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Getting back girlfriend of 4 years - Need advice


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Hello all, 

I (29M) was in a relationship with a great girl (28F) for 4 years until she decided to break up with me and I'm so incredibly heartbroken and remorseful and just want her back. 

For some backstory, 2 years ago, we decided to move in together, around the same time the pandemic started. At first, things were going great, typical honeymoon period, achieving that relationship milestone of finally living together. However over time, I started becoming lazy and complacent in putting in the effort. This was pretty much the only recurring issue that our relationship had, and had been brought up several times already.

In retrospect, there were a handful of times when she would ask for quality time and I'd just be on my lazy ass doing my own thing instead. She would ask to do stuff with me, and I'd do things with her (this would go on for about a few weeks) then I'd end up reverting back to old habits and just become a complacent, lazy ass again. And this pattern would repeat. She'd get mad, we have a talk, I make the effort, then back to making zero effort again. I found it difficult to be consistent in giving her what she needed because I was lazy and complacent and I'm lazy and complacent because I suffer from depression.

Now I don't want to shift the responsibility away. I'm perfectly aware that it is 100% my fault and I'm not blaming my depression or anything else. But it's equally heartbreaking and frustrating knowing that I didn't do enough, having realized now that i was neglecting her and I was just ignorantly stuck in my own bubble. I thought she was still happy. I didn't pick up the signs and the red flags. I was just in complete autopilot, shutting myself from everyone including her! It is all my fault, and I honestly tried to change but it just wasn't enough. I don't know how to get out of this vicious cycle.

Around the 2nd week of February, we had a talk and told me that she was feeling distant because she felt neglected and taken for granted and always had to adjust for me and she was totally right, and I didn't even realize until it was too late. God I'm so stupid. She then asked for a month break, but then eventually decided 2 weeks ago, to just remain friends and end the relationship.

She told me that she doesn't see me in the picture with her in the long term anymore because of how empty I made her feel. She said the whole experience tired her out and that she doesn't want to be in a position where she has to adjust and prioritize my (and others') needs over hers. I suggested that we give the relationship a clean slate and start over, but told me that even though she's open to the idea of starting over, it's not something that she will prioritize. If it happens it happens, but no promises and no expectations. She said she still loves me but is now unsure if she's still in love with me. My actions made her doubt her love for me and it was such a slow burn experience for her and it's all my fault.

I've been with a few women here and there, but she is actually my first legit relationship and want her to be my last. I am in love with her but don't know how to effectively communicate my love for her. I don't know how to be a good boyfriend because I've never been one. And I don't know how to mange my depression better. I understand that my depression is a deeply rooted issue. And it's something that I'm now getting professional help with because I know I should focus on bettering myself before I truly commit to a relationship.

Fastforward to now, after everything that's been said, we are still in touch but now she's kinda hot and cold. She said we can be friends and she'll always be here for me, but she hardly replies to my messages. She would randomly message me one day, then be cold the next.

So now I'm just in need of some advice. How can I get her back? Is my situation hopeless and should I move on? How can I handle my depression better? Any advice is greatly appreciated.

 

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Unfortunately, it sounds as though she is well and truly done with the relationship. 

You can only neglect someone for so long before they just lose interest altogether. And she came to you a few times with this, so it's not as though you didn't know. Everyone has their breaking point, though, and she reached hers. 

Continue focusing on your treatment. As for how to better deal with your depression, I would leave that to the professional you have contacted. They can assess what is at the root of this and recommend an appropriate course of treatment. Take the lessons learned here and apply them to your next relationship. 

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5 hours ago, G237 said:

 achieving that relationship milestone of finally living together. 

Sorry this is happening. Nothing was "achieved" in this case but finding a parking spot for untreated depression.

You have good insight and that's a good start. 

Go to a physician for an evaluation of your physical and mental health. Rule out physical causes for the lassitude and inertia.

Talk therapy is an excellent adjunct and support in depression, but depression in itself is a medical problem as well as a symptom of some physical problems.

Retool your life. Quit any bad habits that deepen depression such as drinking, overeating or sitting in front of a screen 24/7.

Join some groups and clubs. Get a side hustle. Volunteer. Take some classes and courses. 

Get involved in sports and fitness. Get in shape. 

Trying not to focus on reconciliation. This is over because of coasting along. And you're aware of that which is good.

Instead focus on better physical and mental health and a lifestyle that supports it.

 

Edited by Wiseman2
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Perhaps, start by treating your mental illness before going back to dating? @Wiseman2 has given you some good pointers.

And next time, don't take your partner for granted. Honestly, I think she was very articulate and communicated several times her concern. You had multiple shots and just didn't care enough. So be honest with yourself on why you also didn't care enough. But note that you have hurt her, and it's best to let her go. You can't "undo" the damage. Hence, it's better for you to Have a clean break up and move on. Be a better man with the next lady when you're ready.

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Continue getting the support and help you need for your depression and also support for the break up. This means getting in touch with therapy or counselling in addition to medical treatment from your doctors for your depression. Be in touch with your closest family and friends and stay connected. 

You’re responding to loss and the panic/withdrawal will subside after a few more weeks. Stop communicating with your ex and mute the texts from her. When you continue on the trajectory believing anything has changed in such a short time span you’re in denial and speaking out of loss and panic. The reality is nothing has changed. You haven’t sorted your mental health and you haven’t recovered from the break up. 

She walked away and she’s entitled to doing that. Chasing her is ineffective and selfish. Please don’t do that. It’s also disrespectful. Keep focusing on your health. Let the panic subside and don’t talk to her anymore.

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I know this will make me sound like a jerk, but are you sure you're lazy?  Sounds like just straight up depression with ADHD mixed in.  I'm not a doctor!!! I see this issue pretty often with loved ones with ADHD and are depressed.  What does your therapist say? I would start there.  Think of when they demo the oxygen mask on the plane.  You need to take care of you first, love yourself first, because you can make a relationship also a priority.  Self-care stat!

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On 3/26/2022 at 8:38 PM, G237 said:

She told me that she doesn't see me in the picture with her in the long term anymore because of how empty I made her feel. She said the whole experience tired her out and that she doesn't want to be in a position where she has to adjust and prioritize my (and others') needs over hers. I suggested that we give the relationship a clean slate and start over, but told me that even though she's open to the idea of starting over, it's not something that she will prioritize. If it happens it happens, but no promises and no expectations.

Nothing will change until YOU work on what's caused this BU.

Do NOT beg for her attention.  If she has chosen to end things, then you have to work on accepting it.  

As for her speaking with you, don't 'expect' much.  She's pulled away now - so no more expectations.  Neither of you 'owe' the other anything anymore.

What you DO need to do is focus on yourself.  Reach out for some prof help.  Go see your doctor and discuss your concerns & mental health issues.  I've been through a lot over my years and anti depressants didn't do me much good- though it helps some. ( I am presently on a mood stablizer).  

So, for a good while do NOT get involved.  You know your issue's and is time to address them now, right?

Sorry for the end of this relationship, but is maybe a wake up call for you to see is time to tend to YOU for a good while.

 

 

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  • 3 months later...

There is no point trying to get her back now, she seems to be over it, and no longer attracted to your current state, which is totally fine because it can be very draining for someone in her position. I don't think you're lazy, it seems like it's more so depression because I'm going through the same mental issue. What you have to do is focus on bettering yourself. Whatever's meant to happen will happen, who knows, maybe when you get better in a few years time, she may no longer be your priority

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