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BTrade posted 9/26/2013 11:27 AM

I am a selfish SI member. I've been gone a long time and I'm only here now because I feel like I need a place to get some understanding. I'm not looking for any 2x4's but I may get some.

I've been divorced for 2 years. My ex married the OM 5 months after our divorce was finalized.

I dated too soon and I was hurt by it. I got over it and began looking towards the future. I tried online dating and didn't meet anyone. I decided to keep my standards high and not jump into a relationship for convenience.

I met someone. Much younger than me. She pursued me, we had a friendship for several months that finally turned romantic when I kissed her. We had a seemingly fantastic open and honest relationship. I knew that they May-December model was unlikely to last forever, so I treated the relationship like a real treasure, enjoying things as I could, and making special efforts to show I cared. I did all the things I wish I had done in my marriage. We were pretty much inseparable when I didn't have my kids, and she did get to meet them also (please - I feel bad enough - don't tell me what a mistake that was). This girl knew how much she was loved, and she seemed to reciprocate it. But there were signs things weren't perfect. Although I was introduced to all of her friends, I was not introduced to her family. I was ok with that because I figured it would take some getting used to for anyone to see their daughter with an older guy. (The more I write about this the more pathetic I am feeling, BTW).

She went away for the weekend to spend time with her family. It's the last time I spoke to her and the last time I saw her. She texted me about needing space and a break. Said she doesn't want to date anyone else and that her life needs to be fixed before she can love me the way I would want her to. I should mention here that I was aware she has had some anxiety issues in the past where she took medication. She lost her job because of a DUI arrest and the subsequent job offer she received was rescinded when they found out about the DUI. I know she was depressed.

So she says we need a break and that she's got to get her life straight, and that she still loves me and loves spending time with me, etc. Throughout the relationship she said I was the best boyfriend ever and was perfect. I certainly attempted to be. Her current actions don't match the words. And I'm hurt because I believed her when she told me she loved me.

I'm NC for a week. I started out full of confidence knowing that I had done everything I could to be the best partner I could be. I was very happy in the relationship and was blindsided by it's abrupt end.

Now I'm going through many of the same abandonment issues that I felt when my XW left.

I came here looking for a few kind thoughts that might help me shed a tear or two. Feeling fragile and not wanting to hear what I already know....that a 42-year old man should know better than to date a girl in her 20's. We had "the talk" about that and never in our time together did it seem to be an issue. She didn't hesitate to go out in public with me, so I don't think (but also don't know) if that played a big factor.

What I do know is that I feel like a fool for letting myself get hurt by someone again, especially when I knew better.

I need to quit making the person I'm with the center of my universe. It doesn't work out. Thanks for listening and for any responses.

wonderingbull posted 9/26/2013 11:35 AM

I need to quit making the person I'm with the center of my universe.

You solved your own problem... Listen to the voice in your head that told you that...


jo2love posted 9/26/2013 12:20 PM


Brandon808 posted 9/26/2013 12:35 PM

I know what it's like to try again and be hurt. No 2x4s from for that. You sincerely tried and opened up. You took a leap of faith. Nothing wrong with that, though it doesn't lessen the hurt.

Take time for yourself.

She11ybeanz posted 9/26/2013 13:09 PM

Take time for yourself.

I'm sorry for what is happening to you. I, too, dated too soon after my divorce and I have a daughter as a product of that relationship (she is my pride and joy...but was most definitely a surprise and he is not in her life at all). I know how much it hurts to put yourself out there fully AGAIN only to end up alone again. It hurts to be wrong about someone that you thought was so right for you. I think when you get hurt from infidelity and divorce and try to date too soon, you are blinded by the red flags that would be much more apparent had you taken more time for yourself to heal. I found this out the hard way too. But, I've been single now a year and a half....gone on a few "1st dates" but have kept my standards high and haven't found anyone worthy of going further with. I think that its good to be picky and good to take out time to find yourself. Its not always easy though. I hate feeling lonely and hate being one of the ONLY single people in my group of friends. But, it is what it is.....and I think God has a plan for us all. Be patient....and be kind to yourself.

You. are. not. alone.

Newlease posted 9/26/2013 13:26 PM

No 2x4s here. Sounds like you have grown through this whole process.

I decided to keep my standards high and not jump into a relationship for convenience.

I did all the things I wish I had done in my marriage.

I started out full of confidence knowing that I had done everything I could to be the best partner I could be.

I need to quit making the person I'm with the center of my universe.

You can't control how another person acts, but you can control how you act and react to situations. This is just another step in you developing into a better person and a better partner for the right person.

Sending strength and peace.


nowiknow23 posted 9/26/2013 13:27 PM


Snapdragon posted 9/26/2013 18:56 PM

It sounds like this had nothing to do with you. It was her and her issues. I can see how you would examine your relationship and your actions. But I think you need to be more gentle with yourself.

I'm sorry you are hurting. Please take some time to decompress and heal. Let her go. Tuck the experience under your belt.

lieshurt posted 9/26/2013 18:57 PM


Did you learn something from this that you can take forward with you? If so, then all was not wasted and you are no fool. You tried, which takes courage. Many people can't say they have that...ya know?

better4me posted 9/26/2013 22:28 PM


Kind thoughts, love isn't wasted even when it ends before we want it to. The feelings you are feeling show that you are human, that there are things that you desire, and this is what we humans feel when there is a gap between what we want and what we get. It may seem that the "cure" for this is to harden your heart and not to try to love again, but that is only a temporary fix and it will lead to more brokeness. Learn what you need to learn from this, take time to feel stronger and in a few months time you may find that you want to try again...

This isn't about being a "fool" for letting yourself get hurt again, it is when we are most vulnerable that we really are at our bravest points.

I wish you a good night's sleep. It does get better, you know this...

fraeuken posted 9/26/2013 23:10 PM

BT, no 2x4 here. I was on the other end of this. I am 44 and dated somebody 20 years my senior who ended up going back to his ex. I completely put myself out there and got hurt worse than ever before. Just try to move on, you now know you can love again. This is the one lesson I learned. I can love again. I hope you can do too.

InnerLight posted 9/26/2013 23:17 PM


Sorry for your pain. That sounds really hard. I don't think you did anything wrong. Take extra good care of yourself and spend some time with people that care about you.

fadedrainbow posted 9/27/2013 01:44 AM

(((BT))) You are not a fool. Life is about taking risks. I am sorry you are hurting. Take care of your heart. Though it doesn't feel like it now, this is another step on your path to wholeness. FR

BTrade posted 9/27/2013 15:35 PM

I kind of suck at this....she broke NC last night and started asking questions. Probably because her roommate stopped by my workplace to talk (she's a vendor) and I didn't ask or mention anything about her. A couple hours later, it's "how are you?"

I've lost about 15 lbs in the last three weeks. I have to admit I'm looking pretty good. Knowing her roommate, that was probably mentioned!

Now the quandary. What does it mean to stay NC? I reply to her texts, or I don't? Of course I was head over heels for this girl so it's got me all twisted up inside...because the truth is, nothing has changed. She didn't ask me for anything. She didn't tell me she felt differently. And the truth is, I find it highly unlikely that even if she did want to work things out -- this is just going to happen again, right?

What steps do you let a person take to know they really want to work things out? Here I am....ready to punish myself some more. I am through the hardest part of this and could probably soldier on and be ok with things. And yet here I am hoping that perhaps her getting in touch with me means something.

I'm a very short-term thinker. That's a big part of my problem I think. If this girl wants me, she won't disappear just because I'm in NC mode, right? If it were something meant to happen, that'll be just as true a few weeks from now?

I almost preferred NC over the anguish of not knowing what to do or say. I can't be open and honest without leaving myself vulnerable to the exact same situation.

Hearing from her did relieve some anxiety, but overall - nothing has changed. So I just stay NC and walk this out until.....until I don't care anymore or she shows that she wants to make some changes? God I'm jumping so far ahead of myself.

better4me posted 9/27/2013 16:48 PM

I think you know what kind of NC is best for you (complete NC, shades of gray NC, fuck-it-I-don't-care-I-HAVE-to-break-it NC)in this situation. And, I think you know the consequences of each kind.

*I* think it would be strange not to respond to the text, but I would say something like, "I'm okay but I still need some time to sort this out before I talk with you. I'll let you know when I want to talk with you again."

Remembering the wisdom I learned here on SI, "No contact, means no new hurts"

What steps do you let a person take to know they really want to work things out?
First, I can't "let" or "make" anyone take any steps. If they want to work things out, they need to SAY so and then follow up that statement with ACTION".

What did she say in the texts beside "how are you?"

NaiveAgain posted 9/27/2013 21:35 PM

I'm confused. Did she actually break up with you? Did she just say she needed a break? Or did she say she needs to work on herself and you should move on? You two had a relationship, right? Were you exclusive and committed? Did you talk about the future together?

I don't want to get your hopes up, because it is never a good thing when one partner "disappears" to work on themselves, because in a solid relationship, self work is a continuous process and it will happen while the partners are together.

But she is very young and may trying to be figure out what she wants out of life. Have you two talked about children? Future? Careers?

Because how I would proceed from here is dependent on how deeply you two talked and what kind of plans were made.

NC if future plans were never broached and you were just doing a day-to-day type of thing. But if you two had talked seriously and made some type of plans for a future, I would need a bit more for closure. I would contact her once more and ask her flat-out what she is wanting here.....

BTrade posted 9/27/2013 22:15 PM

Yes, we had talked about the future. She talked about it more than I did. My only caveat to the whole relationship was that I wasn't interested in being in a relationship without the possibility of a future but didn't need any promises. Just wanted to see where it would go.

I don't want to get too detailed, but our relationship did not revolve around sex. She was the type to put her hand on mine when I was driving, or I could wake up in the middle of the night and she'd be scratching my back. I reciprocated that love and intimacy. And the sex was fantastic too, but it wasn't the pillar of the relationship at all.

I feel like there was something special between us and it has made this split difficult.

At one point, she did say not to worry, that everything would be fine once she gets her shit together. I just don't get that though, and it doesn't make sense to me to abandon the person that really wants to support you during a difficult time. It makes me think there is more to the story that I don't know. Being cheated on in the past doesn't help me paint positive pictures in my head.

I am grateful for the advice and the thoughts you all have given me here. I do know that I will be ok, and it's a blessing to understand that even in the midst of the painful part. Thank you all!

BTrade posted 9/27/2013 23:52 PM

You know what? I'm getting caught up making mountains of mole hills. She said how are y

LearningToRun posted 9/28/2013 02:49 AM

You know that book "he's just not into you."? It has a general theme that if a person wants to be with you, they will move heaven and earth to make it happen. They will make sure you know it too, and they wouldn't even take a chance of letting you slip through their fingers.
She has decided to risk losing you. That would tell me all I need to know.

Every time I have tried to pretzel myself for a crumb relationship, and I see hints that she wouldn't give you a commitment ( just got out of one like that 3 months ago, we used the same sentances you used) its just never worked.

You deserve someone who is all in, and you can't find them while clinging to the one who made you an option.

I'm sorry for your pain. I'm just not a believer in second chances anymore. You risk me, there is a price to pay, and that price is losing me.

I just Reread and where there is smoke, there is fire and you are smelling smoke. He excuses don't make sense. Trust your gut here and find another. If she wants you, she will make it happen. A text is not making it happen, that's keeping you in her back pocket.

[This message edited by LearningToRun at 2:53 AM, September 28th (Saturday)]

better4me posted 9/28/2013 13:09 PM

You know what? I'm getting caught up making mountains of mole hills.
Oh, yea, I've been in the earth moving business many times too. Just chill. Make plans for the weekend, do something for yourself, go out with friends, go for a run. Don't just sit at home!

Sounds like you are feeling better? Hope so.

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