Second time around
I've been with my partner (now ex) for 4 years. We were friends for 2 years before we got together and she's always been in heterosexual relationships before me.
About 18 months ago, she broke up with me because she said that she wasn't attracted to me anymore but that she as confused because she hasn't loved anyone as much as she loves me. So I gave her time to think and after about a month before she came back and said she made a mistake and she loves me so much. She said she hasn't figured out the attraction thing yet, maybe its because of her depression which she was always struggling with even before we got together. While we were on a break she went out with someone and slept with him to see if 'there was anything there' but she said she just felt empty and that's what prompted her to come back. Few months down the track I found out she was sending these flirty messages to another guy and she said that she was doing it for me because maybe she just needed to feel sexy again - this hurt me a lot and she said it didn't do anything for her anyway so maybe it just is her depression still.
So we stayed together up until a month ago when she moved interstate and a week later she ended it and said that things haven't changed at all. 6 months ago, we bought a house together and started building a life together so I thought we were going on the same direction. I gave her her space and didn't want to push her "emotions" because she always said it would pressure her when we talk about her feelings and that there isn't anything I could do about it. So I just supported her as best I could.
She said that she doesn't want to work on the relationship anymore because she doesn't think it will change and that she doesn't see a future anymore. I asked her to come to counseling with me but she refuses and says she isn't in the mental capacity to do it right now, maybe not ever. I started going on my own and have learnt SO MUCH about relationships and how they are largely affected by your past family relationships etc.
To me, I know that if she could learn or just realize what I'm learning now that we could make it work because she says that she loves me more than anything - there just isn't that 'spark' but she doesn't think we can get it back. This is why I am at a loss because I know if she just gave counseling a chance, she could at least be at peace with herself even if means we won't reunite.
Dear Pandemonium ~
I'm very sorry you are faced with this heart-breaking situation. Unfortunately when a relationship reaches this stage one person at least is going to be very hurt, and through no fault of your own it's you. In fact I'd say throughout you have behaved with love, consideration and restraint.
Your ex on the other hand has kept pulling away. While depression may have something to do with it your are still left alone. I can remember when my depression was realy bad I'd loose touch with myself, and not know if I loved my partner, or even if I was still capable of love. I felt very isolated, and at the same time found being with others was simply too much pressure, I needed to be alone.
While I can accept depression affects people in different ways I was never tempted to sleep with another - quite the reverse. The same holds true for flirting, it simple was not part of how I was feeling.
I know you feel that if your ex went to counseling things might improve, or she might at least gain some insight into matters. Unfortunately there realy does need to be a desire not only to attend, but to learn, and your ex does not seem likely to attend, or benefit if she did.
In any partnership there has to be trust and care. Your ex showed little care for you or the damage her actions would do to you by leaving and being with another. Irrespective of any illness she does not sound like someone you can rely upon. Her behavior seems a constant pattern. Flirting with another for your sake seems a very long stretch.
It is very natural to hope that things will get better, going on your post I'd have to say that seems a bit unlikely for long term, though perhaps I misunderstand.
It may be hard for you to realize at the moment but you post shows you as a person who has an awful lot to offer to another, and if things do not improve with your ex I'm sure you will find the sort of person you need and deserve.