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Withdrawn and isolated after breakup

Community Member

Hi All,

I am new here, so please forgive me if I haven't figured everything out yet. I just looked through the posts here and found a few interesting ones that kind of match my issue. Still, I thought I would write to explain exactly what I'm looking for.

I have been with a man for nearly 1.5 years and we have a really close link. I love him dearly and I believe he loves me. We unfortunately fell in love while he was still with his ex. Their relationship wasn't good and he wanted out but I guess we started a bit too early and we realise that the timing hasn't been great. But what can you do, sometimes love just strikes when you least expect it.

So, fast forward, it hasn't been easy - similar to a post by AussieGal listed here. He eventually separated and he knows it's the right thing to do but since the separation, he has been kind of overwhelmed, confused, down, in pain... everything. I assume that is the grieving after something has failed although he kind of wanted to be with me. I do not quite understand this but I assume it is because he is quite a sensitive individual who doesn't like hurting people and who feels guilty for failure or perceived failure. Anyway, after trying to distract himself with fun things, he must have realised that it won't do. So the last few weeks, he has been really struggling to the point where he is now physically exhausted, immune system down, sick, struggles with sleep etc. I haven't seen him in a few days and he seems to really withdraw both physically and emotionally. I have hardly heard from him and he seems nearly non-existent. I am worried about him and I am sad that he pushes me away so much. I have not pursued him too much because I don't want to add to his pressures but I do tell him that I am there and I try to lighten his day with a positive morning message or so.

I am trying to understand if this is normal. Is he sad about the end of his relationship or is there more? Am I contributing to his stress in any way I don't know? We have great times together and he loves spending time with me (he says), so I don't know if I have done something. Is this something he just needs to get through and he will still be happy to have me on the other side? Should I do anything else? I am really confused by this intense disappearance of a person. He texts back once a day, with a few words and a smiley. But I don't know if he just does that to appease (which isn't necessary). I wish I could understand better. What to do?

3 Replies 3

Community Member

Good morning LifetimeDreamer.

Thanks for reaching out to the forum and I imagine that you are feeling confused and left wondering where things will go.

You mentioned that you have been together for about 1.5 years and you believe that your partner is grieving the end of his previous relationship?

Hi Jsua,

thank you for your reply.

Yes, sorry, that probably didn't make much sense. We've been together and they were kind of separated but not fully / properly. They had long stints of living apart and no more emotional or physical relationship but somehow he could never let go because it all wasn't properly closed. So when he did that late last year, he could finally be free. But since then, or at least the last couple of weeks, he's been surprised by all the negative feelings. He thought he would be relieved and happy but isn't. He's sure he didn't want to be with her but I think he feels really guilty about the "failure" of the marriage and he is not good at dealing with loss. He said he previously always struggled with letting go of relationships. So I assume it is just time but I don't understand what's going on right now and why is withdrawing so much. Is that just a coping mechanism?

Hey AussieGal81.

I can understand the difficulties of letting go from a previous relationship, however, he has been with you for about 1.5 years and still has issues. I find this a bit strange to comprehend unless there were children involved? Have you talked to him about why he still needs to grieve this loss even though it's in the past?