has lost trust me space is the last thing she will want from you.



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I'm very sorry that you are going through this difficult time. Like you, when the break finally happened I couldn't eat, sleep, think, etc....my head was spinning every which way and I felt completely untethered. What you are going through is completely natural and reasonable and you have to be patient with yourself otherwise you will drive yourself insane and only do more damage to both your relationship with her as well as your own psyche.


You need to give this thing time. Time is both your best friend and worst enemy right now, but trying to force the issue now will only widen the rift between the two of you. She is young, curious, confused and does not want to be in a relationship right now (based on what you wrote it does not sound like she is breaking things off for less innocent reasons)...it sucks, but as you have seen on this board by now, its less than an uncommon occurrence with young women.


It hurts, I know, but you have to back away and do so in a manner that allows you to retain your dignity and self-respect. Trust me, you don't want her to remember you doing anything other than that because if there does come a time when she wants to step back into a committed relationship she will be less inclined to do so if your exit was less than graceful or dignified.


Contact or no contact is a personal choice you are going to have to make for yourself but you have to key in on what is best for you as an individual not you as a couple. Don't press her, back away and keep yourself busy with things that you want to do for the betterment of you, not for the sake of trying to lure her back into your arms. If you want to try to seduce her rather than give her space then you will want to take a different approach (check out some of the advice Beec gives on this board....its pretty interesting), but again thats a personal choice and in my opinion, less than an optimal approach when it concerns a young woman who has a need to fly solo for awhile.


Time. Time. Time. Time is really the key here. And patience. Those two ingredients will allow everything else to fall into place, whether that means reconciling with her or taking a path through life that doesn't include her as your amore.


My advice to you: view this as a break up, not a break and use this as an opportunity to seize everything that single life has to offer. The first few bites at this new apple are going to be hard to choke down, but you'll find that the more bites you take the better it tastes. Pretty soon you'll realize just how good of a situation you really are in: (1) she comes back, great! Maybe you'll be that much stronger for it! (2) she doesn't come back, great! You have an exciting road ahead of you, one which will allow you to take advantage of certain things that are much harder to do when another person has to be factored into the equation.


Trust me, I know that things look bleak right now. I've been there, and on certain days I'm still there, but they will improve. Just give it time and most important of all, don't squander that time...go out and take advantage of it. Keep busy with pursuing certain goals or hobbies that you may have reluctantly passed on in the past. No more crying, no more begging, no more trying to figure out whats going on in her head. Its time for you to stand up strong and concentrate on yourself.


In my case, its been 9+ months. Seems like a long time, huh? It is and it isn't. Its long in the sense that it has given me a good amount of runway to collect myself, fix certain deficiencies in my life (still working on others), and really enjoy everything that single life has to offer. But its not long in terms of affording her the time to mature on her own as a single person...she still has a way to go and frankly if timing doesn't kill the chances for a reconciliation (odds are you are gonna meet someone else before she circles back to you), you still have to consider that she may mature into someone that is less attractive to you than the person you originally fell in love with.


My ex and I have had a couple of great conversations lately, yesterday's being the most recent. We talked for an hour and a half, laughed, flirted, etc. Do I think I'm any closer to a reconciliation than I was 8 months ago? Hell no. But I'm certainly more at peace with that now than I was then. Why? Because I gave it time...


Hang in there. The next couple of months are gonna be rough, but you have to stand strong and show what you are made of.



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I appreciate the words of advice, I really do, but im sure you undertsnad its hard to take at the moment.


Today after I had sent her a text, I was on lunch and i didnt get a reply from her so i tried to call her a couple of times as i needed some answers from her but she didnt pick, she would have started work as i finished my lunch so that isnt a problem, its now 11.25pm here and she should have finished a while ago, so again I tried to call her to get these answers and know for sure whats going on and where we are at, but again no answer, so now im worried she will think im pestering her and not giving her space in the ffirst instance, when all i really want is clarification as to what the hell is going on, its not so much to ask is it?? its not so much to be told so you know wether your coming or going is it?

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I blasted out a lot of philosophical advice in my last post, but having been where you are now at, I know that philosophical advice can only take you so far. So let me take a crack at giving you some practical advice to try to help you through the worst of it. Bear in mind, I'm drawing on only my personal knowledge of what has helped me cope and I'll point out to you that the overriding them of the entire list is STAY BUSY--don't sit and stew in your emotions!


#1: Exercise, and when you are done exercising, exercise some more. Pick a couple of events that sound interesting and challenging and start training for them. If you can afford it, have a personal trainer put a program together for you that has you peaking on race/event day. Exercise has been my salvation and I cannot get enough of it! I ran in a 20 mile trail race in the hills this weekend after a night on the town...and placed 6th. Yesterday I benchpressed the most I have in years 305 pounds. No way could I have done either of those things a year ago, let alone one of them.


#2: Put together a list of goals and things you need to get done. The list should have both short and long term goals and should include things that you both like to do and things that even if not enjoyable, need to get done. And then start knocking them down one by one. Each time you knock one down, add another to the list.


#3: Socialize: that means with both friends and family. Don't worry about dating just yet, there will be time and opportunity for that later. Just don't isolate yourself from the world, get out there and mingle. And though friends and family will be there for you when you need to talk about the ex don't exhaust their good will by talking about the ex and the break incessantly...everyone has their limits on being a good listener and shoulder to cry on.


#4: Take a trip: Get the hell out of town and go visit a place where you can decompress. Do it even if you have to spend more money than you think you can afford. Sometimes a little downtime in a warm and friendly locale can really help you put things in to perspective.


#5: Spoil yourself: get those new 'toys' that you want, and/or those new clothes you've been promising yourself. There is nothing wrong with a little materialistic indulgence at a time like this (don't go to the extremes that I've gone though...I don't even want to think about the cash I've blown through in the last 9 months!)



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I know its hard to take. I really do. I was in limbo for 5 months.


Its NOT too much to ask, but if she's not ready to cough up an explanation of her own accord you pressing her for it is only going to increase her anxiety...and nothing good can come from escalating what is already a tense situation. Defuse it with silence. Let the emotions cool off a bit (especially for you).


More than anyone I know, I am driven to understand things that upset me and then move heaven and earth to fix the problem. That is what made my break-up so difficult to cope with: she made a decision and no amount of understanding, persuasion or committment to change on my part would have made a difference at that time.


I think you may want to back off a bit.



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I want to do all thses things, but at the moment im so down and out that its not possible, ims till basically grieving and im no way in the right sort of state to exercise, I have hardly eaten, Id collapse after a couple of mins!


At this moment I just cant let go, cant imagine not talking to her, having no conatct, we have spoken nearly everday, morning noon and night for the last 15 months....I cant just foget that, I have a huge hole in my life now, and the silence is deafening......I will hopefully beable to do the things you say soon, but right now its not possible, its only been 4 days but already feels like a lifetime, the fact she says she doesnt know what she want confuses things even more.

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I think you may want to back off a bit.



Im sure you are correct, but im just one of these people who has to sort things out, if we ever argue I just cant let it carry on, or wait until the next day, I have to sort it.....


Im scared if I just leave it now, neither of us will know whats going on, she is very strong minded and stubborn as she has to be for work and I know she if i say no contact, would def not contact me....it would be me that would struggle, and struggle an awful lot.


She is not one to show emotion or open up easily and never has been, it takes time and effort to get her to speak, and when we have spoken at length before she has opened up and we have spoken a great deal about her past problems etc, but as she is this way inclined she is very unlikely to just come to me and say i miss you or tell me how she feels, again this worries me alot.

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Well i tried to call her again beofre i went to bed but no answer so i just sent a lil text which read as follows...


'Ok well im not too sure why you wont talk to me but i thought it would be nice to both know where we stand, would be cool to hear bout Paris too. Guessing your not to comfortable talking about it in depth at the mo which i understand somewhat. we should talk sometimes and see how we are getting on, other than that ill give you the space and time you want, take care shortyx'



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4 days since the last tough conversation...for some reason I thought you were further down the road than that. That being the case and given how you are feeling I think you need to find a way to sit down with her and talk through exactly what she wants right now and how that fits with what you want/need.


When my ex hit me between the eyes with her request for a 'break' I was blown out for days and my efforts to find out exactly where her head was at were met with a lot of "I don't know"s and "I'm so confused". My reaction was to suggest a cooling off period of a week, which we did. When we next spoke I had a mental list of those things that I needed to hear to have a semblance of clarity of where she was at.


I asked some pretty blunt questions and the answers I received made it clear that I had to step back in a big way and protect myself (though there was still a lot of ambiguity and confusion, enough to make it clear that she wanted to keep me tied to her in case she one day woke up and decided she wanted 'us' back). Perhaps you need to try to do something similar to get the clarity on where you stand.



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Well i tried to call her again beofre i went to bed but no answer so i just sent a lil text which read as follows...


'Ok well im not too sure why you wont talk to me but i thought it would be nice to both know where we stand, would be cool to hear bout Paris too. Guessing your not to comfortable talking about it in depth at the mo which i understand somewhat. we should talk sometimes and see how we are getting on, other than that ill give you the space and time you want, take care shortyx'




In relation to your last post, please read my quoted post, Im trying to speak to her so i can find out what the score is.....I would love to know what she wants right now!

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I like the message you sent to her. Its non-threatening and makes it clear that you want to find out where you stand. Give her ample time to respond, don't keep after her.


Now go get some sleep.


Well as soon as I turned the PC off last night and got into bed she sent me a text back! Her phone was on silent it seems. So i called her up and we had a chat for a good 40 mins before she started to fall asleep (she had been up since 5am) I said there were things i wished id done differentley in our relationship, such as going to see her more and not making her come and see me, also not talking to her enough, plus said that there were lots of things I needed and wanted to change in my life, Im still living at home, mainly due to 2 redundancies and a broken leg which meant 9 months off work in the last 4 years, I just havent been in the right situation to move out so have no independance and no space, I said this was something i wanted to change and put right and get on at work and make something of myself, also prove to her that i would change and be like the guy she first met and fell for, anyways she started to get real tired and she had to be up fairly early so she said call me tomorrow which i am going tp do later.


Now i have to decide what to say to her later, I want to change and prove to her that i will but want her to see it so need her around to do that, im going to ask her if we do have any sort of a future together and wether she is just letting me down gently or wether its all a smokescreen foranother person that she likes.


She is very ambitious and very get up and go and I havent been the past year, i want to prove to her and tell her that i want to be and i will be.


Another thing she said was how she had 2 ticketd to go and see the football team that I follow on December 11th, I got her into the sport and we used to go together with my family, I said id love to go and she repleid we will have to see what happens.........still confused.

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Disaster tonight.


tried to ring her and no answer, tried a couple more times and no answer....then her phone is turned off for half an hour, try again it rings and and no answer, try a few more times but no luck, so i text her and ask her to please speak to me as i need to say a few things as i posted above and need to talk to her. She replied, ok have it your way she said.


So i called her, she want in a very good mood, seemed the reason she was late in from work and hadnt answered at first was she cut her finger and had to get it looked at, then her battery died so phone was off.....but she wouldnt even tell me that without some questions being asked.


Anyways i said all i wanted to, and way too much, just kept repeating stuff over and over, I aksed her if there was anyone else and she did say there was some guy who was nice who she had been chatting to lately but didnt know very well, the only reason she talked to him was he follows the same football team as me! but they have alot in common apparantley and when i asked her if she liked him, i got "he is a nice guy".


She said she wanted her break and she would contact me in a few weeks as im meant to be going to a concert with her, so she will get in touch with that, also possibly going to the football on th 11th, but she said she may not beable to go due to work. She said if she got in touch it wouldnt mean anything and we would just be friends if we went to the concert, and by her having a break and me changing things in my life it didnt mean that we would get back together, she wanted time to think and look at things, she also said when i asked her, that she didnt love me right now.


All in all very bad, she said towards the end of our convo that i was starting to piss her off and annoy her and she was tired and ratty, i was just saying the same things about how i would change for her etc, I was weak, i know, I couldnt help it.


So now we have a small period, 2 or 3 weeks of no contact and ill have to wait and see if she gets in touch, its 2.35 am here, i have to be up in 4 hours, i feel so sick and ill, i really dont feel well and my head is banging, I made such a mistake tonight and i just want to rectify it somehow. Im so depressed

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Reading your last post was like watching a train wreck in slow motion. Dude, I'm sorry that things went so badly. I truly feel for you. But you pushed hard and she pushed back and ran...if she had had a different reaction I would have been stunned.


One question: how long have you and this girl been dating?


Regardless, having someone you are in love with tell you the things that you are hearing is frickin' horrible, no matter the length of the relationship.


Now that you have stuck your hand in the fire to find out whether its hot or not, have you learned that it truly is or are you willing to do it again to see if it won't burn you the same the second time around? Its time to BACK OFF. Completely. Immediately.


Calling her incessantly, backing her into a corner demanding (or worse, begging for) answers will not make the situation better, only worse...STOP IT. It hurts, you want to stop the hurt immediately, but realize that the only way to stop the hurt immediately is to hear her say (and know that she means it) that all is well and that you are her world. Well, that just ain't going to happen as much as I would like to hear that it did (and should it happen no one will cheer louder for you than me), and if she did do a complete 180 so quickly I would be VERY wary...more than wary actually.


Ok, assuming that you agree with me that the odds of the pain disappearing (or even lessening to a degree thats less than agonizing) over night are pretty damn low, what do you need to do?


First and most importantly...pull your hand out of the damn fire! You are keeping yourself wide open to the hurt and she is going to keep dishing it out to you if you keep pressing her. BACK OFF. Go quiet, drop off her radar completely. You need to get your feet back under you and there is no way that is going to happen if you keep pushing the issue.


I'm not going to dispense any other advice right now because right now the only thing that matters is for you to get clear of the fire before you get burned even more badly. BACK OFF. Don't call her, don't text her...don't try to communicate with her in any way.


It took everything I had to follow my own advice when my ex told me she needed to do her own thing. Damn it hurt. It still hurts just thinking about it. You need to get yourself under control, you need to realize that you have NO control over what she is feeling right now and that she is going to be resistant to any effort by you to dictate how and in what direction her motions flow. Its time to start doing what you need to do to protect yourself from any more hurt. Its time to BACK OFF.


I have to leave right now and will be out of the state for the next few days and will not be checking email or the internet. I would like nothing more than to return on Sunday and find that you have not called her or contacted her in any way. Talk to your friends and family, pour your guts out to them, but don't call her.


Its time to stand up and prove your strength, Steve. Don't let this situation get the better of you. Stand strong and don't sacrifice your self-esteem and self-respect for someone who is thinking only of herself right now.


Take care.



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I have to agree with Caveat ont his one, you are not going to get the answers you want right now from your girlfriend, pushing for answers will only push her away further so try not to call her, text her or email her. believe me i know it is torture because you think that you just need to say one more thing and that may turn it around. It wont, leave it be for the moment, let her have her breathing space, she has asked for that and respect her wishes.

I have been there but i did not call, in the first few days i said all there was to be said and then i left it be, there were many times i wanted to call and say something but all i wanted to say was something i had already said but slightly rephrased..you have said all you want to say and you didnt get the answers you want and remember that feeling when you got off the phone from her, you dont want to feel that again so dont call her because every time you do you will have that feeling when you get off the phone.

I know its hard but for your own sake dont push her away further by calling her, respect her wishes and give her the time that she has requested.

Come here to vent, just dont call her!

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I am not going to call her or contact her now, she wants space and time which is fine, but the other day when i suggested exactly that she didnt like it and said why cant we still be friends and talk? but now its totally different.


Im scared that she wont get in contact with me again, im scared that she wont miss me, im scared ill never know anything of her. She lives 30 miles away and im not just going to bump into her walking down the street.


Im so scared right now, my life feels like its falling apart, I have had to take today and tomorrow off work to try and sort my had out, I couldnt get to sleep last night and felt so sick, work were understanding and i have a doctors appointment tomorrow afternoon to get some help, but right now it feels like nothing will help.


Christmas is coming up, a time to spend with the one you love, then new years, again a happy time to spend with them, I dont want her to spend it with another.

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she will contact you eventually, they always do, but let her do the contacting and dont hurt yourself anymore by contacting her.

im sure when you said you wanted NC she was a bit taken aback but you pushed her too far and now she wants NC so give it to her.

Everyone misses their ex even the dumper, it is only human to miss someone you have had a relationship with, but give her time and space to miss you also..you contacting her every day will not make her miss you, it will drive her away. SO DO NC.

Believe me you are not the only one on this forum dreading Christmas and New Years, everyone is..but we will live through it and hopefully next year we will all be happy once more or a little bit of the way there!!

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She said to me last night, when i mentioned that she hasnt given me the impresino she misses me, that im not giving her the chance to miss me which gives me a bit of hope.


This is all so out of the blue, she even bought me a xmas present just before she said she wasnt happy and needed some time and space last week. I just dont understand.


My phone is here on the desk, she normally texts me all day every day, the silence is deafening, I just feel like she is giving her attention elsewhere, her love elsewhere, her texts elsewhere, sad i know, but she is forvever on her phone and texting me or others......


I just feel like i want to curl up and hibernate for the winter, or longer if it helps.


She is going to her parents this weekend, i know she will have internet access, i want to write her an email, nothing heavy, just saying i know we need time apart and its the best thing to do etc......but i know i shouldnt, im too weak though.

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Steve, she said herself you are not giving her the chance to miss you. Listen to her, please do not email her, you have said all you can say and now you have to let her be for the moment. You will not get the answers you want right now so give her space and time to think. there is no point emailing her and repeating yourself, you are just going to annoy her if you keep this up. Stop or you will lose her forever!!

Crawl up and hibernate for a while and see the doctor, talk to him/her, they will reassure you that what you are going through is normal.

When my ex left me i thought i was the only person on the planet that was feeling that much pain but guess what i wasnt, i do understand i have been there, im still there in ways but i stopped torturing myself and accepted it was over and that helped.

You are not there yet but stop torturing yourself and stop contacting her..

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Yes i know its not good, i am not going to email her. My mind is in a daze, just keep thinking of earlier this year when she would say'I have never loved anyone as much as you' or when she sat on my bed at a time when she was on anti depressants and she said 'If im not with you i may as well be dead' and now she isnt with me she is fine and its what she wants, its killing me inside.

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Been following along with this thread, and I'm coming to some realizations. As much as I doubt it, and as much as my friends say this is my fault and I should keep her in my life, I believe I did the right thing. I want her to be with me, or not in my life at all. I placed an ultimatum down. Some of my friends said it's like I'm saying marry me or good-bye. I don't look at it that way. I see there exageratted perspective, but here is someone I care for, love, and want to be with. But when things got rough, and she seemed confused about us, I initiated a break. I could not take the pain of being in limbo. I told her we should take a break to have some space, and we btoh needed space, but I did not want to end it. I still wanted to be with her.


When she ended it 2 days later, I said good bye. She could not understand this. Someone told me I pressured her or "trapped her." I see where they're coming from, but I have to look out for me. If she has doubts, that's fine. It's not what I want to hear, but I can accept that. And I walked away. I can't stick around. Sure I think if I stuck around we'd get back or something, but I'm not willing to take that kind of risk.


It's been 2 months. Not a peep from her. I have accepted that what we had is over. It may come back, it may not. I am doing much better. Still miss her, still think about her, but I can't sit here and wallow in myself. If it's meant to be, somehow it'll work itself out.

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Jeez this awful, just been reading through so many posts throughout the whole site.


I dont want to grieve, but i cant stop it, i keep think of the last few times we were together, we went to the Zoo in London, and she was so happy, she was dancing around without a care in the world of the underground (tube) platform...we had such a fun day.


I havent got dressed today, its now 1.05 am, im not tired right now, I just want her back, back here with me, I want to go to bed and wake up next to her again, give her a kiss good morning and see her smile......

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