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I think I've just had enough now

(24 Posts)
ThisIsJustReallyShitNow Thu 09-Jul-20 22:30:31

That's it really.

I've never had a good relationship. I've never been loved. I've ended most of my relationships after a few months at most because they weren't right.

Around 10 years ago, I split up from my husband- a loveless, sexless, emotionally barren relationship that was emotionally abusive much of the time and a relationship that should never have happened and only did so for all the wrong reasons.

Since then, I've been on around a dozen first dates. Some of them became second dates. Three of them became short flings of around 4 or 5 months that I ended for various reasons.

And then I decided that I wasn't going to bother anymore.

I had friends and a social life and it was nice. I became totally disillusioned by the number of married/attached men who made a play for me and felt I'd made the right decision.

But, I'm only human and a few months ago I got talking to a friend of a friend who've I'd fancied for a couple of years. He asked me out and we've been seeing each other exclusively ever since.

But it's not right and, although I'm very reluctant to do so, I know I need to end it. I know that the advice would be to end it.

It's just so hard. I'm 45 and I've never been loved or cherished. I've never been valued or respected. I've never been anyone's priority. I've never been in a relationship with someone who felt lucky to be with me or proud to be seen with me. No one has ever fallen in love with me.

I just feel so sad and so empty and I keep putting off ending it because I don't really want to. I dont want another relationship to end like this and because I don't want to have to accept that it's just never going to happen.

And I like him. But I know it's not right.

OP’s posts: |
Crystalspider Thu 09-Jul-20 22:44:20

What do you think is not right with this one?
Are you just scared it won't work out before you've given him a chance?

ThisIsJustReallyShitNow Thu 09-Jul-20 23:03:45

He's just not interested in me as a person. In nearly a year, he's told me I look nice fewer than half a dozen times and that's all. If no idea how he feels. If I had to guess, I'd say that sometimes he likes me but he's mostly just quite ambivalent.

He's talked a couple of times about going away for Christmas but I'm not included in that. We'd have been together for 15 months by that point.

He's not once said anything unkind to me but everything he does say is neutral.

It's exactly the sort of situation I don't want to be in but he's the only single man who's shown an interest in a very long time. And we could have had such potential. There is so much on our favour. But I'm just not what he's looking for.

I dont get the impression he has any intentions of ending it any time soon but his heart just isn't in it.

OP’s posts: |
Crystalspider Thu 09-Jul-20 23:16:58

I think you know then you need to get out of the relationship, he is not giving you the love you deserve. You said other men have found you attractive although attached! But this means there will be other men that you can find again but only when you free yourself from this situation. I know it's annoying when it doesn't work out, I'm in the same boat, I'm enjoying being single for now but when I am ready to find someone I won't settle for less than I deserve, if I'm single forever so be it.

Natureotter Fri 10-Jul-20 07:01:26

You sound like you have a good high self worth but your just too scared of what is on the other side, scared of being alone.
You so do deserve someone who compliments you and shows you love.
Get away from this man, he’s only going to grind your self esteem down. The problem is him not you.

Dating is hard especially when you’ve already been in a long term marriage so perhaps a bit older? You will find a good guy but you may need to dig a little deeper and go through a few more frogs but you know what you deserve.
You sound like you know
What you want, a nice loving, normal relationship where you can do things together, have a good sex life and feel secure. The guy your with is dragging you down. Ditch him x

sofato5miles Fri 10-Jul-20 07:06:10

Do you tell each other you love each other, that you make each other happy?

sofato5miles Fri 10-Jul-20 07:16:52

Sorey, posted too soon... If not then leave him behind, it's not worth it.

However, i am interested in what you say to him and how you treat him

MrsBobDylan Fri 10-Jul-20 07:49:49

I would say that because this is a frequently repeated pattern for you op, you should engage in counselling and explore your feelings of self-worth and what you need from a relationship.

You need to know which part is the partners you are attracted to and which is how you feel about yourself and what you are worth.

ThisIsJustReallyShitNow Fri 10-Jul-20 13:31:26

Do you tell each other you love each other, that you make each other happy?

He hasn't even told me that he likes me... He enjoys my company. That's about the most I've got out of him. But he came to rescue me when my car broke down and he takes good care of me when we're together. But, no, he doesn't love me.

He's been happy to introduce me to his closest friend but I get the impression that he's holding out for someone better.

Tbh, I'm not scared of being single. In the past 10 years, I've spent no more than 15 months seeing someone with the odd date I have pursued here and there before him.

Im not sure what counselling would do really. It can't change who is attracted to/interested in me and I dump them generally as soon as I realise. I did give this guy longer for a few reasons and lockdown in the middle of it all.

I just don't think he finds me particularly attractive. But then no one ever really has.

If I wait around for someone who thinks I'm the best thing ever and beautiful, I'm going to be waiting an awfully long time..!

OP’s posts: |
pallasathena Fri 10-Jul-20 14:42:24

Are you too nice?
Seriously!
Some people are just so seriously lovely that they get taken for granted...like a piece of furniture; always there. Always available. Never really fussed over.
If you are one of these caring, sensitive, lovely people then dip into the book 'Why Men Love Bitches'.
It's on amazon and very enlightening.
Basically, what it is saying is that men (generally) go for women who are challenging, fearless, demanding and who know what they want.
It isn't the best of the bunch in the self help style guide books but it could give you one or two insights into male/female relationships.

Dacquoise Fri 10-Jul-20 15:09:53

Hi @ThisIsJustReallyShitNow, two things stand out in your post to me. Firstly you seem to be forming relationships with people who don't meet your emotional needs and secondly you assume that these types are the only ones attracted to you as if you are totally passive in this interaction and have to accept them.

Counselling can be life changing, it has certainly done that for me. I came from an emotionally abusive, dysfunctional childhood which pretty much trained me to accept emotionally abusive dysfunctional relationships. I married a very selfish and dysfunctional man.

Have a read up on attachment styles. I was an anxious attachment with a dismissive avoidant type which makes for a very unhappy match. It seems like you choose emotionally unavailable men too.

Therapy and effectively reparenting from it has made me much more assertive, confident with good self esteem. This has led me to form a very good relationship with a securely attached man. Didn't happen until my fifties so it does happen!

Also, you don't have to wait around for and accept approaches by potential partners. I can understand that mentality. When your self-esteem is dented it can lead you to feel almost grateful that anyone is interested in you and you don't actively seek out better matches, which can lead to dysfunctional relationships. Everyone attracts these people, it's the ability to sift through the losers so that you don't waste your time and energy on them that counts.

Please don't give up but change comes from yourself. Good luck.

wildcherries Fri 10-Jul-20 15:14:28

I get this, OP.

It's just so hard. I'm 45 and I've never been loved or cherished. I've never been valued or respected. I've never been anyone's priority. I've never been in a relationship with someone who felt lucky to be with me or proud to be seen with me. No one has ever fallen in love with me.

I'm in the same boat, almost the same age as you. It's incredibly difficult. I wish you well.

ThisIsJustReallyShitNow Fri 10-Jul-20 16:23:29

I get what you're saying but, no, I'm not "too nice". I'm assertive and stand my ground. I've been previously criticised for being too 'forthright' and having boundaries that were too rigid. I'm not a pushover.

I am caring but I'm not weak. I can't pretend to be something I'm not.

Like I say, there were a couple of reasons why this one has gone on for longer than I'd normally allow. As much as anything, it's been suggested to me that I am too quick to dump and close mutual friends have encouraged me to give it just a bit longer...

It's not that I'm passive but I can only date men who show a willingness to go out with me. I turn down far more men than I ever agree to date. Literally 12 first dates in the past 10 years. 3 if those have resulted in relationships lasting 3-5 months or thereabouts and then this one. This guy was a friend of a friend. We 'met' (I'd known him for a couple of years and we'd spoken a few times) on a night out in the pub. It was the first time I'd given my number to a man in a pub in around 23 years.

I'd only agree to date someone who appeared to be worth dating. I dont feel flattered by the unsolicited advances of strangers.

I've done online dating previously and kept my profile hidden so I only engaged with met I'd initiated contact with.

I will admit, this guy does appear to be emotionally unavailable. But I think that's only with me. He's quite emotionally open with others and he's had a couple of long term relationships.

It really is just me. I think he's settling.

OP’s posts: |
SunnySideDownBriefly Fri 10-Jul-20 16:28:42

I feel like you're just guessing at stuff. You're saying all the things that you think he feels.

Think about it from your point of view. You want more commitment. You want someone who is more emotionally available. You want someone who treats you in a certain way. You want someone who wants to go away together and share adventures. He is the one that is lacking. He isn't ticking the boxes for YOU. Stop talking about the ways you aren't ticking the boxes for him!

ThisIsJustReallyShitNow Fri 10-Jul-20 16:45:39

Stop talking about the ways you aren't ticking the boxes for him!

Thank you. I needed to hear that.

But he has done all of those things with previous girlfriends. He's been in love. It really is just me he doesnt want them with.

I'm not very attractive and I could do with losing a stone. I don't really care about those things and I'm comfortable in my own skin but I'm not stupid. I know how men perceive me. I've had it before where men have liked my personality (and I can pass as reasonably attractive when I make an effort) but they couldn't bring themselves to accept the packaging.

I think men regard me as 'low value' looks wise and, I fact, most of the issues arise when I'm not just grateful to them for giving me the time of day.

OP’s posts: |
ChristmasFluff Fri 10-Jul-20 19:06:09

Ok, your problem is you don't value yourself as a romantic catch, and men take you at your own estimation.

You look for men who will accept you, try to become worthy of them - and then blame yourself when they don't love you, yet hang on in there for way too long.

I'd really recommend Natalie Lue's Baggage Reclaim website, especially her dating podcasts. She advocates having a 'recruiter mindset' when dating, rather than going into it as though it is the X-Factor and you have to be picked:
www.baggagereclaim.co.uk/podcast-ep-145-stage-0-1-of-relationships-the-recruiter-mindset/

So rather than the way you have approached online dating in the past, get your profile out there. A company looking for staff would always put out adverts, they wouldn't mooch around in secret, investigating the few potential employees they happened across. Join dating sites and have your profile visible. Tell friends you are on the market if they or their partners know anyone.

Then when you have your 'applications' in, you pick the people you want to 'interview' and go into the dates with an attitude of 'is this person what I want?'

Physical appearance is not the be-all and end-all. Men have rejected even the most beautiful supermodel - and men have adored women who are not conventionally beautiful - you see it all around you every day.

I go back to my two main points - people take you at your own estimation, and people pick up on when you are looking to be chosen rather than mentally doing the choosing yourself.

You can find love, OP, you really can. flowers

Crystalspider Fri 10-Jul-20 19:18:00

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and you don't have to be classically beautiful to be coupled up, look around at other couples, all shapes and sizes.
A stone isn't that much too lose, I think your being harsh on yourself and being with the wrong man lowers your self esteem.
As frustrating as it is, don't give up, ditch this guy and go back on OLD

ThisIsJustReallyShitNow Sat 11-Jul-20 08:24:42

your problem is you don't value yourself as a romantic catch

That is very true. Tbh.

I rejected a lot of men when I was younger if they felt they were 'too good' for me. I was quite unkind in some cases. I didn't realise I was being so at the time. I think felt I was protecting them. And I felt intense shame that they were making a fool of themselves by being interested in me. I thought other people would be mocking them and I felt responsible for that.

That's no longer the case because I've had years of counselling.

When I did online dating (I've done a few short stints), I did have my profile up initially and didn't get any interest beyond the "hows u?" type messages. I wouldn't do online dating again.

Perhaps I'm just not really cut out for relationships.

OP’s posts: |
Treacletoots Sat 11-Jul-20 08:32:59

He just doesn't treat you as his priority OP. Don't waste another second on this one.

You know being single is great. You put yourself first all the time. Only let in people who make your life better.

You know you're settling, not him. Let this one go.

ThisIsJustReallyShitNow Sat 11-Jul-20 11:28:12

You know you're settling, not him

I am. You're right 😔

Would just have been so nice to have had the sort of relationship.other people have. Just once, you know?

OP’s posts: |
Regretsy Sat 11-Jul-20 15:55:46

I feel for you but think you’re actually in a really good position if you know you’re happy being single. So many people settle for fear of being alone. Ask yourself would you be happier alone or with the relationship as it is now, forever? Also, talk to your married/serious relationship friends, they’ll tell you all the ways it’s worse than being single if you ask them! Mine used to when I was single and despairing and it made me feel better.

CarrieAnnQ Sat 11-Jul-20 17:00:35

OP I could have wrote this myself 😥 married to a man very similar. I used to think that he had settled but now I think we both have. I'm curious as to how many people on here are in relationships where they're made to feel the priority. Most of my friends are in similar situations to me.

stayanotherday Sat 11-Jul-20 17:13:13

Could have written this post myself.

BertiesLanding Sat 11-Jul-20 17:48:16

Im not sure what counselling would do really. It can't change who is attracted to/interested in me

Actually, that's not true. Most psychotherapeutic approaches are based on the understanding that we tend to attract people who somehow mirror something back to us, and we get caught in patterns of attraction that are very difficult to break - not least because we're operating with a form of "confirmation bias": we get what we say we get, and we fail to ask ourselves why.

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