Long Term Relationship ending
I had been in a relationship with my (ex) gf of 5 years. We are both in our late 20s and grew up knowing each other. We were in a long-distance relationship since she was was located in Europe to finish her studies(2 years remaining). Despite the distance we had a loving and affectionate relationship. We would be in touch with each other every day. We would visit each other each year.
I began noticing that things were a little off in the recent months. My girlfriend would suddenly break contact with me or provide me with passive aggressive messages to make me move the relationship forward. She also mentioned that she saw couples help each other by being together. A few days later she initiated contact and we resumed our relationship.
I do understand she expected some firm commitment from me. However, this was also the time I lost my job and sank into deep depression. Marriage was not my immediate priority. I started looking for jobs in Europe to be closer to her (if not in the same city at least close-by). All I needed was some time and patience from her.
Since November our relationship began to deteriorate. She has a crucial exam in January and wanted me to be with her to support her. Although I was happy to take a break and support her, I was not happy with the way she was communicating. She would frequently have an emotional outburst and blame me for not being supportive, not moving the relationship forward and being selfish. I would find it difficult to control her anger. She would send multiple texts and phone calls where she would be abusive. Over these manic episodes I would be patient and try to rationally explain the situation and try to calm her (to no avail). These episodes would last for hours. She also would demand that I come to her to help her. In the end, I would be scared to take any calls or messages from her.
Breaking up was difficult since she would threaten self-harm. At the same time, I still loved her and wanted to help, but she was making the environment hostile. She also refused to seek any professional help. A week ago, during one such manic episode, I asked her roommate to call emergency services and intervene. Since then we have had no contact.
Currently I have guilt for not communicating well and moving the relationship forward, sorrow for not being there to help her and wonder if I could have communicated better. I would like any advise on how to cope with this situation and thank you for reading this.
So it seems clear to me from your account that your GF has been waiting for some serious commitment from you. It can be frustrating for her to wait, and wait, I've seen this many times when I was in your age group and in the end the relationship is abandoned as their friends start to have children and settle down or tired of single life. It occurs more often nowadays when the female (usually) enters her late 30's and her time clock is running out. My friend then 39yo and his GF 38 were feuding over this very topic as she wanted kids and his answer was, "you can have them in your late 40's now- technology fixes that sort of stuff". Well they did have 2 children in her early 40's luckily after much protest from her. Sadly the marriage never recovered from the contempt that developed.
The other aspect however is her mental health if indeed her behaviour is mania, I cant judge that but her frustration levels are clearly high anger and resentment. You cannot help her much on the other side of the world and threatening self harm isnt helping you. Getting professional help is her responsibility no matter her illness. Stubbornness is something we come across a lot here.
It seems to me you have a choice. If you really love this girl why is it you cannot make a stronger commitment at the moment and defuse her sorrow and give her the future she craves? You said "but she was making the environment hostile" well was she making it hostile because she wasnt getting the future she wanted? Is that understandable? You say you lost your job and fell into depression, a tough time for you for sure, but I have depression and bipolar and that is a period I try to get closer to my partner because it is a team effort, you get through these bad times together, not withdraw or put things on hold because you are unwell or jobless. With that kind of thinking she has likely concluded there will be no ideal period for you that will result in commitment. In her eyes there will always be an obstacle.
On the flip side I'd like to address your guilt. Here are two threads that might help. Just read the first post of each.
Thank you for your reply. I found it very helpful. You are correct in identifying that my GF does want a greater form of commitment from me and the hostility from her side is due to this.
My concern with this is, that her approach towards me has been that of being very aggressive and especially verbally abusive. I admit that I have withdrawn from her when I was depressed but I also felt hard to be close to her during this period since I had been at the constant end of an emotional outburst. I may have kept her waiting without a firm commitment but I do not think such hostility is warranted. All her problems in life is blamed on me. This has made me wonder, if she is being so hostile now, will she keep up with this behaviour after we get married and start a family together? If we get married now, what guarantees the fact that this might occur during our marriage?
I have no way to address this with her since flatly denies its existence nor does she think how it affects me or our relationship. I can't keep being afraid of her and keep guessing when her mood might change. This has led me to pull away from a deeper commitment especially when I am unable to have a meaningful conversation with her.