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So I was in a relationship for 3 years. I'm early 20s, she's late 20s. Lets call me E and her L.

 

I met L when I started a new job (at this time I was 19 and she was 26) and immediately (I mean IMMEDIATELY!) had a crush on her. I longed for her from afar but never even knew her name, and certainly didn't have the courage to ask! About 8 months into this job I managed to overhear someone calling for her and therefore knew her name. As soon as I got home that day I found her on facebook and sent her a friend request which she accepted. A few days/weeks later a situation happened in our workplace which allowed me to send a jokey message to L on facebook. She replied instantly with a jokey/flirty response. And so it began. From that day forward we spoke pretty much every day. Just light flirty messages - I was much more forward than she was from the get go but I could tell she liked that. We instantly discovered we had lots in common, and had an undeniable connection. A few weeks down the line we agreed to meet up for a picnic on the upcoming Saturday afternoon. I was due to go on holiday for 4 weeks on the tuesday and was determined to meet her properly before I left. As the Friday arrived I had some very bad family news and I sent her a text saying "I know we are metting tomorrow but any chance you would be able to meet me tonight as well? I need a friend". I had no expectations but she replied shortly after saying she could meet me at 9pm as she was working. I agreed, and as 9pm rolled around we met and went for a walk. I was terrified, I could barely say a word to her, but we ended up talking until 3am. I fell in love with her that night. It sounds crazy but I really did. The next day we went for our picnic and again stayed talking until 3am. The day after that she came to my house to watch a film around 9pm, and stayed until 7am. That night we had our first kiss and it felt like everything in my world had fallen into place. The next day I saw her for an hour or so but had to keep it brief as I needed to leave for holiday at 4am the following day, but we kissed goodbye. We spoke every day while I was on holiday, and the day I got back I went straight from the airport to her house and asked her to be my girlfriend which she said YES!

 

During the following 3 years I met all her family and she met mine. I went to her best friends wedding with her, and also her cousins wedding. We travelled across the world to 5 different countries. We went to festivals, parades, date nights, we did so much together. About a year into the relationship we went engagement ring shopping and she bought me a ring (we are both girls and it's always been said that she would propose to me if it ever came to that). She has had the ring I chose sat under her bed waiting for the right time ever since.

 

During our relationship we never bickered but had maybe 6 arguments that got massively blown out of proportion. There was never any cheating or abuse of any kind. We were both very much in love. We had maybe 3 occasions where we would have mini "break ups" where I got excessively emotional and pushed her away leading to her asking for a few days of space, and 1 big breakup (although we still acted as though we were together throughout the breakup and we reconciled 3 months or so later). I have depression which has been a difficult part of our relationship but she has always been there for me and helped me and I am receiving treatment and therapy for my issues.

 

So on Saturday 26th August it was our 3 year anniversary and we were at a festival in London. We argued in the evening about something really silly - I felt like she was taking the p*** out of me too much (this is her normal jokey behaviour). We had a grumpy evening and went to bed, but Sunday morning I gave her a big hug and said I love her and don't want to argue. She agreed and everything was fine. A few hours later she said she felt as though I had tried to ruin her time at the festival. I didn't take this well, we argued, and eventually screamed at each other to off and I asked her to give me my train ticket because I wanted to go home (we weren't due to go home til the Tuesday evening). She gave me my ticket and I headed back to the hotel. At this point some hurtful messages were exchanged - I told her the relationship was unhealthy for me and I didn't want her in my life, she told me that she agreed and she doesn't want my drama anymore. By this time it was too late to get a train home so when she eventually appeared back at the hotel hours later we had another blazing row. She at one point reached out to grab me to try and calm me down but she managed to catch my face with her hand. I was excessively emotional at this point and misread the situation so I screamed at her that she had hit me and I was going to call the police if she didn't get out. Eventually we both went to bed and fell asleep. Morning comes, she gets in the shower, I pack up and leave.

 

The next few days were torture - I forced myself not to contact her. Thursday evening I finally gave in and called her maybe 15 times before she eventually picked up. We spoke briefly and she said she was going away for a few days to be by herself. Monday I called her again and we spoke briefly. I tried to keep it casual, however she then burst into tears and said I was p*****g her off by acting like everything was fine. I then told her I was sorry and I was coming to her house to talk. She resisted but finally agreed. I spent the next 4 hours at her house. We spoke, she cuddled up to me, she said I needed to think about what I've said that's upset her and I need to learn not to react to things so badly (both points I have previously been aware are things I badly need to work on). Tuesday lunchtime I sent her a jokey text just saying "Same again tonight?" and to my surprise she replied "You can come at 7 if you want" so I did. I again was with her for 5 hours or so. Lots of cuddling, but no kissing or anything like that. One thing that resonated strongly is that she told me she always felt like I didn't need her, I only wanted her at my convenience and she was some sort of comfort blanket to me. Wednesday she had to work all day then Thursday we spent the evening how we had spent the Monday and Tuesday. On Thursday she let me know that I wouldn't be able to see her the next week (for genuine reasons relating to work). I was upset and she told me "Well you could have spent 2 weeks with me at the festival but you f****d that up didn't you".

 

On the Saturday I saw her briefly - just gave her a lift home from work. She seemed cold and distant but I tried not to let it get to me. On the Tuesday she sent me a message and a photo of her pet to say the pet had safely made it through an operation. I called her and after maybe 5 minutes of chit chat she said "Maybe we should just stop talking" I asked her why and said I certainly did not want that. She said "Because there is no future for us, we will never get back together" to which I responded "But you never know, there might be a future for us" and she immediately cut in "There's not." I asked her things such as "are you relieved that the relationship is over?" Her reply was "No I'm f*****g miserable, I'm an empty shell, I can't eat or sleep". I then asked her "What do you want from us?" and she replied "All I ever wanted was to have a relationship with you, spend my life with you and be happy. I love you more than anything but you've ruined it by always pushing me away!"

 

The conversation ended a few minutes later with the agreement that neither of us wanted to stop talking right now so let's just take each day as it comes. I left her to it, then Thursday evening I called her again. She picked up the phone with "What do you want? Why the f*** are you ringing me? *BURSTS INTO TEARS* Just leave me alone!" at which point she then hangs up the phone. On Friday night I send her a long message explaining exactly where I stand and how I feel about her, and that the ball is now in her court. Saturday morning she replied saying that she knew I had spoken about the situation to her family (her cousin who I was friends with). She sent a message saying "Who do you think you are? I'm so angry and embarassed. They have blocked you now. Just leave us all alone" I got very upset and appeared at her front door to talk about it, her mum answered and told me L was in her room and refused to come down and speak to me and her mum wouldn't let me in. Her mum basically said that I should move on with my life and it wasn't the end of the world.

 

Monday I sent L a message on facebook saying "I was wondering if you were maybe ready to talk?" to which I was promptly blocked! I got very upset, panicked, and rang her maybe 30 times as well as texting her saying how unfair she was being and "I Swear to god you better answer your phone!" I spoke to her mum again that night and she told me that all I can do is give it time because L is still very upset and angry but that she is CERTAIN L will contact me again at some point I just need to be patient.

 

So that's it. That was a week ago and it's been 0 contact since then. We spent 3 years together, we live 5 minutes away from each other, we used to see each other at least 4 times a week and spoke every single day! I am hoping against hope that I hear from her because I am desperate to have her back in my life. I have realised our issues and am already working on fixing myself both mentally and physically, but this 0 contact is absolute torture! She has booked a holiday with this cousin and he posted it all over facebook - it's booked for a week we had booked off to share together in November. She also had a trip to London last Tuesday and stayed the night in a hotel with a girl who caused numerous problems throughout our relationship (straight and engaged, so problems such as being a 2 faced self centred snake)!

 

Other facts:

- Not the first LDR for either of us

- Definitely 100% nobody else in the picture

- We had the same dreams for the future

 

Is there any hope? Any support would be greatly appreciated!

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Breaking up four times in three years isn't a stable relationship. Needing some time and space is WAY different then a "mini break up". Having big dramatic fights, screaming at each other and saying things to purposefully hurt each other are abusive actions.

 

It doesn't sound like you are ready to be in a relationship. Controlling your emotional reactions to things, listening and being able to keep perspective when in conflict are super necessary to make a long term relationship work. Most folks would struggle with a partner that pushes them away and breaks up with them. Not to mention someone who handles conflict by screaming. It sounds like you have work to do. And probably the best bet is to leave your ex alone.

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Agreed with rosephase, this relationship sounds like it was quite dysfunctional and needs to be over.

 

I would leave your ex alone now. She has been clear that she does not want to hear from you, and it appears you need to learn to self-soothe in constructive ways, rather than exploding or calling her repeatedly to the point that she will not speak to you. You've learned some very unhealthy behaviour patterns and now would be the time to be on your own and do some serious inner work to remedy this.

 

This relationship is likely at its final end. It really had deteriorated quite badly and was dragging you both down.

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Thanks for the replies. In answer to her needing space away - we both have different coping strategies neither of which are necessarily correct. She likes to shut herself away and "bury her head in the sand" so to speak. I am someone that likes to talk about things and resolve things immediately. When I said we broke up 4 times in 3 years.... it was very much a "May be things aren't working out between us" then a day or 2 later it would be "we've both been ridiculous, we love each other, we will work on things together" - that's what I meant by 4 mini break ups. It was only in the final argument that it became a screaming match because emotions were in overdrive because of how upset we both were. I think passion fuels fire and how much we love/care about each other fuelled the fire of screaming/shouting etc. Let's be honest here, we have all been in a situation of "I never fancied you anyway" or "well I never liked your cooking" so I think it's a bit sweeping to say that "saying things to hurt each other are abusive actions". Very few people have broken up and walked away saying "ok have a nice life I'll miss seeing you around" - I'm afraid it rarely works like that.

 

As stated in my post, I am fully aware of my unhealthy behaviours. I am undertaking CBT weekly, an emotional coping skills therapy course, and also adult counselling to deal with some of mybdeeper rooted issues. By no means am I saying "I want her back now" and metaphorically stamping my feet. I have acknowledged my downfalls and negative traits and I am working hard to address these. I am having help with my mental problems, I am visiting the gym to improve my self esteem as this is something I struggle with. I have been unemployed for a year now which obviously put a strain on the relationship so I have been applying to jobs every day. I have been reconnecting with friends and spending time with them. I have booked a mini break to Poland with a close friend to have some time and space away from my home town full of memories. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate the responses.... but I am saying that I hope that once I have worked hard on myself to address my issues then maybe there could be hope for us in the future. Never say Never, because who knows what might happen. I know I am only 22 and I have a lot of growing up/maturing to do. I have serious abandonment issues from my childhood which resulted in me being too needy from our relationship. I am very aware of the areas I need to work on. I have accepted responsibility for my role in the breakup. Now I just need encouragement to help get me through the no contact phase and hope for the future whatever it may bring.

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It's completely possible to break up with someone without actively trying to hurt them. Deciding you hurt so much it's okay to hurt your partner deliberately is abusive. I'm not saying it isn't common, or excused in our culture, I'm not saying people in happy relationships don't ever do it... I'm saying it's abusive and deeply counter productive, lacking perspective and self centered.

 

How are you supposed to trust someone who -you know- will hurt you, on purpose? If you are in a long term relationship you will be hurt by your partner. And your partner will be hurt by you. If you can't trust that it isn't on purpose? then it isn't much of a foundation to build your relationship off of.

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I do completely understand what you're saying. I have a very unstable relationship with most of my family members - I have done from the age of 6. When you are brought up in an environment of bickering and sniping and saying spiteful things to get a reaction it can be very hard to grow out of that. But as I said, I am aware that this is a major issue that is completely unacceptable and I am taking all the possible steps to rectify this - self reflection, therapy, medication, counselling. I suffer from depression, anxiety, Aspergers and Borderline Personality Disorder. I have never used any of these diasnoses as excuses however I also understand that they play a contributory role in my relationship breakdown. I understand wholeheartedly that if I am to have any chance at happiness/success in this relationship or any future relationship then I have A LOT of hard work to do on myself - but I have actively started that journey. I am determined to change my destructive behaviours and establish better coping mechanisms however sometimes it really does take a personal catastrophic event like this for people to truly realise where they need to change. Yes i realised some parts sooner but never really put much effort into adjusting my character. Now I am on the road to recovery so to speak. Everyone who's ever met me (including this ex) has always told me that I am the kindest most caring person they have ever met. I put everyone else's happiness first, I would do anything to help anyone, and I am a really true friend. However when faced with conflict I admit that I break down and react horrendously. I am self destructive. I am working on it.

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Don't worry! We are all working on it. It sounds like you are doing the right things. Taking on the hard work. Be kind to yourself, it's hard enough to shake when you didn't grow up in a bitter mean home. And you have a lot of time. Most folks don't have any idea how to be in a relationship at 21. You are figuring it out. Take care of yourself and don't forget that forgiving yourself is a big part of growth.

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I think what i have learnt from this forum is: when you have major issues yourself, establish what they are, accept responsibility for the issues (but do not blame yourself for them - just accept responsibility), take action to correct the issues, follow through with these actions to correct the issues, then forgive yourself for the issues you had and move on a better and happier person. Everyone has issues, nobody is perfect. My issues are self destructive and they were destroying a very kind and caring partner who put her all into the relationship. That is simply not ok by any stretch of the imagination. I have accepted that, taken responsibility for my actions, and am trying to better myself as a person. Don't worry, I will forgive myself eventually, but not until I am a better more mature person. As how can one forgive something that is still the case? Thankyou for taking the time to respond to my lengthy posts, i need all the help i can get x

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I think what i have learnt from this forum is: when you have major issues yourself, establish what they are, accept responsibility for the issues (but do not blame yourself for them - just accept responsibility), take action to correct the issues, follow through with these actions to correct the issues, then forgive yourself for the issues you had and move on a better and happier person. Everyone has issues, nobody is perfect. My issues are self destructive and they were destroying a very kind and caring partner who put her all into the relationship. That is simply not ok by any stretch of the imagination. I have accepted that, taken responsibility for my actions, and am trying to better myself as a person. Don't worry, I will forgive myself eventually, but not until I am a better more mature person. As how can one forgive something that is still the case? Thankyou for taking the time to respond to my lengthy posts, i need all the help i can get x

 

Forgiving yourself for the mistakes you made in the relationship is a very big and important step to take in the path to recovery. When you can truly forgive yourself about them and accept responsibility and act on these issues, you're showing your willingness to grow and improve yourself.

 

There's this myth I've heard since I was a child that people can't change. That's just not true. I'm glad you found it in yourself to realize your faults and what you need to do to improve them. No one is perfect, no one is supposed to be perfect. Take this as a learning experience and in the knowing you'll be a better person for it and a very good partner for your next relationship.

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For some reason I'm finding NC particularly hard today. I contacted L's mum via text message "Hi, do you think it would be appropriate for me to give L a call this evening? X" her response was "I think its best to wait till L contacts you, she doesn't really speak about it so i think it best not to contact her x"

 

This of course threw my head into a whole new whirlwind. She doesn't talk about it? What does that mean? Does that mean she doesn't miss me at all? Is she talking to someone else who's keeping her mind off me? Has she lost all feelings entirely so I don't even cross her mind anymore?

 

When you spend 3 years with someone you get to know the ins and outs of every thought that goes through their head. You can tell exactly what they are thinking from 1 facial micro-expression. However as soon as the turmoil of a breakup enters the picture, it feels like you suddenly know nothing. Everything you were certain of - L would take months if not years to get over me, she would miss me within a day or 2, she would never talk to someone else for at least 6 months - all that goes out the window and you start to doubt everything. It sucks. It's hard.

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First and foremost, you need to leave her mom out of this. It's really not appropriate to be texting her for advice.

 

Second, "she doesn't want to talk about it" means just that. She doesn't want to discuss it with you right now. Emotions and tensions are running too high and she knows how the conversation would go. She doesn't want to re-hash what's already been said. It doesn't mean she is talking to someone else, or doesn't care about you, or has forgotten you - you need to get your anxious thoughts under control and stop leaping to conclusions.

 

Third, yes, break-ups are very hard. I know you're hurting a lot right now. Most of us have been where you are, feeling like you suddenly don't know the person anymore. That feeling is normal. It takes a while to adjust to not having that person in your life any longer, and not knowing what they are thinking or doing. This is the hard part of life post-split. But you will slowly learn a new normal, too.

 

You mentioned you suffer from a range of mental health struggles. My ex-boyfriend is also BPD, so I know how much abandonment triggers you. But I also know that your ex cannot fix that, either. Are you in therapy specifically for your BPD? That will be essential right now, considering the primary and underlying fear of BPD-sufferer is abandonment. You will need all the healthy and constructive coping strategies you can get right now, to deal with this break-up in a way that does not tear you down emotionally.

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You mentioned you suffer from a range of mental health struggles. My ex-boyfriend is also BPD, so I know how much abandonment triggers you. But I also know that your ex cannot fix that, either. Are you in therapy specifically for your BPD? That will be essential right now, considering the primary and underlying fear of BPD-sufferer is abandonment. You will need all the healthy and constructive coping strategies you can get right now, to deal with this break-up in a way that does not tear you down emotionally.

 

Oh wow, it's so lovely to hear from someone who has been partner to a BPD sufferer. So many people I have spoken to previously are the ones suffering from BPD, so it's great to "meet" somebody from the other side! I have spent 18 months struggling to find specific BPD therapy - I am currently undertaking CBT although from my research I think DBT is the route more commonly offered to BPD sufferers however nowhere seems to offer that around where I live. I have major abandonment issues from childhood and the BPD certainly does not help either. My ex could take too long to reply to a text and I would instantly assume that she was trying to think of how to break up with me. It's such an unhealthy way of thinking but it's impossibly hard to change that mindset when to me it is "normal" to think in that way. I am trying to self-help by reading numerous blogs online from people who have overcome the struggles of BPD, however the professional help I am receiving is very much on the depression/anxiety side of things. Hopefully I will start getting somewhere though.

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As tough as NC is, it will be the best thing for you. What I learned this past week is if you love someone, you must let them go. I decided last Monday to let my ex go and start the healing process. 8 days of zero contact and I do not have the urge to reach out to him. Yes, I'm sad but I've decided to focus on myself and what I can control.

 

Trust me. Go NC and you'll start feeling better.

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Trust me. Go NC and you'll start feeling better.

 

I have been no contact with L for 8 days so far, and was very LC for the 9 days prior to that. It hurts every day. Some days I think "yea this isn't so bad, I can do this, I'm fine" then the next day every single little thing makes me think of her, there's a million things I would have messaged her, and I spend the whole day trying not to cry because it hurts so bad to not be able to talk to her.

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I have been no contact with L for 8 days so far, and was very LC for the 9 days prior to that. It hurts every day. Some days I think "yea this isn't so bad, I can do this, I'm fine" then the next day every single little thing makes me think of her, there's a million things I would have messaged her, and I spend the whole day trying not to cry because it hurts so bad to not be able to talk to her.

 

The thing is you reached out to her mom a couple of days ago. This is not no contact. No contact literally means pulling the plug on any contact with your ex and people closest to her i.e. her mom. I think you should try and take some time to yourself to heal and reset. I know it's hard as I'm going through it but there's no point pushing someone who doesn't want to be with you.

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So as a shock to everyone but most of all me, I received this text message today at 3.30pm..... "Hello E, just on my way to work but just a message to say hope you're okay x" it is now 5.30pm here and I have not yet responded. I am in total shock. I think I need help on how to respond. My thoughts currently along the lines of "Hey L, good to hear from you. I'm doing well thankyou, hope you are too. Have a good shift x" any input from anyone here would be greatly appreciated

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Because she obviously still cares about you, but didn't want to talk to you when you were in a hyper-emotional state and trying to force a discussion.

 

So today she just messaged back with "I'm good thanks x" so I rang when I knew she would be at work and wouldn't have her phone on her and left a voicemail along the lines of "Hey it's me. Glad to hear you're Ok. Would be good to catch up some time, give me a call if you fancy a chat. Ok bye for now"

 

I don't know if this is considered the right thing to do. Ok that's a lie. I know this is certainly considered the WRONG thing to do! But hey we each have to make the most of our own instincts/gut feelings. And my gut feeling? That if she hears my voice it's a little bit more personal than just a text. Hey, I'm one that's known to break all the rules. Maybe that's why I'm alone and miserable right now, but then again she always said she fell in love with me because I was always so forward and if I wanted something I told her rather than playing games/beating around the bush.

 

So where does one draw the line? Become a person who she always told me she would hate (acting aloof and casual) or carry on (gently) being my natural self, the person she fell in love with?

 

Right now I'm going with option B. I may be wrong. It may bite me in the proverbial. Who knows. But let's be honest, I have nothing left to lose. I'm leaving the country next week, and it's unlikely I will be able to have any contact with her while I'm gone.

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