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Making sense of a breakup


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danguitartart

I broke up with my girlfriend yesterday, and I really need some clarity and advice...

I'm 52 and she's 46 - I'm going through a divorce, and she's been single for a while. We met 4 months ago in a bar and the chemistry was insane...we had a whirlwind romance and both fell for each other quickly, but over the last month or two things have turned sour. Every time we met up there would be an argument - generally it was me who was triggered resulting in us falling out. She accused me of being a very angry person, something I've never been accused of before.

She's a very intelligent, successful person who's always had wealth and a high-powered career, and I guess part of me always felt a little intimidated by her. So yesterday we talked things through and I said I felt that I was sabotaging the relationship a little as I didn't always feel "good enough" for her, and I've also been suffering from anxiety over the past couple of years which hasn't helped which has peaked in the last month. She was very hurt and as a result the relationship has ended.

She's been treated very badly over the years by men - two of her previous relationships ended after her partners went off with two of her best friends, so she has trust issues especially around other women. However, after thinking about things I realised there were a number of, what I interpret to be, red flags:

1) After meeting her out of respect I unfollowed any Insta / Facebook accounts that were inappropriate - models, boudoir photographers (I'm a wedding photographer) etc. However, after an argument she screen-grabbed some accounts I still inadvertantly followed and sent them to me via Whatsapp, to make a point.

2) She also regularly stalked female friends Insta accounts and would comment to me about posts of theirs that I'd liked.

3) She once said that it should be me who sent a morning text, because "she's not chasing me"...I said we're adults so whoever's up first and / or has some news should text?

4) She once felt intimidated in a bar because she saw a woman who she thought was my "perfect type", and was worried I'd see her.

And the list goes on. I'm not saying I've been perfect in this relationship, but it seems she's refusing to take any responsibility for the breakup. Is she right?

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basil67

Ah, I remember your other thread.  I'm so glad you broke up with her

For what it's worth, I'm a woman and if I were you, I would have broken up with her long ago.  No way would I tolerate being treated like this.   

I know you made these changes out of respect, but the thing is, pandering to someone's insecurity just gives them the message that what they are doing is acceptable.   And as a wedding photographer, it's perfectly reasonable that you'd follow your peers and their work on social media.  You let her walk all over you!

She does not have to take responsibility for her faults if she doesn't want to.  She's no longer answerable to you, rather, she's answerable to herself, or her god - whichever applies.  Thing is, if she felt that she was right all along, then of course she won't take any blame.   All you need is to make sure you're comfortable with your own decision.

 

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basil67
Posted (edited)

Also, when you meet someone who claims to have been treated badly by many, then there is a very good chance that are the constant.  Either they have a broken picker or they are the one causing all the problems.  As for this woman, I will lay money that she'll go on to list you as yet another guy who treated her badly. 

Edited by basil67
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danguitartart
29 minutes ago, basil67 said:

Ah, I remember your other thread.  I'm so glad you broke up with her

For what it's worth, I'm a woman and if I were you, I would have broken up with her long ago.  No way would I tolerate being treated like this.   

I know you made these changes out of respect, but the thing is, pandering to someone's insecurity just gives them the message that what they are doing is acceptable.   And as a wedding photographer, it's perfectly reasonable that you'd follow your peers and their work on social media.  You let her walk all over you!

She does not have to take responsibility for her faults if she doesn't want to.  She's no longer answerable to you, rather, she's answerable to herself, or her god - whichever applies.  Thing is, if she felt that she was right all along, then of course she won't take any blame.   All you need is to make sure you're comfortable with your own decision.

 

Thank you so much - and there was me thinking I was going mad!! So much so I'm almost a bit scared to receive any more communication from her - sad isn't it?!

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danguitartart
27 minutes ago, basil67 said:

Also, when you meet someone who claims to have been treated badly by many, then there is a very good chance that are the constant.  Either they have a broken picker or they are the one causing all the problems.  As for this woman, I will lay money that she'll go on to list you as yet another guy who treated her badly. 

Funnily enough, she said it's all my fault, she hates the way I've made her feel and I'm no better than all the other low-level men she's known in the past. Charming eh? 

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basil67
Posted (edited)
11 minutes ago, danguitartart said:

Thank you so much - and there was me thinking I was going mad!! So much so I'm almost a bit scared to receive any more communication from her - sad isn't it?!

No, not sad.  This is about self protection.  Please tell me that you've blocked her

 

10 minutes ago, danguitartart said:

Funnily enough, she said it's all my fault, she hates the way I've made her feel and I'm no better than all the other low-level men she's known in the past. Charming eh? 

Exactly what someone who claims to have had many terrible boyfriend will say!   Yep, you're the new one on the list now 

Do you reckon that if you'd married her, she would have been a Bridezilla - blaming everyone else when things weren't perfect.  Pity the photographer LOL

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danguitartart
2 minutes ago, basil67 said:

No, not sad.  This is about self protection.  Please tell me that you've blocked her

Exactly what someone who claims to have had many terrible boyfriend will say!   Yep, you're the new one on the list now 

Not blocked as yet, but I think I'll have to...she's very active on Twitter / X so I'm going to unfollow or delete my account, but feel it's almost an admission of defeat...😔 

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basil67

Nah, it's not defeat.  It's flipping the bird at her

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ExpatInItaly
1 hour ago, danguitartart said:

but feel it's almost an admission of defeat...😔 

Defeat....against what?

 

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Gebidozo
8 hours ago, danguitartart said:

And the list goes on. I'm not saying I've been perfect in this relationship, but it seems she's refusing to take any responsibility for the breakup. Is she right?

Well, I don’t know what you did, but for sure her behavior wasn’t good at all. Jealousy, controlling tendencies, insecurity, you name it. There is no such thing as “responsibility” for a breakup, though. People break up because they break up. It doesn’t matter now whose fault it was. You should move on.

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danguitartart
6 hours ago, ExpatInItaly said:

Defeat....against what?

 

Good question...😬

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Acacia98

By all means, unfollow her or block her on X. But do not delete your account just because of her. That would be  similar to ending your friendships and business relationships because you broke up with your girlfriend. Surely, she isn't the sun to your earth. Your life can and should continue just fine now that she's gone. Block her so that you can do what you want freely online without worrying about whether she's looking over your shoulder and how one tweet might hurt her feelings.

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ShyViolet
11 hours ago, danguitartart said:

but it seems she's refusing to take any responsibility for the breakup. Is she right?

Who cares if she doesn't take "responsibility" for the breakup?  It doesn't matter who is right.  A breakup is not a competition to see who wins.  The only important thing is that you have found out she is not someone you should keep in your life.  You are 52 years old.  You shouldn't have to put up with some of the crazy and immature behavior that she has displayed.  It's shocking that a grown woman in her 40s would think it's remotely acceptable to do some of the things she did.  She has serious issues.  Cut people like that out of your life and don't look back.

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FredEire
1 hour ago, ShyViolet said:

Who cares if she doesn't take "responsibility" for the breakup?  It doesn't matter who is right.  A breakup is not a competition to see who wins.  The only important thing is that you have found out she is not someone you should keep in your life.  You are 52 years old.  You shouldn't have to put up with some of the crazy and immature behavior that she has displayed.  It's shocking that a grown woman in her 40s would think it's remotely acceptable to do some of the things she did.  She has serious issues.  Cut people like that out of your life and don't look back.

Agree, it's a funny instinct people have to want to dunk on their ex and rub their face in the mud when in reality it probably only increases the misery. Just letting go is the answer not holding grudges.

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danguitartart
1 hour ago, ShyViolet said:

Who cares if she doesn't take "responsibility" for the breakup?  It doesn't matter who is right.  A breakup is not a competition to see who wins.  The only important thing is that you have found out she is not someone you should keep in your life.  You are 52 years old.  You shouldn't have to put up with some of the crazy and immature behavior that she has displayed.  It's shocking that a grown woman in her 40s would think it's remotely acceptable to do some of the things she did.  She has serious issues.  Cut people like that out of your life and don't look back.

You're right...some context about her checking my friend's insta accounts and commenting on posts I liked. I've worked with a couple of them over the years and have become close friends, and they supported me during my separation and divorce. My ex was very hot on boundaries, and I agree that some boundaries may have been blurred with my oversharing of my marital status with these friends. I agree it's never a good idea to share too much information as boundaries can get pushed, but all this occurred a couple of years ago, nothing untoward happened and our friendships are now back to "normal". That may explain her insecurity around those friends...however, the third person attends Bootcamp that I go to once a week and has a bit of a reputation of causing trouble. I've had very little to do with her and probably spoken to her once - my ex said she'd checked out her profile and learned a lot about her, and said she's not to be trusted, perhaps in turn highlighting her own trust issues?

Anyway, that doesn't excuse her insecurities around women but perhaps explains it in this instance...

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basil67

You're sounding a bit better this morning @danguitartart :)

1 hour ago, danguitartart said:

...some boundaries may have been blurred with my oversharing of my marital status with these friends.  I agree it's never a good idea to share too much information as boundaries can get pushed, but all this occurred a couple of years ago, nothing untoward happened and our friendships are now back to "normal". That may explain her insecurity around those friends...

Can I ask more about this?  You seem pretty reasonable to me and I can't help but wonder if she was gaslighting you.

1 hour ago, danguitartart said:

however, the third person attends Bootcamp that I go to once a week and has a bit of a reputation of causing trouble. I've had very little to do with her and probably spoken to her once - my ex said she'd checked out her profile and learned a lot about her, and said she's not to be trusted, perhaps in turn highlighting her own trust issues?

Not only highlighting her own trust issues, but don't forget how nuts it is to go 'learning about' your friend so she can warn you.  What exactly was she warning you about??  Were you ever at risk of anything bad from this friend?

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Gebidozo
4 hours ago, danguitartart said:

Anyway, that doesn't excuse her insecurities around women but perhaps explains it in this instance...

Anything can be explained. Any folly can be rationalized. Some people are extremely good at convincing others that “though they be mad, there’s method in it”, as Shakespeare puts it. It doesn’t matter that every time she has some excuses for being crazy, it’s her actual being crazy, her acting upon her insecurities, which is damaging your relationship.

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danguitartart
9 hours ago, basil67 said:

You're sounding a bit better this morning @danguitartart :)

Can I ask more about this?  You seem pretty reasonable to me and I can't help but wonder if she was gaslighting you.

Not only highlighting her own trust issues, but don't forget how nuts it is to go 'learning about' your friend so she can warn you.  What exactly was she warning you about??  Were you ever at risk of anything bad from this friend?

Of course! So I have a photographer friend (we'll call her "V") who I got to know during Covid via a Facebook group. She's married with 2 kids and we've met up quite a few times for walks, coffee and lunch. I dated a friend of hers last year and V was very supportive when that didn't work out - and was also supportive when my marriage broke down. She's a very gushy person and puts lots of hearts and kisses in her texts - something that my ex (or "A") felt broke boundaries. I'll admit in hindsight that going for long walks and getting coffee was perhaps blurring the lines a little - if my wife met up with a male friend and went for long walks and coffee, I'd feel a little uneasy. "A" felt that "V" and I were oversharing and our friendship had started to become something else...all this happened before I met "A" by the way, and I've withdrawn from "V" over the past few months ("A" is still convinced to this day that me and "V" are going to get together, which is laughable, and she still doesn't trust "V - who, in my opinion, is one of the nicest people I know, and I don't see her in "that" way).

Another friend of mine ("S") is another one who "A" has checked out on Instagram. A couple of years ago I worked a lot with "S"  - she's 22 years younger than me, and relates extremely well to the married couples I work with...and she's so easy to get on with as well and someone I consider a good friend. Again I confided a lot in "S" after my marriage broke down, and we did become close...nothing physical, but there was a certain level of intimacy there if I'm honest which I found comforting and, admittedly, quite attractive...especially as intimacy was one thing my marriage lacked - physically and emotionally. Again, all this happened long before "A" and I met, and I was totally upfront and honest with her about "V" and "S". The other day "A" said, "I notice you liked a few of "S's" posts?" Well, she's a good friend so why wouldn't I? And to add, I was naive and vulnerable during that time and felt heard by "S", but friendship is all we have and all we'll ever have, which is great.

The third person "K" is someone who goes to Bootcamp and I used to follow on Instagram, along with other Bootcampers. "A" questioned why I needed to follow her on Insta (she's young and attractive, but I genuinely followed her as she's a Bootcamper and I never messaged her or liked her posts) - "A" still felt the need to go through her profile.

I told "A on numerous occasions that I thought she was stunning and I didn't want anyone else, and yes, I've made some errors of judgement in the past, but she was unbelievably suspicious of other females. 

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FredEire
7 hours ago, Gebidozo said:

Anything can be explained. Any folly can be rationalized. Some people are extremely good at convincing others that “though they be mad, there’s method in it”, as Shakespeare puts it. It doesn’t matter that every time she has some excuses for being crazy, it’s her actual being crazy, her acting upon her insecurities, which is damaging your relationship.

Love is blind is another good saying related to this.

The only time we think someone is nuttier than a box of frogs, is when we aren't attracted to and emotionally invested in them.

If you're infatuated or in love with someone you may go to any lengths to justify their behaviour. "She only burned all my clothes in a fire because she thought I was checking out the neighbour" etc.

 

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danguitartart
2 minutes ago, FredEire said:

Love is blind is another good saying related to this.

The only time we think someone is nuttier than a box of frogs, is when we aren't attracted to and emotionally invested in them.

If you're infatuated or in love with someone you may go to any lengths to justify their behaviour. "She only burned all my clothes in a fire because she thought I was checking out the neighbour" etc.

 

Very true...I've finally unfollowed her on socials after she just posted a photo that said, "Every man is a liar". Not sure my mental health can take much more of this...

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FredEire
1 minute ago, danguitartart said:

Very true...I've finally unfollowed her on socials after she just posted a photo that said, "Every man is a liar". Not sure my mental health can take much more of this...

Well that tells you all you need to know. Anyone who is in the mindset of "every man/every woman..." is not in the position to have a healthy relationship and is on a fast track to become a cat mom or cat dad unless they get their s*** together.

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ShyViolet
10 hours ago, danguitartart said:

Very true...I've finally unfollowed her on socials after she just posted a photo that said, "Every man is a liar". Not sure my mental health can take much more of this...

She's a very immature person if she would post something like that.  You're much better off cutting her out of your life completely and never looking back.

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22 hours ago, ShyViolet said:

She's a very immature person if she would post something like that.  You're much better off cutting her out of your life completely and never looking back.

It's been a roller coaster to say the least. When we split she said it was all my fault, I'm a low level angry man who's no better than other men etc, then she posted passive aggressive messages on Twitter / X, then yesterday she messaged saying I was a lovely person and she was there if I needed support with my mental health...and today she asked if I wanted to be friends "without all the emotional whimsical stuff".

I said no :)

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1 hour ago, danguitartart said:

It's been a roller coaster to say the least. When we split she said it was all my fault, I'm a low level angry man who's no better than other men etc, then she posted passive aggressive messages on Twitter / X, then yesterday she messaged saying I was a lovely person and she was there if I needed support with my mental health...and today she asked if I wanted to be friends "without all the emotional whimsical stuff".

I said no :)

Yeah I think you did the sensible thing. Sounds like she's in a game of emotional pinball right now, not something you want to take part in.

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