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Resentment in a relationship


KC1
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Hi. I have been with my girlfriend for over 8 years. I met her when I was 23 and she was of the same age. Over the years, we haven't had the same fire we did when we were younger, but have come to be comfortable with each other. I have taken her for granted and my actions (or lack of) has shown it. The past couple of years, we've been talking about marriage and "the ring". I recently found out that she does not want the ring because she feels that she had to "ask" for it and she feels she shouldn't have to beg for it. I didn't feel that she begged for it or asked for it. In fact, she knows I've been working with a jeweler on getting her one! Well, about 6 weeks ago, she told me that she may have issues, on how she copes or deals with problems. I didn't understand but I told her that I would give her the time necessary to "fix" this. She has been seeing a therapist for about 4-5 sessions now and found that she deals with problems with me as she does with her dad. She mentioned something about how she copes with issues and that she doesn't communicate it effectively. She avoids problems with me and does not bother to tell me what's wrong. Instead, she holds it inside, and never lets me know of the issues, or things that I've done wrong. The fact that we can't even talk about it, really makes me feel helpless.

 

For the past 2 years, she has learned through talking to her therapist, she has been holding resentment towards me. She told me that she wanted me to feel like I was part of her family. I have made efforts to see them weekly with her and even visit when she is not able to. She brings up a time when I was not there for her (when her grandmother took a fall and was sent to the hospital). I was experiencing a migraine at the time and said I would go either later that evening or in the morning. I now know that since then, she has trust issues with me because "i wasn't there for her". After that incident, I have truly made efforts, by visiting her grandmother (even without her), and going to dinners with the family. She acknowledges my efforts, but it doesn't matter it seems.

 

I love this woman and I have sent her an email telling her that I'm willing to work things out. Even seeing a therapist together. But how can a person who holds resentment towards you, would want to work things out? Should I even "stick around" and see if she even wants me back again? She did mention that if roles were switched, she would not stick around, and she would move on. I recently asked her if we were still together or not. And she couldn't answer that. I asked her if she wanted me to still be around, and she replies with this disclaimer, "I can't guarantee you anything." I understand she's focusing on herself, so how much time should I give her? 3months? 6 months? Is time the only thing that can heal? Is there anything I should or should not do?

Thanks for listening

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I feel for you. I've been through a similar problem with a woman I meet two years ago. I gave her some space to solve her issues with the advise to switch therapist. You see, her old therapist was more into supporting and dwelling on her issues that came from unresolved childhood problems with her mother and father. Now her new therapist focused on accepting her parents for what they are and letting go of the resentment she had that was affecting her current male relationships. This has brought us closer as friends, yet we decided she needed some time to find the new woman she wants to be. For now I'm leaving it in God's hands and an open door if she wants a future with me. Maybe this can help.

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I don't like her statement how she wouldn't stay around if you were her - if the roles were switched. I guess it says a lot about her subconscious thinking. If I was in your situation and I heard that line it would be a pretty good reason for me to loose a lot of my entushiasm for solving this problem.

 

Also what she said about seeing a therapist together - is she interested in it? Or not ready, and needs time to concentrate on herself?

 

This is tough decision and I must say I believe there is nothing much you cando - you already offered help and involment, she declined it in a way.

 

And she is not giving you a straight forward answer. This is the most annoying part that puts a lot of why and maybe questions on this situation. You asked for honest and specific answer but she is not capable to give you one at the moment.

 

What to do? Set yourself a time limit how much you can wait on her, and I advise you to tell her that. Like I give you a month to give me a definite answer do you want us to try to solve our problems together. I think you mustn't allow her to drag situation without limits - it is about respect, toward you and your relationship. After that ask her what is her decision (even tough she should be the one calling and saying her decision) and if she still doesn't have an answer or her answer is no, than unfortunatelly it wasn't ment to be. Different stages. And no matter how hard continue living and hoping that around the corner is a better girl for you.

 

Good luck in making your decision. After all you know your situation the best and I am sure you are the only one who can make such an important decision.

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I'm with syrix. Tell her that you will give it [however long you decide] for her to make up her mind and then tell her that after that date, you guarantee HER that you will be moving on with your life, with or without her.. Then stick to your word and do it.

 

It sounds to me that she doesn't particulary have any concerns about losing you as you are always there no matter what she does or says. Change this for you.

 

Start looking for someone else in the meantime. Join a dating site, not to date but to look around to the endless list of available women out there for you, it's a good way to look forward instead of dwelling on the fact that she IS the only woman out there for you. She is not. The sooner you and she realises this, the better.

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She is making this relationship all about her and what she needs from you. I see nothing about anything you need from her. To be honest she seems very self-absorbed. One of these people who act as if they are starring in the movie of their life and everyone else. including you, is a supporting actor.

 

A relationship needs to be in balance and yours is not. It is heavily tilted to what she wants and needs. I doubt that will change. But you may want to give her a chance to prove otherwise so I think you should tell her that either you get couples' counselling now to get these issues sorted out or you will be moving on. And those issues should also address any problems you have with her behaviour.

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Thank you everybody for your input!

 

MoneyGod - I'm not sure what kind of therapist she is seeing, but they have been focusing on her family and identifying issues. Leaving it in God's hands is probably the only thing I can do.

 

syrix - The few times I spoke with her on the phone, and brought up "our relationship", it seems my questions perturbed her. Easily angered and bringing her to frustation. She mentioned that I'm pressuring her for an answer. Not wanting to get her more upset, I apologized for bringing it up. I'm going to have to evaluate how much time she needs. I inquired when "we" could go to therapy or counseling and she said "At this moment and time, I'm still working on myself".

 

Bethany - I, in a way, kind of guaranteed that I will be there for her. Was it wrong of me? At this time while we're apart, I told her I'm not interested in meeting anybody new. Through text messages, she tells me how she is doing and how the cats are doing, and how she has cleaned the place. I do have some of my stuff that I left at her place. Would it be ok to tell her I will pick up my stuff? I'm guessing she will realize that we're 1 step closer to breaking up and losing me?

 

DN - You're right. At this time, I am focusing on her and her needs. Maybe it's because she has done the same for me in the past. I'm just trying to be as understanding as I can, even though I don't understand.

 

 

Here is an email I wrote a couple of weeks ago.

 

Dear J,

 

I Miss you! The time we've been "separated" have made me realize a lot of things. A lot about myself and our relationship. I have taken you for granted and for that, I truly apologize. I'm sorry for the times that I made it difficult for you to talk with me. I'm sorry for not showing you enough of my attention, love and support that you need. I'm sorry

 

I wish I could take back every horrible or painful memory, but I can't. I understand that these things make us all grow, whether we like it or not. I wish I could've done more, or said the right things, or been a bit more patient, or just realized things much earlier, but I can't. What I realize now, (among other things) is how much I love this woman who has been my girlfriend of 8 years. I wish I understood earlier and showed you how much. Allow me to prove it by my actions. There's nobody else I'd love to spend my life with but you.

 

I want you to know, that I want to be there for you, and at the same time, give you the space you need. If there's anything that I'm doing (or anything that I'm not doing), that makes you angry or resent me, please tell me!

 

I don't know if you feel the same about me, but my love for you is true. It's unconditional. I cry myself to sleep knowing that I can't hold you or see you. It's selfish I know, but I must respect the time you need. If and when you are ready to continue our relationship, I would be more than happy to see a counselor or therapist with you. I'm willing to put my 100% undivided attention at working on myself, us, and our future. I Love you.

 

Love Always,

KC1

 

 

And here's her response

 

 

Dear KC1,

 

I know this is very hard for both of us right now. I don't want you to feel

that everything was bad or that I wasn't happy. I would not have been with

you for 8 years if it was. I thank you for your apology and I don't want

you to feel that you need to. I think the relationship at times was hard

for you too. I know you wanted more intimacy, and I am sorry I couldn't

give this to you at times.

 

I did try and communicate with you, but through therapy I realize maybe I

could have tried other means. I think I just wanted you to be happy and I

didn't want to make you upset, so I wouldn't say anything, but that isn't

fair to you.

 

I miss what we had at the beginning of our relationship. I miss the romance

and the time we would put into us. I think we got comfortable and this is

why I would want to talk about "us" to ensure we would try harder. I have

to admit at this point I am really just working on the choices I made and

why. I am trying to figure out what I need and how I can communicate this

effectively.

 

I am also still feeling frustrated and angry, but I don't know why. I

really wanted to feel important to you and that you cared. I wanted you to

be a part of my family and friends and to "want" to do things together. I

know you made efforts and I acknowledge all of this. I know if you had the

opportunity, things would be different.

 

I just want you to take this time for yourself as well. You need to know

what you need and do things to motivate you. I want you to understand that

I may not be the same person I was when we were together. I may have

different needs. You may have different needs. I will let you know how

things are going with my appointments.

 

On a different note, the apartment is still messy. The first half of the living

room is clean. Love you.

 

Take Care,

J

 

 

Thanks for listening!

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I may not be the same person I was when we were together.

 

I think that this is the answer on the question are you together or not...

 

You have to decide what to do - she can't make any decisions right now. To tell you the truth I couldn't tell what her e-mail says about her intentions for your relationship except she needs time for herself.

 

I just want you to take this time to yourself as well.

And this is the line where I must say go with her advice and do so.

 

If I red those e-mails before my first answer my advice would be different. Can I change it now because of new evidence ? O.K. here it goes:

 

I think you should put time and effort into you and only you, to get trough this tough personal time.

 

Also I think you should limit contact with her - gradually, leaving her without your support.

She needs time for herself, let her have what she asked for. She still hasn't experienced life completely without you because of your LC (low contact) so I think you should gradually go NC (no contact).

Tell her that you're going to NC her and set her this time limit for her definite answer (just for your own peace of mind - because I feel that there is no need for time limit, I think that this is a brake up, but with maintaining contact because you two want to hurt less than you would hurt with NC)

 

So to make a short summary of my advice - show must go on.

 

Sorry

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My first impression is why would I wait around for 8 years to see if my boyfriend wanted to marry me.

She is 31. It may be that she expected to be married by this time. 8 years is a long time to wait for your boyfriend to propose.

Why have you waited that long? Did you not want to marry her until recently?

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  • 2 weeks later...

Aschleigh - you're absolutely right. I wish (with much regret) I had proposed or done things differently...even at least a few years ago. I "knew" I wanted to marry her probably 5 years ago. Maybe I was too comfortable with where we were? I'm pretty sure this also gave her more reason to resent me.

syrix - Of course you can change your mind! I figured posting that email would help me. Thanks!

 

About a few days after my first post, I had contacted her to maybe pick up some of my stuff. She text'd me back that I could pick it up later that week. I text'd her back saying that I would rather not see her and prefer to pick it up while she's not there. She replied with, "am i ever going to see you again?". I told her to give me a call.

 

During our phone call, I was afraid she was going to throw it away. I told her that and she laughed saying she still has all our pictures up and nothing has changed. She still said that I'm welcome to pick up my stuff cause some of it I could use right now. I explained that I would rather not see her and that I would pick up my stuff while she was out. She told me that she first was excited to want to see me. I told her it was probably better for us not to see each other or contact, until she felt she was ready to see me. This was hard to say

 

As much as I want to know how she is, and what's she doing, how her life is doing, I have to respect her space. It's been 10 long days of NC but I don't know how I can move on. I don't want or feel like I want to start another relationship, or meet anybody new. I'm heartbroken.

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About getting married - well, it would be nice if you asked her to marry you in these 8 long years. And probably it did affect her decision, but not because you didn't ask, but because she was a person who bottles up everything inside. I mean if you are mature and adoult person (female) you don't have to wait for that ring like you are in a some sort of fairytail. It requires a lot of pre-discussions, planning etc. so ring in not something that just appears - it is a mutual decison. She could said: I want to get married, and I give you several moths to talk about it, agree about it, if you want to.

Also, there is no warranty that this situation you're in today wouldn't be present.

I just want to say that you don't have to think it is your fault only that you two broke up. Some people live without beeing married, have children etc. and nothing stays on their way of beeing happy.

 

It's a good thing you decided to pick up your stuff while she's not at home. Seeing her would be a huge set back for you.

Take it one day at the time, day by day... it gets better.

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Thanks again syrix. I appreciate your comments! I just feel that I could've done more knowing what I know now. I wasn't clear in my post above but I didn't get to pick up my stuff.

 

This evening, I broke my 10 days of NC. My phone was ringing and without any hesistation, I picked it up. I knew it was her but for some reason, I wasn't thinking. At first I thought, "wow she's already calling me?!". She told me she wanted to hear my voice and tell me that she had a good therapy session. I told her that I was happy that she's doing well. We quickly got into a conversation about what we talked about earlier about her not contacting me until she was ready. She said it was stupid of her to call me and she apologized. I did let her know again that I only want the best for her, for her to be happy and do the things she needs to do for herself. She admittingly told me that she has not focused on our relationship. She surrounds herself with work and keeps busy with friends. I didn't really feel like I, or our relationship, was a priority. Not even in the top 10 It's making me think that I should ask what type of therapist she's seeing...

 

What was strange was she told me that she would want me to go out and date other people. Never in our relationship did I tell her that I wanted to date other people. I let her know that I don't need "another" person to make me happy. Do you think that she's trying to push me away? Or have a reason to move on?

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What was strange was she told me that she would want me to go out and date other people.

 

that is a scary omen. i think she's saying that so she won't feel so guilty if she goes out with someone else. i don't know what to say other than what everybody else has said: NC, concentrate on yourself, hope for the best but prepare for the worst.

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I was thinking the same thing nowbetter. Thanks for your insight. The more I think about the situation, I feel that it will somehow ease her guilt if she were to date others. She repeatedly told me earlier that she doesn't even want date or can even have a relationship with anybody. I don't know and I'm pretty confused. I think I will send her an email to tell her what I think.

 

It's been almost 2 months since I've seen her. I think I should really pick up my stuff. I deserve respect and I'm not getting any. Even though I love this woman and it's very hard for me, I have to be strong and move on.

 

Thanks for listening everybody

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Yeah, NC her. You know, she is already over with this relationship. But it is hard to dissappear after 8 years together, so she is doing it in a easier way for both of you (but harder in the long run). I think she knows she doesn't want to get back together but isn't strong enough to admit that to you.

 

 

And no need for sending that e-mail saying what you think. Just move on without even telling her that you are no longer waitng for her to make her decision. by the time she sorts herself out I bet you will have a better life going on, and you will not want to get back together, eventough now it seems like SF

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You know, it would be a great thing if more guys were like you. You are obviously devoted to this woman and love her deeply to try so hard to win her back. You know where you were wrong and seem truly sorry for what you've done. I feel bad for you because it seems like she doesn't even stop and think about what your feeling and going through right now. I don't see what you did that was so wrong to make her want to leave you and not be with you anymore. I think 2 months away is enough time for anyone to figure out what they want in life. I really hate to say it but, if she hasn't come back to you by now, she probably is never going to. You didn't ever do anything to her like cheat on her, or lie to her about something major or anything did you? Did you neglect her by not giving her attention? Did you treat her coldly or push her away at any point? If you didn't do any of those things, I do not see how she can justify what she is doing to you. I understand the whole thing about having issues from the past coming back to haunt you and needing a therapist to deal with that. I've been in that situation myself. I know though, when I stuggled with that, the person I looked to and ran to for love and support was my husband. I needed him near, not away. thereforeeee, I do not understand why she is not coming to you for love and support. Have you ever shut her out when she tried to come to you before? If not, I don't understand. I don't know many guys who would come to an online support forum and ask for help and advice from others. I think that's so wonderful. That says alot about the kind of person you are, and about how much you love her. I agree with the others who suggested no contact with her. However, you cannot let things end without at least having the reasons you so desperately need from her. You need closeure for you to move on without falling apart. She at least owes you that. You deserve that, and don't let her or anyone else try to cheat you out of that. I suggest you call her and ask her to meet you somewhere. Sit down with her and tell her exactly how you feel about all of this, how she's made you feel over the past few months, tell her how much you love her and want to be with her and have a future. Tell her that your doing the best you can to give her what she needs right now but that you need to know where your relationship stands and if there is any chance the two of you will ever be together again. See how she answers you and what she says about that. If she says there is hope, then ask her about her therapy. Don't ask anything too pressuring, just general, casual questions. Ask her how it's going. Ask her what kind of therapist it is. It seems to me like her actions have ALOT to do with this therapist. I'm thinking maybe she's being brain washed by this therapist. This therapist is probably telling her to distance herself from you to decide what she wants to do with her life. Either that, or to move on without you and you will eventually get the hint. I don't know. Therapists can be like that. Especially if your GF was coming in distressed and seeming unhappy with the relationship. You said she had been calling you... For a girl who wants no relationship with you, why would she be calling? That baffles me. What is also puzzling is that she wants you to date other people. That right there is probably because she has been dating other people and she somehow wants it to be ok. I agree with the others on that. If that's the case, it's not ok for her to do that. She owes you the respect to tell you straight out that she wants to see other people. She should not try to put that all on you. One thing that most people don't see usually when they break up or even start having problems is that they are both still the same people they were when they met. They have not changed so drastically that they don't still hold those qualities deep down inside somewhere under all the hurt, pain, and heartache. You and her are also still the same people. It just takes finding that and bringing it out again. That's a hard thing to do when there is no trust. You have to rebuild trust first and become vulnerable again like you were in the beginning. It's a long process but it can be done. It takes talking things out in a calm, rational manner without blame or pointing fingers. It also takes being nice to each other and doing things together like you used to. That means dating again. Not just being together, but dating. Pretending like the relationship is new. Basically just starting over fresh. I'm doing that now with my marriage to a man I've been with for over 9 years and have 3 children with. Things got bad between us over about 2 months time. Things were good before that. I found out he had been lying to me for those 2 months and had been talking to someone secretly on his cell phone during lunches and after work. He swears it's a guy, an old friend from the past he didn't think I would approve of. During the 2 months we had the worst fights of our lives. We also both told each other it was over. The coldness I got from him during that time was awful. I'd try to hug him and he'd push me away. I'd try to kiss him and he'd turn away. He slammed the door in my face and left me in the car in a parking lot alone and crying so hard I couldn't handle it. Things are better now. He did appoligize. I will continue in a later post. goodluck.

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