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Tough time

Community Member

I've had a pretty rough 6 months.

I met a guy through a dating website. We immediately clicked, almost like we had known each other our whole lives. He's an educated man. Had separated from his wife several months prior to our meeting. He told me he had been unhappy in the marriage for a long time, sleeping in separate rooms for a number of years, tried councelling unsuccessfully, so he made the decision to separate, not what his wife wanted.

So we started dating. We had an excellent open relationship. Both of us have a history of depression. And we helped each other with that. I did have an insecurity, fearing he would go back to his wife, but he constantly reassured me that was never going to happen because he had been too unhappy with her for too long. He told me he loved me and never felt love like this before. I was apprehensive about telling him I loved him too because of my insecurity, but I did in fact love him, on a level I had never experienced.

We decided that for our relationship to move forward, it was time for him to be clear with his wife that he was moving on with someone. Well. After talking with her, he visited me and immediately broke up with me. He walked away from me. Blocked my phone number. Deleted Facebook. Blocked my emails. Completely disappeared from my life in the matter of an hour. To say I was completely blind sided was an understatement. And it broke my heart in a big way. ( to complicate matters his relationship with his wife did involve children). I have been left frustrated with no answers and no closure. I became depressed.

Shortly after this I unexpectedly lost a very close friend. And this exacerbated my depression. I do see a psych. But I struggle daily with sadness, it's almost all consuming. Functioning at work takes every ounce of energy I have.

I guess I would love some advice on how to let go of the man I love. My brain knows he is gone and the relationship is over, but every day my heart hopes he will come back. I don't want to hope anymore. So if anyone could offer any advice on how to stop hoping, I would be forever grateful. I would love to feel some relief from the sadness, just for one day.

26 Replies 26

white knight
Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi brokengrl, welcome.

Trauma of the kind you are experiencing is really tough.Only some people go through it in a love affair but all humans go through it in life because it all fits under the grief umbrella.

Add to that your man returning to his wife. Some humiliation there.

I'd suggest to you that he wasnt lying to you that he felt he'd never return to her. Like in a really bad arguement despised her. But like all arguements sometimes it reverses and common ground is found. The father in him would have missed his full time fatherhood also. They obviously came to an agreement and that agreement meant immediate cut off from you. This would be really hurtful.For him not to at least comfort you in some way questions my mind as to his compassion for other humans. He would have known your level of hurt.

So, moving on. How?. Like all trauma grief takes time, however, that doesnt mean you should deprive yourself of laughter, entertainment or friendship. For me l could only move on fully when l found the affection of another. You might not think so at this raw period but there are other guys just as worthy of your heart.

Be aware of a possible mistake on your part...taking him back if he feels his marriage wont work. It often happens. You are not a ping ball.

Google the following

Topic: the best praise you'll ever get- beyondblue

Tony WK

Hi White Knight

thank you for taking the time to reply.

I try to keep going with daily activities. I still catch up with friends. Go out to movies, and have booked an overseas holiday. I try to find pleasure in activities, I just don't feel it, I guess that's the depression.

I found his behavior quite cruel. I could respect his decision to return to his family if he had taken the time to explain. But to blind side me then disappear off the face of the planet is cruel. I don't understand how a human could do that to another human, especially if they cared for them. It's a tough road.

To put a time line into perspective, it was 4 months ago that he ended things and I never heard from him again, and I don't believe I will ever hear from him again. Any relationship we had is destroyed.

I will look at the topic you recommended.

Thank you

Hello Brokengrl

Welcome to the forum. Tony is right, all grief takes time to heal and that's not what you want to hear. I agree this was a heartless and selfish act to walk out on you in that fashion. I can only imagine your pain and distress. You have survived four months without him which means you have some resilience and strength. It's a great start.

I am trying work out whether this man was using you to make his wife take him back, or if he did really care and bowed to his wife's ultimatum to return, perhaps on threat of not seeing his children again. Does either of these two scenarios seem real to you? And of course there is the third option, he missed his children too muc and wanted to be there while they grew up. And you will never know.

What to do now? I think you have answered your own question to some extent. Get on with your life and let time soften his memory until you can live without hurt. I make it sound so easy and of course it's not. There is no other option but to go on living your life. If you are finding this very distressful what do you think about talking to a grief counsellor. Your loss has not been happening gradually and in a way you could start to get accustomed to it. It was done and dusted in the blink of an eye and that was a dreadful shock to your system. I see Tony calls it trauma and that's what it is.

You said you had problems with depression. How is that going? Do you see anyone or take any antidepressant medication? If not, do you think it would help to talk to a psychologist, GP or counsellor? Sometimes talking about these hurtful things helps to make sense of them, to understand how they can affect you and help you to walk this path until you can give away the hurt.

Another way is to record your thoughts in a journal. I write in my journal spasmodically. Sometimes every day but more often when I am most upset and need to talk. Yes I'm talking to myself but it sounds quite different when it's written down and I read it. Have you ever tried this?

Writing in to BB has been a great help to many people. I hope you will find it a safe place to talk about your sadness, your hopes and anything else you can think of.


Hi Mary

also thank you for taking the time to read and respond to my post.

I do believe it is possible she may have said she would stop him seeing the kids if he stayed with me. The night he ended the relationship with me, I could see the tears in his eyes, but he just wouldn't talk to me. In hindsight I recognize he was extremely stressed, run down and frequently unwell, lack of appetite, chronically tired. I think the stress, mixed with his complete devotion to his kids meant going back to the familiarity and comfort of his family was his choice rather than face further stress that comes with divorce. I do believe his love for me was genuine, but not strong enough to sustain him through the stress.

Yes I do take antidepressant medication and see a psychologist. I have tried journaling which helped for a while. However since losing my friend unexpectedly I havnt journaled. In some way I feel like writing it down and seeing how real it is will be too overwhelming for me to emotionally deal with atm.

Depression is a tough Illness to fight. I'm finding this forum very helpful. I feel I can freely post my feelings without judgement. And by reading some of the other posts, very sound advice is offered to people who are struggling. I do feel pretty low at the moment. Not to the point where I would contemplate harming myself. But I don't feel much hope in regard to finding happiness in the future. Having suffered these losses. I worry that I won't feel better.

Hope this makes sense.

Hello Brokengrl

You make perfect sense. The loss of anyone dear to you can be devastating. I read posts on BB that make me want to weep hearing the pain that others are experiencing. Sometimes I feel frustrated because I have only words to help you. Do you remember the song "It's only words"? Not sure if that's the right title but every time I hear it I feel the anguish in the words.

I often wish I could reach through the computer and hold the hand of the person I'm talking to. Since we haven't got that far with technology I can only ask you to know that metaphorically I am holding your hand. BB certainly is a judgement-free zone.

Journaling works in different ways for everyone. What I do is write down what is happening but do not read it again, possibly for some time. Writing your thoughts and putting them away can be a way to acknowledge your losses and park them until you are ready to look at what has happened.

Occasionally I have read my journal from years ago for the first time and been quite shocked. Not at the hurt or whatever but at what I have written. I find, for me, the written memories are different to those I have adapted to over time and it's then I can look back and see how far I have come. Yes, journaling can be difficult if we read it straight away. Maybe putting it away to read later is symbolically filing those things that hurt until a later date.

Having a MH professional to talk to can be helpful and reassuring. It's another safe place to let go of your hurt and anger.

That wretched illness can make us believe all sorts of things. The trick is to learn what is real and normal. Grief is natural when someone goes out of your life for whatever reason. It's good you can see, with the benefit of hindsight, the stress your BF was experiencing. Recognising his distress can help you because, as you say, he really did care for you. Being pulled in two directions must have been a huge strain on him. In reality it may have been all he could do at the time to say he was leaving and go.

When you start to see the situation from the other's point of view I believe you are on the path to recovery. You may love him for the rest of your life but the hurt will fade over time. I sometimes talk about forgiveness. Not because the other person wants or needs it, but because it means you are letting go and healing. Now you can see through your distress and look at his. This is you finding the light at the end of the tunnel.


Community Member

I think I'm really struggling with resentment. I feel so angry that I was bought into this situation when he quite clearly wasn't sure his marriage was over.

I feel resentment that he has essentially gone back to live this perfect family life, completely unaffected while it feels like I was left behind a crumpled broken mess on the floor. I don't at all resent that the children now have a complete family environment, I know how important that is. That is probably the only good thing that came out of this situation.

Is it normal for me to feel such resentment towards him? I feel like he has no clue about the impact his actions had on me. He appears to have moved on with out a care in the world. I wish I could have 5 minutes with him, just so he can see the damage he caused and so I could vent to him all the things I want to tell him. I know this opportunity will never happen and my psych tells me I need to move forward without ever getting closure. However I am definitely an over thinker and the thoughts fill my mind often. I have come up with a thousand different scenarios to explain why he left. But I think this is actually starting to slowly get better.

I'm just left with this feeling of frustration and resentment. How come he gets the perfect life when he was the one who did the wrong thing. I never would have got involved or interfered if I had known their marriage still had a chance.

Hello Brokengrl

You have a right to feel angry at being hurt in this fashion. It is normal and in fact very healthy. I don't know if you have ever heard of the stages of grief. I cannot remember them exactly but they are something like this. Shock, denial, bargaining, guilt, anger, depression, acceptance. Not necessarily in that order. We go from one emotion to another, being angry, then depressed, accepting the situation then feeling guilty. We stay in some states longer than others but it is all the normal way of grieving. No need to give yourself a bad time.

He may have thought his marriage was over, you will never know. Knowing may not be all you would hope for as it will not change the situation or mend your hurt. You are on the right track for healing even though it hurts like hell at the moment. I want someone, who has hurt me badly, to knock on my door and explain and apologise. This is not a romantic situation, far from it, but the harm done to me is enormous. I doubt I will ever know the reason and I believe that person will never know the reason or understand the damage I have received. I can only help myself and put aside wishful thinking about an apology. It will not happen and it adds to my sorrow to think about it.

So in many ways we are both in the same boat. I find my volunteer work of great help because I am giving to someone else in need. At least I hope so. For you, going to work every day is the same as my volunteer stuff. It gives us a focus for the day and in some ways puts aside the grief, at least for a short while. You do need some respite now and then. Rest when you can because grief is exhausting.

Reasons really do not matter because the hurt will not change. You may believe he acted with the greatest integrity and was noble and honest, or you may think he took you for a ride, used and abused you. Which makes more sense or is it something in between? It just doesn't matter. No explanation will help you. Sorry to bang on about this. Let the hurt wash over you and flow away.

My GP once told me it was OK to grieve, but only once a day. I could sit down and think about the situation for either one hour or half an hour, cannot remember which. After that I had to get up and do something completely different and not go back to the subject until next day. Use an alarm clock to tell you when to stop. It does work and it is less exhausting than the constant worry. Have a go.


Hello Brokengrl, reading your post took me back many yrs to an episode of depressin that lasted several yrs. The shoe was on the other foot, sort of, in that my husband of 13yrs was playing around with his best mates sister and she fell pregnant, so of course my now ex had no choice but to make a life with her..sadly we had no kids...how I wished we did thru that bout of depression. And how I imagined their perfect life, whilst I was left with nothing.

What can I say. Time has healed, and I no longer have many feelings at all. It was a long time getting here though. My life did move on..after about 18 mths of those thoughts holding me back. But you have to grieve, & everyone is different. It is amazing to see couples split up, only to be back in new relationships within mths or even weeks with some? It can't be healthy, but maybe that is how some people deal with love lost. Lucky them? I don't know, but I do know that I'm not one of them.

About his perfect life. From what I can see, his life would be far from perfect. He has gone back to a toxic relationship and is most likely back into the same situation he described to you, separate rooms, no love, no understanding etc for the sake of the kids. The tears in his eyes when he told you show that he did have true feelings for you and that he knew full well what he was forced to give up...a new start with an understanding partner. So perhaps he is also thinking of the perfect life he has forsaken. No one is a winner here. Not him, not his wife, & you are certainly not atm.

You said that the relationship you had is destroyed now. He is not the one for you. So you know that you must move forward. It is great that you have been planning ahead, a trip is something to look forward to. I know it isn't easy, but put some energy into thinking about this, the things you'll do, the people you'll meet. Perhaps fate has you meeting the one on this trip?

It is totally normal that you are feeling this resentment. You had a double blow with losing your friend at the same time. It is natural that depression has overtaken your feelings. Is it natures way of making you deal with these losses, as part of grieving? It is common to overthink and catastrophise when depressed. With time you will be able to think differently of the past, & hopefully take in some lessons from it all.

You WILL feel better & find happiness in the future. I have found love & laughter after it was SO black for SO long. I have my own kids now!

Hey Jugglin

thank you so much for your reply.

Its nice to think that this has happened to other people and they get better.

I read other posts and listen to other people talk about how their ex would text them on and off. Something I found interesting is how he has had absolutely no contact with me. A lot of the time when you're inlove, it's like the other person is your drug, and having contact with them is like getting a fix.

At the moment I feel like I meant nothing to him. Because he gave me up so easily.

Anyway. Just needed a vent tonight.