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My 'one' just broke up with me and I'm lost


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Hey, I'm new to this site, but not new to the whole heartbreak thing unfortunately. My last breakup was 5 days ago, and I guess I joined here to try and ease the pain a little.


Up until Friday morning just past, I literally had the perfect relationship. I met my boyfriend a year and a half ago, 3 years after my marriage ended (which was my first and most traumatic breakup) and he was everything. I wasn't even looking for a new relationship when I met him on a night out. The one thing that put me off at first was the age gap, he was 21 and I was 28. I've never ever dated younger, but after chatting and laughing with him for a whole evening, it just felt so right. He was such an old soul for his 21 years, and extremely mature. He was more respectful of me than any man I'd met recently that was my age or older. He didn't just want sex, he wanted to get to know me as a person and I found that very appealing! It took a good few dates before he even tried anything, and I really did feel valued as a human. Any way. The whole time we've been together, he's been nothing but sweet, attentive and caring. I have two children who he was amazing with, and slowly built a very strong relationship and bond with them over time. Right up until the point of the break up he was arranging family trips and spending plenty of time with the three of us off his own back. I never pushed him to be a father figure or anything, I knew that wasn't his job or responsibility! But it was nice that he wanted to do it all the same.


We never had fights, we never screamed at eachother. We worked through stupid (and very rare) arguments and always came out that little bit stronger on the other side. He constantly told me how much he loved me, was extremely tactile, bringing me in for hugs and being grabby as I walked by. He sang sweet song to me whilst cuddling close of a night time before falling asleep. Not a single bit of that changed, right up until Friday morning.


He just sprung it on me all of a sudden that he thought we were heading in different directions in life, and wanted different things from eachother. He sobbed like a baby the whole way through. I was shocked...literally couldn't process the words he was saying. How was it possibly that he was talking about our perfect relationship? He kept saying he didn't know what he wanted, and needed to go back to his mum's house. So he left, and I didn't speak a word to him until Saturday morning. None of it felt real, I was sure he was going to come back and tell me he was just having a moment. I text him first Saturday morning to ask what he was doing, and if it was over. He again told me that he was unsure of our relationship, and thought it was for the best to end it. He kept calling me 'baby' the whole way through whilst texting. Force of habit I guess. He finished up by saying that he'd leave me alone so he could try to sort out 'the mess' he'd made of everything. I wasn't sure how to take that as it seemed like he was implying that he might of made the wrong choice, even though he was so certain of it being over. It doesn't feel like he thought his decision through at all to me. Any way I left him alone once he said that, and just spent the whole of Saturday crying inconsolably. Come Sunday we text a few time to sort him picking up his stuff from my house. He came over to do it that very day, no hesitation. I asked if I could have 5 minutes of his time so he could explain to me what's happened in his head, and he agreed. So I show up, he opens the door and starts sobbing again. He asked me for a hug straight away, which I turned down because it was too hard. We go to the kitchen and I ask him how long he has felt this way for. He said 'about a month or so'. So I ask if it's something I'd done, he says no and seems sincere. Same thing when I ask if it's something he's done, or if he met someone else. He's not a very good liar, and I really don't think he would of had the time to meet up with someone behind my back (potential for online cheating though I guess as we don't check each others phones/facebooks etc). He met a new friend about 2 months ago who's been spending more and more time with. This man is in his 40s with a string of women on the go, goes out drinking every night even though he doesn't have a job (except selling a bit of weed) and he's been asking my ex to go out with him more and more lately. My ex seems to really like and look up to this man, and I have no idea why. I can imagine he's the type of man who likes his buddies to be single so they can go drinking and picking up girls with him. The one and only time I met him, he kept calling me by the wrong name no matter how much I told him my actual name. So anyway, I asked if things had changed for him since meeting this new friend, and he looked very sheepish, and although he denied it, I knew instantly it was something to do with him. I then get that one line everyone dreads: 'I love you but I'm not in love with you'. The whole time we're talking his crying inconsolably, and keeps saying 'I've f'ed everything up'. I hadn't shed a tear at this point, but he was a real mess. I thanked him for telling me what I needed to hear, and told him I was going to say my goodbyes, as after everything was sorted with getting his stuff I'd be cutting contact. He asked me for several more hugs during the conversation, which I eventually obliged to because I just wanted to feel him hold me too, and he clung to me for so long each time, refusing to let go when I eventually tried to pull away. I ended up being the one consoling him and telling him he'd be fine as it's what he wants! I left him sobbing on my kitchen floor in a heap.


Monday, he text me to tell me everything was gone apart from a few larger items. He also told me that our pet rats were fine after the move, after we both agreed for him to take them. I was polite but short in my replies, and he finished the conversation by saying 'have a great day my friend!' Which hurt. I'm not ready to be his friend yet when only a few days ago he's singing 'you are my sunshine' to me as I fall asleep. We haven't had much contact since then, just a couple of texts initiated by me to tie up some loose ends. Now it's all done, and today will be the first day of no contact for me. I saw on his Facebook before I removed him that he'll be looking at 3 different places to live today, not even a week after the breakup and he's looking at new homes. It hurt to see him moving on so swiftly when I can't even eat.


So the thing is, I know this is over. Even if he does end up having any doubts, he's moved out and I've told my kids. I don't think he'd ever feel like he could come back after all is said and done. I have absolutely no intention of contacting him and have asked him to do the same (I doubt he would any way, he seems pretty set in his decision). I just need some ideas on what makes people switch so suddenly! How was he able to act so in love and happy for a whole month? How can people fake that so well? I absolutely didn't see this breakup coming, and I'm still in shock. How did anyone else in this situation deal with this and move past losing the love of their life so fast and brutally? I'm so lost at the moment with two heart broken children. I need some reassurance that I'll be ok and I'll some how over come this. I'm going away on Friday to a festival that I planned with him. He sold his ticket and will be staying here. I feel so sick at the thought of him not being there, we had an amazing time last year! But I know I need to go, other wise I'll be home all week on my own (kids are with their dad) just wallowing in sadness.


Can anyone shed some light on this behaviour? And support for starting NC today would also be very much appreciated. This man touched my soul in a way I never thought possible, and I'm so scared of never feeling this way about anyone ever again. Thank you for reading this guys, it means a lot x

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i dunno .. how ppl can forget everything so quickly .. i was cheated by x-gf ... she just came up and said she had no feelings for me at all .. all of sudden ...i think some ppl just get bored of it . i am not sure either .. i wanted NC but she kept on calling me and trying to stay in touch with me ... i requested for NC .. but she says she cares for me and want to stay friends .. i have tried NC twice and failed because i still have feelings for her ... i am trying to do NC again ... please be strong and stick with NC ... he might come back but it would be a risk ... he mite leave again ...

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Yes I think you're right, he just had me so fooled with his maturity. He looked and acted a lot older than 21 (he was 23 when we split) and I regularly forgot how old he actually was. I never go for younger guys ever, he was just a very unique human and his age just didn't seem relivent. Lesson learnt I guess, although it doesn't make things any easier right now

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Thanks link14, I'm so sorry you're going through this too it's honestly so confusing how they can just switch so quickly. I still can't get my head around it!


I love him very much but I know I don't want the relationship. He's said some things that can never be taking back and have definitely broke my trust for good. NC wont be broken! Never ever ever. I went through a horrible marriage break up and wasn't able to go full NC due to having children together. It was painful and dragged out for years. My last ex really helped me with the final hurdle of getting over all of that. I will never make the same mistakes during this break up that I did in my first! It just sucks so much not hearing his voice x

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I think it was a combination of his immaturity and him not being ready for the whole husband and father role. He probably cared for you a great deal but he still is wanting to be able to explore and be free and wasn't ready to be tied down to that degree.

His friend might have pointed that out to him but ultimately, he made the decision to walk away.

To be fair, he is quite young to be ready for such a serious commitment.


Hopefully next time around you will be able to find someone around your age who is in the same place in life that you are and wants to be a dad and in a marriage type relationship.

Don't find anyone too much older than you or too much younger than you, as they will be in different places in life than you are and there is a good chance it won't work out.

I am sorry for your heartache.

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I agree that he likely just isn't really ready for the life stage you're at, OP.


23 is very young to be in a serious relationship with a single mom. That's not a shot at you. It's just that an older and more experienced man would probably be a far better option for you. Your ex is too young to really have had his young and carefree stage and I think his friendship with this older single guy emphasized that. I don't believe this friend is to blame, mind you, but I think your ex realized that virtually filling the role of partner and step-dad is too much for him right now.


While your age gap is not so significant in number of years, your life experiences have been very different and you're really at two different places. I'm sorry this happened so suddenly, OP. I know it hurts like a betch.

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Thanks for all of your replies guys, I really do appreciate the feed back!


I just feel silly for letting him in. I never expected him to play the dad role, he's not my kids father. He was more like a friend to them, and everything he did or didn't do with them was his own choice. He knew what he was getting into when he met me, I made it very clear and he told me all was good and he could handle it. Obviously he was wrong. I didn't mean to fall for someone 6/7 years younger, believe me I really didn't want to. It just happened that way and nobody has ever loved me the way that he did. He was very vocal about it daily. But people change I guess. Thanks for the advice any way guys xx

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For a very long time I dated a guy who I constantly changed my mind about in my head. When I were with him though, all of those thoughts would disappear and I would be and act utterly in the love. But the moment we were apart, I would think about our incompatibilities. It took me nearly five years of contemplating our relationship to finally breakup with him, even though I knew I'd be breaking my own heart in the process. Maybe for your bf, he is happy and in love when he's with you, but when he starts to think about the longrun, maybe he feels you two aren't compatible. For example, maybe even though he loves your kids, maybe his ideal marriage would be with someone who doesn't have kids. Little things like that could have affected him and made him decide to break his own heart for the betterment of both of your futures... if that makes sense.

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