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Here again...break up after 12 years relationship


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Hello, my friends

I'm looking find some different point of view about what have brought me here again: a break-up of a 12 years relationship. I hope you will read it all, if you have the patience.😁 

Our relationship was been like many others, with ups and downs, mainly due to differences in personality traits and problem solving methodologies. Because of this we decided to live each in our own house (but we live in the same building which makes us also neighbours). But it didn't stoped us from spending relatively long periods of time "living together", for ex in vacations or spending time in each others homes without any problems.

Anyways, somehow we always have found ways to solve our differences and carry on with the relationship.

Around two years ago I noticed that she started to treat me bad, verbal abuse...she seemed to be always angry, so much that sometimes, when we were lunching at her parents (usually every weekend) her mother needed to tell her to stop doing that (and I always replied, in a amused way, "Every day, she's going worse!"). I tought there were some issues at work or her daughter (rebelious teen) or menopause so I let it go without complaining. Note that I'm 57 and she's 52 years old.

I noticed this behaviour was becoming worse and worse, so less than one year ago I had to tell her that her abuse was starting to annoy me and it must stop, otherwise I would break up. She agreed to be more careful and stop it. Apparently, everything I say was not "normal" to her, although I have been always the same way. Sometimes, just to play with her, I said outrageous things but even after I tell her that I was just joking, she wouldn't believe me.

She also used to say that my family was not "normal" for whatever reason. To cut a long story short, I noticed a change on how she was viewing me and I started to feel diminished as she was always comparing me with her friends and work colleagues.

Time was passing by and 6 months ago I noticed a 180º change in her as if she stopped to include me in her life. She used to openly tell me what she had done during the day and that suddenly stopped. If I ask her something, many times just to make some conversation, she didn't want to tell me saying that she doesn't have nothing to tell me anything, that I was thinking she was doing "wrong things", etc, etc.

She started to accept invitations from her friends without telling me (not because she had any obligation to tell me but I could have a plan for us together in out short free time). Basically, she would prefer to spend her free time with her friends than with me.

One important thing is that in January 2024 I became unemployed and without possibilities to spend money as I used to. We made several trips abroad and used to go out for the weekends, but because her work is not a well paid one, and I was the one who paid most of it.

Another significant thing is that she had been divorced a few years ago. Still married, she started dating and having sex with a married co-worker. This went on for some years and when we started our relationship she stopped seing that guy because he didn't decided to leave his wife. I confront her with this behaviour (being unfaithful to her husband) and she said that her husband was always working and she started to live her life as if she was single. I noticed that this behavioral pattern was similar to what she was doing with me, with the difference that due to my unemployment I was always there but broke (technically I have good savings for my retirement that I don't want to spend just now, although during the last 6 months she was was always telling me to start spending it before I get too old and ill).

A month ago I made her a comment when I asked her if there was anything wrong. I told her that it seems that she was doing the same that she did with her husband. Her reaction was that I was not enjoying life because I have lots of money and was not using it, that I can't hold a job (because that's the 2nd time I'm unemployed), don't have any friends and stay most of the time at home (I'm not in my hometown like her. Because of that, she knows a lot of people and I don't. The people I know are her family and some co-workers. About spending time at home, I enjoy studying Music Theory which is something difficult to do outside). When she told me I have no friends, I told her that I do have but in my hometown and because spending so much time with her I kind of neglect them. I also told her to present me some of her friends but it trigered a "violent" reaction saying "Those are my friends, not yours".

After noticing so many red flags I decided to put an end to it. After a week long thought, I went to her place and told her that I no longer want to be in a relationship like that. The first thing she told was being unfaithful (because of my confrontation about her past unfaithful behaviour) and then she said that she was not in love with me anymore. She told me that she had already said that a few months ago but I didn't noticed or didn't wanted to ear and block it in my mind.

We had a long talk and reached the conclusion that our relationship seems more like a friendship. She emphasized the fact that we stopped doing sex 3 years ago. This happened because, as I'm not young anymore, I started some medication for my prostate whose side effect is a decrease in libido, and consequently, problems in bed.

When I stopped the medication, which lasted a year, the relationship was in a state where I sometimes didn't open my mouth much for fear that she would have one of those more abusive reactions (which contributed to a decrease in our conversations and intimacy). On the other hand, her gynecologist told her that she was going through menopause and, on several occasions, she told me that she didn't feel like having sex, which misled me. I asked, if sex is so much important, and we've been so much time without it, what have you done about it? At this point I was feeling some inconsistencies and contradictions in her words about sex. She said she had bought some toys. 

If she didn't loved me anymore, I asked her why she didn't end the relationship. She said she felt bad for me because I was always at home, unemployed and without any friends. That made me feel really bad. She also told me that obviously (in her words) she would prefer to spend time with her friends than being with me at home (if it was me, it would feel the same but I would have some consideration and respect for her, I wouldn't simply have gone for my friends swiming pool or having meals at the restaurant without saying nothing like she did multiple times).

After all this, the relationship ended but not without some wierd proposition from her. She proposed to keep things as they were because she doesn't have any intention to seek for another relationship so at least we were together. I didn't accept it because she could not guarantee me that a new relationship would never happen to her. The she said: "I can't guarantee that it would never happen but if it happens, you will be the first one to know." I couldn't believe what she just said. I said that was not good for me because if that happens it will hurt me. I also said that I don't make friends with ex's. That's how I am. Maybe in the future, but for now it won't happen.

This doesn't prevent her from inviting me for coffee several times during the last days. I had to talk to her and ask her to respect my wishes and stop trying to include me in her life (she told me that if things go that route, she will forget me). 

Conclusion: If you had the patience to read through it all, you'll noticed that a series of event led to the relationship to be worn out. If all the minor issues have been adressed in due time, maybe it wouln't have reached this situation.

But there is more.... my supposition of why she wants so much to be friends with me. Apart from the fact that it will eases her guilt, during our relationship she enjoyed a life style that she couldn't afford as I was basically paying many things...luches, dinners, vacations abroad, etc. Also my family, owns two different houses at the beach, with swimming pool at all that comes with it. By staying friends she would have access to all this, as well as my company (which seems to be not good enough, because once all the above were removed from the equation, she prefered to enjoy more her friends' company).

By other hand, I lost confidence in her just because of her attittudes and way of thinking about relationships (keep me on hold until a possible new relationship appears). And I also don't know if she was saying the truth when she said there was no one new in her life (considering what I explained before, it can be true... or not).

So, at this moment, she stoped all contact following my request. We were scheduled to go on vacation in August but I have decided to go alone with my daughter (she is an adult and lives abroad).

Well, that's my story. Thank you for reading it all and hopefully you'll give me some new perspectives on this.

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There's a mistake in my initial post

Can't find the edit button.

Where you read:

After noticing so many red flags I decided to put an end to it. After a week long thought, I went to her place and told her that I no longer want to be in a relationship like that. The first thing she told was being unfaithful (because of my confrontation about her past unfaithful behaviour) and then she said that she was not in love with me anymore. She told me that she had already said that a few months ago but I didn't noticed or didn't wanted to ear and block it in my mind.

Should be:

After noticing so many red flags I decided to put an end to it. After a week long thought, I went to her place and told her that I no longer want to be in a relationship like that. The first thing she told was that she wasn't being unfaithful (because of my confrontation about her past unfaithful behaviour) and then she said that she was not in love with me anymore. She told me that she had already said that a few months ago but I didn't noticed or didn't wanted to ear and block it in my mind.

Sorry about that.

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Made it through. Luckily years of dealing with my family has trained me with a great deal of patience. 😉

Seems like you've done a good deal of analying the situation, so not sure how much new perspective I can provide. You're right, this was a long time coming and all the minor things finally built into something that was inevitable. I think that's how it usually goes. Problems aren't dealt with when they happen, so history repeats. People carry over resentments and hurt feelings so are less tolerant or forgiving in the future. It becomes easier to brush things aside or ignore them to the point where you come to except it as how things work. Then something just snaps and you can't take it anymore. Same thing happened to my parents after 25 years.

On her end, she seems rather judgmental. Criticizing your family, verbally abusing you, telling you what you should be doing. "Normal" is whatever YOU choose it to be. If you enjoy doing the things you do, then it's not her place to say otherwise. And however she is feeling isn't an excuse to put you down. The rational thing to do would have been to talk it over with you long ago. Can't say why she didn't or what lead her to these behaviors, but instead of handling things maturely, she kept doing things to make it worse.

You didn't help though. The egging her on, even as a joke, just served to make her madder. That anger fueled the resentments that were already there and became justification for her words and actions. You held your tongue out of fear of her reactions. If things had reached a point where you were afrain to speak, that should have been an indication of serious trouble. You needed to communicate with each other, and not have it dissolve into argueing or bickering.

If you both agree this is over, then the focus should be on what you each need in order to move on. Normally I would say to stay friends if possible, but it doesn't sound like thats possible here. Her idea of keeping things as they are isn't really a break up. It's staying together out of convenice in a situation that you both agree doesn't work. That's going to prevent you from moving on, growing, and finding something that will make you happier. It doesn't even have to be a relationship you find. But neither of you are happy as is. You need to figure out what will make you happy and pursue it. If her friends make her happy, she should be with them, not you. If you want new friends, make them. If you are happy with your Music Theory, enjoy that. Remove yourself from what's been hurting you and follow what will make you feel better.

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Thank you ShySoul for having the patience to read my story. I put a big effort writing it down so it's great to have someone reading it all.😄 

On 6/15/2024 at 3:12 AM, ShySoul said:

You didn't help though. The egging her on, even as a joke, just served to make her madder. That anger fueled the resentments that were already there and became justification for her words and actions.

Yes, you're right. But I've always done this during our relationship without any issues comming out of it. I failled in understanding how bad we were at this point.

In the meanwhile she went for a week vacation abroad with her friends. In spite of my request to stop contacting me, yesterday she sent me a few photos of her and her friends (female friends).

Because she knows me (and also from our conversations) she's trying to show me that it is a only women trip. That's something she told me to put myself at ease because she concluded from our talk that I was thinking she was travelling with a male friend. She also told me she was worried about me because she was seeing me too anxious about the possibility of another man in her life (a few years ago I suffered a stroke without any major consequences). By sending the pics, it was a kind of a proof that she was telling the truth.

The fact is that during our relationship I have never felt any suspicion regarding that but now that everything changed, I'm not feeling confident at all.

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Sometimes writing everything can be therapy, help put things in perspective or give you new insights. Also feels good to just get it out there and not all cluttered up in your mind. Write as much as you want. Write enough and you could turn it any a story or novel. Then you can make it end anyway you want to. 😉

I turn tense moments into jokes all the time. It's natural to want to ease the tension with humor. And you never want to believe things are really that bad.

If you are broken up and don't see a future, then eventually you will both move on and find someone else. She will find another man. It doesn't have to be now, but you'll have to come to terms with that possibility. And that might even be better for you. When they are with someone else it hurts, but it also forces us to accept it's over and can help us move on ourselves. Take all the time you need to process whatever emotions you feel, but know that ending things mean you are both free to experience new things and new relationships. 

My brother had a stroke a few years ago as well. Really affected him. Hope your doing okay now and there really haven't been any long term consequences.

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That woman doesn't respect you enough. At least not now. And you're probably right in your analysis that she wanted to stay friends to maintain access to all the side-benefits.

 

You deserve better. Well done for having the courage to prioritise yourself. It's eerie how similar your experience is to a friend of mine who broke free after 5 years. Only then, with hindsight, he could see how much of his own life, friends and family he'd deprioritised for her. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Update on this one...

On 6/16/2024 at 8:32 PM, ShySoul said:

My brother had a stroke a few years ago as well. Really affected him. Hope your doing okay now and there really haven't been any long term consequences.

It didn't left me with serious consequences. Thanks for your concern.🙂

Now. going back to my relationship...

After I asked her to stop trying to include me in her life, or better, in the time when she's not with her friends, we had one more talk because she didn't knew I had told my parents that we were over. I never had discussed my relationships with them so they didn't know any details. Apparently, it seems they were convinced that she was the one who finished. Anyway, she told me I had distorted what had happened, etc. Obviously, once again she tried to convince me that everything could stay the same as we have been in the last years.

It seems I was not clear enough because, two or three days later, she called me to a coffee at her house but I didn't gave her much talk and didn't went there.

Today, after a week or not talking to her, she called me again to know what was happening, why I haven't called during the week. This time I was clear enough and told her "Haven't we discussed this before? Haven't I asked you to stop calling me?".

She, again told me everything was the same, nothing have changed, etc, etc and we should be together like that.

Also said something about saving money to travel with her friends, blá,blá,blá. I just replied "You're doing it right. Keep saving money to travel with them.". 

From her voice tone, somewhere between angry and frustrated, it was clear this was not the outcome she was expecting. "If that's what you want, ok, I'll stop calling you!".

What makes me really sad and disappointed is that she's not seeing how selfish and unfair and disrespectful it is to me. How could I accept to keep a relationship with a woman who says that prefer to spend time with her friends because I cannot do any fun activities due to lack of money, someone who says that doesn't feel any passion for me, only a deep fond friendship, someone who says that is not looking for another man in her life but, if she finds one, I will be the first to know.

Come on, she should give me a break. I want someone who is trully commited in a long lasting relationship, not someone who has one, two or three agendas behind her actions. There's nothing worse than living always looking over your shoulder waiting for something bad to happen.

The good thing about this is because it's where I get the strength to avoid being in her life, not to mention the lack of confidence that all this talk of hers causes in me.

 

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Hello, my friends

 

Update on this one...

If you haven't read the long post above, I was the one who decided to break up and go into NC, although she insisted in remain close friends. I've done it for my own sake, to get myself together and try to see her under a new pair of eyes (I explain this to her) but it is getting difficult for me. I'm not talking about breaking NC (that is out of question), but because we are neighbours. We haven't met face to face after I went NC (one week) but I see her going out and find myself in a controling mindset and analysing everything, where is she going, who is she going to meet, etc, etc.

I even created, founded or unfounded but based on clues), thoughts that she had a man in her house last night. It might be true or not but this thought is making me so anxious.

This is a cycle I must break but being neighbours, and being at home full time, unemployed and without much money to go away is not possible at the moment (to meet my friends, who live far away from me). So I have a lot of free time, although I've been trying to dedicate myself to my hobbies, unable to vent with my close friends due to distance (unless by phone but that's not the same thing).

Some nights I can't even sleep properly (or anything at all) due to anxiety. Today I woke up thinking about forgeting money issues, get in my car and drive for two hours just to get out of here.

Basically I'm feeling between a rock and a hard place. If at least I could take a trip somewhere and go mountaineering (one of my passions) I would be able to distance myself from home.

Just needed to vent a little but if any of you have some input, it would be really appreciated.

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2 hours ago, Batya33 said:

Can you move?

No, not really.

My whole life is established here. Even if I could, it would take months.

Lesson learned: never have a relationship with a neighbour.🥹

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Any free (or cheap) public spaces nearby? Parks, libraries, etc? My friend finds every hiking trail in the area and rotates through them when he needs to get away.

I'd say to get out each day and minimize the chance of seeing her. Anywhere you can have a laptop and wifi would be a change of scenary and a break from the constant thoughts of her. Or just enjoy nature. Distract your mind with whatever you can.

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16 hours ago, ShySoul said:

Any free (or cheap) public spaces nearby? Parks, libraries, etc? My friend finds every hiking trail in the area and rotates through them when he needs to get away.

I'd say to get out each day and minimize the chance of seeing her. Anywhere you can have a laptop and wifi would be a change of scenary and a break from the constant thoughts of her. Or just enjoy nature. Distract your mind with whatever you can.

That's what I've been doing but the worst parts are the nights. Everytime I hear the elevator going up or down I feel the urge to "control" and check if it's her. At the same time, I feel embarassed by this behaviour. That's one of the reasons why I need to get over this situation as fast as possible because it's not doing any good to me.

What makes me more optimistic is that in two weeks I'm planning to spend one week away from here. My youngest son is comming for an holiday (he's studying and living abroad), also I will stay at my parents and that will be good for them. I also have been talking by phone with an old time friend with whom I have a close connection. We are planning to meet.

Me and the ex, have planned a 2 weeks vacation by the sea side in August, in a house owned by my parents (so I'm not planning to spend much money). I don't know if she's counting on it but I will go alone and my daughter will join me for a week (she's also working and living abroad). Me and the ex haven't discussed this subject but I suspect that she knows, from her last conversation with my mother, that I'll go by myself. In our last talk, instead of speaking openly, subtly she tried to bring this subject to the conversation by saying that even if she wouldn't go with me, she will plan a vacation with her friends (for someone who was always saying that doesn't had money, it's remarkable that now she seems to be full of it). I didn't answered this "provocation".

Also, in a previous breakup, years ago, I discovered the benefits of NLP. I'll give it a try again as well as some sports (I have planned several heart medical examens as well as a cardiologist appointment to see if everything is "sports ready". I could have started already to do some running but I need to know that I can do it (I'm obcessive regarding sports, when I do it I like to reach my limits).  

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I hear you. Nights are the worse. There's nothing to distract you as you lie there. You hear every sound and your imagination can't help but start up. Only thing you can do is keep busy until you exhaust yourself and fight the impulses to check on things. Also, invest in noise cancelling headphones.

It sounds like you are on the right path and doing everything you can. Getting away will be good for you. Returning to things that have helped previously is smart. The fustrating part is that it takes time. Don't get discouraged or upset that it's not getting better. You'll get there. Stay the course and it will happen sooner then you thin (though not nealy as soon as you would like).

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A new update... this story seems to never end.

Yesterday she called me. I didn't answer. Half an hour later, again. This time I answered, but there's a reason for it. Due to my previous stroke, when I asked her to stop contacting me, I let her keep one copy of my home key, just in case of an emergency. Also, when she calls and I don't answer, our agreement is that if I keep not answering, she comes to my home to see if I'm ok. I had to accept this situation because there's no one else.

This time the conversation was almost a repetion of our previous one. I can't make her see my point of view as she always has to justify what she did and why she did it. Basically, she's insisting in keeping a friendship no matter what, just because it doesn't make sense to her to stop seeing each other.

I tried to explain her again that I never had any objection that she meets her friends. It never happened. What I tried to explain is that, at least as a act of respect and consideration for me, she could tell me a bit more of her life. This was not meant to "control" her but as I think it's the "normal" in a healthy relationship.

I never hide anything from her from my personal life, where I went, what I was planning to do, etc, and many times I invited her to my activities. One thing she said this time, which I think it's a really red flag, she told me sometimes she "sneaked out" of home to meet her friends. In her words, as I was thinking she was at home, there would be no problems because I would never know where she had been. In her view, it was a way for her to do what she wants without making me sad for being alone.

Since I lost my job, she started to pull away from her daily life. I somewhat understand her point of view, which is why would you stop doing your things if your partner can't do it due to lack of money? But if you're with someone in a relationship, your friends and your satisfaction are not supposed to be your priority because you're not alone. Maybe I'm seeing this wrong but I never felt so lonely as since I lost my job. I didn't felt that she was supporting me as I was expecting.

As a consequence I lost that sense of security I previously had with her. The red flag above plus some other episodes reinforced this feeling. Also, because she lost her passion for me it also makes me feel less loved.

She told me to think well about her proposal (keep everything as it is) so I'm expecting another call.

I think I will tell her that I don't feel secure anymore, and for now, she should let me deal with all this situation. It could be a mistake as she seems to want to amend things (although during the convo she returned for brief moments to her "old" ways) but I think it would be better to distance myself from all this and see how it goes in a few months, just because I'm not thinking properly at the moment (too many emotions, lack of security, etc).

If any of you have some insight for me, it would be great.

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