When to let go?
My partner of 12 years had become increasingly alcohol dependent over the last 3 or so years, with it increasing moreso over the last 6 months. She has a high profile/high stress job, but is also highly functioning and doesn't see it as an issue. I didn't act on it as in the past it has caused arguments, she was always a happy drunk, but would become irritating as we wouldn't be in the same head space.
To deal with her work stress, I would try and plan trips to force a 'work-life' balance. This had been working well as we could spend quality time together. However, in January of this year on holidays it wasn't the same- I could feel her stress and would let her drink as it seemed to immediately ease her conflict, but I would then become agitated in her company.
Six weeks ago, we had a major fight and she repeatedly told me I wasn't there for her when she needed me and I was very cold towards her. She was probably correct with her analysis, but I felt I never saw her with her working hours and when I did see her it was always with alcohol. She said she felt traumatized after our fight and moved out. Initially for a few days and then came back, but now its been about a month. She says she cant come back to our house as it's too emotional and she is not in love with me anymore. I feel we've neglected our relationship and both have some work to do on ourselves.
I dont have strong family or social support networks as we did absolutely everything together. My family is also interstate. She has strong family connections and has recently signed up to dating/social sites, with the intention to move on. She has also been spending more time at work social events.
I'm staying in our house, but I cant sleep, Im emotional, irrational and cant stop crying or thinking about the situation and starting to feel quite depressed. I am getting help for sleep and anxiety issues but my therapist is currently away.
I don't want to give up on our relationship, as I still love her and know that she is my soul mate. But, if she doesn't feel the same and cant come home, what do I do? Do I give her space and focus on getting myself together and continue hanging on to hope that she might come back? or do I accept that it's over and she will never come back, as she 'cant promise anything'? I feel like she is seeing someone else, but I could also be paranoid. I do feel totally alone and confused.
Thanks for listening
Hi Eddie, if she only contacts you when you believe she's been drinking, that raises a red flag and I'm pleased her credit card has been stopped.
I wonder why she's asking you whether or not you'll be able to get through this because she seems to be putting the ball in your court all the time.
If she knows about the legal system and wants to settle 'amicably' just be careful about what you do sign and whether or not you have legal representation to support you, because it's the house and other finances, so this settlement is rather large.
Thank you for your reply. It is certainly possible that she doesn't want me to have competent legal help and is trying to bluff me around this. I have some travel coming up with work in the next 2 weeks, so once that is done I will certainly be making a time to get the house on the market/finances sorted and initiate mediation (I'm not sure what will happen if she won't agree to this).
I guess if she really wanted to get back together and was truly interested in seeing the dogs she would call or try to meet face to face. All communication has been done via text message.. Anyway, let's see what this week brings.
Thank you for your reply. She certainly continues to put the ball in my court - I'm no expert but I feel like it has a tinge of narcissism attached. Sure, I have certainly been struggling with my thoughts and feelings throughout the break-up and everyday is a different day, but I feel like she keeps putting it back on me as the one that is not well and when I get better then things between us will get better? Perhaps one day we will be friends, but I find it highly unlikely at the moment as there are still unresolved issues and emotions running high.
Anyway, let's see what becomes of this week.
I'll be back in touch soon.
Hi Croix and Geoff,
Last week things certainly became interesting. Every day I was receiving messages asking how things were and how the dogs were, wanting photos and constant updates as well. Then, she asked to see the dogs on the weekend (last weekend) and I said it wouldn't work as it was last minute and it was too late to organise transport. I also leaving to go interstate, so I had arranged and paid a petsitter etc. She said she would come and pick them up, so I said I'm surprised that she has asked to see them as she couldn't have them last time, isn't paying anything for where there are living or any other expenses, ie insurance, vet etc.
So, it then blew up and she said I was attacking her and that she's offered to pay for them blah blah (this is completely false as she told me she couldn't pay for anything).. anyway, it doesn't matter -it went on and on and became quite aggressive. I wanted this to stop as I could feel my self slipping back into a bad head space again. I have a really important week this week in terms of my career development and didn't want to miss another opportunity. So, I blocked her number....I didn't hear anything for a few days, so I thought maybe she had got the message. Anyway, last night it was crazy, I had about 30 missed calls from various numbers, emails saying to call her urgently etc etc. I got in touch with her and asked what had happened (I think she was drunk) and it started all over again....Suggested that she left everything and didn't pay anything because I needed space? Completely conflicting and confusing messages and I've been made to feel like it's all my fault. Yes, I have put off selling the house and sorting out of finances until I got through my recent workload and I plan to book in a mediation time next week, with her disapproval. I didn't have time or the coping skills to be able to deal with everything.
I feel her expectations are that it was ok for her to leave but we would continue to be as we were, except it would be ok for her to also be in another relationship? I don't want to be friends with her at the moment as it is just way too painful, I've told her this - that it may take months, years or never? I don't know, but right now it can't happen. Am I being realistic?
Thanks for your support
On another note, if this week works out well I will be moving interstate in a few months or so. Ideally with the dogs. I've thought about different scenarios - 1. we work out a way of sharing - one month with each, 2. we separate the dogs and have one each (I think this will be too traumatic for them as they have never been without one another), 3. I have them full time, she can visit for as long as she wants or 4. she has them and I move without them (this would be extremely traumatic for me and the worst case scenario). In terms of the separation, the dogs are considered property, so this could get very interesting.. How can you put a value on 2 dogs that have been loved and cared for as family members?
Hi Eddie, thanks for getting back to us,
If you do move interstate you can't separate the dogs, they won't eat and will be looking out for the other one to return, I don't think that's fair for all concerned.
I can't tell you what to do, but if it was me I'd be taking the 2 interstate because if she is in another relationship her mind will be taken away and perhaps they will get another dog/s.
The quicker everything is finalised the better because it's holding you back from moving forward.
Thank you for your reply. So, I am really confused now and feel myself slipping back into some bad habits. The anxiety and insomnia has come back and I feel like I've gone back to where things were at months ago, just after the initial break up.
She is being incredibly nice, has offered for me to stay at her rental (she wouldn't be there though) until I find a until this place is sold. She wants to help organise all finances and help pay for things now? She wanted a reaction from me when she didn't pay the mortgage and I didn't give it. But, I feel like this is another way to establish Control. As last week, it was a completely different story after I blocked her number for a few days - she went out of control. I am confused, as soon as she offers help, the crazy idea that we could get back together comes into my head.
I also think she is worried as she knows I have no reason to be in Melbourne anymore and is certainly thinking that I may take the dogs away.
I know that once the finance side is finalised things will be better, but why is she offering to help me in such a way?
Thank you for your reply. An update... This week brings a completely different response from her - no contact. I haven't had a single message from her in a week? No message to ask about the dogs, no want to see them, nothing regarding any of the finances.... Previously I felt this would have been a good result. However, I'm still thinking about her. I'm interstate at the moment, so to a certain degree a little away from places that trigger memories - but she is still constantly in my thoughts. The cycle continues - anger, sadness, confusion, depression - it just seems to keep on going, just like it was months ago. Professionally there are opportunities opening up for me, but I just find I can't focus because I can't get her out of my mind..
Will I ever get through this?
Hi Eddie, try and work out whether it's worth considering if there could be some way to patch this up amicably or whether it's draining all your energy and need to move on, because if you're thinking about something that isn't going to happen, then is it taking all of your time and not allowing you to move on.