How do you move on?

Discussion in 'General Advice' started by TheScandinavian, Mar 8, 2017.

  1. TheScandinavian

    TheScandinavian Well-Known Member

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    So there's this woman that has a huge influence on me. We dated for like 6 months and broke up in December 2013. We had some storyline again back in early summer of 2016. She got married to a guy. She's a lesbian, still in the closet and that's the reason why we broke up (that and the fact that it was a secret from everyone).

    After her, I've had 1 extremely successful relationship with another ex (and now we're best friends and live together as well as take care of a dog) and a recent break up with another girl. Problem is, whenever I date, I see this ex that I dated back in 2013.

    I can stay away as much as possible-it's not easy since we live in a small town, the country itself is quite homophobic and conservative etc. We often work together so I'm forced to put on a smile and pretend to be happy for her. I can succeed in that but I can't stop wanting her...

    It's been so long and am dying to actually move on because it's clear that things won't ever happen; going abroad to a more lgbt friendly country is not an option for now so I am stuck in here ("here" in Southeastern Europe). I long to feel relief when I look at her. So, my question is-how do you move on?
     
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  2. greylin

    greylin Well-Known Member

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    I think if you were my niece, I would go on the protective and try to tell you to stay away from things that worry you and hurt you. I know from experience avoiding something is the easier way to go. But I know it is not always possible.

    I think sometimes even when you can avoid things on the physical, you can't do it in your head. Because the more you tell yourself not to think about it, the more you do. I am not the kind that say what doesn't break you makes you stronger, but I am kinda saying that now. Sayings don't always apply neatly into each situation. In your situation, I feel perhaps you just need to confront your feelings and mourn her as much as you can and see what is it that hurts you the most about not having her. I know from the times I do manage to confront things within me, it does help give me clarity and put me on a path to the kind of companionship I do want to have. And even for the long time before the path took me to someone else, I was able to understand people and their feelings more. It is not so much the experience has made me stronger, but it has added to me being whole and my journey more real.

    And, I feel ya. I still run into that long-lost-whatever and go, oh man, that could have been something, but at least now, I have that bubbly champagne toast in my head tipping towards the long-lost-whatever going, "Thanks for making that intersection in my life and thanks for the way you had moved me. It's been great, sad and glorious, so cheers."
     
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  3. lorienczhiu

    lorienczhiu Well-Known Member

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    Everybody dwells a little. I am super married and happily moved on from my first few relationships, but I still think about them from time to time. I've had imaginary conversations with them, or imagined what it might be like to be with them now, or mourned that they didn't work out. There is a reason we fall for everyone we do, and the relationship being over and past does not mean that those reasons lose their appeal or their power (even as we have more recent and relevant reasons to move forward).

    So I think the thing to do is to see that feeling honestly. Don't fight it, and don't try to suppress it; go for a kind of detached interest. "Huh, when I think about Ex my stomach lurches and my mind wanders. That's a funny feeling, and it'll be over in a minute." Or, "When I see her, I always remember that one day. That was a good day, and I'm glad it happened. Back to today, though." This is how I deal with chronic pain and anxiety: I see this feeling, I am letting this happen, and now I am letting it go. It has the advantage of taking some of the power away from those feelings, and diminishing the struggle and intensity of interactions with Ex.

    You also... don't have to smile and be happy for her. It is okay to not fawn over other people's weddings or news, and to say, "Oh, congrats. Now, about this project..." without participating in the cooing etc. (For real, I used to leave my office when people started up with the pregnancy talk, because I found it irritating.) In the US (and, I imagine, everywhere in the world!) women are socialized to be nice and grin and bear it and put up with unpleasant, dull, or offensive conversations to be nice, but honestly, the world will not end if you decide to be merely cordial and not super friendly with this person. So that's something to think about.
     
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