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His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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My boyfriend and I have been together for a little over 2 years now. Last night he was over at my house, on my computer, and we were emailing someone back and forth and he wanted me to write for him. After he left for the night, I got on my computer to shut everything down and I noticed his email was still open in another tab. I did what I shouldn't have, and what is not me.... I opened it. I don't think my boyfriend would ever cheat on me, but in the past few week I had been getting weird texts from him like a random "I love you too". I'd kinda make light of it and he would say he's just used to me saying "I love you first" or "auto-spell automatically put too". He also doesn't seem to want to spend as much time with me. Him and I have both been cheated on in previous relationships, so these actions just hit me as red flags. I saw the email and did what I would have done to my ex who I knew cheated, and I spied. I didn't find any email from any recent lovers, girlfriends, etc. on his email. It was very lengthy and I skimmed it mostly. Then I got down to before we started dating. Yeah, he has emails that go back to late 2010. That's where I found the 44 nude pictures he still has of his ex girlfriend, showing various body parts, and 3 videos of THEM HAVING COITUS, UP CLOSE, NAMES BEING USED, EVERYTHING. I deleted every single picture and video of her from his email, although I have a few on my computer because they were sent from her phone and didn't have a preview. (Yeah, nasty. Now I'll have to go back and see those and delete them too.) I FEEL ABSOLUTELY HORRIBLE FOR GOING BEHIND HIS BACK, BUT NOW I CAN'T STOP THINKING ABOUT IT, HAVING DREAMS ABOUT IT, AND IMAGINING IF HE'S KEPT THOSE PICTURES ON PURPOSE! I've never kept any pictures like those and I'd let him go through any of my email, facebook, etc, that he wanted. I know I either have to say something and break that trust but find out, or keep quiet and live with it, but I don't know what to do. Do you think he was still looking at them, buried in his email from 5 years ago? Wouldn't that also be the perfect place to hide something? HELP!!!!!!!

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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My guess is that he has looked at them. If you confront him he will say something like " I forgot they were there" "I had no idea they were there", and "No I haven't look at these at all" Something along these lines. You have him between a rock and a hard place, once he realizes the photos and video are gone I doubt it if he would ask you about them. I don't think he would ever admit he continues to looks at them. So keep quiet and live with it. To continue to stress over something that is in the past will effect your relationship in a negative way. If on the other hand you decide to discuss it with himt try to be objective.

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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I was just going to let it go and see what came of it. We both have finals these next two weeks, so I have more important issues to stress about. I got to school and I waited for him like usual. When he pulled up, I felt the tightening in my chest I felt all last night. We started walking in and I was trying so hard to act like nothing had happened, but neither of us can lie to each other or hide when we're upset. I broke down crying because he wouldn't believe me that I was fine, and I asked to go to the car. He nodded and said he thought he knew what was wrong. It ends up I had known the password to his email, when he had told me before I thought he was kidding because it's ridiculous. I apologized for not trusting him and he forgave me. He said he knew it would probably happen eventually and the absolute worse I could do is break up. I asked if he had looked at them since we have been together and he said no. He knew they were there buried somewhere under 10,000+ email but was too lazy to look for them even if he wanted to see them and he hadn't deleted them because he doesn't delete email (which I know is true of all of his email). He told me if he wanted to see them he would have just stayed with her in the first place and had the real thing. It would be easy to lie, but it would have been easier for him to go home and delete them before I even saw them. I know he isn't lying. I still feel pretty bad though.

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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There are a lot of woman who would have done the same thing. Now that you guys have addressed it, and you feet that he's telling you the truth,when he said he hasn't looked at them, which was what you wanted to know.

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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"Do you think he was still looking at them, buried in his email from 5 years ago?" No. Or certainly not with any feelings about it, other than getting to occasionally admire his bedroom techniques from a third-person perspective (boost his ego). "but neither of us can lie to each other " Wanna bet? Speak for yourself. Desperate is as desperate does... including "just being honest".... - "a little over 2 years now" - "ls these next two weeks, so I have more important issues to stress about." ....LOOK-AT-ME, LOOK-AT-MEEEE, NOT YOUR STUDIES, ETC. - MEEEEE!!! PS: MEEEEEEEEEEEE! Bit ham-fisted, to say the least, in his endeavour to treat you mean to make you (re-)keen, eh. His cunning little plan just to get you to sit up and pay better attention JUST ENOUGH not to risk ending up chucked could have right royally backfired, thanks to those clumsy hands of his. What a tw*t. You fell straight into his trap - hook, line and sinker (stinker!). Never mind... it's not too late to back out of it. Or if it is, at least from now on know what he's up to and in future just ignore it/fail to react so that, if he WANTS to rev you back up to where you put him first at all times (i.e. spoiled him with over-attention) then Mr Lazy & (so-called) Clueless will have to achieve that the RIGHT way: [1] With a bit more realism thus understanding (about current outside-life pressures making him have to take a back-seat for a bit) and [2] WITH ACTUAL WORK (- wooing)! Here - see your bf still at "cunning Baldrick plan" stage: http://www.peoplesproblems.org/showtopic/7947/Cheated-During-1st-Month-Of-Dating-Now-1-Year-Later. They almost all do it at some point, you know. PS: " weird texts from him like a random "I love you too". I'd kinda make light of it and he would say he's just used to me saying "I love you first" or "auto-spell automatically put too"." Tell him I said he shouldn't give up his day-job because he's a bleedin' amateur. :-p

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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@SOULMATE: I learned a lesson here, by "just ignoring it/fail to react" helps avoid the trap even when you're not aware a trap been set.

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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Well, it always depends on the situation. If they act-up TOO much or if you let things slide for too long then ignoring isn't an option and you have to instead deal with it 100%. Either Or. Just, whichever you do, do it properly and thoroughly. So if you ignore/rise above, do it to the max; if you deal with it, deal with it to the max. That's the key with anything because wishy-washy/half-a*sed gets correspondingly half-a*sed results. Do also bear in mind that oftentimes they themselves aren't aware they're setting any 'trap'. Whether or not, however, it teaches us a lesson not to go OTT with the non-stop attention whereby it becomes the norm and leaves us no room for tending to ourselves when need be. If so then ones recipient is BOUND to feel something's wrong if, being used to constantly getting 10/10 it suddenly drops to 5 or 6. Cue that knee-jerk, very emotional panic reaction you've just witnessed. Still, look on the bright side: it is flattering, really; he could have NOT GIVEN a sh*t, eh. :-) But it's not exactly team-spirit behaviour, so your 'mission', therefore, if you want this relationship to develop smoothly rather than bumpily, is obviously to get him comfortable with the habit of being brave enough to just TELL you if in future he feels neglected and discombobulated. How you do that is - you start. (10p please: :-))

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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The attention thing is making more and more sense. Just a few days ago he very passive aggressively said something that meant he wanted more attention. I don't know how to get involved further with him and still feel like I'm getting the same out. I'm not saying a relationship is always "oh well if you're only going to do this then so am I" petty crap. It's the long term overall affection. For the first year of our relationship I gave him a 10/10 all the time and never got more than a 5/10. I became so fricken upset I had to be put on depression and anxiety medication. I didn't understand "what was wrong with me" and with my abusive past it made me crumble. I was showing physical signs, like chest pain at it's worse, because we would end up arguing when I tried to ask why he didn't give me more. After 7 months of medication adjustments and counseling I realized it wasn't my unattractiveness and to "protect" myself I needed to put into the relationship what I got out of it. Now 8 months later he's constantly saying how he "misses how clingy" I used to be and he "like it"! Then last night he tells me he wants to get this new puppy he's been talking about for a couple months (that I've gone to the ends of the earth to help him email breeders, schedule visits, find sales on the things it will need, literally everything) BECAUSE HE'S NEVER HAD SOMETHING BE ATTACHED TO HIM. I thought I was going to f**king scream. I started to say that maybe he had just pushed away the things in his life that tried to do that, and he responded that he was tired and needed to sleep. I try to love him and he makes me have psychotic break downs. I try to give him space and he complains he doesn't get enough attention and that nobody has ever tried to get close to him (so he has to go get a dog!) I've never been so close to throwing up my hands and throwing in the towel over something I care about so much. I need to confront him on this, it can't slide like I let 99% of the cr*p he says. How do you confront someone who doesn't think you care after you've done so much to stay with them?

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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you say you gave him 10/10 all the time in the beginning and never got more then a 5/10 : it seems that from the start the give and take was unbalanced - and now you start to get the "evidence" as in him wanting more attention - from you who has an abusive past : so you know how it is to be abused - this is "familiar" territory - hence maybe unconscious automatic responses/reactions that play into this type of relation - and now he wants a dog because he needs to have someone to "need" him full time and that he can own - it is not normal that you have break downs and other "hyper" reactions : you can not put everything on your past - you have a free will to how you want to live and act now - you shouldn't need any medication if it's the situation that gets you to be all anxious and depressed - of course, coming from an abusive past maybe you indeed need to work on your self-esteem, ressources and capacities - and now that it seems you have changed or are changing, he misses the "clingy" you and wants a dog - at this point it seems that whatever you do it isn't enough or not the way he wants it : so give up - stop doing for him and start doing for you - you say you care but does caring entail giving up on oneself ? the root of the problem lies there - you can not help him if he doesn't want to help himself and people change only when they want to (if they can however) : so get back to the highest potential of your very best self and if that means the possibility of you both breaking up - then so be it : then your relation has served the purpose of you getting back into your power - don't confront him if all he has to say is he thinks you don't care : this is obviously someone trying to twist around the situation - hence you having moments of freaking out because YOU know what you have invested and given of yourself - You know what you have to do - if indeed you do care for yourself :)

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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No, I completely agree that my past is not his problem. But when I would seek out the answers as to why he wasn't giving me remotely the same level of affection I would give to him, and that I have had in every other relationship and see in every other relationship, he would twist it around and say the most hurtful things imaginable. For example the incident that finally broke me down enough to seek help. He had shown strong sexual interest then after 4 months there was nothing. I had to plead and beg for any sexual attention so I asked him very causally if there was something I could do. He responded he wasn't that kind of person and just didn't want it. I questioned it because the first 4 months was a different story and he said it had nothing to do with him, if his brother's fiance was single he'd "f*ck" her... I of course broke down. What girl wouldn't after a comment like that? He never aplogized. I wouldn't bring it back up to him because it's so far in the past and would only bring hurt, but he would respond like he normally does if he chooses to respond at all: "that never happened, you're making shit up" or "I don't f*cking remember that, you're just trying to start a fight". I don't want him to get this stupid dog. It's going to cost at least $2000 (yes 2 grand), the upkeep on it is ridiculously hard and expensive, and anywhere he goes he's already stated he will be bringing it with, which means no going out anywhere a dog can't like dinner, movies, etc. I'm transfering colleges next fall. Before I was trying to stay in state even though there were tons on the west coast that would be perfect for my degree. I'm thinking I might just go the 23 hours. Leave him here with his dog to see how much it really fills my spot.

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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"he would twist it around and say the most hurtful things imaginable" "he had shown strong sexual interest then after 4 months there was nothing" "he never apologized" "he chooses to respond at all: "that never happened, you're making shit up" or "I don't f*cking remember that, you're just trying to start a fight" those are RED FLAGS for a narcissistic type of person : enough for you to want to get out and leave hime with his dog really : you go and "do you" - I thinks it's time - you say you're transfering colleges next fall - that there are tons on the west coast that would be perfect for my degree : please do go there if you think it's best for you and why not go now ? must you wait until fall ? if you do - nothing obliges you to continue with him : you can break of and go no contact - get back to living your life : choose what's best for you - wish you luck :)

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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"No, I completely agree that my past is not his problem. But when I would seek out the answers as to why he wasn't giving me remotely the same level of affection I would give to him, and that I have had in every other relationship and see in every other relationship, he would twist it around and say the most hurtful things imaginable. For example the incident that finally broke me down enough to seek help." Who CARES what noises come out of a person's mouth? It doesn't alter the fact that they've not been pulling their share of the weight and even when alerted to that fact, STILL refuse. Listen, if you complained to a restaurant owner-waiter that there was a fly in your soup but, after having taken the bowl away he returned it WITH THE SAME OR BRAND-NEW DEAD FLY IN IT - and this happened on not one but TWO occasions on-the-trot - what would you do? I know you DO care what comes out of his mouth, even during upsetting discussions or callings to account that he'd rather avoid "somehow" (i.e. show-stopping missiles), but my point is, even if he'd responded with something more reminiscent of Pepe Le Pew ("o, mah darrlingg", etc.) - that's not TAKING ACTION, is it. Words is words, actions is actions; your complaint at that point was about lack of ACTIONS. Actions are the soil...And you can't grow anything, let alone see any blooming, if the soil lacks nutrients. So, no, expecting an exchange is NOT "petty", FYI. Relationships are ALL tit-for-tat. Even just CUDDLING is (was but still is) tit-for-tat: you've *literally* got their back, ready for any predators, whilst they've *literally* got yours (think about it)! Doesn't matter who does what, specifically. It's just about ones internal scoreboard comparing WEIGHTS of acts and gestures and either purring and leaving Conscious You be, or sounding the alarm for Conscious You to wade in.... which you did. That gumph about his sister-in-law-to-be is a huge Scooby clue, if you ask me. Think about it: that you could so easily have let slip to his brother (which - who KNOWS what might have resulted!)...is what tells me he wasn't thinking at all straight when he said it (understatement!), meaning, the discussion had already become too upsetting for Mr Panicky from Panicville. So much so that he 'puked'! True? However, that still condemns him as a child with all the self-control and foresight to match. Or certainly when under fire of what could quickly escalate to a decidedly threatening state ("in that case, you're fired!";). But I hear resentment talking in there. On both sides. Whether his is justified, however, is another question altogether (and one only you could hand-on-heart answer). I think you've got FOUR options: [1] just dump him - not deliberately in order TO make him start to work hard at re-chasing and -wooing - i.e. have to start from scratch (and better) - but genuinely, for-real, whilst being aware and prepared (and hopeful) that he quite possibly might; [2] WARN him you're genuinely about to exit the restaurant altogether (and be prepared to go through with it if need be, as well as completely ignore any hot-air gumph and smoke-screen attempts in response) and see if his being able to sense you/the warning is genuine (he will) is enough to make him up his ante; [3] [baby-step] suggest you and he could (ref barely any sexual activity) glaringly, as in, INDISPUTABLY-obviously benefit from seeing a couples counsellor so that you can both end up equally as happy rather than down the pan, anyway, just via the longer route; [4] [long-haul but effort-free] cease giving anything that, compared to his own efforts (or, more truthfully, WEIGHT of own efforts), counts as above and beyond the call of duty and then - from your largely sat-back, having fun with everything and everyone else position - see whether or not he starts pushing your pleasure buttons to get you dispensing again. If the GENUINE loss or even just risk of loss of you isn't enough to make him start playing ball like a ripe 'n ready grown-up, when this situation was however much of his making (leaving aside what might have been your share), then you'll have lost nothing but deadwood and gained a fast-track to wherever you *should* be by now. Plan? Any questions?

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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You've been blunt but verry accurate in all of your responses, and it's helping a lot. I do have a few questions. I don't plan on leaving yet. Before the email thing, which was me being nosey, everything had been getting better and I really thought things were working themselves out. 1. Dumping him- going to save this as a last resort. I have put in a lot of time and effort. I feel like the bulk of this is going to be him learning he needs to be responsible for his part of the relationship. His only other serious girlfriend didn't bother putting in the effort for this, she was known to run around and get attention elsewhere, and that's how she ended up pregnant, and not with Kyle's kid. 2. Warning him- was going to be my go to, but being as emotionally confused as he is, I think he would take it as a threat like he does every other warning people give him. Like a rebel without a cause, he seems scared of restriction or being told what to do. 3. Baby steps- is indisputably the hardest choice you suggest. Again, he hates feeling controlled or restricted, let alone by others not in our relationship. He's made it clear he will never go to couples counseling. 4. Long haul and effort free- nothing is effort free with this one, but I understand what you're saying. If I did this, I wouldn't even be getting the "average". Like I mentioned before, I have to ask and often end up practically begging for the most simple of things any other significant other wouldn't even need to be asked to. I'm not going to turn myself into a saint, but this week I went above and beyond for him without being asked (multiple day out of state funeral, family he's never even met, took my car, 6 hour wake, 6 hour funeral and luncheon) and then I agreed to several additional favors he asked of me that I couldn't really say no to because he had already told the people he'd do the favors. Today he couldn't be bothered to attend my 2 hour family Christmas party until I spent 9 hours begging. He "hoped his "grieving" would get him out of going." (He didn't show any emotion at the funeral, I was more upset at the loss and I'm not even in the family). He finally said fine and that I was "fucking spoiled".... I wish I was exaggerating. He still might just "accidently" not set his alarm and sleep until 4pm like he has before to get out of it. I'll be ready early to leave earlier and go wake him up, do him another favor. I feel like this is going to take baby steps and relearning with a hard warning that I'm not happy and a promise to leave if things can't change. I know he'll just blow it off though. I guess that's my first question. How do I get him to listen to me so I can get started on this and either grow or move on?

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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(Why the change of alias?) "He's made it clear he will never go to couples counseling" NOTED! REVEALINGLY OMINOUS! Needed that, thanks! " He finally said fine and that I was "fucking spoiled".... I wish I was exaggerating." So do I. Well anyway, now I've got all the extra, vital jigsaw pieces....Your so-called boyfriend, the way he treats and speak to you - downright shoddily, like sh*t on his shoe, actually - and NOT just during altercations (as we now see) - is starting to repulse me. "UGH!" He's obviously not as over that whole devastating episode with his ex as you are re yours, and hasn't learned a THING in terms of the part he played and what he did wrong as sent her off into another man's arm's in the first place. Most women don't tend to cheat for leverage purposes, unlike men; they lilypad-leap as as a way to avoid the inconvenience of swimming from one pad to the next in the cold water. In other words, if a woman cheats on you, 99% of the time it's Sayonara, Baby. "I feel like the bulk of this is going to be him learning he needs to be responsible for his part of the relationship." Learning? That should be a no-brainer when one is relationship material in the first place. You shouldn't have to teach him how to treat people whom supposedly mean the world to him; you're not his mother, he should KNOW all of this in the first place. Why are you assuming he doesn't? And as for this: "he seems scared of restriction or being told what to do": [1] he shouldn't SEE it as restriction nor [2] have to be TOLD what to do, including listening to you reporting your state of unhappiness. Despite your misassumption, he does know. But this is the thing: a wounded, confused animal who's done nothing to help himself out of DefCon2 or 3 (think US Force's state of defense alert system) can't AFFORD to be thinking about anyone else and their feelings or tending to them - think about it. So it's all Me, Me, Me, I love you only when you're making me feel loved and pandered to. The minute you don't?... And the rest you know. And you can't bond with someone if you're still attached and affected, even to the event if no longer the woman herself. Don't feel sorry for the fact he's confused and wounded because animals in that state, if not 'reduced' those few levels from a high starting position in the first place, can be nasty, nasty uckers, emotionally speaking and when at that close range. Frankly. You yourself obviously didn't just sweep your heartache and the to-be-discovered reasons for it under the rug, despite that doesn't automatically mean you were strictly ready when matey and you first got together. That's fine if the man you're with is likewise happy to grieve a deux. But this guy clearly hasn't grieved and learned. All he's done is secretly don two extra suits of psychological armour, unwilling to give barely anything..because what one deposits is what makes one feel invested/attached/committed thus feeling partly responsible for the emotional state of your partner when it's representative of how the relationship's going (or not going). The heart lights are on but nobody's home. You imagine how YOU'D be constantly be feeling hence behaving if you were with a man whom you wouldn't let in thus whom you weren't sufficiently in-love with or barely at all, and it were HE 'yelling', LOVE ME MORE, WHY WON'T YOU LOVE ME MORE! You'd be thinking, Urrrch, JUST SHUDDUP AND STOP BEING SUCH A PAIN, CAN'TCHA?! It doesn't heartache him or make him feel like a cad, it's HASSLE. He's treating you and your causes for complaint the whole time like it's too much hard work. He feels OWED already...because 'the world' in the form of that ex/that event did him a disservice. "I started to say that maybe he had just pushed away the things in his life that tried to do that, and he responded that he was tired and needed to sleep." = NOT INTERESTED, DON'T WANNA HEAR IT, WOMAN (ach, keep the non-flattering lessons back!..BACK!). Seeing it now? That's what you're on the end of, more often than not. Who can SLEEP, knowing their supposedly prized relationship is in jeopardy?! One would have to be LITERALLY exhausted not to see themselves jolted wide-awake by that comment. "He nodded and said he thought he knew what was wrong. It ends up I had known the password to his email, when he had told me before I thought he was kidding because it's ridiculous. I apologized for not trusting him and he forgave me. He said he knew it would probably happen eventually and the absolute worse I could do is break up." He gave you his password without first having tidied up any upsetting seeming evidence? HMMMM. Yep, maybe not consciously, but, he PLANNED for you to, whoops, see that. Unless it were a bluff, bf's comment above about 'the worst thing you'd do would be chuck me' not only sounds like he was waiting for it to happen but that he's saying, I don't love and respect you *enough* to fear loss of you although I'd really rather you *not* leave me (but wouldn't cry meself a river if you did because I'm DONE with all that malarchy), whereas the bona fide NPD is *phobic* - about (basically, in a simplified nutshell) someone getting too close or abandoning them in whatever way BOTH. It's a directly oppositional co-morbidity, not based on any sane rationale except how badly he got treated during his formative years ("not that way up, this way, because yes it was your fault as usual that I was nasty to you for no reason, Little Jimmy";). Your bf is likely just doing a good impression of a PD, which is what I mean by being DefCon-ed... "they're all the same, the biczes, so never again am I going to be the servant; I'll be master and get someone to feed me without expecting or, worse, demanding that I feed her back, save for the odd crumbs; that way I'll get the perks without the work and making myself vulnerable (hah!)". Crumbs feel like a major improvement compared to past starvation, don't they. Well, they're not. They still come under being starved, despite this time not fatally. There's very little you can do in terms of "making" (??) him love you if matey didn't come out of that whole past experience having learned and needs to be put back a school-of-life year (or 2 or 3). He's not qualified to be in a relationship with that take-take-take/over-self-protective/give nothing but crumbs in return for three-course-meals to avoid my becoming investment=attachment attitude. Not on your timeline. He's your rebound relationship. It shouldn't BE him reciprocating, anyway. It should be you. HE'S the wooer-initiator of the piece. He Tarzan, not Jane....although he could have fooled us, eh! In which case: "Long haul and effort free- nothing is effort free with this one, but I understand what you're saying. If I did this, I wouldn't even be getting the "average"" Then he's not your lover, he's an unfeeling vending machine who is bankrupting you as you stuff coin after coin yet never get the choccie bar actually falling into the tray below! Dump the dud. Let him 'sleep'. ********** Now to you: You yourself weren't far enough along the Recovery Path when you met him, meaning, you went from dating a total git to dating a roughly HALF git. When you're wholly, completely recovered OR meet a likewise GENUINE heal-on-the-job merchant like yourself is when you'll experience the soulmate out of your total soulmate pool who is 100% ready, WILLING AND ABLE. No git anywhere. You get the govt you deserve (have worked for) and the relationship you deserve. Work: You need to have reached the mental workings-out stage where you realise that aside from rectifiable mistakes and things you could have avoided, it's this: Right Qualities (you), WRONG/INCAPABLE RECIPIENT. You aren't with your match, your bird of same feather. Not least because timelines are completely out of synch. And that's why, compared to your ex, this guy seems *okay enough*, and 'with potential', whereas by mine and Mr Soulmate's standards (and apparently TDOS's) he is PANTS. Either one of us would have chucked him in a heartbeat. And also, why your unwillingness to 'admit defeat' a second time on-the-trot. No, he's not adequate. I do NOT call the way he treats you and deals with you as being REMOTELY like how a man in truly-madly-deeply - or even just IN love - would behave or WANT to behave. And sometimes the decision to walk away, not KNOWING whether they'll beg you back and actually knuckle down properly and bravely thereafter, yet still agreeing with Whitney (rather be alone for a while than this unhappy) is not a show of weakness but a show of STRENGTH...... which undeniable demonstration of self- and life-love gets rewarded (HELLOOOO, TRUE SOULMATE...FINALLY!). Trust me, it's how it all works...is an 'invisible, secret' rite of passage..or a test that gets you the degree - even doctorate - existence. Considering how he treats you and blocks all attempts of yours to (er) "make" him finally want to cooperate so that he CAN fall in-love to the right, healthy and productive degree, I don't see how you can do ANYTHING other than dump physically/actually or dump emotionally, i.e. take X steps back and sit down and refuse to give him any more salary and perks for virtually nothing, not to mention these crumbs being purely those which drop from the table whilst eating the meal YOU gave him! It should be the other way round, anyway, as I say: the woman being take it or leave it neutral until he's wooed down her defences then got access to her heart and started on that until her clothes, whoops!, fall to the floor and her heart, whoops!, into his hands. Because matey's heart is certainly not in yours, by the looks and sounds of things. But, then, saying all of that, he IS still young and immature with a lot to learn. So, it would seem, have you: " I deleted every single picture and video of her from his email," You had absolutely no right to do that. Call the whole thing off if it was anathema to you and see if he then made that decision himself as a show of faith, yes. But delete someone else's 'memory box', without even having 'put them on trial' yet, is a definite no-no and a sign of (post-traumatic reactive) control freakery. For all you knew at the time, he could have found them cathartic. I and Mr S still held a few pictures (not sexual ones, granted, just mug-shots) of both our exes for a while there. It helped to look at them occasionally, to think, EW, WHAT WAS I THINKING! and appreciate each other, and Us, all the more. In fact, we'd look together and have a competition about who back then wasn't thinking the most, LOL (both of us equally, actually). But, okay, that's not the case here, granted, because you only need their face for that. His ex may have made the oh-so self-harmingly wrong choice in cheating on him, but at least she quickly cottoned onto the fact that no-one should have to work that incredibly hard just to get paid the bog-standard salary, let alone expenses and perks, and, indeed, refused to (- maybe she clocked those pictures as well?). Take a tip: seriously ultimatum him or just leave him and let him have to GET REAL AND MAN UP for once if he wants you back. If he and his pea-brain can't work out WHY she wandered off into the arms of another man then that's HIS slow-to-learn problem. You're not his Whipping Boy. He should take other people and their complaints or threats *seriously*, then, shouldn't he. Sorry. :-( But, aside from bereft for a wee while, don't be downright miserable because, as I say, this horrid-feeling episode is just a stepping-stone to significantly better and greater things,...just the contractions that lead to the baby popping out... whereupon you and your perfect, equally ripe Like frequently raise a glass to him (and her, his own ex) in abject gratitude for the REALLY intense class called, what I definitely don't want and definitely DO want featuring in a relationship in this one, short life (including it having a proper, truly-madly-deeply intensity and commitment). And that - unbeknownst to you at this in-the-dark point of play - is what all this effort you've put in has been for. Not for getting to keep him. Your true soulmate is going to positively FOIE GRAS you with love! You'll be stuffed to the gills (and for a while, struggling with it because it's not what you're used to and feels weird/wrong, LOL). If you still feel incapable of saying NO, I AIN'T HAVING THIS, BEING TREATED SO SHODDILY BY THE ONE PERSON WHO SHOULDN'T EVER BE LIKE THAT TOWARDS ME!, then I suggest you read Mira Kirshenbaum's absolute godsend - repeat, GODSEND of a book for people who can't leave because the other person's still got their heart and won't give it back and do the gentlemanly thing of setting you free to be found by Mr Right. It's called, "Too Good To Leave/Too Bad To Stay" (available online). If SHE can't convince you you're with what at this stage, certainly, is a chocolate teapot, then no-one can! What say you after all of that?

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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I thought he had seen an email notification with this alias. I've posted before about a problem we had and couldn't work through; it ended with him red in the race with rage and at that point there's no way to deal with someone. I didn't want it happening again. I cannot count the number of times I've thought and said TO HIM that she ruined his outlook on relationships, but that it wasn't his excuse to act like I was his ex. He would actually respond to this sometimes in an agreeable manor, followed by "but some things, people don't change". Obviously they do change if she was able to change him. It's arrogant of me to say, but I know I am better relationship material. I understand my feelings as well as the other's and will act in whatever way needed to make that person as happy as possible. I've tried for so long to TELL him what I need because some people aren't emotionally intelligent. He either blows it off or says he is trying, but I don't try to notice (as if I don't care about getting what I'm asking for?). His avoids emotions at all cost. My comment about "I started to say that maybe he had just pushed away the things in his life that tried to do that, and he responded that he was tired and needed to sleep.", had he said something similar to me, I would have been up all night trying to text and call to talk about it. I would be so sick to my stomach I would most likely be in the bathroom the whole time. Not him. He woke up the next morning after a great night of sleep and acted like nothing had happened. When I finally left my ex, my boyfriend made sure he was in the side wings to come swinging down and save the day. It's always made me wonder where that heroism went, until I realized the real situation might have been him using me as the giant pillow to jump on and rescue him. I admitted to him the pictures and videos were not mine to delete. It was a fit of rage and frustration that is not like my normal character. I would have been more understanding and left them had they just been face shots, like you were saying. I found one of just her face last year on his phone and asked him about it, he deleted it, not me. I've found hard copies of pictures of the kid she became pregnant with because of the cheating while they were together, and every time we just laugh and HE rips them up and throws them away. I've told him a few times if he wanted to keep one as a memory, it wouldn't hurt me. It's his past. But these weren't her face, they weren't her kid. It was 47 pictures of nudity, about half of them full body, the other half just breasts, none showing even her neck. Then there were the 3 videos of them having sex from his position with her on top (yeah, you can imagine all the detail I didn't want to see that I did see) that I deleted. Obviously these weren't for memories you'd want to have of an ex. I know it was wrong of me, but I can't say if I had the opportunity to do it over I wouldn't delete them. The only reason I wouldn't have would be to approach him, and I originally wasn't going to do that. I had pictures of my ex, but I deleted them when we broke up, I don't see why he couldn't do the same. He has always made everyone think the ex is insane, he actually gave her the nickname of "crazy". I've talked to him before that maybe when several people have told him the same thing, it might be he's the underlying issue, not them. He very quickly redirects and starts arguing so insanely that it's impossible to speak to him about anything. He's said before he wouldn't be able to live without me. I know this technique. I do think he would attempt, however. What would I do there? I'm honestly just looking for equality, or at the very least someone TRYING as hard as I am. I am running into a tangle, though. In 4 days we're going on vacation for a week. We've been planning the trip for almost the last year, and can't get refunds. I've paid for about half, as has he. What do I do? Just slowly back away and see if when he notices (because he will, and he will ask) that he'll listen and comply to my requests?

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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Red in the face with - RAGE? Oh? Do tell? And you have told him many a time not to keep judging you, even unwittingly, as if you're his ex? So you've effectively provided a future forecast via the strongly implicational fact in having equated your current unhappiness with what so obviously had been the ex's at your particular (earlier) junction as led directly to her LEAVING HIM and yet, STILL, this warning has never made a blind bit of difference? Then either he needs a Venn diagram or he does not care enough. But nobody's that thick. "It's arrogant of me to say, but I know I am better relationship material." Why is it arrogant if you know in your heart of hearts that you bust a gut to be the best girlfriend you can be and that 'if you were a boy' you'd think yourself lucky to have a girlfriend such as yourself? Arrogance is FALSE confidence, only an act at it. And because it's an act, yet the person concerned not a professional actor, they do what all amateurs do and ham it up/go too far and end up coming across as someone desperate to convince *themselves* via their verbal and empty-gesture posturing to the contrary in with their attempt to convince you. I had an ex who right off the bat of his starting to, comparatively-speaking, d*ck me around at month 3, used to keep, defensively as well as inapropos of anything, telling me what a nice guy he was. I thought uh-oh (and was right). Nice guy is as nice guy *does*, in which case his actions speak *for* him, leaving absolutely zero need for any verbal pointing out. Put it this way: I'm a very generous person. Do I go around telling everyone, 'I'm a really generous person'? Nope, zero need. It, as I say, speaks for itself. So matey was trying to make up for the deficit of Nice Guy behaviour using whatever various statements along that same theme. ("You can't call me THAT - I'm BEAUDIFUL!" - Muriel's Wedding, have you seen it?) Mouth says 'I'm nice', actions say 'No, I'm not'. Your "bf" has NO RIGHT to get enraged (cheeky ucker!). If he would communicate properly with you LIKE ANY RELATIONSHIP PARTNER SHOULD and take the trouble to SUPPLY the answers you needed - likewise a bog-standard relationship requisite in terms of the Top 5 female needs (sense of security) - in order that you could know where exactly you stood with him (in order to roughly know where you were headed for standing), you wouldn't need to seek out opinions from other people, now, would you - stands to reason. So he can get furious with himself (and in the process beat himself up if he wants!) (and sell tickets) (I'll buy one :-p). You have the right to talk to anyone you damn well please, especially if it's in reaction to his leaving you confused. When a healthy male truly loves you, Victoria, YOU DAMN WELL KNOW IT, DON'T NEED IT SAID OUT-LOUD (despite you love it) AND DON'T NEED TO EVER WONDER save for very fleetingly here and there due to normal, natural wobbles, followed always by just as quickly calming down and feeling like a right idiot for having doubted him and failed to take into account all the evidence to-date to the contrary. You sound like you're doing the opposite: spending the whole time wobbling, with any sense of faith being the fleeting bit. Methinks the reason he gets enraged is precisely because he doesn't want you getting your suspicions confirmed about what his whole behaviour belies. He must be convinced you actually DON'T KNOW you should be receiving better attitudes and treatment, thus, without independent feedback, would be sat there, thinking you should be happy with your lot and hence wondering what's wrong with YOU. What she didn't or did throughout the relationship and towards the end couldn't ruin his outlook on relationship-SUH, only the one he experienced WITH HER - because SHE IS NOT THE EMBODIMENT OF ALL WOMEN - and hence he could just as easily have come out of it realising simply that she and he had been a bad match yet simultaneously having learned what never to do or ensure to do in his next relationship in terms of what, per quantities dealt, tends to kick the love out of all females generally. Is that rocket science? Hardly! "He would actually respond to this sometimes in an agreeable manor, followed by "but some things, people don't change". Obviously they do change if she was able to change him." 1. Despite how it might sound out of the mouth, it's not a *genuine* manner demonstrating agreement if in the next breath he WHOLLY CONTRADICTS IT. 2. Unless what he's whoops!-admitting is that she did not change him because he was like that with her too? Think about why a woman cheats instead of first ending that relationship and going on the cruise completely available and tie-free. Yes, there's the element I mentioned of her not having the strength and confidence to go it alone as an independent, self-sufficient woman. But there's also the one of her knowing it'd be too difficult (for someone as weak and trepidatious as her) to ONE, TWO, THREE, DUMP! - cut the umbilicus - and then get over him, unless she's doing it from a position of being *under someone else* (i.e. a weaning-off of addiction to Heroin down to the less harmful Methodone, transference of affections). This is the meaning of too good to leave/too bad to stay mentality *in application* if some new bloke/relationship has to provide the weight with which to tip her decision-making scales from Should Stay or Ambiguity to Should Leave. HOWEVER, a lot of the time what hindsight tends to reveal felt 'too good' IN REALITY was purely HOW THE WOMAN FELT FOR *HIM*, i.e. 'she loves to love'...(despite her 'baby just wants to dance';) and loves not feeling lonely and alone in the 'outside world' sense compared to lonely and alone despite supposedly being teamed up. Thing is, once she does dare to chuck him, after the initial wrench's aftermath, she finds her over-active imagination when riddled with negativity had been right royally fooling her and to her astonishment feels like a huge weight's been lifted off her shoulders (followed by kicking herself hard for not having dumped the dud sooner). This is purely what the individual TELLS herself though, because, logically, if X millions of other single men and women out there can manage perfectly nicely these days, despite some of them clearly downright DENSE or IMMATURE, then *she certainly* could. So it's just an excuse. To be lazy/avoid any hard mental work (or just work per se). And, despite the senses of security and their aetiology differ, that's what he's doing. As are you (now, in reaction). Intense enough chemistry both physical and mental tends to blow ALL resentments and doubts connected to the past out of the water (it's called, she feels refreshingly different), meaning, were you and he right together/had sufficient chemistry he wouldn't be doing all he could to avoid experiencing the bog-standard sense of vulnerability as results in placing his precious heart in someone else's hands, and you wouldn't be left to carry HIS share of vulnerability along with your own. That's not teamwork, it's one member exploiting another. News for him: Albeit other person-less, THAT IS A FORM OF CHEATING... trying to get the salary and perks from you and the relationship without having to suffer the hard graft part in order to get it. "When I finally left my ex, my boyfriend made sure he was in the side wings to come swinging down and save the day." Oh DID he, indeed. Thank-you for that further confirmation. It's called Predator. The male can SEE you're half-starved (vulnerable) and so concludes a woman with your now naturally shrunken thus tiny appetite would settle for just crumbs...because crumbs are all he from the outset is willing to risk investing in your love bank. Think about it: if you were really a bank and you had significant amounts of his 'money' deposited by him then he would want to ensure against ever helping to make you go out of business and his investments down the pan with it, including regular feedback about what he, the customer, accordingly needed to cooperatively do (which he would). If, however, one has just a Post Office account holding only £100, one isn't too fussed about communication and instructions and can walk away relatively unscathed at any moment. It's insurance, Jim, but not as we know it. After all, it's the customers who place the MASSIVE amounts of their precious cash in a bank that are rewarded with higher amounts of interest, respect, considerate-ness, AND GUARANTEES AGAINST EVER BEING LEFT HIGH AND DRY. His cunning little cowardly plan is nothing but a negative self-fulfilling prophesy because - LOOK WHERE IT'S GOT HIM! He's enraged? You must be so exasperated you're LIVID! The part that makes this guy emotionally thick as pig-sh*t is the lack of far-sightedness as dictates via pure logic that as one regains ones strength just enough, through crumbs still being food compared to past nothingness AND through one making up the deficit through finding ways to feed oneself, ones appetite cannot, despite slowly, fail to re-grow more back to normal...at which point one surveys his proffered plate of crumbs like this: PFFFFF, call that a meal?! That's where you're at right now, yet with him refusing to give you any meat and two veg while insisting that's what it is. Well, it can't be.. because you didn't decide to post for feedback and advice for the sheer fun and larks of it, did you. "It was 47 pictures of nudity, about half of them full body, the other half just breasts, none showing even her neck." He likes a little sing-song: 'I'm-tur-ning Japa-nese I-think-I'm tur-ning Japa-nese, I really THINK so (dow-now-now nowt nowt nowt noww)' (- name the 80s indie rock band!) and "...she's jus-ta gi-irl, claimin' I..am the one....but the chi-iild's not ma son". That he was the one to rip and dispose of them would be fine IF, MEANWHILE he were doing the other side of what that gesture would ordinarily suggest. *I* suggest he has copies somewhere. "Then there were the 3 videos of them having sex from his position with her on top (yeah, you can imagine all the detail I didn't want to see that I did see)" Do you know FOR A FACT that his ex did cheat on him? Do you know FOR A FACT that she was aware and had given her prior consent for this filming to take place? Or does its nature (e.g. viewing angle and lux) suggest it were through a hidden, pinhole camera positioned, say, from within a holdall on his bedroom chair? Reason I ask is because of this: "He has always made everyone think the ex is insane, he actually gave her the nickname of "crazy"." "it might be he's the underlying issue, not them. He very quickly redirects and starts arguing so insanely that it's impossible to speak to him about anything." There speaks the victim-bully, he din't do NUFFINK, occifer - he's an angel! How queer, then, that an angel would have fallen so incredibly far in so short a space of time, eh. How did he cover that downward distance - by Lear Jet? But look, even if you're "scary lady" to his wimp and he just can't handle you (unless you're in a state of low confidence and fear-based obsequiousness), let alone know how to keep you happy (duh), the ins and outs [scuse pun] are immaterial for being only X number of symptoms out of the entire range. The DISEASE is called, Crumb-Thrower to your Three-Course-Meal-provider. You're not a Blue Tit, you can't ever be happy with a crumb-thrower, particularly one who refuses to up the ante and/or DROPS the uppage the minute you next have something warranted to complain about. It makes a mockery of his ripping up those pictures even if he doesn't have copies. Think about it: if you felt stuffed full and like a goddess amongst women in his eyes, complaints treated rightly like beseechments for the good of the both of you and your future, those photos wouldn't have bothered you because it would have been too no-brainer not to have concluded he'd simply forgotten they were still there. Right? "I know it was wrong of me, but I can't say if I had the opportunity to do it over I wouldn't delete them." Then you need to change your attitude so that in future you will do only what is in your right to do, which is calmly yet firmly refuse to see him until he's explained - to YOUR satisfaction - why he possesses and demonstrates evidence contradicting his alleged loving feelings and sense of seriousness of this relationship. If he refuses, procrastinates or is pathetically unconvincing, you dump the dud. The quicker you dump the duds, considering it's a lucky-drip, the quicker you come across the prize man. ***** Back to the here and now and this holiday: If you want to last-ditch try to slap some sense into him, in the form of holding 'his' holiday with you to ransom, then - THAT'S MORE LIKE IT! Why SHOULD he get that when it's a PERK for which he is refusing to WORK? Who would WANT to go on holiday with someone that's in whatever ways causing them pain and refuses to stop when they're supposed to be providing pleasure? But, just out of curiosity, in whose name are all the tickets booked?

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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"lucky-drip" ROLL ON FLOOR LAUGHING, is that a massive Freudian Slip or what! Yes, 'sadly', it's true you've gotta kiss a lot of frogs (work) before you find your Prince (perk).

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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I like a sing-song as well... Drip-drip-STOP, liddle A-pril flow-ers, la, la-la-la, la-la-la YOU-WIMPS! (heh)

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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Yes, I leave nothing up to him guessing why I might be frustrated or what I need. I tell him, and I tell him what is coming and why. It's his own stubbornness, spite, and unwillingness to change that keeps him in the position he is in. Anytime I've talked to anyone about our arguments: my mother, online forums, even my counselor- he becomes mad and asks why I just don't go have a relationship with the person I really want to talk to and he storms away. It doesn't matter that I explain he is who I TRY to talk to and those three end up being my last resorts because he won't listen. He thinks he can replace affection, communication, everything he chooses not to include with money. If it's something he doesn't want to deal with he'll throw money at it in the form of a gift and hope it goes away. When it doesn't, he complains he does nice things and I'm not appreciative of the things I'm given. The Vapors... I know FOR A FACT his ex cheated on him. She became pregnant with another guy's child while my current boy friend and her were dating. When the kid was born the paternity test matched the guy she had slept with. He had her consent to video tape; you can't get a clearer angle or lighting. She did whatever he told her to in bed. In the emails I also found a "chore list" that listed tasks such as "Friday- 3 pictures of boobs sent to phone and email, 1 page of punishments we haven't done written and sent to email, 1 picture of boobs with clothespins and you using a toy on yourself. Saturday-..." They were extremely detailed and when I asked him about them, his response was "aren't you glad you went through my email?" I'm going to go with him on the vacation and enjoy my time relaxing, whether he wants to be a jerk or not is his decision. I'll let him blab to the wall and laugh when he gets frustrated that I'M the one not listening for once. The 11 hour drive will take some creativity, but I have headphones, and the rental car is in his name so I don't plan on driving. I can sleep the whole way if I choose. The hotel is in my name so if he pisses me off, I guess he'll be finding his own place to sleep.

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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(bump) (for tomorrow)

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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(Vic (Rub) (as I called them) & The Vapours - correct! :-)) 1. "Anytime I've talked to anyone about our arguments: my mother, online forums, even my counselor- he becomes mad and asks why I just don't go have a relationship with the person I really want to talk to and he storms away. It doesn't matter that I explain he is who I TRY to talk to and those three end up being my last resorts because he won't listen." "Meh-meh-MEH!"... It's not about who listens and steers you. It's about anyone LISTENING AND STEERING and thereby giving you the CONFIDENCE with which to stand up for your rights and expectations, whereupon he'd have to yield more juice as well as the right juice. HE can't advise you - because he'd have to outright lie to your face, hence not wanting to talk. He KNOWS he's guilty, he just doesn't want to admit it and do anything about it either off his own bat or yours. Too much like hard work, eh. Manipulating you to stay put and not leave him is easier (wronggggg!). 2. " He thinks he can replace affection, communication, everything he chooses not to include with money. If it's something he doesn't want to deal with he'll throw money at it in the form of a gift and hope it goes away. When it doesn't, he complains he does nice things and I'm not appreciative of the things I'm given." Yes, because a bank note, unlike a heart, can't get broken. If ripped, no first-hand pain is felt, just annoyance. But - does nice things? Oh, I see, your jailer serves up your breadcrumbs and water on a tray with a little (sadly, inedible) flower on it, ergo you should be grateful? Can I laugh now or should I hold off for later? 3. Unfortunately, he's using the fact of his ex having cheated on him as his brilliant excuse when he could equally have come out of the whole thing vowing [1] never to treat any lover of HIS that heinously, not even via mere impressions as cause suspicion and anxiety, as a way to prove himself superior (revenge), and [2] adjust his past behaviour, whatever he on closer examination of 'the tapes' has been able to work out was unacceptable or non-conducive (both per se and with that type of female personality), in the right and healthy ways. What he's doing is, for example, coming up behind his partner washing-up at the sink and grabbing her boobs and shoving his groin into her whilst making copulatory motions, claiming all aghast, when she complains, that that was merely his attempt to give her a CUDDLE (ergo - manipulation-manipulation - she's the unreasonable one). She's then said, 'Well, can you please NOT cuddle me like that and do it properly, it makes me feel like nothing but a piece of meat', to which he's retorted, 'OH!...WELL, I WON'T TRY TO CUDDLE YOU *AT ALL* THEN!...EVER!'. It just translates to, 'Take it or get nothing! In fact, I'll do whatever I want for whatever reasons and if you dare complain or ask me to explain, the puppy will get it!' And the aetiology is, HAVING TO DO IT PROPERLY (ach!). He's never even opened his baggage, let alone sifted through it, so it's veeeeery heavy, meaning, he's constantly veeeery knackered (and still too leery and put off at the thought of potentially collecting yet more stuff to have to put in it). You can't be any good as anyone's relationship partner if you don't have the energy OR THE B*LLS. It's SCARY being increasingly that under-the-microscope (in case at whatever point you hear an "ugh!";) (or *another* ugh, I should say) and stripped naked including your very skin, whereby any touch can hurt. So he slaps Vaseline on your microscope lens and wraps himself in banknotes (for warmth and protection) whenever your gaze is turned. He WANTS you, as in doesn't want to be girlfriend- and sh*g-on-tap-less. But he doesn't want to do the hard work involved in making you want him back, rather than by your fearing leaving him simply because the puppy will get it and you're still too confused and dizzy, thanks to him, to navigate straight beyond the door threshold rather than fall head-first into the front flower-bed), because it all involves his making himself VULNERABLE AGAIN. Whether only reactively/currently or permanently, he's a negative, cowardly personality. You need a more positive, brave, determined type who understands that where wooing like crazy to get her hand and then continuing to woo to KEEP her hand is concerned, the man is the 'punter' and the woman the choccie-dispensing machine. No coins or insufficient coins or bent coins in = eff-all choccie. Bashing the machine or making it shake violently might well produce free bars in the dispensing tray or bars you've only half-paid for but, sooner or later, the machine is going to become however out-of-order or shut down completely OR SUMMON HELP BY SOUNDING ITS INBUILT ALARM. Now't wrong with YOUR alarm, is there. "Um, she's TELLING on me, she's a tittle-tattler!". Damn right. Bullies, whether full-on or mild, whether knowingly from the start a bully or more simply whereby their insurance aids inadvertently hurt, all rely on their victim's silence - as requires the gaffa tape known as fear. And bullies are - fact - the once-bullied, trying (the wrong way) to climb back up to where they were before knocked down OR start off tall to compensate for the "inevitable" fall. But climbing up by using someone else as a human step-stool. The more desperate they are not to fall again, the more they can't afford to take any notice of your ouch-ing under his weight. ********* "He had her consent to video tape; you can't get a clearer angle or lighting." What kind of person would seemingly price-tag their own most sacred goods so cheaply (PoundLand!) as to consent to even the mere possibility of having them vicariously bandied about amongst other men? Answer: someone who was too scared about what she stood to lose if not, or someone who doesn't see themselves as the valuable commodity they are (keeper of the sacred oven, source member of all humanity). Or both. Did he ever try that sex-slave nonsense with you? ********* This guy hates himself/is angry at himself SO MUCH, yet so can't face that truth that he'd rather kick and punch himself through A. N. Other, whomever he feels is a smaller kid than him. That way, those same kicks and punches not only eventually come back to him under his own and anyone else's "ah-HAH!-ing" radar but additionally under a huge time-delay as just compounds the difficulty in joining the two dots (or so he hopes). The pain is not then at his own hand, but YOURS, meaning, he can continue his delusion of being constantly the poor wickle persecuted victim and continue hating (wow, he must have a lot of old, banked-up rage in him!). If you're a victim, you're not the one who has to change, via a huge in-tray of a workload. Not only that, he gets 'two for the price of one' in hurting the enemy (other people/life - same thing), despite the original perpetrator, the one who does deserve vengeance (albeit can always be left to Fate to deal with), is now out of range. Hence... "" They were extremely detailed and when I asked him about them, his response was "aren't you glad you went through my email?"" Here's your punishment for having put me under the microscope and found a live maggot. Here's my punishment in the form of your punishment for my featuring maggots in the first place. But visible bruises would get me into trouble so I'll punch your invisible stomach with my invisible fists. Get out of his crosshairs. Soon enough, everyone, every target, will have scarpered...at which point he'll have to concede that although a vengeful life may empty your magazine, you just end up in total isolation and loneliness for miles around. He is not qualified to be a relationship partner. But fine, take the holiday rather than lose out, if you're sure you can mostly ignore him as well as feel disdain for him? It's not like he hasn't deserved to be used like that, is it. Plus it would be insult to injury if you lost money on top. But be aware: that is you, having already sounded the alarm but, thanks to him, having seen it make zero difference, going out-of-order, shutting down. "The hotel is in my name so if he pisses me off, I guess he'll be finding his own place to sleep." Kudos! The b*tch is back! Let's see how he likes the shoe automatically being on the other foot, shall we? But if that doesn't work to bring him up sharp - leave physically as well. And this is WHY he 'sat on you'. Because you always WERE too big for him and he knew it. Greedily/over-entitledly bit off more than he could chew AND when his jaw was still wired up. He should have stuck to liquids. Like Cow & Gate Formula. And Infacol.

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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The 12 hour drive with about 3 hours of traffic was fun. Lots of talking. I found out he will never move out of the US and that's final. Also "the only thing he can't stand in a woman is my worse flaw", control, which seems to mean a lot of shit and simple thing I do a a lot. I let him have it (why I felt he was full of shit, I didn't care that he didn't like me being controling ie sticking up for myself, and if he didn't like it he could take a flying leap) then fell asleep. Later I asked about sex slave thing. He's tried it with me, but he CAN'T. Again he blames my very strong willed attitude and said is was easy with "crazy" because she'd do anything she was told (I guess he forgot to directly tell her not to run off, cheat, and get pregnant). I'm nothing like her and for that reason he has never been able to. Sunday night we were laying in bed watching tv. (I even brought my own blanket.) He all of a sudden looks over at me and tears are running down his face. I've never seen him cry. I'm almost freaking out thinking it's a freaction to not being able to breath or something and he says "I love you so much, please never leave me."..... Where the F did that come from?!?! I asked him where he got the idea I was going to and he shook his head said he just had a feeling and he didn't ever want to lose me. He's played the "I'll do what it takes to shut you up" game, but never the "I'm act actually going to show emotion and do something about it" game.

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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Yeah. His definition of you controlling him is by demanding that he cease trying to control YOU. He's not even considering your feelings or points of view, Victoria, he's not capable, still too much in Me-Me-Me wounded animal mode. And that's why he's not qualified to be anyone's partner because the idea of relationships is that you swap self-caretaking (which you now have down pat) for mutual: you "scratch" my back, I'll scratch yours. You can't be sensitive of and attentive to another person's needs if you're still in Me-Me-Me mode, needing all hands on your own deck. All you want then is a HELPER. Seeing it? LOL, let him have it and then fell asleep. What - 'finally', you mean? He can't sex-slave you? Well, then, what this translates to is that he isn't interested in having sex unless it's completely on his terms. Gosh, be still my beating heart! He wants the relationship completely on his terms and all the enhancing accoutrements as well. ";(I guess he forgot to directly tell her not to run off, cheat, and get pregnant" GAFFAW-GAFFAW! Good to see you've got your power in the form of sense of humour back! Hmm... tears running down his face, eh? The seeming instant epiphany, eh? Yeah, seen that one before so proceed with caution in case it's merely called, the thumb-screws didn't work so now I'll try the violin approach - i.e. his attempt simply to deny you your new source of turbo (anger) by splashing its fuse with water droplets. Only time featuring a consistent turn-around in attitude and actions will prove whether they were genuine, will they not. I'll repeat that: sorry is as sorry *does* (without delay). Say that 15 times, please, so you can't forget it or forget to recall it, because that should be your new front-of-mind mantra. Watch that space and keep me posted if you want me to guide you through this or out of it (whichever he from now on proves you'd be best doing) or just keep you from doubting your own sanity, okay?

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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In other words (sorry, flitting, short on time today), it's not up to you to simply decide not to leave him, it's up to him to newly give you all the reasons in the world to stay. He wouldn't NEED to cry if he'd fed you properly. So let's see whether he gives himself yet more reasons to shed tears, shall we? Ber-bom!

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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The vacation was great. When he'd start to be an ass I'd look at him and say "don't start this, I deserve to be treated better and you KNOW it." The first time it started a small argument and I knew it wasn't going anywhere. The second and third time he got frustrated and tried starting another argument, but I just gave him the face and he pouted. After that I only had to say it once or twice more and he'd just shut up and change the subject. By the end of the week we were both having a great time. Everything felt back to what it had been. The stresses of work, school, family, seemed to vanish by getting away from them. He did say one pretty hurtful thing (one of those you don't even know how to respond it shocks you so much) and I shut down for the rest of the evening. What made it even worse was once he realized I was mad he said "sorry" while looking and scrolling through Facebook, not even bothering to look up at me. I told him that was not an apology, it was him adding more insult to injury and until he was ready to apologize correctly by looking me in the eye and saying what he was sorry for, I would still feel hurt. It took him until the next morning, me being showered, packed, and sitting on the chair by the door with a coffee and looking at plane trips back might have prompted it, but he sincerely apologized. Today, because he's swamped at work, he asked me to respond to his email about a small day trip he wants to take. We're planning on visiting someone a few hours away, so he wanted to get a date and time set up, as well as prices for another rental car. After typing up the email I was clicking send and the page wasn't doing anything, so I clicked it again. When it reloaded, I must have clicked on another link while it was on it's white loading screen (completely accidental, I learned my lesson last time with snooping), and it opened up a "smart folder" I didn't know was even there. Up pops pictures of myself from when we started dating, that I didn't know he had kept. The folder was dated July 2015 (we got together summer of 2013). It made me happy to know he had not only kept, but sent pictures of me to himself. As I was scrolling through them pictures of guess who showed up?!?!?!?! Yeah, "crazy" and her child. "Crazy" was naked in all of them.... He sent these to himself this summer, after we had been dating almost 2 years. I'm suppose to see him tonight and I asked to see him a little early to talk, so he knows something is up. My heart is racing out of my chest I am so upset and scared. I know you're several hours ahead of me, but if you read this in the next 3 hours or so, could you respond ASAP?

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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"When he'd start to be an ass I'd look at him and say "don't start this, I deserve to be treated better and you KNOW it."" [thumps chest twice] GOOD GIRL! That's more like it...assuming one always provides the consistent, congruent actions, of course. Which you absolutely, CONSISTENTLY did. And without a how-to manual! :-) (By the way - what's 'the face'?) Of course he kept trying to engage you in an argument. It's a zero-vulnerability litmus test. If you still care AND to the extent where you're manipulable, you'll get sucked in and upset. It's still a choccie bar clanging into the tray below, despite a mouldy one. Beats his having to ask if you still love him (and possibly hearing the dreaded No). "and I shut down for the rest of the evening" "It took him until the next morning, me being showered, packed, and sitting on the chair by the door with a coffee and looking at plane trips back might have prompted it, but he sincerely apologized." Keep that up! It's no different to you and he playing catch with a ball. If the person you're playing with keeps slamming the ball into your face or body, do you sit and analytically interrogate them for hours about their reasons? No, you don't, not if you're not desperate for a playmate nor lacking self-respect. You simply respond by telling them that because they refuse to cease their behaviour, you're off to play by yourself or someone else. And then you actually do it (your case, emotional and interactional withdrawal). Ber-bom. One side of him won't have liked that new hard-nosed attitude of yours but the other will have formed new-found respect for you. So that's a definite Win because the latter side is his overriding, persevering one. PS: It wasn't the snooping that was the problem, so get that idea RIGHT out of your head. If you're in a romantic relationship then you're in a two-membered team as includes the requisite feature called Mutual Protection. Therefore, one of a team's basic DUTIES requires the mutual offering-up of all and any information by which ones partner can emotionally protect themselves. The optimum obviously is that they do the protecting of you (as equally as you protect them), assuming becoming 'steady' (committed & exclusive) is the point reached. If, therefore, you SENSE vital information by which to protect yourself is being withheld or concertedly hidden, automatically meaning that protection of you falls back to yourself, you are within-rights to seek it and repair your dented psychological welfare by whatever means possible or available. Furthermore, you can't expose someone's agenda unless that person has HIDDEN his agenda (acted like a singleton and opponent)...but his agenda, if, as I say, it at all affects the calibre of the relationship and thereby your welfare, belongs to you as well, according to the whole philosophical back-drop of a romance (TEAM). Team members share *everything* relevant and pertinent. The problem was only your deleting these videos and photos. We clear on that now? "The folder was dated July 2015 (we got together summer of 2013). It made me happy to know he had not only kept, but sent pictures of me to himself. As I was scrolling through them pictures of guess who showed up?!?!?!?! Yeah, "crazy" and her child. "Crazy" was naked in all of them.... He sent these to himself this summer, after we had been dating almost 2 years." Course he did - the problem here is not him not being into you, it's only him trying to pre-limit any bog-standard risks of rejection and pain, i.e. his needing to self-protect being greater than his feelings and commitment towards you. He sent them this summer because that was when he sensed he was becoming less and less secure and needed a way to level the playing field as well as agitate you into greater keenness or dropping the 'take it or leave it' chilled act. Sorry I've been absent for a few days and didn't read this/your request to respond until now. But I don't really think you need my direction, anyway, I think you instinctively know what you're doing and just need a hand to hold while you do it. So what happened?

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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My mom has been a teacher for almost 30 years. I've learned the teacher face very well: the "I might have had my back turned, but I have eyes on the back of my head and I saw what you just tried to get away with" look. He doesn't like my mother, she's very string willed, highly educated, and she rules the roost. My dad knows to listen or else there's HER hell to pay. He's said multiple times he's afraid I'll end up like my mother. I've told him I'd be darn proud of myself if I did because of the woman she is. I approached him with the emails (I found another after I posted). He looked like he had been crying at work (construction field) and was expecting me to break up with him when I told him why I wanted to talk. He said he admitted he had no reason or excuse to send them or have them. He hasn't done it since (his email shows that too). He couldn't give me a reason why he was doing it: to get back at me, for use..., to keep as ego boosters, as memories, nothing. I didn't delete them. They're still there. He never looked at them, even though he sent them according to him. It was just an email he forwarded to himself. He's currently on probation with me. I told him one more screw up, even a minor thing, and he could kiss our relationship goodbye, and forgot about ever even seeing me again. I can handle it, I'm just very deep into all of this and I haven't even talked to my mom about it.

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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Yep, I know the kind of look. I call it the Paddington Hard Stare. On those occasions he's said he's afraid you'll end up like your mother, I think it's clear that what he was referring to was the over-dominance/emasculation aspect per se (which you have to admit, by the way you describe, sounds the clear case). If that's what you were stating you'd be proud of, then...er, que? *Neither* romantic partner should be dominant, regardless of gender, certainly not if long-term success is your aim. And if it is then equality overall should be sought to be struck, be it via tit-for-tat, takesie-turnsies or plain, old-fashioned bartering (or a customised cocktail), with any dominance featuring only whenever one of you is ill, down or out for the count and hence the other called to take up the slack for a while... Dominance as in, lion's share of responsibilities, as any non-normal situation or circumstance demands, not as a default and certainly not in the sense of elevated heirarchy. Might you mean, if dominance has to be part and parcel of those other laudible qualities and high achievements of hers, then so be it, rough with smooth and all that? And is that over-bearing-ness a mandatory tag-on or could you match her confidence and achievements without it? Could he have taken it like I'm right now questioning you over, and - his fear of ending up like your father, particularly if he's grown up with different or even the directly opposite role-modelling - be why he (theoretically) seems to be trying to pull you down a peg or two, albeit going about it ham-fistedly thus OTT to where it lands him in self-sabotage territory? Or is this an incompatibility issue at root - both you and he vying for top dog position rather than two equally top dogs now teamed up? After all, you're definitely in a power struggle phase lately, wouldn't you agree? What's are his own parents like as a team? What do you mean, he couldn't give you a reason, even when you reeled off a list of the usual suspects? What exactly did he say? Not sure you can count transgressions that happened PRIOR to this recent showdown talk as if they were newly committed and current misdemeanours, can you? Or were you expecting to see him clear his annals of any offensive emails and photos in the one fell swoop, there and then? If you were - did you make that crystal clear? And does the fact that they're 'still there' count already as 'another screw-up'? Why 'even a minor thing'? Define 'minor'? So you normally talk to you mum about it? And does she tend to advise you according to this Amazonian-like stance of hers? Is that why this time you didn't? Or because you're simply emulating her based on all past advice? (Is that a "gotcha?" ;-))

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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By emulating her, I mean that I don't necessarily agree how she dominates everything, especially her relationship with my dad, but she is willing to stand up to anyone and speak up for herself. She's normally very emotionally intelligent and knows when she needs to take a breath before saying something she doesn't mean. She's very level headed, but when it comes to me she's very protective, and that's why I didn't bring this problem to her. His parents are confusing. His dad gives off the teasing impression that men should be in charge and women are naggy but need taken care of, but his mom is super last and stays at home, spending every dime he makes on stupid stuff, so I think that's why his dad acts that way. He literally said "I don't know why I sent those to myself. I have no reason." when I asked him. I asked him if there had been anything prior and he also couldn't remember that. Then he went on a pitty party rant on how horrible it is to be forgetting stuff all the time. I told him I was upset and I would be upset if I found more, but anything prior to then that may come up I wouldn't leave him over. I wanted to start fresh. He got rid of everything last week. Minor being hiding things he know would hurt me. That's another issue we have is we have two different deffinitions of cheating. His is "talking "seriously" to someone". I don't like that because he can be not serious and still be asking for nudes and stuff. My deffinition is going behind the other's back and doing something with another person you know will hurt your significant other, which includes flirty not serious texting, etc. I made it crystal clear I hold him to my standards, not his.

His email, his ex, my nosy brain, my broken heart

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You *don't* emulate her domineering tendencies. Okay, then that part can be eliminated from the enquiry, meaning, it's all about HIS issue, his believing that the man should wear the trousers and the woman should like it, when, as I say, it's supposed to be ONE pair of trousers, one leg each. If some people, like your dad and his mum, happen to LIKE having someone constantly in-charge of everything, across the board, because it works (hmm) for them as some sort of exception to the rule, or put up with it for the sake of whatever pluses, that still doesn't make it "the way" and demand that everyone else should likewise subvert's nature's dictats. Relationships are hard ENOUGH, without trying to outsmart nature because one stupidly thinks one's cleverer than it. So, when taking into consideration the fact of mum and dad or either/or being ones first romantic relationship (bar the sexual aspect) - the conclusion is he's not over his 'exes' yet and still believes he'd be better off with the 'devil' set-up he knows. You're not the devil he knows so, *because* he likes you, he's been trying to SHOEHORN you into that mindset and role. (Hah, good luck with that, pal, if you want to have to learn the hard way!) "He literally said "I don't know why I sent those to myself. I have no reason." when I asked him." ROFL! Are you dating Shaggy? (...'But she caught me on the counter (It wasn't me) Saw me bangin' on the sofa (It wasn't me) I even had her in the shower (It wasn't me)...';) He can't get away with that dumb act. And neither does it take hours, days or weeks to self-analytically explore amongst all the possible reasons out there re why one might have done something (assuming one truly doesn't know, that is); it takes minutes, sometimes seconds. "Then he went on a pitty party rant on how horrible it is to be forgetting stuff all the time." Oh, he has ALTZEIMER'S. Gosh, if you'd known that you might have passed, eh! [rolls eyes] "He got rid of everything last week." GOOD! He can spew nonsense with his mouth as much as he likes but, at least he's doing the right thing, finally, with his feet. His mouth will probably follow later on. Don't forget to say thank-you (you gotta give the carrot as well as the stick), in which case, likewise, don't forget you owe him a turn at getting his way at something. You can box clever and even SAY so as you pick some old unresolved contention to acquiesce over as a 'return gift'. The trick is to make it something he's been nagging on and on about. That way his mind will join the dots: Heyyy! If I back down on X, I in fact end up the winner because I get XXX back - cool! (It's *not* XXX, it just FEELS it to him. That's the encouragement trick.) "My deffinition is going behind the other's back and doing something with another person you know will hurt your significant other, which includes flirty not serious texting, etc. I made it crystal clear I hold him to my standards, not his." Your definition *is* "the definition". His is called twisting and exploiting those rules. But, whatever, now he knows EXACTLY where he stands on that score. WELL DONE! Mission accomplished! 10/10! And I've softened a bit towards him, as well, because despite he tries it on, it DIDN'T, actually, take that much to make him acquiesce (plus the red-eyed bit which *now* we know was indeed genuine). Keep me posted from here. And keep UP that current (secret, subtle) vigilance (including in his mobile for his 'no big deal' incoming texts) in terms of monitoring moods, noises and movements. It's the extent that should have been secretly running all along, anyway. You can float off with the Honeymoon fairies once all his good and/or you-suiting behaviour becomes a hard-grained habit and there's no more pimping (on either side) to be done. Work first, THEN play. Makes the play much more satisfying and enjoyable anyway. I say 'either side' but, like you intimated with 'my standards, not his': Course. Men need their rough edges honed off FAR more than the ladies, anyway (who've been relationship-trained properly already) (most of them). And it's a wise man who appreciates that and doesn't resist stubbornly because - psych fact - married men and men in long-term relationships live significantly longer than singletons, suffer far less ill health, and are all-round that much happier (with a higher libido and sperm count....I could go on). Also, 75% more men than women commit suicide after the break-up of a serious relationship. (Hear that, lads? Stick to being bosses in your *own* domains; the rest is about compromise. Female-level boundaries of relationship etiquette are 'health food', whereas macho stubbornness and resistance costs lives. ...Yours! ...one way or the other. ;-)) Anyway, aside from the tangibles and wrinkles, what about his actual emotional investment in you - has it increased, lately? Seen any change in attitude and the way he treats you or talks to you, both in situation normal as well as bickerings? I mean, we have the (rapid-reaction, TICK!) day trip (to show you off to that 'someone';) - that's the first one. But anything since? Oh and PS: you might, in a quiet moment, want to tell him that if he fears you ending up 'like your mother' (and him having to live forever more like that thanks to splitting up and detachment being out of the question courtesy of overly powerful chemistry), then he'd best cease altogether behaving towards you like your father for too long *used to* towards her as resulted in her ending up that way towards him and loathe to ever give him an opportunity to turn *back* those tables. ;-) If you're GOING to be stuck permanently like glue then you might as well make sure both sides of that one, glued entity can be kept happy, because - if you're unhappy, so will he be, and if he's unhappy, so will you be. I expect he is happier, though. Because, unfair power divvying attempt aside, now he has proof you really do care - LONG-TERM. ;-)

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B-12