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Wilda17
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I met a guy about 9 months ago online. He came off from the start as different in that he wasn't trying to be slick... just a regular guy. We texted, had a few calls, and then went out after a few weeks. It was a nice dinner date. We talked a lot and kissed a little afterwards. He's not a big talker but said he talked more with me than he normally did. He asked to go out again before the end of the night. He was not a heavy texter but remained consistent. After the first date he had an unexpected surgery. We didn't go out again for almost 6 weeks, but again, we kept regular contact.

 

I could tell he was into me. I liked him but it wasn't until the 2nd date did that switch flip to where I realized I was quite taken with him.

 

We started going out after the 2nd date on a more regular basis. We live about an hour drive apart, he has full custody of his two kids, and works quite a bit. It wasn't easy but I was okay with steady and slow and respecting boundaries with his kids and his time away from them. I told him I was open to meeting them but that was his decision.

 

A few months after we started going out on a more regular basis, he expressed wanting to see each other more, brought up going on a getaway together, and introducing his kids. He brought these things up the next day as well without provocation from me so I figured it wasn't him just being unaware of what he was saying in a moment. I thought meeting his kids would make things easier and hopefully would have been the step towards moving things along with some integration.

 

We didn't see each other for over 3 weeks after that. This concerned me but I was picking up on his mother (watches his kids) giving him a hard time, guilting, and possibly threatening to withdraw help for any attempts he made to pursue a personal life in that he was harming his kids. I think she has him over a barrel in that there is no ex involvement to share parental responsibilities and he isn't the type to expose them to just anyone in order to have someone play mommy for his convenience. I didn't question him on it other than a general surface question or two. I didn't want to embarrass him by highlighting things if his mom did have control over a part of his life. I understand the help she provides is critical and more than he could get from a regular babysitter but he also pays her for doing it. I'm also not trying to diminish her role or say he should have shirked responsibilities to see me. I was okay with getting together 2-4 times a month and giving it time to grow.

 

We got together twice in one week after that gap. He had gone out on a limb to make it happen with sitter arrangements (wrath of his mother) and his work schedule. The last thing he brought up before I left his house the last time I was there was bringing his kids to my place soon. I hadn't said a word about that. In fact, he brought that up several times of his own accord since first mentioning it. Each time he did bring it up I said it would be great and they were welcome.

 

I don't know precisely how much his mother was aware of other than he was attempting to pursue a personal life and she didn't like the idea of it. I had not met her but there was an opportunity for her to have seen us the last time him and I were together...confirming any suspicions she had for what he was doing.

 

He seemed distant via text that week and then he just stopped. I tried contacting him and he didn't reply. It's been several months now.

 

I realize people ghost and it never makes sense to you when you are the one ghosted. Maybe I just can't accept it but knowing he isn't the player type (i.e. respectful of my timing for becoming intimate and not pulling back after that became part of the relationship) and how cautious he is - his words and actions didn't match with him deciding to end things just because he wasn't into it. I don't think there was anyone else either. Some things I've checked up on since then also don't indicate anyone else.

 

I'm not pining away waiting. I've picked up on my life but there is still this empty spot. It's more as if it's a sense of him having needed to get his life together, deal with family relationships, and then he will be back. I swear, I realize how delusional it can sound to justify ghosting by basing it on a controlling mother or believing he didn't know how to say things so he said nothing. I know the bottom line is he left me hanging. I can't shake it though. It's like a calm "knowing" vs wishing he will be back regardless of the current situation.

 

I know people generally toss out the attitude that ghosters are losers and no reason justifies doing that, they were only using you, and you shouldn't entertain any reason they may have. Normally, I'd agree since disappearing is usually done after a date or two or sex and it can be reasonably deduced the ghoster wasn't all that interested to begin with. I don't see this as being quite the same or a reflection of me having some cliché low self esteem issue. This is actually about being confident he was genuine about his feelings for me despite the circumstances.

 

Anyway, I may be wrong he'll be back but just in case I'm not - would the reason for ghosting matter to you?

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Sure, knowing that his reason for ending your involvement wasn't fully about you would probably ease some of the disappointment and pain of rejection, but using ghosting as the method to break it off is really more a comment on who he is as a person. I think ghosting is cowardly once you get past a second date. He chose to ghost you because it was easier for him to avoid conflict and you possibly trying to change his mind.

 

It's unfortunate, but the two of you were simply incompatible due to his lifestyle. Best to continue moving forward and realize that questions such as these do not benefit you in the healing process. Even if he did like you, he's not going out of his way to be with you, and that's all you really need to know.

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Maybe he did seem like a nice guy and did have good intentions with you, but considering the amount of times you went out and the amount of time it seems you were investing in each other, the courteous thing for him to do would have been to reply to you and let you know why he couldn’t proceed with the relationship anymore.

 

Ignoring your messages and essentially leaving you hanging is cowardly and the easy way out.

 

Put it this way, if the roles were flipped, what would you have done? Something tells me you would have given him the courtesy of a response.

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I'm guessing the mother cornered him and gave him an ultimatum about the kids and all that, and he probably had to delete your contact information in front of her to make some grand gesture. Yeah, you got treated pretty shabbily in this. You didn't do anything wrong. But he owed you an explanation.

 

But it's difficult with kids. I don't even know how anyone would find the time to date. Obviously, he found it difficult to date too.

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Sure, knowing that his reason for ending your involvement wasn't fully about you would probably ease some of the disappointment and pain of rejection, but using ghosting as the method to break it off is really more a comment on who he is as a person. I think ghosting is cowardly once you get past a second date. He chose to ghost you because it was easier for him to avoid conflict and you possibly trying to change his mind.

 

It's unfortunate, but the two of you were simply incompatible due to his lifestyle. Best to continue moving forward and realize that questions such as these do not benefit you in the healing process. Even if he did like you, he's not going out of his way to be with you, and that's all you really need to know.

 

Well said.

 

This guy is a real coward. I think that is terrible that he did not give you the simple courtesy of breaking things off. Terrible.

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I agree with Miss Canuck, how great can he be if he doesn't even have manners to let you know what was going on? It's hardly difficult to send someone a quick text or even a quick phone call to say that now is not the right time, either maybe in the future or wish you well. That was a very jerk move to drop you like that.

 

I have a feeling too that there's more to the story than what you know. Of coruse it's easy to blame the mother but in truth, you have no idea what actually went on or what is going on.

 

I have to admit though, I side with the mother if it's about the kids. Getting them to meet you is far too soon and truth be told he more than likely hasn't been too responsible if his mom is on his back.

Bottom line, his kids need him more than you two need to date.

It sounds like everything was off, best to just let it go and consider it the wrong time and wrong situation.

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How long were you actually dating exclusively? It sounds more like he had too many problems, mommy issues/ex issues and is too bitter to be capable of dating on any consistent or serious basis. or he was simply much less invested than you and/or dating others locally as well.

 

You seem very obsessed with the mother. Did he live with her? Or just complain incessantly about her and blame her for all his custody and ex problems? Did he use her as an excuse for not seeing you?

 

It sounds like you dodged a bullet and this never even got off the ground as a regular, exclusive dating situation. Stop contacting him and block and delete him. Next time don't get this involved with someone's mountain of problems who doesn't even want to date exclusively or make time for you.

I met a guy about 9 months ago online.We live about an hour drive apart, he has full custody of his two kids, and works quite a bit. there is no ex involvement to share parental responsibilities I was okay with getting together 2-4 times a month and giving it time to grow. He seemed distant via text that week and then he just stopped. I tried contacting him and he didn't reply.
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Thanks everyone for taking the time to reply.

 

I think I'm confused by my reaction because normally in a situation like this I would, of course, be upset initially but that wouldn't change putting it behind me as a natural course. I can't explain to myself why this is different... I have tried, believe me. I think that's why I wrote. I know what happened, what the end result signifies, and how I would react any other time. That it's not a deliberate action to feel understanding for his side when I'm fully aware I have every right to be angry or label him insignificant to me after his actions doesn't make sense to me either.

 

Whether he will try to reconnect or not, I guess right now I'm working through feeling this way about things when I would normally have shut the door.

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Over-investment like this (even though certainly not worth it) can make it seem as if you lost something because you spent way too much time and energy on this with very little return, so overall just a very bad investment. Focus on dating viable prospects, not soap operas that suck you into drama but offer nothing.

 

Reconnect? That is up to you, not him. You need to delete and block him and move on. Next time do not over-invest in a losing proposition like this guy. If someone has too many problems and too little time for you, just say no and move on. Treat yourself better than this and do not play therapist to anyone and listen to all their complaints, plethora of problems and issues etc.

Whether he will try to reconnect or not, I guess right now I'm working through feeling this way about things when I would normally have shut the door.

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Does the reason make a difference?

 

A difference to what, wanting him back someday? No.

 

While it's easier to know that a bad match isn't due to something I've done, I'm just not attracted to people who are hapless about someone else running their life. Adding a feckless exit to that wouldn't raise his appeal.

 

I don't tend to romanticize weakness into a barrier that a man will someday overcome to seek me out again. By the time such a guy would ghost me, I'd already be too turned off to respect him or want to keep seeing him.

Edited by catfeeder
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@ Wiseman2

 

Although valid to ask, your questions have quite a bit of assumption behind them.

We knew each other 7 months and were exclusive for 5. He did not live with her nor did he blame or use her as an excuse. He put the responsibility on him when she gave him a hard time. I was there when the phone calls from her came. You can say all you want I'm reading into things or saw what I wanted to see but I saw signs of a parent who loved her son and grandchildren but was punishing him for choices he made she didn't approve of that got him to his current situation of being a single parent.

 

I'm not obsessed with her. My thoughts on her are contained to what affected me, but thanks for tossing that one in. If you want to call an opinion on how I think a parent should not be bitter about a role she chose to take on yet appeared to do things to keep that role going when he was trying to seek some balance, then go ahead and call me obsessed for a view I'd apply to anyone.

 

I'm not sure where you gathered I was contacting him to tell me to stop because I haven't been. And, fair enough for the statement about making time since it is follows that he didn't or else my situation or this thread wouldn't exist. However, it is dismissive to assume there wasn't any kind of want for him to do so.

 

I do not disagree he has a number of things to get in order before being able to commit to dating. I found that out after the fact. That does not mean I don't have the right to work through what transpired or look past the bottom line when doing so. Your action for getting through something may be to block it out and assume anyone who doesn't is wasting mental energy. I find it more helpful to put everything in an order I can understand.

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This is confusing and hurtful. I think ghosting is such a cowardly way out.

 

I once had a guy text me to stop seeing me because he decided to get back together with his ex. I was initially hurt, but I responded to thank him for letting me know, and to wish him well. I mean, he could have ghosted. That had to take courage, as I could have blasted him.

 

This guy you're speaking of? You went out enough, that you established a relationship, and even even mentioned meeting the kids! And then he drops off the radar, not even responding to you. What. a. jerk.

 

To answer your original question, does the reason make a difference? Short answer: no. Longer answer: well yes, if he was in an accident where his car went under an 18-wheeler and he's been in traction this entire time, without access to a phone or use of his fingers. Otherwise? No.

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@ Wiseman2

 

Although valid to ask, your questions have quite a bit of assumption behind them.

We knew each other 7 months and were exclusive for 5. He did not live with her nor did he blame or use her as an excuse. He put the responsibility on him when she gave him a hard time. I was there when the phone calls from her came. You can say all you want I'm reading into things or saw what I wanted to see but I saw signs of a parent who loved her son and grandchildren but was punishing him for choices he made she didn't approve of that got him to his current situation of being a single parent.

 

I'm not obsessed with her. My thoughts on her are contained to what affected me, but thanks for tossing that one in. If you want to call an opinion on how I think a parent should not be bitter about a role she chose to take on yet appeared to do things to keep that role going when he was trying to seek some balance, then go ahead and call me obsessed for a view I'd apply to anyone.

 

I'm not sure where you gathered I was still contacting him to tell me to stop because I haven't been. And, fair enough for the statement about making time since it is follows that he didn't at the end or else my situation or this thread wouldn't exist. However, it is dismissive to assume there wasn't any kind of want for him to do so. And yes, I'm aware of the difference between wanting to do something and seeing it through. I know the end result, I'm the one dealing with it. Sure, the end result is what matters for the reality that we are no longer involved. That does not mean it is accurate to go back and be a mind reader claiming to know precisely what a person's intentions were every step of the way. The fact that something does not exist currently does not change it did exist at one point.

 

I do not disagree he has a number of things to get in order before being able to commit to dating. I found that out after the fact. That does not mean I don't have the right to work through what transpired or look past the bottom line when doing so. Your action for getting through something may be to block it out and assume anyone who doesn't is wasting mental energy. I find it more helpful to put everything in an order I can understand.

 

I thank you for writing a response that motivated me to react. Whether I take exception to what I perceived as being minimized, it all helps put things into perspective and I have respect for anything that can compel that :)

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...Anyway, I may be wrong he'll be back but just in case I'm not - would the reason for ghosting matter to you?

 

Hope it works out (haven't read down thread yet). Reasons always matter, they may not be enough, they don't necessarily excuse behavior, but they matter.

 

My suspicion is his mother gave him an ultimatum; and basically he had to choose the welfare of his kids or you.

His mother may be checking his phone, and he may not want to or be able to lie to her; so he may have a hard time letting you know. I can imagine that he is also embarrassed and depressed by this.

 

If this is the case, it's completely unacceptable behavior on his mom's part; but what is he to do? Lose his job and have his kids lose their home? Sounds like he can't afford someone else to help with the kids.

 

I wouldn't wait for him though, but would listen to what he has to say if he reappears.

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@Algos,

Thank you for getting what I'm saying. Exactly as you said, the reasons may not be enough or excuse the behavior. In this case they do matter to me for processing what happened. I don't know why they are this important to me in this instance other than they are. I'm realizing that understanding his behavior doesn't mean I condone it, regardless how those two things are lumped together by popular opinion in situations like this.

 

I'm not waiting and hinging my life on his return. I'd like it if he did, even if only to get an aspect of closure that I didn't have to generate on my own.

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Still though,..you have to really wonder about a guy who got himself into a situation like that. He sounds irresponsible or tied to his mother.

Not the best investment, in my opinion.

Do you really want to be with a man who does as mommy says? Regardless if she is helping him or not, he should really grow a pair.

 

I would assume as well that you would have always come third place, his kids first, then his mom, then you and no doubt the mother would have made life hell for you.

Honestly, you dodged a huge bullet.

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