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Is a 180 the Right Answer?

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Old 22nd February 2019, 1:38 AM   #1
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Is a 180 the Right Answer?

Sorry for so much detail. Forgive me, and I value your labor in reading this. I hope I can pay it forward some day.

So. Here's some backstory. We both suffer from PTSD and depression. About 6 months ago my fiancee basically shut down because she's going through some really tough times and has been for YEARS. Most of her life really it's been one thing after another (26 with 3 back operations, friend in the process of dying, fibro, and lupus). Even with me, and my coming to terms from combat related PTSD, what caused me to try and break up with her, and walk out on her many times and she would never let me leave the room much less her, even with me using restricted force to try to force my way out (never hit her) but I got on meds and I went from lashing out, wanting to break up, and not wanting to wake up to a job+full time college for a nursing degree. Things were going great until she shut off.

I noticed it, and tried to talk but she wouldn't. She ran to her friends. I understand there's things that she doesn't want to tell me but I got defensive, I was hurt. Anyway we separated. It wasn't because of her and I, but her parents. We don't get along. and we were in their house.

Days later she tells me she wants to take a break from us. I go into super defense mode and cling which you all know how that went. She cries, I almost cry and I agree that I'll give her space and that lasted about 27 seconds (actually 2 weeks)we would small talk and touch on us, but around that time her mom was kicked by a horse and i meet her at the hospital. We have a heated discussion in the parking lot in which I got mad because she wouldn't let me see our (not my bio) little boy and I tell her to break up with me and to stop leading me along.

she freaking BALLED her eyes out and wouldn't even bring it up. She won't let me in, she won't let me out. So last night we met at her barn so she could give me some paperwork. We talked and she explained some things more clearly, and she said that she's been giving me what I want but she hasn't got what she wanted(during the separation) which is space. She feels that she's been robbed of her 20's. She's always wanted to be a doctor, she's not happy where she's at with life and she wants to calibrate herself. She told me that she's pretty much written everyone off but her best friend which is her rock(each other's rock) and it's not anything I did or didn't do.

We hugged for a long time, I gave my usual forehead kiss and then I told her I had an idea. We would stop talking about us (this is before I read about the 180) and that I have college on Mon and Wed and I get out at 8:15pm on both days and I would go to the barn and wait 30 minutes for 2 weeks and on the last Wednesday if I didn't see her Thursday I would come and get the rest of my stuff and be out forever. I'm prepared to do that but I don't want to.

after that I walked her to her car and I just held her. we didn't say much of anything but when it was time to go I gave her a forehead kiss, and I asked for one from her she obliged and as I was walking to the car she called me back and gave me another one.

but today I had to call her to get some paperwork emailed to me and she sounded so much happier and even gave me a perky " love you too" they've been cold the past few weeks.

So with that being said is a true 180 the right answer? That's why I gave so much detail. I feel that it may not be the right answer, I feel like I should make a modified 180 lol.

again thank you for taking a chunk out of your day to help me.
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Old 22nd February 2019, 7:39 AM   #2
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What is the 180? Never having heard of it, I doubt it works. It sounds like some cockamamie screwball thing where you stop being true to yourself (Completely change you) in an attempt to manipulate the other person to come back. Garbage like that never works.

Your GF has a lot on her plate. 3 surgeries before age 26 is a lot. Assuming that was 6 years ago, you are now saying that at 32 she complains that she was robbed of her 20s. I can see that if she was always dealing with medical issues. You don't mention where she is now but fibro & lupus are forever.

Her complaint is that she's not happy with life. Her solution is to shake up all the pieces, including your relationship & take a different path. You need to understand that to mean "it's not you, it's her" because that is the truth. She is done with this relationship. She views it as one of the many things holding her back. Her BFF is her rock, not you, which is a huge problem. If you haven't surpassed the BFF as the most important person in her life, the person she turns to when times are toughest, you are never going to get to that #1 spot no matter what you do.

She has made up her mind. Chasing after her won't fix this. Trying to manipulate her through NC won't fix this. She's chasing that wildness she thought she missed out on when she was younger. You are just in her way.

Don't waste your time waiting at some barn. Get your stuff. Start untangling your lives. Do ask for a minute to say good bye to the child so he understands that it wasn't him. Work with your PTSD counselor & bury yourself in your school work.
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Old 22nd February 2019, 1:20 PM   #3
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I think the 180 the OP is referring to is basically going NC. Instead of trying to stay near her, with her, pressuring her for answers, etc., he turns in the opposite direction.

It sounds to me like both of you have some pretty serious issues you are trying to navigate. You seem to have overcome many of your serious issues with the help of medication and (perhaps) therapy and you are working toward a nursing degree. Is she also in individual therapy for PTSD?

If you do not get along with her parents, that could ultimately be a deal-breaker, especially if they have influence over her. Honestly, if my 26 year old daughter were with someone who exhibited anger issues (whether now or in the past), I would have reservations about that relationship, too.

Maybe, at this point in your life, it would be better for you to step away from this relationship and get a fresh start. You're not married. You do not have a child together. Sometimes the obstacles are too big to overcome, especially when both of you are dealing with such serious issues AND your relationship does not have the support of her family.

Your original questions was 180 or not 180. I think the question you should be answering is whether this relationship is the best thing for you moving forward.
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Old 22nd February 2019, 6:18 PM   #4
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The 180 is a tough one. I could work... but it could backfire too. Some women need the attention, and when they don't get it... they come back. Some women want to be chased a little... and if you don't stay in contact... then they may feel abandoned. (and leave)

Only you know the type she is, and what the right thing to do is.
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Old 22nd February 2019, 6:47 PM   #5
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I always say NC is the best way to get them back and the best way to move on so itís kind of a win-win. I tend to agree with the earlier post though that says you are both young, you arenít married, no kids. Maybe itís okay to just accept that this relationship has too many issues and someone else will be a better fit, focus on you and leave her be.

But you can do that through NC and if she comes back at some point when she sees you moving on maybe that will be the change she needed. But I donít think you should do NC just to get her back. Do it because it will be the best chance for you to move forward, be healthy, get clarity.
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Old 22nd February 2019, 7:19 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by uh7 View Post
I tell her to break up with me
uh7, she already has. Everything she's said has pointed in the same direction, away from a relationship with you. Since it's not what you want to hear, it's been understandably hard for you to accept.

The 180 is indeed of value in your situation, it's designed to let your partner know, if they're moving on with their life, so will you with yours. Admittedly a Hail Mary as far as saving the relationship, it helps them understand what they might be placing at risk. If you continue to pursue, she loses her chance at that clarity.

The waiting at the barn seems unnecessary. If you want to give her some time to reconsider, I'd guess she knows how to find you. Hope you find some peace in this process...

Mr. Lucky
Happiness is not a goal; it is a byproduct -

Eleanor Roosevelt
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Old 23rd February 2019, 1:14 AM   #7
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Thank you all for all the kind, and sobering words. It has been a rollercoaster for sure. I'm in a psychology class for my understudy and we just happened to talk about PTSD today. My professor and I pretty much took over the class with my issues and what we covered in class explained what she and I are doing. Between us both we're displaying almost every symptom of PTSD there is. Her withdrawing, and my latching on to her. This will pass I just have to rebuild trust from the beginning, but I'm also prepared for it to end. But! My goal now is to keep it civil and to help her as much as I can. I know how dark PTSD can be.

After the impromptu therapy session I feel a lot better going forward. I realized I know nothing about PTSD considering we both have it. I've spent the last 11 hours researching and reading for my own well being. and! it's all for school so I didn't waste a day! =]

I feel you guys are invested now so I have to keep you updated lol We spoke today because she forget to scan some of the paperwork I needed and we might be going on a nature walk this Sunday as friends, with no "we or us" being used. so we'll see.
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Old 23rd February 2019, 11:40 AM   #8
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You canít be friends if you still have feelings for her and want to get back together. You wonít be able to progress in anything you want to have or do in your own life if you keep doing this. You really want to be her crutch as she gets over you and then have to get over her on your own later?

I get that she would benefit from your support but itís like youíre offering her everything she might want from a relationship with you (although you donít even know she wants this from you) but agreeing that she doesnít have to make an effort for you. Youíll both just focus on her. I donít think that sounds like the best idea.
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Old 24th February 2019, 9:17 PM   #9
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I don't think he wants a romantic relationship with you.
I'd just move on and get on with your life.
'Love is giving someone the power to destroy you, but trusting them not to'
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Old 11th March 2019, 11:29 AM   #10
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The beauty of the 180 behavior as described by Michele Weiner-Davis is that it benefits you regardless of the eventual fate of your relationship. It focuses your effort on yourself instead of your partner because you are the only thing you can control.
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