I’d like to understand what happened??

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I do not really see any mistake whatsoever. At least nothing serious. Just one morning I woke up in his bed and he was watching me from afar. Then he basically told me to pack up my things and leave. I was more surprised than sad, and tried to figure out what was going on. He walked me out with those heavy bags and told me that I am just not good enough, intelligent enough, charismatic enough, and there is no reason for him to be losing his time with me. I was only listening and it seemed a bit funny to me, because I do not really think I am dim or unable to express myself. He was being overly dramatic and I could see that he was trying hard to hurt me. I’ve always known he is a bit unstable, and that he is interested in different things but it was never a problem. We fought occasionally but I do not recall anything too serious. This breakup was also really out of the blue; I think it was a rather impulsive decision. Also this is not the first time; he has broken up and come back a few times already. I had no problem with that. And this breakup doesn’t even especially hurt.

But I’d like to ask: Why is that? Can you see some pattern in this rather pathetic behavior? Is there a problem with me, or does this guy need to sort himself out? He deleted me from his accounts and I was not desperate to call him/message him. I am not really sure but I have a feeling he will try to crawl back again. Maybe. Would you be so kind and play his part so I can at least understand what went wrong, and if I’m the one to blame, and will he come back? Because right now, I’m really confused. We’ve been together for two and half months, and a year before that we went out for one year and half.


Dear Hue,

Thanks for your question.

You don’t seem too broken up over your split? And if that’s true, maybe both of you are actually on the same page here. Maybe both of you realize the relationship isn’t right, and he finally decided to take action.

But let’s backtrack for a second. Breakups are often a surprise to the person getting broken up with; but the person who does the breaking up has more than likely been thinking about it for a long time. So even though you felt like your guy was being impulsive, probably he was rehearsing how it was going to go down for months.

We don’t condone the way he broke up with you. Parting barbs are never productive, and often reflect a lack of maturity. And since the two of you have a history of getting back together, we would think he’d be more careful about what he says to you. (It’s hard to take back mean words.) But why is he saying such mean things to you? It seems like there’s a lot of information or back history we’re not aware of.

We can’t say whether or not he’s unstable, but from our point of view, something seems missing from your relationship, almost as if both of your expectations are low. Why is that? We think that question is worth exploring. And related to that: You also seem very guarded. Is there a reason for that? Do you have an issue trusting him, or do you have a hard time trusting people in general?

He might come crawling back” as you say. But do you really want him back even if he does ask for forgiveness? Right now he’s out exploring the field, or dating someone else. He’s looking for someone who isn’t you. So maybe that’s what you should be doing as well. Why not put yourself back out there and try to find someone you can trust and open up to? Why not try to find someone who genuinely cares for you and who does think you’re intelligent, funny, and beautiful.

There is someone out there who will rock your world, but you have to allow them to. Being vulnerable is always a bit unnerving, but the reward can be amazing. Don’t settle for anything less.

Take care,


ps. Let your friends know about us.


8 Comments on I’d like to understand what happened??

  1. First off, thanks ahead of time for the time and thought you put into your responses. Reading through your site today has been it’s own sense of therapy for me. I love my girlfriends but there’s nothing like a guys perspective at times.

    My ex recently ended our 1.5 year relationship and while I’ve worked on coming to terms and accepting the breakup and the reasons for it, there is one area of the relationship that continues to haunt, hurt and perplex me. That area was our lack of a sex life.

    Like many others, I’ll need to provide a little history. We’re both in our 30’s, met a couple of years ago, hit it off tremendously, he quickly pursued exclusivity. After a short 2.5 months, he abruptly ended things with no explanation whatsoever. While dating, he claimed he had not met anyone since his ex-wife with whom he felt so connected, we had a good, regular sex life, our time together was easy, fun and amazing, all the ingredients for me to begin falling head over heels and I most definitely had. I learned almost immediately that he had gotten back together with an ex-gf. I confronted him on this via e-mail and his only response was to say she had children, they had dated previously, she had broken it off with him and he just wanted to be happy & close to his son.

    We lived 40 minutes from each other, I’ve never been married, no children and he seems to deal with deep significant struggles over the loss of the sense of family unit that came aong with divorce and not being able to have a daily life with his child who he sees every other weekend. His response left me feeling that he had a hole in his heart he was trying to fill with another “family”. I couldn’t compete nor did I want to. We had no contact from there on out. I worked to move on.

    10 months later, I began receiving texts from him. I very cautiously proceeded but told him unless he could answer some questions, we could not see each together. He agreed. From there, we ended up in a relationship for the past 1.5 years. I knew this relationship was a huge risk based on both how he’d gone about cowardly ending our original relationship (which he did over e-mail) as well as having been left to feel like I was perhaps his Plan B or the next best thing when the relationship with his ex-gf didn’t end up working out after all. I’m well aware that he clearly had some emotional issues, and still does. I made a choice to give it a go, I own the choice b/c I needed to see if our original connection was as incredible as it had appeared on the surface and I didn’t want to have regrets. His reason for ending things the first time around he said was because he was afraid and I was “different”, not in a bad way but I was not like other girls he’d met. He couldn’t put other words to how to explain how I was different just that I was. His ex-gf that he chose to go back to was safe, familiar, comfortable for him. We talked about it and we moved forward.

    While our relationship in the past 1.5 yrs was not without some struggles, it was as fun, easy and adventurous as I had remembered our connection was previously except…from the time he came back, he was never much into sex again. In fact, he avoided it much to my frustration and confusion. We had sex every couple of months at best. I tried to discuss this with him on a couple of occasions only to be met with excuses from him not wanting to “complicate” things (?), sex not being that important, fearing unwanted pregnancy, etc. I took a back seat and decided to let him drive that area of our relationship based on his comfort levels not wanting to push too hard. Big mistake? Perhaps. I was deeply in love with him and despite this area, there was still affection, cuddling, laughter, conversation, fun and I just prayed that whatever wall was standing between us in that area would work it’s way down as we grew as a couple. Never happened. Instead, I left the relationship feeling unwanted, undesired and unattractive. Let me make it clear, there was not a physical issue on his part in this area. When we had sex, all worked well and without problem although I felt a lack of general enthusiasm on his part some of the time but not always.

    The relationship progressed to the point of I Love You’s (words that admittedly were very difficult for him) and conversations about where we each were as people and what might become of the relationship. Just before I left on a trip, HE approached a desire to talk about our next step when I returned from travel. The next day, he suggested the idea of moving in together and buying a house to me over text. He said he had been thinking about it for awhile and wanted to bring all the areas of his life into one. He often felt he lived 2 different lives, that with me and that with his son. I felt the same way. This was huge, huge progress. He normally isolated himself on his weekends with his son and he had been working on including me in that space from time to time but it was not with a lot of regularity. His son and I got along amazingly well and even by his own admission, anytime the 3 of us were together, we always had a great time. He told me I was amazing with his son. The issue was not mine or his sons, it was very, very much his. We had openly discussed how he felt about “sharing” his son and how he struggled with this and was always upset at the end of a weekend when we all spent time together b/c he didn’t have him to himself. I was very open and understanding in making sure he had the time and space he needed with his son but also very aware that I was looking for someone to spend my life with and if he could never allow me into that part of his world, it would never work in the long term. I was shocked, impressed, excited, happy, scared all at the same time at the idea of us taking this step in our relationship. I also had alot of questions to go along w/ that conversation though. Our sex life was at the top of that list.

    That conversation never happened. He never brought it up again. I intentionally waited to see if he would. Two months later, while feeling stressed about his life, finances, job change, he shut down. I knew the shut down was coming b/c he told me so. He was stressed, had a full plate, needed space to think and was leaving town the next morning but also promised we were good, I didn’t need to worry, it wasn’t about us. All words he gave me that I never even asked for so I stepped back, gave him space and initially felt the first couple days I had no reason to worry. He broke up with me shortly after.

    His reasons: He was stressed out, he is a shitty boyfriend, he liked being in a relationship but he liked being single, he was close to a certain age and felt he had “nothing”, he didn’t want to share his son, he was fearful I wanted kids of my own (not true – I accepted his son with my whole heart but did want the feeling of “family” which would require being part of his life with his son but he didn’t seem to believe me), then the kicker…he loved me to death, would do anything for me but “didn’t know” if he was in love with me. I’m the most awesome woman he’s met. He couldn’t stop thinking abou how awesome I was after the first time we dated. Oh, and as it turns out, sex IS important he says and he’s felt like an asshole every time he leaves my place and would think “I can’t believe she is still keeping me around”. Wow, wow, that one hurt and was like a huge slap in the face.

    He wants to be friends. He wanted to take me out to eat afterwards, make a project for me still that was in the works, doesn’t want to take his stuff from my place, he’ll get it later. I handle myself with class but tell him I just don’t know that friendship’s an option, I don’t have an answer, have alot to process nor do I want confusion or strings of hope running through me. I send him a text later thanking him for his honesty, it was all stuff I needed to hear. He replies that it’s tough for him not knowing if he’s making the right decision. Double whammy. So I tell him he did make the right decision and before we had broken up, I had prayed for strength to break up with him when it became clear he couldn’t love me the way I needed and deserved to be loved.

    Despite my love and heartbreak, I see all the things that simply could not work for us the way the relationship was existing and I know he did me a huge favor by breaking it off.

    But I am devastated and perplexed by our lack of a sex life. I am still trying to come to grips with the idea that for 1.5 years I was laying next to a man who apparently didn’t want me or desire me physically? Does a man stay in a relationship for that long with a woman he’s not attracted to and doesn’t want sex with? Yet who had clearly found me attractive and wanted me that way the first time we dated. Does attraction simply wane that way and cease to exist? Or did he just intentionally never let it regrow due to his own emotional fears, insecurities, and issues? I tried to ask him for a more direct reason for the lack of sex in our final talk and he just said he loved being with me but his feelings just weren’t the same, he tried. A man who gave me I Love You’s, at times completely unprompted by me, which were lies in my opinion. I think we can all recognize that in the context of a relationship, when you choose to put those words out there, you are very clearly telling that person I am IN LOVE with you. Otherwise, they just shouldn’t be said yet at all. It hurts, a lot.

    I’ve kept my distance, we’ve only seen each other once so I could give him his things but he texts me weekly with random thoughts, questions, pictures or jokes, wants to lend me things of his, wanted to know that I made it safely to and home from a long road trip I took, wants to go to a concert we planned on going to b/c we both love the music and he had promised his son we were going. I love him and hate him all at once for caring at all about these things.

  2. @Kasey……We’re sorry this is so confusing and difficult. We also think he did you a favor by breaking up with you because you were compromising too much to be with this man. (Sex, possibly having a family of your own.) That’s what love can do, and clearly you were—or are—in love with this man. But love can grow quickly into resentment and anger if some important needs aren’t being met. A great sex life, or at least a good sex life, is an important facet of any relationship. Some people may not need it as often as others, but it’s such an easy and fun way to connect, and/or reconnect with the person you love. Certainly for many guys it’s the way they like to connect with the woman they love. Before we continue let’s be clear about his behavior. As hard as his lack of interest feels to you, this is more about him than you. Most guys just want sex after they get divorced. The thought of getting attached again is the last thing on their mind. In fact, most guys do everything they can to make up for lost time by attempting to bed as many women as they can. However, if their relationship was bereft of any sort of affection or emotional connection some guys just want to know they’re desirable again. We suspect your guy falls into this camp. You’ve made him feel whole again as he reels from the loss of his family unit, and attempts to put the pieces of his life back together. He’s experiencing extreme sadness—probably depression—from the loss of seeing his son on a daily basis. (We don’t blame him.) And depression as you know can seriously impact libido. He’s also trying to rebound from a relationship that probably was deteriorating for some time. We don’t know exactly what happened but we’d bet that he didn’t get much of his needs met on many levels. (Maybe she didn’t either.) So, the guy you’ve been dating, did not come to you as a whole and happy person, more full of holes, holes that you’ve been trying to fill. The problem is, you’ve sacrificed much to fill his holes; we think too much. So that’s something for you to look at. Is he really that amazing, or is this a pattern for you? (Being with guys that need help. We’re just putting it out there. Something to ponder.) Let us reassure you that he does love you, but from the start he needed a friend, he needed support, he didn’t need a romantic relationship. You did. And there’s the issue. It’s not that you’re not attractive, it’s just that you two are in different places in your lives. Most of what he has to give he’s going to give to his son. And well he should. But that doesn’t leave much for you. Sure, maybe he was fun, and you shared some good times, but he’s benefited more from this relationship than you have. You deserve more, and you should have more from the man you love. You should be getting as much as you’re giving. He’s not able to do this, and so yes, as sad as it may be, it’s time to move on. Which brings us to our final point: It’s selfish of him to keep contacting you, and it’s not good for you. It’s time to cut ties and start being open to new possibilities. (When you’re ready of course.) If he truly cares for you he’ll understand and respect your requests. We hope this helps. What do you think? Feel free to ask as many follow up questions as you’d like. We may not have touched upon every question. And take care of yourself.

  3. I’ve been beating myself up over possibly saying too much too soon to a guy I was seeing.

    About a month and a half into dating with consistent communication and dates, he asked me to tell him stuff about myself that my friends didn’t know about me.  I said that I had taken antidepressants a few years ago for a few months.  I said it was low dose and I don’t know if it did anything for me.  He asked if it was from when I broke up with my ex of three years and I said yes.  He said he couldn’t imagine me fighting with anyone and I told him my ex would get mad at me every 1-2 weeks.  I would try to defend myself and it would lead to a fight.  I said since this was one of the few guys that showed interest in me and I was already in my mid 20s I thought he was the best I could do, but now I know I could do better.   (My self esteem has improved since then) He asked if I thought I would marry my ex and I said yes, but I also thought we might get divorced.  He asked what I thought about divorce and I said I hope it doesn’t happen to me, but it does happen sometimes.  He said he doesn’t like fighting and I said I don’t either.  I said some people toId me my ex was emotionally abusive and the guy said a lot of people say that when there’s a breakup.  I told him the other time I took meds was also a low dose a few years ago for a few months for a family related situation. I went into more detail about it with him.

    Another thing I told him was that I get really quiet around big groups of new people and that being quiet is something I don’t like about myself. I said I don’t like when I talk to someone and they say I’m quiet even though I’m making an extra effort to talk.  He said it just depends on how you react to the situation and I said it happens when i meet someone for the first time and they say that.  He said he gets quiet too around new people. I told him sometimes when i talk to him on the phone and it gets quiet i feel like i have to think of something to say. He said it was ok, that sometimes he’s quiet when he gets tired and he was quiet growing up. I was trying to open up to him but now I so regret telling him what I did and wish I had not said anything.

    A short time after we had this conversation I felt like things changed between us. Also, around this time there were two occasions he wanted to have sex, but I wasn’t ready so I told him I wanted to wait a few weeks. I realize there could be many reasons why he lost interest besides what I told him and not having sex with him, but did I say too much too soon? Would just the personal things I told him scare him off or cause him to lose interest? Thanks for your help!

  4. @Allie…..So why was he asking you in the first place, especially if he knew he wouldn’t be able to handle the answer? You did nothing wrong. He asked and you told him. He showed his true colors by handling this the way he did. If he indeed lost interest it wasn’t because you denied him sex, it was because of the other stuff you told him. (How old is this guy?) That said, we do think the next time a guy asks you something like this you just omit most of this. It’s frankly none of his business. What happened in the past is the past. People think that they need to tell their spouse/partner everything, but that’s simply not true. Yes, there are many things your partner is entitled to know, but confiding about taking medication for a very difficult situation is not one of them. Your thoughts? ps. We hope you’ll share our site with all of your friends. Thanks. We appreciate it.

  5. Thank you for the reply. The guy is in his early 30s. I feel like such an idiot and that I ruined everything by revealing too much. I’m so mad at myself. Of all the things I could have said instead, I don’t know why I said what I did. What exactly about the stuff that I told him would cause him to lose interest? Was it because it made me look weak? Also, why do you think it was what I said vs. sex?

  6. @Allie…..First of all, stop beating yourself up. Here’s what you’re not seeing. If it wasn’t now, it would be later. This guy was not the one for you. Maybe he had some great qualities, but the fact that he ran the other way when you revealed about your life is telling of his character. Do you really want to build a life with a guy you can’t trust with your innermost feelings? We doubt it. As per your questions. It is possible it was about the sex, but we tend to doubt it. We think he’s insecure and it bothered him that you were so distraught over your ex. Your difficulties make him feel inferior to your ex. Like somehow, your ex was your ultimate guy and no one else will be able to compare. His loss. ps. We’re surprised at his age. We thought he was younger. We’d think by the mid-30s he’d be beyond this sort of reaction. Keep us posted.

  7. Hmmm, I kind of understand your reasoning, but kind of don’t. I don’t think I made it sound like my ex was some great guy-I even said he was emotionally abusive. How does that come across as him being the ultimate guy that no one can compare to? He was just my first long term relationship and my self esteem wasn’t that great back then leading me to be more distraught.

  8. @Allie…..Well, that wasn’t completely clear to us. (You said, some people told you your ex was emotionally abusive.) Since that’s hard to decipher from our perspective since we don’t know the ins and outs, and fighting and abuse are sometimes the same and sometimes not, we chose to focus on what this new guy’s possible reaction was. Here’s his perspective: 1. You dated the guy for three years. (Something about him must have been attractive beyond just the fact that he liked you. Three years is a long time. He can only surmise you were into him.) 2. You liked someone who didn’t always treat you well. (He’s wondering, “Why would she do that?”) And your reason—low self-esteem wasn’t the answer he was hoping for…….Of course we completely understand that people don’t always choose the best relationships for themselves. We also understand that people need to go through some hard times to grow. You’ve done that and should feel very good about yourself for moving past it, and learning from it. Honestly Allie, we still think this new guy’s got some sort of insecurity issues. Whether it’s about your ex, your past, your choices, whatever, we just don’t think you should completely blame yourself for giving him the answers he asked for. We’ve seen this so many times before. If it wasn’t this issue, he’d have a major problem with something else you did, or told him, or whatever. We hope this clarifies our position a little. Hang in there and take care of yourself.

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