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He was everything I wanted so why couldn't I?

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  • He was everything I wanted so why couldn't I?

    I'm a 21 year old female college student with very limited dating experience. I met an amazing guy this fall who has been a regular customer at my job for the last few years and we started dating. He was seriously my ideal person. Super creative, hard working, attractive, extremely loving and affectionate, honest, kind, the list goes on and on. We had a lot in common too. But from early on I felt extremely unsure about my feelings which caused me a lot of anxiety. I ended up sticking with it to see if things would change but I just kept feeling unsure. I didn't want to let the relationship end because he fit everything that I wanted in a person and at first I thought I was just afraid of commitment. I took things super slow in the beginning because I didn't want to get intimate too quickly. He was the person I lost my virginity to and I told him that I saw a future with him. But these feelings of anxiety and uncertainty just didn't go away and I was constantly questioning whether or not I really wanted to be in this relationship or not. I finally couldn't take it any more because it was seriously negatively affecting my mental well being and so I ended things. It's honestly been one of the most painful things I've ever had to do because I shared a lot of intimate moments and precious time with this person. He told me he loved me several times and that he wanted to have a long term relationship with me. I feel extremely ashamed and guilty for leading him on. I'm really confused about what it means to like/love someone. I've never seriously "liked" anyone in my life. I know I'm really young and I'll have a lot more opportunities to meet someone but it just doesn't make any sense? How could I not love someone who I pretty much liked everything about and treated me extremely well? Was I just not ready? Was the timing just wrong? There was so much potential to this relationship and I feel like I threw it all out the window.

    Everyone tells me "When you know you just know" and I know that I didn't have that feeling...It just really sucks because now I'm experiencing the loss of a really important person to me and I don't think I'll ever get him back. It's stupid to say but it makes me feel like I'll never fall in love.

  • #2
    As painful as you feel right now, you'll fall in love again. You'll mature and grow within yourself, know who you are and know how not to let a good one get away in the future. Live and learn. You are young and over time, you'll wise up. When I was 21, I didn't know about people and the world either. You go through life, meet different people and you become a better judge of what suits you or doesn't suit you. I'm sorry you're hurt. When people, say, "When you know you just know," it also comes from experience both good and bad. Also, from regrets and remorse as well. Growing up doesn't end at 21. For many, it takes a lifetime. Chin up, you'll be ok!
    "If you bungle raising your children, whatever else you do well in life doesn't matter very much."

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    • #3
      I know exactly what you are talking about, anxiety is very hard to deal with in a relationship. Some people believe you can work through it but being honest, I think it means the relationship is wrong for you. Yes he was great, yes he was everything you wanted but in the end, something was missing and thatís ok. Itís not his fault and itís not yours. Someday you will meet someone who might not be exactly what you were looking for, but there will be no anxiety and it will just feel right. He was your first for a lot of things and that is really nice, but Iím a firm believer that your first doesnít have to be your last. Some people come into our lives and teach us things and then we need to move on and it hurts and itís hard but you donít need to drag it on. Appreciate the times you had with him and be grateful for the experience but donít close yourself off to someone else because one day youíll meet someone who will make you glad it didnít work out with with this guy.

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      • #4
        Not to dwell on negatives but if you can, acknowledge flaws in the relationship you have also and recognize what doesn't work for you. Just because someone doesn't float your boat doesn't necessarily mean he/she is a terrible person. You'll slowly carve out the things you like and the things you don't like when you're in a relationship or partnered and avoid making the same mistakes twice in terms of choosing a partner. He might not be as important to you as you think in the long run. Take it easy on yourself.

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        • #5
          Thank you all so much for giving me some really helpful reminders. I tend to be someone who's really hard on myself so I think a lot of this has been trying not to beat myself up over it. I know that this was the right choice because now I'm actually able to focus on the things I want to do to better myself as a person. While I was in this relationship it caused me so much anxiety that all of the work I was doing to achieve goals just stopped. The hardest part is just getting passed the initial shock and pain.

          Any advice for when I inevitably run into him? I live in a fairly small city and we frequent a lot of the same area's and have mutual friends.

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          • #6
            I'd keep it cordial and polite. Don't leave room for antagonizing anyone and don't leave room for inviting personal questions about your life. People whom you've known(and that includes exes) will naturally feel drawn to wanting to know more about your life and how you're keeping on. Keep your responses generic in general passer-by type of situations and if he or anyone asks about how you've been speak simply without details.

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            • #7
              I'm a strong believer in the old adage that people come into your life for a Reason, a Season or a Lifetime.
              I dated a guy while I was in high school, and your story reminds me our relationship to a 'T' !
              He was handsome, kind, genuine, sexy and we had tons in common.

              The one CRUCIAL aspect that was missing, was that I didn't see 'forever' with him. I didn't feel it, want it or even talk about it with him.
              I felt that same anxiety that you describe, because deep down, I knew he was in love with me (high school equivalent, but you know what I mean) and I didn't have it in me to reciprocate.

              This was 30 years ago, honey, and I've been very fortunate to experience deep love a couple of times since then

              Trust anyone who tells you this: "you'll know when it's real, because no one and nothing could convince you other wise"

              And don't beat yourself up in the meantime, sweetie. You did good by him and yourself in the end
              The definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result.

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              • #8
                Do you have anxiety in general, *Whatisit5* or was it just while you were paired up with this guy?
                "First off, welcome to the Relationship Forums, You'll come to understand that I don't pull any punches when giving my opinion/advice and I hope you're not so sensitive to what I see as the truth of the matter." Me!

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by phasesofthemoon View Post
                  Do you have anxiety in general, *Whatisit5* or was it just while you were paired up with this guy?
                  I do have general anxiety that's why I thought at first it was just my issues with anxiety. At several points I talked to him about it and chalked it up to things like "I'm used to spending a lot of time alone so this is scary." "I'm afraid of the future and whether or not things will work out" and those were legitimate concerns and points of anxiety but the true root of it was just generally being unsure about the relationship and how I felt about him. I think the fact that he was really in love with me scared me because I knew my feelings didn't extend that far and he even knew that and said it was okay but I was afraid I would never feel the same way.

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                  • #10
                    pistol Thank you so much for your encouraging words it really helps to hear this affirmation. I believe that I did meet him for a reason and I'm very grateful for the experience I had even though it didn't last like I hoped. I have to keep reminding myself how young I am still and how much I have yet to experience still. I guess it just feels like everyone else around me has been or is currently in long term dating relationships, it's easy to feel left behind or like I'm missing something. But I've spent way too long learning to love and be happy with myself to fall into that trap now. I'm not gonna rush or force anything when it comes to romantic relationships, there's just too much at stake for me.

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                    • #11
                      Well, you have to be sure of who you're giving your heart to so that's that.

                      DO get help with your anxiety if you're not already doing so, though. You don't want to miss out on something awesome in the romantic realm when you're ready to date in the future.

                      Good luck going forth, and be proud that you're happy in your own skin.
                      "First off, welcome to the Relationship Forums, You'll come to understand that I don't pull any punches when giving my opinion/advice and I hope you're not so sensitive to what I see as the truth of the matter." Me!

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by whatisit5 View Post
                        pistol Thank you so much for your encouraging words it really helps to hear this affirmation. I believe that I did meet him for a reason and I'm very grateful for the experience I had even though it didn't last like I hoped. I have to keep reminding myself how young I am still and how much I have yet to experience still. I guess it just feels like everyone else around me has been or is currently in long term dating relationships, it's easy to feel left behind or like I'm missing something. But I've spent way too long learning to love and be happy with myself to fall into that trap now. I'm not gonna rush or force anything when it comes to romantic relationships, there's just too much at stake for me.
                        My son is 22 and has had 3 girlfriends in his short time on this earth. He didn't date at all in high school, as he was obese and the girls only looked at him as 'the funny, fat kid'.
                        Before prom, he was well on his way to becoming healthier and happier with his weight and his view of himself. After shedding over 125 pounds post graduation, and gaining incredible self-confidence, he put himself out there and girls were now receptive to his offers (our society is so sad - he was still the same 'funny guy', just not fat anymore)

                        Each one of his relationships ended for one reason or another (one girl moved away for school, he had his heart broken by another, and the 3rd one he is still great friends with, just not a great match romantically) but I'll tell you why I wanted to share this with you.

                        He now has girls demonstrating a strong interest in dating him, but he's so focused now on his future, investing time into his internship for school, enjoying the time he gets to himself and with his family, etc, that the thing he wanted most in life a few short years ago (a girl to show interest in him and it to develop into something amazing) is the very last thing on his mind now.

                        He could pursue any one of these interests, and it could very well develop into something long term and viable, but he is SO happy with himself, the direction his 'career' is taking and has so much self love, that he no longer looks for validation from anyone.

                        Although he too has friends that are already getting married, in long term relationships, he sometimes questions if his choices are making HIM the odd man out, and is he making the right decision to keep his focus on his future and not on 'interviewing' for his potential bride.....but what I tell him is that if he doesn't continue doing things the way he is, especially considering how natural it is for him to do so, he'll regret it.

                        The right woman is out there for him, and the right man is out there for you too !

                        You'll both find that person (or they'll find you) and you'll be glad that you stuck to your 'plan'.

                        There is absolutely no 'right' or 'wrong' about this, it is simply a life choice. We make them every single day, and I think it's wonderful that neither you or my son need someone else to make you feel like you'd be happier if you only had a significant other to make you so.
                        The definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result.

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