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Valora

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  • #351468

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi Liss,

    It sort of sounds to me like the relationship he left you for didn’t end up panning out, so now he’s back with his tail between his legs, seeking the last person who found him desirable and didn’t reject him. He may be contacting you because he misses you and has regrets OR it may be because he wants to use you as a Band-Aid to cover his pain from the most recent right now so he’s telling you what he knows you’ll want to hear… especially if the breakup just happened. If you know you don’t want him back, you should probably just not respond. If you do respond (as I would because I have a hard time NOT responding), just keep your guard up and don’t fall for any sweet words. It’s possible he’s only saying them because of the emotional state he’s currently in due to rejection, and if he does mean them, he needs to prove them with action over time before he will deserve another chance (if you should decide you want to give him one).

    #348182

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi Janemarple.

    I’ve got sort of a different opinion here, I think, given that I’ve always had a lot of guy friends. It sounds to me like he likes women to be conservative in real life, but he enjoys looking at pictures of scantily clad women as a fantasy, and he probably uses those sites sometimes to… make himself feel good. Men are visual creatures. This type of thing is very common among them, even conservative ones, and even ones who are very much in love with their ladies. They just try to hide it from their women, because they are very much aware that most women aren’t going to be okay with it. It’s understandable that the women are upset when they find out though, because it does feel like a bit of a betrayal and like they have wandering eyes, but again… that’s why the men hide it, because THEY don’t see it that way.  (Hence: “It’s just like looking at magazines!”)

    Now, I don’t think the sites where there is actual interaction between the men and the women are okay at all, but I’ve learned to just kind of shrug off the sexy photos, as long as they’re not looked at excessively.  His reaction when you were questioning him about it was likely due to embarrassment, especially since he’s conservative. He might not have realized that people could see what he was following.

    So I guess the question is… are you SURE he’s only been looking at this stuff for the past year?

    At any rate, this has understandably changed your opinion of him. If it’s something that you can’t get over, I think you did the right thing by breaking up with him. Just because it’s common, that doesn’t mean you have to accept it. It just means the men that truly don’t ever look are few and far between. I also want you to know that him looking at those photos doesn’t say anything about you or how he feels about you. I doubt he saw doing that as a betrayal toward you as it’s usually just a fantasy. It’s the equivalent of women reading 50 Shades of Gray or some romance novel and dreaming about the guy in the book. Looking at those photos is the guys’ way of enjoying fantasy in the visual sense the way that women enjoy fantasy in the storybook/imagination sense. Again… doesn’t mean you have to be okay with that… it just is what it is.

    #348166

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi Rose,

    Have you met or spent any amount of time with his ex? I ask because perhaps she’s not as abusive as he’s saying and he’s projecting his own actions/behavior onto her. He seems pretty possessive and potentially abusive himself, from what you’ve said, especially the part where he blew up on you and then ignored you for asking him to stop bashing her in front of you and again when you asked about the keepsake boxes. I think it’s okay for people to keep mementos of past relationships, but I think the fact that he was looking at them recently suggests he’s probably not entirely over her, and that’s maybe also why he can’t stop bashing her and keeps overreacting when you question him regarding her.

    I also think it’s inappropriate for him to be messaging guys that hit on you or like your photos. I remember a boyfriend I had once when I was younger. He was really jealous and possessive in this way. He would question everything, would get mad if a guy friend stopped by my house, and I once told him someone hit on me but I shut the guy down, and he yelled at ME for getting hit on. lol.  Turns out that guy was cheating me a whole lot and with at least 8 different women that I know of. So that’s something you might need to think about, too. I think people who are THAT possessive/jealous are often that way because they’re afraid the significant other is going to cheat because they, themselves, are cheating.

    #347184

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi Tee!

    It’s great that you have found someone who balances you out! I’ve had that kind of fire/water balance before, too (I’m also like fire), and it was the best relationship I’ve ever had. Those kinds of relationships are hard to come by! I think if you read up on the 5 love languages, it might help you to spot some of the things he does that shows he cares. There are lots of blogs and things written about them, and it’s really interesting!

    He seems like someone who is patient, and I think it’s great that you can voice your concerns to him without him taking it the wrong way. I don’t think you sound like a hot mess compared to him though, maybe just more emotional or high-strung (not bad things, I am emotional and high-strung, too. haha), but it sounds like that’s exactly why he’s good for you. His calm nature helps to balance out your high-strung one, right?

    I do hope you’re able to feel better and are able to connect even better with each other with some new understanding 🙂

    #347162

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi Tee,

    I think it’s really, really important to sort of “run your own race” when it comes to relationships and not pay any attention to what other couples are doing or what their relationships are like, because everyone has different situations. It might be easier for those couples to get together. Perhaps some of them live together. Maybe some have lighter schedules or schedules that match up well enough that they can hang out more often. There are just so many variables that no two couples will have the same relationship.

    If you can sort of get to the point where you’re more understanding of who your boyfriend is and how he responds to things and manages feelings and shows love, and if that understanding can make you feel better overall, then it doesn’t even matter what’s “normal” with other relationships, because understanding can make happiness normal in your own relationship, even if it appears different from others.

    I think it’s also important that you continue to share with him how you feel or tell him the things you would like him to do, but just don’t have any expectations about how he will or should respond when you tell him those things. It’s also okay to decide that this situation isn’t for you and you’d rather find someone who can interact with you more, but just understand that you may end up in the same situation with someone less compatible because a lot of guys aren’t big texters or phone talkers, and I really think this might just be sort of a bump you two have to get over until you’re able to live together and interact in person every day.

    #347154

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi Tee,

    I agree with what Anita has said. I also want to point out how I think sometimes, without thinking about it, we sort of expect people to respond how we would respond or how we would want them to respond, and when they don’t, that becomes an unmet expectation, which feels like a big let down. That’s probably why you feel so disappointed by his lack of reaction and not warm and safe. One way to fix this is to realize that he isn’t you. He’s also not female. Men and women respond to things differently in general. Men are fixers and less emotional/empathetic in general. This can makes them good listeners, though. He’s shown this by listening to your story about your family, but he likely didn’t offer advice or consolation because he may just not have known what to say or do.

    So in other words, get your expectations in check. He’s going to respond to things how he responds to things, and from the sounds of it, he responds to things in the way a majority of guys I know also do.

    Also, everyone shows love differently. Have you read about the 5 love languages? You two may have different types, and it may be good to read up on those so you can understand how he shows you he loves you. You are looking for him to show you he loves you in YOUR love language, not his, while he’s been showing you in his own language, not yours. It’s basically just a miscommunication. So learn to communicate in that way, and it will likely help a lot.

    Also, 2 hours of dedicated time is way too long. People are busy and Anita’s right about that taking a lot of energy. I’d have to turn that down if I were dating someone that asked that of me, too, because I have neither the time in the day nor the energy. I think you also shouldn’t assume that he doesn’t miss you in the way that you do. He could miss you just as much or more and just not show it. A lot of men aren’t very vocal about their feelings. They tend to internalize them, but that doesn’t mean they’re not there. So I bet he’s right… if he shows how he feels in the 3D world, it likely WOULD be better if you lived together, and it might be worth seeing your relationship through for it to get to that point, as long as he treats you well and you’re compatible overall.

    Anyway, seeing a therapist will likely help a lot. I’ve seen one regularly for the past couple years and have been able to heal a lot of pain from my past and it’s helped me through situations in the past couple years that I might not have handled well if I hadn’t had the help. Talking to someone really helps you gain a lot of perspective. I would recommend it to anyone. The key is to find a therapist that you connect with and really feel good about talking to, so don’t be afraid to switch if you don’t find the right one at first.

    #346932

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi Caz,

    It sounds to me like you did absolutely the right thing by leaving him, but it feels wrong probably because you’re used to being around him, so not being around him doesn’t feel normal or right, even after 6 weeks. You really have been broken up for a short amount of time, though, especially compared to the amount of time you were together, so I say just give yourself some more time.  I think it’s normal to feel the way you’re feeling because you’re sort of trying to establish a new normal, and that rarely feels right at first.  As time passes, though, you’ll get used to not seeing or talking to him and it’ll likely feel more like you did the right thing, especially once you’re over the relationship and can find someone else who treats you more respectfully.

    #346464

    Valora
    Participant

    Anita, thank you so much! I’ve been very busy lately with my kids home from school and I’ve been taking the opportunity to deep clean my house 🙂 I hope you and all who you love are doing well, too!

     

    Anna, I’m so glad you’re finding our comments helpful. Please feel free to post here any time you aren’t sure on something. Oftentimes our gut feelings are right, as long as they are lead by intuition (a calm “knowing”) rather than fear or anxiety.

    #346270

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi Melanie:

    This guy sounds like he was abusive and by blocking him, you showed that you will not tolerate abuse. This doesn’t make you a bad person. It makes you a smart person. You care about how you’re treated, and that’s so important. You likely feel horrible because blocking someone cold turkey under normal circumstances is seen as rude, but in circumstances of abuse, it’s actually healthy. By blocking without explanation, you are not allowing someone to abuse you any further, and giving someone an explanation might give them a chance to verbally abuse you one more time.

    I say let the blocking be your closure. However, I also don’t think it would hurt to list his behaviors for him, like Anita mentioned, unless you think that would give him cause for him to pull you back in by promising to be different. If you think he would learn from what you say, it’s worth telling him, but if you think he’d brush it off and insult you further, I say just let this one go. Our minds think we need “closure” from other people in order to move on and feel better, but we really don’t. Blocking him was closing a door, and leaving it closed is closure. If you have things you want to say but you don’t want to speak to him, just hand write a letter on paper and then burn it… it can be a cathartic way to release feelings without having to speak to the other person.

    #346268

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi Anna,

    From what you’ve said, I can’t help but think there’s something wrong on her end. She’s either trying to convince herself that her relationship and the pace in which it moved is the gold standard so that she can feel better about it or she’s very, very bored and needs to try to tell someone else how to live their lives. Maybe telling you what you should do just makes her feel powerful. Either way, what she’s doing is all about her trying to make herself feel better in some way.

    The real fact of the matter is that every relationship is different. Every couple is different and they all move at different speeds. The timeline of their relationship likely wouldn’t be right for yours, and it’s wrong for her to try to push that onto you and make you think there’s something wrong with your relationship just because it’s not moving in the same way hers did.  If you tried to make your relationship move the same exact way, that would likely put unnecessary strain on it, so it’s much better to just let it flow naturally, just as you have been.

    I agree with the others, just end the conversation with her when she tries to bring it up. Don’t let her opinions affect how you feel about your relationship. If you feel good about your relationship and you’re being treated well, then your relationship is good! Nobody should be trying to tell you any different. If you reach a point where you feel like you would like things to move a little faster, then that’s a good conversation to have with your boyfriend, but don’t let anyone outside the relationship pressure you into feeling that way. It’s perfectly fine (and sometimes WAY better) to just let things move slowly but surely. It’s quite possible that you may end up with a relationship that is more solid than hers because you took the time to build a strong foundation before moving to more serious steps.

    Also, I have an 8-year-old son and a 14-year-old daughter and I 100% agree with relationships moving at a snail’s pace when kids are involved. It’s best to be SURE before you make important decisions like moving in or marriage, and it really does take a lot of time to get to know someone and to truly find out how well everyone’s personalities and values mesh together because people often hide parts of themselves for a long time. Slow and steady wins the race and keeps the relationship strong (as long as you don’t let any outsiders get into your head), in my opinion.

    #342948

    Valora
    Participant

    Also, the hurt you’re feeling from this is likely a reaction from your ego. You want to be the ONLY one your partner finds attractive forever. It’s a blow to the ego to think he might find someone else attractive, so that’s why that hurts, but that attraction doesn’t say anything about his attraction to you. He clearly finds you more attractive than anyone else.

    #342940

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi kiwiboy0897,

    I agree with everything Anita said. Attraction isn’t cheating or betrayal, acting on it is.  He may have told Steve that he had an attraction to him, but he also then told Steve that he loves you and that nothing was going to happen between them.

    I can’t think of how someone who claims they are loyal can develop an attraction for someone else, and confess the way they feel.

    Attraction is a feeling and we cannot help our feelings. We can only help our actions. Like Anita said, there are going to be times that you find other people attractive, maybe even strongly. It happens a lot with people when they work closely together. This is where trust and loyalty come into play. Your boyfriend seems like he is very loyal. He may have confessed his feelings for this other man after the other man confessed his first (and I believe your boyfriend when he says he may have gotten caught up in the moment. It happens to all of us sometimes), but following that, he then told the guy that he loves you and wants to be with you, so the important part of that event was that he didn’t actually act on those feelings, even when he knew the other guy felt the same (which is a huge temptation). He remained loyal to you.

    If I were you, I would try not to get caught up in the fact that he developed feelings for another person. It really is a normal thing, whether you love someone or not, and even when you’ve been happily married for 30 years.  I can remember my best friend’s parents talking to us about their marriage when we were younger. They got married when they were around age 18, and they had both admitted to being attracted to other people on and off throughout their lives, but they remained loyal to each other, never acted on any attractions with other people. They also made it a point to not continue to put themselves into situations of temptation whenever they could avoid doing so (it’s hard to do when you work with the person), so hopefully that’s a lesson your boyfriend learned as well. And it’s one for you to remember in the future, too, should you ever find someone else that you feel attracted to.

    #342894

    Valora
    Participant

    Thank you very much for your response Valora. Sadly this is probably how most men from my country think you’re supposed to get close to a girl. There was a study done that found that a majority of girls were coerced into their first experience.

    I agree with what Anita said above. I am also so sorry that this has happened to you, especially what you described in the thread that you linked to. His behavior was not okay. Even if most men in your country behave this way, it still doesn’t make it acceptable or okay, and you do not have to accept it. No means no… and you should only have to say no ONE time, and they should stop immediately. Persistence past your “no” shows a lack of respect for you. Please do not accept a lack of respect. I think you should just stop talking to these men completely when they try to push you like this.

    #342646

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi Candise,

    I find his behavior very, very inappropriate, especially given that you asked him to not be touchy with you and he very much crossed that healthy boundary that you set.  If you’ll notice, his words and actions are not lining up (for example, he tells you he’s okay with not being too touchy and then tries very hard to sleep with you). I think this man is only after one thing, and if it were me, I would stop talking to him altogether. He does not respect you.

    I also would not feel bad about what you said to him or making him feel bad. He SHOULD feel bad. He needs to take a good look at how his actions very much contradict the things he says and be more honest.

    #342474

    Valora
    Participant

    Hi Harry,

    I am also wondering about what Anita asked, and in addition, what did she do for you?  The way it’s written, your relationship is looking very one-sided, with you giving up everything and doing all of these things to make her life better. Had she done the same for you as well or has it just always been you putting in all of the effort?

    Either way, I would not be friends with her. I would stop talking to her completely. For one thing, she cannot miss you if you’re still always available and chasing after her. Also, if you cannot stop yourself from checking all of her social media, it might be best to block her until you heal a bit.

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