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My toxic relationship and ignoring red flags


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I would like to share my story, as I have been lingering on this forum for some time now, as well as a couple of others. I had always hoped it would be a success story after our break up but unfortunately it didn't work out that way (you probably wont be surprised).

 

Please excuse the length of this post. It's going to include a large history of this relationship. The information is going to be littered with negatives, as its hard to forget them. It's easy to bring them up as the events around them were generally positive for the most part and not worth mentioning. Writing this down has helped me move on.

I am just looking to put my thoughts on paper and maybe bond with a couple of people who have gone through similar experiences. Hopefully it provides some good reading material.

 

Here goes...

 

I met this girl at the beginning of February 2020 and was with her until the end of October 2020. We met on an online dating site and it started off well. We had substance to our conversations, something that is hard for me to find in another person. I am very picky and having stimulating conversation is a must for me. She lives just over an hour away in a different city. We spoke for about a week and we planned our first meet up. It was going to be on a weekday (turning out to be my birthday). We made plans and I expected to hear from her on the day, at least to say Happy Birthday and then we would take it from there. But I heard nothing so just left it alone. It got to 10pm and I get a Happy Birthday message, by this time obviously too late to meet up. She came up with excuses of why it never materialised, but we made plans for the following weekend.

 

First time I met her and the date was alright. I wouldn't say sparks were flying from the get go but I was definitely intrigued with her as a person and I later understand that she was intrigued by me also. We slept together as she of course stayed the night, given she lives in a different city. The following day she tells me she cheated on her last boyfriend (no not with me, but first red flag). I later found out that it ended maybe three months prior to me. They met and lived in a different country and lived their for about a year. She came back and cheated on him for extremely shallow and self serving reasons, and she told me he cheated on her back after.

 

There was a gap of two weeks before I saw her next. She was wishy washy in making plans. I reached out eventually after expecting her to get back to me and we made vague plans. I was going to be in the same city as her to view an art show with friends. While I was at the show she was busy. I asked her what she was up to while we were chatting and she said "None of my business!!!" lol. Whether she meant it as a joke I do not know. I told her I would leave her to it and then suddenly she becomes immediately available. So we meet up. She doesn't show up with good energy, I could tell something was off, but we had a reasonably good night anyway. However, at one point, for some reason she told me "I don't owe you anything". I don't think I instigated her to say this as I wasn't expecting much from the relationship at this point, but she said it quite cuttingly nonetheless (another red flag).  

 

Some time after this we were together and she asked me a question that related back to an event during the night that I stayed at hers. She asked me "Was it you who stayed the night when x happened?". I said yes. I then said how awkward would it be if she'd brought this up and it hadn't been me who had stayed, shining some lightheartedness on the situation in a joking manner. She said "Well, you wouldn't really get to have much of a say in that matter." or something along those lines, as if to say "I can do as I please as we are not together". Again, cutting and emotionally unavailable, there was really no need to be so blunt about it. We had not made anything official and I knew this.

 

Over the next couple of months our relationship began to develop. My feelings began getting stronger and I opened up to her about it. We did bond very well, the most strongly I've bonded with anyone of the opposite sex. It just felt right the majority of the time. But occasionally she would say things that screamed she was emotionally unavailable. It always kind of burned me. However, I perhaps stupidly persevered as I knew I could really love this girl, and I did eventually, regardless of the initial statements that came up. I never had much of a gut feeling it could go wrong, but my head would sometimes tell me so. I chose to ignore it.

 

Coronavirus came and she left to go back home. We kept up a lot of communication. We could talk like a house on fire. Once the first lockdown was eased she was able to come back to the city. We made plans almost straight away. However, when I asked her to meet before she was back she ignored me for two entire days. I was genuinely surprised at the length of time it took to respond and thought this was the end of our relationship and it actually brought me to tears. But after the two days she messaged me, excused herself as was supposedly extremely sick (probably bull***). She told me she couldn't meet that weekend as would be meeting her brother. Then the plans with her brother were cancelled and she made plans with her friends. She then proceeded to ignore me until the next day. Given the negativity in the relationship and her unfaithfulness I became insecure about the situation. I told myself that she must be with another person (she may or may not have been). I just couldn't fully trust her given that she had cheated on her previous boyfriend, and it did sometimes worry me that it would happen to me. The following day I told her we should just chalk the relationship up to experience and go our separate ways. I gave her a vague reason but then she probed and I told her why. She convinced me I was just being insecure and I would have to trust her. I let it go and we continued.

 

It will be hard for people to understand why I stuck around. I saw some really good characteristics in this girl, I saw characteristics in her that made a great partner, but she was fundamentally broken deep down and had her demons. Our good times were really really strong, we could just be in each other's company and feel at one with each other. We could laugh and have lots of joy and shared love. I knew she loved me and I loved her. We would talk about a future, what type of place we would like to live in. I loved visiting her and loved the city she lived in, open to the idea of one day moving there. I loved when she would visit me. She told me that she was considering moving to my city as I own my flat there and it would help us close the distance (which didn't help matters). This idea did eventually change though. It really felt great the majority of the time, until issues came up. I could sometimes feel there was a wall up on her side, her guard up (I addressed this) and she never fully made herself vulnerable throughout the relationship. I knew that I couldn't make myself fully vulnerable as she wasn't making steps to be vulnerable at all. I always led the vulnerability in the relationship. I tried to help and guide her along the way by opening myself up to her. I was always hoping that she would get better over time. There were moments where she was vulnerable, but I feel it was on and off. Coupled by the fact that she could often be defensive, as if in fight or flight, and sometimes be quite snappy and dismissive of my emotions. It was honestly as if she was scared to really give herself to me. 

 

Our relationship continued to deepen. We would get close but then she would often say something to create friction, a critical statement of something she didn't like me doing, or clothes I would wear. It didn't bother me an awful lot as I am very confident in myself, I feel good in what I say and do and I am someone who doesn't allow that type of ribbing to bother me. Looking back our relationship was fundamentally unhealthy at times. I'd feel the love and then feel pushed away. I was always ready to walk away. I also came to learn that during adversity she would often close off, be unwilling to communicate, pretty much showing no ability to be able to discuss the problems. We would manage to put things behind us but I don't think we really managed to resolve these issues. She told me she avoided conflict, and she definitely did. But when the bad times came she would just appear passive aggressive in her actions because she close herself off. She never spoke about her needs in the relationship. I

 

About a month before our break up we went on a weekend trip away. I could sense things were falling apart over the course of the trip. For example, she was being negative/moaning about my concern over my mobile data. I had run out of data and was using a new sim card. The data wasn't loading properly on it and I needed it to navigate around the area. I had hired a car as I don't own one and don't often drive, so I wanted to make it as stress free as possible. She was obviously coming from a place that we should just be enjoying our time together but I don't really think she considered how I was feeling about it. I resolved the situation over about three hours. The more I showed it was a concern the more she would be unaccommodating and make me feel bad. Another example was on the day we were leaving. We stopped off at a cafe and the intention was just to get a takeaway coffee. When we went inside the cafe it was quite nice but the music was far too loud for it's own relaxing decor. She asked if I wanted to stay, I told her it was too loud and she sort of scoffed and tutted. Again, disregarding my emotions and being self serving. If it was a case that she had changed her mind and wanted to stay in the cafe then I would have understood this if she had just told me that, but she didn't communicate her needs. She never communicated her needs in the entire relationship. 

 

Not long after the trip we made plans to spend the weekend together. Closer to the time she changed her plans. She had moved into a new flat with new people not long before this as her lease was expired on the old one. She told me that she wanted to spend the night with her flatmates on Friday. She also told me that she would be meeting her brother during the day on Saturday (who lives in my city) so would come and meet me after. So she was now changing plans to give the Saturday night and some of Sunday. At this point I was getting a little fed up with the relationship, I told her just to leave it this weekend. I was a little annoyed that she just changed plans and expected I'd be okay with it. She never really gave me the option. I was perhaps being a bit harsh as she would be in my city anyway so why not let her come by? But I guess I was fed up with being hurt. She got on at me for not accommodating her position of why it should be fine for her to see me for basically just the evening and it bothered me that she was being selfish. I broke it off there and then. I will admit that it was an emotional whim but I should have stuck by my decision.

 

After my emotions settled I regretted the decision. I couldn't forget, regardless of her ***ty attitude from time to time, that I really did love this girl. I messaged her and she ended up coming around. She was the most walled up I have seen her from the get go. Kind of understandable since I'd broke it up now and broke it off before. We spoke at length (mostly me, since she doesn't communicate her underlying issues, again, conflict avoidant). She just said that I can be difficult at times, which I'm sure I can be. If I'd ever try to get her to tell me some examples so I could improve she would struggle to tell me. The moments when we were together and she did tell me I'd done something that bothered her it would come out semi explosive and came from nowhere. It never allowed me the chance to really understand what I was doing, and it always seemed a little bit unfair. I did actually begin to cry when I was sitting there discussing my issues with the relationship, I couldn't hold it in. She comforted me but that was about it, as I knew she didn't know what to say. I was meant to be the rock but she had well and truly beaten me down.

 

We put the situation behind us. Buuuuut, maybe a week or two later she planned to come over to mine on the Friday, She would be at her friend's flat beforehand and agreed that she would get the 9:30pm bus. This was important to me as she would be arriving at night ad she would be uncomfortable being in the city centre alone. I agreed I would come get her as she arrived, which would involve me travelling to the city centre to get there around 10:30pm. Disappointingly, at 9:30pm I text her asking if she was leaving yet. I called, no answer. I heard nothing until 10:00pm. She text me saying sorry and that she hadn't realised the time, and would get to my city around 12:00pm. This changed everything, as I had put my night to the side to accommodate when she may be arriving. She has a watch on her wrist and I'd have thought that given she was the one to tell me what her plan was that she would at least keep an eye on it, especially since she asked me to come get her. I was obviously bothered by this and just told her to leave it, as it was now an inconvenience for me. She called me up and didn't sound to be in any regret but immediately challenged my decision, disregarding my internal emotions. I knew as soon as she phoned me that it was going to feel toxic and as if she was going to try bully me into it. In the back of my mind I thought she would just come by in the morning the following day (a misunderstanding). She left the conversation and I could tell she was upset. I felt bad and we exchanged a few text messages and at one point I just asked if she would come tomorrow. She ignored me. She ignored me until the following evening around 8:00pm. I was so frustrated by the fact that she was again avoiding communication when we were having an issue. I called her a load of times, she ignored them. I text her telling her to pick up, she ignored them. When she FINALLY did pick up the phone I was relatively calm, trying to sound somewhat sympathetic that she may be annoyed/upset by the previous nights events. But she bit me and told me she didn't regret stonewalling me and "would do it again"!!! That was it. Again, myself being emotional, I told her that enough was enough, and this was the end. I didn't feel I deserved to be punished this way when she was the one to create the issue in the first place. 

 

Throughout all the time we had our issues, I reiterated and reiterated what we had to do. I told her she had walls up. I tried my best to care for her so that she would let them disappear. I told her we need to be team players. I told her we need to communicate. But time and time again she showed that she was unable to do this. At times I honestly felt like the enemy.

 

Days passed and we began talking again. We both accepted each other back. This was now the third time I'd ended it. Looking back I honestly feel terrible for this. But the way I was feeling felt like I had no other options. I felt like I was fighting a losing battle. I can not fully understand how this must have made her feel and I know it would have made her feel terrible. But the relationship just wasn't working. 

 

We only met up a few times after this. The last time I saw her she told me she needed space. She would usually do this during conflicts, instead of getting to the nitty gritty by talking things over. But I gave her all the space she needed. I saw her maybe 2 or 3 times during this. Many of the weekends she would would disappear for the evening via text. I asked her if she was okay. She told me she was depressed. We still kept in regular contact and I was always loving and caring towards her. She disappeared one evening just after I'd asked if we would be seeing each other the following week. I was annoyed that she was disappearing again so I told her that she was going to create a problem if she was going to disappear. That was too far for her and the next evening she told me we need to talk. I agreed. She called me up and told me that she was not ready to be my girlfriend/in a relationship. She was reluctant to ever put a title on us, but we did agree exclusivity. I told her I had a feeling she was not ready to fully commit throughout the entire relationship. She told me she had thought she was ready but realised not. I could tell that she was finding it difficult to fully end it. She told me she didn't want to and didn't want it to be final. I proposed that we try not talking for the next two weeks and see how we feel. At the end of this time I was in pain and probed her to do what she had to do. I didn't think that there was any other options. She called me on the Friday and briefly spoke to me as was in the supermarket. I attempted to fight for the relationship somewhat, and she continued to allude to the idea that this wasn't the end. When we did eventually speak properly over the phone there was a lot of grief and crying from both of us.

 

We stayed in contact for the next 4 or so weeks. I didn't have any ill feelings at this time, had some questions to ask ect. She continuously told me that she needed time, needed to be alone, was worried that my feelings will have changed by the time she was ready (I told her that they probably wont), basically make sure that I would keep the door open, told me there was hope. At one point I mentioned how it would probably take me 6 months to move on to someone else, she told me it would be a year. I mentioned  that if she had to be with other men during this time and planned on coming back, there would be no future relationship. I respected the idea that she had to deal with her demons and to be alone. I respected the fact that she was probably aware that she brought some baggage to the relationship and was going to figure things out. If she needed other people to do this, rather than working it out with me, I'd be disgusted.

 

Eventually I told her we should stop talking as I knew it wasn't doing me any favours in moving on. She told me she didn't want to cut contact and gave more of the impression that there was hope left for us in the future. We left it on that note. 

 

For the following 3.5 months I never reached out. She messaged me at Christmas and I replied without expecting a follow up. I was not bitter and didn't want to come across as so. I was adamant that it would have to be her as it would only be her that could prove that things would be different. The issues that came up were more often than not created by her and I didn't want it to ever be the same relationship if she was to come back. But she was always on my mind. I couldn't not think about her. I couldn't stop thinking about the past, the issues we had, what would be different, what would we have to change, how could we work it out, could we work it out? All this because the door was still open. And again, I genuinely did love this girl and prayed it would work out.

 

I spoke with a family member and told them I couldn't get over it. They told me I should just reach out and see where she was at. I considered this to be the best thing for me, as I was stuck in the past, and I have no regrets that I broke NC, as you will soon see. She was very responsive to me when I reached out. We caught up briefly. It felt different to text her like it had been in the past. I asked if we could talk on the phone. She basically ignored the request and chose to speak about the other topics that I was mentioning. I asked her if she didn't want to chat to me. She told me it just felt weird to speak on the phone. I took that as she had completely moved on, and suggested that this chapter was closed. She told me it wasn't like that and that she just had nothing to say because of life moving so slowly in lockdown. I told her I understood and that she knew that the lines of communication were open and that she should call me in a couple of weeks, which she seemed to agree on.

 

A couple of weeks pass and I heard nothing. I wanted to wrap this up so I text her asking if she would like to chat the following week. She ignored the request and deflected to another topic, quite hilariously. She didn't want to talk on the phone, and we finalised things there. She was only going to offer friendship which I do not have any desire for. There is too much to mend IMO and there would be a lot of resentment. Even if we were to try things again, it would have been a mountain to climb, with a lot to prove

 

To put the icing on the cake of this entirely dysfunctional situation, and to my extreme disappointment, she told me she was dating someone knew. I asked because I had a hunch, given how avoidant she was being to speaking on the phone and how in general she was being quite dismissive/detached in her tone. This is the girl who convinced me there was some sort of future, when I'd have been happy to leave it when it was over, but now hope was gone. In her words "Yeah, there is always some hope, but it just didn't work out that way" or something the like. It hadn't even been 4 months... It is so trashy.

 

So that's the end of that. I am not going to lie to you folks, I am not in a good place mentally due to the entire relationship and now this, as you'd expect. I wholeheartedly loved this girl, more than I've ever loved anyone else. I know I know, but look at all the issues we were having. It's very easy to to highlight the negatives when you're trying to vent/get over the relationship. She is not a bad person, she had lots of attractive and good qualities about her, we had some loving and great times, and I know she never meant to put any of this on me. I shouldn't have ignored the red flags. It doesn't surprised me at all that it never worked out and it ended in the worst way possible. She does not have the required characteristics that are were fundamental to the success of our relationship. Communication, vulnerability, cooperation. But nonetheless I am pretty devastated that it never worked out. I know she was too when it was coming to the end. 

 

I do feel sorry for her, whether I can help it or not, as she is her ow worst enemy. Her two prior relationships ended due to her cheating. The first partner experienced her cheating on him with the new guy she met abroad, and then she cheated on the new guy with a one night stand when she got back at home. So she has cheated in her last two relationships, then met me 3 months later, and has now met someone else approx or less than 3 months later. I have no respect for her actions, especially when she continuously told me she had to be alone. She is just going to continue on in this self destructive path until it can't go on any longer. I have been looking in to commitment phobia and she seems to display many many traits of this. She compartmentalised me from her family (never even told them about me, says she doesn't tell them about any of her relationships, even though she has met mine), kept me out of reach of her friends, never gave us an official label and basically sabotaged our relationship through finding tiny/petty faults in me. I feel that through her actions she actually wanted me to be the one who ended it.

 

I am not shifting any sort of the blame, I know I am no saint nor perfect. It would have been great if she could have just told me what those issues may have been, maybe we could have worked it out. Maybe we would have both fought for the relationship. I will always feel bad for trying to end it, as that is the most damage I can see that I was doing. She told me she was insecure. She told me that I might one day hurt her. My eyes are welling up about how things didn't work out. I did have faith things could have if we could have just sorted out the issues, but that was too much too ask for. And my mind knows full well, as you may realise, after reading this too. I think this story says a lot about me and I have perhaps my own demons to deal with. I have learned a lot about myself and what I need in a future partner. I have learned a lot about why I may have been attracted to this girl in the first place. At least I can take that away from the situation.

 

I hope that someone can get something from this story and not have to go through the pain that I have gone through. I should have shut the door a long time ago. I should have shut the door from the beginning. But I had faith! I still have faith that things could have been different. I believed that much in the bond that we had, regardless of the issues she brought to the table. The issues she brought are on her, not on me. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, onwardswego said:

I should have shut the door from the beginning. 

Thats the key. Cutting your losses at the right time.

Not hanging around the slot machine wishing and hoping "on faith" that this time, the next time, etc. you'll hit the jackpot.

Too many people drag things out for way too long. That's why they keep investing in losing propositions until they're emotionally, mentally and otherwise bankrupt.

Life is not only about acquisition, it's about letting go. Letting go is not a loss. It's cleaning house to make room.

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1 hour ago, onwardswego said:

I should have shut the door a long time ago. I should have shut the door from the beginning

Yes, absolutely. 

You ignored too many red flags and it gained you...nothing. This is why when someone treats you poorly from the get-go, you walk away

Not towards them, in an attempt to get them to see your value. That's not how it works when someone is not really interested. 

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21 minutes ago, MissCanuck said:

Yes, absolutely. 

You ignored too many red flags and it gained you...nothing. This is why when someone treats you poorly from the get-go, you walk away

Not towards them, in an attempt to get them to see your value. That's not how it works when someone is not really interested. 

For sure I did, there was light throughout the relationship and I was blinded by it.

I was never really trying to show them my value. At times I did feel valued but at times I did not, but they were such small instances for me that I was able to generally blow it off as it didn’t affect me on a tremendous level. I just considered it her problem that she may eventually deal with, something coming from a deep insecurity of herself.

I don’t think there was lack of interest. She invested in the relationship. She told me she was trying to open up but I wasn’t helping her. I think this was just an excuse to blame it on me, as maybe something she just couldn’t overcome within herself. If she had ever told me how I could help in making her feel better then it may have solved a lot of issues. 

She was always available to me, always open to meeting, always set aside time, never really made it difficult to see each other through the good times of the relationship. But so often she would find faults and create tension over very little and I saw it as a way to keep me at arms length. I really feel she has commitment issues given her track record of cheating and how she has moved on to someone else now without really healing.

 

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15 minutes ago, onwardswego said:

She was always available to me, always open to meeting, always set aside time, never really made it difficult to see each other through the good times of the relationship
 

And that's just not enough. 

As you mention, there were plenty of times when she blew you off completely. Someone who in genuinely interested in you and has a shred of respect for you does not behave the way she did, repeatedly. 

 

 

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2 minutes ago, MissCanuck said:

And that's just not enough. 

As you mention, there were plenty of times when she blew you off completely. Someone who in genuinely interested in you and has a shred of respect for you does not behave the way she did, repeatedly. 

 

 

Personally I don’t think there was lack of interest. Lack of respect yes. We wouldn’t have continued for 9 months if she just wasn’t that interested. She wouldn’t have bothered continuing on when I kept breaking it off.

Do you not think that people try and sabotage relationships when they’re just not ready to be there for someone else? She did so with her last two boyfriends and now me.

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4 minutes ago, onwardswego said:

Personally I don’t think there was lack of interest. Lack of respect yes. We wouldn’t have continued for 9 months if she just wasn’t that interested. She wouldn’t have bothered continuing on when I kept breaking it off.

I don't mean she wasn't interested at all, but I also don't believe her interest was anywhere near as high as yours. 

And yes, I believe some people sabotage their relationships. I'm not sure that's the case here. There's a difference between sabotaging, and just not really giving a crap about other people and doing whatever floats their boat anyway. 

She sounds immature and selfish, so you're well rid of her. 

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2 minutes ago, MissCanuck said:

I don't mean she wasn't interested at all, but I also don't believe her interest was anywhere near as high as yours. 

And yes, I believe some people sabotage their relationships. I'm not sure that's the case here. There's a difference between sabotaging, and just not really giving a crap about other people and doing whatever floats their boat anyway. 

She sounds immature and selfish, so you're well rid of her. 

For sure, I’m glad it’s behind me and finally over. I felt really good before meeting her. I was happy to be alone and enjoyed my own company. I wasn’t really looking for anything but it just seemed to happen. 
 

I can already feel the emotions that I felt before with myself. I lost that during the relationship. I lost myself a bit. She was often trying to change me and control my emotions. 
 

Awk well, it was a great learning experience and I learned a lot about myself and what I want from a partner in the future.

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This sounds like a relatively short (the time you spent in person) casual dating arrangement where she enjoyed you and was interested in you when it was convenient for her, wanted to keep her options open always (saying you need to be alone doesn't necessarily mean alone -it can mean -apart from you and then she might want to hook up with someone else).  I have a sense that you've had a hard time finding someone to have substantive conversations with because you focus on people who are unavailable and/or objectively attractive - you value looks, you value the chase.  Above someone you have something in common with and who is available.

She  told you who she is from the get go.  She's not broken necessarily -you're not her therapist -she told you who she was from the get go, she enjoys dating and having sex, she doesn't want to commit to you -doesn't make her broken.  And you're not broken just because you continue to chase after someone who is far far less interested in you than you are in them, far less attached to you than you are to them -makes it really easy for you -you really never have to be vulnerable in the  way people in committed relationships are.  

I'm glad you learned a lot -that's a huge positive!! I hope you pick someone with whom you have reciprocal, relatively equal interest next time and someone who wants to potentially be committed to you.

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6 minutes ago, Batya33 said:

dating arrangement where she enjoyed you and was interested in you when it was convenient for her, wanted to keep her options open always (saying you need to be alone doesn't necessarily mean alone -it can mean -apart from you and then she might want to hook up with someone else). 

She  told you who she is from the get go.  She's not broken necessarily -you're not her therapist -she told you who she was from the get go, she enjoys dating and having sex, she doesn't want to commit to you -doesn't make her broken.  

 

That’s the thing though, it wasn’t a case of her picking and choosing when she was available to me. We were somewhat joined at the hip the majority of the relationship. She was generally very loving at times and we were in somewhat of a relationship. When she heard that I was still seeing someone at the beginning of the relationship she was hurt by this. But we never brought up the talk and I always thought that INITIALLY she was keeping her options open yes, and she gave me signs that I shouldn’t “put all my eggs in one basket”. It seems she was just never ready to have a serious talk or label things throughout the relationship. 
 

She never told me that she enjoyed having sex and dating around from the get go. She hinted that she did not want an open relationship with me. This was the most she could communicate her needs in terms of labelling the relationship.

 

She did genuinely mean she needed to be alone, I believe, at the time of her saying this. When I probed if it was just a case she wanted to be single again, and indicated there would not be a future if she was wanting to sleep around, she assured me she had to be alone as she hadn’t given herself the time since previous relationships. I respected this, but it turned out that being alone was perhaps too daunting for her.

 

Is it not somewhat unhealthy that someone continues to go into relationships one after the other, often times cheating, often times rebounding? The cycle only continues. 
 

She did put a lot into the relationship and and I know she loved me, there was no doubt about this. We were open about our love for each other. I could tell that she was generally unhappy most of the time, whether that was with herself or something else. I could see the sadness in her eyes. I could see that she was scared to be vulnerable, scared that I might hurt her. Even though she cheated on her ex, after he did the same thing back she felt it was worse because he built an emotional connection with the person whereas hers was just a ONS. Deflecting the blame. But she was obviously still hurt by this and would respond to messages from her ex throughout the relationship, even though he was still with the new girl. She obviously had unresolved issues from this.

 

There is no question that I was a relationship which was helping her to get over her past. But now she is just on to the next to fill that void that came after me. Whether broken or not, I think that’s a sign of emotional unavailability and commitment phobia.

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7 hours ago, onwardswego said:

I am not shifting any sort of the blame, I know I am no saint nor perfect. It would have been great if she could have just told me what those issues may have been, maybe we could have worked it out. Maybe we would have both fought for the relationship.

- Wow, a lot happened in this 😞 

Sadly though, neither of you were that compatible.  Yes, obviously she was kinda lost. She's got a rough track record- and this set you off early on, didn't it?

I doubt you would have been able to 'work it out'... or be able to 'fight' for this relationship - was just too unstable ( as you kept breaking it off).

7 hours ago, onwardswego said:

I will always feel bad for trying to end it, as that is the most damage I can see that I was doing. She told me she was insecure. She told me that I might one day hurt her.

- First off. you need to stop seeing this as you are to blame.  It takes two.  You could tell early on she was not right - but you kept going with it.  You kept allowing her back to try again.

You see now, the red flags- but because you 'had feelings', you went there time & time again.

- When someone breaks it off, is for reasons.  Should you agree to try again, that which caused the BU, were they fixed.. better?

- She told you she was insecure, but that has nothing to do with you.  That is on her.  You could not 'fix' or change that....

- Of course, breaking things off can hurt, but she also hurt you.... (see, incompatible)- really no future with her.

Yes, chalk this up as a learning experience - is often how it goes.

I feel you really did not know her well enough.  You were involved less than a year -- I feel she does have some really deep issue's- of which you could not handle- nor will the next guy. ( until SHE can get herself together & deal with her inner demons) -- she really should be on her own a good while to deal with this, as it will carry on and on.

Anyways, it is done and you need to step back and realize how rough it all was.  As I said, and experience.

Now, you can work on accepting & healing from it all... TC of you now... and in time, you will feel okay again & move on  🙂 .

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What is this -forgive me - nonsense about "labels" -this is not about labels -she didn't want to be in a committed relationship with you - it's not that she eschewed "labels" - when you tell someone you want to be exclusive that is not just a label -that is a substantive commitment.  Which she did not want with you.  Joined at the hip just means that for the couple of months you dated in person she wanted to spend time with you.  But not be committed to you.  Two different things.  Somehow you took it on yourself to analyze her past even though you only dated her a couple of months and you are not her therapist/was just hearing one side of the story, anyway.  

She wasn't ready to have a serious talk because she wasn't interested in committing to you.  People who are interested in committing to you will want you to know ASAP how they feel lest someone else snaps you up.  She remained single the whole time you were dating her -you two were not married, engaged or even exclusive -so of course she wasn't going to tell you whether she wanted to be "single"  - she was single.

Sure people can have unhealthy patterns - and if they want they see a therapist about it.  You acted in an unhealthy way too -lying to yourself about her not wanting to "label" when what really upset you was her not wanting to commit to you, telling yourself that she was with you to "get over her past" -again that's a huge assumption -how about instead the simple truth most likely -she went on dates with you and liked having sex with you when it was convenient for her with the assuredness that she could keep all options open other than perhaps agreeing to monogamy.  It wasn't that she wanted an "open" relationship -she simply wanted to date you and be able to date others -simple as that.

I think if you accept that she wasn't into you enough to want a commitment you'll move on much faster and make better choices rather than ruminating about her past, analyzing, overthinking and describing this as if it was some sort of LTR.

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3 hours ago, onwardswego said:

Is it not somewhat unhealthy that someone continues to go into relationships one after the other, often times cheating, often times rebounding? The cycle only continues. 
 

 

It's unhealthy to YOU to get involved with such a person. As for her, she is doing what pleases her, so for her it works and she has no reason to change what she is doing. For her, this is just fine because ultimately she is in control of her choices.

There are really two things you should take away from this. One is when someone tells you, "Hi, I'm a cheater." - RUN! That's it. No questions, no listening to bs excuses, just run. 

Two is you are not a fixer or a therapist and it's really disrespectful and bordering on absurd to think that when someone doesn't see life, relationships or connections as you do, that they are broken. That's a really good way for you to be the one who gets stuck in constant cycles of toxic relationships.

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7 minutes ago, Batya33 said:

What is this -forgive me - nonsense about "labels" -this is not about labels -she didn't want to be in a committed relationship with you - it's not that she eschewed "labels" - when you tell someone you want to be exclusive that is not just a label -that is a substantive commitment.  Which she did not want with you.  Joined at the hip just means that for the couple of months you dated in person she wanted to spend time with you.  But not be committed to you.  Two different things.  Somehow you took it on yourself to analyze her past even though you only dated her a couple of months and you are not her therapist/was just hearing one side of the story, anyway.  

She wasn't ready to have a serious talk because she wasn't interested in committing to you.  People who are interested in committing to you will want you to know ASAP how they feel lest someone else snaps you up.  She remained single the whole time you were dating her -you two were not married, engaged or even exclusive -so of course she wasn't going to tell you whether she wanted to be "single"  - she was single.

Sure people can have unhealthy patterns - and if they want they see a therapist about it.  You acted in an unhealthy way too -lying to yourself about her not wanting to "label" when what really upset you was her not wanting to commit to you, telling yourself that she was with you to "get over her past" -again that's a huge assumption -how about instead the simple truth most likely -she went on dates with you and liked having sex with you when it was convenient for her with the assuredness that she could keep all options open other than perhaps agreeing to monogamy.  It wasn't that she wanted an "open" relationship -she simply wanted to date you and be able to date others -simple as that.

I think if you accept that she wasn't into you enough to want a commitment you'll move on much faster and make better choices rather than ruminating about her past, analyzing, overthinking and describing this as if it was some sort of LTR.

We agreed to exclusivity, just not boyfriend and girlfriend titles.

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1 hour ago, Batya33 said:

What is this -forgive me - nonsense about "labels" -this is not about labels -she didn't want to be in a committed relationship with you - it's not that she eschewed "labels" - when you tell someone you want to be exclusive that is not just a label -that is a substantive commitment.  Which she did not want with you.  Joined at the hip just means that for the couple of months you dated in person she wanted to spend time with you.  But not be committed to you.  Two different things.  Somehow you took it on yourself to analyze her past even though you only dated her a couple of months and you are not her therapist/was just hearing one side of the story, anyway.  

She wasn't ready to have a serious talk because she wasn't interested in committing to you.  People who are interested in committing to you will want you to know ASAP how they feel lest someone else snaps you up.  She remained single the whole time you were dating her -you two were not married, engaged or even exclusive -so of course she wasn't going to tell you whether she wanted to be "single"  - she was single.

Sure people can have unhealthy patterns - and if they want they see a therapist about it.  You acted in an unhealthy way too -lying to yourself about her not wanting to "label" when what really upset you was her not wanting to commit to you, telling yourself that she was with you to "get over her past" -again that's a huge assumption -how about instead the simple truth most likely -she went on dates with you and liked having sex with you when it was convenient for her with the assuredness that she could keep all options open other than perhaps agreeing to monogamy.  It wasn't that she wanted an "open" relationship -she simply wanted to date you and be able to date others -simple as that.

I think if you accept that she wasn't into you enough to want a commitment you'll move on much faster and make better choices rather than ruminating about her past, analyzing, overthinking and describing this as if it was some sort of LTR.

Literally had to delete my response as its the exact same thing as batya. 

'when you tell someone you want to be exclusive that is not just a label -that is a substantive commitment. ' this is so strong with your situation. People can love you and show love and affection but still not be committed to you. 

'She wasn't ready to have a serious talk because she wasn't interested in committing to you.  People who are interested in committing to you will want you to know ASAP' this is facts - most people have so much baggage and past traumas but that will never get in the way of something they want for their future.

You must accept it didn't work out, s*** happens this is a learning experience and open yourself up to meet amazing women out there. Do not focus on this 'being the only female you got on with' because it sounded like you didn't have a spark with her you just gave her a chance, which you should do moving forward but just watch out for red flags. 

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24 minutes ago, ironi said:

Literally had to delete my response as its the exact same thing as batya. 

'when you tell someone you want to be exclusive that is not just a label -that is a substantive commitment. ' this is so strong with your situation. People can love you and show love and affection but still not be committed to you. 

'She wasn't ready to have a serious talk because she wasn't interested in committing to you.  People who are interested in committing to you will want you to know ASAP' this is facts - most people have so much baggage and past traumas but that will never get in the way of something they want for their future.

You must accept it didn't work out, s*** happens this is a learning experience and open yourself up to meet amazing women out there. Do not focus on this 'being the only female you got on with' because it sounded like you didn't have a spark with her you just gave her a chance, which you should do moving forward but just watch out for red flags. 

We did agree to be exclusive. 

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1 hour ago, onwardswego said:

We did agree to be exclusive. 

I thought you wrote sexually monogamous but not exclusive and since you wrote she wasn't ready to have a serious talk you obviously didn't see girlfriend as just a label.  Just as foolish as those who refer to a marriage license as "just a piece of paper" - it is to those who do a green  card marriage I suppose -otherwise nothing could be further from the truth.  Why would you want to be with someone who saw "girlfriend" as "just a label"??  From her actions of course she didn't want the "title" -because that would cramp her style/potentially close off options if for example you referred to her that way on social media or in public.  

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3 hours ago, onwardswego said:

Also, Batya33, our relationship lasted 9 months. We would see each other most weekends and spend the weekend with each other. Just some more context.

You said you went weeks without seeing her, that she was wishy washy about seeing you. and a big gap where she was not in your area.  And you wrote several times above you were not in a committed relationship -it was a dating relationship.

I think the no titles worked well for you too -you seem to love the thrill of the chase, having to win her over, analyze her in the hopes of winning her over - but my sense is while you enjoyed the deeper convos your most intense focus was on how to figure her out with the goal of getting her to respond to you.  Constant chasing.  It's a safe way to date someone because you never have to ask yourself if you truly want to be with this person -because without the commitment and with all the hot and cold back and forth you're too busy chasing to have to deal with reality.

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'She never told me that she enjoyed having sex and dating around from the get go. She hinted that she did not want an open relationship with me. This was the most she could communicate her needs in terms of labelling the relationship.'

I'm sorry but this sounds like 'I don't want you to sleep with anyone else incase I catch something' nothing more or nothing less. 

I really hope you find the girl worth your time. 

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I was in a long relationship (4 years) with someone who was elusive. I decided I just HAD to get that guy to love me.

Guess what? He didn't.

We behaved as a couple, we traveled together, I met his entire family, we even lived together for a few months. And he never did love me.

I was the one at fault because even though it was glaringly clear he didn't love me I kept trying to get him to. I was the one who was "broken" because I didn't walk away when it was obvious I needed to.

I get it's comforting to tell yourself she loves you. But her behaviors say otherwise. I'm sure she likes you. No doubt. I'm sure she enjoyed spending time with you. But that's not love.

I would ask yourself why her behavior inspired love in you, even when she clearly didn't feel the same and even when she was saying things like she hoped she didn't get you confused with another man who had spent the night with her and when she repeatedly no showed or was hours late. Someone in love doesn't do those things. I would ask yourself why you felt you just had to get her to love you. That is the key.

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3 hours ago, SooSad33 said:

- Wow, a lot happened in this 😞 

Sadly though, neither of you were that compatible.  Yes, obviously she was kinda lost. She's got a rough track record- and this set you off early on, didn't it?

I doubt you would have been able to 'work it out'... or be able to 'fight' for this relationship - was just too unstable ( as you kept breaking it off).

- First off. you need to stop seeing this as you are to blame.  It takes two.  You could tell early on she was not right - but you kept going with it.  You kept allowing her back to try again.

You see now, the red flags- but because you 'had feelings', you went there time & time again.

- When someone breaks it off, is for reasons.  Should you agree to try again, that which caused the BU, were they fixed.. better?

- She told you she was insecure, but that has nothing to do with you.  That is on her.  You could not 'fix' or change that....

- Of course, breaking things off can hurt, but she also hurt you.... (see, incompatible)- really no future with her.

Yes, chalk this up as a learning experience - is often how it goes.

I feel you really did not know her well enough.  You were involved less than a year -- I feel she does have some really deep issue's- of which you could not handle- nor will the next guy. ( until SHE can get herself together & deal with her inner demons) -- she really should be on her own a good while to deal with this, as it will carry on and on.

Anyways, it is done and you need to step back and realize how rough it all was.  As I said, and experience.

Now, you can work on accepting & healing from it all... TC of you now... and in time, you will feel okay again & move on  🙂 .

Thank you. This is the kind of response that I needed. Very supportive and understanding, and not putting worsts i. To my mouth and making presumptions about me. You understand what I wrote and can see it like me.

 

Yes, there was fundamentally no hope for us. I have definitely accepted this. It is just easy to look back at the good memories that still exist. But it is also easy to look back at the negative ones. I just want to forget everything. 

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3 minutes ago, boltnrun said:

I was in a long relationship (4 years) with someone who was elusive. I decided I just HAD to get that guy to love me.

Guess what? He didn't.

We behaved as a couple, we traveled together, I met his entire family, we even lived together for a few months. And he never did love me.

I was the one at fault because even though it was glaringly clear he didn't love me I kept trying to get him to. I was the one who was "broken" because I didn't walk away when it was obvious I needed to.

I get it's comforting to tell yourself she loves you. But her behaviors say otherwise. I'm sure she likes you. No doubt. I'm sure she enjoyed spending time with you. But that's not love.

I would ask yourself why her behavior inspired love in you, even when she clearly didn't feel the same and even when she was saying things like she hoped she didn't get you confused with another man who had spent the night with her and when she repeatedly no showed or was hours late. Someone in love doesn't do those things. I would ask yourself why you felt you just had to get her to love you. That is the key.

Did your ex boyfriend tell you they loved you? Did you ever feel that they loved you when you were intimate? Could you see it in their eyes? I’m just curious, as I’d like to know how you’re convinced the didn’t.

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1 minute ago, onwardswego said:

Thank you. This is the kind of response that I needed. Very supportive and understanding, and not putting worsts i. To my mouth and making presumptions about me. You understand what I wrote and can see it like me.

 

Yes, there was fundamentally no hope for us. I have definitely accepted this. It is just easy to look back at the good memories that still exist. But it is also easy to look back at the negative ones. I just want to forget everything. 

I made no presumptions.  You made many presumptions and assumptions about her though. I love what Boltnrun wrote - if by supportive you mean agreeing with you that the reason she didn't want to be committed to you was because she was broken -that's an assumption I wouldn't make and that is unhealthy for you to make despite the short term validation.   I don't think you can forget everything.  You can choose to let the memories exist and choose to react by simply noticing they exist but not by doing anything or stopping the doing of anything in response.  It gets easier..

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