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A breakup for no good reasons and an ex who sends unclear signals

Breaks and Breaking Up It happens to most everyone at some point in life! Share your experiences!

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Old 31st January 2019, 10:35 PM   #1
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A breakup for no good reasons and an ex who sends unclear signals

Short intro: Pardon my English, not my first language. And maybe necessary cultural background? Both me (27/F) and the ex (24/M) and I are from western Europe and didn't have a relationship with very "traditional" guy/girl roles. Also - sorry for the long post, but I'd rather put too much context than too little.

Anyway. On to the problem... I'm just putting my thoughts here but if you have any advice, let me know.

We'd been together for almost 2 years, long distance since we met online over a mutual hobby (online gaming). I wouldn't call our relationship perfect, because nothing ever is perfect, but we never had issues with jealousy, conflicting values, huge arguments with a week of silence, that sort of stuff. We started out as friends first, but realized we were having feelings fairly soon. It wasn't the first LDR for either of us, so we thought that we could handle that and we could at least try. Things were going pretty well and we slowly started floating the idea of moving in together – not right now, but in a year or two, perhaps.
Early in December, he came over to visit me as always (my place is more suitable for meetups) and I didn't think anything was off. He even offered me to help with expenses, as I had to exchange some broken furniture but was strapped for cash. Just student things. When he left, he said he'd be looking at coming back in two weeks – a little earlier than usual, but sure, I'd be happy to have him.

That visit didn't happen because of a busy pre-holiday season, and around the holidays he actually disappeared almost completely. I asked him what was going on, and he simply said "he wasn't feeling up to talk lately". Since he has had issues with depressive episodes in the past and this is one of the signs he's not doing well, I didn't push the issue so he wouldn't feel smothered. I just sent him a message that I'd be there if he needed to talk about anything. He'd send a few texts back, but nothing special.

A week later after this sudden limited contact for no reason, he simply messaged me "sorry, but we're not working out anymore. Goodbye." When I read that, it actually took me a while to process because it came completely out of the blue. I asked him why he made that decision. His answers were extremely unsatisfying, to say the least. He mentioned an argument we had which was about absolutely nothing (the essence of it was: I grew annoyed because he sent me links to some vaguely political e-drama which concerned neither of us – I get no form of "entertainment" out of reading that and prefer to relax with a good book. Better for my mental well-being.)
Then he backtracked and said he "couldn't be himself around me", which also had me confused. He had said the opposite earlier not too long ago and never complained about any major incompatibilities. The whole conversation ended with a "maybe we can sort this out some day in the distant future" -"yeah, maybe..."

But all of that aside - he's not been acting like I personally would expect people to act after a breakup. Being long distance, it should be easy to untangle each others lives. Unfriend each other on messengers. We both don't do any sort of social media like Facebook or Instagram, so there is nothing to stalk or unfollow. You want to go? Then go. No risk of bumping into each other on the street or through mutual friends.

Except... he didn't do any of that. A few days later, he messaged me, asking how I was doing. (I gave a non-committal one word answer – what does he expect...)
Out of morbid curiosity, I sent him an image related to a shared interest some days later, to which he immediately responded in a friendly way.
A while after that, he contacted me to ask if I could help him with something in an online game (also a shared hobby of ours.) Didn't pan out because a third party had to leave, but still odd behavior, imo.

Recently, he messaged me again, again asking stuff about purely hobby-related things, what he was planning to do, wanted to know what I was planning on doing, your average casual conversation.
As of now, he's gone underground again, but I suppose I haven't heard the last of him.

I don't understand what he wants, to be honest. I'm aware that "he wants you back" is most likely not what he is getting at, but at the same time, this is far from a clean breakup.
He never offered to stay friends and completely broke off contact with any other exes as well. So why doesn't he leave me alone then, too?

And what I want? Well, I'd be lying if I said I didn't love him anymore. I do want to at least talk about this mess, and I'm open to the idea of getting back together – under the condition that we both have a talk about why and where things went wrong, because I don't wanna go down this route a third or fourth time.
I'm at a loss how to best convey that, though.

I definitely don't want to be clingy. Whatever his reasons for the breakup, at the very least he needs time and space to sort himself and his life out, and I don't want to interfere with that.
But I also don't want to discourage him from approaching me with a genuine apology, IF he were to offer one. Sure, I can't predict that will happen, but I don't want to discard that option just yet. I have this nagging feeling that this breakup wasn't about me or the relationship at all (or I'm completely delusional...), but has something to do with external circumstances or internal struggles I know nothing about. My read on the situation is that he is genuinely confused and doing confusing stuff as a result, but let's be honest, I'm probably extremely biased here.

Which brings me back to square one – I have no idea what he wants from me and how to best proceed... Prior breakups I went through meant either a clear cut of all communication, or in the case of a mutual one, some friendly messages which faded out naturally after a while. This situation just feels messy and complicated, and I don't like it.

Blocking him would basically be the nuclear option in case he would be stringing me along with malicious intent. We'd both consider blocking a terminal, irreversible "F*** you" reserved for only the absolute worst of people, and neither he nor me would ever consider reaching out to somebody after that again, no matter if you get unblocked or messaged first. So right now I'm saving that as a last resort in case he reveals himself to be a complete idiot.

Last edited by caffeinated_nerd; 31st January 2019 at 10:38 PM..
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Old 1st February 2019, 10:38 AM   #2
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Sounds like the distance got to him after all this time & there was a closer prospect he wants to chase.

He still reaches out because he likes you as a person which just rubs salt in your wounds.
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Old 1st February 2019, 12:12 PM   #3
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Seems he's got one and stringing you OR could be just confused.

Give it time and space..that's what I am doing. You might've answers in the end.
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Old 1st February 2019, 5:24 PM   #4
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While I of course can't deny or confirm it, I'm fairly sure that another girl is not the reason for the breakup. Doesn't sound like him at all, and I think the distance is sometimes even preferable for him at times.

One thing I just remembered is that he was acting different than normally before the breakup already - a little more impatient and critical with people, picking up a new hobby but getting frustrated by it after a short while, those sort of things. I wonder if maybe he projected those feelings of "nothing is going in the right direction" onto our relationship?

Otherwise, I'm just not attempting to contact him for the near future, and he doesn't seem to log onto any platform anyway. He should (hopefully) know where to find me, if he had anything to say.
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Old 1st February 2019, 5:45 PM   #5
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Don't settle for being plan B.
Move onward and upward.
Change your gaming to remove him from your life and move forward (change guild, block, new game, whatever).
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