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I’ve been in an off and on relationship for the last eight years. It’s been more on than off until the last year and a half or so and then our “breaks” have lasted a month or two. Every time we split it seems to be something different, but it’s always the same pattern. I think he’s running away from any problems or conflicts we have instead of staying and communicating about it. He pushes me away and says the most hurtful things when we’re ending, and then always comes back and apologizes and says he never meant them, and just needed space to think about what he really wanted.
This most recent time —about a month ago— was the final straw for me. Everything was going well, and then out of nowhere he told me that he needed time to think about whether he was ready to settle down and commit. I asked him if that’s what it really was or if he was interested in another woman. (This has been a problem in the past.) He assured me that it was just pure confusion. This conversation was the last I heard from him.
This week I found out that he’s been seeing someone new for the last 3-4 weeks and thats she’s pretty much living with him in his newly built house that he’s been promising was “ours” the entire time it was being built. He finished it up, ended things with me, and moved in with this new girl.
So then why include me in all the decisions, and talk about kids and puppies if you were never planning on me being there? Why can’t guys just say what they want? If he didn’t want to be with me, why did he keep dragging me in and out of this? I know I played a part in it because I let it happen, but still, does he not have a conscience? Why just disappear for a month without saying I’m finished, and want to move on? Why do guys start new relationships so quickly, if this is even a relationship? Is she a fling or the real deal?
She’s quite a few years younger and I feel like if he’s not ready to commit she’s the perfect escape because she won’t be expecting that yet, and nobody will be pressuring him to settle down with her now. But I don’t get her living with him except for the convenience of a booty call. I’m crushed over this and he doesn’t even seem to care at all. Is he really that heartless and cruel or is this how all guys handle breakups? It seems so cruel and not human to act like this to someone you supposedly cared about for so long and were telling that you love them up until the end.
I know what I need to do at this point but just wanted some insight into what I feel are extremely confusing incidents and actions on his part.
Thanks for writing to us.
We’re sorry you’re going through such a difficult time right now. No one deserves to be treated the way you were treated, but betrayal happens more than you’d expect. And when a person is betrayed by a loved one the hurt is even deeper.
People observing from the outside usually see it coming–this would include family and friends. And honestly, we’re kind of surprised you didn’t see this whole scenario unfolding. Sure, love is blind, and blinding, but after a tumultuous eight years—one filled with many indiscretions on his part: other women—you had to know it wasn’t going to end well.
Guys are certainly guilty of their share of bad break ups but not all guys are like that. It sounds like your guy was already an established cheater, or at least a meanderer, so it only makes sense that his dishonest, and uncaring streak continued with the break up. If he was pursuing other women during the time you were together, he certainly would have no problem making you promises, only to break them later. And the fact that he says hurtful things to you when you separate each time is also a major red flag and a good indicator he’s not someone you can trust.
You say you know what you need to do, but there’s more to think about than moving beyond this relationship. Going forward you need to think about what kept you in this relationship for so long, and how that thinking impacts your next relationship. Because eight years is a long time to put up with uncertainty, indecision, and lies. You don’t want to fall into the same pattern the next time around.
We have faith that you will grow from this sadness, and be a stronger person for it. Break ups are painful, even when people believe it’s the right decision. Hang in there. And know that this man, and this relationship, was not right for you.
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