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My bf of 2 years wants to take a break bc I’m having mental health issues

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Hi guys,


My bf of almost two years texted me Sunday morning after ignoring me all night to tell me he thought we should take a break but he didn’t say why. Then when I texted back and tried to get answers and call, I got nothing.


So I didn’t go to work yesterday as I tried to piece stuff together... and today I finally went back and it was really hard. I had way too much free time to think, and broke down several times. It got to the point where I called him again on my break and only then did he start answering my texts.


He implied he didn’t love me anymore bc of the issues I’ve been having and accused me of keeping him out even though I did that for self preservation so that if he didn’t care, it wouldn’t hurt. He told me he thought I should get help and he’s not wrong — I self harmed for the first time in a while on Saturday night when he ignored me.


He ended up agreeing he would talk to me when he gets back from his work trip In a week. I’m still really hurt and confused. We were going to move in together and it seems very strange to try to just back away from a person instead of saying “in order to keep this relationship going, I think you should get help.” He just went straight to trying to get rid of me, and he mentioned twice he didn’t want worrying about me to affect his job opportunities, so now I just feel extra stupid...


So I don’t even know if we’re still together and I don’t know how I’m supposed to get by for a whole week without talking to him. I feel sick all the time and I just really need some guidance (yes, I did find a therapist to talk to)

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Not everyone is capable of handling a relationship with someone that self-harms, or has a mental illness, or a physical one. You need someone in your life that is willing to stand by you no matter what.


That ALL being said... I have past baggage around addiction, and as patient and empathetic as I am to people's situations, I wouldn't stay in a situation with someone that wasn't doing the work to try and better themselves.


I don't know your situation but I do know it takes work on both sides... it's good you are seeing a therapist and working on yourself, that's always a good place to start!

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Well, guys aren't totally in touch with their emotions, so many times it's difficult for them to say what they're really feeling. When they're backed into a corner, they may make up excuses and try to blame things on their girlfriends. But I would say your boyfriend is not ready for a move-in relationship and whatever issues you've been going through have been noticed. For example, cutting yourself is not normal and is very scary to others.


So rather than enabling you, your boyfriend is telling you to get yourself fixed. Now that's easier said than done, but it sounds like he wants you to get help but at the same time, he wants out of the relationship. Meanwhile you're showing signs of emotional dependence rather than love, and that's another thing you need to get help with.

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We know what the current situation is, but can you tell us more about your history together?


What sort of mental health issues do you struggle with, and how have they affected the relationship? And same question as j.man, why would your mental health affect his job opportunities?

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I have dealt with a partner who has mental health issues. Ultimately, it was just too much to deal with. Seriously. It isn't just dealing with the "knowing" that there is a problem. it was dealing with the destructive behavior, some of which impacted my own health negatively.


Sometimes there comes a point that even if one cares for someone, the disturbance is just too much.


The person who has a mental health issue has got to reflect on that and attempt to change destructive behavior--for their own growth as a person. it is secondary as an attempt to keep someone around.


As one one poster wondered about it, of course a loved one's mental health issues can impact a job. Think of it. Depending on what it is, one might have to go to an ER, a police station, answer a thousand phone calls during a work day, deal with a crashed car, and so on. Again and again.

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Sounds very simply that your partner is fed up with your issues and is basically giving you a serious wake up call that you need to start taking care of yourself and get a handle on your mental health issues. In short fix yourself for real instead of using your partner and your relationship as a crutch to get by without addressing your problems in any meaningful way.


It's one thing to be supportive toward a partner who is doing everything they can to maintain their mental health - meaning they go to therapy regularly, they take their meds if appropriate, they exercise and maintain a proper diet to help themselves stay as health and balanced as possible. Sure there may still be some episodes here and there, but overall, they are taking full responsibility and all actions possible to be healthy and a good partner. It's quite another thing to be in a relationship with someone who will simply dump their problems on their partner, used them as free therapy, demand understanding and to be humored about their issues while taking zero action and personal responsibility to be healthy. The latter will burn people out and destroy relationships. Invariably, the partner will reach a point where they are themselves exhausted, fed up and too burned out to continue.


Sounds to me OP like you fall into that second category and sounds like your partner is pushing you to improve. It might be a case of too little too late or you might be able to patch up IF you seriously work on yourself and follow through with psychiatric care, lifestyle changes, etc. Cutting yourself in response to something you don't like is a really good way to run people off from you. Get help OP. Today.

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To speak generally, and to somewhat piggyback off the above posters, I'm not a fan of the "if he loves you, he sticks by you no matter what" argument.


Real talk, I was deployed from '04 into '05, and I've got plenty of baggage from that tour, and it's baggage that will probably never go away. I've been with my lady for coming on 5 years now. The one thing I've never done is put her in a position to be the one to address it. In full disclosure, I have had a severe episode since we've been together, and I don't provide any excuse for it, but sooner than it could be an argument, discussion, or even suggestion on her part, I was on the phone with the VA for counseling services. I've done well with therapy and managing PTSD for awhile, but even if I can't guarantee I'll never have another episode, it's still my responsibility to my own mental health, never mind the impacts it has on my partner, for me to do whatever I can to minimize if not eliminate them.


And, thing is, my partner would be within her rights to decide I'm just not for her. And that's just as well after 5 years as it would be only 2. I've got no doubt the reason she hasn't lost confidence is because I don't make my mental health her responsibility or give her the impression that my progress or motivation is at all dependent on the relationship or keeping her around. In fact, I'd argue that the moment you're stuck on this...


it seems very strange to try to just back away from a person instead of saying “in order to keep this relationship going, I think you should get help.” He just went straight to trying to get rid of me


...is when you've heard the death knell for the relationship. Having to give your partner an ultimatum to simply act in the best interests of their own mental health is the **** codependency is made of. And I can tell you, even as someone who's in no position to throw stones, that I'd sooner leave a relationship than use it as leverage to get someone to support herself. Even if I really wanted to be with her, I'd have to leave and I'd need her to pursue help on her own accord, and to establish her emotional independence for some time before I could ever confidently engage in a romantic relationship with her again.


OP, I'm glad you're pursuing therapy, and, again, this is all generally speaking, not having sufficient details of your specific case. Best of luck.

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