I love him, but what if that isn’t enough?

Hi Guys,

I’ve been with my boyfriend for a year-and-a-half now. I love him so much and I’d do anything for him! I was cheated on in my last relationship after seven-and-a-half years, and I think I bring a lot of baggage from that relationship to this one. From the start I always felt I wasn’t enough for him and wondered how I could I ever keep this fantastic man!

After a year with my new man I felt so much more relaxed and settled; I was happy! We decided to buy a house together and are moving in two weeks. But just over a month ago I found a chat he was having with another girl on his computer. He said he had split up with his girlfriend and just needed a friend. As the conversation went on, it turned more sexual and he asked her if he could pick her up for a cuddle. She said she couldn’t and the conversation ended shorty after that. But now all I can think about is how I’m not enough and will never be enough!! I talked to him about it and he said he was so sorry and that he loved me more then he could ever explain. He said he never wanted to hurt me and would never ever put me in that position again! He also said he would never of gone through with it and was just lonely and bored and he knew she would say no!

I do love him more than anything in the world and I have forgiven him and I know that he loves me. But what if it happens again? I love him far too much to lose him and don’t think I could handle/cope with the fall out! I’m still not sure if I’m this hurt because of what he did or if it’s more my baggage from my ex? But I’m getting to the point of feeling lost without him and scared when he’s not there. I’m terrified all the time, and I can’t/don’t want to talk to anyone about this. If I tell my friends/family all this, they will blame my new fella. But I love him and I don’t want to break up with him and I can’t stand feeling this lost.

Please help. Any thoughts are welcome. I’m well aware that I will have a lot of people saying I should dump him, but it’s not that easy!


Dear Hannah,

Thanks for your question. What he did should make you pause to consider what you’re doing? What he did—if it is a one-time thing—is not necessarily grounds for a breakup, but it’s certainly something that you shouldn’t brush under the carpet. (He certainly was doing something behind your back.) A full-blown betrayal? Maybe, maybe not. But certainly an attempt at a betrayal. His excuse, “I was bored and I knew she would say no,” is no excuse. He had no idea she would say no. He was just lucky she did. So the question is: What makes you think you can trust him?

What jumps out at us is your willingness to accept his behavior and move forward. You talk about how devastated and lost you’d be if the two of you split up, but what about being in a relationship with a guy who cheats on you? You think you’d be devastated if the two of you split, but that feeling will be nothing compared to how you might feel down the road. So we’re strongly suggesting you DO NOT move in with him until this is resolved. We highly recommend seeing a couple’s counselor.

The other thing that worries us is your self-esteem. Instead of being incensed by his betrayal, your first reaction was to immediately start worrying about whether or not you will be enough for him. That’s the mark of low self-esteem, and something you need to take a look at. If you’re telling him you’d be lost without him, that’s a lot of pressure for him. He has to worry about his feelings and yours. And what this does is create an imbalance of power in your relationship. Basically, he’s got all the power and you’ve got none. And most people have a hard time wielding this type of power. Usually they end up cheating, mistreating, or even abusing the other person. We strongly recommend you look into seeing someone—a professional— yourself to help you work through why you’re so scared to be alone. We acknowledge that it’s not easy being alone, but also understand that it’s worse being in a lonely relationship. And if you’re with a guy that you can’t trust, that is a lonely existence.

This is a lot to consume. What do you think? We’d like to hear your thoughts? Do you have any follow-up questions for us? Ask away.

Finally, we hope you’ll share our site with all of your friends. Or on Facebook, Twitter. @TGPBuzz

Take care,


24 Comments on I love him, but what if that isn’t enough?

  1. I’ve been dating a guy for a year (a year of uncertainities and plenty of breaks). Our most recent hook up seemed perfect, our chemistry is out of this world and we barely have any serious issues outside of him thinking I lack communication skills. He’s told me that over the last 3 months my communication skills have improved and that he has falling in love with me. That we still have an issue in accountablity and solving our arguments and that he does not want to deal with that.

    I’m heartbroken because for the first time, I feel like I’ve lost the one. Now he says we cannot be friends because love won’t allow us to be platonic. I really miss him and I was wondering what’s the best approach to getting him to at least communicate with me without there being a fight.

    If he really loves me, should I give him space to miss me? Will he come back again?

  2. @Becky……We need more information here Becky. What kind of communication issues have you been having? Were you exclusive for a year? How many breaks? Etc. Thanks. And then we’ll get back to you.

  3. We had one break-up prior to this one so two in total. The first break-up happened because he said he was not ready for an exclusive relationship. A month later we got back together and became exclusive. In terms of communication he said that I’ve progressed in opening up to him but I still lack the ability to be as transparent as he needs me to be, For example, instead of confronting him when something I find small and petty bothers me, I usually just take time and space to myself to get over it. Or like if we argue, which I hate, I will just act as if nothing happened moments later not wanting to talk about it because it really frustrates me to fight with him and I find it exhausting when we’ll just make up later. He says that’s a sign of me ignoring his complaints or not being accountable for how he feels about situations.

  4. @Becky…….These seem to be solvable issues. The fact that you both are even discussing communication is a very positive sign. So what comes to mind for us is: Is he just using your communication style as a convenient excuse for the break up? Because we don’t see that as an issue that would break people apart. We think there’s more going on here and he’s just not telling you the real reasons. Sure, fighting is exhausting, but it sounds like that wasn’t more than most couples. So we come back to his initial stance: He wasn’t ready for an exclusive relationship. He’s likely still in that place. Or possibly, not ready for an exclusive relationship with you. So we think you need to get to the bottom of what’s really going on before you proceed with a plan of action. What do you think? (Could you talk about this with him?)

  5. He ran the I love you too much to just be your friend line on me. Aside from some arguments post break-up he refuses to communicate with me. So should my plan of action be giving him the space he needs yet again?

  6. @Becky……That seems to be your only plan of action unfortunately. Although, we’re not feeling optimistic. This just feels like a lot of work. More than is required typically. Hang in there and keep us posted.

  7. I surely will. I was combatting with my mind if I should still give him the birthday gift I have for him or not. Thanks for the advice. To earned my donation 🙂

  8. @Becky……You’re welcome. Take care. And come back anytime. Thanks for sharing our site with friends.

  9. brandihamstra // November 24, 2012 at 2:44 pm //

    well where can I start off I’m 17 and I was with this guy for almost two years. and everything was perfect.then one day he picked me up for school, we had lunch at my house, and he dropped me off and everything was fine. then three hours later i get a phone call saying he needed to figure himself out and that we needed to break up because it was the only way he could do that. I’m crushed because it was so random like there were no signs. so he dropped my stuff off (because when we were together we spent nearly everyday and every weekend together)and we kinda talked a bit and i asked him if there was any hope for us and he said thathe didnt know what he wanted. so then today he forgot to give back one of my coats so he dropped that off after school i asked him if he lost feelings for me and he said i just dont know if i want a relationship right now. and ive messaged him saying that ill leave him alone and that when hes ready to talk ill be there cause id rather a friendship than nothing..are we going to get back together, like is it truly that he doesnt know what he wants or is he just saying that to save the hurt? and how can i win him over again cause i believe that this relationship is worth too much to throw it away like this and im willing to do anything.

  10. @Branihamstra…….We’re sorry. We know this is really difficult. Honestly, it sounds like he’s trying to soften the blow by saying he’s not sure that he wants to be in a relationship. He thinks he’s helping matters but he’s just prolonging the pain for both of you. We wish we could spin this more positively but from what you’re telling us, he’s been thinking about this for a long time, and trying to get up the nerve to tell you. That’s why it seems so sudden to you, and random.But it’s not. The person being broken up with often feels blindsided, when actually, the other person has been contemplating it for months. As far as winning him over again. You can try, but there’s really nothing you can do. If he doesn’t come to his senses and realize what a great girl you are, and that he’s in love with you, it really doesn’t matter what you do. He’s got to come back on his own. Our gut tells us he’s already decided he wants to move on. But he may string this out a while. We are truly sorry. Your thoughts? And feel free to ask as many follow-up questions as you’d like. ps. We hope you’ll share our site with all of your friends. Thanks. Hang in there. Finally, take the time to help a fellow reader. Please VOTE on our Ask our Audience page.

  11. Hey guys. So I went out with this guy for about two months and he broke up with me about 4 weeks ago. Now, I’m going to give you a little info on his previous relationships. The last girlfriend he had he was so into. He loved her immensely and she hurt him pretty badly by sleeping with three other people. Supposedly that messed him up a lot, which is understandable. I also found out I’m the only girlfriend he’s ever had that never cheated on him. His breaking up with me came as a total shock. He seemed so happy with me. He even said so he right before breaking up with me. Something like “I’ve been thinking. We’re really happy together. At least I am.” And then he left. He said it was because he’d thought he was ready for a relationship but that it had turned out he wasn’t. Said it really had nothing to do with me, which is a bit ridiculous, because of course it does. But I was so happy with this guy and I really love him. I miss him like crazy. He seemed to feel the same. But I don’t see it affecting him at all. He seems completely normal. Maybe he’s just good at ignoring it but I’ve no idea. He’s stopped talking to me though. Anyway, I’m hoping to give him some space and a bit of time to figure things out for himself, and that maybe he’ll come back. What do you think the chances of this are?

  12. @Marlena…….We’re sorry. If he truly is hurt by his past relationships, then he needs time to realize that you’re different. In this case, it’s possible he could come back. But if he’s using that as an excuse, because he doesn’t see potential with you, then he won’t be back. It is possible, that he subconsciously chooses a certain type of woman, and at this point in his life he’s only attracted to that particular type of woman. (The kind that cheat) And if this is the case, he might not be ready for a woman like yourself. (Someone who is honest and faithful) This could be about timing. He might not be ready to see what he needs to see. He might not know how to choose someone who’s actually good for him. The problem is, there’s nothing you can do to convince him. He has to see it for himself. Thoughts? ps. We hope you’ll share our site with all of your friends. Follow us on Twitter; @TGPBuzz. And take a moment to help a fellow reader. Please VOTE on the Ask our Audience page. Thanks!

  13. That seems about right Honestly.It’s unfortunate but as you said there’s probably nothing I can do about it.Right now I’m trying to give him space for a while.Sometimes it’s very hard, like today. he looked about an inch away from death.It was so sad.But he never lets anyone help him, especially me.Even when we were going out.Anyhow, it seems that it goes back to that I will just have to wait a while and see.

  14. @Marlena……Hang in there and definitely keep us posted. Come back to ask another question anytime. Take care.

  15. Thanks very much.I will do so.

  16. Hey Guys,

    So my ex is back from his awesome vacation and while he was away I sent his birthday gift as I said I would. I attached a note sincerely apologizing for whatever communication issue he felt I have. Finally took accountability for the fact I may have overlooked or shutdown in situations I felt made me vulnerable. He finally spoke to me, said he appreciated the gifts and my owning up and understanding why he chose to split. He ended the conversation with a my sincerity and love was never in question but said he does not want to take about us and that he wants to leave things where they’re at between us. So should I give up on him? Is he really finished here?

  17. @Becky……He’s saying it in every way he can. (That you’re broken up.) And there’s not much else you can do. You’ve done what you can. It’s time to move on. If he reaches out to you, well, then you can cross that bridge when you come to it. Otherwise, it’s time to rebuild and focus on other things. We’re sorry. We know this is really hard. All we can say is, surround yourself with friends and family, and people that love you. And take care.

  18. Hey, I asked a question a while ago…and I have another.It has to do with the same guy as before.I have mostly not been talking to him, I want to give him space.he doesnt ignore me or anything he just doesnt go out of his way to talk to me.and that is somewhat okay…it makes it easier sometimes.A while ago I gave him a book I had bought him while we were going out, i had forgotten to give it to him then, so I had it be his Christmas present.The other day he texted me about how he’d been reading the book and he liked it, and that since i gave him a book i liked, he was going to do the same for me.We talked a little over text after that.and then he got high and our conversation was (obviously) much different.A lot of it was ridiculous stuff about how the room was spinning and he wanted me to come spin with him.Well then he kept telling me to come there now and that he wanted to hold me hands, and he was saying my name a lot and told me to come home to him.As i said before he was really high… and maybe he says this kind of thing to everyone.I’m probably reading into it too much.Do you think it means anything?

  19. @Marlena……More than likely it means he wanted to have sex with you that night. But if he was really high, you can’t read too much into it in general. If he doesn’t follow through now that he’s not high it definitely meant he wanted you there for a good time.

  20. I need some advice: I met this guy 10 years ago. We had children a couple months after meeting (twin sons). We weren’t dating at the time from birth until they were 5. We dated from April 2010-Sept 2011. It was a rollercoaster. He started dating a girl in Nov of 2011 and they are still together. In Oct 2012, he cheated on her w me (not full sex but mutual pleasing sexual acts). I did not know they were together still & when I found out I emailed her (he said I was crazy & just trying to break them up so she kept him & they are still together). She has been coming over now and spending the night w my sons there. My sons do not like her and have asked him not to have her around. I have just now met her last Saturday (he didn’t introduce her to me she introduced herself& he has never said her nname to me). At first he said things weren’t serious then later he said he loved her and cared about her and things were serious. He said he is not trying to hurt me and was keeping himself from crying (at least I think he was because he kept rubbing his eyes). I’m still very much in love w him. Is it really over between us? Is there any chance he could return? Does he have more feelings for me than “…I care about you as a person”? Thanks for your help. Its hard on me. I can’t get over him because he calls or text everyday but a minimum of 4 times a week. When I don’t reply or text, he becomes very conversational outside of the twins.

  21. @Michelle…..This sounds really hard and complicated. We’re sorry. We know he’s the father of your children, but we’re not quite sure why you’re still holding on to him. He’s with another woman. And he cheated on you before that. He just doesn’t seem like he’s the kind of guy you could actually build a life with outside of your kids. We feel like you’d benefit from moving on. But it’s your call. Hang in there. And once again, we’re sorry this is so difficult.

  22. Hi guys! I have been with my husband since 1997. I have been battling his “feelings” for another woman he hasn’t seen since 1992. I feel like this relationship has become toxic, which kills me because more than anything I want to be loved and have a healthy relationship.

    When we started dating he had a picture of his ex (from 6 years before) in his wallet. I told him if he wanted to continue the relationship he had to get rid of it.Also, we discussed our ex’s which he then told me they were good friends then lovers and yet decided friends was best. Not only has the picture disappeared and re appeared, he hired U.S. People Search to look for a best friend and they could not locate him so he gave them her name and they found her. Next thing I know I find a post it not with her name and number. I asked him about it and he told me they had been talking. Then I found in his email a message he sent her with basic small talk and he told her in the middle of it all she was as beautiful as the last day he seen her. He soon after got comfortable with talking to her and he was talking to her in front of me and he said honey we could move out there live with her get up on our feet and she would help us out. ( over 1500 miles away). With great anger I told him to hit the road yet he didn’t leave and stop talking to her. Later I found out she was going through a divorce. Since then she has re married. We eventually separated and after showing him proof

  23. Sorry I hit the submit button. After showing him proof I knew what was going on and that I knew he registered at dating sites he agreed to marriage counseling. We went I addressed the situation of her and he then told me he lied. They are only friends they never slept together and basically I needed to get over it. A year later we ended up back together and I told him I was making no promises. Then he found her on fb and they became friends and I requested her and she accepted. They very rarely talk and he as slowly pushed me away. Low and behold he went to show me something in his phone and poof there is that picture that had been imprinted in my brain. He said he deleted it and after many many hours of communication. I explained to him that our relationship is toxic and that he as devastated me and he admitted he still has feelings for her. Not to mention in the last couple years he has slowly stopped paying bills and only pays his car payment and our car insurance. He has admitted to being selfish and not tending to any of my needs while I suppoelrt him every way possible. My problem is I have a three year old that I have guardianship over most importantly I have to think of her health emotionally and physically. I love him but is love enough?

  24. My boyfriend and i have been dating for over a year now. Before we got together his ex girlfriend tried to stop him from talking to me and tried to keep him away from me. Since we got together its been great! He’s always there for me and treated me so special. I find out from my friends that his new job meant that he will work with his ex girlfriend. I trust my boyfriend. But with that knowledge and the fact he didnt tell me makes me unsure. Lately she has been posting on his facebook things like them having lunch breaks together. The upsetting part is i have been asking him to have his lunch breaks with me before but he would always deny and say he only has a limited time. Lately i havent been seeing his as often as i use to which makes me feel neglected but he always reassures me hes just busy working especially due to the holidays.Am i just being a jealous girlfriend or there is something wrong? like the saying if theres smoke theres fire.

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