April 16, 2018 at 9:15 am #170637
Hi Ladies, I’m new here. Feel like I need to get things off my chest without getting family opinions etc. involved..
Soo.. I’m in a long term relationship with my fiancé (6 years.. longest for both of us) and we have two kids together under 5. He is a little bit older than me but we seem to work together well most of the time. We’ve never had major issues, no big dramas to report. But… here comes the but….
Last year my nana who I am very close with passed away due to illness, so we had a little bit of warning. It was a really hard year. I’m not close with my dad (whole other issue) but this was his mother and I loved her dearly. She felt more like my second parent. Anyway, this bought up a lot of feelings about my boyfriend who was killed in a car accident 10 years ago, obviously unexpectedly. That experience was very traumatic and definitely shaped me partly into who I am today (which most of my family and friends would say is very friendly, bubbly, warm etc.). So this time last year had me very emoitional, vulnerable and I ended up pushing my partner away big time. I guess I was questioning the meaning of life and how precious it is. I should also add that losing a boyfriend so unexpectedly when we were so inlove, has always left me wondering “what if” and comparing others to him. Counselors have told me that it’s like he has the trophy, and no one will ever compare and that somehow I need to stop thinking of him.
So I was pretty horrible to my partner, just pushing him away and pretty much saying I’m not so many words, that I wasn’t sure we were suited.. I won’t go in to the long list of why not. But fast forward a few months to Christmas, and things were looking up. I started to remember all the reasons I love my partner and was able to start putting the grief behind me.
2018 was looking to be a promising year.. H2B has recently accepted a new role and will be traveling for work quite a lot, and this is where I’m confused.. I’m actually looking forward to him going and can’t wait to have the house and kids to myself. I find myself nit-picking at little things, and often thinking of how he is not like my deceased boyfriend. We were actively planning a wedding but that got out on the back burner while he went to interview in other cities for this new job. I don’t really have a desire to keep planning it. The new job allows us to move cities and be closer to his family. So now I feel pressure of whether we stay or go. I feel so confused about how I am feeling because I don’t know how to differentiate between what are normal feelings in a long term relationship, and what are genuine compatibility issues or qualities in a partner that I feel are lacking.
Help me ladies.. how do you know if you are genuinely unhappy in a relationship, or if it’s just part of the ebb and flow??
And if you’ve made it this far – thank you for hearing me out xxxJune 24, 2018 at 5:14 pm #194131
Thank you for sharing such a meaningful story! As I myself, am not married and am not sure if I can offer any helpful insight…. I do share similar characteristics in my current relationship as well. My boyfriend and I have been together for a long time and of course at first, things were wonderful, then we started bickering all of the time because I felt like what I wanted out of him was not what I was getting, and then recently, an event happened while I was on vacation with his entire family and now I find myself not only distanced and unhappy with his families behavior, but I am questioning the relationship long term as well. I cannot decide whether I am pushing for something that I want in my head, or if my partner is actually good for me. I think its important that you take some time to break everything up into pieces and dissect the relationship so to speak.
Sit down and take some time to yourself, even write notes down if it will help you. Take note of all of the things that bother you in the relationship or cause you worry. After you have taken note or bullets of the issues, create hypothetical solutions. If the issues can be resolved by the work between the two of you, then you need to communicate that to him clearly and see what can be fixed. If you cannot seem to come up with solutions, then I would think those problems come from inside your heart and how you truly feel.
I did the same activity with my relationship, and found that my issues can be resolved between the partnership and work among the two of us. Now clearly, if those issues do not change, then the future of my relationship may be lost. This activity helped to show me that my issues and concerns were with my partner only and not my actual feelings towards him.
The best way to put it and I am sure everyone can understand, is that a relationship is not solely based upon love. It is a partnership similar to a job. You and your partner must have a compatibility and be able to give and take and work together as a team. That is what creates issues for most people and messes with their heads. At first, I was pushing and pushing for my relationship thinking that it was not going to work out because I was so confused why we had so many issues and problems if we loved each other so much. Once I realized that we must work together at all times as a team to work through problems while remaining in love, then that is how is healthy and functional relationship will work out.
Once you create a list of concerns and possible solutions, you might have a better idea on whether the feelings are partnership based, or if you are genuinely unhappy. Also make sure you are clear on the fact that external events such as family, traumatic events and such, can influence the way you feel and think. To get a clear idea, clear your mind and disregard those events and focus on the relationship between you and your partner only and go from there.
I am so sorry to hear about everything that has happened and appreciate you taking the time to share. You sound like a very strong individual and I hope and pray that you will find your way. I hope you were able to take something away from this, and I wish you the best of luck. Thank you for sharing!June 25, 2018 at 7:26 am #194447
I cannot add much to Rochelle’s excellent answer here, but will add that it is easy to fall back onto the past when thinking of any worries. You could well be doing that subconsciously, thinking the worst. There are a lot of variables in a relationship, and don’t forget that your children need two caring parents, if possible, whatever you do. Not essential, but how do you get on with his parents? Maybe moving away is a good idea if you have few ties now where you are. A clean break.
I just wonder whether there are problems in your relationship, or whether it is you being scared of another major trauma ending things.June 26, 2018 at 6:56 am #194541
I think you realize he won’t stick around no matter what and that your relationship does need work. You’re naturally grieving for your last boyfriend: and I am sorry for that. It must’ve been devastating. Just be honest with him and tell him what you’ve told us. Coming to terms with someone’s death – as you know – is so, so hard. You’re naturally lashing out. The only way to strengthen your relationship is to tell him this. I also second Rochelle’s post. You can learn a lot from her: she is a wise woman.
I do hope I’ve helped.June 27, 2018 at 4:53 am #194582
Hi OliveJack – curious where you’re at now with all this since your posting in April? First off, sorry for the loss of your boyfriend 10 years ago. Secondly, did you get help with the grieving of that loss? I ask bcuz although I didn’t lose my ex to a death, I did lose him; he walked out on me and the kids after 23 years, back in 2009 to do something completely out of character (sell drugs for money out of desperation and ended up marrying the well known female drug dealer that got him involved in that)…and I think I was in shock/traumatized bcuz I didn’t crumble like most would of, especially after 23 years together (I was 39 at the time he walked out). ANYHOW, I did the best I could for a year after that and then met my now Husband. Of course everything was hunky-dory for the first year after we met/moved in together but then I began having thoughts like you (ie. questioning life and how short/previous it is, especially bcuz I lost 2 close nephews in 2007 – one week apart – just 2 years prior to my ex walking out), and pushing my Man away. I felt like I knew exactly what I was doing, and felt like I had a black heart..I was steady comparing him too to my ex etc. My Man (whose now my Husband), didn’t deserve that treatment from me, but I couldn’t help it. It was a bonus for me that he worked out of town for two weeks at a time bcuz I just wanted to be alone. I enjoyed it. Mind you, there were lotsa good times too when I wasn’t thinking that way or being that way and was very much in love and happy etc.
Fast forward to a couple years after we met and we got married, I was obviously happy but in the back of my mind, I was questioning that; “am I really happy”…”is this what I really want” etc etc. Then life went on. We are going on 8 years together next month and I am still questioning things and thinking of the ex and how things would be if this/that etc. Am I just settling? Are we just companions and not really a married couple if I’m thinking this way; almost like one foot out the door. It’s weird. But just wanted to write in and say I can relate to your post. I’m interested where you’re at with all that, today.July 17, 2018 at 12:56 pm #195093
Hello, OliveJack. I am also wondering how you are now? Of course, you’ll always grieve for your boyfriend. But I hope you are happier today and living your life the way you want.
Take care – and if you are reading this – I do hope things are going well for you.