Hey Dr. NerdLove,
So I had a decade long relationship with a lady (We’ll call her B) which came to an end. We both realised we needed to do things for ourselves and work on becoming better more mature people emotionally for each other. In order to work on some of our toxic habits within the relationship, we took a break from the relationship. But the reality is, we weren’t sure if it was a permanent break up or not.
Fast forward a year after, we continued talking and having fairly regular friend-sex, but I made a huge move away. We had spoken about wanting to get back together for months, but we both believed we weren’t quite there yet. We see each other as the one and only of our lives, but we had been dating for the entirety of our adult lives, and sometimes it felt like things were missed outside of our relationship . I have started to become needy and concerned in my time away wanting to talk to her more but I was busy with work and worried she would see me as needy and annoying. I was also scared that she was seeing other guys. Getting so scared about it made me feel very insecure, selfish and immature, wanting her to myself even though I moved away from her.
For some context, I have had sex and some teenage experiences before being with her, but I was her first and only experience for the last 10 years and I think that slightly adds to my insecurity. She has used that slightly as a reason to wanting to see what it was like to sleep with others.
After moving, she continued sending me things like nudes and telling me to hurry and visit because she’s getting “desperate” — just all playful flirty fun to get me rushing back sooner I guess. But last night I tried to call her wanting to catch up and talk about the “us” situation.
Well it ended in her missing my calls and telling me later she has been having sex with some other guys specifically that night while I was calling her and other nights before this, she would reaffirm that nothing was serious, I was still special and important and saying things like no one gets her or makes her feel like I do, especially sexually. She also said that a lot of what she’s been doing has been to due to depression; she has a history of self harm and ended up replacing it with sex, sex that I could no longer give her since I moved.
(I was unaware of the self harm coming back up until recently; she had only continued in the last few months.)
I guess my question is: how do I come to grips with all of this? I truly believe she still loves me and I know I still love her. After a long up and down night, we seem more determined than ever to get back together and make it work in the near future. Of course, the geographical location side of things being eventually dealt with as well.
But I feel so horrible and like a fool. It’s brought me to tears every day, I feel angry, replaced and unneeded, but also jealous and somewhat envious. She was happy for me to see other girls but I can’t bring myself to even try now, I don’t see myself as someone who could get laid or do the dating thing anymore. Not to mention I’m still madly in love with her and don’t want to string other girls along just for sex to even some sort of score between me and B.
I am dealing with all sorts of emotions daily now and plan to make regular visits to her until it either we break up for good, or one of us makes the move and we get back together. I want to feel important and special, and she says all the right things but I am having such a hard time getting over her experiences while we weren’t together. I wanted to be mature and understanding but I’m struck with jealousy and anger like nothing else.
She tells me she doesn’t want to keep sleeping with guys after talking to me, that she wished I was more needy and spoke to her on the phone more, that might have made her less wanting of finding other temporary guys. I wish I put in the effort now, I feel like an absolute fool for trying not to bother her constantly when she tells me now that’s what she wanted, that she hasn’t thoroughly enjoyed sex without me and misses talking to me.
I just wanna be the better man and believe she wants me over anyone else and be better for her, that I don’t become resentful because of her interest in experimenting out there during our “break”. Help?
Break Up or Break Down