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Struggling with Breakup


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6 minutes ago, boltnrun said:

I don't agree (and never said) that "dumpers are evil". Also don't agree (and never said) that personal growth is simple. And finally, I don't agree (and never said) that her feelings were bad or invalid. Just the way she chose to react to those feelings, from a place of ego and entitlement. She could have simply said "I know it's irrational and I have no right, but I admit it hurts to know you've been with someone else." Instead of saying things that made it sound like you did something wrong and deliberately hurtful.

Right now it's probably hard for you to see her in any kind of negative light. But you don't really need to, do you? You already realize you two are not going to be together and you seem to accept that fact. You're already ten steps ahead in the moving on process.

No i didn't mean that's what you meant. Those are just some quite simplistic views that I sometimes hear people say. Was not directed at you.

 

It's actually not hard for me to see her in a negative light, I just choose not to- it serves no purpose to me. As you say, i don't NEED to do that. Demonizing someone else just to make yourself feel better is just a way to hang on to resentment.  As time has gone on (and of course during the relationship itself), i was fully aware of her shortcomings. I don't idolise my partners, they are complex people- the older you get you realise that having these binary beliefs is just a way to limit yourself. Nobody is perfect, you choose to love someone for all their glory and ugliness. Like I said before, expecting your partner to be perfect is not realistic and is also lacking in self awareness. Empathy really is the key to understanding.

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On 3/8/2022 at 4:21 PM, NLYid88 said:

I genuinely disagree with "healthy relationships are not this difficult".

All relationships have ups and downs, but when you are right for each other, to be honest, it is extremely much easier, healthier and happier!

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3 hours ago, tattoobunnie said:

All relationships have ups and downs, but when you are right for each other, to be honest, it is extremely much easier, healthier and happier!

I agree. Relationships ebb and flow, of course you want the good times to outweigh the difficult times by a massive margin!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hey All, thought I would give an update for anyone who cares.

A few weeks back, out of the blue, she messaged me saying she thought she had come off worse from the break up in terms of finances. When we split, we made a list of all our shared items and furniture and agreed to split it up or settle in cash.

It was frustrating to me, that even after agreeing on “no contact” she felt it was ok to just inject herself in my day to say that she felt annoyed by something. That being said, I told her I would look at the spreadsheet we made and just settle whatever was left. I paid her the difference about $600 just to be done with it. She was right that I owed her, but the way she went about it was incredibly irritating on a day where I was otherwise in a pretty good mood.

I also told her that if she really wanted to speak about fairness, i wasn’t happy with the assumption that she just gets to keep the dog, and that I was willing to take her full time. She said she would think about it.

 

The tone between us is increasingly antagonist and adversarial. I ask for a picture of our dog because i miss her dearly and she says “Just look at an old one”. Nice. 

 

Obviously deciding on the fate of the dog and then going NC is the ONLY outcome here.

 

Personally, I have been keeping busy with work and trying to casually date some new women but I know this is just a distraction and I keep having deep feelings of guilt about what happened (see original post).

 

I’ve had to end it with a number of potential partners (all v short term) because as soon as we get going, I become crippled with guilt ad resentment over my last relationship, and being honest with all of you, I still think about her multiple times a day.

 

I know i didn’t do anything wrong but I can’t help but feel I ruined any chance of reconciliation, or at least, some amicable ambivalence. I get the sense right now that she wants nothing to do with me. 

 

Need a pep talk. I know time heals everything, but its been almost 9 moths since we broke up and I barely feel different now to how I did in the first place.

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It's unfortunate that you two have become adversarial. Hopefully this will mark the end of your interaction for a long time to come.

Have you heard from her since then? I get that it's aggravating that she broke no contact, but what was she supposed to do about the money?

Have you considered not dating for a while? That guilt/resentment cycle may not be helping you. In a way, those feelings may be pulling you into the past. 

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I'm not surprised. She seems to allow her ego to steer her ship quite a bit. So she wouldn't think about how contacting you would affect you.

I too think trying to date isn't a great idea for the next little while. Especially if all you do is think about your ex. Spending time with family and friends is a better idea and one that's healthy and can bring you a lot of joy.

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10 hours ago, NLYid88 said:

. I paid her the difference about $600 just to be done with it. She was right that I owed her.

Unfortunately someone can contact you to collect a debt. It's good you settled it.

Try not to drag out the breakup further by bickering over this that or the other.

If it's all squared away from the division of property, delete and block her and all her people from ALL your social media and messaging apps.

Just put one foot in front of the other. Realize you dodged a bullet. From the moment she started musing about the horrors of "heteronormative" was the time to run. 

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Thanks for your kind words. The longer is goes on, the more I think about these things in the past and how I should have been more proactive at the time. 
 

interestingly enough I did an enneagram personality test (very revealing for anyone who is interested- it’s a scientific method. Not totall bull***), and it did reveal that my personality type is “peacemaker”, I often swallow uncomfortable truths in order to maintain peace. 
 

in the spirit Of personal growth I will not being doing any of the superficial bull*** activities like most people do by cutting their hair or learning the guitar. I will be actively learning about my self and trying to not make similar mistakes in the future. 
 

 

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Posted (edited)
On 3/23/2022 at 5:39 PM, Jibralta said:

It's unfortunate that you two have become adversarial. Hopefully this will mark the end of your interaction for a long time to come.

Have you heard from her since then? I get that it's aggravating that she broke no contact, but what was she supposed to do about the money?

Have you considered not dating for a while? That guilt/resentment cycle may not be helping you. In a way, those feelings may be pulling you into the past. 

I had actually offered many times before to settle the debt but she told me she did not want to get back into it. Then one day she woke up and decided that it was actually important enough to bother me with. 
 

I told her politely that from now on if she wants to discuss her grievances about me or the breakup, she should talk to her therapist and not me. 

Edited by NLYid88
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4 minutes ago, NLYid88 said:

I had actually offered many times before to settle the debt but she told me she did not want to get back into it. Then one day she woke up and decided that it was actually important enough to bother me with. 
 

I told her politely that from now on if she wants to discuss her grievances about me or the breakup, she should talk to her therapist and not me. 

That was a good move.

She wants to inflate her ego by getting you upset.  Her therapist likely won't be willing to play along.  But she can find someone else to lure into her toxic sandbox.

And I know, the relationship itself may not have been toxic but her actions since the breakup have been.  It's been all about her and nothing about you. So, you can be all about taking care of yourself.

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Seems that you're on a very good journey right now, if still in the hard stages. The first year out of a relationship as long as yours, regardless of the particulars, is going to be a year of whiplash. Not sure it can be avoided. 

The digging into yourself sounds great, productive. But equally important, and I say this as someone prone to self-examining myself for every possible existential pipe to unclog? Cut yourself some slack.

I don't know the ins and outs of your time together, but from the snapshot provided here? Your ex feels deeply self-involved, driven far more by ego than heart. My hope for you is that you can come to see that, and see it as something to just distance yourself from rather than internalize as personal faults and shortcomings. 

This past exchange about money, the frankly absurd exchange about the other woman: I get that they sting, but in time, hopefully, they will just tell you that your joy is elsewhere. When you see that, and really feel it in your bones, you'll be able to explore all sorts of new romances without all the guilt. 

 

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Why keep dating other people if it’s not working right now? Do other things and keep busy. Don’t bring people into this. The more you keep running into failures with even casual relationships the more your self-confidence takes a hit, the more likely you weep after your ex and miss old times and the more desperate you become overall. Not good.

It’s also better that she told you to look at an old pet photo instead of prolonging the attachment to each other. 

Regarding the $600 it’s done and you’ve given her the money so let her go. No attempts at friendship. It didn’t work for many reasons. 

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1 hour ago, boltnrun said:

That was a good move.

She wants to inflate her ego by getting you upset.  Her therapist likely won't be willing to play along.  But she can find someone else to lure into her toxic sandbox.

And I know, the relationship itself may not have been toxic but her actions since the breakup have been.  It's been all about her and nothing about you. So, you can be all about taking care of yourself.

Funny enough while we were together she actually told me a number of times when her therapist gave her genuinely bad advice, about how to deal with difficult situations. She would never advise her to look inward, it would always be kind of ***ty “best friend advice”. Compounding a bad situation with a bad reaction. Her therapist actually advised her to break up with me early on in the relationship because she thought I had the vibe of a cheater. (A bizarre prediction that never came true of course)
 

Not sure if she still uses the same person but I’ve always thought it odd that therapists actually try to insert themselves in the lives of others and give advice. Surely that’s not their professional obligation. 
 

on top of that A LOT of people choose a therapist that does not challenge their behaviour, and will just work to justify and compound *** behaviours to make their client feel better. 
 

both of these are bad therapists IMO. 

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21 minutes ago, NLYid88 said:

I’ve always thought it odd that therapists actually try to insert themselves in the lives of others and give advice. Surely that’s not their professional obligation. 
 

on top of that A LOT of people choose a therapist that does not challenge their behaviour, and will just work to justify and compound *** behaviours to make their client feel better. 
 

both of these are bad therapists IMO.

There's an old joke--Question: "What do you call the guy with the lowest passing score on the medical licensing exam?" Answer: "Doctor." The same is true for all professions--there's a quality spectrum. That's why "get therapy" is a terrible thing to say to someone who is struggling with something. Yes, it may be helpful to hire a professional, but there are no guarantees and it shouldn't be a substitute for using your own brain. You should always be questioning 'authority.'

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3 hours ago, Jibralta said:

There's an old joke--Question: "What do you call the guy with the lowest passing score on the medical licensing exam?" Answer: "Doctor." The same is true for all professions--there's a quality spectrum. That's why "get therapy" is a terrible thing to say to someone who is struggling with something. Yes, it may be helpful to hire a professional, but there are no guarantees and it shouldn't be a substitute for using your own brain. You should always be questioning 'authority.'

Absolutely agree. Surely the most valuable kind of therapy is to make someone aware of their patterns of thought, patterns of behaviour and give them tools to be aware and in control of these.

 

You cannot control the external world, that is the unfortunate truth- you can only master your own thoughts and emotions and than can then allow you to be protected and self sufficient when external factors threaten you.

 

Just giving someone advice because its what they want to hear at that time is about as useless to personal development as just giving someone money in the hope it makes them happier.

 

In my exes case, I’m starting to see that I just became the surrogate for her bad decision making, and her inability to manage her emotions. She was intensely jealous, but made zero effort to understand that or deal with it. Instead she just expected me to not any relationships with other women (platonic of course). Of course i refused to do this, it’s not reasonable to expect that. But it did continue to cause friction. I suggested that she work on her jealousy issues and she would argue that my behaviour was the reason for her jealousy (having 20+ year friendships with women for example) The irony of this is that am an INTENSELY loyal person and she knew this, and she was also the one who was unsure if monogamy was for her. These kinds of issues were not really clear to me at the time.

 

I know obsessing over the past is not good for my development but I’m a thinker, and I also have the benefit of being able to deeply aware of my thought processes and re frame them. This is something I am learning to do through self reflection. Doing this really has started to make me feel better and know that I shouldnt have to put up with that toxic behaviour then, or now. 

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18 hours ago, NLYid88 said:

Not sure if she still uses the same person but I’ve always thought it odd that therapists actually try to insert themselves in the lives of others and give advice.

Could be that her therapist was actually doing this, what she said, which would make the therapist almost comically lousy. Could also be that she interpreted the therapist's words as such, which is far more common. Some people want only confirmation of their righteousness, not a challenge to their perspective. 

Look back at the relationship and note how often you said, "Oh, yeah, I'm sorry, you're right, I didn't see it that way..." and compare it to how often you heard her express something like that that. My hunch is that the ratio is far from equal, which is why my hunch is more about how she's using therapy than the quality of her therapist. 

14 hours ago, NLYid88 said:

I also have the benefit of being able to deeply aware of my thought processes and re frame them. This is something I am learning to do through self reflection. Doing this really has started to make me feel better and know that I shouldnt have to put up with that toxic behaviour then, or now. 

Great. In my experience, the path out of a breakup generally goes something like: waves of self-blame, waves of them-blame, waves of epiphanies, sometimes all forming and crashing simultaneously, sometimes shifting from one to the other. Eventually it all settles down to a pretty simple notion: two people who worked for a stretch, for a variety of reasons, until they stopped working. It's in resisting that simplicity that people spin out, turn into emotional forensic scientists, because we generally want a grander story to validate the pain in our hearts.

On that note, I'll repeat myself: slack, slack, slack—keep extending it to yourself. 

Sounds to me like you extended loads to her, and are now habitually used to that: giving her lots, yourself little to none, and using brainpower to fill in the places where that leaves you emotionally strung out. Like discovering smoking is bad for you when you get winded in a stairwell, discovering the corrosive effects of that kind of habit can be an empowering godsend, and a path to calm and good health as you keep stepping forward. 

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On 3/27/2022 at 7:42 AM, bluecastle said:

Great. In my experience, the path out of a breakup generally goes something like: waves of self-blame, waves of them-blame, waves of epiphanies, sometimes all forming and crashing simultaneously, sometimes shifting from one to the other. Eventually it all settles down to a pretty simple notion: two people who worked for a stretch, for a variety of reasons, until they stopped working. It's in resisting that simplicity that people spin out, turn into emotional forensic scientists, because we generally want a grander story to validate the pain in our hearts.

This is such a insighful response and one that really resonates with me.

 

Some people need to feel good about the outcome of a breakup- usually some kind of emotional closure that you rarely really get. Whereas some (myself included), just need some degree of intellectual closure. It needs to make sense, the bad needs to outweigh the good or else it makes no sense to us.

 

The truth is that you rarely get either and you just have to accept and be open to take whatever you can from the entire experience. Bad and good together

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