- This topic has 83 replies, 14 voices, and was last updated 5 years, 2 months ago by baccalieu.
May 25, 2017 at 12:51 pm #688224Northern StarGuest
Your boyfriend sounds like a selfish turd (sorry), and I think you’re definitely experiencing a lot of regret for putting everything else to the side for his sake for two years.
You deserve better.May 25, 2017 at 12:51 pm #688225va-in-nyParticipant
With my ex, we were supposed to move to another state after I graduated college. But, he could never make plans with me regarding the move. He’d always say “We’ll figure it out” or “We have time for that” and right before everything imploded, he refused to appoint the movers to get the stuff from my place (it was military related). I just couldn’t understand why. My situation was different than yours is (he was cheating and never intended to move ME to be with him), but looking back, I should have seen the signs. He pushed back without saying why because he never intended to move… and because he was a coward.
You are not furniture in someone else’s life. You do not need to sit on the side where everyone makes the decisions for you. You are an equal part of this relationship and he’s treating you like curtains. Stand up and take control. It will hurt, sure. I KNOW it will. But, you’ll be happier in the end. I’m certain of it.May 25, 2017 at 12:55 pm #688226va-in-nyParticipant
LW: “To be fair to him, he did tell me a few times before, but it’s so strongly embedded in me that I’m worthless because of my weight that I couldn’t hear it. I’ve finally come to see it differently and to want to change for my health, but he’s not really hearing it.”
Okay. Yet, he’s still setting you up for a conditional relationship. It’s “you change and then we’ll see.” So instead of doing it for you, in the back of your head, you’ll be doing it because you know what the consequences are. He won’t stay. Horrible.
Stop factoring him in. Do what YOU want for YOU.May 25, 2017 at 12:55 pm #688227SkyblossomGuest
As a parent of two I can tell you that he isn’t fit to be a parent. Parenting requires flexibility and it requires you to be patient and do what you need to do even if you are tired, even if you are exhausted. When children are young you need to build a lot of schedule around them because they can’t handle being over tired or over hungry. They have small stomachs so will often need a snack to get them through to a meal. They have rapid growth and so need extra sleep. You find yourself organizing your life around their naps and their sleep. They can’t really organize their lives around your boyfriends rigid schedule. He has to be flexible because a small child is hungry when they are hungry and tired when they are tired. As they get older there is more flexibility around food and sleep but then you have school and activities. You have to manage homework and the schedules that come with activities. If you boyfriend likes to eat at a set time and that’s when the activity begins or ends how would he handle it? You would end up doing it all. He would see it as okay to dump all of the work of a child on you because you handle being tired better than he does, or so he says. You’d also have to be the one who was flexible because he isn’t capable of flexible. You would be a single parent in a two parent household. I can’t imagine trying to parent with someone who can’t be flexible. Children add a huge level of stress to a relationship and your boyfriend is having trouble handling average stress. Moving is a slight stress compared to raising a child. If he isn’t flexible enough to move, without huge levels of anxiety and stress, he isn’t fit to parent.May 25, 2017 at 6:22 pm #688257haggithGuest
As someone who went through a PhD program, you have NO idea how bad this is going to turn as he advances in the program; and don’t get me started during dissertation/job hunt. With all the quirks you mentioned and neediness, he will suck the life out of you. He’s planning to start his career in the US? So he KNOWS he’ll leave his parents behind; why the excuses?
You can’t see this through because you’ve lost your identity. It is really sad to read one of the reasons you stay is because you he’s the only one who’ll fuck you. There are plenty of decent men out there who will be willing and eager to hold you, cuddle you and encourage you to become your better self. There is more to life than being a voluntary martyr. You don’t have an equal partnership. Please, for your own sake, remove yourself from this situation; it will hurt for a while but, trust all the people who are writing here: you’ll be better off starting your own lifeMay 25, 2017 at 6:52 pm #688258KateKeymaster
I’ve told him all this and then he feels better for a while, but then sometime later he gets distant and reluctant again and says “but I’m just so worried, what if nothing changes, what if we don’t work out?”
The problem here is that he is not ok with your relationship now. He thinks he would only be satisfied with it if things change. If YOU change. This bullshit about a 10-month lease, come on. Of course you can’t find a place with a 10-month lease. And if you do, he won’t be happy with it. He’s saying whatever to make sure this isn’t going to work. He’s sabotaging you going back to finish your education, which is incredibly fucked up, because he’s betting you’ll stick around. But for what? To perpetuate the endless cycle of trying to convince him you’re good enough? I’m telling you right now, you never will be. Because he’s messed up! I’ve been there. I’ve been with a guy for whom nothing would ever be good enough. It’s just an awful kind of purgatory.
I know you think this is the only way you can live, but it’s NO way to live. And I promise you, when you’re determined to stick something out that’s not working and is really bad for you, and it gets taken away from you, as in a job loss or a breakup, that’s a wonderful gift. You realize it didn’t define you as a person, you don’t need it, and you can move forward and be happy as you wait for that right situation to come along. You can’t see that until you’re out of it, but it’s true. You would be fine.
He IS breaking up with you, like other people said. He’s waiting for you to be miserable enough to end it. All he’s offering is the choice to stick around and cater to him completely while abandoning your own future. For a while at least. Marriage, kids, moving to the US together – none of that is happening. Guys like him talk about shit they will never actually do.
This makes me so sad and mad, because there’s a guy out there who will love you and think you’re beautiful and prioritize your needs, and you’re wasting your life on this guy who doesn’t respect you.May 25, 2017 at 9:26 pm #688271FannyBriceGuest
Every update you write is just more heart breaking. Reach out to your old friends, the ones you say you’ve neglected for him. Rebuild your support system (but only with people who are good for and to you!). It will help you break free.
You’ve temporarily lost yourself, and that’s scary. But being this dude’s doormat forever is not a tenable alternative to finding yourself again. It’s hard and it’s scary and it’s so, so, so worth it.May 25, 2017 at 10:01 pm #688274JuliecatharineGuest
This breakup is coming. It has to, truly. What you have is toxic. You can do an extended breakup dance-one that lasts years-or you can learn to believe that you deserve better. There are some serious lessons to be learned here. Do yourself a favor and learn them *well*.
FWIW I spent four years with a mentally ill person. It took me years to get over the damage I did to myself in that relationship but the fact is I wouldn’t have been in that situation if I hadn’t been avoiding my own stuff. I would strongly recommend therapy. Your sense of self worth is not what it should be.May 25, 2017 at 10:16 pm #688277dinocerosParticipant
Yes, it can be unpleasant to go from having a partner to not having someone to sleep next to, or have sex with, or whatever. But it doesn’t kill you. I think you’ve built up this massive fear of feeling that discomfort. Of course you’ll be sad and miss things, but eventually you won’t. Unless a relationship lasts forever (this one won’t), everyone who gets into a relationship will eventually have to experience moving on from someone and missing them. Putting it off isn’t going to make it feel any better. You’re just going to sink more time into something that’s making you unhappy and going nowhere.
This is unrelated to what you’re saying about getting healthy, but if you compare this to someone exercising or eating vegetables — is it fun to eat broccoli instead of a burger? No. But in the long run, will you feel better having eaten nutritiously rather than junk food? Yes. You have to be willing to experience discomfort (which we all do as humans) for a period of time in order to have a better and happier life.
I know it feels like you wouldn’t know how to function but you would. Think of those people who’ve been married for 50 years and lose their spouse. They figure it out. And some of these are people in very traditional marriages where the spouses really were their entire world. If they can do it, you certainly can.May 27, 2017 at 12:56 am #688395Leslie JoanGuest
Oh dear gawd, LW, with everything you write it just sounds worse and worse. This guy sounds like an even worse version of a former brother in law whom my sister finally divorced after 20 miserable years. A similar disability, for which treatment can help manage the symptoms, but oopsie, he refuses to admit he’s got a problem, and instead basically forces his partner to revolve around his needs and serve his obsessions.
LW, it chilled me that he can insist that you do stuff for him, but he won’t do the same for you because you can stand being tired and he can’t. Well, boo fricken hoo for him. I know that you think you love him and that he’s your best friend, but he is already poking at your weak spots in the cruelest way possible, and holding you at arms length and everything everything everything is all about him. If, heaven forbid, you ever had kids with this guy, every bit of the work would fall to you. That’s a guarantee. My relative had to do her studies in the middle of the night, exhausted, because he’d suddenly get demanding when she had school work and deadlines. He didn’t want her to finish school because he wanted her powerless. Right now you are deluding yourself into thinking that he cares. He actually isn’t capable of caring. He IS capable of getting you to give him what he wants – he’s done very well at that – but he is totally incapable of being a true, equal partner. He will criticize YOUR “flaws”, but refuses to do a damned thing about his own disability. It always is about him. Right now you have bought into the sunk cost fallacy, and you don’t see how crappy this relationship really is. The scariest part is that you have already weakened yourself by taking yourself out of school to go attend to him, and took yourself away from the little support network that you already had, and your self esteem is so damaged that you are dismissing a whole parade ground full of red flags, warning you that this is not a healthy relationship. Yeah, okay, so he’ll have sex with you. Sorry, but that’s still all about serving his own needs. He doesn’t care about your life and your needs and your future.
Right now you are telling yourself he’s got a heart of gold. That doesn’t seem credible, sorry. His untreated unacknowledged condition makes him pretty self centered. Someone with a real heart of gold gives an actual shit about you – he only likes it when he’s getting what he wants, when he wants it.
It is horrifying to see how you are pretzeling yourself already to compensate for his disability. You may think this is tolerable now, and you may have allowed your imagination to run away with you in thinking about some dreamy future with him. It will be a nightmare. I’ll bet you can find websites where people describe what their actual lives are like partnered with people with his issues. The future is grim. You pay a severe price for subordinating your needs to his, and it will get continually worse.
It grieves me to see your self esteem at such a low point. But the solution to this will be working on your degree and having a means to support yourself, in a place you want to live. And please please please get counseling and build yourself up so that you can stand strong and recognize your own real worth and learn what a good relationship looks like. Losing this relationship will be like losing two buckets of concrete tied to both feet, but you just don’t see it yet.May 27, 2017 at 1:13 am #688397Leslie JoanGuest
Oh, and LW, please lose the notion that you should feel any guilt about “abandoning him” in his disability. You didn’t make him disabled, so you don’t owe him a blessed thing. In fact, you should be seeing clearly that his condition is going to make it so that he never keeps his promises and always makes him a selfish git. You have an obligation to take care of yourself. When you care healthily about yourself, you can see when he’s his parents’ problem, not yours.
A good rule of thumb is never to pursue someone else’s improvement with more energy than they are willing to put in. It’s a really unhealthy codependency to wrap yourself up in serving his obsessions and anxieties when he refuses to treat them. If you wouldn’t think it’s a good idea to go find an active drug addict to take under your wing (please tell me you wouldn’t think this!), then this is really no different. He needs to grow up and exercise some responsibility for himself before he’s capable of being a halfway suitable partner. He isn’t doing that. This doesn’t mean that you should try doing enough work for both of you. It means you need to walk away, no tears,to be responsible for yourself.May 28, 2017 at 1:41 pm #688481baccalieuGuest
I think Kate gave you the best advice, go to Montreal on your own and finish your degree program. Tell him he’s welcome to come if he wants but don’t expect him to do so, or rely on him to pick out a suitable apartment. Do what you need to do to get an education and a career. It doesn’t matter that there isn’t one field that you are absolutely sure is for you. Most people feel like that. Choose the field that seems best and carry through with it (and if you find you don’t like it, change to the alternate that seems best). That’s what he did. (He may have hated it in Toronto, but he stuck it out to complete his coursework.) He should be able to understand that that’s what you need to do and figure out how best to live with it, if he wants to be with you. If he doesn’t figure this out, he’s not right for you. And although you will miss having a partner in the short term eventually you will find someone better.