A few months back, i met a man 4 years older than me through online dating. A whirlwind romance ensued with the onslaught of expensive dinners, gifts and arguing. Throughout this initial flush I kept burying my gut feeling that something was 'off' and that I ought to have been more excited than I was. I brushed off these doubts with a shrug, reminding myself of how lucky I was to have met someone who was so attentive and who clearly wanted to be with me and introduce me to his life. I thought I was scared of commitment and so did he! During this time I did my best to communicate honestly that I wanted to see how things would go and make a real effort to fit in to the sequence. I reminded myself of how much we made one another laugh but I was silently starting to feel a bit hemmed in when he stayed over 4 times a week. This was an early relationship and we'd hit the commitment stage far sooner than I had done with anyone else.
Arguments arose, frequently, over differences in opinion. I consider myself to be laid back but frequently felt as though I couldn't win. These arguments often involved my friends' actions and it would sum up that I was ungrateful, didn't show affection enough, was cold etc etc. These arguments served to underscore my doubts about how 'right' this relationship was, but I would feel guilty and wonder if I was being neglectful and self-sabotaging it and hurting him in the process. He'd always apologise whilst I would try to maintain that I didn't need big demonstrative gifts and expensive things to make me tick.
Finally, 6 months in we're due to go away to my parents' house for the weekend. It's 4 hours away. We fight on the Wednesday of that week. I view his new flat on Monday when he makes a cutting remark about my housemate 'if your hair was like that, i would have gone off you' and I descend into wounded silence. Whilst he's been so attentive in other ways (picking me up from my GP, buying items for my house which I can assure you I didn't request), I find myself confessing that I'm not happy with my life. Not bouyant. He takes this badly as I make him so happy. I feel wretched.
Things culminate at the weekend when we're away. We barely speak. I wake up in the morning after we've had a rational discussion about the argument we'd had with no fight left in me to improve things. In my heart I've conceded that it doesn't fit, it doesn't work. I burst into tears at the hotel having sat with this horrible knowledge during the journey up. I tell him how much I love him but that the pieces don't fit, and neither of us make the other happy.
We band aid it. Head to my parents' an hour's drive away and it all comes out. He's sad. I'm sad. He asks me what I want and I tell him earnestly, that I wanted, more than anything to be with him, but it doesn't fit. He's more invested, he wants marriage, I want travel. He's 27, I'm 23. The painful thing is, apart from both of our crying, he concedes 'this happens to me a lot in my life'. He feels I've strung him along. He tells me never to contact him because it hurts so much. He insists on driving back.
Over the next couple of days, I feel wretched and the onslaught of messages ensue. I get messages telling me I'm a horrible person, I'm manipulative, I didn't deserve the nice things he did for me, I'm cold, I can go fuck myself etc. Making him drive all the way to my parents' was 'disgusting' if I had these gut feelings. I'm then mentally unstable and should go back on my medication (!) amongst more character-shaming words. I understand that he's hurting so I don't respond to these messages. At this stage I'm numb. He tells me to bin his things making no mention of mine.
A week later he apologises and suggests we talk. Fast forward another week (and several more details) and he tells me he's had a change of heart, he doesn't want to meet up and that I should be happy for 'being a bitch for no reason'. At this stage I am completely drained and block his number. We've had no contact since and I have felt horrendous, crippling guilt ever since. I should mention here that he has binned hundreds of pounds worth of my stuff in the process.
I keep thinking 'maybe he was justified' against the counsel of my friends. The sting to his words is that I led him on which I truly don't believe I did. I've never tried to make something work so much in my life. My parents keep reassuring me that I could not have controlled where this demise took place but I feel awful that I made someone feel so dreadful in a weird place etc etc. I do feel as thought my hand was forced but it doesn't make it easier.
I'm so sad and still so guilty. Can anyone help me move forward?
His name calling and personal put downs of you and your friends is another indicator of a selfish and narrow minded individual.. hence his statement of "this happens to me a lot in my life".
You need to move on and forget about the guilt which he has saddled you with. Your relationship was one of conflict and that's why you argued rather than discussed things.
Our gut feelings are rarely wrong and we need to listen to them especially when it comes to relationships.
It's obvious you tried to make this relationship work, but the effort you put it needs to be with right man..a man who shares your values and life goals and a man who respects himself and therefore you.
Again, you say that something felt 'off' yet you chose to ignore that signal. What felt off? The fact that he had opinions about your friends?
And the straw that broke the camels back was because he made a comment about your friend and that is what made you descend into wounded silence to the point where you tell him you are no longer happy in the relationship? Even though he is still very attentitive towards you?
As I mentioned above, have I misunderstood something?
In terms of what felt off, I put it down to a feeling that our goals and values were not aligned. I simply didn't feel as strongly as I thought I ought to have done in that situation.
The comment regarding my friend was the tip of the iceberg and followed on from weeks of arguing. I wouldn't say it was the final straw per se.
I hope that clarifies?
However, again, I will draw upon my earlier reply where I questioned the 'involvment' of your friends'. If, you felt that the relationship was not working out due to the differences you both had regarding your friends then that to me (and only my opinion) were not valid grounds, on your part for breaking away from the relationship. And if that is the case, then this break up could be something you may regret in time to come. But again, that is only my opinion.
You also mentioned that during the 'character shaming words' he told you to go 'back' on the medication. Are you prescribed certain medication that you are supposed to take? I only ask because this may help to clarfy matters further.
I used to take anti-depressants. I don't at the moment.
Trust your gut feelings about this guy. Weeks and weeks of arguing is NOT love or respect for each other.
Go and do your traveling and spread your wings a bit.
I was simply trying to give you an objective opinion to your final point which was "I am so sad and still feel so guilty" My point being, if you left the relationship due to him having strong opinions about your friends then that is something you MAY regret which in response creates guilt However, if it was due to your values and goals not connecting, then that is something you should not feel guilty about.
I asked about the medication because certain medication can impair an individuals way of thinking. Antidepressants can impair the mind and so can the reasons for initially taking antidepressants but that is something only you can answer. You did not feel the need to talk about this aspect therefore I shall not either unless you wish to do so.
I am no expert but when I do put forward my thoughts I do try and gather ALL the information before I put forward my opinion.
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