Post # 1
My fiance and I got engaged in Nov 2018 after three years together. We planned a vacation for Feb 2019 to celebrate both of our birthdays. Before the trip my anxiety started up terribly, which led us into an old habit of terrible figthing (cussing, name calling, fighting for hours…) and slowly our relationship has become more and more tense and toxic. The vacation was a disaster, we even planned to break up, but whenever it really comes down to it neither of us can pull the plug. For a bit things started to get better, I got on medication for my anxiety which has helped me immensely and I’ve started to flourish as an individual again. My fiance started to work full time again, which helped us both financially and stress-wise a lot. We still had fights but they were more spread out and less intense (for me). Everytime we would fight though, my fiance would bring up Hawaii and how we almost broke up, or make other comments about breaking up like “we just don’t work together” or “this isn’t working”. Of course it would tear me apart and we would fight more but always somehow get passed it. Then April 27th my fiance got the news that his dad’s cancer had returned and he only had a year to live. It was completely devasting and we immediately stopped planning our wedding for the following year, summer 2020. On May 4th his dad was admitted to the hospital, where he lived his last weeks until passing away on May 30th, 2019 just after 7 pm. What was supposed to be a year was only really a month. I cannot even express in words how this has changed our whole lives. It is the absolute worst thing either of us has been through.
It’s been less than two months since my fiance’s dad has passed and old routines are coming back. My fiance has tried to break up with me several times in the past few weeks during heated arguments, and finally last weekend I said I was done fighting. I had resigned myself to realizing that if he doesn’t want to be with me then I love him enough to respect that and move out. Then he got angry with me for not disagreeing with him (???). I am so lost and so so so frustrated. When he is angry he says the same thing every time, that he doesn’t want to be with me. When he isn’t angry he is all lovey and talks about us getting married like everything is fine.
I need advice. I feel like I am dealing with a totally irrational person. Do you think this is all just because he lost his dad and he is just taking it out on me? Should I leave him for both of our sakes? I want to stick it out and be with him, but will things ever get better?
Bottom line: do you think this is all because of his pain and grief and I should stay in the relationship? Or is he genuinely expressing to me that he doesn’t want to be with me, and I should end this because he would be better off? I just want what is best for him. I love him and we are best friends.
Post # 2
Honestly this sounds complex and I think if you two want it to work, or not, you need counselling to untangle all of this.
It could go either way…
Post # 3
I mean you know it’s not just because of his pain and grief. You said “old habits resurfaced”, not “he is acting like a completely different person”. Clearly the relationship is toxic. It will take a lot of work to make it into something that isn’t toxic whenever times get tough. It doesn’t seem like it’s something he wants to do, though.
Post # 4
IF both of you want to preserve the relationship, I suggest you find a good counsellor. It sounds like both of you could use some help with communication skills and learning to disagree without fighting unfairly.
Post # 5
- Wedding: August 2018 - Location
It’s not normal to constantly threaten each other with breaking up. You two either need some serious counselling, or to just let the relationship go.
Post # 6
According to your post, your relationship was toxic before your fiancé lost his dad. You are both extremely codependent and sticking together at this point because of the sunk cost fallacy and a fear of being alone.
You need to end things for good. You both need to learn that threatening to break up is manipulative and toxic and you can only threaten so many times before the other person calls their bluff.
Post # 7
My father died in an accident, out of nowhere . It was by far the hardest thing that I’ve ever dealt with, but it didn’t make me an asshole. It sounds like you two have had issues prior to his father passing. When he tells you he doesn’t want to be with you, he means it. Move on.
Post # 8
I don’t think your fights or your fiance’s threats have anything to do with his dad’s passing away. The tragedy and grief might have intensified things for a bit, but it’s clear the problems were there long before.
Some people, far too many people actually, have terrible communication skills. It sounds like this is definitely your fiance, and it is probably you too. Swearing, name calling, fighting for hours… these things truly should never happen. But good communication takes a lot of maturity, a lot of effort, and a lot of self-reflection. It also takes a lot of practice. In short, you both have to be committed to it. Do you think you and your fiance are? If so, you can be taught to communicate a lot better if you are willing to put in the effort. This will eliminate the pain of the constant break up threats and the inevitable hurt which comes from nasty fighting.
However, it’s difficult to tell whether this is just a problem of poor communication or the two of you are just not compatible/meant to be together. I would get to the root of whether this is a relationship you both want to preserve first. And then move onto the communication skills if it is.
Post # 9
alliekat20 : I second couples counselling. The relationship definitely sounds toxic because of poor communication skills and coping mechanisms.
You both need to find better ways to work through stress. Old habits CAN change and a toxic relationship CAN turn around only when BOTH people are willing to do the necessary work together for an extended period of time. This will not change in a matter of days or weeks and it will be really important to remember to get back up when you have the occassional fall back.
To start with, having an agreed action plan in place may be a good start? Try taking a 15 minute break from each other when one of you begins to feel heated, spend the first minute or two taking deep breaths to calm your body down. Over time you can reduce the break from each other to 10 minutes and then 5. You cannot reason with an angry person and trying to often only ends in the angry escalating when you are working with someone who does not have good communication skills.
Post # 10
Let this thing go. Do you want 50 more years of this drama?
Post # 11
- Wedding: September 2019 - City, State
Whatever the reason is it’s coming out of his mouth way to easy. It’s almost like second nature for him to say this like him saying “good morning”. I watched my mother did and I know how he feels and the pain that he is going through but he’s this started before your father in law passed. And even still when your hurting like he is your his wife is support system he would want you there. This has been going on long before this. Words hurts and they are very powerful!
Post # 12
Couples counseling, if only to make it clear to both of you that this should end.
Normally I suggest counseling out of a desire to repair relationships but the constant fighting, back and forth and using breaking up as a control tactic, makes me believe this isn’t a relationship worth continuing. However, OP needs help in seeing this and maybe her SO will realize he’s being an manipulative ass so yeah…..counseling.
Post # 13
No couples’ counseling when there is verbal and emotional abuse. It’s not safe and won’t work anyway.
Individual therapy for each of them and separation are what’s necessary here. They clearly cannot live together. The relationship is a toxic stew.
Post # 14
It’s not at all normal to constantly threaten each other about breaking up the both of you need to go to individual counseling or just let the relationship go all together.
Bc this is not healthy as your fiance has been doing this even before his father passed away!
Post # 15
There are no mixed messages here. There’s just one message: this relationship is no good at all. Counseling is not going to help in my opinion, it will likely cause more strife. End this.