I was in an on/off sexual relationship with a guy for (I’m embarrassed to admit) five years. Never dated. Just sex. I wanted a relationship, but never got one. (My own fault. I should’ve cut off the sex.) Either he wanted out, or I wanted out, but we always came back together. His pursuit of me was relentless. I had a bad case of unrequited love, and lost myself somewhere along the way, unable to get out even though it was destroying me. Seems like he would date anyone but me. I felt trapped, and I’d done it to myself.
It ended because his current girlfriend intercepted a Facebook message I sent him in response to a booty call, telling him he’d have to choose her or me. (I had changed my phone number, so he couldn’t contact me, so he used Facebook.) Shit hit the fan. I wanted to tell her from the beginning that he was screwing both of us at the same time, but didn’t because of bad advice received. Come to find out from her, they had been living together for months, and were talking about marriage. I never thought they were serious because his relationship with me didn’t change; it was as it had always been. The biggest insult of all was to find out he constantly trashed my name to anyone who’d listen. (He said terrible hateful awful things about me.)
I was stupid. I know that. Why would he use me for sex for five years, while he looked for Mrs. Right, when he knew I wanted to be with him? And why once he supposedly found Mrs. Right, did he not end things with me? The sex was great. He begged for it at times. But he didn’t need me. He had/has her.
Lost and Found
Dear Lost and Found,
We’re sorry. We know it’s difficult to feel discarded, as if you were some object he no longer had use for. That said, you have to stop berating yourself. You’re not the only woman, or person, who’s allowed themselves to be in this type of situation. Yes, your arrangement with this man wasn’t the healthiest of choices, but it happened, and now you need to learn from it and move on, as difficult as that may be. Keep in mind, just by reaching out to us, shows strength and the ability to self-reflect, both qualities that will help you to keep evolving.
Before we address your man’s role, let’s talk about yours. When it became pretty clear that he didn’t want more than sex, what made you stay? (Obviously, you’re already reflecting on this point.) In general, do you have self-esteem issues? (We have to ask because that’s important for you to think about, otherwise, the same sort of situation could arise again and again in your future relationships.)
In this relationship you gave up your power of choice. If you don’t address the reasons behind your actions, your loss of choice could easily manifest in your future relationships. It might not be sex the next time, but it will be something else. In general, the power in relationships needs to be somewhat balanced. Sure, one person naturally will take the lead and be the primary decision maker, but the other person can’t just be a passenger; they have to be able and willing to assert themselves when things become too unbalanced. Unbalanced relationships eventually lead to resentment—on both sides—conflict, heartbreak and sometimes abuse.
Now to your question. Why would he string you along like this?
We don’t know the guy so we can only make an educated guess. It’s likely pretty basic. He wanted sex. You were a willing partner. In his mind he had the perfect situation. He could have sex without putting much effort into it, which gave him the freedom to put his energy into finding someone he wanted to marry. We know, pretty awful when put like that, but it is what it is.
We know you have strong feelings for this man but keep in mind that not only did he use you for sex, he also cheated on his fiance, and possibly other women he was with while he was still sleeping with you. It’s going to be difficult for him to change because it seems all the women he’s been with have accepted his behavior. Ask yourself if this is the kind of man you want to be with? We know you’re looking for answers to explain why he would do something like this, but sometimes logic isn’t in play. He did what he did because he could, and because he was okay with doing it.
The takeaway. First, you need to understand your role. Try to understand the driving force behind your behavior. (Have you thought about talking to a professional? Therapist. Counselor. No shame in seeking answers.) Once you do, it’s likely you’ll make better choices in the future.
Take care of yourself. We wish you all the best.
ps. Please let your friends know about us. Also, if you have follow-up questions, or want to respond to us, leave all comments in the comments section below. We see all comments, since we have to approve them, and we respond to all comments that aren’t SPAM.