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I might be in an abusive relationship

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Old 1st December 2015, 4:24 AM   #1
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Unhappy I might be in an abusive relationship


I apologize in advance for the length of this thread, but I just have never posted my story and would like to hear opinions on advice on this, because I feel lost and start doubting myself. Thank you.

I met my SO in spring 2012. I was 24 at that time (now almost 28), completing a Master's program and had been single for over two years. I met (27 at that time, now 31) him through a mutual friend, he didn't live in our city, but another country and was just visiting. I fell for him hard from the day I met him. He seemed to be super interested in me too, and we hit it off. We started a long distance relationship and he seemed to be an amazing guy who really cared about me. Always texting and calling me, and he moved quite fast in telling me how he feels about me, that he wants a future with me and thinks I'm the one. A couple of months later, I finished my degree and he asked me to move to his country and live with him. It was a huge step, but I did it, because I really wanted to be with him and I didn't have any job opportunities where I lived anyway at that moment.

The first couple of months were amazing, honeymoon phase I guess. Then I randomly found out through a mutual friend that my SO had a girlfriend of over a year at the time we met. I was furious and hurt, and confronted him. He admitted that he had that girlfriend, but broke up with her just days after meeting her. That he cared about her, but that he really fell in love with me and wanted to be with me, not with her. He said he felt ashamed and was scared that I wouldn't want him if I knew the truth. Since he broke up with her already, I decided to forgive him. Still, the next problems started. We weren't very good at communicating, maybe because we moved in together quite quickly, so we started fighting a lot. Suddenly he told me that he isn't sure if he should be in a relationship right now, and even though he loves me he said he doesn't know what to do. I was heartbroken and cried a lot, since I loved him so much and left my own country for him. Just a month later, he broke up with me, saying that he thinks he's not ready for a relationship. I decided to stay in the country for a while longer, since I just arrived there 5 months earlier. I rented a room in an apartment with some roommates. Just two weeks later he came back to me and apologized for everything he had done, and that I'm the love of his life and that we just have to learn how to communicate better. I took him back and moved back to his apartment.

For a while everything was great again, then we started fighting again. Of course the fights weren't only his fault, but I always believed that we can work it out. After I had a huge fight with my mother (the biggest I've ever had til now) and was super depressed about it, he broke up with me. Again. Just 5 months after the last time he broke up. He said he just feels I'm upset with him all the time, which is totally not true. I was sad for a few days because of my Mom and it had nothing to do with him, and I told him so before. I wanted to give up on him at that point, but then I received an amazing job offer. I decided again to stay in the country, and moved into another apartment again. We didn't have contact for around a month, I went NC and then he contacted me, saying the same as he said before. That he just cannot forget me and still loves me and wants to try again. I took him back, again, but decided this time to not move back in again with him. Everything was good again, even though I found out he dated another girl while broken up with me, but that he broke off things with her to go back to me. Problems started again, this time differently. We didn't fight much anymore, and most of the time everything was amazing. I started to get suspicious though because I often saw the name of his ex (the girl he broke up with for me back in 2012) popping up on his phone, he was whatsapping with her pretty often. I told him I don't like it at all that he's texting so much with her, and he said they're just friends and nothing else. Friends? I hadn't even met her, ever. And he also never saw her, that's at least what I think (he spent most free time with me).

May 2014, we went on an amazing trip to Asia and everything was just great, til the last day. He hadn't told me all trip that he loves me (but I also hadn't), and we got into a fight. In the end he told me that he just isn't sure about me and cannot imagine a future with me, that he just thinks we're incompatible and even though he loves me, he wants to break up. I couldn't believe it. Everything had been so great, and he broke up with me at the airport! Without a word I left him, turned around and went away. Just a few days later, I picked up the rest of the stuff I had at his apartment and left. He didn't say anything. I went NC and wanted to delete him completely from my life. We didn't have any contact for three months, then he wrote me a long email, apologizing for everything, telling me that he was an idiot and loves me so much, and was just scared of a commitment. He begged me to meet him, and I kept saying no, but at one point I met him again. That was in September 2014. He told me that I'm the one and that now, he's completely sure and wants to be with me forever. He talked a lot and finally, after a while, I decided to take him back.

He really seemed like a changed man. He was absolutely loving, telling me all the time how important I am and that he wants a future with me. I moved in with him again, and he started talking about having a family with me etc. We didn't fight anymore at all, and the relationship seemed to happy and healthy. Just a few months later, he asked me to buy an apartment with me, and I told him I would, but that I wouldn't do that without a bigger commitment, which means at least a promise to get married. He said of course we can get married, so I agreed to buy the apartment and started waiting for a proposal. Everything kept being great. In February 2015, he came home from work one day and told me that we should get married. Like, these days. His arguments were that I could be on his health insurance (which is much better than mine). I was a bit shocked, since I was hoping for a proposal with a ring, and for sure not a proposal for a health insurance. I told him, and he agreed that we could go look at rings. Over the next weeks, he always blew me off when I asked him if he wants to go look at rings. He always made excuses why we cannot go. Then we had a huge fight in March because I just didn't want to hear his excuses anymore. He then said he's not ready to get married and needs more time. I told him okay, but that I won't wait forever. We dropped the topic, and the next months were great again, but he didn't mention getting married anymore at all, and I did not either.

Some day in April, I was looking at some pictures of a vacation we did together on his computer, and found a folder with pictures of him and his ex-girlfriend (the one he broke up with for me in 2012). Those pictures were from 2014, exactly from the time we were broken up. I then decided to do some digging before I confront him. I checked his emails and found several emails from him to her, and her to him. Turns out they started seeing each other again while we were broken up. His emails sounded friendly but he didn't say anything flirty or 'I love you' or anything, but still, they had started dating again. Just a few weeks before we got back together, she wrote him an email asking if all this means that they should get back together. His answer was that he's sorry but that he doesn't want to be back with her. Still, he dated his ex while we were broken up, I was so hurt. Plus, I found another thing that was quite disturbing. In March 2015, he went to a birthday party of a friend (I wasn't able to go) and apparently met a girl there, a girl who doesn't live in our city or even country. She was a backpacker and just here for a few weeks, traveling around the country. Apparently they exchanged phone numbers, and were texting on Whatsapp for a week or two. I checked his Whatsapp messages, and found all those messages to her. Nothing really flirty, they were just talking like normal people or friends, but still. Turned out he even met her once for lunch, before she had to fly back to her own country. I wouldn't mind him meeting her if he had been totally clear to me from the start. He hadn't told me about her at all, and he met her without telling me. I was furious, and wanted to break up. He apologized and said there was nothing going on with her, that he had only met her that one time for lunch (which I know it's true according to the messages) and that she was just friendly. Still, I was so hurt. Also about the thing with his ex. He kept apologizing and said that I'm the only one he loves and that he will never do something like this again. I decided to let it go.

In June 2015, I went away for two weeks to visit my family. Everything had been fine, but a few days after I left, he and I had a fight because we were going to skype and then he just didn't show up to call me, and when I called him he didn't answer and didn't leave me any message til hours later, saying that he was out running errands and his phone died. We had a huge fight, and I was so angry that I asked him on the phone if he treats me that way because he wants to break up again. He then just said 'Yes', so I hung up immediately. We had no contact for the rest of the time I was abroad, and when I came back home (to where we live together) he wasn't there. Also no messages. Even days later, he wasn't home, so I decided to call his Mom because I got worried. She answered and gave the phone to him, who was with her. He was very cold and said that he's on vacation with his Mom and two friends for a week, and that he'll be back in a few days. I decided to move back to my own country. When he finally came back home, I said that I'm leaving in a few days. He was very shocked and begged me to stay. I asked him that if he wanted me to stay, why did he break up AGAIN, over nothing. He said it was because I asked him, he thought I really wanted to break up because I was so mad and kept asking him if he wants to break up. He apologized and said he loves me and doesn't want me to go, so in the end I stayed.

No problems at all between then (Early June 2015) and last week. In October, I brought up the marriage topic again (not because I desperately want to get married now, but because I want to know if we're still on the same page). He said we can get married next year, and we started talking about who we would invite etc. For the first time ever, he seemed excited about getting married. He said he doesn't understand why I want a ring andf a proposal, that he's just not that type of guy, but when I told him that I really want a ring and send him a link to a cheap ring I liked (around 150$), he ordered it, and it arrived November. Still, he didn't tell anyone about us getting engaged. Not even his closest friends. He kept telling me that it's just unnecessary, and that he thinks that marriage is just a piece of paper. I told him that he's allowed to think whatever he wants, but that if I'm important to him and if he cares about my feelings, he tells people. He did not. To anyone. And suddenly he said he also doesn't want a wedding. He said he's still fine with marrying me, but that he wants to do it at the courthouse just the two of us. I was pretty sad, but he didn't seem to care about my feelings. When I cried, he just left the room and went to sleep.

Last week, we had a stupid fight about a misunderstanding, something really not important. He got really mad about it, and suddenly changed topic and said I always say bad things when we fight. I was like what? I have never raised my voice in fights, never yelled, and never called him names. I'm sure I can be difficult at times and I'm not perfect, but I have never said things to hurt him. He also didn't explain anything more, was just super pissed and kept blaming me for stuff from the past. Then, the topic changed to us and he told me that he changed his mind about having kids and doesn't think he ever wants them. I was shocked. First the marriage thing, then kids. He asked me if I'm okay with never having kids, and I said no. He went to bed without another word, and I cried. The next day, I left for the airport, to visit my family for two weeks. He was super cold all day, even though we wouldn't see each other for two weeks. He even ran some errands to not be around me. He brought me to the airport, and we didn't talk a word. When we arrived I got off and he didn't even give me a hug or anything. He just helped me getting out my suitcase from the trunk, said 'Have a nice trip' and left immediately. I arrived to my country, and we didn't talk for a few days. He didn't reach out to me at all. One evening a few days ago I finally texted him, saying how hurt I am about everything and that I don't know what's going on right now. We texted a bit, and he didn't admit to doing anything wrong, just got really defensive and blamed me for other stuff. I got pissed and said 'If you don't like anything about this relationship and you're not even willing to work on this, then break up if you want, as you have done so many times in the past'. He got pissed and said that it sounds like a challenge and he doesn't like at all that I'm saying this. In the end I just had enough and wrote him that it's really difficult to talk on Whatsapp, but also a few other things. He then wrote he agrees that it's difficult on Whatsapp, and I wrote him back only one sentence (that I arrived to my Dad's house). Then no answer from him anymore at all. That was two days ago. Nothing since.

My flight back to him is next week. I know many people on here will probably think I'm an idiot for accepting all his crap for so long, and probably I am, but it's been very difficult for me. He can be the most wonderful guy ever, who takes care of me when I'm sick, who hugs and kisses me all the time, who wants to spend time with me all the time, who runs errands for me and gives me the feeling to be loved. But right now, and finally, I'm at the point where I think I'm not sure if I can take this anymore. I feel like I've given up so much for him, and he doesn't appreciate it at all. He doesn't care about my feelings and opinions, he only cares about them if they are the same as his. He doesn't even want to tell people we're engaged, because 'he's not that type of guy' and finds it stupid. And suddenly he says he changed his mind about ever having kids. I feel like his doormat. I still love him so much and wonder if I break up, will I ever get over him, because while there is a lot of bad, there has also been a lot of good stuff. And I'm turning 28 in a few weeks and wonder if I'm now too old to ever find anyone. I always wanted marriage and kids, and now I'm wondering if this is in the cards for me. I wonder if all this time it has been me who's wrong, or if I'm just not good enough. I wonder if he truly loves me and is just complicated as hell, or if he's just with me because, why not.

I appreciate any advice and opinion, please be kind if you can, I know that probably you've been shaking your head ever since you started reading this. I just don't know who else to talk to, I feel ashamed and so sad and lost. Thanks a lot for reading all this.
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Old 1st December 2015, 2:02 PM   #2
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You love him and he loves you but your relationship is toxic and the dynamic between you two is so unhealthy. Do you want this type of drama and roller coaster ride for the rest of your life? Is the love that you feel for him worth it?

Do a pro/con list and write down all the positives on one page and then all the negatives on another page. My guess is the con list will be more than the pro list, even if the pro list has wonderful things on it - The negatives are enough to ruin the good times.

Aren't you drained emotionally and so sick of the ups and downs?
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Old 1st December 2015, 3:15 PM   #3
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He likes playing head games and is extremely unstable. Lose this guy and, in the future, the next time a guy tells you that he's not sure about you, or the relationship, or whatever, believe him and let him go. Break ups happen for a reason. Stop prolonging the pain and move on. He is not who he led you to believe he is. This is the game he plays. He's probably doing the same thing with other women.
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Old 1st December 2015, 4:03 PM   #4
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I think he cares for you, probably doesn't want to lose you, but that he has severe commitment and intimacy issues. When you go away from him he panics and will say whatever it takes to get you back but then when you come back he feels trapped and suffocated. Talk about the future, marriage, kids, and the likes make him anxious and trapped. I think he wants to want those things but he just doesn't. It would take therapy for him to change and some people don't want to change. I know I'm happiest when I'm free and that probably says something about my mental health but I don't care. I like being free and I don't want to change.

This guy is not the one for you. He can't handle commitment or close intimate relationships. He is not going to change. Move along.
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