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Really don't feel like I can cope anymore

(25 Posts)
Rachyrachrach Thu 15-Nov-12 10:24:19

I've had a horrible few weeks and I'm really struggling now. My best friend died suddenly just over three weeks ago, which obviously has devastated me. Additionally I met a lovely man back in July. It wasn't long after I left my husband due to his cheating and I certainly wasn't looking for a relationship but sometimes life takes you by surprise and me and new man got very close.

Unfortunately he has issues of his own. He left an abusive relationship at the end of last year and understandably has issues to deal with as a result of the way his ex treated him. Despite that we were doing really well and were very happy. We talked about a future together.

Then a few days before my friend died lovely new man had a traumatic incident at work. He was off work for three weeks and was arranging counselling to help him deal with both the work incident and the issues from his last relationship. He returned to work last week and was finding it difficult but apparently coping. Then on the Wednesday, the day before my friend's funeral, he phoned me in a state. He'd had a complete breakdown at work and has gone to stay with his parents. The timing was awful obviously as we were both in a bad place at the same time, but we kept in touch and were there for each other as much as possible.

Then I got a long text from him on Sunday saying that he doesn't feel that he's ready for a relationship at the moment, he needs to heal himself etc. That there are physical similarities between me and his ex and he looks at me and sees her, that he's too emotional to speak right now etc. This knocked me sideways and since then we've exchanged a couple of text messages but not actually spoken. He says that he'd like us to be friends but doesn't want me to wait for him, that he's sorry and never wanted to hurt me etc.

I just feel totally alone. My best friend's gone and now I've lost my lovely boyfriend too. I completely understand that he needs to deal with his issues and that he can't necessarily focus on a relationship whilst he does that. But I can't bear the thought of not being with him anymore. I'd give him all the space he needs, all the time he needs if only he'd come back to me.

I can't function at the moment. I've been off work since my friend died and my GP's just signed me off for another 2 weeks. I just lie in bed crying constantly. I need to pull myself together but I don't know how.

ShamyFarrahCooper Thu 15-Nov-12 10:36:57

Has your GP offered you any more support than just signing you off for two weeks? It doesn't sound like that enough, you need more help, be it counselling or anti-depressants. It's not as simple as pull yourself together. You've had a really traumatic time and it's OK to need some extra help to get you through this time.

I'm so sorry for the loss of your friend.

Rachyrachrach Thu 15-Nov-12 10:42:34

I have got some counselling arranged through work. My first session is next Tuesday. But in all honesty I can't see how it's going to help. It's not going to bring back either of the people I love. I could cope with losing my friend if I still had my boyfriend or I could cope with the boyfriend situation if I still had my friend but losing both of them at the same time I just can't deal with. I feel so alone right now.

Rachyrachrach Thu 15-Nov-12 11:14:39

I just can't process the thought that only a few days ago he was telling me that he loved me, that he was missing me etc and now he's saying that he can't be with me. I could understand if he was saying that he needed some distance for a while, I'd get that. But to end everything totally, I just can't understand that. We've been so happy together and I just can't accept it's over.

ShamyFarrahCooper Thu 15-Nov-12 11:23:34

I'm sorry it's all so difficult and I can understand why you aren't sure about the counselling but I wouldn't write if off just yet. Give it a try and see if it helps. It sounds like you may need some extra help on top of that. Do you have any family around? Anyone you can go to and bawl your eyes out with?
Staying in by yourself will make you feel more and more alone and isolated which is not what you need right now.
Are you managing to eat?

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 15-Nov-12 11:25:18

I realise you love this man but he's damaged goods with some very severe personal problems and that's not what you need right now. He's actually being very self-aware and kind to you when he says it's over. I appreciate that where you are now is very painful but there would be nothing worse than him hold out false hopes of things being OK in the future. A clean break is always preferable.

You've had a lot of stressful experiences in recent months and you sound very depressed. Do you have family that you could ask for help. Other friends? Take a leaf out of his book and look after #1. Good luck

Rachyrachrach Thu 15-Nov-12 11:42:12

I do have family close by but they're not very good at seeing me distressed. I've always been the one who gets on with things, nothing really brings me down etc. It's the same with my friends really, they don't know how to deal with me when I'm like this. My best friend was the only person who ever really saw my vulnerable side but he's not here anymore.

I understand what you're saying Cogito, and it feels a bit ridiculous because we've only been together for a few months, but in that time he's become such an important part of my life and he means the world to me. The thing is I really do believe that we could be good together again eventually, even if that means me stepping back for a while so he can deal with his issues.

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 15-Nov-12 11:48:03

He's become an important part of your life because your life hasn't been going so well and you clung to him like a bit of driftwood after a shipwreck. But he has opted out of your life because his own has his rock bottom and he can't cope with that, your similarity to his ex and your reliance at the same time. He could be writing almost exactly the same thread, in fact.

This is the time to be the distressed person you actually are and not keep putting on a brave face. If people around you think you can just breezily cope with a marriage break-up, a bereavement and a relationship break-up without it hurting you then they need to be told they are wrong. If you need help you won't get it by pretending all is OK.

Please embrace your independence, look after yourself, get the help you need either professionally or personally, and work through the problems in your life that you've put on hold whilst in the early days of this relationship. Reality sucks but this is the reality.

Rachyrachrach Thu 15-Nov-12 12:11:24

Because of the circumstances of my marriage breakdown I'd actually started to deal with it well before we finally split. So although I hadn't been on my own that long before I met new man I was genuinely ok with it. I was happier than I'd been for a very long time, I was enjoying being single and I felt good pretty much all of the time in terms of self esteem, confidence etc. So when I met new man it wasn't like I was lonely and desperate. He's become so important to me because of who he is

Rachyrachrach Thu 15-Nov-12 12:14:53

he's funny and kind and sensitive and thoughtful and I really loved being with him. I acknowledge that he has some huge issues to deal with and although I had hoped we could work through them together I can understand that he needs to be on his own right now to do that. I just desperately want him to come back to me when he's more sorted.

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 15-Nov-12 12:48:07

OK maybe he wasn't a life-raft... smile but was there any element of wanting to take care of this person precisely because he was damaged? Without wishing to sound too heartless.... a project from which you've now been rejected?

Rachyrachrach Thu 15-Nov-12 14:38:42

I don't think so Cogito. I was aware that his previous relationship hadn't been a happy one but I'd fallen for him well before I knew the full extent of how unpleasant it had been and the effect it had on him. To be honest until he had the work incident he seemed to be dealing with it quite well. He was seeking counselling because he began to realise that there were some things he couldn't work through on his own but he was generally very cheerful and had lots of optimism for our future together. Obviously the incident at work triggered what he'd been repressing but until then he didn't seem like a terribly damaged person. Of course I knew there were issues he needed to deal with and obviously I wanted to support him with that, but as I say, I'd fallen for him well before I knew what had happened to him in his last relationship.

skyebluesapphire Thu 15-Nov-12 23:20:26

Hi, sorry you feel so low. It's very hard to lose somebody close to you.

I agree that you should have counselling. I have found it no end if help in dealing with the end of my marriage and facing the future. Counselling can't bring people back but it can help you to identify and work through your feelings and make sure you are in the right frame of mind for a new relationship

Damash12 Fri 16-Nov-12 03:58:08

How sad that you are experiencing these traumatic things at the same time. Both amount to loss, grief and a fear of uncertainty and what else is is around the corner. I lost my mum to cancer last year and grief is a very very hard emotion to deal with, a million times harder than people imagine unless they have been through it themselves. I'll try and give you the best advice I can.
1. Be kind to yourself, don't try and be up and about and well, cry cry and cry, let it out when the pain gets too much but get up even for a short time when you feel you can.
2. Take all the help you can get, try the counselling, you'll be surprised what comes out of it. Take as much time off work as you can and do consider anti depressants if things get really bad- they do work. Also get some books in grief and loss as you will feel so many emotions over the next few months.
3. Now this is said from an unattached heart so I know I don't feel the heartbreak that you are going through but it is unbiased so listen and try and accept what this guy has told must have been extremely difficult for him to say what he has, take heart in the fact he obviously cares for you but can't give you what both of you need right now. It sounds like he has had an awful time too and needs time to heal or your relationship will become toxic too and more pain will be caused bin the long run. Besides who has said this is a permanent situation? He could feel better in a few months and you could be at a different level of grief from where you are now and a reconciliation could happen, but right now he cannot help how he feels and has kindly let you know. Remember the saying "if you love someone set them free" if it's meant to be it will happen.

I hope this helps you and you find peace, take care and remember to care for yourself right now.

Rachyrachrach Sat 17-Nov-12 12:56:08

Thanks damash. That's my hope really, that we can get back together when he's more emotionally stable - well when we both are I suppose.

I'm feeling very much in limbo at the moment though. We still haven't actually spoken. When he sent me the text on Sunday he said that he was too emotional to speak but would call when he was able to and would keep in touch to let me know how he was. We exchanged a couple more messages on Monday and I haven't heard from him since.

I've been trying to give him the space he needs so haven't bombarded him with messages or anything but did send one this morning (which he's not replied to yet) just to ask how he is and tell him I'm thinking of him.

I'm desperate to speak to him as I'm worried about him and I miss him.

tribpot Sat 17-Nov-12 13:21:42

Very sorry to hear about your friend.

But your boyfriend is not in a position to help you right now, and you won't help yourself if you worry over him. He's put distance between you precisely because you both need to be selfish in this moment - that's hard but pragmatic. It would be monumentally unfair of him to ask you to try and support him through this whilst you have your own grief - and vice versa.

You must lean on your friends. It's time to drop your mask of always being the coper. The real friends and family will deal with it better than you think - and the rest don't matter.

Focus on yourself. Allow yourself to feel your grief for your friend, don't try to distract yourself. If you and he can take some time to deal with your separate troubles you may find a way back to each other. But you can't expect him to guarantee you that in the circumstances.

SoleSource Sat 17-Nov-12 14:08:39

You are lovely Rach. If you can afford £40 per week, get a good tgerapist. One hour in private should really hekp you.

British association of Therapy and Counselling. Google it.

He has support. Find yours. We are here too x

Rachyrachrach Sat 17-Nov-12 14:36:23

I am going to be getting some counselling solesource. Starts next week. Fortunately it's through work so it won't cost anything. I really hope it helps me to deal with everything but right now I really could do with speaking to him. I'm finding it so hard having no contact with him at all.

SoleSource Sat 17-Nov-12 14:38:24

Email him smile

Rachyrachrach Sat 17-Nov-12 14:48:57

I sent him a text this morning. I don't want to be continually messaging him because he's made it clear that he needs space. I want him to still think about me affectionately rather than as someone who hounded him when he couldn't cope.

Rachyrachrach Sat 17-Nov-12 15:06:34

He's just replied to my message. He's going to call me later. Hopefully I'll have a little bit more clarity after we've spoken.

SoleSource Sat 17-Nov-12 16:54:47

I hope it goes well, Rach smile

Lavenderhoney Sat 17-Nov-12 17:33:33

Quite a few years ago now I had a very similar situation to you. Unexpected death of someone very close to me, and my beloved bf out of the blue wanted o take a break some days before it happened. Work was dreadful ( a new job) and I decided to leave it before my probation period was up. I had followed the money and left a comfy badly paid one with many friends to better myself.

So- no close friends or family( best friend panicked and didn't return calls) no job and bf living nearby but off limits. ' at least you are still thin' remarked an overseas friend.

I got blastingly drunk for one night at home then set about things. New job first, which came along easily enough ( years ago and central London) meanwhile I went to the gym, joined the library and read all the classics in bed whilst not feeling very like going out and being jolly. And the hardest bit- not calling or texting bf. I wanted to so much I deleted his number and email.

I knew my neediness was not going to bring him back, plus a bit of pride stopped me. I turned my phone off in the evening and listened to messages if there were any. No staring at the thing for me- took control of that!

He called near the end of the break he wanted. Left a message wanting to meet. I said , no lets keep it to the month, am really busy. And I was. He said I should have called when it all happened but I just said no, you stepped back, so mangaged without you.

It was awful and I have drawn a veil over it really but it does pass and you need to be very very nice to yourself and selfish in being happy. It is very hard to mange alone when used to and relying on people, so set tiny goals and projects for yourself and take it a day at a time.

stellela Sat 17-Nov-12 18:11:45

Life can really pile it on sometimes can't it? Sounds like you've had a truly appalling few months with all these losses to deal with - so at a time when you are hurting like hell and needing support from those you know best and feel closest too - that is exactly what isn't available to you. Been there myself, and wondered at times how I can possibly cope - yet do.....Crying and crying is ok - it's grief, and it is normal and understandable. Sometimes I think the best thing we can do is just accept and "have" the pain - because whatever the depth of hurt, it actually comes as waves and there are moments in between the pain when we can function and be kind to ourselves - I try to do anything that I find soothing and comforting. In my case, I also have always tried to particularly make an effort to keep contact with those in my friendship group who are kind and respectful people - don't need to see them every day or every week but just knowing there are people who care even if it is just one or two is such a source of strength. When challenges come along and we want to turn to someone to reassure us and advise us or do it for us, but we find we're on our own and just have to do it ourselves, we can gradually learn just how capable we actually are. Building up a sense of self-reliance and confidence is worth it's weight in gold. It's now years since my break up and i'm still on my own, no longer subject to such intense pain, having a strong sense of myself as able to cope whatever life is chucking at me. When i (hopefully) meet a new partner eventually, I will be with him out of want not need, and my absolute conviction and knowledge that I can cope with pretty horrendous circumstances. I'm not sure if this helps, but for me, looking back now, I really value having had space to adjust to losses and discover things about myself before getting involved with anyone else.

ccarpenton Sat 17-Nov-12 22:14:13

it sounds like you've been hurt in the past and you're now attracted to a damaged man because he probably seems safe and you imagine he feels empathy for your situation?

if he's messed up (and he certainly sounds it) then down the line you're going to get hurt even more.

drop him.

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