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Scared of how I'll feel after I end it(14 Posts)
I started a 'friends with benefits' type thing 2 years ago. I had split from a long term relationship (15 years & 2 children) 1 year prior to that.
A friend introduced me to him and from day one I was strongly attracted to him, in a way I never felt before (I'm 43). He explained that he felt uncomfortable with the thought that he might be 'using' me but that he was unable to consider a full on relationship (difficult break up from ex wife/complicated family situation). He therefore checked with me that I was happy with a fwb type arrangement. I agreed I was.
And so it began. Feelings grew of course, more so mine than his. At times he is very attentive, at others distant, it has mainly been all about sex, we rarely go out or socialise with others. Around 6 months in, we started saying we love each other. At times I have felt obsessed by him.
Over the last year I have expressed that I want more. But it never happens. This has been terrible for my self esteem, sort of 'having' him but not really having him. We see each other 1-2 times per week. I crave him in between, he is like a drug to me.
He has come along on a few nights out with my friends, seemed happy to be out with me. But never invited me to any of his nights out...usually because family members were there or his adult children. We agreed early on that we wouldn't meet each others family.
Anyway (to cut a long boring story short!), finally he asked me to come along to a function with some of his friends and one of his daughters. I was extremely nervous as it felt a bit make or break time. On the night he was very late picking me up & because I was very very nervous waiting I drank far more wine than I intended to. By the end of the night I was staggering & slurring my words. I haven't behaved like that for a very long time & I feel very embarrassed that his daughter noticed.
The next day it was obvious he was disappointed in me & annoyed. I was shocked at how drunk I got but it has made me wake up a bit to the situation I am in.
So. I need to stop. All week I have tried to find the words. But I panic & stop myself from saying anything. This relationship is destroying my self esteem. But when I think about how I will feel immediately after I end it I feel like I could have a heart attack with fear. Fear of not having him in my life anymore. He consumes my thoughts, so how will I cope. Fear of being alone. I feel I only have myself to blame as he was honest from the beginning that he couldn't offer more.
So help me please. How do I find the strength and how do I cope afterwards.
The pain of this is so much worse than the breakdown of my relationship with my childrens father. I don't understand why this is the case.
Thanks for reading, would appreciate some wise words.
If it's too hard for you to just end it all, keep him on but get a life for yourself, you sound like you have nothing else to occupy your mind with, you need to not be relying on him for your fixes, he's using you and has told you this from the start, and yes, 2 years is a long time so no wonder your self esteem is shot, get out dating other men, join a club, take up a hobby, anything that will keep you distracted.
Thanks Jan. Yes that seems to be the obvious thing to do & believe me I have tried. Over the last year I have joined a dance class, a walking group, tried hard to form new friendships. But still my thoughts turn to him.
Dating other men would feel wrong unless I can sort myself out. Seems unfair on the poor guy I'd be on a date with.
But yes, I need to fill my life. I do work full time & have 2 young teens so technically I am very busy. But I probably need more of the nice stuff....fixes as you say.
And probably his unavailability is what's driving your obsession, we all want what we can't have. Nothing wrong in dating more than one person, that's the way it is nowadays.
Yes absolutely, when he pulls away I want him all the more. It's unhealthy I know. Maybe time to get online, see who might be out there.
Try shifting the balance of power.
Get out there get a new hobby, date others etc. Your new confidence will show.
he will see it. Once he knows he's lost power overvyou.....
Hi katmat, you've got to get out of this situation 2 years is a long time to be with someone and for it not to develop in to a full on relationship. For the past 7 or 8 months I've been in a similar relationship, that was until yesterday when he ended it as someone from his past has got in touch and he wants to make a go of it with her. This is always the danger when you have no commitment. I'm devastated as it came as a bolt from the blue. From the start he was honest with me but you can't help it when feelings develop. So please save yourself the heartache. There must be a reason if he's not committing after all this time, it will be hard to walk away but I think you have to, good luck x
I agree with the others, it doesn't sound like this arrangement is good for you, or really making you happy. After 2 years you'd expect more than just FWB, it will be very hard but in the long term you will feel better. Get out there, meet people, if you KNOW what you're doing is unhealthy you're already part way there...
Thanks brokenhearted, I've been googling a few things in my area...things to do/join to try keep myself occupied. Sorry to hear that Steelchic, must be so hard, hope you have good friends to help you through. Thanks Chick, I'm trying I really am...I'll just keep trying.
I was in a similar situation. I felt like I was drugged and couldn't bear the thought of him not being in my life.
Have you told him how you feel? Maybe if you put your cards on the table so to speak, it will force the issue. Then if he runs a mile, it will come to it's natural end. You are vulnerable in this situation as if your feelings are not reciprocated he could leave you for someone else at any time.
It happened to me, and it was devastating. Be careful. Really don't stay involved if he doesn't have the same feelings for you, the effects on your self esteem are just not worth it.
You say the relationship is no good for you. Try to keep that as the focus. The immediate few weeks/months will be hard but think of it as going cold turkey...find your inner strength and get through it.
Could you start online dating? Not with the purpose of searching for a proper relationship but just to have new people to meet and think about. It might help take you off his pedestal- remind yourself just how many men there are in the world. Why spend so much energy, time and emotion on just one??
I know it's all easier said than done. I do think your feelings are probably the way they are be side he is so unattainable.
Thanks Margot, yes that's what steelchick said too about if they are not really into you there is a constant danger of them meeting someone else. Which is very likely, he gets a lot of female attention, and I know if I step away he will have someone lined up in no time. I have told him how strong my feelings are yes, he says he loves me but still can't offer more. If I end it, he will accept it I know. He won't try to keep what we have. So once I do it....that's its, no going back. Which is why I'm so scared. I imagine how it will feel & I panic.
Thanks Margot. It's definitely no good for me. I've never felt so uncertain of myself, I feel small & insignificant. I'm thinking about the online dating...it's a possibility although a nerve-wracking one.
I feel your pain!! I could have written your post.
I saw a couple of other guys throughout our time together. Ex always made a point of saying we weren't in a relationship so I kept my options open...
I actually met a really lovely guy who completely tuned my head but he lived too far away unfortunately.
I've seen it said on here... Never be someone's option. You deserve more.
Can I ask how old you are?
I'm 43 Margot so old enough to have more sense! I do deserve more, I keep telling myself that. Just trying to pluck up the courage...
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