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Sort of Broken Up

Dear Loveawake: I have been dating pretty non-stop for the past 11 years since my divorce. All of them were kind of long-distance relationships where we saw each other on weekends, and I always had my space and “freedom”. Then 4 mos ago,I met a guy who was absolutely tender, sweet and affectionate, and he looked after me. We spent three mos practically living together (he came over one night and never left ..) It was not a perfect relationship but it was perfectly normal and we both were very happy and most definitely in love. Then I started noticing all the classic symptoms of depression and withdrawl. I did not know what was going on, then he told me that it was his job (he is 100% commission sales person, and in this economy, I can only imagine what it is like having a job like that ..) But still I was not able to relate to his situation completely and kept pushing (I have a highly-paid job and I am not patient ..) I felt rejected and in the same time, my legacy commitment phobia raised its head. I kept having long, drawn-out conversations, and we picked fights with each other. This went on for about a month and half. During which, I broke up with him two and half times, but every single time he came back and tried to make up.  But then I did not see the “necessary” improvement I wanted, I got upset again. Eventually I asked him to take all his stuff out of my place.  And finally he told me what was going on – besides his dead-end job and ahole boss, he is still entangled in a complete financial diaster from the divorce (which was finalized a year before we met.)  And that a week a ago.
Before I left, we sat in his car and talked for two and half hours, and about many things (memories of past good time, what he did that hurt me, and what I did that was unreasonable, and why logically, it is the right decision for both of us not to date.) I gave him a hug and said: take good care of yourself.  He replied: why did you say that?  you don’t want to talk to me ever again?  I said: no, that is not what I meant. I am not like that.

Anyway, here is my pain:I broke up with him not because I did not care about him or did not want to be him anymore. I realized that due to the current circumstances (that his personal life is a mess) a new relationship and a demanding girlfriend is the last thing he needs to deal with right now.  But I am still so emotionally attached to him because the time we spent together, we were like family. I don’t want to date him now, but I also don’t want to lose him or cast him out of my life all together. Do I hope or at least pray that if his situation improves, we should both give it another try – absolutely.  But right now, I don’t know exactly what to do to accomplish seemingly contradicting goals – letting him know that I want to support him as a friend even that means giving him space and time, and reminding him that I still love and care for him.

He has txted me and called me apologizing for having hurt me and asking me how I was doing during past week.  I was not going to respond to any of it, but on Thur, I did pick up one call, and we talked for a while (about his job, my work, my weekend plan, etc.) He called me again Thur night, but no VM. I did not call back until last night. But he didn’t pick up. I did not leave a message (What do you say?)

Sorry for the long winding message – I am seeing a therapy now as I am “officially depressed”. But I am really curious to hear what SBG has to offer as alternative! ~On Again Off Again~

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Dear OAOA: Loveawake think you’re thinking too much about this (therapy will do that to you). Breakups are never easy even if they’re for the right reasons. You’re feeling a typically loss at the breakup even though you initiated it. Don’t make this guy’s life any more difficult by breaking up with him then refusing to let go.

If you want to get back together, you should think about what YOU’RE going to do to change… you have made this all about your Charming Chap when in the experience, it’s rare that breakups are anyone’s “fault”.

In short OAOA, break up or get back together, but stop stringing this guy along.