Post # 1
So many of you have followed my story thus far and I am beyond thankful for the kind (and tough-when-I-need-it) advice.
We have had a rough 6 months or so but through many discussions, a few couples counseling appointments, and an individual appointment for myself it seems like some progress has been made. This week (after a sad discussion where I thought we were done) it seems like something “clicked” and my Fiance went into over-drive, listening to my points (albeit not totally understanding them but at least he listened) and scheduling an appointment with a therapist himself.
The problem I’m faced with now is that even though I feel he’s “trying” I’m not sure I can. I’m just so… Tired. I feel like I’ve been trying so hard for the last few months (basically by myself) that in some ways I feel I’ve already moved on to protect myself; I’m clinging by a thread because I do love him as a person and I don’t want to hurt him. AND (pardon my incorrect grammar) I know that he would make an overall good husband and we would have a good life.
Suggestions for getting out of this slump? Or is there no good answer? I’m struggling with this overwhelming inertia.
Post # 2
Leave. I stand by all my advice from your past few threads. It shouldn’t be this hard. You admit yourself that you are tired and sick of fighting for this. There are better men out there. Not to mention it sounds like it took him until now to realize that this matters to you and that he actually needs to try.
Post # 3
- Wedding: September 2012 - Southern California
Honestly, relationships should not be this hard. Do they require work and dedication? Of course! But based on your previous posts, it’s more of a struggle versus a natural progression. I really think you should cut your losses now. If he’s not a great Fiance, what makes you think he will make a great husband?
Post # 4
I don’t think there is any more unique advice that we can give. So, so many of us have already told you that no healthy, functional relationship takes this much work – especially before you’re even married. Your gut and nearly everyone here believes it is time for you to leave. I am truly sorry you are going through this. Please love yourself enough to move on and find someone that truly makes you happy.
Post # 5
“I know that he would make an overall good husband and we would have a good life.
“– No he wouldn’t. What in the world makes you think this? Shitty boyfriends that turn into shitty fiances become shitty husbands. If anything, they get worse, not better. And you would have the exact same life that you’ve been on here upset about for months. This guy is an asshole. If you stay with him, you are staying with an asshole and will live the life of someone who lives with an asshole. Nobody here can change that. We can’t make him stop being an asshole, YOU can’t change that, and maybe even HE can’t change it. So the question isn’t “how do I get out of this slump” or “how can I make it better.” The question is, Do you want to live the rest of your life shackled to an asshole? If you do, then stay with him. If you don’t, then leave. Conversely, IF you stay, you are saying “Yes, I like being shackled to an asshole”.
Post # 7
So, just now, when he’s actually seeing that you’re upset enough to leave is he BEGINNING to take you seriously. This will, undoubtedly, be the pattern for your marriage because … 1) he’s learned that you will stick around and take his crap. 2) It’s very difficult (if not impossible) to change these characteristics especially if he doesn’t really want to … and he’s being dragged by the threat of you leaving to take a look at his behavior.
You should leave. It will never change, it will never get easier, you’ll just be more tightly bound with finances and children. Leave now.
Post # 8
I know it’s hard. I held onto a terrible, long dead relationship for months and months because I was so freaking scared to let go and let him go and everything we had built together. It was awful. And no in retrospect I realize it was the right choice and I never should have dragged either of us through those horrible months of limbo. Your relationship is DEAD. Let it go. Grieve. Then move on. It is well past time. Sending you thoughts of healing and new beginnings.
Post # 9
I guess then the question may be how do I get over the guilt of leaving (even if deep down I may feel it’s smarter for the both of us)? I will undoubtedly mourn the life we “could” have had, I know he will be destroyed (at least temporarily)- and maybe the worst part is that now he’s “trying” (however successful this attempt will end up being). It’s like I’m giving up on him the moment he is trying to pick up steam; for that I feel beyond cruel.
And of course I have all the fears that come with break-ups: what if he is who I was “meant” to be with? What if I never find someone I mesh better with/can be as comfortable with? What if I never meet someone that fits as well into my family? And what if all along it WAS me?
This is all just terrible.
You stated all of my concerns so succinctly.
Thank you all. You make me feel sane.
Post # 10
Thank you. Just saw your post and I can’t even explain to you how much it means to hear from someone’s firsthand experience. I hope you found a better love since.
Post # 11
tough-when-needed-advice, okay? 🙂 Coming from a good place, I swear….I know this is probably your personal belief but there is no one person you are “meant” to be with. It is this exact belief that make people dump perfectly amazing people and – like in your case – makes people stay in miserable relationships who have no real chance at surviving. There are over 7 billion people on planet earth, to honestly think you can’t find someone better than THIS, is honestly laughable, considering you are NOT describing a happy relationship AT ALL. What you are “meant” to do is care for yourself and get as much happiness out of this life as you can! Is that what this relationship will bring you?
Post # 12
Regarding “what if he is who I was “meant” to be with?”, Better be single than forever stuck and in pain. But really, there is 3 billion men on earth, there should be enough opportunity to find one that fits you.
Post # 13
“What if I never meet someone that fits as well into my family?
” — Wait, what? Is this not the same guy who was pissed at you for driving your dad to chemo? How is that fitting into your family?
You get over the guilt by realizing and accepting that you are not responsible for the consequences of someone else’s bad behavior or bad decisions. When someone acts like a dick, the consequence is that nice people don’t want to be around them. Your fiance has acted like a dick for a long time, so now you don’t want to be around him. That’s a natural and predictable consequence and it’s his fault. You are not responsible for him being an asshole, you didn’t make him that way, you can’t make him NOT that way. It is not your fault and there is no reason for you to live the rest of your life with the consequences of him choosing to be an asshole. So no guilt required.
Also, it is very predictable that when he starts to sense you might be serious about leaving, that he would start “trying.” It’s manipulation. How long do you think the trying would last? And even IF he really was truly trying (which I don’t believe he is) there is such a thing as too little too late. There is no such thing as “meant to be together.” Or if that’s real (which I don’t believe it is) then at least acknowledge that it wouldn’t be this hard. If you were meant to be together, wouldn’t you feel good about yourself and the relationship? Are you “meant to be” with someone who says nasty hateful things to you and when you find the courage to say “I don’t like that” he tries to make you think you’re being unreasonable and that it’s fine and normal for him to treat you like that? You are meant to be with someone who appreciates and points out the wonderful things about you, someone who supports you through tough times like your father being diagnosed with cancer and tries to make your life easier. Not someone who uses guilt and manipulation to get what they want without taking your needs into consideration.
Post # 14
Breaking up will involve sadness, “what-ifs”, and I suppose some guilt. That doesn’t mean it isn’t the best long term decision. Sometimes as adults we have to make difficult decisions (just like deciding to get a divorce later on if you married him would be difficult – probably more difficult.) There will be hard decisions that trigger sadness, what-ifs, and guilt throughout your adult life: Do we move away from aging parents? Must I put my mother into a facility? Do we have to file bankruptcy? My husband/child/parent is in critical health-is it time to stop and let them go? etc. People have to make these decisions despite the not pleasant emotions that come with them.
But, you try to look at what is best, accept that there are difficult emotions and work through them, with the help of a counsellor if necessary, and know that with time the sadness, and guilt diminish.
Also it isn’t your problem that he took so long to make any effort to change. If he’d done that a long time ago then perhaps you wouldn’t be here. But what he’s doing should be “too little – too late.” The consequence of his not paying attention is that you have one foot (should be two) out the door. His hardheadness and inability to compromise and listen to you is on him. It’s not your issue to feel bad for him that he’s just now trying.
You’re not responsible for him. He’s a big boy, he gets to deal with the fallout of his behavior on his own. You’re responsible for you and your future happiness.
Post # 15
Never feel guilty about dumping a narcissist. All he cares about is maintaining his steady supply of adoration. When that is threatened, he’ll be angry. He’s entitled to it, after all. He’ll say & do whatever it takes to keep that narcissitic supply flowing.
If you refuse, he will simply replace you.