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Am I too hopeful or is there a future for me and her?


dumbapparently
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I (21M) met her (20F) through Bumble probably sometime in October and after a handful of dates and somewhere in the ballpark of 20 cumulative hours spent together, I had felt like I had gotten to know her really well and we seemed to have really good chemistry. We had spent a lot of time talking about ourselves, asking about each other, learning about each other's ambitions, hobbies, and lives.

The day before Thanksgiving was our third date and the date had been going really well. She had moved out of her parents house about 3 or 4 weeks prior which caused a lot of strain between her and her family, so I knew she would have been spending thanksgiving alone. I thought it'd be nice to at least offer her an invite to spend Thanksgiving with me and my mother. Quite surprisingly, she said yes, which was entirely unexpected, but I was thrilled.

Later that same evening, I brought up the idea of a relationship, not asking her out, but just gauging her feelings on it, and we discussed it in some detail. She seemed interested, as was I, but she also made it clear that I should try asking the next day. So, before Thanksgiving, I took her to a public garden/park and asked her out under a nice gazebo, to which she said yes. We went on to have a lovely Thanksgiving (my mother is a lovely person who is very welcoming, fortunately) and she stayed the night at my place.

Things went really well for awhile, but she started to become more distant (hard to received much or any responses to texts each day) and some minor issues began to arise that I had thought were discussable and solvable. The main issues were that 1. she was very independent to the point that she wouldn't want any help with anything and that 2. physical touch was somewhat of an issue for her.

To give better detail into her independence, if she were sad or upset about something that was not related to me, she wouldn't tell me about it because "she can get through it herself." Obviously, this isn't an enormous issue, but it would be hard for me when she was going through something and I couldn't do anything for her. There were times where I would try to talk to her about something she was going through and/or try to help her through it, but she wouldn't want to and it would just annoy/frustrate her. I felt this was a solvable issue because I would just have to get used to it and let her figure her own stuff out, and then if there was something she wanted help with, she could come to me. Obviously, most of the issue was my fault, but I had thought I was getting better at letting her deal with her own problems and not prying into issues she felt she didn't need help with.

While I love physical touch with things like hugging, holding hands, cuddling, etc., she became more and more distant physically. I would always like to hold hands/rest my hand on her knee while I drove and she was in the passenger seat and show physical affection while we were with each other in general. This is something we talked quite a bit about, and when we initially talked about it she had said that she didn't really get anything from it, but that it didn't bother her. There were times where I would be holding her hand, and she would say she didn't want to be touched at the moment, and every single time I would respect that and let her be. A few weeks before our second date, there was a traumatic incident that happened to her that I don't want to go into to much detail about. She said that this incident may have made her feel less happy about physical touch. While physical touch is really high up in my love languages, I would still put quality time over it, so I was just happy to be with her even without touching, even though I really do like holding hands/etc.

Because both of these issues didn't seem like big issues with me and I was learning to stop asking about things she was going through and giving her physical space when needed, I had thought things were going well. At some point I asked if she wanted to also spend Christmas together and she said yes.

Finals week started coming up and the week and a half before finals, she was really busy, so she didn't really respond much to texts and didn't really have much of any availability to hang out. We hung out one day after her work for a few hours with her sisters and it was a really nice time. She mentioned that she would probably be pretty MIA during finals week because of work/studying/finals.

Well, Thursday, 12/16, she said she didn't want to come to Christmas with me anymore and just wanted to be alone. I asked why and she said she just decided. I asked if we could at least spend the latter half of the day together since it was our 1 month anniversary and she said just wants to be by herself and I want to drop by to pick up the gift I got me, I can. I asked if I did something wrong, and she sad that she was sad and didn't want me to pry.

She then told me she was breaking up with me. I asked why and she said that I was great, but we were too different, and that I value certain things more than she does, which irks her. She said I deserve so much better than what she is giving me and she doesn't think she is capable of giving while receiving. She later said that she doesn't think it's an us issue, that she was pretty sure it's just her, and that she can't seem to be able to do this.

I said that if she felt it was a her issue, then I wasn't ready to give up and that I really liked who she is. she responded "I don't know.." I tried to reassure her some more, to my surprise she called me while she was at work and we talked some more for a few hours.

I made it clear that if she wanted to break up because she didn't love me anymore, didn't want to spend time with me or talk with me anymore, or just didn't want to be in a relationship anymore, then I would respect that. But every time I had talked to her about her reasons for breaking up, she said that it was because she felt the relationship was unhealthy for me.

I specifically asked how much of a factor her not wanting to be with me was in her decision to break up and she said none. I also specifically told her that I would be heartbroken, but okay because of the break up and specifically told her that I would still be okay if she didn't talk to me at all. I said this because I specifically didn't want her to keep talking to me purely because she would worry about me if she didn't talk to me. She said that if she didn't want to talk to me, she just wouldn't talk to me.

She has always been incredibly straightforward, rather blunt, and described herself as "not a nurturing person," so I felt at this point that she really meant it when she was only breaking up with me because she didn't want me to be unhappy or be in an unhealthy relationship. However, at the same time, I also specifically asked if breaking up was her final decision and she said yes. She had mentioned that she didn't think she could do any relationship right now (possibly because of recent trauma?) and when I asked if she was planning on getting back on Bumble, she said no. I'm certain this is not something she would lie to me about, it's been very clear from every conversation that we've ever had that she would rather be honest and hurtful, than lie to protect my feelings.

I talked to her about the future and mentioned waiting for her (because I really do love her), and while she suggested that I don't wait for her because it would be very painful, I also asked what she would really think about me waiting for her without consideration of my feelings and she said "who wouldn't want that," but that I still shouldn't do it.

I really don't know what to do because I really love her and it feels like she still loves me, but that she just cannot do a relationship right now whether because of recent trauma or otherwise. My heart really wants to help her through her trauma, but as I've mentioned in the post, she doesn't want any help with anything, including this, and I don't really know how I'd help anyways.

This situation is something I cannot personally understand and my heart is screaming at me to wait for her and try to save the relationship, but my brain is confused and isn't sure what she's going through, what she wants, or if waiting will really even do anything in the first place. Part of me says to just move on, but the other part sees somebody that I truly love and is going through the hardest part of their life and wants to just support them, even if all I can do to support them is to stay in contact with them and wait for them.

I asked her if I could take to her Olive Garden tomorrow (12/19) (one of her favorite restaurants because she loves chicken alfredo) and she agreed after thinking about it for a day. She did, however, say that if she wants to go home, I need to take her home and that she is only mentioning this because she doesn't want me to pry about her breaking up with me. [Just in case anyone thinks that she wants free food, I should mention that, because of her insistence to, she has honestly spent more money on dates than I have, despite my offers to pay. Even if she did just want to come for food, at this point, I wouldn't even mind because she had already spent more than me anyways].

Because I truly care about her, I plan on honoring her wishes and not bringing up the break up. I want our dinner tomorrow to be a fun time for her and don't want it to be spoiled because of how I feel.

I just want to ask you all: What do I do? I know this question is broad, but I really love her and things just don't feel completely over yet. I tend to grasp at any sign of hope and hold on to it, so maybe I'm too optimistic though. I just want more people's perspectives on all this and I hope we (me and this subreddit) can discuss things so that I can make the best decision and everyone can be happy. I look forward to everyone's replies and I will try to respond to any questions that any of you have and discuss anything you each bring up. Thank you so much for reading this absolute essay of a post.

TLDR; Fell in love, got into a relationship, got broken up with a few weeks later. She feels like it's a her problem and that the relationship is unhealthy for me. I disagree and think that things can be resolved so that everyone is happy, although it's not up to me whether she wants to break up or not. She doesn't think she can do a relationship with anyone right now, so I mentioned waiting for her, and while she heavily implied that she would like, she also clearly suggested that I don't. I really love her and I'm not sure what the best decision I can make is. (Sorry the TLDR; is also so long!)

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I'm sorry but you were way more into her than she was into you.

You two are both so young and just getting started with your lives and learning about relationships.

You did not know each other well enough for anything like true 'love' to develop. Was more a fascination for you and in ways, I think you did over do it, by begging her to stay, pretty much and by acting out like this is a turn off.

If someone doesn't feel it, then that's it.  We cannot make someone want to stay or love us.

So, you now back off and respect her decision.  No more contact ( expected) and leave her be.  ( If you feel you can't handle this 'being friends', then is best you tell her you can't do this. Is best sometimes with an ex- we can't always agree to 'just be friends'... especially if still emotionally involved. Plus you can't move on properly with them still present, it hold you back).

 

Anyways, whatever she's got going on (mental issue's etc), is up to her to deal with.  You cannot 'fix' her.

But, all in all. She is not interested in a relationship with you.  She has spoken up & been honest, now you have to work on accepting & moving on.

Do not 'wait for her'.  if it's not there, it's not there.

Plus, has only been a couple short months.  Nothing really advanced between you two.

Is best to just leave it be now.  And leave her be.

 

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I'm sorry, OP. 

You sound like a lovely guy, but she is not into you the same way you're into her. She is right that you two are too different to make this work. You keep trying to get closer (understandably), and she keeps moving further away from you. This is just not a match.

It would be best to stop trying to convince her that it is, because it's clear that just doesn't feel that way. Leave her be and don't take her for dinner. It's done and it's going to be too awkward when she has to keep saying "no" to you in so many different ways. 

It's disappointing but there is no future here, man. 

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Look, some people are like that. Meaning self-sufficient. In the grand order of things, she doesnt need you to fix her problems. She doesnt need anyone. People like that are very difficult partners. Precisely because they relly too much on themselves even about difficult things. Having a partner there is just another burden to them. And as such they are very difficult to connect. And very difficult for dating. 

And I am sorry, but she is right. You are different. She doesnt seem like a very warm person. You do. You can see that in your differences about physical touch. And the way you handle issues. Good partner will at least let you there. Talk about their problems, and open up. She didnt do any of that because, again, self-sufficient. 

What to do? Move on. I know its difficult because you felt something there, but in a situation where she broke up there is nothing to do there. I know you are clinging that she will somehow take you back, but that wont happen. So you need to move on. Start by having no contact with her. I would even cancel that Olive Garden thing. It wont bring you any good seeing her. I know that you maybe dont see it that way now. But trust me, with a few months of no contact you will just look at this situation and laugh. There is somebody way better out there for you. Focus on that.

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The whole premise of this fixing her is perceiving that she’s broken and needs fixing. When someone tells you they need some space, respect that. It doesn’t mean going into overdrive searching for ways to “talk” or solve an issue that has nothing to do with you.

From the sounds of it she has prior issues and “trauma” she was dealing with and in no shape to be in a relationship to start but you went with it anyway despite those red flags.

Since you’ve asked her to the restaurant, enjoy your dinner together but you’ll have to respect that this is over. Please don’t agree to play these games with someone who’s not altogether ready for a relationship.

 

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