Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

Still feeling crap after over a year, will I ever learn to stop looking.

(68 Posts)
Chyochan Fri 06-Sep-13 15:35:14

I was in a relationship for five years with my ?soul mate? or at least that?s what we both thought. We did have problems, mainly masturbation and internet addition on his part but we tried to work on it and he sort of quit, and also I think I kind of accepted it. He said these and other problems were caused by the fact we did not live together, so he moved in. I felt like I spent my life trying to please him. Then just over a year ago, after a couple of weeks of acting weird and pretty shitty, he left me. He never gave any explanation and has never contacted me. He still owes me a small amount of money and ignores my phone calls.
I found out recently that he has not got another woman (I thought this might be an explanation) and has recently quit his job. His life seems to be spending all day, every day in online chat rooms (and I guess wanking), he has never had any friends (does not seem interested) and does not see his family.
Sometimes I am consumed with curiosity to know how he justifies the decisions he made. The thing is I am still unbelievably cut up about it, I know how mad it is but I still think about him every day and, I guess, miss him (how crazy is that). Does anyone have any advice on letting go, it is making me so unhappy.

Boosterseat Fri 06-Sep-13 15:52:01

People are only ever responsible for themselves, he gave himself permission to behave in this manner, there was nothing you could do.

The best way to understand another persons addiction is the following mantra:

You did not cause it
You cannot control it
You cannot cure it.

He doesn't sound worth the effort of even trying to understand anyway my love.

Look at it this way, spending time today looking back is stopping you moving forward! Focus your energy into something else, when you find your mind wandering pick up a language book, learn a new skill come and bum around on MN.

Chyochan Fri 06-Sep-13 15:52:06

I had a slip this afternoon and was reading his posts, and it made me feel like he comes accross as a great guy (even though I know logicaly he cant be) and this has made me feel really awful, I dont know why these feelings arnt finished by now.

garlicbargain Fri 06-Sep-13 15:55:45

He's an addict. Tragically, you were right when you felt that he loves porn/websex more than he loved you. Addictions take over the space reserved for love, replacing everything of value. It's really very sad and wasteful, but there's nothing you can do - he's chosen it over you.

He may even have left to save you from having to watch his decline.
The "three Cs" of addiction are:
You didn't cause it.
You cannot cure it.
You can't control it.

Don't chase him for the money, leave it behind.

I once listened to a famous recovering alcoholic talk about his addiction. When he was a young man, he said, he met a beautiful, kind and intelligent girl. "I thought she'd fix me," he said, "So I married her. I kept on drinking and she didn't fix me, so I divorced her." Later on, he met a mature, confident, determined woman. "I thought she'd fix me," he said, "So I married her. I kept on drinking and she didn't fix me. So I divorced her." Later on ... another woman, another fix, another drink, another divorce ... While he thought he felt love for his wives, his only real love was his drink. He wanted the women to make him better, and they couldn't, because of the 3 C's and the fact that only the addict can fix himself.

Do some reading on Al-Anon's website, and google "co-dependence". And be kind to yourself.

oldgrandmama Fri 06-Sep-13 15:55:48

Go completely cold turkey. Don't look - yes, hard, take it one day at a time. You'll soon start to realise you're well rid, and wondering what you ever saw in him. But while you keep looking, you're picking at the scab and not letting your emotions heal and recover.

BitOutOfPractice Fri 06-Sep-13 15:56:42

Oh heck. First of all, you have my sympathies. It's a crappy feeling.

I also came out of a long and (I thought) happy relationship last year and I had a HELL of a time getting over him. I obsessively (and I mean every 3 minutes) checked up on him - FB, emails, driving past, phoning and hanging up the works blush

I am now mightily embarrassed by this but at the time I simply couldn't stop myself. I was a woman possessed. Not myself at all. I am usually very laid back. My friends were begging me to let it go but I just couldn't because I needed to know. To understand what had happened. Why he didnt love me any more. I NEEDED to know - like a compulsion.

And crikey it was exhausting. A total head fuck. So I totally sympathise with you. I really do.

Then I suddenly realised one simple thing. It doesn't matter.

I realised that no matter how much I searched for answers I would probably never find them. And even if I did it wouldn't make a difference to the situation anyway. And chances are they woudn't make me feel any better anyway. So, it didn't matter. It doesn't matter.

So next time you feel like checking up, say (out loud if it helps) "IT DOESN'T MATTER!" and do something else.

Time will help but you need to believe in yourself enough to say "it doesn't matter"

I don't know if any of that makes any sense but I wish you all the best. I really do.

Boosterseat Fri 06-Sep-13 15:57:34

Because betrayal hurts, you don't have to be embarrassed or ashamed about how you feel.

You know he isn't a nice person and its good that you know you shouldn't be giving him head space - you just need to find a new coping/distracting mechanism.

garlicbargain Fri 06-Sep-13 15:58:43

Xpost, Booster!

OP, he can be a great guy with a humungous, gaping flaw. Just like any functioning alcoholic, gambler, or drug abuser you might know. It looks as though your ex has just about let go of the 'functioning' part of his addiction, unfortunately, and the rest of the slide won't be pretty. Probably best not to watch him fall sad

Chyochan Fri 06-Sep-13 16:05:14

garlicbargain; I think there could be something to him resenting me for not 'fixing him' thanks, that helps. I still desperatly want to know why, how he could do what he did, after everything we said to each other and everything we went through.
BitOutOfPractice; thanks for your post, how long may I ask did it take for you to really feel the letting go? and did you do anything that helped this realisation?

BitOutOfPractice Fri 06-Sep-13 16:10:08

I read a book. I think it was called "Getting Over Your Break Up" and was amazed that the author seemed to be writing about me!!

I also suddenly felt angry. Really really angry about all the shitty things he'd done. It took about 7 months and a lot of athetic behavior on my behalf for that to happen though

BitOutOfPractice Fri 06-Sep-13 16:11:11

Just to add. Some days I still feel teaful and panicky about the idea of never seeing him again. Some days I still feel angry. Some days I don't think about him at all. Those are the best days

Chyochan Fri 06-Sep-13 16:27:51

I also have alot of anger much of the time, but also Im still incredulous that he threw away a relationship with someone who loved him so much to spend his days slagging off Lauire penny (its this site hes on, dont ask) and wanking to porn, which after watching it (I was trying to be ok with it) no matter what people say does contain alot of abuse against women.

Chyochan Fri 06-Sep-13 16:28:31

I just can help feeling really sad about it all.

Boosterseat Fri 06-Sep-13 16:33:48

You don't have to be ok with an industry that degrades and abuses women.

I'm certainly not OK with it, i think it contributes to the seemingly ever decreasing moral standards in some people. I find it distasteful and sickening.

Let this seedy,nasty little man get on with his hairy handed antics. I understand that you invested your heart and soul into this man and i empathise with how you are feeling but don't miss out on the good things in front of you while you're looking back.

Chyochan Fri 06-Sep-13 16:38:04

Thanks Boosterseat, you are compleatly right. No ones ever hurt me like this but nothing lasts forever and things always change.

Boosterseat Fri 06-Sep-13 16:50:06

Onwards and forever upwards Chyochan! You're spot on, nothing does last forever and the feeling will pass.

There are loads of these threads about at the moment, you can see you aren't alone but you will also see how many other people have come through the other side and found loving, respectful relationships.

Chyochan Fri 06-Sep-13 16:58:53

Thanks Boosterseat, it helps

springytufty Fri 06-Sep-13 20:40:52

It sounds like the ending was very abrupt, so you haven't had the chance to work things through. Unfinished business. It was a huge headfuck to leave you suddenly, no wonder you're reeling and trying to find answers any which way.

But now you're addicted to him . He's addicted to porn - and has chosen to go full-on with his first love (this is what addicts are like, any relationship comes a poor second to the love of their life: their chosen addiction) - and now you're addicted to him sad . Maybe you were addicted to him in the relationship? I second trying CoDA - codependents anonymous - which deals with being addicted to an addict. You'll meet a whole load of lovely, ordinary people who are struggling with similar things.

I'd also suggest a bit of counselling to work through a proper ending to the relationship re get the chance to say everything you need to say, but he won't let you. What he did to you has probably made you feel powerless - he called all the shots - and a therapist would be able to help you get your power back, which will go some way to helping you get over the knob relationship.

Addicts are a PITA. You are so much better out of it (easy to say).

Chyochan Sat 07-Sep-13 08:58:41

Thanks springytufty, your right my feelings indicate some kind of addiction to him. Iv tried counselling, just finished with her in fact, she didnt seem interested in hearing about the relationship, which I wanted to talk about to work through my feelings and hopefully as you say get over it and feel less powerless, or at least work through those feelings of powerlessness but she only wanted to hear about how well my kids are doing or my childhood, so it ended up like just a polite chat. So I thought I dont want to pay £50 for that.

Chyochan Sat 07-Sep-13 09:00:54

I have been to a couple of CODA meetings but found them quite intimidating as were very crowded and I felt shy to talk as they all seemed to know each other.

springytufty Sat 07-Sep-13 09:19:21

She may be right, up to a point - the quality of your life at the moment could well be a result of what has gone on in the past - but she's not for you. Please try again and find one you click with. Perhaps have a look at the BACP site to find a list of therapists in your area; go through them, write a list of ones you like the look of, call them up and go with the one you feel the most comfortable with - many offer an introductory session for you to see if there's any mileage in the relationship. Choosing a therapist is like choosing a boyf, you have to click. (I've had my fair share of therapists who don't hit the spot, it's worth trying again.)

I know what you mean re crowded CoDA meetings which can seem a bit cliquey hmm . Try again if you can, find another meeting somewhere else?

There's a lot of info, literature and support out there, but you have to search for it, have to make it a mission. It's worth it though.

garlicbargain Sat 07-Sep-13 12:02:29

All v. good advice, Springy. It looks worth following to me, Chyochan, because this could transform a devastating episode into a hugely life-affirming experience. I'm not saying it'll be easy, but it could be a major turning point.

My first therapist wanted me to go "Thank you for showing me where I still hurt" when anything really rattled me. It took me six years to understand what she meant, but I got there smile

Chyochan Sat 07-Sep-13 14:01:34

Thanks Springytufty and garlicbargain, realy useful advice, ill follow your link and try to find a meeting thats convenient. Just realised my post about the therapist could be misunderstood. To claify my kids are both teenagers and doing great, fantasticaly infact, Im really lucky in that direction. As for my past I know my childhood was abusive but I feel Iv dealt with it after 3 years of very intensive therapy in my twenties so dont feel I really need to go there again (tho could be wrong of course, does anyone ever really deal with it?). I think I must be codependent to still be feeling this attached to someone who so opviously has so little to offer. Sometimes I think Im cracking up.

QueenQueenie Sat 07-Sep-13 14:04:47

He has addictions.
You are co-dependent.
You can't change him but you can work on yourself and have healthier relationships in the future.

Wellwobbly Sat 07-Sep-13 15:27:29

Garlic, say more?

OP, a mantra that really helped me was, when the feelings got overwhelming, 'your behaviour/your choices do not determine my worth'.

You are separate from him. He does NOT define you. He is, truly, an addict. He is not really able to maintain an intimate relationship however much he parrotted in the heady beginning, and shallow wanking is really all he can cope with.

As an addiction specialist said to me: 'it is easy to have a relationship with a bottle. Bottles don't have needs'.

This isn't about you, OP. What is about you (see Garlic's point) is what hurts you about the rejection and the abandonment, and the not being cared about.

Yes, it hurts so bad! But it HIS problem shouldn't define you.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now