View Full Version : Relationship Advice (long) Please Help!
Mr. A. Nemo
11-24-2002, 09:11 AM
I'm really at my wits end, so I'm hoping the Teeming Millions can ad some insight or advice, because I really can't wrap my mind around my girlfriend and I's current problem.
So here is the background:
A couple of weeks ago she violated my trust, lied about something that I made clear (beforehand) was really important to me. Her excuse was that because she didn't think it was important, it was okay for her to lie about it. So I got pretty upset about it and we argued for a bit.
Then I did an eminently stupid thing -- I told her I didn't think I could be with someone I didn't trust. I made it sound like I wanted to break up with her. One of those stupid stupid things you say when you're upset. Anyhow, I took it back immediately, or at least tried to. I said I didn't mean it, was stupid for saying it, apologized, everything. She said it was too late, that people don't say those kind of things unless they mean it. So that conversation ends badly.
I wait a few days and call her. I need to mention that this is currently a long distance relationship because we're working far far apart, which I think adds to the difficulties, but we're able to see each other every few months or so for months at a time. So I call her and she's decidedly calmer, I explain that I love her very much, apologize again. But she says she doesn't know if she can be with someone who say what I said so easily and then take it back with the next breath. I basically make it clear to her that I want her in my life and it would crush me to lose her. She says she's confused and doesn't know what to do.
So over the next few days I call her occasionally, but she makes excuses to get out of talking with me. Finally I reach her and we're able to have a conversation. But this time she's really curt with me and (in my mind) irrational. She says I'm trying to "put everything on her" and "make her feel guilty". I didn't know what to say, because I didn't want to upset her further. But the fact is, everything is on her.. its her decision to make. Either she wants to be with me and try to forgive or she doesn't... but she won't say either way. I don't know how to deal with this.
I called her up just to talk and she says, "what do we have to talk about?"
Again I'm stunned... I say, "Why do we need anything to talk about, we used to 'just talk' all the time".
She replies, "But I think things are different now."
So I ask, "Well, should I stop calling you then?".
She replies, "I don't know."
She then says, "I have to go, I can't talk to you now. We'll talk some other time." :confused:
What should/can I do? I love her and she says she loves me. (though not recently). She gets really mad about the "You're heaping all this on me" but geez.. it is HER decision... so it IS on her... but I don't know how to say this. Secondly, I'm of the mind that she if loves/loved me as much as she said she did then this wouldn't be so much of an issue.. she'd want to try and work it out... I said something stupid, I took it back immediately and I don't know how to show any more contrition... but she seems to be leaving me in limbo here.. on the one hand I'm getting the impression she's already made up her mind... on the other hand, she won't come right out and say it? Do I give her more time, let her call me when she's ready... do I call her and try to be normal...
Thanks in advance. Please be gentle. I already know I was an ass. :smack:
Not what you want to hear, but I think it's over. All you can do is leave it alone, if she wants to talk to you she will. If she can't be bothered then move on with your life.
11-24-2002, 09:58 AM
Yup, Kal's right, I'm afraid. She betrayed your trust in the first place because she knew it was important to you -- and jumped all over your "I'm not sure I can be with you" statement because she was hoping you'd say that. She successfully manipulated you so that you would break up with her and save her the trouble.
You're better off without her.
11-24-2002, 10:05 AM
Listen to me very carefully.
You are not an ass.
This is not a healthy relationship.
You need to seriously consider breaking this relationship off.
This is what the situation looks like from my point of view: She fucks up. In the ensuing arguement she first 1. rationalizes her fuck up and then 2. latches on to the first thing you say that she could possibly get mad about and uses that to make you the bad guy so that her fuck-up gets lost in the shuffle. She is leaving you to twist in the wind so that you will hurt good and long, so that next time you catch her in a lie you own't even mention it, knowing the sort of pain she can put you through.
Furthermore, there's nothing wrong with having second thoughts about a relationship: relationships work becaiuse both parties choose, of their own free will, to be together, and in order for that choice to be worth anything, it has to be possible to choose to leave. (See my Rules (http://www.teemings.com/extras/mandajo01.html) for more on this)
All this talk about 'It's all on her" is, frankly, scary. I suspect that it is a way of dealing with insecurity--you don't have to wonder about what you should or shouldn't do because you've made it all her responsibility---you are up and saying that she gets to make all the decisions for both of you. I got bad news, boy--life isn't that easy. You are always going to be an autonomous adult, and you always have to make your own choices. The same goes for her.--she has to make the best choices for her.
It looks like you are being passive-agressive and trying to 1. give her all the power and then 2. manipulate her with how that power will hurt you. To me, this is the only thing she could even begin to be mad about, but that doesn't make up for her behavoir.
As far as what you should do, my first reaction is to tell you to not only break up wiht her, but to break off all contact for evermore. However, since you probably won't do that, my second suggestion would be to write her a letter along the lines of this:
I am not entirely sure how our relationship got so muddled up over the last few days, but I regret it. It seems to me that we both acted impulsively and said things we shoudln't have--I, for one, should not have threatened our relatiosnship in the middle of a small arguement.
I still think that this relatoinship has a great deal going for it. [list some specific good times here: NOT good things about her, good things that you did together]. I would like this relationship to continue. However, relationships only work when both partners are excited about that relationship and choose to be part of it: if we continue as a couple, I want it to because you want to be with me, not because you are worried about my feelings.
The ball is in your court. If these last few days have convinced you that this relationship will not bring you pleasure and satisfaction, then it is best that we part. If, on the other hand, you want to give it another try, please call me: I am ready and eager to give it another go.
Whatever happens, I have nothing but positive regard and best wishes for you,
Notice: this letter allows you to keep your dignity and for her to make a free and unfettered choice. The future sucess of this relationship absoutly depends upon you keeping your dignity and she making an unfettered choice.
Do not sign the letter "love" or say that you love her anywhere in there. That is passive aggressive manipulation: "But I love you baby, you can't kick a puppy that LOVES you!"
After you send the letter (email is fine), do nothing. Wait. If she wants to call, she will.
If she calls, at some point in the near fuure you must make clear to her that lying is completely unacceptable in the future. This woman clearly does NOT like to be in the wrong, and may be tempted to lie in the future in order to avoid being the one "at fault" in situations. You must make it very clear that to you, lying is always worse than whatever she might have been lying about.
11-24-2002, 12:16 PM
Nemo, first of all, has this ever happened before? I'm inclined to be a forgiving person; if this was me, I would probably give the person another chance. However, I also have a huge tendency to get hurt, and give extra chances to the point of ridiculosity (if that's not a word, it is now). If you really love this woman and really, in your heart, feel that you can make it work, you can give it another try. However, I think that this would be putting up a wall between you, one that is almost insurmountable. My advice is that you break off the relationship. And Nemo, if you need someone to listen to you, feel free to email or im me (screen name and email address are in my profile.) Good luck. :)
11-24-2002, 02:00 PM
What Manda JO said. She latched onto what you said in order to put you on the defensive. You were not wrong in that conversation. Saying "I don't know if I can be with someone I don't trust" is not an insult, it's an axiom. You should not be apologizing for it, especially in this context.
The behavior you describe is a huge, huge warning flag -- I speak from experience. Don't let yourself be manipulated. Don't stay in a relationship with someone who tries to use your feelings for her as a weapon.
In my opinion, the best thing would be to break it off immediately. Call her and tell her you don't want to date any more, or assume that's what she's already said and start moving on.
11-24-2002, 03:54 PM
Forget her. She violated your trust. Trust is the most important thing in a relationship. I cannot imagine why you are trying to get back together with her.
11-24-2002, 04:24 PM
I'm with the rest. This woman sounds like she's bad for you, A. Nemo. You should cut and run now, and don't look back. Also, print out Manda Jo's post and stick it on your refrigerator. You may have been screwed over here, but don't forget to learn from it.
11-24-2002, 04:25 PM
I liked MandaJo 's letter. I also encourage you to do this. Extend the olive branch, but don't be pushy. It looks like, in your fear of losing the relationship you are desparately grabbing at her. Nobody likes that.
However, I'm leery about the trust thing. Lack of trust can be a relationship killer. Worse, a maim-and-or-torture thing. Life is WAY WAY too short for that. If you two are to continue in relationship, that's gotta be ironed out. Go to counseling if you can. Even if you have to go without her.
11-24-2002, 06:16 PM
Mr. A. Nemo, IMO you did a smart thing when you told her you couldn't be with someone you couldn't trust. The only not-so-smart things are the things you've done after that (ie chasing after someone who doesn't care about you). She knew something was important to you, and she didn't care enough about you to make it important to her (and those of us in caring relationships can all tell you that if something *is* important to your partner, you *make* it important to you). Long story short - your first instinct was right. You care about her and want to continue the relationship, but do you want to sacrifice your self-worth to do it? Is she worth that?
11-24-2002, 06:31 PM
Can't add anything to this except to support the other posters.
Yes, I know you love her, but this relationship is not worth being in.
1. It's not worth being with someone who knows your boundaries and violates them.
2. It's not worth being with someone who can't let you step over the line because you're angry/frustrated. (Note, what you said is far different from the "stepping over the line" that results in property or physical damage. But you should feel like you can be angry or upset without wondering if that's going to shaft your relationship).
You're far better off -- and it's a lot easier -- to find a woman who can work with #1 and #2, rather than beg this woman to take you back. In fact, the way I'm reading your post, it's too late anyway.
(who's been through the love blender)
Relationships without respect, trust, and open and honest communication are bad news and a waste of time.
Take control of the situation! You choose! Your first instinct was right and what you said was not at all stupid. You will feel better about yourself in the long run.
You are not at all an asshole.
BTW, I noticed that she wants to blame you for her feelings (guilt). You are not responsible for anyone's feelings other than your own. You can't MAKE anyone feel ANYTHING without their full cooperation.
Don't rent this girl space in your head...
11-25-2002, 05:36 AM
Could you tell us some more about what she lied about? Don't if it's private, but it is hard to judge without. From what you've told us it sounds like she's been unreasonable, but its possible that what was important to you really shouldn't have been as much.
11-25-2002, 05:53 AM
A couple of weeks ago she violated my trust, lied about something that I made clear (beforehand) was really important to me.
This is a lot more important than the space you have given it. There's something very powerful that you haven't told us about.
Regardless, it's over.
Mr. A. Nemo
11-25-2002, 06:52 AM
Thanks everyone for your replies. They have been really helpful. Especially Manda JO. If you're not a mental health professional then you should be! :)
Taking a mix of advice I've decided to not contact her anymore. If she chooses to contact me in a positive manner then there is the chance of reconciliation. If not, then I'm prepared to move on.
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