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Hi back2happy, welcome
Sorry, wish we could talk on happier situations.
I'm 61yo, had two defactos in the past with kids, one when I also had young daughters. When my second defacto of 10 years broke up I came away with the conclusion that step parents, to be successful at that role need on or two crucial qualities otherwise the relationship is under severe stress...all the time. One is a nurturing kind and patient nature. This is to become a trusted friend to his/her step child. The other is a supportive strong attitude towards their partner. Such a bond will get you both through anything. The commitment level must be unbreakable for the issues that revolve around step type situations is no "Brady Bunch".
Blood rules. And this can be demanding on us. My ex GF couldn't become close to my daughters and wanted me all to herself, so much so that no holiday in ten years ever was with them. Always just me and her. They were well behaved kids. Nope, she always found a flaw. But I did remarry 7 years ago to a lady that adores my daughters and was even mother of the bride. Success. But she had no children of her own.
I haven't got any good news for you. I've survived 3 past relationships that were over 7 years long and it hurts. Time is the only healer along with some fun in dating when that time comes. The grief process is long and the waves of hurt will ebb and flow. However the philosophy is- if he loved you enough he would at least talk, explain his feelings and seek an answer...together.
My gut feeling only from your post so I could be wrong, is that him missing his daughter is too strong an emotion to bare. In hindsight might have been best to let him visit alone then the jealousy his daughter felt might not have been as obvious to her. Nevertheless the point I'm making, is that relationships can be near perfect in so many ways but in some ways, even only one, a crucial one, it can end it.
As an example that lady I lived with for 10 years had a problem, closet alcoholic and big aggression when drunk. Violence against my 13yo was the last straw. The other issue was not including them on holidays and general jealousy. In all other ways I was happy and of course I was devastated.
I wish you well. It wont be easy. But never give up moving forward. Always move forward. This period of hurt is temporary.
Topic: the best praise you'll ever get- beyondblue
Topic: the balance of your life- beyondblue
His daughter has made him do this, whether that's good or not is up for review because we don't know what his daughter is saying and even doing for him to make this decision or whether he is being pressured into deciding this.
I would not stop the idea of him returning back to you at some stage, because he may not like the situation where he now is, so at the moment get the help you need and try and stay talking with him. Geoff.