Post # 1
Just a big, giant mess of feelings at this point and was hoping you girls might provide a guiding light. So my engagement is eminent (know it’s happening in the next month) and part me is so excited.
We all have the guys in our lives that we never quite finished business with. In my case, it was my first love from my mid-20s. We’ve always kept in touch (nearly 20 years now, and if I look back on the emails and texts, we’ve texted or emailed nearly every month since then – nothing romantic – just generally a hello, how’re you doing? good, you? sometimes meaningful conversations, sometimes just light banter). He was always sweet and we broke it off mainly because of distance and we were young back then and one of us always seemed to be in a relationship. He knows that I’m seeing someone now, but not that we’re about to be engaged (it’s been a short dating -> engagement timeline). I always had feelings for him, but didn’t want to tell him at risk of messing up his current relationship along or hurting him again (I broke it off the first time). Really trying to do the right thing by him. However, out of all the men I’ve dated since then, he’s the one I’ve always regretted.
Last week, out of the blue almost, he tells me he’s always had feelings for me and that he has always wanted to give it another shot, but been too scared to say it. I was in shock since as I mentioned before, it’s been 20 years since we were last together, but we’ve always been really good friends. Part of me so badly wants to give it another chance (I just never had a clue that he felt similarly). Part of me feels like I need to put it in the past and focus on my current situation. I love and care deeply for both these guys and I know I can’t have it both ways.
Just want to ask what you would do in my situation? Please, try to be kind. I already know I have to let one go, which one would you? Would especially appreciate it if you have been in a similar situation.
Post # 3
@anonybee678: If I was in your position and my heart longed for a man so bad that I would pine for him or keep thinking “what if”, and if the man told me he wanted to give it another shot, I would definitely pursue a relationship with him. Reasons:
1. There must be something between you and your first love that you kept in touch for so many years. You have always carried a flame for him and he has for you.
2. Both of you were honourable about it – you never tried to cheat on your existing lovers by arranging OOT trips or any such nonsense.
3. There must be something missing in your relationship with your current FI (however much you deny it) or else you wouldn’t have thought of this other person.
4. You only have one life to live. Why settle?
I think you should give your first love another chance. Who knows, it could become the greatest chapter of your life. But before you pursue it, do the honourable thing and properly break up with your FI first.
Having said that, if you want to be with your FI, then you must keep your first love completely out of your life. Will you be able to do that? And what will it cost you?
Post # 4
It sounds like you guys do have pretty longstanding feelings for each other. If he had broken up with you initially, I would say don’t go back. As the usual dumper in my relationships, I know that when I pined for exes I had broken up with I was just over-idealizing them. That being said, you did break up with him, so if you do think you might want to try and rekindle it, just make sure that the issues that broke you apart last time won’t do it again. Good luck!
Post # 5
If I were you, I would definitely not agree to engagement/marriage with a man when I still had feelings for someone else. That would be unfair to both of you. You would likely always wonder “what if” and he would never really have all of you. I think that your best choice is probably to take a break from your current relationship and take some time to yourself – to figure out what it is that you really want. Just be careful not to get out of one relationship and rush into another. I know that you have had quite a long relationship/friendship with your first love, but in my experience jumping into one relationship directly after ending another just doesn’t work out for anyone. Take some time to soul search and figure out what it is that you want, and then go for it!
Post # 6
- Wedding: October 2014 - Disney
I’d take some time to think about why you split. I have an ex that I’m still friends with and though yes I’m sure there are feelings on both sides I will NEVER go back. I love my FI and he is my rock. My ex is my ex for a reason I loved him a lot but he was never there when I needed him due to deeply seeded emotional issues and what I believe is autism spectrum that was never adressed. At that point feelings get put to the side and you realise I have needs and they are not met here so I can continue to break myself for someone who isnt there or find something healthier for myself. That is what I did. I found a partner who truly understands me, he’s not ashamed of my crazy outbursts, and he’s always there when I need him. I also know that if I ever left this man I would be way sadder than leaving the old one. I know this because my FI is everything I ever wanted and could need. The old flame was what I wanted but didnt have what I needed. Its easy to idealize the past and see it with rose covered glasses but really take some time to think what did go wrong and why did I leave? Can that even be fixed? Many times it can not. Then look at what you have now there is a reason you are here, if you find something lacking then maybe you should go but not necessarily back to the ex. Its ok to have long standing feelings if you respect and dont act on them. Just know who you love more, who deserves that love, and who is there for you. A man who makes a bad bf may make a very good friend in the long run just remember time probably wont change that. I’d keep him as a friend and let the rest go. If he cant respect that decision let the whole relationship go because you cant have the past ruining your present and future.
Post # 7
I was in a similar situation, a boyfriend and I broke up because he was moving and we didn’t feel we were mature enough for a long distance relationship. We’ve always kept in touch through facebook and text, same thing some light conversations and some deeps one. While FI and I were talking about getting engaged my ex told me that he has always had feelings for me and would like another chance at “us” I didn’t, I’ve always cared about him and always will but I love my FI more than anything. I didn’t hesitate in telling him that although I appreciate his honesty I was in love with another man and planned on spending the rest of my life with that man. You clearly have doubts about your current relationship and you shouldn’t ignore them. You say only a part of you excited for your engagement, were you feeling that way before your ex admitted his feelings? Why didn’t you hesistate in telling this man that he was not the one for you? Was it because you truly want a chance with him or was it just because you are having cold feet? Do you believe things happen for a reason? Why did he wait so long to tell you this, until you are almost engaged? When was the last time you actually saw your ex? Do you know anything about the kind of man he is on a daily basis? You know what kind of boyfriend your bf is but what about your ex, how much has he changed as boyfriend in the last 20 years? And most important which man can you live without? I think you need to take a few days away from both and do some soul searching. And last I would just like to say if you decide to leave your bf, don’t leave him for your ex but leave him because he isn’t the guy for you.
Post # 8
This was my own personal experience with that. My first real love was my college bf when I was in my mid 20s as well. He broke up with me and I was completely devastated and wasn’t even able to remain friends with him as he had asked. He also asked me twice to get back together with him and I refused and was dating some one else at the time. When I graduated from college 2 yrs after the break up ex-bf then sent me a card with a heartfelt letter about how he still loved me and a lot of other very sweet and meaningful things, and provided his address so that I could contact him. It hurt like hell, but I did not acknowledge the letter, even tho my heart wanted to. Major unfinished business!
I went on to marry the guy I was dating and was with him for over 10 yrs. I still had the what-if feelings for the first love all through that entire marriage. I kept tabs on first love and heard that he got married too, and was inwardly crushed.
FF to today- I divorced (exH cheated, deal breaker). I was alone and happy for a few years, then started dating current FI. In the meantime, ex first love friend requests me on FB. I was a bit nervous, but accepted the request. I thought maybe those what-ifs would resurface. Guess what? They didn’t. I see pics of him with his wife and family, and feel nothing emotional about it. I’ve never even messaged, chatted or otherwise communicated with him.
Moral of this long winded story, IMO? I’m with the right guy this time, therefore; no what-if feelings exist.
Post # 9
I think that if you are having these doubts, you shouldn’t stay with your current man. That doesn’t mean you can’t reconcile in the future but as of right now, you should be without him.
That doesn’t mean you need to jump in right away with your ex… but at least you are free to explore what might be there.