I made big mistakes - should I still reach out

Discussion in 'Relationships' started by starfish83, Jun 19, 2020.

  1. starfish83

    starfish83 Member

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    My now ex broke up with me recently. We were together around 11 months. I thought we were great together, she would say she was happy I'm hers, we had a good balance of time together and alone time, it was very easygoing and secure, until she suffered the loss of her dad halfway through.

    We ran into a lot of problems, a lot of distance, no alone time, more her partying harder with friends, bad communication, resentment, insecurity, avoidance and anxiety - a mix from both of us. She wanted slack to do her thing (partying hard - she doesn't do emotions) so I didn't think it was good to question anything and stress her more. She also didn't want me confiding in anyone so I was stuck with this bubble of emotions that unfortunately exploded when we would be drinking. I ended up making her feel like a bad girlfriend. I was confused as to how to be her girlfriend as she said she can't do relationship things but we were still together. I felt like I wasn't good enough for her. But how I took it personal was wrong. I made it about me. Very shameful! Very selfish!

    We were actually doing really good since lockdown. She went into full isolation alone so we couldn't see each other, I was cool with it, I never complained about it and never once asked to see her, we were communicating more, we actually talked out our issues one night, I understood things more about why she did certain things like pulling away from me and prioritizing partying with friends, she was happy I was actually doing something about my feelings - it felt so good for us both, we were both happy we actually talked. I looked at myself more and worked hard on dealing with my emotions and feelings, writing stuff down, getting relationship advice online and how to feel secure in myself. I hated that I wasn't more understanding to her months ago and wish I addressed my own insecurities months ago. I've been in such a good place for myself and happy to be in a social distance relationship with her even though I miss the physical aspect, she is worth the wait.

    She asked me to come to her place one day, total social distance hangout which was fine and sweet to just be there with her. I was the first and only person she had in her apartment since lockdown so it showed she cared. There was then a misunderstanding. I asked her how she was with us, like how we were progressing and I questioned the social distancing regarding being physical between us. In my head they were just innocent questions to ask but I don't think I thought it through or worded it properly. She took offence and gave me a lecture, and I felt embarrassed and apologized, it was stupid to ask. It was good then or so I thought. A couple of days later she blew up about what I said about the social distancing. Back and fourth texts exchanged about it, I finally got her settled that I honestly didn't mean anything negative about it and it wasn't to stir up anything bad between us...but it stung her more than I thought.

    3 weeks later of her pulling back, I get the "lets be friends but I don't want to date anyone else" speech. I asked her to consider just having a break for a while - it would benefit us both. I sent her a couple of emails (only with her permission) with full on details of how I was working on me and how to make the break work. I tried to convince her that I could adapt if there were honest boundaries set. I got a text next day that she can't be in any sort of relationship right now and can only offer friendship, hoping I can respect that. I replied ok, and let her know if she needs anything I 'm here for her. She still has her grief, work pressures, other personal pressures - along with being in complete lockdown. So our relationship is the only thing she could let go.

    All I wanted was to prove to her that I could be a supportive and understanding partner and make amends for past mistakes but it's too late. In hindsight we should have sat down, expressed needs and boundaries after the first argument. I am heartbroken but accepting it and I know I'll be ok as I had been working on myself already so it's not as bad. It's still raw though. I'm not even sure if friendship is a go. The last thing I ever wanted was to be pressure on her with what she's going through. At the end of it all I messed up months ago. I wish I took a grip of myself months ago. Lesson learned. I just can't stop feeling so stupid for my insecurities, and especially asking her about social distance - I'm sure that was the trigger, the last straw, I don't think it was necessarily the question but more the stress that the misunderstanding caused her afterwards.

    So with that all in mind, fathers day is coming up, should I say something like I'm thinking about her? Before she ended things it was on my mind to say something or check in on her but now it's different, I'm not her partner. I actually don't want to initiate contact with her. I don't see it as a way to get in her good books in the hope she'll change her mind. It's just compassion for her because she was super close to him. Also when her exes contacted her when her dad passed away she wasn't impressed. I don't know if I would still be important enough to her for her to appreciate it or would she roll her eyes like she did with the others. It could also come off that I'm trying to establish instant contact, maybe an email would be less direct.

    I also just had to vent about what happened because I need as close to a real life talk to someone as possible and I can't vent too much to friends because we now have a lot of mutuals.
     
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  2. Writer23

    Writer23 Well-Known Member

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    I know you feel the urge to reach out and contact her but do not. She told you that she does not want to be in any sort of relationship right now and can only offer friendship. She also added that she hopes that you can respect that. Although well-intentioned, if you reach out to her, it might be construed as you trying to rekindle the relationship. You have to let her go and respect what she wants. if she comes to you, that is fine; however, do not go to her or contact her at all. I know that that the pain is raw and excruciating, but It will get better in time. As the saying goes, “Time heals all wounds.” You will think of her every morning when you wake up and every night before you fall to sleep. Then one day you will not. She was your normal, so it is abnormal to live without her. In time, however, your abnormal will become your normal and you will be ok.
     
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  3. greylin

    greylin Well-Known Member

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    I am really surprised what you are willing to put up with in terms of incompatibility. She parties and doesn’t do emotions, that is not the partner for you, isn’t it? 11 months is a very short time so I think you have had just enough time to find out that she is not for you and you are not for her. Please run and don’t look back. Relationships take work and understanding, it is true, but don’t put up someone who is already so triggered in your honey moon period.
     
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  4. starfish83

    starfish83 Member

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    We actually were very compatible, I still believe we could have been. I I also party lots, we both partied together with friends or sometimes separately with our own friends, we met through partying - so that was never the issue. It was never like I wanted to have the settled life of staying in, keeping it just the 2 of us all the time and never going out with friends. Like I said we had this good balance of spending time together, spending time with friends and spending time alone. It worked for us. We both are/were pretty laid back in personalities.

    The problem was that her way of coping with her dad dying was to party harder which she did warn me about. I was there the majority of the time, but what we didn't see coming was that it would mean we would be put to the back, we didn't have our date nights, and I couldn't stay overnight anymore. We were reduced to a couple of hours alone maybe once every 2 weeks. It stopped her wanting to be intimate but the last time we were intimate she broke down in tears. It was the first time I seen her cry over her dad passing away.

    I never pushed her to be emotional, I was never seeking that from her, it wasn't that I was just settling for her and accepting this is the way she is, I'm not the most emotional or open about my feelings either until I reach a certain point and end up communicating them in a volatile manner. She accused me of not being open with my feelings at one point. I felt I was being pushed away and instead of being patient I took it personal about me, I reacted in an accusing manner after nights out, thinking she didn't want to be with me. I think we developed a massive communication problem between us, neither one of wanting to sit down calmly to talk things through, until the lockdown gave us time to reflect. I realized I was starting to depend on her for my happiness which added pressure on her.

    It was all going good during lockdown until I mentioned social distancing and how she felt about us. I think it made her think that she couldn't give me what she has to offer. That definitely isn't true. The lockdown is difficult for everyone but I was very happy and content with how we were doing - it was like a timeout in a way. But I guess old tensions came back for her and stressed her out.

    I firmly believe she didn't do anything wrong. It was her way of coping with grief. I think if her dad didn't pass away or if we had a solid foundation/been together a couple of years the outcome would have been different. She is a great girl and I would never say a bad word against her.

    But you are right it was a short time and I'll have to accept its not meant to be. It stings but I know I'll be ok :)
     
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  5. starfish83

    starfish83 Member

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    Thank you. Yea you are right. I'll leave everything in her hands if she wants to reach out. It's so hard. Sometimes my mind is clear and I'm accepting its not meant to be but then there are moments where there is so much I want to say to her like to rethink things and take it slow but I have to accept what she wants. I really believe if I hadn't said those things 3 weeks ago we could have still been working on things, it just triggered negative things for her :(
     
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  6. greylin

    greylin Well-Known Member

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    Yes, you did say how things were good until her tragic loss. I should have read it more carefully. I find from your tone and your description you have treated her with the utmost care. I am guessing that she doesn’t know how to navigate this so no matter what you do could be a trigger. So I would not look at those words you said to be “big mistakes”. She is in a place that she cannot take any questions. I think she does not want any one to question her choices even in the tiniest bit. As far as whether you should initiate anything about fathers day, I think your gut is correct for not wanting to. If she is not reaching out to you like you are her friend whom she could talk to then she just might question whatever gesture you make.

    I am so sorry this happened. I am so sorry she took whatever you said so badly and it really isn’t your fault. It is just circumstance and you have been patient and kind. I hope you can put this all aside and be present with your own family this weekend. Feel free to vent here.
     
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  7. starfish83

    starfish83 Member

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    Thank you for your kind words greylin. I won't contact her as much as I wish I could tell her how sorry I am for everything, sorry that she's hurting and sorry for my actions putting pressure on her. I do want to be there for her. All I can do is accept it and get on with it.
     
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  8. Spygirl

    Spygirl Well-Known Member

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    This sounds like a relationship I was once in...always made to feel like I was selfish or I was the problem or I was walking on eggshells fearing I'd say the wrong thing. Turns out the problem wasn't mine after all -- Maybe it's the way you've written it and I'm reading this all wrong but something -- at least to me -- seems very out of balance in the way you're describing the relationship you had.

    11 months isn't a long time with someone so that it's still very much the honeymoon phase, and I don't doubt that things were once great between the two of you. However, the thing you need to respect is the here and now -- if she says don't contact her, then don't contact her no matter how hard it is not to do so.
     
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  9. starfish83

    starfish83 Member

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    I was selfish and I didn't have the patience to not take things personal. The whole situation was nothing about me. What she is going through with the death of her dad is far bigger than my stupid insecurities and our relationship. Its a heartbreak I’ve never experienced and I so wish she didn't have to go through what she is dealing with.

    I do agree there was a bit of imbalance though when it came to communicating what's happening between us. When we had our big talk about us we did agree to say what's on each others mind instead of holding anything in. I thought it was ok to ask her anything, big or small. What I asked 3 weeks ago wasn't intended to be a serious question or me accusing her of not wanting to be close to me or why she won't have sex with me but she heard it that way. I just thought it was ok to ask what the situation was with us when it comes to being physical during this time. It wasn't something we ever discussed specifically. I was stunned into silence by her lecture and stunned a few days later by her texts. So it feels to me like I'm damned if I say something, damned if I don't. I think this is why she thinks she's not enough for me and can't give me what I want. I can understand why she thought I was unhappy with her that day due to my previous insecurities on us not being intimate. I just wish I could go back to that day and shut my mouth!

    This was her choice so of course I'll leave it for her to contact if she wants. It just sucks I didn’t have this mindset or level of understanding months ago.
     
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