How Can I Be Confident When I’m Losing The Love Of My Life?

How Can I Be Confident When I’m Losing The Love Of My Life?

My boyfriend and I have been dating for 2 1/2 years and have been living together for 2.  I had been seeing some signs that he was not happy anymore but I just tried to always be cheery and helpful and make sure to be there for him when he needed me.

Two months ago he tells me that he does not want to live together anymore. He says that he has gone cold-hearted and doesn’t feel the same as he used to. This is earth shattering for me since he had just told me a few months before this that he had asked my father for his permission for my hand in marriage over Christmas. I thought things were slowly heading in the direction that I thought we both wanted.

Well, now it is moving time. I will be in my new place at the end of the month and he will be moving out next week. I just am so lost. I truly believe with my whole heart and soul that he is my soul mate. I cannot imagine my life without him in it. He told me last week when I came back from a work trip in NYC that for us to work that he really needs to see me be self-reliant, focus on my goals and (he didn’t out-right say this but) to stop being so insecure about myself.

I have never been so insecure in my life than I am right now. I feel as though I am losing the love of my life and I have no where to turn. I will be filling up my schedule very soon with going back to school and work is getting busier and busier- but the thing is that none of my goals seem worth it without him to come home to. What can I do to get our relationship back on track and rekindle that overwhelming fire that we once shared?



I’m gonna make this short. I’m gonna make this sweet. I’m gonna help you move on.

But this reality check is gonna sting a little bit. Ready?

He is not your soul mate.

He is not the love of your life.

You have plenty of places to turn.

You can imagine your life without him.

You will get over him.

You will fill up that hole in your life where he used to be.

Everyone has found someone who they thought was “the one” who turned out not to be the one. Everyone.

And, most importantly, you do NOT want to “get your relationship back on track and rekindle that overwhelming fire you once shared. “ Holy shit! Just reading that sentence makes me want to tie you to the bed until your senses have returned.

So how do I know all of this? I don’t know you. I don’t know him. How can I possibly understand the intensity of the love you shared? Aren’t I underestimating the connection you’re feeling? What if there’s no other man like this on the planet?

I know all of these things (as does everyone else reading this, by the way), not because I’m omniscient or arrogant, but because that’s life.

Everyone has found someone who they thought was “the one” who turned out not to be the one. Everyone.

Unfortunately, you’re experiencing this right now, which is undoubtedly painful and confusing, which is why you have to rely on cooler heads to set you straight.

You ever hear the phrase, “Love is blind”? Well, your love was blind. It was based on passion, not reality. Once again, how do I know this?

You moved in with your guy after six months. That’s not something people generally do when they’re thinking clearly. That’s something people do when they’re blinded by their belief that they’ve found soul mate love. And then they do everything in their power to preserve their soul mate love, even though it’s not meant to be preserved.

So, how do I know that it’s not meant to be preserved?

The second you let go of your ex is the second you can open up lasting love.

Because your “soul mate” didn’t want to preserve it! You’ve said so yourself!

I had been seeing some signs that he was not happy anymore.

Two months ago he tells me that he does not want to live together anymore. He says that he has gone cold-hearted and doesn’t feel the same as he used to.

I will be in my new place at the end of the month and he will be moving out next week.

He told me to stop being so insecure about myself.

It seems that, unlike you, your boyfriend has stopped coasting on your glorious first 6 months and has begun to see you more objectively. And, for whatever it’s worth, he sees you as weak and insecure. I’m not saying he’s right. I’m saying that this is the way he feels. Objectively, he needs a different woman to make him happy.

This is his right. Similarly, it’s your right – and mandate – to find a different man who is willing to put up with your faults, loves you unconditionally and never wants to leave you.

I know that’s hard to hear, since you want HIM, but if HE doesn’t want YOU, it doesn’t matter. Your ex-boyfriend is NOT your future husband.

But I can tell you one thing that should make you smile:

The second you let go of your ex is the second you can open up to lasting love.

I promise.

Thank you for your question, Leta. And if anyone else is reading Leta’s question and identifying with the painful process of moving on from your ex, please check out my bestselling eBook, “Why He Disappeared”.

You won’t be sorry.

Join our conversation (97 Comments).
Click Here To Leave Your Comment Below.


  1. 1

    Wow I am very sorry that you are feeling the way you are Letna, I was once in your shoes years ago and I can feel the desperation in your question and in your situation because I was once like you except I was with my ex for almost 9 years before I found the guts to pick up and leave. And Evan is right you will move on, you will heal, you will learn, and you will find better. Have hope, fill your life w things you love, and do things that make you happy, rebuild your life without your ex and love will walk back into your life when you are happy again. And yes buy that book Why He Disappeared, it will help you get back on track w dating much faster then doing it by yourself so you don’t repeat your mistakes. Good luck!

  2. 2

    This might be a blessing in disguise, actually.  I went through a similar situation and now not sure I buy into the concept of a soul mate. Not because I’m bitter but because I think that shock me into greater maturity and wisdom. If I could have said “soul mate” back I don’t think I’d want him; he probably hasn’t changed and I have changed too much. I am not using hot chemistry as a basis for accepting a date now. I don’t always agree with EMK, but I do find enough common ground with him that I pay attention to what he says and have taken it to heart.  I am able to start out from a much more objective place.

  3. 3
    Jackie H.

    I agree with Evan…the right man for you is not going to go away…it’s better to know this side of the marriage certificate than the other side…

  4. 4
    Karmic Equation


    There’s a different way to look at this that might help you out.

    If you think he’s the only man in this world of 5 billion people that is suited to you…then that means you are only good for one man in this world. You’re not good enough for the other 4,999,999,999 people out there.

    Is that what you believe?

    I didn’t think so.

    Buck up. When you lock yourself into thinking that there’s only one person for YOU out there, then the converse has to be true, that YOU are only suited for one person out there.

    What a silly way to think.

  5. 5

    Fresh out of a two year relationship here, too. Yes it is pretty painful. Believe me, I know. He’s not going to come back, though. And, even if he does, how will it feel for you to continue living with a guy who has already bailed on you once and is therefore liable to bail again at any moment? You’ll be living in terror every day, waiting for the axe to drop. And you deserve better.
    A few of the sources that helped me though my recent breakup (that came completely out of the blue, at the end of a date night) were the Baggage Reclaim site (especially the ten commandments), and a book that was recommended on that site, called Getting Past Your Breakup. One thing I’ve been telling myself from day one, there is no going back ever.
    It’s been almost a month for me, and there’s already light at the end of the tunnel. I am not ready for a new serious relationship yet, but people have been approaching me about dates already, and lately, I’m tempted to say yes to some of them. Taking it one day at a time. Good luck.

  6. 6

    Listen to Evan, Leta.  You will feel better in time.  Remain optimistic and keep your heart open.  Love will come your way 🙂

  7. 7

    Leta- I’m really sorry for your pain. One thing to consider- people aren’t always completely earnest about their reasons for breaking up, so please don’t twist yourself into a pretzel trying to become what he says he wants. Look at the way the break-up went down- would you have ever treated him that way? If the answer is no, know that you don’t deserve to be treated that way either. A true ‘soulmate’ would not have handled things like this.

  8. 8

    He will come back once you’re already over him like he’s over you.  He’ll want you back, but you won’t care.  Trust me.  It’s happened to me several times.  Some people see the person that loves them as weak and that love is weakness.  You will heal, but it’s going to suck for a while.  Go do nice things for yourself: massage, acupuncture, sauna, exercise, sleep, see your friends/family, and give yourself time to get over him.

    1. 8.1

      I agree with Lc. I have been married two times & they both came back wanting me back. I told them both they had their chance & ruined it so they were not getting me back. U have to b strong & don’t let them back n. I no it will b hard but u have to think of yourself. If they truly loved u they’d treated u with the respect u deserved. Always put yourself first. Take things slow. 

  9. 9
    Carol W

    Evan what I love about you is you tell the truth. Women just don’t get a man’s way of thinking many times. I have taken it to heart that if he isn’t dependable, trustworthy it may be difficult to let go, no matter how much you thought you were in love, but I know in my heart I could never be with someone long term I couldn’t trust or depend on to be there for me.
    Thanks for all you do Evan!

  10. 10

    Leta, This guy is a jerk for making it about you.  If he genuinely felt like there was something you could do to improve upon the relationship, he would have approached it a classy, supportive way without undermining your confidence.  This is a mark of immaturity on his part.
    I don’t think what your describing is unusual. It’s hard to focus on things that once seemed important when experiencing a life setback (losing the person you thought was “The One”) and that there will be a time period where you go through the motions, but that’s the nature of heartbreak.
    I went through a bad breakup a year ago, and in the past few months have really begun to see what Evan is describing to you about losing the love blindness. In fact, I am honestly relieved he is not “The One”.  Only an a$$hole would do something so hurtful while at the same time telling you that YOU need to demonstrate certain qualities.  NO.  What a terrible thing to do to someone.  Remember, if he was a good boyfriend, he would have addressed his concerns in a way that made you feel safe and not feel attacked.  It’s hard when you are feeling so much heartache, but what he did is callous.

  11. 11
    Karl T

    Karmic #4,
    I’m sure the 2 billion people you left out are not happy.  There are over 7 billion people in the world!!!!

  12. 12

    Leta wrote, “ I had been seeing some signs that he was not happy anymore but I just tried to always be cheery and helpful and make sure to be there for him when he needed me”
    Here is one lesson learned: it’s always best to bring up any possible concerns. Too many people spend far too long pretending that nothing is wrong until they simply can’t take it anymore.
    Go no contact as soon as you’re ready. Later, he’ll see how well you’re doing. Who knows, after some time apart this man might realize how much he misses you, but you can’t sit idly by waiting for that to happen. Let him see how self-reliant and goal-oriented you can be, but don’t do it for him. Do it for yourself.

  13. 13

    I feel Leta’s pain I honestly do but just remember ladies the exact same thing is happening today right now to a guy somewhere the same way from a girlfriend he’s in love with and thought was “The One”. Believe me he’s hurting too. All I’m saying is everything men do to women during the breakup process women do as well.

  14. 14

    I was not as lucky as Leta. My boyfriend strung me along for over 2 years, dangling carrots (“I always knew I would want to live together/get married/have a child when I found the right woman”) and did not tell me he was not in it for the long haul. I wasted the years I was 28, 29 and 30 holding out for him to get his act together and figure out that I was his soul mate. 
    I figured it out, and when he finally opened up I found out that he fell out of love with me, thought I was needy and dependent and that we had nothing in common with each other. 
    We split. I grieved. Then I dated, many wonderful men, and finally, 2 years later, found my husband – someone who adores me and we lived together, got married and have a beautiful daughter.
    It really hurts now, I know, but this too will pass. Work on getting to know yourself and on your self esteem. Think about he qualities that worked and did not work in your ex so you have some idea what to look out for. Enjoy the search. You will find a great partner one day.

    1. 14.1

      Kim, your sharing and suggestions are really cool and encouraging !!!  Indeed, we were attracted to the ex by some qualities he or she showed until one day we painfully found out that he or she was not the Soul Mate we thought.  Indeed, we need to move on, with confidence in ourselves, our fate, our future, and finally our life.  The result will always be great as far as we did what we need to do.  God bless!

  15. 15
    Karl T

    I’m so sick of reading women’s posts on this blog using the phrase “he strung me along”.  Please, what a crock.  If I could have a nickel for every woman who used that phrase I’d be rich.  
    #14 kim,
    So he eventually fell out of love with you and yet he strung you along??  Really?  What would be the advantage of him to ‘string you along’ if he didn’t want you or if he was unsure if he was still in love with you?  Why would he continue to waste his time and money with a girl he didn’t care for anymore??  I think women simply use this phrase when a guy breaks up with them as way of relieving anger by blaming the guy.   Anybody can lose feelings for a person and feelings are totally gray so many times it’s very unclear.  

  16. 16

    Karl T, 
    You won’t change women any more than women are going to change men.  And if you’re going to read a blog written aimed at women, you are going to be seeing women say things you don’t like.  Thems the breaks, kid.

  17. 17
    Karl T

    starththrower #16,
    I’m not trying to change anyone, just educate them.  Why else would they come to this blog if they want keep their own method of thinking and not listen to a word anyone says??
    You can either be enlightened and learn about things from a new perspective or you can remain stubborn and ignorant.  Thems the breaks, kid.

    1. 17.1

      Karl..could you answer this one for me as best you can please? i hope you get this straight away as i’m meeting my ex in the morning..In brief, we broke up 7 weeks ago,we’d been together for almost 2 years and this past year has been tumultuous, due to a whole new discovery when he was diagnosed with anxiety& depression. That didn’t matter i wasn’t going anywhere, i was committed to working through it with him, but after a grueling year it got really tough as in energy zapping, we broke up a few times and got back together quickly (probably a bit immature to go for the exit that few times), but the last time was because i really had to make a stand about the way i was spoken to by him, the only reason he did it was because i was allowing it. So off i went, in a lot of varying degrees of pain and grieving stages during the next 5 weeks, i felt every emotion honestly..but then i came to a point where i just missed him, You know our problems are nothing insurmountable, we’d just been a bit careless with communication towards the end..we spent some time together the other night after he told me ‘he’s not in love with me anymore’ it was absolutely heart breaking for both of us, we spent the night cuddling and crying and talking…thing is, i don’t know whether it’s true or that i can’t accept it, but as i said i’m seeing him tomorrow and the thing is, if he just wanted me out of his life, wouldn’t he make excuses not to be able to see me? Do you think he’s making sure he’s sure? just some of your male perspective would be handy please. I can move on,it really won’t be hard to attract another, but i just don’t want to yet. I’m not 100% sure we’re over. Thanks for reading, look forward to your reply

      1. 17.1.1

        Good god! If it’s not 100% over, it needs to be, for your own sanity. He says he is not in love with you anymore, then spends the night cuddling and crying, makes plans to see you again, rinse, repeat. From my completely non-male perspective, this man is messing with your head and turning your life into pure misery. Don’t get me wrong, he might think he has your best interests in mind when he does this, or he might not even know why he’s doing it, or it might somehow temporarily lift his self-esteem and make him feel slightly better for a bit, like he’s in control and he’s being loved and wanted. But whatever his reasons, the outcome of what he does, for you, is awful. You need to leave, not come back, and most likely cut contact too. I strongly recommend for your situation.

        For the reference, I am in a similar situation, he broke up 3.5 months ago after two years and we’ve been staying in touch… and maybe we shouldn’t have. But at least in my case he doesn’t do this breaking up and coming back multiple times a year, and cuddling and crying and saying he doesn’t love you anymore routine… I only saw him twice since the breakup and he makes it very clear that he has moved on and doesn’t want to get back together. Which helps me move on from him as well. If he was doing this yo-yo thing to me like the one you describe, I would probably be insane by now from all the confusion and mixed messages.

        Best of luck.

  18. 18

    I have had a dozen boyfriends and been in love a few times. I  experienced the soul mate feeling a few times, but the man I loved most was not one of those.  I loved him for who he was and the wonderful person he was. He wasn’t “The One” but I did bond to him. After a couple of years he did not want to be with me so I came to accept (after a while) that he was not my future husband.

    I dated a lot during the following 3 years but whenever I tried to open my heart to someone new, I would want to be with my ex.  I have been on many dates with some charming, hot and kind men, but never again fell in love. I was not  any of their future wives, because I didn’t want any of them. All the men I dated were not him and none held my interest.  When I begin to feel the stirrings of something, I dream about my ex and those feelings die quickly.  I do go still out as friends with other men but I don’t date anymore because it is unfair to them.

    I am unable to open myself up to romantically loving anyone else. I  have been in therapy and thought about this.  Part of me wants a partner and a family and know that is not in the cards for me. I am a happy person learning to be content with a life without those. This is better than faking it just to land a husband and not being able to love him as he deserves and as I deserve to love someone.

    There is no “One.” I know we all have many potential partners and if I had met one of them that wanted me before I met this last man I loved seven years ago now, I would be happily married.  Knowing that does not change this: once I bonded to that man I became closed off to all other possibilities and have not learned how to reopen myself.  Why this happened with him instead of an earlier boyfriend is a mystery to me. Why this happened at all is a mystery too!

    I let go of my ex 5 years ago. He is not on my friends list, I do not see him, we do not talk or write email or see each other around town. He is not in my life in any way at all, but he is still in my heart whenever I look there. I don’t know how to let go of him completely.

    1. 18.1

      Happy, I am impressed by your story.  Apparently, being “the wonderful person” is what he showed that has attracted you.  So, what is that “wonderful” you found in him?  That appears to be very attractive and valuable in your love relationship.

    2. 18.2

      I dated, got engaged to my college sweetheart, the man I KNEW was the one. After two years I ended it. That was almost 20yrs ago. I’ve loved, been married, divorced, now dating again. Still, after all this time there’s a soft spot in my heart for him. Maybe because he was the first guy I ever really loved and wanted to spend my life with. I will always think of him fondly. It took a long, loooong time to get over him, to stop comparing every guy to him-about 10yrs actually. But eventually I did. And so will you.

    3. 18.3
      Susan D

      Hi Happy, I am three years into a relationship with a man I have been living with for a year. I found out four months ago that he had been cheating on me for a year (right after we moved in together). He lied about it at first, then two months later I had rock solid proof. He apologized and claimed to have cut it off, but two months ago I found he had called her. I love him more than anything but this is destroying me- I feel that he never really wanted me and that he is always on the lookout for someone else. My self esteem has plummeted. For a while, I tried to find someone to cheat on him with but I don’t work like that, and I wouldn’t do that to someone else and I wouldn’t have casual sex.
      I know I need to break up with him, and just last night I gave myself the freedom not to date again. I had felt I had to “show him” and get someone, but just because he did that does not mean I have to. I don’t trust anyone. I feel like I can live without a mate even though that is all I ever wanted ( I am 45 and had an 18 year marriage that ended with betrayal on his part). I am very interested in your post because you seem to have similar feelings to what I feel- he is the only person I ever really loved like this, and he basically told me Im not good enough.

    4. 18.4
      forever young

      I am so sorry to hear about your story and my heat goes out for it. I really don’t like the fact that I am a woman cause women always tend to be too loving and deeply emotional with their big heart which is how they unconciously hurt themselves and men who make them truly, wholeheartedly fall in love with them then dump them would never take responsibility for that. My ex who I made me believe he was the one broke up with me a month ago. The time I had with him, tho very short, was the best time of my life so this breakup has totally broken me down that I feel like I’m not alive anymore. Im in the mixed feeling of hate and love. I hate how he could do that to me but deep down inside he is still the one I love the most. I was ready to give him everything of me. I’m really afraid that I can never really get over him to open my heart to other men.
      Now I’m not sure what to advise you since I’m stuck in mine right now. And the way you describe your situation is so annoyingly calm but not too emotional like others that I believe it is a persistent feeling that is really hard to get rid of. But I truely hope you will get over him soon to get to your true love who can give you the endless happiness for the rest of your life. May God bless us all. If you need someone to talk Im here

      1. 18.4.1

        My story is somewhat like yours. I met my 2nd wife over 30 years ago. We dated for about 4 months. I was 18 she was 21. I didn’t see her for 30 years, but she stayed in my heart. After I divorced my 1st wife, I looked her up after 30 years, sent her an email asking her if she remembered me. Long story short,  we married in September, 2012. I was never happier. I was married to the woman of my dreams.


        After about 3 months of being married, things started happening that I still don’t understand.  She had been divorced since 2004. She was used to being independent and not answering to anyone. I know that I can  be controlling at times. We separated in October,  2013. For 4 months I tried to reconcile with her, we went to counseling together, we tried a religious retreat, everything, nothing worked, we divorced in november, 2014.

        It was the most difficult thing I have ever gone through.  But, I don’t regret any of it: I know this sounds shallow, but she is a beautiful woman,  I know that I may never find anyone like her again.

        It has been a year since the divorce.  I have dated little,  I know I am not ready.

        My suggestion is to take  your time. You will heal. Everything happens for a  reason. My feeling is that she is a bridge to whoever is next.










  19. 19

    Hi Leta, I’m sorry for your condition. But you know, the same thing happened to me but after 7 years of being in relationship. we did not move in together but pretty much been meeting on weekends and sometimes in week days. Its like when he told me he is not attracted to me any more and that in fact he currently hates and is disgusted of me for being insecure and not focusing on my goals. This came from the man who said I’m his queen and he’ll go to the ends of the world for me. I’m shocked is a small thing to say. Its like I don’t recognize this guy at all. Everything I do or say is a sin for him. used to scold, shout and say its for my betterment. got enough of him. He’s perfect if he respects me a bit. but the life is that way. you cannot have that person bcz he is almost perfect but not perfect. Just let go of the man. stick to your schedule. Above all don’t call him or talk to him. Its easy said than done. I know this bcz he calls me even after breaking up at least once in two days for some or other reason. but I’ve been avoiding him. Just find time to put up a profile on some dating site. before that let go of him completely. Pain is inevitanle but suffering is optional.

  20. 20

    Did you live with him Kim?

  21. 21

    Karl T,
    this is a place for women, and I very often wonder what are you and the other men (there seem to be more than I would expect) getting out from writing on a blog for women.
    If you are looking for a way to better understand women let me share something you might find useful.
    Women like to share experiences with each other, also to complain about men, also to seek validation. This is only human, and civilized people show each other at least a little bit of empathy in such exchanges. Being empathetic does not preclude people from giving good advice, on the contrary, it brings both meaning and consolation to another person.
    As for the phrase “he strung me along” – you need to recognize that save for Karmic Equation and a few more bold and enlightened souls here,  the goal of dating for women is to be in a relationship, the goal of relationships is to be married, the goal of marriage is to have a family (with children, or pets, or whatever you like).
    Women experience the natural progression from one step to another as a personal success, and when the progression is not kept, they experience the break up as both a personal failure and an attack to their feminine capabilities.  Men are also hurt by break-ups, but the big difference is that for a woman, there is also the societal expectation to get the succession right with as few trials as possible.  This is partly because of the biological clock, but partly a social construction according to which women who have had many sexual partners are sluts.
    From the point of view of women being together for 2 years only to find out that the man is [no longer] willing to keep the natural progression to having a family together means  she has to go back to dating (unless she wants to accept that she will be alone, but that was the previous post :-)). Going back to dating her “mileage” wii immediately go up by at least +1, probably by many more, by the time she finds her husband.  In the scale of male offenses, this is much worse than disappearing after a ONS, or after 3 months, and comes right before discovering that he was two-timing you for most of the two years.

    1. 21.1

      Great response!

  22. 22

    Leta, if you’re like me, you’ll be reliving all the sweetest and tenderest moments of your past times with this ex. You’ll be thinking to yourself “If he once loved me this much, then surely he still has some of that love for me, or someday I can rekindle it.” The answer is no. He does not love you that way anymore, and no, you cannot rekindle it by anything you try to do to make it happen. Even wild and passionate and tender love can fade away and disappear.
    Believe the more recent evidence. Believe that he doesn’t want to be with you anymore. Then make a resolution to yourself that you will be happy without him and dive into your next phase of life with energy. You said you would be busy with many things. Well then emerse yourself in them. Love yourself first. Reclaim yourself. See how great it feels. You can do it girl.

  23. 23

    I know you don’t feel “lucky” right now. But it should take about a year and a half to know if someone is a good bet to marry. So you only wasted a year beyond what should have been the cutoff. I wasted 5.5. years in my thirties — years I can never get back, years I spent crying and freaking out. I think I screwed up my adrenal glands, yikes. And no, it wasn’t worth it. Now I’m married to a wonderful guy; it’ll be eight years come New Year’s. I rarely think about the man who took me on that hideous emotional roller coaster. In a few years, you will rarely think about this guy because you will have long since moved on with someone new.  Someone better.  Someone SO MUCH better!  Good luck to you.

  24. 24

    @ Ruby #12
    “it’s always best to bring up any possible concerns. Too many people spend far too long pretending that nothing is wrong until they simply can’t take it anymore.”
    Yes. This*1000! I am honestly shocked by what I see out there, now that I am dating, listen to people’s stories of their past experiences, and have been through a LTR myself. I got married in my early 20s, to a man who was also in his early 20s and who, in retrospect, was a pretty bad match. We met in college, dated for a year, agreed to get married one day when we were both falling drunk, and just coasted on chemistry from there on until it was too late to back out of that marriage. We must’ve come across as a pretty awful couple, because on my wedding day, my mom walked into the room where I was doing my hair and makeup and gave me this advice: “at least, don’t have kids, because you two are going to get divorced anyway” We were married 18 years. We had some awful times, but we also had some good times. What we used to do on a regular basis, all the way until the last 2-3 years of marriage when we both gave up on it, was that we used to sit down and talk over any serious issues any of had, and come up with a solution that would work for us both and keep our marriage running. Keep in mind it was a very bad marriage, that finally fell apart three years ago, and none of our kids were even surprised about it. So I was shocked to learn that hardly anyone does this sitting down and resolving their issues thing anymore. People just get into relationships based on chemistry, then get out as soon as the buzz wears off. Or, like you said, they have complaints, never say a word about them, pretend that everything’s fine, then one day they say they cannot take it anymore and break up, and even then they still don’t tell their, now, ex-partner what exactly it was that they couldn’t take anymore. WTF people! If my ex-husband and I could sit down, articulate what we did not like, and work on it together, anyone can. I am honestly amazed by this modern trend of keeping quiet about anything that bothers you and then randomly walking out. These are grown people in their 40s and 50s. How do people manage to raise children with that mentality? how do they manage to have careers, and be in charge of other people at work, with that mentality? My ex-husband and I cannot be the only two mature adults in this world. There have to be others like us out there, but I haven’t met any of them yet in my dating pursuits. Maybe next time?

  25. 25

    Happy #18
    Sounds like you are contradicting yourself. You say there is no “one”, yet nobody seems to compare to your ex. If you’ve dated many men and no one holds your interest besides a long-ago ex, aren’t you making him into your version of “the one” by not letting him go? Perhaps you are still protecting yourself from getting so hurt again?

  26. 26

    Kiki, first off, Evan seems to want other men to comment on here. Share experiences and ideas. It helps round out the conversation. And frankly, I see plenty of other women engaging with male comments and some expressing thanks for hearing our voices. It can become something of an echo chamber when only one set of voices is heard from. I like diversity. I think it’s needed for a good life.
    Secondly, the phrase “he strung me along” is flat out inaccurate most of the time. It assumes a premeditation quality, and a fixed agenda, a place that only a small minority of men really are coming from. The reality is a lot more complicated than this most of the time. Men and women break up after multiple year relationships all the time for a wide variety of reasons, some of which aren’t clear to them until long after the breakup. Karl’s comment was harsh, and I disagree with him that this is solely a “woman’s complaint” – men use lines like this as well. But I do think he’s right in pointing out how that kind of thinking isn’t really accurate or helpful.
    It’s interesting. You seem to both be calling out the unfair societal double standards women face when it comes to relationships and marriage, and yet also basically agreeing to them. No one should be held to an expectation that they need to “follow through” on the progression of a relationship to marriage and children simply because they stayed with someone a few years. Nor should anyone be penalized for having a past with relationships that didn’t last. We should be rejecting these kind of notions, yet the way you frame it, men who break up with women after a few years are guilty of a major offense. And women are somehow damaged because the guy didn’t stay with her. What about all the women who leave after multiple year relationships? Seriously, I’ve been on that end of the stick more than once, and odds are most of the men here also have been there as well.
    I totally understand that it’s lousy to see something end after multiple years of investment. I’ve been there multiple times, as have most of the commenters here regardless of gender. I also get it that for women who want children, the time spent with someone who leaves or doesn’t work, for whatever reason, feels like a major loss. Or a waste even. It may even be true that the guy in the relationship wasn’t ever clear about what he wanted, hid issues that needed to be dealt with upfront, or generally struggled to do all the things needed to maintain a healthy connection. However, none of that can be reduced to being a player with a calculated goal to use a woman. Which is what the line “he strung me along” really means. It’s laying all the blame at the hands of a predator. Nice and tidy, but not realistic most of the time.

    1. 26.1

      I think the main issues here is that biologically men and women designed in different ways. Women tend to want to nest and bond emotionally, men want to spread the semen so to speak and separate emotions from sex. Equating men and women in relationships is not fair, because it’s not honest.

      So, women tend to think of relationships as time and emotions investment. I am sure men do too, but its way easier for them to bounce back and biological clocks are not ticking in their ears.

  27. 27

    Some men feel that it is in the best interest of everyone, men and women, to provide a viewpoint from the other (in this case, male) perspective.  I can only speak for myself, but that is why I post on here, and I would suspect that is the case for a number of other men on here.  I first learned about EMK when I bought a book of his on online dating years back.  The book was for both men an women, so I came upon his website due to that.  So, we are not just trolling.
    There are a couple of things in your post that you’re right about:  women like to complain about men and they like to seek validation.  However, no one is better off as a result of practicing that.  Posts like Angie’s in #10 don’t benefit anyone.  At best, they make the OP temporarily feel better, but they don’t really provide any tangible assistance for improving her situation going forward.  At worst, they inspire false confidence and foster bitterness towards men. 
    As for the “stringing women along” bit.  Perhaps it could be beneficial to view relationships for what they are, and focus on enjoying all of the good times that you have together.  Just because the relationship ended after three years, or whatever, doesn’t mean that it was a total waste because it didn’t end in marriage.  Another thing to keep in mind:  a man doesn’t owe a woman marriage.  He is deciding whether this person is a good life partner while he is dating her (just like she is with him), and just because he breaks up with her doesn’t mean he was stringing her along.  Things change, and he may have no longer saw her as a good match.

  28. 28

    If I understand it right, a man strings a woman along if he promises her things that he knows she wants, with no intent of delivering, just because he wants a warm body in his bed, hot dinner on the table, whatever it is he gains by keeping her around. For example, if he knows she wants a marriage and kids, he doesn’t want any of that stuff, but keeps talking to her about their future marriage and kids without ever making any concrete plans. That’s stringing along. Ending a relationship because one or both sides feel that it isn’t what they wanted, it has run its course, or for whatever other reason one or both people want out, is not stringing along. The idea that both people are obligated to stay in a relationship and progress from one stage to the next, just because they’ve already put in an X number of months or years, is ridiculous. It is a relationship, not a jail sentence of life without parole. I am in complete agreement with what Nathan said on this subject.
    Also, Kiki, you need to speak for yourself. Not all of us want another marriage, and many of us do not want any more children. If I met a guy who wanted to eventually progress to me having his babies, I’d run fast. If I met a guy who’d hold it against me that I was in several LTRs before meeting him, I’d run even faster. Not all men are like that.
    What people do and do not want out of a relationship, is something they usually discuss before they get into said relationship. Shouldn’t be any major surprises there. They might find out, later down the road, that they disagree on finer details of what they want their relationship to be like, but it shouldn’t come as a surprise after several years together that one of them wants children and the other doesn’t.
    I suspect that Kim’s ex might’ve truly strung her along, in the sense that I meant it here, because she says he “finally opened up”. This sounds to me like he was planning to continue being in a relationship with her, for whatever reasons, while thinking that she was needy and dependent and they had nothing in common; and that he’d still be with her if she hadn’t forced him to finally open up and tell her how he really felt.

    1. 28.1
      Dina Strange

      You seem to like running. Why to have relationships then? Just keep on running.

  29. 29

    I am aware that not everyone wants marriage and not everyone wants children.
    A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bycicle ;-).
    It still beats me why some girls get so upset when their boyfriends dump them, when they should be (Nathan and Chance, pls choose  one or more):
    A) be celebrating freedom
    b) focus on enjoying the good times they had together
    c) be undestanding that it is only fair that if women ever leave men, men also leave women.

  30. 30

    @ Karl T,
    Please, then, when you are telling us all how sick you are of women saying this or that, add the caveat that you are enlightening women rather than complaining that you don’t like what they’re saying.  It will help eliminate confusion, no?  And while I can’t speak for other women here, truth is often best served up delivered with some grace.

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