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Can I turn this around?


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Old 25th February 2019, 5:44 PM   #1
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Can I turn this around?

Hi all, I just joined and wanted to share my story. I wanted to get your thoughts on my chances to turn around this situation.

I dated my ex for 2.8 years and he broke it off on Nov 16. When we started dating he was deeply in love and wanted to move in with me after six months -- he thought I was the perfect girl for him and was 90% sure he wanted to marry me. The first two years were a smooth ride with him doing a lot to make me happy. He made some compromises in the beginning wanting to do everything in his power to please me (and I was left with the impression that he was happy with the compromises) - related to our sexual compatibility (his drive > mine), my independence and how I "took care of him", and how much time I spent with his friends (not a lot).

Around May of last year he started a project in Europe (we were living together in New York) and we saw each other every other weekend. Around that time he mentioned being unhappy but said it was not the relationship after I probed (he said he wanted to see a therapist to figure out what was going on with him). Over time I felt him getting distant and not being warm and affectionate. During a trip we did in October I exploded, cried, and we talked - he said he cares about our relationship and wants to work on it. In November he was in New York for a weekend and went out with friends - he did not come home for two days. When he came home he was apologetic and again said he cares about the relationship. I had a sixth sense and checked his phone to discover a message to a girl he had met that night (he claims nothing happened). When I confronted him he broke up with me and said he has been unhappy for nine months for things I thought we had discussed and reached a compromise on.

I made a few attempts to turn things around. We saw our couple's therapist but he seemed determined. I talked to him in person once and wrote him a long and kind letter acknowledging my understanding of what I did wrong in the relationship. I appealed to the fact that we have not really given this a second chance and showing him I truly understand how our misunderstanding came to be. He said he does not see how things can be different in the future.

My interpretation of the situation is that he idealized me in the beginning and was willing to make compromises, two years into the relationship wanted more from me but did not know how to communicate it and hoped I would just change on my own. It's frustrating because I know I would have done things differently if I had known how important it is for him.

I am curious if you have been in a similar situation or have any observations that can help me decide whether to try again in the future or move on.

I appreciate your responses!
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Old 25th February 2019, 6:53 PM   #2
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A few more points...

I really feel that what we had was worth fighting for. We made a power team, we had a lot of interests in common and fundamentally the same values. What ended up happening was little things chipping away at our relationship because we did not talk about them. I admit there is more I could have done but I feel that he was not transparent enough with me to indicate a change is needed.
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Old 25th February 2019, 7:03 PM   #3
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He's just not ready for anything long-term. He's still interested in other women. And he doesn't want to compromise, and that's what marriage is all about. You've done the right things and he doesn't want to change and has lost the desire to work on it and be with you and is moving on. I'm sorry.
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Old 25th February 2019, 8:59 PM   #4
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Any other less bleak thoughts 😬? He is in his mid-thirties and has always talked about family and commitment so not being ready for a long term relationship seems out of character. Also he has never so much as looked at another woman and is still attracted to me. I read it as disappointment for not being completely happy with the girl he thought was the one for him.
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Old 26th February 2019, 3:02 AM   #5
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Unfortunately, you can't turn things around when the other person isn't willing to work with you.

He's been pretty firm that he doesn't see a future. While I am sure you feel the connection and believe it's worth fighting for, he doesn't share that view any longer. Not only that, but he's already testing the water with another person.That is the sign that he's been emotionally gone a while, sadly.
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Old 26th February 2019, 2:05 PM   #6
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If he's willing to re-hash things from months ago, he's convinced the situation can't be changed and NC isn't getting him interested, he's done. He's either buried into what he's doing or is pursuing someone else. It's just how we do it.
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Old 27th February 2019, 11:07 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by desim View Post
My interpretation of the situation is that he idealized me in the beginning and was willing to make compromises, two years into the relationship wanted more from me but did not know how to communicate it and hoped I would just change on my own.

I think your assessment here is essentially correct (or as likely to be correct as anything you'll hear from people who aren't as close to the situation as you are).

The posters above are right - you can't work with someone who won't work with you. If the other person is unwilling, there's ultimately not much one can do. You can keep trying for a while to see if he changes his mind, but you should prepare yourself to move on.

IF he does come back, would it bother you if he saw someone else while you two were not together (or even while you were, per the phone message you described?) You'd be wise to be psychologically prepared for that possibility as well, IF you can persuade him to come back.

Bottom line is that at this point you should be prepared to move on...
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