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Letting go of lost love


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Old 19th February 2019, 6:32 PM   #1
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Letting go of lost love

Hi there, I'd like to share my story with you. I have no one else to talk to.

My lost love and I were together in college and dated for a few months, before we graduated and parted ways for a number of (silly) reasons I canít even recall. I never forgot him though. Last year we re-met at a college reunion 20 years later, and became good friends. We saw each other socially and met each other's spouses and children.

But, as I started to discover that he hadnít forgotten me either, things started to drift towards the romantic side - and we didnít have the strength to stop it. The connection was amazing. It was as if we had never been apart. We started an intensely emotional affair with the feeling, you know, Ďthis is the person I should have marriedí.

It was intense, wonderful, otherworldly. We were one. We understood each other like nobody else had ever done before. And then, inevitably, we got sexual, stage that we hadn't even reached in our first romance. The emotions were overwhelming. We both were torn between love and family, between feelings and thoughts.

We are not the type of person who can keep an illicit affair for years, though. Neither of us wanted to be there. So, we gave ourselves a six month deadline to make a decision. Then, we would have to leave our spouses, or leave each other.

Meanwhile, it was very weird, because our families had become friends and our kids played together. And we knew we still loved our spouses, in spite of what we felt for one another. It may sound contradictory, but it is not. It's a different kind of love. Then again, he is a real family man, and I realised I loved him immensely and didnít want to take that away from him. And he felt the same towards me. It was heart-wrenching.

So, the deadline arrived, and as we couldnít stand to leave our families (or make the other person leave theirs), we decided to lovingly say goodbye and go our separate ways. I have to say we parted in a beautiful way, both of us saying I love you, please take care of yourself, I wish you all the best in this world.

We never confessed the whole affair to our spouses, and they never found out. But we both agreed to tell our spouses that we found ourselves still feeling some attraction for this old bf/gf, so it was better to end the friendship with them.

Donít beat me up, but I donít regret it. Iím glad that it happened - and Iím glad that it ended too. We have lived the most wonderful experience in our lives, and itís been worth it. It has brought pain, but also, it has brought light and love to a life that was getting rather dull. And it has charged both of us with an energy we are now trying to transfer to rekindling the relationship with our spouses.

Itís been a month since we parted. We havenít seen each other again or had contact in any way, and we won't do it. I miss him like hell. I still feel connected to him. Itís being extremely painful to let him go, and I still find myself crying at times, but I hope things will get better as time goes by. When I feel the pain, I donít even try to stop it. I allow myself to think of him, and wish him the very best with all my love and respect. That brings some peace and comfort to my heart.

Now, my lost love and I must devote ourselves to our families and live our separate lives. Maybe there will be a time for us some day, perhaps later in life. Or probably never. Perhaps in another life, if you believe in that. And, as Iíve done for the past 20 years, Iíll forever hold a special place in my heart for him. My soulmate, my friend, my life, my most beloved.
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Old 19th February 2019, 7:04 PM   #2
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Telling your spouses you felt attracting is going to stir up a hornet's nest on both marriages. It's not something anyone wants to hear. What a mess.
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Old 19th February 2019, 7:27 PM   #3
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Well, it has worked for me, and I hope for my ex-lover too. My husband has acknowledged my sincerity and my determination not to see my 'friend' again. He knows I've chosen him over whatever. I would appreciate it too, if my husband were to tell me the same and cut off any contact with the person. You are not responsible for what you feel, but you are responsible for acting on it.

The purpose of this is to avoid relying solely on my own will to stay away from my ex-lover, but have my husband help me. Besides, as both families had become friends, we had to find a good reason to stop hanging out together, otherwise it would be a bit weird, right? My kids still ask about going to play with their friends (and the kids were really getting along together!) and my heart tears apart, but we couldn't risk it. Of course we thought about 'staying friends', but we knew it wouldn't work. We would fall again.

Last edited by AlwaysLoveYou; 19th February 2019 at 7:30 PM..
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Old 20th February 2019, 2:09 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by AlwaysLoveYou View Post
... We have lived the most wonderful experience in our lives, and itís been worth it. It has brought pain, but also, it has brought light and love to a life that was getting rather dull. And it has charged both of us with an energy we are now trying to transfer to rekindling the relationship with our spouses.

Itís been a month since we parted. We havenít seen each other again or had contact in any way, and we won't do it. I miss him like hell. I still feel connected to him. Itís being extremely painful to let him go, and I still find myself crying at times, but I hope things will get better as time goes by. When I feel the pain, I donít even try to stop it. I allow myself to think of him, and wish him the very best with all my love and respect. That brings some peace and comfort to my heart.

... And, as Iíve done for the past 20 years, Iíll forever hold a special place in my heart for him. My soulmate, my friend, my life, my most beloved.

This is limerence. I agree it is quite the experience in some ways. Think you are handling it reasonably well (despite going PA) as for some it is an addiction they can't control.

Normally it fades after 1-3 years, so indeed it is likely to eventually get better.

Strongly suggest that you be very cautious going forward. And be glad your actions did not results in destroying your family (and his). Apologies for the buzzkill, but many, many other people in similar situations have not been so lucky!
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Old 20th February 2019, 9:21 AM   #5
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Not sure what PA is, but thanks for your support
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Old 20th February 2019, 9:32 AM   #6
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I feel terrible for your spouses. As long as you got what you wanted, though. Congratulations indeed
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Old 21st February 2019, 10:20 AM   #7
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oh I see, EA, PA. Just getting used to so many abbreviations lol
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Old 21st February 2019, 10:49 AM   #8
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Do you have a question for LS or just want to make a statement?
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Old 21st February 2019, 5:44 PM   #9
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I don't know, I just had to share it with someone and vent... but yes, there are lots of questions.

Is it possible that, even if the limerence subsides, I keep on loving him forever?I think that's what happened in the past 20 years, when maybe I was not 'in love' but some part of me still loved him.

Will I spend the rest of my life 'waiting' for a better moment to be with him?

Will I ever stop thinking he is my soulmate and the man I should have married?

Difficult questions, I know, I don't think anyone has the answers, but I'd love to hear your thoughts...
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Old 21st February 2019, 7:51 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by AlwaysLoveYou View Post
You are not responsible for what you feel, but you are responsible for acting on it.
But if you "fess up" to "developing feelings" before either spouse finds out, then the "acting on it" gets canceled out? No longer responsible for that?

lol
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Old 21st February 2019, 11:54 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by AlwaysLoveYou View Post
I don't know, I just had to share it with someone and vent... but yes, there are lots of questions.

Is it possible that, even if the limerence subsides, I keep on loving him forever?I think that's what happened in the past 20 years, when maybe I was not 'in love' but some part of me still loved him.

Will I spend the rest of my life 'waiting' for a better moment to be with him?

Will I ever stop thinking he is my soulmate and the man I should have married?

Difficult questions, I know, I don't think anyone has the answers, but I'd love to hear your thoughts...

No one can really answer these questions. But I think realistically probably not. You guys met, it triggered very strong feelings (obviously) and now you've acted on them. In 20 years both you and he will be different people essentially and you may no longer feel the same/respond the same way to each other.

That's what's likely IMO. I could always be wrong.


Limerence can be quite a mind**** and you start having thoughts like this. Past lives, soulmates, what-ifs; really any schlock your emotional brain can get your thinking brain to partly buy into. Anything that ups the drama and makes it more "poignant" tends to get replayed. But isn't that all really just your brain fooling itself and pondering unknowables? You can kill a LOT of hours on this. I have to admit I did.

Last edited by mark clemson; 21st February 2019 at 11:59 PM..
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Old 22nd February 2019, 2:41 PM   #12
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By the way, I'm going to reiterate my suggestion that you be very very cautious going forward. I get the distinct impression from your posts that you're idealizing the affair/AP. Please realize that the stuff you have done can blow up both of your families. Please think about that for a long while...
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Old 22nd February 2019, 7:21 PM   #13
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I get the distinct impression from your posts that you're idealizing the affair/AP.
I suppose that's because I'm still in love with him.
I know, limerence is something and it messes with your brain, but beyond that, love does exist, or doesn't it...
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Old 22nd February 2019, 8:58 PM   #14
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Some people would consider limerence love (a state). Some would consider building a long term life together love (an action). I'm sure there are other views as well.

Not my place to tell you which to pick, but it's worth pointing out that you've built a family with your husband, not with AP. Unbuilding it and attempting to build a new one with AP would likely be extremely messy. You should really read some posts in the Infidelity and OM/OW sections to get a sense of what you're tangling with.

Wish you all the best (really!)...
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